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Alex Hutchins

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What does it mean to be human?

As a College professor, I start the first day of every class by asking my students this question. Needless to say, they do not know how to answer it, even though they have previously had psychology and philosophy courses prior to the Junior/Senior classes that I typically teach.

So, if students do not know how to answer this question right away, then my next question is, do the rest of us know how to answer this question right away or would it require some reflection?

Or, does anyone really care?

I am sure that it has different meaning for different people but would it also have different meanings for different cultures?

Does being human mean some different in Christianity than it does for Muslims or people of the Jewish faith or agnostics for that matter?

Do we need to prove that we exist in order to answer this question? And, while you are pondering this one, let me explain: I am talking about "I think therefore I am," but is this life "real" or is this life a metaphor for the life that we will all be experiencing after death? If this life therefore is not real, does it matter that we exist and furthermore, does being human have any meaning at all?

Are we human because we oftentimes do not practice what we preach?

Are we human because we can skillfully put down the thoughts and comments of others?

Are we human because we are arrogant or wealthy although I see the two as mutually exclusive myself?

Are we human because we have faith and hypocritically live out that faith in our daily lives?

Are we human because we are a racist and have found clever ways to hide why we feel that way?

Are we human because we have cheated on our spouses?

Are we human because we like to engage in wars all over the globe so that we can prove we are better than others, or stronger... while really wanting to impose our way of life on them?

Are we human because we cannot accept cultural diversity as the new norm?

What are your thoughts as to what it means to be human?

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    Jul 6 2013: Then find The Immeasurable Mind.
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      Jul 6 2013: Our thoughts which erupt from our minds faster than the speed of light have no boundaries and therefore cannot be measured by any standards known today. Our thoughts, composed of strings, vibrating strands of energy that cannot be seen, move out into the universe and will be forever unmolested. The beauty of the human mind is that it is still very much unknown to us but what is known is that it is being under utilized and I am not sure that anyone knows how to measure its potential capacity. And, if there are parallel universes which some scientist now believe due to String Theory, then is it not possible for our minds to be hardwired to those universes in case the human race ever becomes that developed?

      Therefore, your circular reasoning definitions are not applicable in this particular scenario...
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        Jul 6 2013: There is a gap that one can notice if one so desires, between hypothesis and cold fact, here now.
        The word "what is" refers to the present situation that humanity is in.
        The word "could be" is unrealized potential, which is hypothetical.
        There is a visible difference between "actual" and "potential" or hypothetical.
        For those who care to take note.

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