Why do we love scenery?

on fundamental matters such as existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind and ethics.

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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#61  Postby jamest » Feb 06, 2018 12:05 am

I'm not sure where to start, so I'll churn out something and await responses...

The primary thing of note is that if our sense of beauty was related to our sense of well-being, then we should only find beauty in green lands with a pleasant climate and plenty of wildlife (food, all year round). Of course, we don't. Indeed, some of the most bland scenery on Earth fulfils said criteria. Conversely, some of the most beautiful scenery in the world/solar-system/universe fails on all counts. I shouldn't really need to give examples to rational/intelligent people, so I won't. You all know what I'm talking about. Hence, the conclusion to draw from this is that our sense of beauty regards scenery has fuck-all to do with our physical needs. That's a MASSIVE kick up the arse [of course] for anyone proclaiming that our [mental] traits have their basis in [Darwinian] physical needs.

I also wanted to address laklak's post in which he rightly stated that a sense of beauty was subjective/individual. He is of course right, in the same way that we all have different tastes in music. However, why he failed to see here that diverse opinion undermines science yet supports idealism/theism... I do not know. I mean, if there's a scientific theory, it must apply to everything in the sense that everything will have a predictable outcome (a formula accounting for it all). However, one [in principle] cannot have a singular formula predicting subjective/unpredictable preferences for scenery. Indeed, given that one's own preferences for scenery can change at the drop of a hat (for instance, by encountering some hitherto unexpected landscape which had a profound affect upon one's psyche - as I myself have experienced during my life).

The evolution argument is bollocks, because there are numerous arts which [some] humans love which have only been created within fairly recent human history. Poetry, for example. Others amongst you might cite philosophy. Bastards! Anyway, I digress. The point being that although we were 'being artistic' a [fairly] long time ago, as is demonstrable via the cave-art we find [and other things], our 'sense of beauty' has come a LONG way in such a short time which cannot at all be explained, so short that none of it can be explained by our physical needs - especially when much of it transcends them. Why would a fucking ape [such as I] love to see the sights of the Nevada desert, for instance? It has nothing to do with acquiring food/drink/wealth. I'm purely in love with the images I've seen of it for their own sake. Indeed, I know that going there might be detrimental to my health. Likewise, to a much greater extent, those who went to the moon and Everest, The Poles, etc.., even after they'd seen photos of them. Such is our craving to see such beauty, we put our lives on the line. How the fuck can Darwin accommodate such attitudes of self-harm?

I'll leave it at that for now. I just wanted to show the piss-takers amongst you that my guns are indeed loaded, so shut the fuck up whining.

eta a correct spelling of accommodate, which I already knew! Angry at myself!! :nono:
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#62  Postby Thommo » Feb 06, 2018 12:23 am

jamest wrote:The primary thing of note is that if our sense of beauty was related to our sense of well-being, then we should only find beauty in green lands with a pleasant climate and plenty of wildlife (food, all year round).


Why?

In general "is related" is a much weaker condition than "varies only with".

jamest wrote:Hence, the conclusion to draw from this is that our sense of beauty regards scenery has fuck-all to do with our physical needs. That's a MASSIVE kick up the arse [of course] for anyone proclaiming that our [mental] traits have their basis in [Darwinian] physical needs.


But the conclusion doesn't follow.

jamest wrote:I also wanted to address laklak's post in which he rightly stated that a sense of beauty was subjective/individual. He is of course right, in the same way that we all have different tastes in music. However, why he failed to see here that diverse opinion undermines science yet supports idealism/theism... I do not know.


Of course, it doesn't actually do that, since there are physical differences in the brains of the different individuals who subjectively vary. So whilst they are relatively similar and we expect tastes to also be relatively similar it's transparently silly to suggest that things that differ in their makeup cannot result in a variety of outcomes.

It's also worth mentioning that you are contradicting one of your oft repeated claims that evidence cannot undermine a metaphysical position here.

jamest wrote:I mean, if there's a scientific theory, it must apply to everything in the sense that everything will have a predictable outcome (a formula accounting for it all).


Ignoring the conflation of science and physicalism here, this also isn't true. There are already probabilistic theories such as quantum mechanics that form an important part of the body of modern scientific knowledge.

jamest wrote:The evolution argument is bollocks, because there are numerous arts which [some] humans love which have only been created within fairly recent human history. Poetry, for example.


