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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by danzibr View Post
    ...pretty sure we fear things because that's Mother Nature's way of saving don't do this. We fear heights and venomous things, bodily harm....

    When I was a new plumbing apprentice (before I learned to smile and nod at idiocy), my foreman told me to do something stupid (and likely against OSHA guidelines), and he must have perceived my hesitancy because he then asked:

    "What? You afraid of heights?"

    To which I replied:

    "Why yes, also bullets, fire, electricity, poison, sharp edges, and pretty much anything else likely to cripple or kill me, sir".

    Yesterday just before I climbed up in yet another narrow spot above a ceiling I asked a co-worker:

    "I have a low pain tolerance, I'm weak, and I'm also lazy. How the Hell did I wind up doing this?"
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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    The answer to why I'm afraid of death is because I never had any choice whether to be afraid or not. I just am. The OP makes it sound like you're asking why I would bother being scared, and the answer is that I haven't bothered to - it just comes naturally.

    As for the antecedent causes, the evolutionary aspect has been covered well enough by others.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Perhaps we should ask Conan's dad:

    "..the courage of a Cimmerian is tempered: he neither fears death... nor rushes foolishly to meet it...."

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    I am not convinced there is not a cognitive aspect to all fear of death. Does any animal fear death? Animals fear, surely, but they are reflexively fearing injury and the jaws of predators as a "bad place," but, if they feared death they would have to be able to conceptualise it, which means they should be able to communicate with humans about this fear. In other words if animals were intelligent enough to fear death they would beg for their lives when humans came to kill them.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    I am not convinced there is not a cognitive aspect to all fear of death. Does any animal fear death? Animals fear, surely, but they are reflexively fearing injury and the jaws of predators as a "bad place," but, if they feared death they would have to be able to conceptualise it, which means they should be able to communicate with humans about this fear. In other words if animals were intelligent enough to fear death they would beg for their lives when humans came to kill them.
    Are you in the killing business? Mammals are quite good at this and they actually will try to communicate, which you'd know when you have either to deal with killing them or have pets that suffer from a terminal disease.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    they would have to be able to conceptualise it, which means they should be able to communicate with humans about this fear.
    I'm not sure that follows. There are all kinds of things that animals must be able to conceptualise in order to have a decent chance to survive but can't communicate with humans about.

    (Some humans can conceptualise things that they can't communicate with other humans about, indeed.)

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    .....(Some humans can conceptualise things that they can't communicate with other humans about, indeed.)

    That's a lesson that from time-to-time this Forum teaches very well.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Florian View Post
    Are you in the killing business? Mammals are quite good at this and they actually will try to communicate, which you'd know when you have either to deal with killing them or have pets that suffer from a terminal disease.
    Communicate how?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    Communicate how?
    What does a frightened dog do? It rolls over and displays its stomach, which is basically complete and unconditional surrender. It's saying 'don't kill me' just as clearly as waving a white flag and coming out with your hands over your head does. So far as I'm aware, pretty much every social animal (insects possibly excepted) have body language or other means of signaling surrender/submission to each other.
    Blood-red were his spurs i' the golden noon; wine-red was his velvet coat,
    When they shot him down on the highway,
    Down like a dog on the highway,
    And he lay in his blood on the highway, with the bunch of lace at his throat.


    Alfred Noyes, The Highwayman, 1906.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    (Some humans can conceptualise things that they can't communicate with other humans about, indeed.)
    Itīs funny, but the easiest example might actually be something simple like taste. Something I learned during the sommelier seminar I attended some years back, is that you actually need to have tasted a taste in the first place, else you canīt identify it, and you can only ever really talk about tastes with someone who has actually tasted the same tastes and knows what you want to talk about. "Tastes like blackberries" doesn't transport any meaning across to someone who never tasted those. (This is where you get wine (or beer) descriptions like "Gras, green paprika, slight citrus, hint of oak")

