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Aren't all conflicts we have, no matter if on a global or personal scale, based on either lack of resources or sex?

I recently thought about why conficts arise and basically it is, i guess, because every person or folk tries to secure the most resources for themselves. Every conflict we have on earth is basically a struggle for resources, such as food, water, energy carrier, and sex. This is because we are biolgically programmed to get into a position were we can breed effectively. And that's really all there is to it.

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    Aug 21 2013: Resources and sex are obviously responsible for many conflicts, but equally obviously not for all.. Love of God (religion) has brought on more hate and horror than most other factors. Not so strange; in the Old Testament, Israel's tribal god Yahweh (i.e., Jehovah) set the example by personally killing thousands left and right whenever the occasion arose, until in the Flood he killed everyone except a handful. Those who love him seem to also love his ways, and to hate to the death those who do not love him and his ways in the right way, as we see especially in the Middle East today.
  • Aug 19 2013: There an aspect that's missing, if one looks at it all as a consumptive issue, then you've overlooked the fact, there is enough food, land, and equality in male vs female populations for all to go around right now. So why war?
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    Aug 17 2013: Hi Florian,

    Nice assumption there, but the truth of the matter is that conflict arises with thought.
  • Aug 11 2013: what about hate? war over resources less land? mass murder an psychopaths? Oh! and my personal favorite religion, all these things have nothing to do with resources.
    • Aug 11 2013: Hate arises out of inevitable interpersonal conflicts for the above-mentioned, land equals resources, mass murders - depends on if you talk about psychopaths or genocide - the first case would be an exception, that is also why we consider them as abnormal, the latter is clearly about resources, if you take e.g. the holocaust of ww2, this is how the nazis obtained cheap labor force (for the processing of resources), they also disseized jews, and therefore obtained resources. And religion has been used as a way for the clergy for suppression of the masses and gain of resources all troughout history, and still today. Religion is used for control of sexual intercourse and the stigmatizing of polygamy, namely marriage. Also was/is religion an instrument for the powerful to pass on their wealth to their descendants. Prime example is the caste system, where certain people are only allowed to marry people of the same stand, another one is the marriage among aristocrats.
      • Aug 11 2013: So not all conflict is over recourses at least you agree random hate is conflict and there's plenty of it mostly fueled by sex but there are many people who hate for no reason.
        • Aug 12 2013: I admit that random hate would be an exemption, yes, and maybe there are some people that really hate randomly, because they are mentally sick. But i think that healty people don't really hate randomly, i just think that the cause is not obvious, sometimes not even to themselves...
      • Aug 12 2013: Well atleast you agree with the random hate because many people do it with no care at all. But the real question pertaining to yours is did they get that way because of recourse struggles? less money no women ect.
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    Aug 10 2013: Typical Ted converstation, lots of touchy feely reletivistic new age non-sense. Converstation mentions sex and resources and not one commenter literate enough to Mention Marx or Freud.
    • Aug 10 2013: The worst part is that you're right, though I know that Freud pretty much agrees with me.
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    Aug 10 2013: .. .

    My answer:

    ( to Florian Wicher
    16 hours ago: that is an interesting observation, but it does't say anything about why you would want to possess money, which is, quite obvious, because you can buy things with it.)


    It says our "greed" is out of the valid scope of our instinct for happiness.
    Or, "greed" makes harmful invalid happiness.
    It means, I can buy things with it, but it hurts our symbiosis for survival.
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    Aug 8 2013: May I suggest that you Read Jack Goody's "Death, Property and the Ancestors" .
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    Aug 8 2013: You can drop sex. Fundamentally its a means to claim resources too.
    • Aug 8 2013: i think reproduction is different, sex is a need like the need for food etc. and reources we acquire are supposed to fulfill those needs. Except for sex can't be fulfilled by comsuming resources...
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        Aug 10 2013: You mean sex the idea? Well it is entirely psychological. Depending on the circumstances sex the idea can be an expression of love, lust, claim, submission, safety or control. I was thinking of procreative sex only.
  • Aug 8 2013: I would rank (according to the magnitude or extent of) the bases of the reason for confict as follows:
    1. National or territorial hostility due to prejudice, hatred or pure "patrioticism" (national pride).
    2. Extensive religious conflict due to the intolerance of one with anther.
    3. Resource grabbing, including teriitory, natural resouces or indutrial manpower (colonialism). However, the international free trade system has relieved the degree of tension due to resource grabing conflicts
    4. Sex should be way down the list, especially among democratic countries, because it is of individual, instead of group, nature.
    Finally , let me comment on the manpower issue in the post industrial world. Generally we don't have to increase manpower by colonial expansion, most advanced industrial nations could attract immigrants with high technical skills without any conflict. Actually, many countries are trying to limit immigration, especialy the low skilled ones. Furthermore, the current problem for many countries, is not that they need more people, but they need a smaller population,
  • Aug 8 2013: Yes, it is for resources and our Human Needs, should be Human Rghts, free to and for all.
    But, for some other comments posted here I have to say, "No, no, no."
    Our conflicts are primarily based or caused by fear.
    Greed is fear. Anger is fear. Envy is fear. Jealousy is fear. False pride is fear. Resentment is fear.
    Sloth is fear. Procrastination is fear. Gluttony is fear. The human being is a deeply, fearful being.
    Fear one will not get what they want or need, or fear they will lose what they have.
    Then, fear begets a quest for power, for acquisition, for killing, for war, for enslavement,
    for control and so on. It isn't human nature.
    It is humans appraising their environment to see if it is friendly, supportive, nurturing, safe,
    and will provide. Then humans act accordingly and if they are afraid, if it won't provide, or they
    are unable to get their needs met, then they will
    act or behave in what we call deviant ways, negative ways, horrible ways and even evil ways.
    And this is all caused by a system that is unjust to begin with. It is corrupt by default and cannot
    be made just. It has to be done away with and a new, just system put in its place. A system that has
    no seeds for corruption. That is possible and humans know this, but they haven't done it. Some don't believe it.
    There is no such thing as a criminal mind unless and until we have a system in which there are no
    reasons, causes or conditions that would make one commit a crime. Then, when someone does, you
    might be able to say they have a criminal mind. What have you been told? There are criminals who are
    just criminals, criminally-minded and always will be. Not so. They are trying to survive and survival is not
    a moral issue.
    We are programmed to survive but in a corrupt system, survival functions on and off of, fear, inequality, poverty,
    slavery, greed, crime, war and death. Tell me those are just, right and good, and what you wish for.
    Tell me those are also your needs. They are not mine.
  • Aug 8 2013: No.

