Bernard White


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Human history is a history of conflict and misunderstanding. Will it ever stop?

I think this quote shall suffice :
"We're both of the same breed, after all… motives for war are of no concern. Religion, ideology, resources, land, grudges, love, or just because… No matter how pathetic the reason, it's enough to start a war. War will never cease to exist… Reasons can be thought up after the fact. Human nature pursues strife."
The History of man is one of conflict, as seen by books like "The better Angles of our nature" (by Stephen Pinker).
Shall human conflict ever end? Or shall we always enter endless cycles of retribution and hatred? And History shall repeat itself.

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    Jun 3 2013: G'day Bernard

    This is a hard question to answer, will it ever stop? Not if we continue along the same lines, consciousness of man would have to change dramatically to stop conflicting as it's very much like the spoilt brat syndrome, if you keep feeding it it will continue but if you stop feeding it what it wants it will slowly stop & come out of this syndrome. We have consumerist materialism feeding us & as long as it does conflicts will be for ever more.

    If we go back a bit to what created conflicts? Greed, power & power playing, jealousy & so on, yes we have all these today but we have added to it with consumerist materialism. One fix is to learn to do with what one needs to survive not what one wants or is told they need to survive, calm the ego. Bringing back philosophy in schools would assist in this as well which would assist us to start thinking for ourselves again.

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      Jun 3 2013: I'm always up for your solution! "Bringing back philosophy in schools"
      However the main problem is I can remember reading somewhere (this may be false) that "ethics class" doesn't install "morality or honesty" (or whatever you want to call it) long term.
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      Jun 4 2013: "Is this real(?)"
      If it isn't real, it's a very persistent illusion. I really don't mind whether it is real, the origins of reality don't matter to me as long as it remains consistent.
      "or a heaven on earth than can be?"
      No. It is not "heaven on earth that can be". There is still much cruelty, the history of man kind is one of cruelty. As Thomas Hobbes said : "Look, life is nasty, brutish, and short, but you knew that when you became a caveman". This statement still remains relevant today, for many people that is, and may even always be relevant.
      "I just want to lie back and enjoy. It is a good feeling."
      Yes it is. Living in the present being grateful for what you have gained (whether or not you deserved it) does feel good. Ignoring the perils of the future, or at least badly predicting the future, remaining optimistic does prevail in man.
      However not all have this privilege to worry about meaningless things, such as "relationships or money". Some people have to worry about the lives of themselves and others.
      "How long can this last?"
      It can last for a very long time, as long as certain things remain constant. It won't be infinite due to the laws of Entropy. A great TED talk I recommend to you is :
      "Steven Pinker: The surprising decline in violence"
      To quote Philip Zimbardo : "Human behaviour is incredibly pliable, plastic."
      If we can shape people for more pro-social behaviours and altruism, then this could "potentially" last for a very long time indeed. Whether or not that change comes from within, or must be made externally.
      This would probably be something along the lines of my message to the future, if I was blessed enough to have a few people read it.
      "Are you Christ?"
      This made me smile. No Don, I am not Christ. However I do try my best to follow his (best) teachings like to follow the golden rule. Yet I can not believe that he is the "son of God".
      Kind regards (as always),
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    May 30 2013: I had three uncles who fought in wwII. One died on Okinawa and two were in the Normandy Invasion. My patriotic family glorified their sacrifices. I grew up wanting to be like them. I read WWII books on first hand accounts. I studied war, weapons and wanted to be a fighter pilot when I grew up. I played war games with the other kids in my neighborhood. We watched the WWII TV movies shows and cowboy shows that contained much violence (not as bad as it is today).

    In short, I grew up thinking that war was a glories endeavor and America was the only country that could set the world right. I was lucky enough to have some teachers in school who tried to direct my talents along a more academic path in life. But, I lacked the home support that would have pushed me in that direction. My parents were not very educated but they were very patriotic.

    I ended up in Vietnam, anyway, at age 18, thinking I was going to have glories adventures and make the world right and free of communism. What I learned in Vietnam was that, “War is not good for children and all living things” ~!author unknown.

