thoughts out of season


In the recent past, 3 fellows were severely beaten, killed and later dumped in a river by, we suspect, cops. In the US of A, there is a similar story and elsewhere in Baghdad, some over zealous religiots blasted a building killing more than 200 people.

this brings me to my first question of the day; Has existence any worth? What is the value of human life.

A mammal is a warm-blooded vertebrate animal of a class that is distinguished by the possession of hair or fur, the secretion of milk by females for the nourishment of the young, and (typically) the birth of live young. I see an animal befitting the above description and call it a mammal. And this is designated as truth. Anyone who disagrees is a madman or a madman.

My second question of the day; What is truth?

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About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

52 thoughts on “thoughts out of season

  1. Mordanicus says:

    Have you read David Benatar’s “Better never to have been”? In this book Benatar argues that existence is not worthwhile. I believe I have recommended you this book earlier.

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  2. Beauty is truth, truth beauty – that is all
    Ye know on earth and all ye need to know

    Or so said Mr Keats. Can’t say I agree, mind.

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  3. Veracious Poet says:

    “Has existence any worth?”….”What is truth?”
    — Do you mean truth as regards existence?

    Psychology provides some useful answers to such ontological questions. The problems of this world are a reflection of problems of deficiencies of the mind and the ‘soul.'(soul means consciousness and all that influences it)

    I think existence is “what is” and truth is “what is and shall always be” which brings us to traditional metaphysics. But whatever ‘is or shall always be’ has to be perceived by a mind. If a particular mind fails to perceive that due to certain inadequacies, then its truth will be different from that of any other mind.

    I hope that answers your question.

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    • makagutu says:

      Truth as regards truth.
      My question was, and I will use an illustration again; is something red because we designate a certain hue red or is there something red that is independent of our calling it so, I hope that makes sense.
      I am but I will not always be. What does this do to your definition of truth?

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      • Veracious Poet says:

        “Truth as regards truth”– this implies that you know truth.

        There is always something that objectively exists, independent of perceptive biases eg sun, moon, trees, birds etc. Bulls can also see red so the color red is independent of our calling it so.

        Indeed, you are and will not always be but collectively, humanity is and will always be. Considering the total number of years in which humanity or life has existed, you and I as individuals don’t exist yet.

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        • makagutu says:

          But you see you are missing the point of my question. We have designated a something the sun, another a bull. And another a tree. Is this not an illusion that these words, anthropomorphic as they are, denote these things?
          You mean there is no chance of humanity going extinct? Your certainty surprises me

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          • Veracious Poet says:

            I think I understood your question. You seem to be diverting towards semantics and implying that all things are so because we designated them as so (with words).

            One certainty is that, other organisms perceive each other independent of human perception. Would you say eagles and monkeys can’t see each other because humans can’t see them?

            Yes, I believe there will always be humans on earth…they may only look different from us and perhaps be more malign. For humanity to revert to good, it will take a remarkable event, a kind of rebirth which the religious folks are hoping for.

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          • makagutu says:

            Interesting that you see it as semantics. Is that your way of answering questions that challenge your deeply held beliefs? Dismiss them with a handwave called semantics?

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      • basenjibrian says:

        red is an adjective. I think “red” is just a description of some underlying reality and that part of that underlying reality is the existence of neurological capacity and eye structures able to distinguish between said states of reality

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  4. “To be or not to be..” Existence is only good in a timeless, spaceless, limitless realm where you drink tea and eat cookies all day with invisible deities named Fred and Ethyl. Oh, my freewill got jammed in the shower door this morning and broke. It’s awful. Now I’ve only half a freewill. What’s a body to do?

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Swarn Gill says:

    “Does existence have any worth” and “what is truth”? Those are two really big big big questions for one post. Spread it out a bit! lol

    Does existence have any worth?: Overall I’d have to say it only has worth in that it is better than not existing. But perhaps that’s just because I am a fortunate person in this world that I have this point of view. But I do think that if more people held that philosophy the world we be a better place. This is why I feel religion which tends to have built in some system to cheat death, cheapens existence, and is of course the root of many problems in the past and now.