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    Communicate how?
    Mammals, especially pack hunters and other social animals, are actually quite adept at communication. Cats are actually a good example - truly feral ones are mostly silent, while house cats try to mimic out speech in their limited way. Larger herd animals are more difficult to "read" than most predators, as their communication tends to happen with the herd and you've got to watch how the whole herd reacts, not the single animal, but itīs quite there - if you have the chance, contrast free-roaming cows or pigs to those in an industrial setting. Quite telling.
    Last edited by Florian; 2018-03-02 at 01:12 PM.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    I am not convinced there is not a cognitive aspect to all fear of death. Does any animal fear death? Animals fear, surely, but they are reflexively fearing injury and the jaws of predators as a "bad place," but, if they feared death they would have to be able to conceptualise it, which means they should be able to communicate with humans about this fear. In other words if animals were intelligent enough to fear death they would beg for their lives when humans came to kill them.
    Depends on the animal... and you are assuming that the animal is aware that the human is coming to actually kill them, rather than just harm or harass.

    But, that does make me wonder:
    There are some animals that appear to mourn the dead. There are also animals that we can communicate with in a rudimentary way. For example, sign language with chimps/apes, or basic verbal conversations with some exceptional African Grey parrots. I wonder if anyone has ever tried to communicate the concept of death to them?

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aliquid View Post
    There are some animals that appear to mourn the dead.
    Mostly pack/herd animals, with the caveat that drastic changes in environment can force solo predators/scavengers to adapt these tactics.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    What does a frightened dog do? It rolls over and displays its stomach, which is basically complete and unconditional surrender. It's saying 'don't kill me' just as clearly as waving a white flag and coming out with your hands over your head does. So far as I'm aware, pretty much every social animal (insects possibly excepted) have body language or other means of signaling surrender/submission to each other.
    That doesn't mean they're aware of death, only that they have instincts to submit when threatened with overpowering force.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    That doesn't mean they're aware of death, only that they have instincts to submit when threatened with overpowering force.
    Sure, but you can say the same thing about any human behavior in the face of overwhelming force as well. If begging not to be hurt or killed isn't proof that an animal is aware of dying, it isn't for humans either.

    What then is proof? Grief? Many social animals display grief, anybody who's seen a mother animal birth a dead baby will recognize this. Signs of emotional trauma when exposed to violence against members of the same species? This is well documented in many animals, notably pigs. Use of violence against rivals? This is again well documented, particularly among wolves, who kill each other all the time.
    Blood-red were his spurs i' the golden noon; wine-red was his velvet coat,
    When they shot him down on the highway,
    Down like a dog on the highway,
    And he lay in his blood on the highway, with the bunch of lace at his throat.


    Alfred Noyes, The Highwayman, 1906.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    I'm pretty sure that there have been attempts to discuss death with some of the smarter animals, such as parrots and primates. At least some have discussed back - IIRC Coco the gorilla, or some other gorilla in captivity, used sign language to ask what will happen after death.

    Do note that "animals" is an incredibly broad category. The way in which we tend to make a distinction between humans and all other animals is stupid and not really supported by cognitive sciences. Some of the smarter animals, like, say, elephants, not only have concept of death, they have concept of revenge and will communicate it rather destructively.

    Even within a species, variability is immense. Some of the smarter dogs (border collies) can read. Compare that to your average Chihuahua.
    "It's the fate of all things under the sky,
    to grow old and wither and die."

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    Sure, but you can say the same thing about any human behavior in the face of overwhelming force as well. If begging not to be hurt or killed isn't proof that an animal is aware of dying, it isn't for humans either.

    What then is proof? Grief? Many social animals display grief, anybody who's seen a mother animal birth a dead baby will recognize this. Signs of emotional trauma when exposed to violence against members of the same species? This is well documented in many animals, notably pigs. Use of violence against rivals? This is again well documented, particularly among wolves, who kill each other all the time.
    I know I am going to die, and I have no reason to think other humans are profoundly different from myself, so that's proof that humans in general are aware of their mortality. As Peter Preuss said, "Man, unlike the animal, is self-conscious. He is aware that he is alive and that he must die. And because he is self-conscious he is not only aware of living, but of living well or badly. Life is not wholly something that happens to man; it is also something he engages in according to values he follows. Human existence is a task."

