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Michael McMahon

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Michael McMahon last won the day on August 17

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  1. This is probably wrong but I'll ask just to clear up anyone else's misguided thoughts. Could the dead pathogens of the Covid virus vaccine be contagious? If so could those who weren't vaccinated develop residual herd immunity from dealing not only with former patients but also from interacting with vaccinated friends?
  2. The mental health system tends to be secular even though this can be inconsistent. A mentally ill person who is religious can request to leave the psychiatric ward to visit the church. Or sometimes there's a shrine or religious room elsewhere in the hospital. However the clergy often don't make direct visits to psychiatric wards. Psychiatrists might view this as a slippery slope where mental illnesses could make a patient gullible to non-medical treatment. However it's possible within a free society that depressed people could consent to religious treatment. The difficulty is that it's best to do so voluntarily given our freedom to pursue different faiths. A major problem with moral preaching is that mental health systems have many patients confined to the ward involuntarily. As such it could appear doubly dismissive to not only be confined against your free will but to also be morally criticised. For example it's true that criticism could help certain patients but then again they often aren't able to leave the ward if they disagree with the criticism. As such a blancing act can be very risky because staff and patients can be very diverse. For example some patients might not even get on well with other patients when everyone is stressed. So the patient's background might help staff determine the relevance of spiritual guidance.
  3. Even if a Euler hypothesis on gravity is flawed or unprovable it might still be an interesting area of study simply to explore the mathematics and poetry of it.
  4. Cool! "Nagel uses the metaphor of bats to clarify the distinction between subjective and objective concepts. Because bats are mammals, they are assumed to have conscious experience." wiki One difficulty with assessing the sentience of animals is that they're irrational for often polar opposite reasons. For example we could say a lion isn't fully self-aware because they're dazed after all the carnivorous violence. Yet we could also say a herbivore isn't as conscious simply because it spends an inordinate amount of time in a tranquil state. Likewise we can't always tell immediately why spiders and snakes are non-conscious simply because they're completely different from one another. You'd need to philosphically analyse a species to determine the exact source of its insentience. Maybe it has a trait to such a high extent it becomes ad absurdum. How could a random spider that cannibalizes its own youth have any modicum of awareness? As such you'd almost have to rely on faith that such creatures aren't sentient even if they appear to be more than a mere robot. "Spider cannibalism is the act of a spider consuming all or part of another individual of the same species as food. In the majority of cases a female spider kills and eats a male before, during, or after copulation." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spider_cannibalism
  5. A knowledge that men and women are equal with opposing strengths, along with a temporary or subconscious sense of masculine superiority?!
  6. Stoicism is a complex topic because masculinity is itself a form of hysteria! Thus people will be stoic in radically different ways. It might even be possible to be stoically effeminate given the vagueness and open-endedness of the definitions! Taking embarrassment like a man is the root of the paradox! Stoicism is a virtue but any virtue can be distorted. Could stoicism ever be so good as to be evil?! Death can be a very scary topic in spite of the copious amount of resources we have compared to historical generations. It's logically the case that no matter how worried or upset you are there'll have been millions of people who died before you. Yet this can be viewed in different ways. Should we gloat at the fact that we are but one of countless many who'll be killed? Here stoicism might seem a bit macho. Although trying to appreciate the fear of death in the context of others does seem charitable. There'll always be a subjective side to things!
  7. I might be wrong on this but if relativity is explained by the Earth's surface moving upwards to catch up with a thrown object, then it'd be like the normal force from the ground actually exceeds the conventional downwards force of Newtonian gravity.
  8. If gravity didn't exist, then nor would the normal force exist (upward force from ground). So to reconcile gravity as a contact force as opposed to an action at a distance would require an altered viewpoint on multiple forces. I once gave an example in the philosophical antirealism thread about the irregular rotation of the Earth somehow creating a downward Euler force to mimic gravity. In my lucid dreaming thread (profile blog) I recalled an experience of going up in an elevator and having the backpack increase in weight relative to the horizon. So I wasn't throwing the backpack upwards and rather I was going upwards in sync with the elevator floor. I don't know much about the maths or physics of Euler forces. So does anyone know any symbolic way to elaborate on fictitious forces like the Euler force so as to mimic gravity? For example you could think about a closed system like a rotating asteroid. What if you were going upwards in a lift on top of an asteroid?! "The Euler force is one of three fictitious forces found in rotating frames of reference, the others being the centrifugal and Coriolis forces. It depends on the angular acceleration of the rotating reference frame and the position of a particle in that frame." (conservapedia) (Use the search box and type "Euler" to see relevant posts.) https://thephilosophyforum.com/discussion/6006/anti-realism
  9. A hidden factor when we apply stoic masculine ideals to withstanding suicide is that the preparation time mentally ill patients have is often nothing. People can become hysterically anxious out of nowhere. The problem when we apply this standard from soldiers in battle is that while they're extremely brave they're much better able to psyche themselves up. So they know in advance that they'll have to fight possibly to the death. This forces them to almost become immanent in whatever form of spirituality they had to give them strength. But lets take the analogy of physical torture. Technically soldiers who die in battle experience far more pain than those who recovered from torture. But we can all agree that torture as a punishment could be far more destabilising because it's performed out of the context of a fight to the death. So in my view suicidal thoughts can also be destabilising simply because patients don't know if they need to fight to the death or if they'll survive. A lot of people don't tell themselves that they might be depressed next year and that they'd have to really meditate beforehand to survive! A risk factor when we use masculine phrases like "man up" is that some people aren't very resilient. This means you'd get away with this style of banter on an adventure holiday but not really with disadvantaged people. I agree that people can use masculine notions in a very well-intentioned way. Concepts like stoicism and solidarity can be very reassuring for males. Yet we don't want to exaggerate this too far. The culpability for criminality is similar for those from any background. Obviously I condemn crimes without discriminating on the perpetrators' personality type. Yet we do have to realise that some criminals can be insecure. So you don't want to distort someone's sense of self. No matter what virtues we ascribe to masculinity we must remember that it is the gender of every male. As such there's a very small risk that if you start implying that people aren't masculine to homeless or mentally ill people that a bad minority of them could start warping their own gender in a violent way. To reiterate I condemn all psychopathic and perverted criminals. I'm merely saying that we do need to be cautious about presenting social problems in an explicitly masculine way.
