I debate constantly with my Philosophy teacher, about whether progress is a good thing. He claims it degrades society, and generates misery. Indeed, there are far less suicides in underdeveloped countries. Stress and pressure to conform with an increasingly souless society drives people to the edge. Instead we should return to basic roots, working the land and putting the joy into life. There was more pleaseure for a true farmer in the 'good old days', than us moderners with technological distractions. We grow bored of such unneccessary trinkets soon, whereas the farm has worked his fingers to the bone to get his grain, which he needs to live. I say, that progress increases out quality of life. Fear, persecution and the unknown vanish under advancement. Medicine extends our lives and saves people. Computers and the internet make our lives easier, and allow the spread of enlightenment far quicker than a quill and ink. Thank God we don't rub soil into our wounds to heal them anymore, or burn so called 'witches'.
weirdal = new ptaq()
2nd September 2003
Without progress, you wouldn't have been able to tell us this, and I wouldn't have been able to respond.
Evolution is a form of progress, animal or tool. At least we can't deny that tools have evolved. These tools have helped the aforementioned farmers to get more grain from less space, and then grow something else in the extra area.
I'm afraid that if we were to take that insight alone to base your teacher's personality off, he would be someone very ungrateful for all of the comforts he has thanks to the progression of society. I suspect that if you offered him the life he has now, versus the life of a neanderthal hunter, he would err closely towards his current lifestyle. Either that, or he's more (or less) of a fool than I.
There are more suicides in developed countries because there's more of a chance to live in the first place. As such, the people are more grateful for their existence. I guess that works in favour of anti-progression in a way, but it also points out that you're eliminating one form of death with the downside of raising the mortality rate anyway. Similar logic applies to the past - There are more people now, so of course there are going to be more suicides. That's logic.
I would ask this teacher what he thinks about the fact we have progressed enough to be able to use language. The fact he's able to tell you his thoughts is accepting progression. There's no harm in being blissfully ignorant, but there's no point either.
Fire Legion;3368537I debate constantly with my Philosophy teacher, about whether progress is a good thing. [/QUOTE] It is a good thing.Fire Legion;3368537He claims it degrades society, and generates misery. [/QUOTE] This has nothing to do with progress. The Age of Enlightenment brought so many new inventions, ideas, opinions, in a word, progress. Was society bad back then? No.I don' t belive in contemporary medicine, but I am weird. [QUOTE=Fire Legion;3368537]Thank God we don't rub soil into our wounds to heal them anymore, or burn so called 'witches'.Fire Legion;3368537Indeed, there are far less suicides in underdeveloped countries. Stress and pressure to conform with an increasingly souless society drives people to the edge. [/QUOTE] Look at underdeveloped countries. Are they happy? Just as I thought. [QUOTE=Fire Legion;3368537]Instead we should return to basic roots, working the land and putting the joy into life. There was more pleaseure for a true farmer in the 'good old days', than us moderners with technological distractions.Good old days. Good old days? I have never seen a farmer 20.000 years old. He can speak about the "good old days". A farmer who is 80 years old had the benefits brought by prgress in his "good old days". [QUOTE=Fire Legion;3368537]Medicine extends our lives and saves people.
I do. Every friday at 9 pm. You can join me if you want.
Progress is good. Not all progress, but most.
And yes, I believe a society can perfectly well be advanced and happy at the same time.
Ask your teacher if he'd prefer being a peasant with a life-expectancy of about 50 years, no freedom whatsoever and 12 hours of very hard work per day and no access to education in the medieval ages :)
To claim "progress" in general is bad seems to me to be just rather silly. Go back several hundred years and conditions were no less miserable than they are today...far from it, especially in countries like ours that are supposed to have been "degraded". Such arguments seem to be based on a rather rose-tinted view of the past. Now I don't know in which "good old days" these farm labourers were meant to be having such a good time, but it seems pretty dubious to me.
Progress is what brought the humankind from caves to houses with electricity and television. Progress is needed as the people and the society change constantly though making progress just because of progress isn't wise.
Some progress is good, some is not. Progress that makes life simpler for us is a great thing that can make our lives hard for a brief time but only because change is hard. What I mean is that most of the time when someone makes something better, other then the creator, no one knows how to use it, but even then is quickly fixed. How progress sucks. It sucks in the way that some progress can be used to destroy humanity in truly horrid ways, best example, WW II where mass killing of some sort was used in killing many people in a short amount of time and generally causing hell.
Just like anything, anywhere, ever, progress is good and bad. Sure you may think without computers we would be happier but how happy would we be if we were still eating our own poop? In everything we do we are making progress in one way or another. A farmer who works all day is making progress as he learns.
One of my favorite quotes from Contact.
"Palmer Joss: Is the world fundamentally a better place because of science and technology? We shop at home, we surf the Web... at the same time, we feel emptier, lonelier and more cut off from each other than at any other time in human history..."