    In other words, animals aware of death would have the same core quandary as man, they would evince the same task: they would develop humanlike culture, history, languages, technology, religion, and philosophy, they would wrestle with the problems we wrestle with, and they would know--for their history would have recorded this from time immemorial--that communicating with humans in a language humans will understand would be priority one, if they value their lives, territory, and even species. But, animals do none of these things. They at best adopt submission postures when defeated and they lament the inert bodies of those fellows they feel affinity to.

    This is also why I suspect only humans fear death as something more than just "the alpha wolf defeated me" or even "I am a hare and I am caught!", but very often develops into a sense of whether or not "I have lived a good life, by some transcendent standard". Animals have no transcendent standard, or if they do they hide it well and are perversely uninterested in coming to us to negotiate terms of truce between the animal kingdom and the kingdom of mankind.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    I have no reason to think other humans are profoundly different from myself
    I hate to be the one to break this to you, but other humans are profoundly different from you.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth
    In other words, animals aware of death would have the same core quandary as man, they would evince the same task: they would develop humanlike culture, history, languages, technology, religion, and philosophy, they would wrestle with the problems we wrestle with, and they would know--for their history would have recorded this from time immemorial--that communicating with humans in a language humans will understand would be priority one, if they value their lives, territory, and even species. But, animals do none of these things. They at best adopt submission postures when defeated and they lament the inert bodies of those fellows they feel affinity to.
    This paragraph makes a massive number of assumptions and lays quite a number of distinct things at the feet of simply being aware of one's mortality.

    And because of that, it must be wrong. Say, opposing thumbs or having particular sort of vocal chords amenable to speech, go much longer way towards building human-like culture and technology than awareness of mortality. By contrast, their lack prevents such develepoments even if awareness of mortality is present. Other primates make excellent examples: gorillas and chimpanzees both can understand human spoken language, and they can learn to communicate with humans via other means. But simply because their throats are of different shape, they can never learn to speak human language like a human would. This also goes for dogs and cats - dogs and cats understand humans, and do their damnest to communicate to and with humans, but because they can't do it in human ways, humans are arguably worse at understanding them than they are at understanding humans.

    Also, you are wrong to a quite high degree about lack of interspecies communication. Quite a lot of animals do communicate with other species, including with humans. What do you think the snake's hiss is for? Or the warning colors of bees and wasps? The roar of an angry bear? The bull lowering its head and scraping the ground? Are you such an urbanized specimen that you yourself have become illiterate to such obvious signs?
    "It's the fate of all things under the sky,
    to grow old and wither and die."

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post

    Even within a species, variability is immense. Some of the smarter dogs (border collies) can read. Compare that to your average Chihuahua.
    Wait really? That's pretty awesome. When/where was that proven?

    Also Donna, I think it's a mistake to say that if it doesn't happen to the same extent as it does for us it doesn't happen. Intelligence is on a spectrum between things that don't have brains and (as far as I know) humans, I don't see why consciousness of mortality (or just consciousness in general really) shouldn't be the same. A lot of animals, especially big social mammals like apes, orca (who are known to troll fishermen) or elephants, have culture, languages and technology, the fact that they don't write anything down or communicate in a way we understand or that it's not terribly impressive compared to ours doesn't change that...

    I mean, it's not like we humans bothered with pretty much everything you listed until roughly 3/4 of our current existence (and some of it way later), does that mean to you that fearing death started around the development of cuneiform?
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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    I know I am going to die, and I have no reason to think other humans are profoundly different from myself, so that's proof that humans in general are aware of their mortality. As Peter Preuss said, "Man, unlike the animal, is self-conscious. He is aware that he is alive and that he must die. And because he is self-conscious he is not only aware of living, but of living well or badly. Life is not wholly something that happens to man; it is also something he engages in according to values he follows. Human existence is a task."
    OK, I'll accept this as evidence that humans are aware they are going to die.

