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Michael McMahon

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Everything posted by Michael McMahon

  1. Yes it's true that we learn social cues from others. I meant it more in the cognitive sense of "empathy" rather than the interactive and moral sense. In other words a spiritual understanding of others rather than an interpersonal one. There's a difficult and open-ended mind-body problem in philosophy and so there'll be a subjective element in how we comprehend others. In order to fully learn from others we first have to reach a threshold of shared understanding. If someone views my consciousness as part of my soul like religions do while others view me as part of a group like humanists would then we'll have difficulties in communication. Understanding everyday consciousness requires some non-religious faith beliefs that we hold without immediate physical evidence such as having trust that our memory is real. When these subconscious beliefs are impaired then it might limit their understanding not only of themselves but also of others. A reduction in self-awareness will cause a proportionate decrease in awareness towards other people. If you're not self-aware then it follows that you can't be aware of others.
  2. If panpsychist notions that every photon has an infinitesimal trace of consciousness are correct then it'd follow that trees and plants also have a momentary, trace-level experience of ethereal time. Did an omniscient God create insects? Or were they created only out of the chaos of physical processes and natural selection? Or else were they created independently by the quantum randomness and incomprehensible infinitude of time? If there's debate that quantum mechanics is involved in consciousness or the brain then quantum mechanics could also apply to evolution. If the many worlds theory of quantum mechanics is correct and everything that can happen does happen an infinite number of times then there's a timeline in the multiverse with the mind of a fish or the concentration of an eagle! Animal minds in the multiverse!
  3. I’m just guessing but a possible challenge with empathy is to keep understanding that other people are dissimilar to you while at the same time being able to read their emotions by comparing them to and through yourself. We only experience our own emotions and that’s all we’ve got when we try to relate to others on an intuitive and personal level. In order to completely and emotionally understand others we first have to be emotionally self-aware of ourselves. To fully appreciate kindness and gratefulness we need to be ever cognisant that there’s an opposite emotion of anger and meanness. Even without an empathy deficit we’d always struggle to fully understand the mindset of evil unless we’re evil ourselves. We’d have to be infinite to truly understand every single persons cognitive makeup! What would your emotional state have to be if instead it were you that had said it in their exact manner? I suppose it’s somewhat of a balancing act. If they’re too separate and different from you then they’re simply incomprehensible and mysterious and can only be interpreted on a distant and rational level. Although if it becomes too easy to emotionally relate to them then one might misjudge them to form an inaccurate preconceived image without appreciating their changeability and unfamiliarity. It’s further complicated in the way that our personality doesn’t just exist in the present moment but is affected by each of our unique history which is largely unkowable unless they inform you of some of it. I notice we can learn a lot from people who have might have social traits that are the opposite of our own. There’s also the extent of people who we can empathise with. For example we can build up a mental picture of long-time friends and acquaintances. Or we can go a step further and try a bit to spiritually conceptualise the multitudes of strangers walking past us on the street. Another aspect I was thinking about is that society and culture changes radically through different generations and so psychological traits couldn’t be as genetically transferable as physical traits. For example an extrovert 200 years ago would've had very different metaphysical beliefs such that if they still alive today then maybe they'd be introverted. Thus how can extroversion be genetically passed down when much of a person's social confidence is related to the current culture? "Depersonalization can consist of a detachment within the self, regarding one's mind or body, or being a detached observer of oneself." If someone feels detached from themselves then they'd probably struggle to relate to others who hold such a different metaphysical perspective. Therefore how connected would this symptom be to those with Aspergers or autism who struggle with social awareness? Is there some overlap sometimes? Derealisation in the short-term might cause anxiety but if left untreated could long-term derealisation be connected to schizophrenia? This would be in the sense that a belief that the world is unreal will eventually trickle-down and disturb the rest of their belief system. The longer the derealisation lasts the more they'd have to try to reconcile it with the rest of their memory and cognition. Perhaps derealisation and depersonalisation lead to different symptoms depending on how long they last for.
