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Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:41 AM

A simple poll - cynicism....

Just curious. And let's discuss!

I thought of this poll while working out this morning....as my wife and I walk our dogs each day, we find that we are both extremely cynical these days - about pretty much anything on TV (esp. ads), politics - you name it.....We try to ensure it doesn't make us bitter or isolated, so try to keep each other in check!
13 votes, 0 passes | Time left: Unlimited
I think it is important these days to be cynical, and I am quite cynical
9 (69%)
I think it is important, but I tend not to be cynical
0 (0%)
I think it does more harm than good, but I admit to being quite cynical
4 (31%)
I think it does more harm than good, and I tend to not be cynical
0 (0%)
other
0 (0%)
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Disclaimer: This is an Internet poll

20 replies, 1129 views

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Reply A simple poll - cynicism.... (Original post)
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 OP
Scuba Feb 2013 #1
OriginalGeek Feb 2013 #2
Tierra_y_Libertad Feb 2013 #3
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 #4
Tierra_y_Libertad Feb 2013 #7
OceanEcosystem Feb 2013 #5
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 #8
OceanEcosystem Feb 2013 #9
Kelvin Mace Feb 2013 #11
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 #12
OceanEcosystem Feb 2013 #16
Solly Mack Feb 2013 #6
Kelvin Mace Feb 2013 #10
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 #14
el_bryanto Feb 2013 #13
riqster Feb 2013 #15
Javaman Feb 2013 #17
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 #18
stuntcat Feb 2013 #19
EastKYLiberal Feb 2013 #20

Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:46 AM

1. I have trouble being as cynical as our situation deserves.

As Lily Tomlin said, I just can't keep up.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:46 AM

2. Not sure how cynical I am

My wife says I'm very but I think I am only very cynical when the subject is religion and/or Republican motives. I'm probably not cynical enough when dealing with democrat/liberal motives (in a grander scheme of things way. Locally I generally consider liberals I know to be sincere.)


I certainly don't think it hurts to be cynical if one can also be gracious and accepting about it if one is shown to be wrong. I'm used to being wrong so it doesn't bother me much.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:48 AM

3. Jesus as a Jewish Cynic

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cynicism_%28philosophy%29

Jesus as a Jewish Cynic

Some historians have noted the similarities between the life and teachings of Jesus and those of the Cynics. Some scholars have argued that the Q document, a hypothetical common source for the gospels of Matthew and Luke, has strong similarities with the teachings of the Cynics. Scholars on the quest for the historical Jesus, such as Burton L. Mack and John Dominic Crossan of the Jesus Seminar, have argued that 1st century CE Galilee was a world in which Hellenistic ideas collided with Jewish thought and traditions. The city of Gadara, only a day's walk from Nazareth, was particularly notable as a centre of Cynic philosophy, and Mack has described Jesus as a "rather normal Cynic-type figure." For Crossan, Jesus was more like a Cynic sage from an Hellenistic Jewish tradition than either a Christ who would die as a substitute for sinners or a Messiah who wanted to establish an independent Jewish state of Israel. Other scholars doubt that Jesus was deeply influenced by the Cynics, and see the Jewish prophetic tradition as of much greater importance.
Cynic influences on early Christianity

Many of the ascetic practices of Cynicism may have been adopted by early Christians, and Christians often employed the same rhetorical methods as the Cynics. Some Cynics were actually martyred for speaking out against the authorities. One Cynic, Peregrinus Proteus, lived for a time as a Christian before converting to Cynicism, whereas in the 4th century, Maximus of Alexandria, although a Christian, was also called a Cynic because of his ascetic lifestyle. Christian writers would often praise Cynic poverty, although they scorned Cynic shamelessness: Augustine stating that they had, "in violation of the modest instincts of men, boastfully proclaimed their unclean and shameless opinion, worthy indeed of dogs." The ascetic orders of Christianity also had direct connection with the Cynics, as can be seen in the wandering mendicant monks of the early church who in outward appearance, and in many of their practices were little different from the Cynics of an earlier age.

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #3)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:48 AM

4. fascinating. thanks for posting that!

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:50 AM

7. If you read the whole article you can see many parallels.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:48 AM

5. I think cynicism is a poisonous sentiment to have.

 

It does terrible things to people and to society. It's different from skepticism, which is rooted in honest doubt and can be a healthy sentiment to have. Cynicism, on the other hand, is bitter.


I wish for a far less cynical society.

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Response to OceanEcosystem (Reply #5)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:50 AM

8. very interesting comment and leads to the source of the cynicism that many of us experience.

So, when does skepticism evolve into cynicism? Or perhaps it is more of a semantic issue, and what we think of as cynicism is just extreme skepticism. I think I have a good dose of both, to tell the truth.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Reply #8)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:53 AM

9. I think skepticism turns into cynicism when one begins to ascribe malicious motives.

 

Skepticism: "I am not convinced by this politician's argument that Proposal A would benefit the economy."

Cynicism: "The reason this politician is arguing for Proposal A is because he wants to use it to secretly line his pockets with millions of dollars and steal from taxpayers."

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Response to OceanEcosystem (Reply #9)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:55 AM

11. Good point!

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Response to OceanEcosystem (Reply #9)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:56 AM

12. Good example - and as I said, I have many examples of experiencing both sentiments.

But I think the cynicism is fact-based on data of watching politicians through the years. So perhaps a relationship between age and cynicism vs skepticism?

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 12:33 PM

16. That's true. I heartily agree.

 

When you've seen something happen repeatedly time and time again, it's hard not to expect it to happen the same way the next time around, even if you wish it wouldn't.


It's psychological classical conditioning.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:49 AM

6. I can be very cynical.

Depends.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:54 AM

10. I would draw a distinction

between cynicism and skepticism.

It is ALWAYS a good idea to be skeptical, which some view as a being cynical.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:57 AM

14. Sounds like a good follow up poll, but this is leading to the type of discussion I hoped for.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:56 AM

13. It depends on what you mean by cynicism

Looked at one way - Cynicism is just an excuse to give up and focus on, in my case, playing World of Warcraft. I mean if nothings going to happen, why try?

Looking at it another way, being pollyanna these days is not likely to be a strategy that produces good results.

Where cynicism is really bad - terrible, even - is when you use it instead of evidence. Regardless of how bad you might think someone is, you should always demand credible evidence before believing outlandish accusations.

Bryant

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 12:06 PM

15. I have no idea if it's important, but I am extremely cynical

Related mindsets can probably serve one as well as cynicism: skepticism, logic, Occam's Razor, and so on. Any sort of critical thinking serves us better than the reflexive induction and blind acceptanc that most people seem to utilize.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 12:49 PM

17. Like a poll will have any effect...

Sorry couldn't resist.

Cheers!

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Response to Javaman (Reply #17)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 12:52 PM

18. good one!

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 02:00 PM

19. The next few decades will be a nightmare, it's a fact.

Being realistic means being very cynical. People let me down more every single day, the more contact I have with them the worse it is, most are just selfish earth-raping clowns. The worst ones think they're the greatest.
I'm over the edge of it, just trying to laugh through the rest of my life. The worse things are, the harder I'll try to keep laughing. Next time my inlaws tell me I should DIE because I won't give my baby the rest of this century, I'll laugh in their faces instead of cry like I did last time.
The one thing I'm gladdest for in life is my years being half over.

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 02:02 PM

20. I am cynical of bullshit, but bullshit is pretty obvious if you're paying attention. nt

 

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