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Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:45 AM

Why are we so violent?

I just keep asking myself this. Why are humans so violent. Is it just our nature? Is it our nurture?

I am reading a book on the Celtic religions. in Great Britain. It was obvious cl ear back in the Neolithic settlements that there was a lot of warfare going on. So this goes back a long, long way.

What is there about us that we kill each other, torture each other and actually get off on it. We do the same to all other living things too.

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Arrow 14 replies Author Time Post
Reply Why are we so violent? (Original post)
leftyladyfrommo Jan 2013 OP
Puzzledtraveller Jan 2013 #1
JaneyVee Jan 2013 #2
el_bryanto Jan 2013 #3
KurtNYC Jan 2013 #4
leftstreet Jan 2013 #5
OneGrassRoot Jan 2013 #6
leftyladyfrommo Jan 2013 #7
Romulox Jan 2013 #8
Rider3 Jan 2013 #9
reteachinwi Jan 2013 #10
leftyladyfrommo Jan 2013 #12
slackmaster Jan 2013 #11
Lizzie Poppet Jan 2013 #13
Shankapotomus Jan 2013 #14

Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:48 AM

1. It's in our nature

How else are we here, as homo sapiens-sapiens?

http://www.ruf.rice.edu/~kemmer/Evol/violence.html

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:49 AM

2. The HUGE majority of people are non-violent. BUT I believe violence is a product of environment

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:50 AM

3. For most of our existance we have lived with limited means of survival

This creates a situation of murderous conflict - I'm going to survive even if it means killing you.

Alternatively, man is a fallen creature; through our separation from God, we have become venal, weak, and violent.

Alternatively, capitalist systems have engendered and preserved a zero-sum mentality, which forces us to compete with each other brutally.

Alternatively, the Devil made us do it.

Alternatively, we are tiny sparks of consciousness alone in a sea of nothingness and since nothing matters why not slaughter each other while we wait for inevitable oblivion. Everything is permitted.

Alternatively, Violent movies and video games made us do it.

Other alternatives are available.

Bryant

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:50 AM

4. Not sure that we are more violent as a species than say cats or killer whales

but we focus on it. There aren't nearly as many monuments and statues for those who advanced civilization as there are for those who fought battles, conquered and dominated.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/30/domestic-cats-kill-billions-mice-birds-annually-study_n_2575833.html

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:51 AM

5. Violent crime in the US is at its lowest in decades n/t

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:51 AM

6. FEAR n/t

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:52 AM

7. I feel like I am non violent.

But I also feel like I am just completely surrounded by violence.

It's not just in the cities. It's also a huge problem in rural areas.

I think I have paid a pretty big price for being non violent. Working in our society is difficult if you are not competitive. I look at the competition and the stuff that goes on in some business and I am just appalled. Being vicious is just part of the game. It's expected and rewarded.

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:52 AM

8. Our gov't is financially addicted to war, and we are all raised to enable it. That's the fact. nt

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 11:36 AM

9. Good question

I believe that we've become complacent about others. The mindset these days seems to be, "I have mine. Screw anyone else." They lack any type of empathy. So sad.

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 11:48 AM

10. Nature

 

New research touts findings that conservatives have bigger amygdalas while liberals have bigger cingulate cortices. The bigger amygdala means conservatives could be driven by fear while the bigger cingulate cortex means liberals have more decision-making power. Hmmm. Is it possible that our politics are fixed at birth?


http://keenetrial.com/blog/2011/01/24/excuse-me-potential-juror-but-just-how-big-is-your-amygdala/

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Response to reteachinwi (Reply #10)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 12:17 PM

12. Does this mean I am a cradle democrat?

That is an interesting idea.

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 11:50 AM

11. Because apes.

 

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 12:21 PM

13. Evolution.

The combination of great big brains, opposing thumbs, and finding a sweet spot in the "fight or flight" balance landed us at the top of the food chain. Unfortunately, we've evolved our social constructs a lot faster than our innate psychology...and the aggression that served us so well is showing us its dark side in spades these days.

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Response to leftyladyfrommo (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 12:50 PM

14. Since violence is the product of

an unhealthy psychology, as irrelevant as Freud has become to explaining normal human psychology, I think a lot of his work can be applied to psychologies that resort to violence. Basically, whatever it is we value and feel we need, whether a legitimate need or not, if our striving fails to satisfy a need, the energy that would normally be applied and pacified in obtaining that value, can turn chaotic and get transferred to unhealthy and abnormal activities.

So if you kind of apply Freud's theories on energy transfer to an unhealthy psychology and combine it with Maslow's hierarchy of needs, basically, repeated failures to satisfy a need, whether a physical need like hunger or the artificial needs of the ego, can push a less mentally adaptive psychology to channel their energy toward an abnormal and violent pursuit of "rewards" in unhealthy activities involving desperation, blame and/or revenge.

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