  4. Civilians in war time might join the army of the aggressor to engage in evil actions. Yet during peacetime there'll only be a minuscule fraction of the population that will engage in criminal violence. So there must a small segment of the population in the average country who'll ordinarily be cooperative and law-abiding despite being a slightly amoral. However if they felt they'd get away with it as they might during a victorious war then they might be tempted to engage in evil. I think this shows that people good and bad are guided by the same evolutionary instincts to avoid doing wrong in case of punishment. Even if someone has an immoral mindset and wanted to commit a crime they still might think it's not worth the risk. This example is doesn't support general deterrence because that's about warning other criminals rather than the individual who actually perpetrated whatever crime is in question. It may however show that some slight element of punishment can ward off malevolent intentions from apathetic individuals. Our subconscious human psychology evolved over millennia and so we're hardwired to be wary of retaliation. If we removed punishment altogether as an option for criminal rehabilitation then it might not change our evolved cost-benefit analysis of committing crime immediately but after a long period of time it might eventually lead to sinister individuals being habituated into thinking they can afford to commit crimes. For instance if I were to hypothetically think about carrying out a random assault on the street then I'd simply automatically assume there'd be repercussions in jail time even if I knew nothing about the current jail time statistics for assault. Contrastingly if I somehow felt there'd be no real consequences and for whatever reason I wanted to hit a particular somebody then it might result in people actually accepting the risk to act cunningly and selfishly. Just as some people are truly immoral and deliberately evil, other people will be truly amoral in not being bothered at all whether they do good or bad. Individual deterrence is compatible with rehabilitation because amoral people can be deterred from committing crime due not only to negative incentives like confinement but also to positive incentives such as the gratefulness a criminal might feel from being forgiven, opportunities in both their career and personal growth achieved from education, or finding spiritual and familial well-being in doing good. Individual deterrence might not always prevent immorality since people might evade capture but it might reduce lazy amorality to a relatively greater extent. "If you call someone immoral, you are saying that person knows better. If you call him amoral, you are saying that person does wrong but doesn't understand that it is wrong. It can be a fine line, other times it's clear: If a giant wave turns your boat over, that wave isn't being mean, it's amoral. If another boat rams into you and does the same thing, that is an immoral act, especially if the immoral captain laughs instead of helping you out of the water." (vocabulary) Wiki: "Individual deterrence is the aim of punishment to discourage the offender from criminal acts in the future. The belief is that when punished, offenders recognise the unpleasant consequences of their actions on themselves and will change their behaviour accordingly. General deterrence is the intention to deter the general public from committing crime by punishing those who do offend. When an offender is punished by, for example, being sent to prison, a clear message is sent to the rest of society that behaviour of this sort will result in an unpleasant response from the criminal justice system. Most people do not want to end up in prison and so they are deterred from committing crimes that might be punished that way." Habituation: "the diminishing of an innate response to a frequently repeated stimulus."
  5. https://news.sky.com/story/kate-handles-tarantula-and-bird-as-she-and-prince-william-meet-student-nurses-who-stepped-up-during-pandemic-in-northern-ireland-12421340 This puts us in an awkward position. If Kate Middleton can do it then we'll all have to do it! I suppose if there's an initial fear as you go to pick up the spider then the your stress will spiral upwards due to cognitive dissonance and you won't feel up to following it through. If your trepidation level is below a certain threshold then you might be able to withstand the anxiety even if it increases as you pick it up. I remember kayaking with my cousin and we were about to dive off a pier into the water in the harbour. I felt hesitant and told him that evolution didn't favour people who like to jump off high things. Anyway I jumped in but he was laughing about my statement for a long time afterwards. Likewise maybe our instinctive impulse is telling us to be slightly wary of weird, unexpected creatures and to habitually, passively avoid them without actually forcing us to do so. That is to say we can overcome a mild, natural disinclination whenever we need to. In my diving analogy our ancestors probably didn't need to do much risky diving but of course it'd sometimes have been evolutionarily advantageous such as when they needed to escape from a threat or manoeuvre across territory in order to migrate. So evolution is full of competing demands that could contradict our natural emotional state. When we come back to the topic of spiders we can say that being fearless against insects and discerning towards which ones were and weren't poisonous would've been a helpful trait if you needed to camp outside for example. Thus you wouldn't have to waste energy fretting about an innocuous species of spider close by.