    As long as violence is seen, in some resolve as a possible solution to our social problems, there will continue to be violent episodes in this world. It will take a cataclysmic, event to change our minds towards another direction. If the world ever unites and works together towards one political end, that might enable us to create a one world, social philosophy, that may enable us to eradicate our violent tendencies. If that were to happen, we might one day be on the path that will turn us into a Class I civilization.

    From the movie “The Day the World Stood Still” with Keanu Reeves playing the part of Kllatu, a question was asked of him about other civilization in our galaxy becoming as technological advanced as his. He answered: “...most don't make it...”.
    I think we are moving in the direction that will take us to that precipice where we decide to change.
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    May 29 2013: Misunderstanding, or not understanding, other people's thoughts and motivations is inevitable, as the large subconscious component to our behavior means we don't even understand our own feelings and motivations well! This is true even before we start injecting the messy layer of trying to communicate, when language cannot capture precisely what we mean.

    We might misunderstand each other less if we were serious about trying to understand rather than assuming we already do. For example, many people are quite happy to go with a working assumption about strangers but may try to understand more certainly when they have to work with someone on a small team.

    As I look at Adesh's reply to you, he takes up one definition of conflict which may not be the one you had in mind. People's different perceptions and tastes would naturally lead to different preferred choices. One person wants to add avocado and the other doesn't. One prefers to use the site for a playground and the other for a public meeting hall, each not necessarily out of private interest but perhaps because of what he/she thinks is best for the community at large.

    These are conflicting preferences or may be subject to melding. It is how conflicts of preference or ideas are resolved in decisions and how these differences affect the relationships of the actors that determine whether the culture of the place embraces diversity in a positive way.
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      May 29 2013: You raise the good points that "Misunderstanding, or not understanding, other people's thoughts and motivations is inevitable". I didn't consider this! :P
      Regarding taste, and beauty I do sometimes feel it isn't subjective as you would think. Considering that certain things we can all agree taste bad (e.g mud and faeces), and some things taste good (e.g Fast food).
      However I do admit there probably (regarding taste) isn't one "best way" (for everybody), there are many best ways. Each person may have a different "best way". (This TED talk explains it very well : "Malcolm Gladwell: Choice, happiness and spaghetti sauce" ( )
      Got a bit side-tracked there didn't I?
      Anyhow I do believe these differences can be resolved... (Not sure how though! Call it "faith".)
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        May 29 2013: Is the question whether taste is subjective or whether it varies between people?
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    May 29 2013: Without conflict and misunderstanding human race will cease to grow.

    Disagreements gives birth to new ideas.
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      May 29 2013: I agree.
      Have you watched "Margaret Heffernan: Dare to disagree" (
      (One of my favourite TED Talks! :D)
      Very important in my opinion.
      However there is the need for one (or more) parties to have the humility (and courage) to admit their wrong. And for disagreement to even take place, there is a need for tolerance (of a difference of opinion) and patience.
      Of-course I may be mistaken in this view! :P
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      May 30 2013: This is true.

      However, how we handle our difference of opinion or misunderstanding should be subject to an easily learned and practiced social protocol.

      Many comments I've read on this debate soon get lost in the details of how we are different.

      I think we should focus on developing an international protocol of behavior that all world citizens are required to be taught and trained in applying to all world interactions. I guess the United Nations could take the lead and develop a school where ambassadors are educated, trained and certified with the tools to actually work towards world peace. A degree in Ambassadorship, should be a prerequisite for any ambassador who works at the United Nations.

      On a national level, perhaps a similar school for those who would be legislators or presidents might be helpful to pursue world peace.

      Obviously, the more common people of the earth don't have the skill and resources to enact the building of such a global social protocol. That means it should fall on the shoulders of Academia, to pursue this course.

      There is a lot of world building that begs for the assistance of the Doctoral people on this planet. After all, it is within these ranks we find the social protocols that should be taught as part of a Social Protocol Development (SPD), endeavor People might not be capable of learning what General Relativity is about but they can be taught how to act in one anthers company. Practice makes perfect.

      .Time for someone(s) to start earning they wages and applying their degrees. After all, "no one" is going to listen to me.... :) because I don't have a PhD. I think this rhymes.