    In other words, animals aware of death would have the same core quandary as man, they would evince the same task: they would develop humanlike culture, history, languages, technology, religion, and philosophy, they would wrestle with the problems we wrestle with, and they would know--for their history would have recorded this from time immemorial--that communicating with humans in a language humans will understand would be priority one, if they value their lives, territory, and even species. But, animals do none of these things. They at best adopt submission postures when defeated and they lament the inert bodies of those fellows they feel affinity to.
    This doesn't follow. There is plenty of evidence of animal cultures, in chimps, whales, crows, and probably a tremendous number of examples my knowledge of modern behavioral ecology isn't robust enough to know about. Many animals use tools, and teach others how to use them as well; this is culture. Many animals have individualized markings, calls or other identifying features that are recognized to and responded to by others in their environment, with forms that change in time - consider whale song for example. Further, there's solid evidence that animals with complex social structures suffer very human like symptoms of PTSD as a result of exposure to high levels of violence; here's an example involving elephants. There's also abundant evidence of inter-species communication, be that threat displays, stotting, awareness - and manipulation of that awareness - of alarm calls, and so forth. In short I have no idea how you could take even a passing knowledge of the results of modern studies of animal intelligence and come to the conclusion you seem so secure in.

    This is also why I suspect only humans fear death as something more than just "the alpha wolf defeated me" or even "I am a hare and I am caught!", but very often develops into a sense of whether or not "I have lived a good life, by some transcendent standard". Animals have no transcendent standard, or if they do they hide it well and are perversely uninterested in coming to us to negotiate terms of truce between the animal kingdom and the kingdom of mankind.
    Or possibly we are simply terrible at listening. Notably a large number of traditional cultures do see animals as transcendental (to abuse a term a bit) beings in their own right. What makes this understanding wrong, pray? And what makes the ever-growing piles of scientific evidence for animal culture, mourning and communication irrelevant?

    Oh right. Your pathological need to see the human species as some sort of special cosmic snowflake.
    Blood-red were his spurs i' the golden noon; wine-red was his velvet coat,
    When they shot him down on the highway,
    Down like a dog on the highway,
    And he lay in his blood on the highway, with the bunch of lace at his throat.


    Alfred Noyes, The Highwayman, 1906.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    I hate to be the one to break this to you, but other humans are profoundly different from you.
    Thankfully.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    I know I am going to die, and I have no reason to think other humans are profoundly different from myself, so that's proof that humans in general are aware of their mortality. As Peter Preuss said, "Man, unlike the animal, is self-conscious. He is aware that he is alive and that he must die. And because he is self-conscious he is not only aware of living, but of living well or badly. Life is not wholly something that happens to man; it is also something he engages in according to values he follows. Human existence is a task."
    What a.... big heap of excrement.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by thorgrim29 View Post
    Wait really? That's pretty awesome. When/where was that proven?
    You can probably find videos of dogs doing this if you type "dogs that can read" in Google search. My actual source would require an archive binge in tiede.fi to find, and that's too much of a hassle to go through for a thread like this.

    Do note, though, that all dogs that can do this are very specifically trained or individual geniuses. They are to canines what Alex the grey parrot was to parrots: we have no reason to think all dogs, or even all dog breeds, are capable of this.
    "It's the fate of all things under the sky,
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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    There's been a lot of indications that
    elephants mourn their dead

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    This paragraph makes a massive number of assumptions and lays quite a number of distinct things at the feet of simply being aware of one's mortality.

    And because of that, it must be wrong. Say, opposing thumbs or having particular sort of vocal chords amenable to speech, go much longer way towards building human-like culture and technology than awareness of mortality. By contrast, their lack prevents such develepoments even if awareness of mortality is present. Other primates make excellent examples: gorillas and chimpanzees both can understand human spoken language, and they can learn to communicate with humans via other means. But simply because their throats are of different shape, they can never learn to speak human language like a human would. This also goes for dogs and cats - dogs and cats understand humans, and do their damnest to communicate to and with humans, but because they can't do it in human ways, humans are arguably worse at understanding them than they are at understanding humans.