  6. "Interestingly, almost all (95.3 percent) of the participants stated that men were more likely to be creepy than women. Participants rated the following as the most likely characteristics of a creepy person: The person had unkempt hair. The person had very pale skin. The person was dressed oddly." - ideas ted com I've acquired a slight sun tan so I think I'm in the clear and hopefully no one will notice any other of these characteristics in me.
  7. Yes that's fine and I won't post about it again. (Just to backtrack a little I didn't mean atheism or theism were sources of depression as both groups are perfectly happy; merely that being confused might add to someone's uncertainty.) Yes I wasn't trying to imply there weren't depressed atheists; just that there are also many happy atheists. (I'm not extending the debate on theism/atheism and am only clarifying a misunderstanding in a previous post. I didn't add any new information.)
  8. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=be7MVQ0uaWs Father Ted - Shaft - Radiohead Atheists might try to counteract death anxiety by always engaging in mindfulness so as to concentrate on the present moment and not long-term death. Atheists aren't depressed in the way that they're able to view death as a meaningful incentive to live their life to the fullest. Some theists believe in heaven while others believe in reincarnation or else a combination of both heaven and reincarnation. Others adopt a myriad of tactics such as surrounding yourself with friends, fulfilling life ambitions or material pursuits in order to concentrate fully on them and distract their attention away from worrying about death. Yet another method is to decide to think about death only when your death is imminent where you'll be at your most attentive stage. One more approach is to passively accept whatever happens in a wait-and-see manner which might be used by agnostics. But if you spent too long contemplating eternal oblivion without having any personal strategy to overcome it then that might also lead to fear or depression. What happens after death is beyond our control and we're powerless to to stop or alter the outcome. Therefore spiralling death anxiety that gets worse and worse could ironically lead suicidal ideation if you approach death pessimistically. If you view death as meaningless then unfortunately it might lead you to think that life is meaningless. Although there are lots of other unrelated sources of depression.
  9. I agree that a person who has a terminal condition isn't delusional if they're suicidal. But I'm not sure in such circumstances should we label their specific suicidal ideation as depression seeing as the primary source of their pain is physical deterioration. Or else should we use the term depression to simply describe all people's suicidal ideation irrespective of other unique factors? For example its possible for someone with a debilitating condition to be suicidal out of extreme body aches rather than finding their life meaningless. That is to say if their physical condition improved they'd no longer be suicidal in this hypothetical example. Maybe it's most accurate to say that such a person's suicidal ideation arises from a combination of different reasons. Perhaps the confusion is that despair (such as a poor prognosis of a progressive disease) and depression (as in finding your existential purpose absurd) are closely related but non-identical adjectives that frequently co-occur in certain patients. I'd concur with that assessment. I think depression doesn't have to be related to a person's particular faith or the strength of their belief in God. Nor does depression have to be related to atheism or other metaphysical issues. Maybe sometimes it is and other times not. It might occur solely out of the unpredictability of our emotions as caused by the reasons mentioned: It may even be caused by relationship or work issues rather than spiritual concerns: https://edition.cnn.com/travel/article/france-chef-michelin-withdrawal-scli-intl/index.html Just like paranoia it might be possible to think that God is against you in terms of the problem of evil and the theodicy of victimisation or else that the impersonal universe is uncaring and unhelpful towards you: "Dystheists may themselves be theists or atheists, and in the case of either, concerning the nature of the Abrahamic God, will assert that God is not good, and is possibly, although not necessarily, malevolent." (Wiki)
  10. One way to build up your resistance to arachnophobia might be to start small and habituate yourself to more innocuous looking insects beforehand. Indeed the attached images makes me look somewhat timid compared to those who can handle spiders and snakes in their hands! If you can touch a snail's shell then you can try increasing your confidence by touching their slimy body. A ladybird looks endearing even though they're a real insect when they open their stylish wings.