      Someone or some country needs to say we are moving towards a one world, Class I Civilization. Follow us or get left behind. With all these natural disasters that are happening lately, Perhaps when we rebuild a city we can start there?
  • May 29 2013: As long as humans are greedy there will always be conflicts of some sort.
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      May 29 2013: Disagree.
      Considering peace "could" be within humans rational self-interest (thus greed).
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          May 29 2013: Thus greed increases your well-being. If we have enough resources, greed is beneficial. Considering we have enough resources for an " inordinate desire to possess wealth, goods, or objects of abstract value with the intention to keep it for one's self, far beyond the dictates of basic survival and comfort".
          However if not, then greed is not beneficial (in the long term).
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          May 29 2013: Ah.
          My apologies.
          Under your definition you are correct.
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          May 29 2013: My logic was that :
          - Greed = Over consumption (more consumption than needed for survival).
          - If there is enough food for over consumption.
          - Then Greed would increase well-being and not be harmful.
          However you added the bit "taking more than you need to the detriment of others" which means (mostly be definition) greed would be harmful. Thus not being beneficial (for the majority).
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          May 29 2013: So would Gluttony be good?
          (Reminds me of the "Divine Comedy" by Dante. A great piece of literature!)
          P.S: Did you get my other reply?
  • May 29 2013: In my opinion, conflict will probably never end.

    Violent conflict probably will end, far in the future. The rule of law is very slowly becoming more popular. Also, the study of human behavior is reaching the point where serious progress will be possible.

    War is coming to an end. Due to globalization, war will always be against a trading partner. At the national scale, net profits will be hurt by war.
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      May 29 2013: Interesting take on this.
      So are you arguing that there will always be conflict due to finance? (Or money?)
      • May 29 2013: I am just offering an opinion that people will always find a reason for conflict.

        Parents have conflicts with their children, sometimes over matters that are completely trivial, like hair style.

        I have met a number of people who are never happy unless they have something to complain about, and they usually complain about other people.

        In my experience, conflict is part of the human condition. We are each individuals and develop individual ideas about everything. With millions and billions of ideas being generated by all sorts of different people, conflicting ideas seem inevitable.
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    Jun 26 2013: We aren't putting as much funding into education as we should. College tuition is just too high for far too many people. Societal issues are a reflection of financial issues and our economy is tanking. Careers with a livable wage earning power are fewer and far between unless you have that education. A staggering number of people are dependant on the government for one or more of the forms of welfare offerred and we can't sustain the system for a prolonged period of time.

    What if...upon graduating high school you were required to either be enrolled in college or...enlist in some form of our military?

    Enlisting provides access to higher education that would otherwise be unavailable.

    The lowest classes of society continue to be dependant on the gov. but will also be required to serve the gov. in their time of need.

    Could we be looking at a military for hire in the future where conflicts are created purposefully to ensure a steady flow of profits?

    I already see and hear the advertisements pushing young people to enlist so that they wont be in debt.

    Enroll or Enlist Act??? Is it coming to that? Then the conflicts will never end and the ridiculousness of the conflicts we could end up fighting over...well use your imagination.
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    Jun 24 2013: Conflict and misunderstanding will never cease, and they add spice to life. Unless we become a race of sheep we will have different viewpoints and interests, some of which will conflict with others' interests.

    In an effort to reach "true communism," the USSR tried to breed out self-interest and breed in altruism in their citizens, depending on education and Lysenko's mistaken genetic ideas to create the perfect soviet man. It didn't work in the few generations they had available, and as a breeding program it wouldn't have worked in a thousand years. But a competent breeding program, as used in animal husbandry, could probably create perfectly docile humans, like the Eloi in H.G.Wells' "The Time Machine," within a few hundred years. But absent this we're stuck with our genetic heritage, including the bothersome self-preservation instinct that gets our backs up when someone is seen to invade our turf.

    But while conflict can't be avoided, it can be managed and war avoided. A good model for peaceful coexistence is the federation of the 50 individual, quasi-sovereign, states that make up the USA, and that have lived as neighbors for 150 years without going to war against one another, even though there have been plenty of serious conflicts. Why has Illinois, for example, not attacked Indiana or coveted its territory? First, the states are committed to a higher jurisdiction that includes superior law, judicial authority, and military power. Second, the states have no fear of their neighbors, partly because the individual states are practically demilitarized. Another example is the European Union, which has kept the peace among EU states for a record-long time.