    Power is a big cause of conflict, and so is religion. That period of time called the cold war was not about resources or sex, but about conflicting concepts about governance.

    One of the biggest causes of conflict among adults is the infantile attitude, I want what I want and there is no good reason why I can't have it, and I want it now.

    Those are just a few. Humans are ingenious at finding excuses for conflicts. Some people think that punching someone in the nose is fun.
    • Aug 8 2013: But why were there two countries and their allies leading war? Their goal was to eliminate their enemy and gain more territory and power - which again leads us to more resources. Think of it closely: Power doesn't have intrinsic value, does it?

      And why do some people think it is fun to punch someone in the face? It is an unelegant way of showing dominance, dominating someone means that you have power over him and can get him to do whatever you want... See where this is going? ;)
      • Aug 8 2013: In my opinion, you seem to be making assumptions about other people's motives, as though you can read their thoughts and emotions. Some people punch someone in the nose, and find the experience enjoyable, and want to do it again. It is fun, a basic human motivation. It has nothing to do with showing dominance or gaining power or any other motive

        In my estimation, based on my reading of history, and current events, power is a basic human motivation, so yes, power has intrinsic value to some people. I suppose it might be possible for some psychologist to trace the need for power to some other, more basic human need, but I do not think that is very useful information. Some people pursue power and always want more power.

        Regarding resources, many people who fight over resources already have plenty. The motive is not the need for resources but simply greed. When countries fight a war over oil, the basic conflict is between the millionaires in the two countries. The poor and middle class folks who send their children to fight the war could readily find a compromise about the oil, but are not given the chance. Instead they are told lies about the real reason for the war.

        After observing conflict for over sixty years, the reasons for it still keep me stumped. I think that conflict is natural for humans. We anger too easily and too readily assume that others have bad motives. What we consider to be fair is often more favorable to ourselves than to others. Too many people are just selfish and do not care that their actions hurt others. I think there are many many reasons for conflict, and some people need no reason at all, they find conflict to be satisfying in some strange way.

        Another motive for conflict is the human ego. Some adults never get over that childish need to feel that they are better than someone else.

        Simplifying human conflict might feel good, but in my opinion, it is unrealistic and not useful at all.
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    Aug 8 2013: we need to go venus project forums, and advocate the idea to change their notion to "resource and sex based economy". that would be so much fun.
    • Aug 8 2013: don't know the forums, what are they about? ^^
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    Aug 8 2013: .

    No! They are not based on lack of them.

    They are based on greed.
    Money makes the greed.
    • Aug 8 2013: Alright, that's an easy one - Why are you greedy for money? To buy stuff... Food, Gas etc. So you want resources! But if there were enough resources for you and everyone else you wouldn't need to buy them... you could just get them! -> and this is what i am trying to proof ;)
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        Aug 9 2013: .

        My answer:

        10,000 years ago, we had excess resources (mainly food) in the nature.
        We could not store it.
        So, there was no greed.

        Today, we change the excess resources into money.
        We “store” it.
        Then, there is greed.
        • Aug 9 2013: that is an interesting observation, but it does't say anything about why you would want to possess money, which is, quite obvious, because you can buy things with it.
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    Aug 7 2013: No, they mostly arise out of conflicting perceptions and feelings.
    • Aug 8 2013: Okay, that's a tough one... So: Precisely spoken, conficts don't arise out of conflicting perceptions and feelings themselves, you and I would get along just fine, as long as we accepted each others points of view, right? Tolerance. The problem starts as soon as people become intolerant for other ways of perceptions, other feelings, religions, ideologies etc. And then they start a fight, a war, whatever. Now the one person/group that wins, makes the call, so they dominate other people. And when you dominate people, you have already won. As long as you are the leader, you get the resources you want.
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        Aug 8 2013: I think we agree, Florian, if we clarify terms. Your original question was to ask what conflicts are "based on." I believe they're based on differing perceptions and feelings, although domination of resources may become involved at some point.

        Our own conflict over this subject arose out of different perceptions, but we will not be fighting over resources.
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    Aug 7 2013: Greed for more resource is definitely a major reason of conflict which is a bit unique with in human compared to other species of animal kingdom.
    Maintaining a HAREM for breeding is not uncommon in other species but I doubt human to consider sex for breeding anymore that much these days at least in developed or even developing economy .
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      Aug 8 2013: .

      Yes!
      Without the greed of invalid (harmful) happiness,
      our resource is more than enough.
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    Aug 7 2013: Every individual has a unique prism to see the world ,
    if we donot understand and respect this fact conflicts will rule our lives.
    • Aug 7 2013: but you could also interpret this whole fight-for-acceptance-thing as necessary to proof our value to society in order to not end up as an underdog, right?