17 Feb

Divine and Demonic Natures

This post offers some practical advice on how to deal with different kinds of people in this world based on some simple ideas drawn from Vedic philosophy—namely, divine and demonic natures—which are separated into the upper and lower parts of the universe. In the present world, which lies in between the upper and lower parts, these natures are mixed. That means some people have divine nature, others have demonic nature, and yet others have a mixture of these natures. By learning to spot them through a philosophical understanding, we can understand how to relate to different people.

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16 Feb

The Contradictions of Being

In the previous post, I talked about how choice and responsibility are essential features of human life, and thereby of the soul. In this post, I will discuss how both choice and responsibility often present a paradox when the three aspects of the soul—pleasure, ability, and responsibility—are differentiated and what we enjoy becomes different from what we are capable of, and what we are capable of becomes different from our duty. The post discusses the resulting conflicts and how they are solved.

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12 Jan

Human Choice and Responsibility

Anthropology is the study of what it means to be human. Some of the factors that have been offered as distinguishing characteristics of humans include language, religion, and social laws. Evolutionists, such as Charles Darwin, believed that humans are similar to animals, although incrementally more intelligent due to their state of evolution. But claiming such incrementalism is not enough to prove it, and finding the genes responsible for language, art, music, politics, literature, economics, religion, taxation, and mathematics—just some of the things uniquely found among humans—will prove to be daunting. However, I will not make the question that complicated, because there are indeed humans who do not exhibit some or all of the above. Their language may be primitive, or they may not be even able to speak. They may not practice any religion or pay any taxes. Does that make them not human? There is also a sense among us that humans should be described not by what they are but what they should be. By that criterion we call some human actions “inhuman”.

In this post I will offer a simple definition of humanity, namely that a human is one who understands two ideas—choice and responsibility. Humans indeed have a greater symbolic ability relative to animals, but even if a machine existed that could process symbols like humans—as the contenders of strong AI believe—it would still not be human because the machine has no choice or responsibility. Read More