Author Topic: DM12 Building a Worldview  (Read 2169 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online Daen

  • Administrator
  • We Don't Care
  • *****
  • Posts: 519
  • Karma: +1/-0
DM12 Building a Worldview
« on: December 21, 2021, 04:37:17 AM »
Daen's Musings #12- Building a Worldview

Everyone should have a worldview.

Don't get me wrong. Everyone already has a worldview. What I mean is, everyone should have one they constructed themselves. In the same way that a table should rest on sturdy legs, or a scientific process should rely on evidence and testing, our worldviews should rest on solid foundational beliefs. And those beliefs should have their own reasons supporting them.

I dropped out of college. Not because the workload was too heavy, or the prices too high (and they are way, way too high for everyone), but because I fell into a deep depression that lasted for the better part of a year. To this day I don't know how it started, and one of my biggest fears is that it might happen again. I do know how it ended though. I started thinking about who I was and who I wanted to be. I started building my worldview from the ground up.

It was really bad back then. Most people in desperate situations who deal with food scarcity wonder where their next meal is coming from. For me, I wondered if I even deserved one. If I hadn't had truly wonderful people in my life, who took me in as if I was one of their own, I'm certain I would have ended up dead in a ditch somewhere. They cared for me when I was too messed up to care for myself. They bought me the time I needed to eventually come out of it and recover.

If my worldview helped me escape that depression, maybe yours can do the same for you. At the very least it can provide a sense of clarity. When you take an action or make a decision, you can do so using that way of thinking as a guide.

Ok, let's walk through it step by step. Very foundational beliefs: what I believe and why. First off, I believe that everyone is equally deserving. Why do I believe that? I'm sure how I was raised contributed, but I need more of a reason than that. 'My parents raised me that way' or 'it's always been that way' are never enough of a reason on their own. We need more.

Humans are social creatures. Even the most introverted ones (and I'm in the running there), need to be around others. That's why people sentenced to solitary confinement often suffer massive and permanent psychological damage from being stuck in a box alone for 23 hours a day. I believe we're all equally deserving because anyone who behaves as if they're more deserving inevitably isolates themselves from other people. And isolates those people from them.

Racism is bad not just from a moral standpoint, but from a practical one. If I judge someone as less deserving because they're a different race, then I'm cutting myself off from everything that race's culture has to offer me, as well as cutting them off from my own culture. I'm hurting myself as well as them. The same is true for sexism, ableism, religious discrimination, and really all other forms of bigotry. I believe we are all equally deserving because we are social creatures and believing we are inherently unequal harms everyone.

Ok, that's one belief and why. I suppose I could base decisions on that: support candidates who tear down walls instead of building them, support policies that spread out privilege instead of concentrating it, etc. If you want to base a worldview on one single belief and why you believe it, go right ahead. I have neither the evidence nor the right to assume it won't work. In my particular case, I have more than one.

Second belief: we were created, intentionally and intelligently. Why do I believe that? Again, I was raised that way, but that's not enough. I could point at the evidence of intelligent design, but even if I believe what I'm told about that, other people often doubt the evidence. Instead I'm going to go with something more basic. More primal, within me.

I believe we were created because I find it comforting. People have looked up at the stars for millennia, hoping there's someone out there who is like us, but different. Non-human, but intelligent. Benevolent, hopefully, but at least there and not just in our imaginations. The idea that we're not alone is helpful to a great many people. I also believe it because I like the idea of us being responsible to someone other than just ourselves or each other. Whoever or whatever created us, and whatever purpose we might have had... that responsibility drives me to be a better person, in the same way that my responsibility to myself and other people does.

Do I have any other beliefs? Sure, but they're all based on those two foundations. Functionally, they're very similar to the condensed version of the Ten Commandments given in Mark 12: 30 and 31: love your neighbor as yourself and love your God. Of course in this case I have a broader definition of 'neighbor'. Because I was raised overseas, I think of everyone, everywhere, as a neighbor. And my sense of 'God' is much more vague as well, but you get the idea.

Every secondary belief should stem from those primary ones (or one).

Why do I believe we should do everything we can to stop climate change? Well there are mountains of evidence about how bad it is and how we (humanity) have caused it. There are also my eyes and ears which show me historic hurricanes, droughts, fires, sea levels rising, etc, etc. But most importantly, it's because it relies on my first belief: climate change is harming some people more than others. Some people have the money to be only minorly inconvenienced by it (see a great many politicians), while their constituents are dying because of it. Because I believe we're all equally deserving, therefore I have to do everything I can to stop climate change. Sure, recycling and composting and limiting driving all help, but ultimately that translates to political action. Supporting candidates who are actually taking action against it. Or if there aren't any in your area, then becoming a candidate who does.

It also relies on my second: because we were created and are responsible to our creator(s), we shouldn't mess up this world they created for us. We didn't make this world, and we shouldn't destroy it. That's just basic decency. You can break your own toys, but don't break other peoples'.

Why do I believe all forms of capitalism are bad? Again, there's the evidence, but mostly it's because it harms some people more than others and everyone is equally deserving. Also, because we have a responsibility to whoever created us to keep on improving. Capitalism may be better than monarchy or tyranny, but that doesn't make it good. We know much better ways of doing things than pooling money in the hands of the few.

The same is true for bigotry, as I mentioned earlier. My beliefs on it are supported by my core beliefs, which are supported by more than just 'it's how I was raised', or 'it's how things have always been.'

Doxing is wrong, because it harms some people more than others. Namely because it harms some people a lot, and others not at all.

The list goes on and on. Every single action I take is based on beliefs, which are based on core beliefs, and I know why I believe them. My whole life is a structured tier, so I never have to do anything without knowing for sure why I did it. That's what pulled me out of the darkest point in my life. Hopefully coming up with a structure like that can help you in the same way.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2022, 05:29:10 AM by Daen »