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  #1    
Old October 23rd, 2013, 03:39 PM
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So two days ago in Language Arts classed we read part of Thomas More's Utopia book thing. The rules of the society were really strict and someone brought the point that with such strict rules and every male and female has a specific role, that eventually the society would die out, because it is not growing and someone gave the examples of Native Americans and the Europeans. We started reading the book The Giver and I'm wondering, what would you consider a perfect society?
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  #2    
Old October 23rd, 2013, 04:36 PM
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There is no perfect society. Humans are not static beings; we cannot be governed completely by laws and rules. We have the free ability to think and feel and thus we will always be individual and inclined to follow our own moral codes.
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Old October 23rd, 2013, 05:34 PM
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^ Her perfect society seems to involve freedom and individualism
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  #4    
Old October 24th, 2013, 05:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silais View Post
There is no perfect society. Humans are not static beings; we cannot be governed completely by laws and rules. We have the free ability to think and feel and thus we will always be individual and inclined to follow our own moral codes.
This.
Also:
The profound drive society has to advance forward will always ruin any kind of Utopia. We always are looking forward. And our drive to go forward creates clashes between populations wanting to go in a slightly different direction. Hence why our biggest technological advances have all been the result of war.
It's also a strange dynamic to be always content, for without sadness there is no joy.
You could say the only true Utopia is forever advancing therefore war-filled. A contradiction? Or is that what is happening right now?
The present, in all it's great unpleasantries, creates the only sustainable Utopia. We just call it life.
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  #5    
Old October 24th, 2013, 10:00 AM
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Perfection isn't really something you can define. Or, well, it's not something you can define easily. I mean, you can say that freedom and happiness are what are needed, but if they were forced or you always felt happy that wouldn't necessarily be perfect.

This is a cop out, but I think the perfect society is the one that keeps trying to be perfect and changing and adapting as it needs to.

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Hence why our biggest technological advances have all been the result of war.
Was the internet a result of war? I've never heard that it was.
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  #6    
Old October 24th, 2013, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Scarf View Post
Perfection isn't really something you can define. Or, well, it's not something you can define easily. I mean, you can say that freedom and happiness are what are needed, but if they were forced or you always felt happy that wouldn't necessarily be perfect.

This is a cop out, but I think the perfect society is the one that keeps trying to be perfect and changing and adapting as it needs to.
That's pretty legit. Perfection as defined not by any normative criteria, but through practice.


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Was the internet a result of war? I've never heard that it was.
Actually, you have no idea how true that is. The internet came from DARPANET, which pioneered the TCP/IP protocols. DARPA creates toys for the US military. Back when I was thinking about engineering, I fantasized about working for an organization like them ><
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Old October 24th, 2013, 10:14 AM
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Whenever I think about the perfect society, I think of the Matrix. That one scene where Morpheus gets captured and that one agent is telling him how the matrix came to be. At first, they tried a perfect society, but no one would accept it. It's like we thrived on pain and suffering.

What I'm trying to say is that there will never be a perfect society. There will always be pain and suffering because without it, how would we know what happiness was?
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Old October 24th, 2013, 10:20 AM
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It seems that a lot of us define a perfect world as one free from pain and suffering.
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Old October 24th, 2013, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by BlahISuck View Post
It seems that a lot of us define a perfect world as one free from pain and suffering.
Well, I know I would certainly call a world full of pain and suffering imperfect so this sort of definition seems to be in the generally right direction for me.

I guess we could define 'perfect' by what it isn't.
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Old October 24th, 2013, 11:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlahISuck View Post
Actually, you have no idea how true that is. The internet came from DARPANET, which pioneered the TCP/IP protocols. DARPA creates toys for the US military. Back when I was thinking about engineering, I fantasized about working for an organization like them ><
Thank you for saving me the trouble.
You can still generally relate most things to within one or two inventions of something built for or during a wartime period. Obviously exceptions are abundant but are outweighed far too much to contrast.
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  #11    
Old October 25th, 2013, 07:55 AM
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While I do not wish to particupate in the conversation completely, bring Hobbes' "State of Nature" up in class and sound like a smarty pants.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_o...#Thomas_Hobbes
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Old October 25th, 2013, 11:19 AM
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Thank you for saving me the trouble. :)
You can still generally relate most things to within one or two inventions of something built for or during a wartime period. Obviously exceptions are abundant but are outweighed far too much to contrast.
I'm still not sure I'm on board with the whole "war is good for progress" (paraphrasing) idea.

