As I see it, Americans are still way below the level they must attain in order to deserve to be reckoned through and through. By my criterion, the civilised humanity must get rid of all cultures and customs that do not fit in with the PRINCIPLE of healthy and meaningful living. But Americans, notwithstanding the fact that theirs happen to be the most advanced civilisation of the world, are still lamentably lacking in the backbone they need be possessed of in order to stand for this PRINCIPLE.
Being civilized does not mean living according to what you personally find to be healthy, and it does not mean that lives must be your personal definition of "meaningful". If others disagree with you on what puts meaning into their lives it does not mean they are uncivilized.
Perhaps the one attribute of true civilization is recognition and acceptance that people are different, that there is not one definition of a "proper" way to live. We all want different things, we all find meaning and pleasure in different things, and none of those things are innately superior to any other.
Thanks for your response. Your comment surely deserves to be given serious thought to, as I see it.
' Being civilized does not mean living according to what you personally find to be healthy, and it does not mean that lives must be your personal definition of "meaningful". '
It seems implicit in your comment that you're not opposed to my criterion for being reckoned civilised through and through, but you find my view of healthy and meaningful living unacceptable. Thus, it also suggests that you've got a clear concept of my view of healthy and meaningful living. Would you let me know why you cannot see eye to eye with me on what is truly healthy and meaningful living, and what I ' personally find to be healthy [ and meaningful ', but you don't ? If my ' personal definition ' of healthy and meaningful life is not wrong, then ' [b]eing civilized ' ought to mean ' living according to what [ I ] personally find to be healthy [ and meaningful ', oughtn't it ? Of course you don't think my view of healthy and meaningful living is outright unacceptable, do you ?
' If others disagree with you on what puts meaning into their lives it does not mean they are uncivilized. '
If my position on ' what puts meaning into their lives ' is right, they can't deserve to be recognised as civilised if their mode of living happens to be in conflict with it, can they ?
' Perhaps the one attribute of true civilization is recognition and acceptance that people are different, that there is not one definition of a "proper" way to live. '
Of course you don't want to suggest, because ' there is not one definition of a "proper" way to live ', that whatever way you indulge in in order to stay alive is OK, do you ? Of course you don't want to suggest that the way people in the Dark Ages, i.e. people who had no idea of democracy, adult suffrage, universal education, feminine freedom, human rights, etc, and who didn't learn to respect liberty, fraternity, and egalitarianism, used to live isn't unbecoming to the humanity in this space age, do you ? Of course you don't mean that the way thieves, robbers, smugglers, murderers, traffickers in dames and drugs, rapists, drug addicts, alcoholics, et cetera, et cetera are used to living is OK, do you ? Of course you don't want to say that those that can see nothing wrong with the fact that a B-2 Spirit stealth bomber costs $ 2.4 billion and love to turn a blind eye to the meagre compensation the near relations of a policeman or a warplane pilot killed in a shootout with a gang of criminals or terrorists are paid are right and wholly civilised, do you ? Of course you don't want me to look on statesmen, scientists, economists, technologists, environmentalists, and other geniuses, i.e. great people whose work has provided humanity with immense power and led to the immense progress and development of human civilisation worldwide, who can see nothing wrong with the fact that the social division into the rich, the super-rich at one pole and swarms of the poor and the penniless at the other doesn't owe its origin to the fact that humans aren't equal qualitatively and don't feel ashamed that the rich 1 % and the super-rich 80 lead a life of fabulous luxury before their silly eyes although these people have in reality made little or no contribution to the empowerment of humanity and the progress and development of human civilisation as civilised wholly, do you ?
Your ignorance of the ' " proper " way to live ' doesn't make your wrong way of living right. It only points, I'm afraid to say, to the deficiency in your intellectual maturity and shows that you still have a long way to go before attaining the level of enlightenment you must attain in order to deserve to be reckoned wholly civilised.
' We all want different things, we all find meaning and pleasure in different things, and none of those things are innately superior to any other. '
My dear sir, claiming whatever you ' all find meaning and pleasure in ' are OK adds up to claiming there's no such a thing as what deserves to be viewed as wrong. Do you really hold such a view ? I'm afraid, this is outright absurd. The nonexistence of the wrong implies the nonexistence of the right just as no non-rainy days means no rainy days, and as no non-red roses means no red roses too.
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