Nihlism

  • VGLythia

    VGLythia (100)

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    I completely disagree in nihilism. If that were true, why would some of us even choose to live when we are given the choice? If there is nothing to look forward to, nothing to work towards, why keep moving when you hit rock bottom?
    February 26th, 2012 at 07:35pm
  • The Master

    The Master (15)

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    VGLythia:
    I completely disagree in nihilism. If that were true, why would some of us even choose to live when we are given the choice? If there is nothing to look forward to, nothing to work towards, why keep moving when you hit rock bottom?
    I don't think you quite understand what nihilism is.

    It means that there is no meaning at all and all things are ultimately pointless. Which I believe is true since I am an atheist and am certain that this universe is for a limited time only. The planet will be destroyed and so will all human endeavour.

    I find it reassuring when I get caught up in a bunch of bullshit and I can retreat from it.

    Also, why are you concerned with truth? It's a philosophical standing. does philosophy need to be universally true? Why does a lack of any meaning to life warrant a stop to everything?
    February 26th, 2012 at 08:45pm
  • wxyz

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    VGLythia:
    I completely disagree in nihilism. If that were true, why would some of us even choose to live when we are given the choice?
    I choose to keep living because I enjoy life. I don't need for there to be a meaning of life in order for that to happen.
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    If there is nothing to look forward to, nothing to work towards, why keep moving when you hit rock bottom?
    Again, a lack of meaning of life, for me, doesn't suddenly mean that there's nothing to look forward to or work towards. Rather than an afterlife, what I look forward to is accomplishing my goals in life and then having a peaceful death, where I can look back at my life feeling satisfied, and then just fall asleep and never wake up.
    February 26th, 2012 at 09:53pm
  • VGLythia

    VGLythia (100)

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    The Master.:
    I don't think you quite understand what nihilism is.
    I do understand what it is, very thoroughly. I guess it's just hard for me to empathize with it, and that is my fault.

    Also, I may have accidentally implied that I think philosophy should be universally true, but that's not what I meant. I was trying to understand why someone would choose to believe that everything is ultimately pointless.
    February 27th, 2012 at 12:00am
  • The Master

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    VGLythia:
    I do understand what it is, very thoroughly. I guess it's just hard for me to empathize with it, and that is my fault.

    Also, I may have accidentally implied that I think philosophy should be universally true, but that's not what I meant. I was trying to understand why someone would choose to believe that everything is ultimately pointless.
    To me, it feels ultimately logical. It doesn't mean I can't have a good life and have fun but I'm well aware of the absurdity of it all. If I am honest, I find it it hard to take someone absolutely seriously if they imply that there is a great big meaning to life.
    February 27th, 2012 at 12:12am
  • leaf's a buzzard

    leaf's a buzzard (100)

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    VGLythia:
    I was trying to understand why someone would choose to believe that everything is ultimately pointless.
    Why are you equating meaning with happiness and meaningless with depression? To me those are two entirely seperate pairs of terms.

    Just because something doesn't have a point doesn't mean you should get hung up about it. It doesn't have to make sense, and you shouldn't need to get an emotional thrill out of it. It just is, and you accept it and move on with your life.

    That's how I view it, anyway.
    February 27th, 2012 at 05:40am
  • wxyz

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    VGLythia:
    I was trying to understand why someone would choose to believe that everything is ultimately pointless.
    Well with something like this, I wouldn't really say that the belief is chosen.
    February 27th, 2012 at 11:43am
  • leaf's a buzzard

    leaf's a buzzard (100)

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    Something else to consider that I've been pondering latley. Though I view the world, and my life in it as something utterly meaningless, pointless, etc... that view is not shared among everyone. Specifically my friends and family.

    Though I do view life as meaningless, I know that what I do does still impact other lives. I don't matter in any sort of grand scheme, but If I were to do something those who know me would react accordingly.

    And that's how I can go about my life without feeling depressed about any sort of hopelessness or meaningless.

    It doesn't need a point. I just need someone to share it with. That's all that matters to me.

    Though this may be Existentialism, rather than Nihilism, I view the two as compatible. The latter is the blank slate in which everything is. The former allows us to live in it.
    February 28th, 2012 at 05:58am
  • ptvjaime

    ptvjaime (1600)

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    I think Nihilism works for people who need the escape from the fact that your actions might actually have a huge impact on the world.

    For instance, one of my close friends is an Atheist and believes in Nihilism, and he has taken that to the point where he believes we should just live it up and stop being so serious, that politics and government and religion are just the concerns of people who need to feel like their boring, everyday actions matter. He believes in finding happiness in the here and the now, and he doesn't believe in an afterlife. Which can be good for some people, as it is for him. It means that he can do what he wants when he wants, lie and cheat and do whatever as long as he never gets caught. After all, if there is no afterlife, he never has to pay the consequences for all the people he hurts.