I mean, if you look at the US for an example, it's been at war for more years than it hasn't in its entire history so anything that's invented is already likely to happen during wartime. Really, I would think that you could say technological advancements happen whenever there is able money/supplies/facilities/etc. like there is in wartime. We could just put a ton of money into inventing new things without being at war and we'd probably see something similar.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Scarf View Post
I'm still not sure I'm on board with the whole "war is good for progress" (paraphrasing) idea.

I mean, if you look at the US for an example, it's been at war for more years than it hasn't in its entire history so anything that's invented is already likely to happen during wartime. Really, I would think that you could say technological advancements happen whenever there is able money/supplies/facilities/etc. like there is in wartime. We could just put a ton of money into inventing new things without being at war and we'd probably see something similar.
That's just the thing though. There's no incentive like war.

I think escaping the state of nature is a good step towards a perfect world.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 02:45 PM
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DUDE! THE BOOK IS THE GIVER RIGHT!?!?

:D i red that book before, very cool :3

also, its very possible for a perfect society to exist, by definition. though it isn't easy and may not stay forever. i just know that looking at it from the inside, nothing that will be happening will seem wrong and everyone will be happy. I don't know about the people who may come into in though. They might mess everything up depending on the society and the person.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 03:19 PM
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A "perfect society" cannot exist. There will always be people who don't fit in and who are not satisfied with their situation. Even if there's a society that is pre-determined and where everything seems save, some people actually value making own decisions etc.

Read "Brave New World" written by Aldous Huxley and you will get what I mean. A very interesting story/topic that deals with a so-called "perfect" society and its rebels.
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  #16    
Old October 25th, 2013, 03:47 PM
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Perhaps then a perfect world will have everybody fitting in, and everybody being a valued member of the community.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 06:35 PM
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If there is such a thing as a perfect society, there would be no need for any weapons, including nuclear missiles, tanks, whatever have you. Alas, it is not meant to be, & such things are a necessary evil in this damned planet...
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Old October 25th, 2013, 06:56 PM
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Old October 25th, 2013, 06:56 PM
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Everything I wanted to say has pretty much been summed up in this thread xD

Basically, perfection is different for each individual.

Utopia = Dystopia

--

A society cannot be perfect, only its fundamentals can. We seek perfection according to a design but that design will always have errors.

Like, for example, monarchy, representative democracy, communism, and anarchy. These are the best examples.

A Monarchy works because no one - except the ruler - has to worry about making decisions. Atleast, the majority of decisions... But when the ruler fails to make the correct decisions, that's a fault in the society, not monarchy.

Rep. Dem. states that your representatives have your best interest and, when they speak on your behalf, they say what you would. When this is not the case, which shows discord in the society, it fails - but Rep. Dem. is not at fault, the society is.

Communism works in China, for example, but didn't work in other nations because those nations could not achieve communism's standard. Anarchy states that everyone will be able to rule themselves (self-rule) without going against the will of others. When this fails, survival of the fittest occurs. In both Communism and Anarchy, the society may fail but the CONCEPT is, itself, perfect.

^ So, every TYPE of society is inherently perfect on their own. Applied, however, weaknesses generate and the societies themselves, as a result, are imperfect and may fail due to that.

--

As for the idea that advancement won't occur, you should watch the anime Mawaru Pengiundrum. It's where I learned about the Frozen World concept - you'll see a great example of the halt of advancement
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Old October 25th, 2013, 07:18 PM
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"Perfect" is quite a relative term. What's perfect for me, might be less than ideal for you, and what's ideal for you might be less than ideal for me.

Since we as humans are all unique as snowflakes in most important aspects, I don't think anything could ever be called perfect. There's just no sustainable way to attend to the individual needs of all.

That said, as humans, we are as adverse to stagnation as we can be to change. What might be perfect for me today may not suffice tomorrow, and what I didn't want yesterday could be what I want today. I'm not trying to say that I or anyone else is really that indecisive though, just illustrating how capable we are of changing our wants and wishes.

That being said, if it could be done, then everyone would likely all be pretty well isolated in their own perfect worlds, never really knowing others.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 09:57 PM
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So a fundamental tension is that between what "I" want and what "We" want, right? That much I /can/ agree with, since the idea that humans being "all unique as snowflakes" precludes a "perfect" society is bit individualistic for my tastes.

When looking at a group of individuals, instead of looking at the differences that makes them unique, can we look at the similarities that make them a group? Perhaps from there we can identify common interests that should be worked towards? As Pachy's pointed out, people are unique, so society should serve the collective and not individual needs.

Hmm. That statement begs for definition. "Society" to the extent that affects everybody, must reflect our common interests - that is to say the parts of society held in common should be "common". Haha this is terribly vague but I'll leave definitions at that. Instead, I'll pose this question - on what grounds can we claim there are common interests among humans? After all, everybody being isolated in their own world sounds much more like a dystopia than a perfect world to me. Surely we can agree to more than agreeing to disagree and be separate.