That's a non sequitur. A particular art being a recent development does not mean that the intellectual capacity to form preferences and distinguish between a variety of sounds or sights didn't evolve much, much earlier. Communication and accompanying preferences for tones, rhythms and patterns of thought are found millions of years back in evolutionary history.

jamest wrote:The point being that although we were 'being artistic' a [fairly] long time ago, as is demonstrable via the cave-art we find [and other things], our 'sense of beauty' has come a LONG way in such a short time which cannot at all be explained


I think you need to quantify how you measure "how far" our "sense of beauty" has come before you can demand an explanation. It is not readily apparent that any change in our sense of beauty has outpaced our cognitive development.

jamest wrote:Likewise, to a much greater extent, those who went to the moon and Everest, The Poles, etc.., even after they'd seen photos of them. Such is our craving to see such beauty, we put our lives on the line. How the fuck can Darwin accomoddate such attitudes of self-harm?


Again, you're conflating wildly disparate issues here. People generally don't report the reasons they go to such places as for the beauty, but out of a sense of adventure, challenge and exploration.

The answer to how Darwinism accommodates it is quite simple though - survival of the fittest. Those for whom such desires prove detrimental to their chance of reproducing are less likely to reproduce. But the majority of people who have the traits of seeking challenge, adventure and exploration, who are willing to take risks are in fact reproductively successful.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#63  Postby felltoearth » Feb 06, 2018 12:24 am

Our draw to natural scenery might be an offshoot of our physical and mental need to connect with nature.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nature_deficit_disorder
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#64  Postby jamest » Feb 06, 2018 1:14 am

It's a bit late here and I'm tired, but I should at least link you guys to this related thread I've just started in the philosophy forum:

http://www.rationalskepticism.org/philo ... l#p2612941
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#65  Postby SafeAsMilk » Feb 06, 2018 1:43 am

jamest wrote:No, it's not childish. I respect that there are different forums for different kinds of discussion, especially so when it comes to the social forum. Notwithstanding the fact that I've been in trouble before [in the early days] for talking [my] bollocks outside of the philosophy forum. Indeed, my decision to wait a few days to see if one of the mods moved the discussion was the rational/mature thing to do. Given that there's been no response to that and given that people are starting to take the piss, I will henceforth talk freely in this thread. If some fugger moans at me for doing so, please be aware that there are icicles on the current badger I have within my freezer!

I think it's safe to say that nobody (official or otherwise) cares if you start a discussion thread in somewhere other than philosophy. I'm willing to be the times you were pinged were when you took someone else's thread, and made it about your philosophy. So, uh, keep your badgers I guess?
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#66  Postby Thommo » Feb 06, 2018 1:47 am

jamest wrote:It's a bit late here and I'm tired, but I should at least link you guys to this related thread I've just started in the philosophy forum:

http://www.rationalskepticism.org/philo ... l#p2612941


That doesn't seem to have anything to do with this conversation. It seems to amount to saying "there's an aesthetic component to our appreciation of biodiversity", which yes, I'd agree with. Doesn't have the least thing to do with how our capacity to appreciate things evolved or whether such-and-such person's incredulity at that notion is an argument for some metaphysics or other though.

There seems to be a continuation of a very black and white, simplistic thought process there admittedly, and a very combative tone. You seem to be implying that an aesthetic component is the only component that could matter in our value system and challenging people to "admit" it, as if it's obvious that it's all or nothing.

The same seems to be true here, there's some sort of assumption that if something evolved it must have evolved only to be functional and only to be perfect in its function. Evolution and indeed nature doesn't really work like that though.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#67  Postby jamest » Feb 06, 2018 1:55 am

SafeAsMilk wrote:
jamest wrote:No, it's not childish. I respect that there are different forums for different kinds of discussion, especially so when it comes to the social forum. Notwithstanding the fact that I've been in trouble before [in the early days] for talking [my] bollocks outside of the philosophy forum. Indeed, my decision to wait a few days to see if one of the mods moved the discussion was the rational/mature thing to do. Given that there's been no response to that and given that people are starting to take the piss, I will henceforth talk freely in this thread. If some fugger moans at me for doing so, please be aware that there are icicles on the current badger I have within my freezer!

I think it's safe to say that nobody (official or otherwise) cares if you start a discussion thread in somewhere other than philosophy. I'm willing to be the times you were pinged were when you took someone else's thread, and made it about your philosophy. So, uh, keep your badgers I guess?

