It's not Stockholm syndrome, because the evil eventually is beaten, and depending on the degree of stupid, defeat comes sooner rather than later. The local benefit of bad behavior is always there, that's not surprising, it is a game theory Nash equilibrium. The surprise is that good behavior eventually succeeds anyway, even though all the local restoring forces oppose it, and it is aiming for a new minimum which seems impossibly far away. But still, it grows regularly through people's steady faith, and it takes over when there is sufficient freedom, and even when there isn't, and in hindsight it seems inevitable, although at the time it seems impossible.
Job is not good enough, because it has a more or less happy ending. To get the proper effect, Justine, or the 120 Days of Sodom, or any other work by Sade is more effective. In these, Sade puts you in an even bleaker situation where nothing at all decent seems to be a sensible choice, every ethical action, even just falling in love, or trying to help others, comes with unspeakable punishment. Sade is the best text for understanding religious faith, because he forces you to go to a point where no human being can actually follow and remain sane, and at this point, God becomes obvious.
I should add that Stockholm syndrome isn't a surprising thing either, humans get their political belief system largely from the surrounding power structure, without conscious deliberation. When a person is surrounded by leftists with guns, when they are pointing guns at you, you are powerless, so they start to sound a lot more sensible than when you are sitting at home and they are being made fun of by the government.
In the question details, I have mentioned an annecdotal story on why belief could be counter-productive since it could lead to acceptance of bad situations as tests from lord (just as we humans perform tests on guinea pigs)?
In Stockholm Syndrome, victims end up loving their captors even more due to certain small beneficial acts done by captors. Only in this case captors is an ideology and victims are strong believers.
God is just not what you think it is. God doesn't go around testing anything, it's an abstract ethical order, it informs your actions, and it feels like an unchanging rigid external agent which is extremely powerful.
God is not a thing that goes around making people miserable to see what would happen, nor is it a magic agent that can cure cancer. It's an ethical order you construct by self-consistency.
So if I construct it by self-consistency, then how can it simultaneously be an "abstract ethical order"? Very tautologous here, Ron. Gimme some room.
You construct it by self consistency, but there's a right answer, in that someone else constructing it independently will eventually converge with you. It's like saying "you compute pi digit by digit using the series", you construct pi, but someone else constructing it would have to agree. Also, you never construct the whole thing, just a little bit.
I asked the reverend once,
"What are we supposed to do in the face of so much meaninglessness?"
And he said to me,
"what else can we do but take what seems meaningless and try to make something meaningful from it."
Wow. God becomes obvious after reading Sade? Sweet holy jesus, I am a truly fucked tard. Ah yes, but back to my 2008 Cabernet. Ahhhh. Yes, that feels better. Fuck Sade and behold Dionysus! This god thing is just soooo silly.
Read Sade, cover to cover, "The Misfortunes of Virtue", "The 120 Days of Sodom", "Philosophy in the Bedroom", "Eugenie of Franval", and other short stories from around 1800. The later works are too long, so I haven't read them.
I described what happened to me here: What's it like to have a transcendent spiritual experience? I have never had any other writing, including the new testament, James Joyce, whatever, even if it is moving, cause this profound an effect.
Sade wrote secular religious texts, for the purpose of creating a religious experience in an atheist reader. I swear to you, an atheist reading Sade, and reading carefully, cover to cover, can realy understand what religion is all about, and without any alteration in the understanding of the material universe.
ok, this is probably the most confusing response i have seen from you! :) I need a lot of clarifications now.
What can one learn from Sade? He didn't even appreciate Golden rule and my understanding is that he said you can do whatever you want to please yourself. I think this is a self-defeating argument, with no clear logic to work with. What is the axiom here? What the hell is this Sade guy thinking? If I can be killed by someone who has the same motive of self-interest, how the hell can i further mine?