  11. https://www.google.ie/amp/s/ancailinrua.com/2014/01/03/donal-walsh-and-suicide-whats-missing-from-the-debate-and-where-do-we-go-from-here/amp/ Maybe if you’ve a personal relationship with the patient where you know the advice will be well-received then it might not be a bad attitude. Expressing a cheerfully optimistic and mischievously stoic sentiment to overcome your difficulties could help if it was in a very friendly context. But in my opinion the risk is that it depends on the tone of the statement. It might be misunderstood in a busy environment with innumerable interactions between staff and patients. Remember there are countless psychiatric hospitals and patients in any country. Adopting this confident mindset as official policy could create an unnecessarily tense or awkward atmosphere in certain situations.
  12. Yes that’s true. That species looks mysterious and intriguing. Although if I met one of them dancing on the footpath where there was pulsating trance vibes in the background, then I might find the brainwashing music creepy but not the spider!
  13. Wow that’s inspiring how you recovered from encountering such a huge species of spider. I’d almost be tempted to avoid countries like Brazil and Australia in case I meet their ginormous insects! But if I’d a free ticket I’d still go for the sun and scenery! Maybe there are traces of critical periods where being familiar with such insects from a young age can lessen fear.
  14. That’s interesting. Maybe seeing other people being unafraid of spiders can be reassuring. Although the image below unsettles me. It’s ironic given that the big spiders are sometimes harmless compared to the poisonous bites of smaller ones. Yet the fact it’s bigger than a hamster immediately and subconsciously makes me compare the spider to a small mammal. I’m accustomed to viewing pets like hamsters as marginally sensory though in a non-rational, pain-free and non-memorising way. Increasing the scales of an average spider by a few dozen is disconcerting because it’s no longer fly-like and I’ve to momentarily reassess the insect. The weirdness of the insect compared to the shape of a little mammal potentially creates cognitive dissonance. Maybe I could view a hamster as thoroughly insentient to minimise my aversion to similar sized insects! Although then it’d be difficult to understand a spectrum of awareness from a hamster to a rabbit and so forth. I’ve seen mice and even rats on forest trails without them bothering me. Rats may have dangerous micro-organisms as seen during medieval times in the bubonic plague. Perhaps that could be another factor of our hesitation towards spiders and snakes where our evolved immune system might unconsciously bias us against unusual creatures. Personally I’m not creeped out much by rats. But I can understand how the contrast within a rat’s morphology is strange. Some of the rat resembles a harmless hamster while the elongated tail is like a worm or a little snake. The problem is there’s quite a gulf between our interpretation of whatever life is in a hamster and a worm.
  15. Some criticism of suicide is generalised. It includes other confusing issues that aren't directly relevant towards voluntary self-initiated suicide itself. Therefore we've to disentangle each topic. Firstly there's the allegation that vulnerable people could be pressured by ill-intentioned people into suicide. The trouble I have with this argument is that mental health services extend beyond those with severe mental illnesses. Therefore any disabled or elderly person that was hypothetically being bullied into suicide would be equally entitled to attend counselling services. Psychologists can obviously work with mental health difficulties arising in both able-bodied and disabled people. Secondly assisted-suicide and euthanasia are separate to the debate on suicide itself. What I will say is that assisted suicide actually reminds me of self-defence policy more than euthanasia. For example, knives and guns are banned in hospitals for security reasons rather than solely suicide prevention. Therefore providing someone with a weapon for suicide which is legal to own at home isn't the same as euthanasia. After all the person is always free not to use the weapon on themselves. Therefore the difference between assisted suicide and self-suicide appears to be just the availability of lethal instruments. One might argue that taking lethal medication is quicker and less intimidating than other forms of suicide. Although all death is equally painful and really the different methods of suicide are just variations on the spectrum of pain intensity and duration. I can only guess that a quick death will be momentarily excruciating while a slow death is less severe but more prolonged. The only possible risk I can think of with assisted suicide is one of tone where a person wasn't sufficiently encouraged to live. However this is subjective and dependent on the patient's specific personal situation and of those around them. I don't see a slippery slope with assisted suicide because the patient is free not to use the weapon as I've said previously. I'm not necessarily advocating assisted suicide and my initial post was about suicide prevention. Perhaps a caveat I might have with euthanasia is that the mind and subconscious might have ways to slowly adapt to extreme physical impairment. So in my opinion a baby born with severe disability or a non-verbal patient can't really automatically be said to be in unbearable pain. Besides that point I'm a bit unsure at the moment and am neither advocating euthanasia nor particularly opposed to voluntary forms of euthanasia. https://www.government.nl/topics/euthanasia/euthanasia-and-newborn-infants Just to mention that the assisted suicide debate might be germane to patients who are fully decided on suicide while euthanasia is often discussed in the context of paralysis where the person has physical difficulty with the action of suicide.