    I hope there's some kind of afterlife, because I want people who were just awful, rotten, terrible people here to pay for what they've done because we can never make them pay ourselves. I want an afterlife where child molesters are tortured and rapists burned and every means of bad person punished justly for what they've done to other people.
    July 20th, 2012 at 03:52pm
  • wxyz

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    TeamTonyVincent:
    I think Nihilism works for people who need the escape from the fact that your actions might actually have a huge impact on the world.

    For instance, one of my close friends is an Atheist and believes in Nihilism, and he has taken that to the point where he believes we should just live it up and stop being so serious, that politics and government and religion are just the concerns of people who need to feel like their boring, everyday actions matter. He believes in finding happiness in the here and the now, and he doesn't believe in an afterlife. Which can be good for some people, as it is for him. It means that he can do what he wants when he wants, lie and cheat and do whatever as long as he never gets caught. After all, if there is no afterlife, he never has to pay the consequences for all the people he hurts.
    I completely disagree that nihilism is a cop-out's philosophy. I don't think there's a meaning of life, and I certainly believe we should enjoy this life while it lasts, as it's the only one we have as far as we know, but that doesn't make it cool to do bad things because of being under the impression that there are no consequences. I personally like the idea of fellow humans being happy and not suffering, and so if I can ensure that at least one other person dies happy, then so can I. And the idea of a fellow human suffering because of something I've done isn't a very nice one.

    Also, the idea of an afterlife involving supreme justice/punishment of wrong-doers is only really found in a handful of religions, particularly the five main ones. The two ideas are certainly not synonymous.
    TeamTonyVincent:
    I hope there's some kind of afterlife, because I want people who were just awful, rotten, terrible people here to pay for what they've done because we can never make them pay ourselves. I want an afterlife where child molesters are tortured and rapists burned and every means of bad person punished justly for what they've done to other people.
    I'm afraid that sounds to me like a rather unhealthy revenge fantasy. Firstly, how would that be "paying" for what they've done, other than us simply having the knowledge that they're suffering horrifically? If it is indeed that, then, as I said, that sounds a bit sick. And secondly, assuming you believe that this afterlife you speak of would be eternal, there couldn't possibly be such a thing as the people you mentioned being "punished justly", because infinite punishment for finite crimes isn't "just" in any way.
    July 20th, 2012 at 10:28pm
  • chai latte

    chai latte (225)

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    I love nihilist philosophy and for me, it is not depressing at all. I've never specifically applied the term to myself, but I guess if I had to, I'd call myself a nihilist.

    I don't believe in any higher beings or afterlife or spirituality or supernatural anything. I think life and everything it comprises is ultimately meaningless, and that is very comforting to me. The belief that life is pointless is a positive sentiment for me and allows me to live my life to the fullest, enjoying every day for exactly what it is, and keeps me from getting wrapped up in all the bullshit and negativity that plagues the lives of so many others. Nihilism has also immensely helped me get over my fear of death, which used to be irrational and extreme to the point of debilitating. Ever since I adopted this philosophy about three years ago, I've been happier than ever and much more satisfied and fulfilled with life.

    I'm not sure why meaninglessness is equated with depression and negativity, as if just because I think life is pointless that means I'd rather not live at all. That's quite asinine, honestly. For me, it is living for myself, living in the now, and creating my own happiness without regard for the expectations and judgements of others. Of course, as mentioned above, nihilism is no excuse to be a shitty person, but I think that goes along with just having a conscience. I guess you could interpret that as being contradictory, but eh, whatever. It's pointless anyway. XD
    July 21st, 2012 at 04:06am
  • wxyz

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    ^ This, so much. I've come across loads of people saying "if life is meaningless, why don't you just kill yourself? It wouldn't matter." It's almost jaw-dropping that people can make that claim. A meaning of life doesn't automatically assume a reason to live, and similarly, a lack of meaning of life doesn't automatically assume a lack of reason to live. I think life is meaningless, but I enjoy it enough to want to continue it.
    July 21st, 2012 at 02:30pm
  • the god of thunder.

    the god of thunder. (300)

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    chai latte:
    For me, it is living for myself, living in the now, and creating my own happiness without regard for the expectations and judgements of others. Of course, as mentioned above, nihilism is no excuse to be a shitty person, but I think that goes along with just having a conscience. I guess you could interpret that as being contradictory, but eh, whatever. It's pointless anyway. XD
    Exactly !