That's Sade's PURPORTED philosophy, it is the philosophy of his villains. This philosophy is what his villains argue forcefully, again and again, persuasively. It is designed to make sure you understand that evil is self-consistent (it is), that there is no rational argument you can make to an evil person in power, there's nothing you can say that is rational, and you really need to understand this philosophy, to be immersed in it, to see what ethics really are, because otherwise, you can be mislead into thinking it's something that comes from rational thought regarding actions.
Ethics CAN come from self-consistent rational thought regarding actions, this is self-consistent. But evil is equally self-consistent, it is wrong for meta-reasons regarding evolution and the future, for reasons that are pure God.
The Sade thing is important because it the philosophy is written for you to reject it. It is written to be over the top, to such an extent that you can't help but reject it, but Sade makes sure that you can't reject it logically, because he gives insanely long rational responses to all your logic, so you are forced to reject it be religious experience. It's a remarkable achievement, unequalled in literature.
Sade didn't follow this philosophy, or else he couldn't be a writer. He wrote his books to describe God without supernatural stories, or happy-ending tales. In that regard it is similar to noir, like "The Lady From Shanghai", where you have a situation which makes the ethical considerations clear, except nothing is clear to the characters in the story except various degrees of self interest.
I don't get it. It is clearly self-defeating as seen from Kantian viewpoint: If everybody is ruthless in pursuing their pleasure, everyone is killed and no humanity to work with. Yeah, the underlying assumption is human kind should survive and excel, at least to follow Sade's tenets! ;) Is Sade following some other assumption?
You are assuming everyone GETS to do the same things. Why? People are not in an equal position. Some people are slaves, some people are not. If you are a slave, you simply can't kill me. But I can kill you, however I like. It's fun, actually, to do so, if there's a certain diabolicalness to it. You see, I'm a noblemen in a position of power, nothing can harm me. Certainly not the powerless subjects I use for my amusement and pleasure.
Humankind is not an issue, personal pleasure is somewhat more important no? Why should I care about humankind, when I can have a thousand orgasms and be worshipped by my slaves? You see, now you are not making any sense.
What I just did in the last paragraph, that's Sade. That's why you need to read Sade to get it. He refutes the logical arguments, shows you how pitiful they are. Then you either accept the philosophy or else reject it with more powerful tools, and that's when you see God.
haha! I will argue that, since it is not guaranteed that i will be respected if i were tyrannous by my slaves, it is better to play it safe and be good to them. Are you are asking, if you are given 100% assurance that you can be tyrannous and get away with it, is there an incentive for you to be good?
Hmm, usually when i am confounded with such issues, i reason along Rawlsian Viel: I could have been that slave, i am abusing. It concretizes empathy to me. The thing is, the axiom that, I can take for granted who i am and i "deserve" who i am doesn't resonate well with me. It is just empirical, having seen how my life was shaped by pure coincidences, where nothing can be attributable to me and of course finding similar patterns in others. My axiom is: life is just accident and i am just lucky to be thinking what i am thinking now and writhing this, while interacting with you. Yeah, Sade can "declare" that, this is not true. But he needs to give me a lot of empirical evidences to sway this axiom of mine. I am pretty sure, he can't! ;)
Yes, yes, the question is not about you now. It is about me (chew a turd), I enjoy killing slaves. And in doing so, I prevent their revolt, because if they talk, i cut out their tongues (chew chew), I enjoy cutting out their tongues, actually, but I leave that to slaves higher in the totem pole, so that they will have incentive to obey. My my, you really aren't thinking are you.
It's basically Nazi thinking, except 150 years before.
Just read Sade, he does it better than I can, and he's already done it once, there's no need to repeat.
sure! which of his work was philosophically illuminating? Will try reading that first to see if i can "take" some more of his work! :)
Eugenie de Franval is a "light" introduction, "Philosophy in the Bedroom" is a little more hardcore, "The Misfortunes of Virtue" is an early masterpiece (it is later elaborated into "Justine" and spins off "Juliette") but the killer, the great work, the founding document, which we barely have by a miracle of preservation, is the 120 Days of Sodom.