I respect you for your intelligence. I had hoped that you were also sincere. I'm sorely disappointed to find otherwise. Your arse will shortly follow. I mean, it's going to be very sore.

I've tried breaking the icicles off, but they're too tough. Sorry. Do you want a last cigarette or something? :scratch:
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#68  Postby Thommo » Feb 06, 2018 2:01 am

Why do you have to be so personal and so childish?
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#69  Postby jamest » Feb 06, 2018 2:33 am

Thommo wrote:Why do you have to be so personal and so childish?

As a materialist/physicalist, you should find no objection to me being personal. That you do, undermines your whole fucking shebang. There's no 'personal' in machine/robot.

The bottom-line is that I don't retain your retarded mindset. The fact that I treat you as an individual is a reflection of my beliefs. That is, I have an excuse for my emotions and humour, nay politics. You've got fuck all but Darwin on your side. And he's an ugly cunt too.

Let's face it, you'll get lots of thumbs-ups here, but only from thumbs made in your mould. In centuries to come, your thumbs will all be viewed in the same vein as those thumbs possessed by all sorts of people from the past, including religious people.

The atheist inquisition is [in some sense] no less grotesque than the Xian inquisitions history speaks of. It's all about myopia. If you think for a second that you're less myopic than anyone you could mention from history, then you're deluded. More forgiving perhaps, but no less myopic.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#70  Postby SafeAsMilk » Feb 06, 2018 2:37 am

jamest wrote:I'm not sure where to start, so I'll churn out something and await responses...

The primary thing of note is that if our sense of beauty was related to our sense of well-being, then we should only find beauty in green lands with a pleasant climate and plenty of wildlife (food, all year round).

That's not true at all. As I've already stated, it isn't necessary for an evolved feature to only be extremely good at helping us survive. Even if it is true that it evolved to help us find places that are pleasant with many resources, it isn't necessarily so that the same person couldn't also find other things beautiful that have nothing to do at all with those advantageous goals.

Of course, we don't. Indeed, some of the most bland scenery on Earth fulfils said criteria. Conversely, some of the most beautiful scenery in the world/solar-system/universe fails on all counts. I shouldn't really need to give examples to rational/intelligent people, so I won't. You all know what I'm talking about. Hence, the conclusion to draw from this is that our sense of beauty regards scenery has fuck-all to do with our physical needs. That's a MASSIVE kick up the arse [of course] for anyone proclaiming that our [mental] traits have their basis in [Darwinian] physical needs.

Again, you don't understand how evolution works. See above.

I also wanted to address laklak's post in which he rightly stated that a sense of beauty was subjective/individual. He is of course right, in the same way that we all have different tastes in music. However, why he failed to see here that diverse opinion undermines science yet supports idealism/theism... I do not know.

It doesn't. Evolution finds solutions through diversity.

I mean, if there's a scientific theory, it must apply to everything in the sense that everything will have a predictable outcome (a formula accounting for it all). However, one [in principle] cannot have a singular formula predicting subjective/unpredictable preferences for scenery. Indeed, given that one's own preferences for scenery can change at the drop of a hat (for instance, by encountering some hitherto unexpected landscape which had a profound affect upon one's psyche - as I myself have experienced during my life).

If there is a formula, calling it complicated would be the understatement of the millenium. Saying that you don't see how it could possibly be is not a very strong argument. There is certainly nothing in evolution that says our preferences can't change. If anything, your argument that our preferences are bestowed upon us is more likely to predict that what you like is what you like, regardless of how you interact with the physical world.

The evolution argument is bollocks, because there are numerous arts which [some] humans love which have only been created within fairly recent human history. Poetry, for example. Others amongst you might cite philosophy. Bastards! Anyway, I digress. The point being that although we were 'being artistic' a [fairly] long time ago, as is demonstrable via the cave-art we find [and other things], our 'sense of beauty' has come a LONG way in such a short time which cannot at all be explained, so short that none of it can be explained by our physical needs - especially when much of it transcends them.

Again, see above. You don't understand how evolution works, and there's no reason to accept your assertions that our "sense of beauty" has come a long way or that it cannot be explained. We've developed artistic language over time, but people still find the art made by ancient peoples beautiful.

