A collection of my thoughts on life itself!
Before reading further, ask yourself how good your self-control is. What do you desire the most and can you constrain yourself if it required hurting someone else (yourself included)? That is the angle I think of when it comes to self-control.
Unlike Peterson’s 12 rules of life, a book I didn’t even read, each person needs their own more specific rules. For example, Peterson’s 12 rules will not prevent you from gambling. That is a rule you have to impose on yourself. And you’ll have multiple rules like this. It is almost impossible to enforce rules on yourself, unless you are one of those Christians from Hollywood media who whips their own backs. Self-harm is not the answer! We need a good way to prevent ourselves from breaking our own rules.
Laws may be meant to be broken, but your own code is something you should NEVER bend. In no circumstances, should your rules be broken or bent. If you have even a single strict rule, it will be tempting to break it on a whim. This is what we want to avoid! Although breaking your rules is never okay, it is fine to spend some time, at least an hour, contemplating whether your rules help you achieve your goals and good desires and modifying them as necessarily. This is indeed similar to a moderator moderating themselves. It requires immense self-control, and this article is for people who are capable of self-control, but CHOOSE to not exert it. I say good desires, because gambling is in my opinion a bad desire. Even a person against gambling can succumb to the desire to gamble! I know I’m using this gambling example, but it truly is an easy one since I’m against gambling, but think people should be allowed to partake in it.
Progressing further with my gambling topic - gambling real value like money or time - let’s say someone bets you $1 on something stupid. This is the temptation I am talking about. These are the kinds of scenarios where your self-control will be put to the test. Although $1 is nothing to me, it’s the principles that matter the most. No matter how small the monetary value is and how rich you are, never accept such a bet! When you are a millionaire/billionaire, it’s not really gambling. It would be gaming since you would be “gambling” for fun and not in order to make money. You are playing to be entertained; a very expensive habit and form of entertainment. A rule about spending would have to be used to constrain yourself instead of a rule about gambling. Gambling, at least to me, is the action of betting money in order to gain more money. If you already expect to lose, then it’s not gambling. It’s possibly a poor choice of entertainment. I like watching people gamble, but would never participate in it. Money and time are valuables and I know the loss of them hits hard after you lose. Especially if you worked to get it.
This feeling of losing, doesn’t pertain to only gambling. Trading stocks (picking), buying non-backed crypto-currency1. These two are also gambling under the guise of “financial security” and “investing.” As proof, I will present Zoom (ZM), Moderna (MRNA), DocuSign (DOCU), TerraLuna (LUNA1-USD and UST-USD), SQUID token 😂, IRON finance, countless DeFi staking pools that got hacked, countless crypto exchanges that got hacked. There’s simply no guarantee that the stock or crypto you pick won’t plummet due to some corruption, scandal, “hack”, or “attack” unbeknownst to you!
I tried my best to make this thought as short as possible. Simply put, we all know about putting our needs over others, but I say we should even put our own wants before others. This is the way most people operate. It takes a while, but at a certain point, people are putting their wants over others needs, so there’s no point in hiding the truth. By others, I mean strangers. Your friends and family most likely fall into your wants, so they wouldn’t be included in “others.”
Conscious life is precious. It is scarce, unique, and allows us to experience the world and our own thoughts. Our brain is one massive computer connected and can control many parts of our bodies including our senses. This lets us partake in many activities that make us feel a variety of emotions including pleasure through the release of chemical and hormones.
Life is precious, but what are the goals? Well, the primary goal is to survive. This is evident pretty clear and we are given reproductive organs to ensure something survives beyond our death.
Surviving is the primary goal, but what are the secondaries? This is where objectivity starts to fade out of play. We can begin my analyzing which state of mind is the most ideal; what mindset contributes to the perfect life the most? For sake of simplicity, I will reduce the set of minds to happiness, moderate stress (about what though), or contentedness.
If you are always happy, this emotion will be numbed and you will have even higher standards for being happy. This is wrong since at a certain point, you will lose your humanity.
If you are content, you will never do new things or prioritize ideas bigger than yourself. This is wrong since, life isn’t only about achieving sustainable survivability. Content here means you could lose your job and it wouldn’t affect a thing in your life because you have enough saved and own enough property. I consider this to be the humble retirement.
If you are moderately stressed however, you have the potential to become happy and content at different times. You are vulnerable to being sad, but the moderate stress always keeps you going without requiring you to stop and think for a second. Once you stop and think you will enter the cycle of thoughts, which isn’t ideal since you will end up asking self-existence questions. Now the thing is, the moderate stress is obviously a job or a passionate position. We have not brought ethics into the picture yet.
I remember trying to write a morality and ethics article months ago, but found in incredibly hard to complete. So I will try generalizing as much as possible. The thing with morality and ethics is that we are incapable of memorizing what is right or wrong, and so our decision making skills has to be intuitive and our core principles extensible.
We can stem partial morality from the golden rule. Which is, to not do unto others what you wouldn’t do to yourself. I used this instead of treating others the way you want to be treated because there are some corner cases where you really don’t want to be treating someone the way you want to be treated! Now the biggest problem with both statements is that sometimes the other person is the one that is breaking the golden rule.
An example is smoking in public. You pollute the environment and the general smell around you. It’s an infringement of the people walking by. The golden rule simply cannot guide a person irritated by the smell of cigarettes into making the right decision. We have to bring about a new principle.
Unlike the NAP where common counter-points are hardline interpreations that violence can not be used, the PAP I bring about is flexible in dealing with agression that may or may not be violent.
The progressive aggression is the idea that you start an interaction with a level of aggression equivalent or slightly less than what is already at play. A verbal shouting match can be met with verbal shouting. A physical threat could be met with a defusing comment or even a detention if it had some merit to it. Something like a death threat on Twitter isn’t really based on anything.
Ideally in the cigarette scenario, you should tell the person to stop, tell them to stop or else you’ll do it for them, and then just put out their cigarette by yourself. There’s a big catch though. The last action is illegal. Thus we have to decide the answer to a big question.
Are our morals and ethics bounded by the environment (laws) we’re in? Or do morals and ethics go beyond laws and should take greater precedent over laws even if it means being criminalized? It depends. Like I said before, fighting for oneselve is more important than fighting for others. Therefore, it sometimes comes down to personal benefit.
Where I stem my opinion from is understanding that laws are made by people and people can be immoral. There is no reason to abide blindly to all laws if one of theme could be rooted in immorality itself. For example the right for homosexuals to engage in their bedrooms. It’s not immoral to be homosexual, so there’s no reason to follow those anti-homosexual laws in some countries. On the other hand, you cannot force someone to improve your life; Even when the action is morally sound, it is not immoral to feel uncomfortable about the action. For example self-defense. Many people in Canada are uncomfortable with the idea that you should be able to defend your home from an intruder. It is worse in the UK. “If someone is robbing your house with you in it, you should just let them otherwise you face assault charges.”