  16. Supposedly it would be harder to move with 8 legs than 4. They’re moving chaotically while arachnophobes might misinterpret their motion as if they were moving intentionally. We mistakenly think it takes more conscious willpower for a spider to move than a quadruped when in reality they’re moving deterministically and automatically. That mismatch might create a creepy vibe.
  17. I’m not disputing a functional fear of venomous insects. Humans originated in Africa and then migrated around the globe. Spiders are poisonous in southern Africa. The Sahara has dangerous vipers and cobras. So perhaps a fear of them is ingrained through primordial human evolution. Yet spiders and snakes have been harmless for millennia in temperate climate zones like Ireland where there are no snakes. So over time the initial physical, defensive fear has morphed into a creepy vibe. We can get angry if a pet dog bites and hit back in deterrence yet we don’t have the same frustrated sensation with insects. Hence a survivable insect bite could still induce a disproportionate amount of stress.
  18. “Overall, schizophrenia is about 3.6 times as common among people with autism as it is in controls, the researchers found.” https://www.spectrumnews.org/news/schizophrenia-prevalence-may-threefold-higher-people-autism/ Some symptoms of schizophrenia: “Delusions. Hallucinations. Disorganized thinking (speech). Extremely disorganized or abnormal motor behavior. Negative symptoms.” Some symptoms of autism: Abnormal Tone of Voice Avoidance of Eye Contact or Poor Eye Contact Behavioral Disturbances Deficits in Language Comprehension Inappropriate Social Interaction Intense Focus on One Topic Lack of Empathy Problems With Two-Way Conversation Repeating Words or Phrases I notice that the symptoms of schizophrenia are superficially the opposite of autism; as if they were at opposing ends of a spectrum. For example the disorganised thinking style in schizophrenia contrasts with the obsessive and intense focus in autism. A complex word salad is wholly different to repeating simple words and phrases. I’m wondering if autism has a lowered understanding of mental empathy then is it like schizophrenia has an excess of that empathy? It might be as if a schizophrenic patient can project their mind too easily on their environment and attach themselves to strange beliefs. So then it’d be understandable that variations in that spectrum would result in hybrid symptoms like the link above. I’m not an expert so I don’t know. I understand empathy in this medical sense is all about a self-aware theory of mind and not the usual sense of the word concerning the morality of someone’s behaviour.
  19. (This is an extract from a piece I wrote elsewhere. I only intended to write an improvised paragraph but more ideas kept coming to me. I didn’t research anything. Could someone tell if anything I said makes genetic sense or if it’s wrong!?) As I said before nonphysical doesn’t mean nonlogical. If something was spiritually created that doesn’t translate to “anything goes”. It doesn’t mean that it was created by a particular God at a specific time for this stated prophetic reason. Nonphysical doesn’t mean nonobjective and subjective either. Much like the existence of eternal hell for nonbelievers can still be defeated solely on logical grounds of disproportionality without even having to rely on materialistic arguments, the same would hold true for other nonphysical issues. So nonphysical claims would require probabilistic evidence and logical deductions of some kind which can in theory be open to philosophical rebuttal. So I don’t think the concept of impersonal or spiritual intelligence is completely out of bounds. I’m not endorsing anything in specific and I know the issue is fraught with controversy and theistic bias. I’m not an expert in this area. All I’m saying is that it might turn out that there was slight mystery in how it all began; be it the origin of life or the Big Bang... Non-human species are not rational and introspective. At best some species show limited self-awareness like being able to identify themselves in a mirror. So a sentient lion can be motivated to survive by the hedonistic impulses of eating tasty zebras and reproduction even though it’s non-rational. But some species are not only non-rational but also lack both self-interest and consciousness. When you’re in an endless forest it can feel spiritual in the way the trees are neither dead like a rock or alive like an animal; as if they were created like an art piece. A tree or an insect is a biological entity but it’s inert and can hardly be said to be motivated by its own survival. It only survives because of its hardwired genetic instructions. So that begs the question of what motivated the genes? To say that the genes want to survive because any genetic blueprint that didn’t want to survive was simply killed