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Why should anyone else matter to me?

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MattMVS7

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Since we are only in our own minds and not in the minds of others, then this means that we can only experience our own pleasure and suffering in life. We cannot experience the pleasure and suffering of others. Therefore, why should anyone else from our own perspectives matter and why should the pleasure and suffering of others matter to us if we can only experience our own pleasure and suffering? These other people are not a part of our conscious, they can't experience our misery or joy and know what it feels like, and they can't experience our perceptions and thinking. They can only relate to us at best through their own personal thinking, perceptions, joy, and misery. But that isn't anything at all because even if they did relate to us and helped us out, they are still not a part of our conscious and can't experience our own personal pleasure and suffering and can't know what our own personal pleasure and suffering feels like. They do not have telepathic powers in which they can literally experience our own perceptions, pleasure, and suffering. Therefore, other people from our perspectives are nothing more than the functioning of atoms and particles. If I were to take your brain and set it on the table and look at it through some form of technology, then all it would be from my own perspective would be these neurons, atoms, and particles zipping around and nothing more. Therefore, other people from our own perspectives are nothing more than the functioning of atoms and particles and these people should not matter to us since we are not them and we shouldn't matter from their perspectives either since they are not us since we can only experience ourselves and our own lives. Therefore, it is only ourselves and our own lives that matter.

As for people who would be offended by reading what I just said here, then the reason why you are offended is because you do not know what it is like to be in my mind and to have my perceptions, thinking, and attitude. Therefore, this is yet another reason why these people should not matter to me either and further validates my claim here that others do not matter from our own perspectives.
 
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pepecat

pepecat

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In answer to your question 'why should anyone else matter to me' (which seems rather unconnected to the whole pleasure/suffering debate, IMO), I guess the answer is 'They shouldn't'.

On a purely logical, cold, analytic view - if you want to take that- I guess you could say they shouldn't. If you want to live alone, and lonely, and without human interaction, or without meaning in your life, or human experiences, then you're right, no one should matter to you.
And you can tell yourself that no one else matters, and you matter to no one, but what good does that do?
Makes for a very lonely, sad life, I think.

Humans are designed (hard wired) for interaction. We are social animals. We live in groups and interact and this interactions create meaning, which in turns means people matter to each other. Either because of their value to the group in terms of providing food or shelter or warmth or protection, or more experiential things like comfort and support.
Animals are the same- look at troops of monkeys or herds of elephants or groups of lions or tigers. Or meerkats. Or penguins. It's a survival thing.
And while we as humans can survive physically on our own -we can provide our own food/warmth/shelter etc, when it comes to other things, like emotional interaction and support, we do very badly on our own, most of the time. It kills your soul.

It's all very well to sit there doing the 'we are no more than atoms banging together' and 'since we are no more than atoms functioning' or 'since no one else can fully understand our thoughts' and analyse stuff on a purely logical level, but the point seems to me to be that we ARE more than atoms banging together. We're people, with insight and sentience and experience and connection, and those things mean people DO matter to each other, even if you sit there and convince yourself that they don't.

You're right in saying that no one can fully understand you and your thoughts- of course they can't, they're not you- but empathy and experience and understanding means that some people can get damn close, and that's where connections happen and people start mattering to each other.

How does convincing yourself that people don't matter to each other suit you? Does that make you feel lonely, or sad? Or angry?
 
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Quickduck

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we see another person suffering, if we hear or read their words we can feel empathy for them; we can share in some part of their suffering, just as we can share in their happiness. If you were unable to see, hear or touch another person, if you lived alone in a void, only then could you truly say you're solely in your own mind. You have influenced and been influenced by every mind you've come into contact with.
I'm not offended, just bemused. :)
 
Toasted Crumpet

Toasted Crumpet

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People don't have to matter to you, but if you behave in a way that offends them you might find yourself disliked or ostracised by them which ultimately has an impact on you, unless you are someone who genuinely is not bothered by whether others like them or not. Being ostracised and disliked is not much fun (I speak from experience).

I am not saying that this would happen to you personally on this forum, I mean in general as anyone goes about their daily life.

I used to make it easier for myself by pretending that even though the people around me disliked me and were condemning me, they had no idea who I was, the me inside my body, and were just reacting to the shell that was walking around, so it didn't matter. So I separated the "me" from the "her" that other people responded to.

Ultimately though I think it was easier to consider that my behaviour does have an effect on others and as far as possible not to do things that might upset them. Though this is open to interpretation of course as what bothers one person might not bother someone else.

My partner has this friend who decided a long time ago that we only get one life and she is going to enjoy it and doesn't care if her maximising pleasure minimises other peoples - not in a bad way like deliberately hurting people but it did make her quite selfish eg not sharing housework etc. She didn't care until she started losing friends which then impacted on her pleasure and enjoyment, for example she would cancel an arrangement with friends because a better offer came up which she felt would be more pleasurable - the first group of friends would not be happy with her and let her know it. It's a fine line.

No one can ever know what it is like to be another person but it is about putting ourselves in others' shoes and trying to imagine what it would be like if we were them. Though this is something I am not very good at myself.

Even in the animal kingdom a lot of species do try and show concern for other members of their tribe if only because it increases their own chance of survival. Even if you are someone who doesn't like people, you'd still need to be concerned about how to treat others or you would not get your basic needs met, eg you'd get evicted, or refused service in shops etc.

What I wonder with your posts though is if you are trying to alienate people because maybe on some level you don't feel good about yourself and don't want others to get too close to you? Sorry if I am completely missing the point.
 
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