    Nihilism isn't a practical belief I have, but I think it's fucking awesome. XD
    And I don't think the lack of an afterlife equates to meaningless. Whether or not a person believes in a superior purpose, the human brain is much more powerful than any conscious idea ever will be. The biology of humans is so intricate and selfish, almost, that it creates purposes for itself, without ever actually revealing to us what those reasons are. Then, we invent things like "I need to go to Heaven!" and "I'm meant to change the world!" to convert that intrinsic thing into something we can understand.

    It takes a really damaged or chemically imbalanced person to disregard any moral reasoning. Sure- Nihilism can be used as an excuse to have no responsibility, but that's a sign of a disorder more likely than it is a result of a philosophy.

    On the other hand, I don't think there's any issue in believing in an afterlife or superior being even if it isn't true. Because if that's true, the human consciousness is all that will ever exist. And you might not get to eternally live with God after you die, but you won't realize it, so it doesn't matter. That's comforting to me. I believe in some form of God, but it doesn't matter if God exists or not in the end. If there is nothing after death, all that is relevant is what you used your consciousness for while you were alive, and hey, you'll never be able to regret it. tehe isn't that something?
    May 13th, 2013 at 04:05am
  • Eunoic

    Eunoic (100)

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    I, unlike the majority, find Nihilism uplifting, not depressing. Anything and everything you do means nothing. The way you look doesn't matter, the way you act doesn't matter, nothing matters.

    People who embrace nihilism can take it two ways:
    1. Since nothing I do matters, I guess I won't do anything
    2. Since nothing I do matters, I guess I can do whatever I want to, no limits.

    I choose to use nihilism to empower myself. Nobody can tell me what I can or should do. I only have one life, so I'm going to live it for me.
    August 4th, 2013 at 04:32am
  • lonely girl.

    lonely girl. (250)

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    I agree with nihilism. I'm quite a pessimistic person in general, and this is basically my thought process - at least for more serious matters. I don't think that anything we do does matter because we aren't going to be here to watch it unfold or anything.

    Yes, there are people who 'leave their mark' on this world, but they too shall be forgotten. Nobody is going to be remembered forever and the people that our grandparents looked up to are probably not the tiniest bit significant in our own lives. The world is going to end someday, and all the hard work people have put in to making the world a presumably 'better place' is going to be wasted, and therefore it doesn't really matter what you do, it's going to be thrown away anyway. As for the more general things, such as looks, it doesn't matter what you, you only have one life and you may as well spend as you please.

    On the other side of the coin, I also find nihilism quite free, instead of depressing and such. You throw all of society's expectations out of the window and are happy and free by not feeling burdened or constricted.
    August 4th, 2013 at 11:24am
  • hazuki.

    hazuki. (175)

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    I'm not into idealist philosophies to start with and I think Nihilism is a bit too detached from real world to actually work. It completely ignores the fact that people are at some extent determined by their environment, by other people, by the culture they were born in. Then I'm never actually free, since I'm influenced in my choices and in my way of thinking by other people's opinions, by my own beliefs (sometimes they're wrong and limit my choices), by moral values and so on. Existentialists as Nietzsche and Kierkegaard never believed we're actually free, quite the opposite -their "√úbermensch" and "knight of faith" are ideals/models of freedom and perfection that don't really exist in the real world.

    At this point, I think existentialism has a much more realistic view on life and on what being free really means.
    August 4th, 2013 at 07:54pm
  • atlas -

    atlas - (855)

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    I think that a lot of people know deep down that nihilism is true, but are afraid of it because that's basically taking your reason to live. Everyone wants a purpose and something to stand for, something to work towards, but know deep down that there is nothing--that there is only oblivion, and eventually our universe will end and give birth to another universe and humans will die and that we are only here by chance and that, in the scheme of things, the universe doesn't give a shit about us.

    I think that people know this and understand that it means we have no purpose, but have turned to religion to mask that and make sure that everyone thinks we have a purpose.
    August 28th, 2013 at 12:08pm
  • hazuki.

    hazuki. (175)

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    @ discipulus amoris
    I don't like this so called "passive" nihilism where everything is meaningless, period. To me it sounds like an improper oversimplication of the concept of "nihilism", anyway.

    I sympathize a little more with the active nihilism that Nietzsche himself defended, which at this point is a lot alike with existencialism: that life itself is meaningless as in, there's not a pre-established meaning to our existence, therefore we shouldn't live by what society and religion tell us to, but we give our own meaning and purpose to our lives and then we get to consciously decide our morals and the values that are truly important to us (the transfiguration of all values).
    August 28th, 2013 at 02:28pm