off seems circular and far-removed from technological modelling. We’d never say an airplane was built that way because all other designs crashed the plane. Think of an insect’s exoskeleton or the outer bark of a tree: any internal organ change would require simultaneous changes in the outer layers to accommodate a change in size. Animal organs are so complex that minor alterations would likely need a cascade of changes in its interdependent systems... No I’m not saying that evolution is wrong or that survival of the fittest isn’t involved; but maybe there’s mysterious ingredients and extra processes that we’re not familiar with. People can change their own physique through mental effort like dieting and exertion so for all we know there could even be an element of self-design where the changing mental attributes of an animal had a trickledown effect over the millennia on its nervous system and physical structure. If a cheetah knew it must get faster to chase down more agile prey, could that subconscious information eventually affect the genetics of its offspring? If our conscious mind can somehow move our body then the same would be true in a residual way for a non-rational mind. In a metaphorical way they’d have created themselves out of the endless abyss of existence. For instance it’s not inconceivable that their nervous system could subconsciously simulate desired movements which could affect their future progeny. Hypothetically that specific process wouldn’t be externally designed by random mutation or God but their own self-design. I’m not sure how a holistic theory could be tested; unless there were genes that somehow worked by suppressing previous genes in order to limit the complexity. Or else if there were genes that functioned like digital tracers that mimic the outpouring of conscious information at certain bodily locations and in doing so continuously tracks the growth of the organism. The genes would be like multidimensional shapes or geometrical coordinates that can open or close. They’d selectively release and close off growth and supplies of information. Therefore if the genes continuously modified the expanding growth of an animal that might imply the genes have more information than the initial blueprint would imply. Although I’m unsure what a biological version of a status report back to the genes to give updates on the development would look like. Another way to put it is where the genes had some self-awareness of spatial volume and the passage of time which would allow it to alter the gene activation in response to the environment. Are the specific genes being used wholly determined from the outset of the organisms creation or is there any display of feedback while the work is in progress to vary the genes that are employed? For instance the map of the Empire State building that shows all of it’s rooms, structure and content will be immense because of the sheer size of the building. But the instruction manual that shows the stages of how to build each section of the empire state building should be exponentially larger than that final map we just mentioned. After all it’s harder to construct something than it is to observe the finished piece. So if the genes only had slightly more information than the final phenotype that would again be an indicator of hidden simulated information. I’ll give a warning to say I haven’t fully investigated the above statements and my intuitions might be wrong. I’m not a geneticist so I wouldn’t know where you’d have to look. I understand there’s aspects we don’t fully understand yet like epigenetics and mysterious junk DNA. Is junk DNA chaotic, unintelligible rubbish or primordial rough work that’s so complicated we can’t understand it. When I said the endless abyss of existence I perhaps meant it in the notion of an infinite absurdity.
  20. I think people are often afraid of spiders or snakes but not always both. These species are very different from each other so they’re usually not equally frightening. I’ve had to capture so many spiders around the house that I’m no longer too frightened by them. I can begin to appreciate their eccentric nature at a distance. But if they come close I confess I’d be very alert. I’ve never had much aversion to images of snakes. They just remind me of a large version of lizards. That picture is one I took abroad on holidays. Although I’ve never seen them in real life so I can’t say for certain how I’d respond. I get wry amusement when friends get scared of snakes on TV but I know that’s hypocritical because if I ever saw an actual tarantula I’m sure I’d be intimidated!
  21. I don’t know. Maybe a sadist wants to feel like they own and possess whoever they intend to belittle. An extreme example is the violence displayed in slavery movies where it seemed both sadistic in terms of megalomania and psychopathic with regard to the exploitation.
