• OK, it's on.
  • Please note that many, many Email Addresses used for spam, are not accepted at registration. Select a respectable Free email.
  • Done now. Domine miserere nobis.

What moral weight is there when inspired by another's suffering?

onesteptwostep

logos, life, love, longsuffering
Local time
Today, 12:30
Joined
Dec 7, 2014
Messages
3,295
I see this on facebook too many times, "figure X/person X" suffers, another person is inspired and comments.

"If this person is going through this thing and if it's nothing to compared to what I have, I shouldn't be complaining myself."

To be honest there's a tinge of irritation and annoyance when reading something like this, so I want to direct and frame my sentiments into something more analytical.

I could use this person as a figurehead, Nick Vujicic. This person visited my high school several years ago (8? 7?) and gave a hour long motivational speech about overcoming life challenges. His visit vexed me so much because by what license does he think he has the ability to lecture other people about life? Does his limblessness provide him with the emotional and proverbial ammo to conduct his sentimental manipulation? In reality no one is really the same, in background, wealth, semantic capacity and mental fortitude, and yes, and even in the amount of limbs we are apparently bestowed. Everyone's lives are drastically different, from birth to adolescence, from adolescence to death. It makes no sense for people to be inspired by suffering, as if their past or current torments are supposed to be cheap stepping stones for your medicinal daily dose of sentimental high.

Weakness shines best when it speaks for itself, not when paraded as suffering. And for this reason I am never moved when there is suffering, because all one can earn from it is anguish. To have overcome it is just a passing of time, time eternal, nonpartial and nonjudgemental, projecting prejudice to no one and to all the same alike.

Suffering is no inspiration and in fact, I would suggest that using suffering to inspire, or to be inspired by suffering is morally adverse. There's a saying that a priest who had locked himself up in a coffin for a hundred days to fast wept aloud because he had learned of another priest who had done the same for five hundred. The act of "fasting", or the events which led to suffering should not be laughed at. But the conclusions derived from them most definitely should.

"Shit happens."
 
Local time
Today, 04:30
Joined
Feb 8, 2015
Messages
1,529
Location
the Purgatory
I could use this person as a figurehead, Nick Vujicic. This person visited my high school several years ago (8? 7?) and gave a hour long motivational speech about overcoming life challenges. His visit vexed me so much because by what license does he think he has the ability to lecture other people about life?
im with you on this one. this is why i cant stand ted talks or self help books.
however, i dont understand how this is related to the main point (i presume) you're making?
all im reading from your thread is "me me me", i dont understand why you're belittling sensitivity to the pain of others

first, if everyone's caught up in their granular problems and ego bubbles then there would be no giving, only taking. it's good to be constantly reminded of your nothingness. second, not everyone needs to suffer directly in order to derive meaning, expand their world view and realize the narrowness of their 'comfort zone', sensitivity to the plight of others can produce the same. and that's why suffering is "inspirational", because in most cases it motivates change. for example i doubt anyone who's read kolyma tales of people who have been through hell(to the point where something like a can of condensed milk or a child's watercolor paintings became a thing of miraculous and transcendent magnitude) has not paused to reflect on their own life, priorities and grievings

also it seems to me like you're just talking about concepts like in a vacuum...what even is "weakness for itself"?
 

onesteptwostep

logos, life, love, longsuffering
Local time
Today, 12:30
Joined
Dec 7, 2014
Messages
3,295
@sin

I wouldn't expect you to know Christian theology, but the question presented in the OP is within Christus Victor, so no, Christians wouldn't necessarily disagree.
 

Sinny91

Banned
Local time
Today, 04:30
Joined
May 16, 2015
Messages
6,299
Location
Birmingham, UK
@sin

I wouldn't expect you to know Christian theology
Why not? I was raised by Roman Catholics and live in an Anglican country, in the Christian west, lol.

My interpretation may be wrong, but it is shared by many.

so no, Christians wouldn't necessarily disagree.
Meh. I was just highlighting the fact that 'Jesus died for our sins' and that his 'suffering' has been a 'inspiration' to all Christians, from my pov...That's the Christianity I grew up with.. That's what is taught of mainstream Christianity and people are taught not to question it... of course, faith defies logic in it's usual sense.. I personally don't believe that Jesus died for our sins, I think he died because of our sins.. (not mine in particular, but Judas and that bunch) .. I do find his suffering to be an inspiration. If he existed, he showed conviction and sought justice... and it was his suffering which led to his eventual martyrdom.