    Also, you are wrong to a quite high degree about lack of interspecies communication. Quite a lot of animals do communicate with other species, including with humans. What do you think the snake's hiss is for? Or the warning colors of bees and wasps? The roar of an angry bear? The bull lowering its head and scraping the ground? Are you such an urbanized specimen that you yourself have become illiterate to such obvious signs?
    These details are all functions of a single capacity for reason, without which we would not understand death. That we are so cognizant, or capable of being so informed, brings with it the functions you detail.

    I am aware that animals communicate; I have even pointed that fact out to others who disbelieved me; but they (animals) cannot communicate the plans to the Golden Gate bridge, other than by carrier pigeon. If they were really aware of death they would have the reasoning faculty and would do their damnedest to reach us, whether that's through sign language or inkblots or Morse code or synchronised bird-flocks forming letters in the sky or ants making geometric patterns on the ground. Given humans' relationship to animals, animals have every reason to try exhaustively to communicate with us.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by thorgrim29 View Post
    Wait really? That's pretty awesome. When/where was that proven?

    Also Donna, I think it's a mistake to say that if it doesn't happen to the same extent as it does for us it doesn't happen. Intelligence is on a spectrum between things that don't have brains and (as far as I know) humans, I don't see why consciousness of mortality (or just consciousness in general really) shouldn't be the same. A lot of animals, especially big social mammals like apes, orca (who are known to troll fishermen) or elephants, have culture, languages and technology, the fact that they don't write anything down or communicate in a way we understand or that it's not terribly impressive compared to ours doesn't change that...

    I mean, it's not like we humans bothered with pretty much everything you listed until roughly 3/4 of our current existence (and some of it way later), does that mean to you that fearing death started around the development of cuneiform?
    I believe in the "more is different" theory of intelligence. Also, where are the animal _________?

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    OK, I'll accept this as evidence that humans are aware they are going to die.


    This doesn't follow. There is plenty of evidence of animal cultures, in chimps, whales, crows, and probably a tremendous number of examples my knowledge of modern behavioral ecology isn't robust enough to know about. Many animals use tools, and teach others how to use them as well; this is culture. Many animals have individualized markings, calls or other identifying features that are recognized to and responded to by others in their environment, with forms that change in time - consider whale song for example. Further, there's solid evidence that animals with complex social structures suffer very human like symptoms of PTSD as a result of exposure to high levels of violence; here's an example involving elephants. There's also abundant evidence of inter-species communication, be that threat displays, stotting, awareness - and manipulation of that awareness - of alarm calls, and so forth. In short I have no idea how you could take even a passing knowledge of the results of modern studies of animal intelligence and come to the conclusion you seem so secure in.

    Or possibly we are simply terrible at listening. Notably a large number of traditional cultures do see animals as transcendental (to abuse a term a bit) beings in their own right. What makes this understanding wrong, pray? And what makes the ever-growing piles of scientific evidence for animal culture, mourning and communication irrelevant?

    Oh right. Your pathological need to see the human species as some sort of special cosmic snowflake.
    I said humanlike cultures, not culture in general. Bees dance and chimps fish and birds dream of new songs. The way you're arguing it seems you wish to declare the world's fauna (and the telegraph vine, too) as human beings with rights and suffrage.

    Only man can build a rocketship and travel to Luna. Only man can cure smallpox. Only man can write Eine kleine Nachtmusik. And, only man can rebuild the face of Terra to increase his population density by a factor of 700 with no known lawful limit. This is not the work of the beasts, this is the work of the crowning organism in Nature, built to conquer the Universe. If we deviate from this understanding and view ourselves as mere animals, we will watch as dumbly as they do as our infrastructure crumbles (which it is) and our economy collapses (which it will) and ____________________, ending with it all our pretensions of morality. We melt the snowflake at our peril.

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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    I said humanlike cultures, not culture in general. Bees dance and chimps fish and birds dream of new songs. The way you're arguing it seems you wish to declare the world's fauna (and the telegraph vine, too) as human beings with rights and suffrage.
    I don't see any sign of such a wish. Is it possible you are reading your own preconceptions into the post?