    What is truth?: For this question I’m going to have to ask for clarification. Do you mean individually? Objectively? I mean one person can think they know the truth, which might not be somebody else’s truth…and neither may be the actual truth. And the actual truth, may not be the actual truth either even though it might be better than someone else’s individual truth. lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • makagutu says:

      I thought about splitting the posts but laziness prevailed 🙂
      Your point about existing being better than non existence reminds me of Anselm’s argument for god.
      Do you think if a majority believe existence has some worth, it would change how they treat others?
      I mean truth in whichever way you perceive it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Swarn Gill says:

        So I’m reading over this Anselm’s argument, and I am not sure I understand it so I can’t verify whether or not my remark resembles it or not. But I do feel that valuing existence, over non-existence leads to a better appreciation and valuing of life. If 80 years of life in a small speck in the universe, for a small speck in time is going to have any worth at all, to me it comes from the idea that existence, and to be aware of that existence is special, because we know that the universe is more nothing than something, and that life itself is rare.

        Truth to me is much harder to define, simply because I see it as a dynamic rather than static. Not that there isn’t a static truth out there, but to me that’s so far away is to be akin to reaching infinity. Hariod’s definition is a good one…the static position of truth is infallible, but even the truths we think we are sure, may change. All we can know for sure if that we know seems to work. The first and second law of thermodynamics seem unlikely to be found to be not the truth, but only once we reach that far away point of complete understanding would we know this.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Hariod Brawn says:

    My best shot this morning:

    Existence must have worth to itself, as in sustaining its continuance it sees that same worth.

    Truth is an infallible position, yet all positions are contingent.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Ron says:

    Has existence any worth? What is the value of human life?

    Not sure. But according to this website, a fresh cadaver could be worth upwards of $45 million.

    What is truth?

    At the most basic level, that which conforms to reality. Unfortunately, our experiences of reality can be distorted.

    Liked by 2 people

    • makagutu says:

      It does seem, one is worth more dead than alive. In this case non existence trumps 🙂
      Actually it is not just our experiences of reality that can be distorted, what reality is is in itself a big question

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  8. Nan says:

    From a non-philosophical POV, truth is what you make it and thus is distinct for each individual.

    Existence has worth only to the person who values it.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Like Curly once said to Moe of the Three Stooges, “Moe, even if ya’ value non-existence ya’ still gotta exist ta do it. WOO! WOO! WOO! WOO! WOO!”

    Liked by 1 person

  10. john zande says:

    Homeostasis is meaning. It’s also truth.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. shelldigger says:

    I think the value in human life lies in the love of famliy and friends. Terrorists and dictators only have value in their ideologies.

    Truth is that which is not fiction (to be persnickety.) For humans though, truth lies somewhere between facts and perspective. Not the same for everyone.

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  12. I look at the problem this way:

    Would the Earth, all the life on it, the universe, and a possibly larger cosmos, simply cease to exist if Homo sapiens suddenly went extinct?

    No, of course not.

    Therefore, existential questions of reality and truth only reflect our subjective perceptions as well as our struggle to objectively understand the world around us. Such questions are metaphysical, much like those involving religion and theism. I prefer the empirical.

    Liked by 3 people

    • makagutu says:

      It could be the case that existential questions regarding reality and truth are metaphysical but I think they are worth looking at for the simple reason that more often than note, someone somewhere is always saying I am telling you the TRUTH

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      • But I AM telling you the truth!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Existential questions regarding reality and truth are not exclusively metaphysical by any stretch of the imagination. Cosmology, for example, uses strictly empirical means. However, metaphysics must be applied where science falls short; and, that is precisely why billions of people on this planet still believe in gods.

        It is true, someone somewhere is always saying that you are telling us the truth. But, true to my empirical nature, I say to them: “Prove it.”

        I’m a skeptical obstinate ass, aren’t I? Good topic for discussion, Noel. 🙂

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  13. Scottie says:

    I think before you can find any value in another living thing, you have to have empathy. You have to be able to feel something about / to / from the other life. I can understand pain so I don’t want pain, therefore I don’t want others to feel pain…type thing. Then you go up to I love my life, I want to live, I can feel you want to live, therefore I can assign a value for you to live. Now I have no idea the value of life, but I think that is where it has to start. Be well. Hugs

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  14. […] Here we had a discussion on the same […]

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