I don't know what you mean when you say 'moral weight' ... But I would say that another persons suffering can be inspirational in many ways.

E.g, Rosa Parks, Nelson Mandela, the Holocaust, Bobby Sands etc etc.

Bearing witness to the suffering of others should (depending on your own belief system) cause us to inwardly reflect on our selves, our own intentions and our own behavior.

Presumably, from their we further discern our 'moral' behaviors from our immoral behaviors, and presumably better or 'correct' ourselves.
 

Intolerable

Banned
Local time
Yesterday, 23:30
Joined
Nov 13, 2015
Messages
1,139
It's just a matter of perspective.

All too often we're only exposed to our own problems and so we start wrong-headed thinking like life is much harder ( or better ) for us than it is for other people.

I think organizations pay these people to come in to give staff and students a perspective they don't have. That typically moves some in the crowd to new emotions based on new perspective.
 

higs

Omg wow imo
Local time
Today, 04:30
Joined
Apr 3, 2012
Messages
2,061
Location
Armchair
All the worlds Christians would disagree with you there.
Yeah and Shakespeare and Dostoievsky and most operas and Kurt Cobain and and on and on
 

Alias

empirical miracle
Local time
Yesterday, 23:30
Joined
Feb 22, 2015
Messages
692
Location
My current location is classified.
I think we could be taking about different types of inspiration. From what I think, onesteptwostep means the attitude that "Other people have it worse than you, so lighten up." We might be interpreting inspiration as creative inspiration, like art inspired by individual suffering or the suffering of mankind. (Just my interpretation, I could be wrong about everyone's definition of inspiration.)

I think we can use suffering as inspiration to get out there and make the world a better place, instead of using the disadvantaged to lift ourselves up.
 

Tommythegreat

Redshirt
Local time
Today, 03:30
Joined
Apr 28, 2016
Messages
7
i agree. it is common in speech given by people with disability or unfortunate event: perosn who give a speech dont really talk to the audience, most of the time i feel like thay have only been talking to himself. Rather than inspiring other, it is just a talk to encourage themselves to continue his or her difficult life.
whether a person get 'inspired' is depend on the person himself. if a person is impressionable, he may feel positive in life after the speech. that of course doesnt really happen to INTPs. i dislike those talk to use a person suffering for inspiration, but i know the speakers are usually with good intention.

我從使用 Tapatalk 的 GT-N7105 發送
 

QuickTwist

Spiritual "Woo"
Local time
Yesterday, 22:30
Joined
Jan 24, 2013
Messages
7,182
Location
...
OK, so a few things.

  • There are varying degrees of human suffering. This should be pretty common sense to most people. The fact that someone can value an experience as enjoyable or painful is evidence of this. Because there are people who have had it worse off than you all that should really be telling you is that life's not fair. The problem is that many people associate healthy empathy with pity and it gets twisted into them not wanting to conclude "because I have not been through hell, I am a better person."
  • When people are moved by emotion from someone's suffering it sets off a trigger for survival instincts that things are not right. This causes people to want to be proactive in either thought or action (depending on if that person naturally gravitates toward thought or action ie. Introvert or Extrovert). It is the human condition (in most cases) to feel "lucky" it didn't happen to you. The proactive part is that people don't want that bad thing happening to them so their brain gets tricked into thinking if they change they will have a better chance of that not happening to them.
  • Human beings are social by nature and as such are usually compassionate, or at the very least, sensitive (even in the case that they are sadistic) when they see the ill fate of another human. The fact that people want to sum up human suffering as "inspirational" is because there are two ways to take it. 1) become a heartless monster who has no compassion or 2) realize you have empathy for the ill fate of another. The reason most people choose option 2 is because they don't want to have to deal with ill emotions of their own by choosing option 1 that they would get from cutting themselves off from society. Initially people realize that causing unwarranted harm to another person is going to cause you to feel guilty, and guilt is not a pleasant emotion to have so people avoid it. People would rather be proactive in avoiding pain than seeing it as an ok thing.
 
Top Bottom