    I think the lesson is that agreement on higher law is necessary for international peace. World government is not needed, but both judicial and enforcement authorities (not necessarily military) for international disputes have to be in place. These need to be respected by all nations, to avoid wars.
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    Jun 18 2013: I'm not going to predict the future, but I don't think it will stop as long as free will and humanity prevails. Misunderstanding for sure will most likely never stop. Everyone has too much background and history that goes into what they say and how we say things that the receiver will never be able to grasp the correct meaning or intention of the words said. Conflict also seems inevitable because of these misunderstandings. I'd like to believe that at some point everyone will be accepting of all and misunderstandings will just be cause for laughter, but it seems that isn't likely.
  • Jun 14 2013: Who are those guys who are not in peace ? :)
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    Jun 4 2013: G'day Bernard

    This is actually looking at the numbers of kills & if we take in per population ratio we seem less violent however when you also take into consideration how long it took for the same the kill rate over a certain period we are far more violent today. You can't just take in the per population ratio however if in the past they killed at the same rate as we do today that would be different but it's not.

    However in saying all this if they had the weapons back then than we do today would they have been more violent in accordance with the kill rate over a certain period? Probably which is only a probability.

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    Jun 4 2013: G'day Bernard

    Here are some facts & figures in regards to violence.

    In world WWII 40-72 million people were killed over just a 5yr + period, the next worst carnage happened during the Mongol conquests 30-70 million & of course if you take in per populous percentage we seem today to be far less violent however when you take into consideration the time period it took to kill this number of people we far out way any other period in human history in regards to being violent. War or conflicts are always a good indication in how violent a people are in that time period.

    Let’s take a look at WWII again, the Russians raped over 100,000 German women alone, over ten thousand of these women were raped to death or died from being raped, nowhere in human history can I find a figure that matches this & I’m only talking about German women over a 5yr+ period.

    Here is a link showing a list of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll:

    Going by this info a massive amount of people were killed between 1911-1945 around 62.5 million to 156.5 million people & the nearest estimation to this is between 1202-1368 but the death toll is puny in relation to the 1900’s also we are only talking about 34yrs in the 1900’s compared to 166yrs in the 1200 to 1300’s, if you add the figures up we are far more violent today.

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      Jun 4 2013: This is comparing population ratio's right?
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        Jun 4 2013: G’day Bernard

        In WWII 1.7 to 3.1 % of the world population was killed off compared to the Mongol conquests which was estimated to be 17.1% of the world population however when we take this 17.1% over 162yrs compared to 5+ yrs we were far more violent over a shorter period of time, could you imagine if WWII went for 162yrs? 54.4% to a total wipe out would have occurred & this is working it out by numbers not by threat of violence.

        Yes thankfully we have the threat of a total wipe out or mass annihilation by certain nations towards other nations however if we didn’t have this one sided threat & that every nation had equal military power my guess we would be at it big time even more than ever. In the olden days the military prowess between two armies or nations was minimal however since the discovery of gun powder this military prowess has changed somewhat but in saying this nuclear weapons are bridging this gap again to a certain extent which makes things a little more volatile.

        It doesn’t seem to matter how I do the figures it comes up that we are just as much if not more violent than ever.

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    Jun 3 2013: G'day Bernard

    I would like to ask how long have the basis of religious ethical & morale concepts been around? Since the dawn of man have we been knowing of these concepts so no I wouldn't agree it's not long term. I'm not religious myself however religion with all it's flaws through man has shown me that ethics & morality still exist till this day, if it didn't the world would be some what different to what it is now.

    If we long term taught philosophy in schools like we have religion yes I believe it would be long term but we haven't in human history to any extent not on a mass scale as only the wealthier children were brought up with such concepts of understanding & that was only to a certain extent, could you imagine on a mass scale for a long period of time what it would produce!!

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      Jun 3 2013: Watch :
      "Frans de Waal: Moral behavior in animals"
      Seems to me like morality preceded religion. Yet I do feel that religion was probably used to enforce (some form) morality (or pro-social behaviours) towards the in-group.
      Also there have been some interesting study on the differences between "liberal" and "conservatives".
      "Jonathan Haidt: The moral roots of liberals and conservatives"
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        Jun 4 2013: G'day Bernard

        I can't watch the vid's because I'm on limited down loads.

