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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:05 am 
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Hi, my name is Rafael Carvão. I've been studying ethics and animal rights and I came up with a general model based on naturalistic/hedonistic point-of-view and I thought that would be good to hear some others opinions. The model is the following:

The right is to connect yourself, if capable, to subjects and/or objects (materials, ideas, energies, etc.) that generate the most positive outcome of neurotransmitters to each subject by yourself connected.

Thanks for the attention, Rafael Carvão


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:40 am 
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Sorry, but you have to be less inclusive and more specific. So I have the right to connect - what does connect mean? Keep as a pet? Own? Sell? anythin, it seems, as long as what ever connect means it produces positive neurotransmitters in that with which I connect. Well, positive neurotransmitters is gobbledigook - since it could mean giving someone drugs of abuse.... but the expression does suggest that the connection must be to a living thing with a brain producing neurotransmitters, that is, it cannot be a "material".

So let's start again: Are animals entitled to rights? If so, which ones? Which animals? Or only to the right to have their welfare considered? Are your ethic practical (I can eat meat as long as the animal's welfare has been considered) or absolute (meat is only OK if it is road kill or a natural death after a life during which all my needs were considered?) ?


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:54 am 
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Thank you for your reply and good questions and sorry for the lateness of mine (I thought I would be notified when someone replies but I wasn't). My goal was to be as general as it could be but, because of that, it could seemed too abstract. "To connect" could mean any connection (a dialog, a physical contact, a bond, a possession of objects etc.). "Subjects" in that case meant all sentient being, i.e. animals, including humans. What I meant was that the value of the connection would be measure by the eventual outcome of neurotransmitters so, If someone takes drugs, the outcome (in medium and long-term) would hardly be positive.
The connection can be with anything (objects ans subjects) but the subject that start the conection must regard the outcome, if capable to foresee it, to each subject,i.e. each sentient being,i.e. each being that generates neurotransmitters, by yourself conneted.

The ethic proposed is absolute: every outcome must be regarded individualy since any animal owns its own body and seeks for its best interest, regardless of the quantity of "positive" neurotransmitters generated in others subjects, e.g. the number or the size or the intelligence of the others animals. So, noone has the right to kill or consume or simply, to connect, to any other subject if it not its best interest.

It is clearer now?


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 1:58 am 
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Yes, the whole predator/prey thing is unethical. I have been reading a book on the feelings and senses of plants. They, too, like most people, have limited sentience. Just how would you propose a lion acts "ethical" to its next meal?
Was it ethical for the lifeboat survivors to pick straws to see who would be killed for food so the others could live, and the next shortest straw had to kill him?
Isn't it ethical for a sensitive person, upon understanding life, to kill themselves, rather that the torment of knowing that to live, many other life forms have to die? Or should they rationalize some way for their mind to tolerate their own behavior to survive? Don't they lose ethics in that case? :razz: #-o =; :- :mrgreen:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/037428 ... b_prodpg_2

What a Plant Knows: A Field Guide to the Senses

Humans are not all moral agents. Many have been raised or developed utter disregard for their own and others' lives, laws, and feelings. So many suicide bombers and shooters, and poachers ruining it for those who are moral. Some are just entirely immorally greedy or self-centered. Some are just mean and cruel, then when caught deny what they did. Many aren't much more than unintelligent herd animals going with the flow, incapable of deep learning and thinking ahead, and only taking on the morals of their herd or flock. Hence, the human gross overpopulation.
Those that are moral, intelligent, educated and ungreedy and living well with a low eco-footprint are a small minority. Most humans know good from bad and do good morally where society approves of law abiding and moral conduct. There are enough of the bad, however, to make it difficult for the good. Plus what many think of as good, is not, ecologically.

_________________
"With every decision, think seven generations ahead of the consequences of your actions" Ute rule of life.
“We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children”― Chief Seattle
“Those Who Have the Privilege to Know Have the Duty to Act”…Albert Einstein


Last edited by Johhny Electriglide on Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:44 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 10:45 am 
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Hi Johhny Electriglide, thank you for your questions.

How a vegetable can feel? By which mechanism?
Ethics comes with the ability to foresee the outcome of your actions in others. So, If a lion can do it at some degree when he hunts, he is being unethical in that same degree, but if not, he is not being unethical, just aethical.
The same with the lifeboat survivors: if anyone that got into the ship could foresee that it is possible that the ship could sink, that one assumes his individual responsability for his own life and the others, unless they want it, have no obligation to help, or in this particular case, to die to help. So, I think it would be unethical to transfer and impose its own irresponsibility or risk taken on others.
Life its not perfect, any animal has its limitation but we are able to do the best of it. And if we are not including non-animals, non-sentient beings to the ethical account, maybe it is not that cruel to live.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:46 pm 
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I think you need to consider some thinking already done for you by philosophers. Second, that there is no need to talk neurotransmitters. They are not relevant to ethics, only to a scientific discussion of the brain mechanisms of feeling and emotion. So you can go and read Bentham on suffering, or Peter Singer, or John Rawls, or Bernard Rollin, Tom Reagan, Mary Midgley, or Richard Ryder. Or simply a book like Sorabji's 1993 "Animal Minds and Human Morals. The Origins of the Western Debate", or Taylor's 2003 "Animals & Ethics. An Overview of the Philosophical Debate". For more recent discussions, try Palmer's 2010 "Animal Ethics in Context", or Gruen's 2011 "Ethics and Animals: An Introduction". In the meantime, probably many would consider the lion not being a moral agent in killing - it does not have a sense of ethics or morals, it evolved to hunt and kill - it simply cannot consider an alternative to its biological make-up, because of that make-up - and is as such an important part of the environment, as can be seen in areas were important predators have been wiped out by humans, who are moral agents and can make decisions about the rightfulness of killing, be it animals or their fellow humans. In short, before trying to post you own scheme of ethics, look how others have already thought about the issues. You do in the end not have to agree 100% with any of them, but they will make you think and clarify you own standards. Enjoy your reading!