^ even though I'm disagreeing with Pachy, my ideas are still rooted in a liberal, individual perspective :\ I wonder if any of us can bring up a truly original idea, or at least something that isn't shoved down our throats every waking second of our lives.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:05 PM
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Well, your reply is based on something shoved down people's throats Teehee

You think that everyone having their own little world would be a dystopia due to your collectivist mindset. To that, I say:

Minecraft

Yes, Minecraft! True, people seek others to mingle with, but when they grow tired of this they can simply generate their own little world, singleplayer, which operates as they desire it to.

That's the beauty of sandbox.


Various people can join in multiplayer if the MP world is designed in a way they all like, but there will still be worlds which they don't like.

So, to this accord, a community of utopias could exist if each person is allowed their own world, with their own rules, but they can go into MP worlds with people they agree with in which the world is based off of those similarities.


This is actually my desire for our world: Each and every type of society should exist, to operate to its best of its own accord, where everyone is allowed to move between them so that they can find the societies they love the most, while anarchic societies could exist as hubs which allow people to live alone as they desire if they do not feel like living in another type of society per the moment.


This can be somewhat achieved with Virtual Reality.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:18 PM
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But why not take a step back, and look at humanity as a whole? I don't know, maybe I have tendencies to make allegiances to groups - because I'd be disappointed if that's how society was organized. I'd rather a world in which all of us are in a way together - it just feels like too much separation between your fellow man in what's being discussed here.

We have to question our assumptions.

Is what we see in front of our eyes, what we touch with our fingertips reality? Is all that matters to you reality? Or perhaps reality is of a larger scope? Is my perfection perfection? Is everybody pursuing their perfection perfection? Would it be more desirable to pursue perfection as individuals or together?

Personally, I can agree with the vague statement that the pursuit of "perfection" is in a way "perfection". But I would much rather a world in which we pursued it together, instead of everybody doing their own thing. I don't see everybody doing what they think is perfect as perfect at all.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlahISuck View Post
Personally, I can agree with the vague statement that the pursuit of "perfection" is in a way "perfection". But I would much rather a world in which we pursued it together, instead of everybody doing their own thing. I don't see everybody doing what they think is perfect as perfect at all.
Then is a world where everyone believes the same exact thing perfect?

If you say yes, I give you this:

Kane and God

This was a turning point for me when I was deciding to leave the Christian religion. I learned that Kane was the only one in the group of humans who had enough wisdom to speak on an even level with God. They disagreed many times on various issues, but still were able to talk evenly with one another.

When Kane killed Abel, it is believed that he did so just because he was angry. When you look at how rational Kane's manner of thinking was, this doesn't make sense. So, there enters a new possibility. Truly, Abel sacrificed absolutely nothing. He gave up the life of another instead of giving something from himself while Kane, on the other hand, toiled endlessly day after day. Kane traded something of his own for something for himself - God's favor. Abel sacrificed something not his own in return for something for himself - God's favor.

God favored Abel, who did not give proper balance in return for something equally given. It generated imbalance. The universe, already struggling to keep a weak balance required once God created Hell, was tipping too far into the realm of imbalance. So Kane, knowing that an eye had to be given for an eye, regretfully killed his brother. This equaled the life Abel sacrificed and restored balance. God, angry at this action, punished Kane even though Kane only did this due to God's ignorance.

God believed that he was right - he was always right. He believed that anyone that didn't agree with him should be punished until they DO agree with him or else destroyed if they still choose not to see things his way. Kane saw that this mindset was destroying the universe and pushed against it. God never admitted he was wrong. He never would. Once the end of times...end, he'll completely destroy everyone and everything that is not the same as him.

In the end, he'll be amongst clones of himself. When he finally realizes that, being amongst clones of himself, he is actually alone, he will see how wrong he is. By then, it will be too late. For by having everyone believe the same thing, everyone became the same person. And "they" "were" alone.

----

Now, it's not to say my version of the story is 100% what happened, but when I came to that conclusion, I stopped desiring everyone to be the same or for everything to work in one sense of perfection. It was the first step along my path to becoming an individualist.
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:36 PM
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Then is a world where everyone believes the same exact thing perfect?
No? Just because I disagree somewhat with a statement doesn't mean that you take that I agree completely with its negative.

Also, that's counter to human nature. We're not robots. I am thinking about what would be common to us all according to our nature though, thanks for pointing that out.

Also, you're not supposed to question God. Irrationality is not an issue.
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