  22. Yes that’s certainly true. Being grateful and humble is indeed virtuous. I suppose an example of what a little bit of arrogance might be is if someone were to correct your sentence online by saying “as Phi alluded to”! (joke) One way we are limited is that we can’t always control the outcome of a particular course of action. We sometimes have to be adaptable in order to update and revise our plans if anything goes wrong or to retry something we failed at. Patience can be challenging sometimes. The ends don’t always justify the means! So perhaps we have to somehow try to balance a process oriented approach in the present moment with those general goals that we’re trying to achieve in the long-term. “A process person finds the joy in the journey, not the destination for example. A process person also emphasizes the importance of the discernment or discussion over the outcome... An outcome person tends to focus on the destination instead of the journey. An outcome person emphasizes the final decision as more important than the steps taken to achieve the outcome decision.” -igrc
  23. “For pride to work, it must be paired with humility — a humility to know that no matter our skill set, each of us depends on what others have to offer. Since none of us can be an expert in all areas, we must be humble enough to recognize that we cannot be great at everything; there will be times when we need to rely on others. People who follow this advice are the ones for whom pride, like gratitude and compassion, becomes a virtue, not a vice.” https://ideas.ted.com/pride-can-be-a-virtue-but-it-needs-to-be-the-right-kind-of-pride/amp/ I sometimes view the words pride and humility to be like a qualifier phrase. So whether pride and humility are virtues or vices would depend on what exactly it is that you’re being proud or humble about. If someone is proud about an evil crime, then pride is obviously a vice in that instance. But I notice the odd time in movies that to make a villain more relatable they endow the character with a sort of nihilistic edge; as if the character had a distorted and warped version of humility. Overall I think it’s good and encouraging to be humble and occasionally it can be acceptable to be proud about something or other. “Qualifiers and intensifiers are words or phrases that are added to another word to modify its meaning, either by limiting it (He was somewhat busy) or by enhancing it (The dog was very cute).” -writingcenter.unc.edu “There’s millions of galaxies of hundreds of millions of stars and we’re a speck on one. That’s us; lost in space. A cop, you, me: who notices?” Tom Cruise justifies his job as a hitman by way of nihilistic apathy in the movie “Collateral”.
  24. “Isometric exercise is a type of low-impact exercise that involves straining your muscles without moving or bending your joints. A prime example is holding your body in a plank position – you stay at the top of a push up without bending your elbows. Isometric exercises are good for maintaining your strength and stability. For instance, if you train by doing a plank pose, it can help you hold a plank position for an extended period of time, but won't necessarily help you do more pushups. Isometric exercise is often recommended for people who arerecovering from an injury, or who suffer from joint pain like arthritis. Evidence is growing that isometric exercise may help lower blood pressure as well.” https://www.google.ie/amp/s/www.insider.com/what-is-the-difference-between-isometric-isotonic-and-isokinetic-exercises%3famp Exercise is healthy for us even though the exertion can get strenuous or tiring. So it’s counterintuitive that something good for us in the long-term can be painful in the short-term. But the self-sustaining biological body would innately know this concept as it’s designed from evolution to protect us. So I think it’s logically possible for the body to involuntarily self-induce pain of this kind in order to recover from or prevent an injury and to better withstand the ageing process. The body itself could consciously simulate the intense pain of exercise without the external stimuli. “Some bodyweight exercises have been shown to benefit not just the young, but the elderly as well. Older people undertaking bodyweight exercises benefit through increased muscle mass, increased mobility, increased bone density, decreased depression and improved sleep habits.” - Wikipedia
  25. I think muscle strength is inherently related to maximum heart rate. For example, if someone injured or weakened their legs then they won’t ever be able to exert themselves to the same extent. But if they can’t exert themselves as much, then their maximum heart rate has been effectively reduced because they won’t be able to run as hard in the future. So this relationship is of an indirect nature. The runner vs sprinter comment is an analogy for how the body might be inadvertently weak in one area but strong in another. The difference is that running is voluntary pain that stops as soon as the race is over while chronic pain is involuntary and more prolonged. “To best sustain endurance activity, two systems must be effectively coordinated: ventilation and locomotion. Evidence has long suggested that these two mammalian rhythms are linked, yet determinants and implications of locomotor–respiratory coupling (LRC) continue to be investigated.” https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40362-014-0020-4 It’s quite a long article but it demonstrates a connection between breathing patterns and walking speed.
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