  10. In the fourth post p. 40 I mention a dream about seeing a spider move a tray of extra legs: https://onlinephilosophyclub.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=15514&start=585#p423904
  11. I'm upset that you've experienced such distress. I'm sad to hear about the death of your stepdad. That's a great attitude to have; very inspiring. I agree with you wholeheartedly. Sometimes I feel a need to engage in realpolitik with those who are critical of suicide. Suicidal people need help and so I don't want to reject those with mixed feelings about suicidal patients. In other words I support the existence of the mental health system where suicide isn't ignored. I suppose it's like the way bad publicity can be better than no publicity. That is to say even if staff are unsupportive of suicide they'll at the very least be supportive of your mental health. I also think of poorer countries where the mental health system must compete with lots of government departments for limited resources. Nonetheless there might be rare occasions where the help is outweighed by negativity if it comes at a cost of stigmatising suicide victims. So debating the topic of suicide can be a bit of a balancing act between asserting your point of view and tolerating those who disagree with you. I wish I could offer you better advice but I suppose it's best that I leave that to your friends and caregivers who know more about your circumstances. Nonetheless thank you for sharing your story. Yes you phrased that very well. Often times there's a multitude of factors that go into someone's decision to die by suicide. While I certainly condemn bullying I still don't want to vilify any bully to the extent of being wholly responsible for the death of a suicide victim. A complex maths question might create a small bit of stress and yet the simplicity of basic questions about our existence could create huge stress during mental illness. One way to think of it is that consciousness is holistic and so it's harder for the brain to work on the starting blocks rather than the abstractions. For example a lot of our personality is set by the time we reach adulthood but that doesn't mean it's impossible to transform yourself wholesale. Defying critical periods in our personal and spiritual growth is possible and merely entails a lot of pain. "In developmental psychology and developmental biology, a critical period is a maturational stage in the lifespan of an organism during which the nervous system is especially sensitive to certain environmental stimuli. If, for some reason, the organism does not receive the appropriate stimulus during this "critical period" to learn a given skill or trait, it may be difficult, ultimately less successful, or even impossible, to develop certain associated functions later in life." wik
  12. Perhaps this may be more noticeable in 4-legged spiders like the photo below. This creature was in my bathroom and there's some kind of non-verbal truce between us! So long as he doesn't move about I won't kick him out!
  13. One problem is that humility has a subjective component. For example each religion interprets the spiritual quality of humility in a slightly different way. Humility also changed over the centuries where gender roles have become more egalitarian. Humility is almost a postmodern concept in how rebelliousness can be viewed as humility as it is in the rap genre.
  14. I ordered a fish dish in a seaside restaurant in Tunisia. I no longer mind cutting up the squid because I'm accustomed to eating the ready-cut prawns. I can tell myself that the eyes and legs are just a superficial appearance of the same food. I ate one of the squiggly things and it was cooked in a nice sauce. I thought it could have been some kind of octopus tentacle. However I soon realised that it was too long to be such an entity. I procrastinated by eating a few mussels. However I became disconcerted by the spirals of the long, elongated fish. I decided to err on the side of caution by not eating any more of the wiggly things. I ordered some ice-cream to distract myself! I had asked a waiter what they were and he rather conveniently replied that he wasn't sure. Somehow I couldn't escape the baby snake analogy! When I got back to my room and researched it I realised that eels were part of the Tunisian cuisine! I thought I'd be more shocked but the tasty ice cream had mellowed me! "Are eels related to sea snakes? Judging by their anatomy, definitely not. Eels are actually fish (albeit typically longer) and are flatter than snakes. As marine animals and unlike reptiles, eels breathe underwater with their gills and fins, and therefore cannot survive outside of water." https://www.scuba.com/blog/explore-the-blue/difference-eels-sea-snakes/
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