The Philosophy of Reasonableness
here are basic philosophical tenants developed in nearly every individual who has sufficient lifespan to obtain an "adult" sense of judgement. These constitute the the consensus of what one ought to do in general situations. These tenants form the foundation of all religions and are the basic secular philosophy of those religions.
For want of a better term, I call this the Philosophy of Reasonableness.
It is somewhat more specific than Aristotle's idea of moderation in all things ... and ... it breaks down under situations of danger and high stress. The reason that it breaks down can be attributed to the fight or flight decision which must be made in such situations. Obviously, in these circumstances there will be a wide variance of opinion (a spectrum of possibilities with fight or flight at the extremes).
Such is our case at the moment (the World Trade Center destruction). This event is not covered by the philosophy of reasonableness which is constructed within, and is meant to maintain, a state of tranquility. Here men find fundamental agreement and those agreements are written down in religions and independent philosophies.
Here are some of the universal entries to
There are many more entries to add (all obvious to the experienced human) but ... you get the picture. We know these are the right things to do, in general, in order to keep the peace.
The Philosophy of Reasonableness:
- Don't attack your neighbor and steal his stuff
- Don't screw your neighbors wife
- Don't spread rumors about others
- Treat animals kindly
- Don't draw attention to yourself (brag, etc.)
- Help other people when they are in need
- Forgive those who have wronged you (Don't eat your liver)
- And here's one I would add from the 21st century
Take a bath or shower at least twice a week
The above is "secular" philosophy. It forms the base of every religion thereby lending it a foundational legitimacy even in the minds of very primitive peoples. Onto this base are grafted the "ornaments" of religion. Ornaments consist of the nonsensical aspects of religion. The orders to "bow toward Mecca", "go to confession" ... accept Jesus, Mohammed, Joseph Smith, or Grace Slick as your savior ... wear a hat in church if you are a woman, wear a beard if a man, get baptized in water ... don't eat meat on Friday, don't eat pigs ... etc. etc. etc.
We are now confronted with the necessity of going beyond the philosophy of reasonableness. We cannot appeal to any religion for guidance. It has none to offer. The present menu is not on their dinner table. When forced to deal with extremes all religions abandon their fundamental base (the above secular philosophy) and turn into wild animals. They kill anything and anyone in sight. This is true of Christians, Muslims, Hindus ... you name it ... none are different.
Under the current pressure of western civilization, the Islamic religion has been given a new "interpretation" in order that it might deal with the disintegration of Islam. The majority of Islamic people now favor the "death struggle" or jihad ... the holy war against the infidel, i.e. those who are members of "violent terror organizations" like the PTA, ASPCA, etc. They have determined in their infinite wisdom (conferred by Allah) that you and your children are their mortal enemies and must be eradicated from existence.
What say you? Shall we fight?
Let's just bend over and take it up the poop chute.
See? You get into the same predicament. There is no alternative. If terrorism is not eradicated, the situation will escalate into nuclear war at some point. I personally doubt that this can be achieved so I anticipate (with horror) that nuclear war will occur sometime in the next few decades. We'll lose a few cities and the camel jockies will get the worst of it by far. Too bad for them. I think they would have been an excellent addition to the Earth's culture were it not for them taking their ridiculous religion too seriously.