Why would a fucking ape [such as I] love to see the sights of the Nevada desert, for instance? It has nothing to do with acquiring food/drink/wealth. I'm purely in love with the images I've seen of it for their own sake. Indeed, I know that going there might be detrimental to my health. Likewise, to a much greater extent, those who went to the moon and Everest, The Poles, etc.., even after they'd seen photos of them. Such is our craving to see such beauty, we put our lives on the line. How the fuck can Darwin accommodate such attitudes of self-harm?

It obviously hasn't harmed you, evolutionarily speaking. You're married with kids, right? Didn't prevent you from passing on your genes. Get it yet? Everything doesn't have to be "it gets me food and shelter or else it's immediately deleted from the gene pool".

I'll leave it at that for now. I just wanted to show the piss-takers amongst you that my guns are indeed loaded, so shut the fuck up whining.

I'd recommend a little humility here, since you've clearly got far, far more confidence than knowledge when it comes to evolution.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#71  Postby Thommo » Feb 06, 2018 2:52 am

jamest wrote:
Thommo wrote:Why do you have to be so personal and so childish?

As a materialist/physicalist, you should find no objection to me being personal.


Here we go again. :roll:

Don't tell me what I think. You clearly don't know.

To state the obvious there's absolutely nothing in physicalism that says people don't have emotions, values and social inclinations. You cannot possibly misunderstand what physicalism says this badly, can you?

ETA: Just to be clear, physicalism says that everything is (underpinned by the) physical, in a clear statement that would be wherever any value differs, there must be an accompanying physical difference.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#72  Postby SafeAsMilk » Feb 06, 2018 2:53 am

jamest wrote:
SafeAsMilk wrote:
jamest wrote:No, it's not childish. I respect that there are different forums for different kinds of discussion, especially so when it comes to the social forum. Notwithstanding the fact that I've been in trouble before [in the early days] for talking [my] bollocks outside of the philosophy forum. Indeed, my decision to wait a few days to see if one of the mods moved the discussion was the rational/mature thing to do. Given that there's been no response to that and given that people are starting to take the piss, I will henceforth talk freely in this thread. If some fugger moans at me for doing so, please be aware that there are icicles on the current badger I have within my freezer!

I think it's safe to say that nobody (official or otherwise) cares if you start a discussion thread in somewhere other than philosophy. I'm willing to be the times you were pinged were when you took someone else's thread, and made it about your philosophy. So, uh, keep your badgers I guess?

I respect you for your intelligence. I had hoped that you were also sincere. I'm sorely disappointed to find otherwise.

Not sure why you think I'm being insincere, what I said was pretty straightforward and I meant every word of it.

jamest wrote:
Thommo wrote:Why do you have to be so personal and so childish?

As a materialist/physicalist, you should find no objection to me being personal. That you do, undermines your whole fucking shebang. There's no 'personal' in machine/robot.

But we're not machines/robots, so...

The bottom-line is that I don't retain your retarded mindset. The fact that I treat you as an individual is a reflection of my beliefs. That is, I have an excuse for my emotions and humour, nay politics. You've got fuck all but Darwin on your side. And he's an ugly cunt too.

Let's face it, you'll get lots of thumbs-ups here, but only from thumbs made in your mould. In centuries to come, your thumbs will all be viewed in the same vein as those thumbs possessed by all sorts of people from the past, including religious people.

The atheist inquisition is [in some sense] no less grotesque than the Xian inquisitions history speaks of. It's all about myopia. If you think for a second that you're less myopic than anyone you could mention from history, then you're deluded. More forgiving perhaps, but no less myopic.

I'm sure flat Earthers see everyone else this way too. Fortunately, I've got a way to have pretty high confidence that my view is more accurate than yours or flat Earthers: it's called evidence. You keep hoping that future generations will share your views, all the available evidence says that's a pipe dream, though.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#73  Postby Thommo » Feb 06, 2018 2:58 am

jamest wrote:The fact that I treat you as an individual is a reflection of my beliefs.


:rofl:

And you called SAM insincere. Everyone treats everyone as individuals. This isn't a fucking achievement!

:rofl:
jamest wrote:
Let's face it, you'll get lots of thumbs-ups here, but only from thumbs made in your mould. In centuries to come, your thumbs will all be viewed in the same vein as those thumbs possessed by all sorts of people from the past, including religious people.


Jealous much?