    Specifically, I think you are making the unfounded assumption that any creature that achieves a human-like level of, let's call it "awareness", must axiomatically be human-like. That there are no other possible paths that its intelligence and culture could follow: anything that thinks, must think like us. I don't think that's defensible, particularly given the wide range of deeply contradictory philosophies that our one species has come up with.

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    Only man can build a rocketship and travel to Luna. Only man can cure smallpox. Only man can write Eine kleine Nachtmusik.
    But something over 99.99999% of humans have done none of those things. Should you really judge a species by the performance of a miniscule number of freaks? Perhaps more fundamentally, what does "judging" them mean anyway? If we grant, even absent any coherent reason, that humankind is "the crowning organism in nature", what follows from that exactly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    And, only man can rebuild the face of Terra to increase his population density by a factor of 700 with no known lawful limit.
    If that is the true measure of species-wide achievement, then the "crowning organism" has to be some kind of fungus. Those things grow everywhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    This is not the work of the beasts, this is the work of the crowning organism in Nature, built to conquer the Universe.
    "Built to conquer the Universe"? I don't think any of those words mean what you think they mean.
    "None of us likes to be hated, none of us likes to be shunned. A natural result of these conditions is, that we consciously or unconsciously pay more attention to tuning our opinions to our neighbor’s pitch and preserving his approval than we do to examining the opinions searchingly and seeing to it that they are right and sound." - Mark Twain

  29. - Top - End - #119
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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth View Post
    These details are all functions of a single capacity for reason, without which we would not understand death. That we are so cognizant, or capable of being so informed, brings with it the functions you detail.
    The ability to understand death may be a function of the ability to reason.

    Ability to create technology and culture and to communicate like humans would is not. Those also require particular arrangement of limbs and digits, particular vocal chords, particular sensory organs etc.

    The achievements of humanity are not constructs of pure reason, they are pragmatic adaptions of particular limits and traits of humanity. To argue that all other animals should or even could take the same path can trivially be deemed nonsense.

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth
    I am aware that animals communicate; I have even pointed that fact out to others who disbelieved me; but they (animals) cannot communicate the plans to the Golden Gate bridge, other than by carrier pigeon.
    Irrelevant argument. The dumbest humans who can be demonstrated to fear death cannot communicate plans of Golden Gate bridge either. Once again, you are merely assuming that awareness of mortality requires or entails a level of ability that it has not been shown to require nor entail.

    Quote Originally Posted by Donnadogsoth
    If they were really aware of death they would have the reasoning faculty and would do their damnedest to reach us, whether that's through sign language or inkblots or Morse code or synchronised bird-flocks forming letters in the sky or ants making geometric patterns on the ground. Given humans' relationship to animals, animals have every reason to try exhaustively to communicate with us.
    Again: animals who do have relationship with humans do communicate with them and are arguably better at understanding humans than humans are at understanding them.

    Where your argument fails, is again the assumption of arbitrarily high ability. The dumbest of humans provenly have trouble getting through to other humans, despite fearing death. Heck, a human does not need to be particularly stupid, growing up in different linguistic area may create a sufficient barrier to prevent communication of complex ideas. So the idea that awareness of mortality requires or entails the ability for, say, birds to read and form letters in the sky, is nothing short of utter nonsense. (Nevermind all species of birds which can communicate information via pattern flying, or those species of birds with known ability to mimic and understand human speech to some degree.)
    "It's the fate of all things under the sky,
    to grow old and wither and die."

  30. - Top - End - #120
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    Default Re: Why are people afraid of death?

    Quote Originally Posted by Joran View Post
    As an agnostic leaning atheist, I don't believe in an afterlife, but am still scared of death.

    I like existence, existence has been good to me. I don't want it to end.
    As another agnostic leaning atheist, I'm not certain there is no afterlife, nor am I scared of death.

    I would welcome it, in fact, as I hate this existence and wish it would end. I am not, however, suicidal. I just wouldn't mind if I stopped hurting.
    Last edited by Lex-Kat; 2018-03-03 at 09:26 AM.

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