        I think even when they where worshipping sun Gods & alike have we had moral tendencies however they did make sacrifices like virgins & babies which by todays standards wouldn't seem too ethical however any type of organised clan or ideological beliefs system has some sort of moral standings imbedded.

        If we looked at organised religion it hasn't been that moral either over time however within the clan or congregation itself it does have moral standards, I suppose it's depends on our standards at the time if we are moral or not. Are we all that moral today with all the wars & bloodshed we have inflicted on each other over the last 100 yrs or so, in a thousand years time people of that time will probably look at us as being barbarous which at times certainly seems that way.

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        Jun 4 2013: G'day Bernard

        Has the decline of violence got something to do with how many people we kill or the threat of mass annihilation which wasn't possible in the past like it is now? I suppose it's the threat of mass annihilation that keeps us from slaughtering each other like we have in the past. I think it depends in how we measure violence by numbers or by threat!!

        Now if we looked at this in a different way, any threat of violence is still violence & never in the history of man has there ever been a bigger threat than now, look at the violent threatening weapons for starters, biological, gas, nuclear, germ warfare & so on which all represent violence on a mass scale never seen before. Massive amounts of money over the last 100 yrs spent on weapons is astonishing & again has never occurred in human history before on such a mass scale & by doing this something has got to suffer the consequences of such spending like with hospitals & health care & roads which cost peoples lives day in day out.

        So are we less violent? I don't think so because it depends on how you measure violence.

        This is so much like inflation in how they measure it now, if the workers wages go up inflation is said to have gone up however if insurances, bank fees, food, health care, fuel & so on go up that's not included within the inflation figures these days but they once were . A threat of being massively annihilated at any time represents violence but that's probably just me in how I see things.

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          Jun 4 2013: "Has the decline of violence got something to do with how many people we kill or the threat of mass annihilation which wasn't possible in the past like it is now?"
          Yes it has everything to do with the "now". The book (and the TED Talk) both talk about how our history was extremely violent, and how that violence has been reduced over time (and why).
          The nuclear war threat, Stephen Pinker, calls the "Leviathan" where he argues (like Thomas Hobbes did) that only an extreme deterrent could put a stop to war. Which in a sense, nuclear warfare does. (M.A.D = "Mutually Assured Destruction")
          So in this sense Nuclear weaponry is a benefit.
          However Sam Harris argues in the "The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason" that due to religious fanatics the deterrent of nuclear weaponry may not be good enough any-more, considering they could go for martyrdom . I personally do not believe this argument for one second, yet it may be worth considering.
          With regards to your last paragraph, people value human life more than they did. However it is worth noting that when the quality of life goes up, violence decreases. Mainly for evolutionary reasons (resources).
          Kind regards,
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        Jun 4 2013: G'day Bernard

        Having a threat of extreme violence has deterred us from killing each other because if we measure violence by numbers this is a huge threat to any nation.

        If we take in consideration of north Korea ,Iran or even Pakistan for instance the threat of massive violence is quite possible if we are measuring by numbers in how many people will be killed & of course this could escalate. Take a look at the Cuban missile crises in the sixties, we came extremely close to an all out nuclear war which would have been world wide, would these people saying we are less violent todays say that after a nuclear holocaust?

        What would happen if we had another world war today, nations just like the US did in WWII would just let fly, self preservation over common sense is a very strong human trait especially if we looked at multinationals in how they preserve their own wealth at a huge cost to society & the environment which to me isn't just violent but vile.

        I'm measuring violence not by numbers but by the threat of violence, "if you don't do what we say we are going to take action", this sounds awfully violent. Take a look at the US or NATO in how it threatens nations. The rest of the world is getting tired of living under this continues threat & dictatorship, it's going to end in a really violent way especially when measuring violence by numbers. The next world war will tell us how non-violent we are suppose to be these days in the kill ratio & threats of violence, it won't matter how you measure it it will be worse than any other time in human history. Of course you have people saying this will never happen but are they 110% sure, they can't be, a threat is showing an intent of violence, to threaten one with violence is violent.