:lol:
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#74  Postby SafeAsMilk » Feb 06, 2018 3:00 am

Thommo wrote:
jamest wrote:
Thommo wrote:Why do you have to be so personal and so childish?

As a materialist/physicalist, you should find no objection to me being personal.


Here we go again. :roll:

Don't tell me what I think. You clearly don't know.

To state the obvious there's absolutely nothing in physicalism that says people don't have emotions, values and social inclinations. You cannot possibly misunderstand what physicalism says this badly, can you?

ETA: Just to be clear, physicalism says that everything is (underpinned by the) physical, in a clear statement that would be wherever any value differs, there must be an accompanying physical difference.

Quiet, cyborg.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#75  Postby Thommo » Feb 06, 2018 4:29 am

I prefer to think of myself as an android. Maybe of lt. commander rank.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#76  Postby Spinozasgalt » Feb 06, 2018 4:32 am

jamest wrote:No, it's not childish. I respect that there are different forums for different kinds of discussion, especially so when it comes to the social forum. Notwithstanding the fact that I've been in trouble before [in the early days] for talking [my] bollocks outside of the philosophy forum. Indeed, my decision to wait a few days to see if one of the mods moved the discussion was the rational/mature thing to do. Given that there's been no response to that and given that people are starting to take the piss, I will henceforth talk freely in this thread. If some fugger moans at me for doing so, please be aware that there are icicles on the current badger I have within my freezer!

You did message one of them or report the topic to have it moved, yeah?
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#77  Postby BlackBart » Feb 06, 2018 6:36 am

SafeAsMilk wrote:
Thommo wrote:
jamest wrote:
Thommo wrote:Why do you have to be so personal and so childish?

As a materialist/physicalist, you should find no objection to me being personal.


Here we go again. :roll:

Don't tell me what I think. You clearly don't know.

To state the obvious there's absolutely nothing in physicalism that says people don't have emotions, values and social inclinations. You cannot possibly misunderstand what physicalism says this badly, can you?

ETA: Just to be clear, physicalism says that everything is (underpinned by the) physical, in a clear statement that would be wherever any value differs, there must be an accompanying physical difference.

Quiet, cyborg.


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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#78  Postby Sendraks » Feb 06, 2018 11:15 am

jamest wrote:
As a materialist/physicalist, you should find no objection to me being personal. That you do, undermines your whole fucking shebang. There's no 'personal' in machine/robot.

The bottom-line is that I don't retain your retarded mindset. The fact that I treat you as an individual is a reflection of my beliefs. That is, I have an excuse for my emotions and humour, nay politics. You've got fuck all but Darwin on your side. And he's an ugly cunt too.

Let's face it, you'll get lots of thumbs-ups here, but only from thumbs made in your mould. In centuries to come, your thumbs will all be viewed in the same vein as those thumbs possessed by all sorts of people from the past, including religious people.

The atheist inquisition is [in some sense] no less grotesque than the Xian inquisitions history speaks of. It's all about myopia. If you think for a second that you're less myopic than anyone you could mention from history, then you're deluded. More forgiving perhaps, but no less myopic.


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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#79  Postby zulumoose » Feb 06, 2018 12:19 pm

if there's a scientific theory, it must apply to everything in the sense that everything will have a predictable outcome (a formula accounting for it all). However, one [in principle] cannot have a singular formula predicting subjective/unpredictable preferences for scenery.


The short answer is that humanity has been successful through spreading out and seeking diversity, otherwise competition for control of the most desirable type of climate/scenery/environment would destroy us. The only way to avoid destructive competition is to spread out, and the most effective way of spreading out is to have an almost random voluntary desire for something different and what you might call an adventurous spirit. I imagine if a good percentage of us didn't have that human population on earth would be confined to a particular climate, in a rather narrow sub-tropical belt.
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Re: Why do we love scenery?

#80  Postby LucidFlight » Feb 06, 2018 12:49 pm

Thommo wrote:
jamest wrote:The fact that I treat you as an individual is a reflection of my beliefs.


:rofl:

And you called SAM insincere. Everyone treats everyone as individuals. This isn't a fucking achievement!

I dunno, Thommo. That takes quite a bit of philosophical reasoning to think that there is some other individual beyond the observed orchestration of words on a screen in a non-existent physical world. How do we know you're not just some fancily-programmed AI, akin to a Nazi NPC or some such in Call of Duty?
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