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 5:26 am 
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Cobie wrote:
Sorry, but you have to be less inclusive and more specific. So I have the right to connect - what does connect mean? Keep as a pet? Own? Sell? anythin, it seems, as long as what ever connect means it produces positive neurotransmitters in that with which I connect. Well, positive neurotransmitters is gobbledigook - since it could mean giving someone drugs of abuse.... but the expression does suggest that the connection must be to a living thing with a brain producing neurotransmitters, that is, it cannot be a "material".

So let's start again: Are animals entitled to rights? If so, which ones? Which animals? Or only to the right to have their welfare considered? Are your ethic practical (I can eat meat as long as the animal's welfare has been considered) or absolute (meat is only OK if it is road kill or a natural death after a life during which all my needs were considered?) ?


Are animals considered to rights? .... Coby?


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:54 pm 
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Hi everyone, I have evolved my former model of Ethics and Well-being to a new one. I think this is clearer and more comprehensive. I'm looking for your opinions. Best regards, Rafael.

Enkrateia for Pleasure

This post aims to present a proposition on Well-being, Ethics and Altruism and incite discussions on the subject. Please, comment!

Enkrateia comes from Greek and means "in power (of yourself)" as opposed to akrasia which means lack of power (over yourself), lack of self-control, to act in discordance with the best perceived option.

Animals, differently from any other being, are partially autonomous and not exclusively automatons: they think and act in order to have pleasure and avoid displeasure.

For a course of thoughts and actions to generate the ethical and the most pleasurable likely outcome, one should think and/or act in order to generate the most pleasurable likely outcome for yourself and/or each animal involved by the course.

However, one can, in order to avoid the displeasures of the course or have pleasures outside of it, incite other course whose outcome is not the most pleasurable likely for yourself and/or each animal involved.

Therefore, it is required Enkrateia to overcome the casual displeasures and absence of pleasures of the course whose outcome is the most pleasurable likely for yourself and/or each animal involved.

In this sense, it is suggested a central and determinant role of Enkrateia in the obtainment of Well-being, Ethics and Altruism.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 10:29 pm 
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Hello rcarvao:

While animals are certainly not automatons, they can behave as such when they are driven by innate mechanisms such as instinct. Learned behaviours are sometimes non-automatic but can be, such as in conditioned responses. While animals may act to gain positive reinforcements and avoid negative outcomes, to claim this may be because of "thinking" is probably, for just about all animals, untrue - some animals can plan, but can animals reason, that is, use a "what if" or "unless I" scenario? There is a large literature of "altruistic" behaviour and co-operation in animals, and while a lot of those behaviours are either because the recipients of a 'good deed' are related to you, or because you gain status (being 'friends' with a more dominant individual), not all seem to be. However, I don't think there is evidence animals have the utilitarian philosophy of the greatest good for the greatest number, as you seem to suggest.

It is commendable that you would want to think about a model of ethics and well-being that includes non-humans; however, ethics is about what it is to do the right thing, and requires reasoning and a consideration of others, and a system of thinking (true empathy and realizing that another individual both shares things with you (if they are of the same species) but still has a mind of their own, let alone empathy with other species) are properties that animals do not display. That is, while humans can think about ethics in realtion to animals, the reverse is not possible. So I still would repeat my earlier suggestion, go and read some of those great thinkers who have grappled with the question first. To incorporate non-humans in an ethical framework, I recommend Peter Singer.

And in reply to another person here (animal-friendly?): Animals have no rights because they cannot reciprocate. But that does not mean humans cannot extend to them certain rights, such as to have their welfare considered when humans use them, or even when not (in the case of free-living animals).


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2014 1:12 am 
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rcarvao wrote:
Hi, my name is Rafael Carvão. I've been studying ethics and animal rights and I came up with a general model based on naturalistic/hedonistic point-of-view and I thought that would be good to hear some others opinions. The model is the following:

The right is to connect yourself, if capable, to subjects and/or objects (materials, ideas, energies, etc.) that generate the most positive outcome of neurotransmitters to each subject by yourself connected.

Thanks for the attention, Rafael Carvão


The most positive outcome of neurotransmitters? Why? And we are to 'connect' ourselves to these things? Why?


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