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          Jun 4 2013: I see.
          If your measuring violence by the "threat of violence", then we are living in the most violent times in history. Considering we have the capabilities to extinguish mankind.
          Look up the Tsar Bomb :
          However I do not view this would be used, if there was a third world war. I predict it would by mostly a cyber war (a war involving advanced computers). If there was much physical fighting, it would be done by either drones, long-range missiles or specialized groups (e.g Black-ops) :P.
          While it is worth mentioning that World War 3 would involve mostly espionage.
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    May 31 2013: Until robotic AIs monitor life on earth, Humanity will go unchecked by even itself. Ironically our nonhuman creations will be what brings us together to become more humane, by the pointing of one's flaws out when they happen making it a present thought instead of a afterthought.
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    May 31 2013: Human's are animals. We have instincts, breed and form populations.
    We're advanced enough to do incredible things inside of our civilizations, yet we can not cease our populations from wanting to mass murder each other in the name of one thing or another. Most long-lived nations and leaders claim to have the intentions of peace and prosperity, yet end up spilling blood of the innocent. Only fools stray from the path yet still expect to arrive at the same destination. A great leader is one who does no harm to those who have done no harm. Whether they be his neighbor or live on the other side of earth.
  • May 30 2013: Everyone has been posting about the inevitability (or lack thereof) of conflict as part of human existance. I don't think that's the right question. I think that a more important question is the importance of conflict to future history. The fact that (generally) history is defined in terms of wars and other conflicts doesn't neccessarily mean that conflict is the only (or best) way to look at history or human existance.

    Instead of focusing on one aspect of human existance (conflict), wouldn't it be more useful to look at the broad range of things that make up human existance and see how they change over time. Yes, there are times when it seems like conflict is the primary factor for a given people at a given time (Europe during the Hundred Years War), but what about the times and places when conflict is far less important. I suspect that those times don't appear in the texts because they're boring.

    When looking at history, use multiple dimensions, not just the single conflict one. An example of a different approach would be Gregory Clark's A Farewell to Alms. (There's a free set of lectures available on iTunes University.) While there are issues with his analysis, it does look at history along a completely different axis. Looking at the future through multiple dimensions would bring a more complex view into play.

    I think that conflict will always be with us. But the importance of that conflict to the human condition will change for different periods and locations. With luck, we will never return to the Hundred Years War levels of conflict affecting every day humanity.
  • May 29 2013: No it will not, although we as humans seem to slowly come out of the basement.

    We are here for only one single reason and that is to learn to love God and love the neighbour. The more we are able to learn and apply that to our life, the more differences and priorities become just differences of opinion.

    How anxious are we, when in a gym, to run faster and lift more than everybody else? We are there to improve our body and make it grow stronger/healthier by using friction and weight. The end-result is a better body.
    On a spiritual level we should be doing the same, with the same outcome. Through handling friction and weighty subjects in a loving manner we build a better and healthier character. It is our character which determines our eternity.

    There will always be strive and evil, otherwise we would never have the choice to hate evil and love good.
    • May 30 2013: Of course there's the problem of which God (if any) and what's Good and Evil.
      • May 30 2013: That is the advantage of the literal text of the Bible. You can focus on anything you choose to believe or ignore. We all have our 'reasons.'

        At this stage of our evolution it is not the literal text that makes it God's word. It is the internal, spiritual meaning that does so. No more mysteries or inconsistencies.
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      May 29 2013: However due to their only being a finite amount of resources on our planet. This mean that "conflict and misunderstanding" will never stop. Considering even now we don't have enough resources to feed the entire planet (or maybe we do?).
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          May 29 2013: Or maybe there is a war for a need for justice?
          ". Religion, ideology, resources, land, grudges, love"
          In this discussion we are only including "resources and land".
      • May 29 2013: Just to answer you question about food:

        For decades, the agriculture industry has had the capability to provide adequate food for everyone on the planet. The primary reason for starvation is politics.
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          May 29 2013: And why does "politics" create "starvation"?
          Seems like "politics" isn't doing a very good job then.
      • May 29 2013: Bernard White: And why does "politics" create "starvation"?
        Seems like "politics" isn't doing a very good job then.

        This first link directly addresses the question, and provides a good explanation.

        This second link is rather long, and does not address the question directly, but provides an example of how policies of the World Bank (WB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) can cause hunger rather than relieve it. These agencies have intentionally made food an international commodity subject to global market fluctuations, similar to commodities like copper or rubber. Consequently the price of food can be very volatile, everywhere. When prices go up, people starve. Sometimes these policies benefit the poor ; these policies always benefit agribusiness. I am not speculating about their motives, just stating facts.

        This link
        provides the following quote:

        "Honestly, apart from some, they are not malnourished because there is no food, but because they don’t have enough money to buy the food. According to media reports, farmers in richer nations, under the government subsidies, produce enough food to feed the hungry, but paradoxically, not at the price the hungry people of the poor nations can afford. So this is the dilemma."

        Note "under the government subsidies."

        Just stop and think about it. If the rich western nations had the political will to feed the world, we could certainly provide enough food to feed everyone. There are many organizations devoted to feeding the hungry. So what is keeping the food from the people who need it?
      • May 30 2013: There has been some interesting discussions in science fiction literature about society post scarcity. There's also a Wikipedia article on it at

        If this society ever comes, it may reduce many grounds for conflict. Unfortunately, it appears that people find other motivations for conflict, such as religion and ideology.
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    May 29 2013: .
    .My answer:
    It will stop, certainly.
    As soon as people know what Invalid (harmful) happiness is.

    (from Be happy Validly)
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      May 29 2013: What is " Invalid (harmful) happiness"?
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        May 29 2013: NO! NO! NO!
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        May 29 2013: RE: "NO NO NO" Sorry sir, it was a kneejerk reaction which I now regret and wish to withdraw. Please continue to pursue an explanation of "Invalid Happiness." I am surprised you have not gotten it already. Don't worry needlessly, be happy validly.
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          May 29 2013: :-)
          Live well!
          Kind regards,
          P.S Do you know why you felt that "kneejerk reaction"?
      • May 29 2013: maybe 'harmful happiness' is e.g. to steal something and being happy one was not caught.
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          Jun 1 2013: Thanks!
          Please see my reply to Bernard White below.
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        May 30 2013: RE: Why the kneejerk? See Fritzie Reisner's suggestion to W. Ying below to gain some insight into my rude behavior.
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        Jun 1 2013: Hi, Bernard White
        I am very sorry I reply late.
        Let's define "valid happiness is the feeling of things being a-step-better for keeping our DNA alive"
        and, the feeling is one of our instincts formed 10,000 years ago by our ancestors from their successful experiences for survival and saved in our DNA.

        Then, the happiness out of the validity scope of our instinct of happiness is the “invalid happiness”.

        We are unable to detect this invalid happiness intuitively
        because we have not bio-evolved to renew our instinct to detect it.

        This invalid happiness is harmful in most cases.
        Such as: taking junk food, drinking alcohol, wearing clothes not for protection,
        ... making too much money to cause greed, inequality, crimes, wars,
        ... “unsustainable” world.

        (See also the first article at
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      May 29 2013: Hi, W. Ying. May I make a suggestion? The best way of really communicating with people typically is not to use vocabulary that others do not know.

      You have explained before that "invalid happiness" is a close translation of a word that people who speak Chinese would understand, but here people will mostly not know what you are talking about.

      As I remember, you mean by "invalid happiness" the pursuit of the wrong goals. Further, and I may remember this incorrectly, you think of wrong goals as pursuing things that were not available ten thousand years ago, which is why the symbol beside your name reads 10,000 years ago norm.

      Do you think it might make sense, rather than repeating "invalid happiness,' which most people here will not understand, just to say something like, "stop pursuing goals or values or things that didn't exist 10,000 years ago?"

      I am only trying to help you and everyone else learn more from your participation.
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        Jun 1 2013: .Hi, Fritzie,
        Thank you very, very much for your help of many times.

        Yes, you are right. I have problems in expression.
        I will try hard to express myself clearly and make more explanations in detail to make people know what I am talking about easier.

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          Jun 2 2013: I don't think you have problems expressing yourself. You do much better than almost any of us would in your native language.

          It would just be good to remember that "invalid happiness" is not an expression native speakers of English will know.
  • May 29 2013: N O
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      May 29 2013: Why?
      • May 30 2013: I believe that there are serious problems with certain personality types. Also. most people are not natural platforms for thought. I could make a list of human monsters that swill go on and on and pn - but that is depressing. Also, brainwashing, propaganda, and advertising are so much better now.