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Thread: I'm no stranger to killing, so why do I feel bad?

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
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    I'm no stranger to killing, so why do I feel bad?

    I've killed and butchered many creatures in my life, and for many different reasons, but I still love nature and all its critters. However, I don't like to see needless death of anything.

    Today, I was walking down a bush lined road when a small lizard came out on the pavement. The little guy was about a foot long (30 cm) and stood with his head and tail raised high in the air. It looked like he was going to cross the busy road, but I couldn't stop him because of oncoming traffic. Sure enough, soon as a scooter passed the little lizard raced across the road. He almost made it when a car flattened him.

    It is no great loss; there are lizards of all sizes everywhere in Thailand, but this little guy looked so alive one moment and then crushed flat a few seconds later. And, despite being a hunter and a killer, I felt bad about it. Strange.

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Bacon's Avatar
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    It's all a matter of perception. The mind attaches labels and concepts to everything. Sometimes we anthropomorphise other creates and build a tiny little connection with them, even if only momentary. So the sudden loss can trigger an emotional response.

    But if you attached a 'prey' label to an animal, then your mind would process reality around that animal and it's death in a different way.

    And if I didn't know you better, Ian, I'd say it made you subconsciously reflect on your own mortality.
    Not one shred of evidence supports the notion that life is serious.


  3. #3
    ประเทศไทยเพื่อน Founding Member Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Changone's Avatar
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    How long did the feeling last.....? I mean did the experience have any lasting effect on you?





    [SIZE="1"].....When do you think you will feel ready to leave the house again.....555[/SIZE]

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    Cadet Gold SheriffOfNothing's Avatar
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    A few months ago I was driving along the foreshore when I came across what looked like a long stick on the road. Only at the last second did I realise it was a snake and swerved to just miss it. Fortunately I wasn't speeding mindlessly so I could make the adjustment.

    I did a u-turn and blocked off half the road until the snake had turned around and gone back into the bushland. Only 2 cars came by and just slowed down enough to go around me.

    It was a beautiful big python about 2.5 metres long and certainly wasn't ready to die.

    I doubt that snake would have survived crossing a Thai road though 555.

    It is sad to see life extinguished pointlessly, most humans simply don't care and it happens all too often.

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    I agree with you and Bacon, sheriff. I can rationalize killing and culling excessive animals, providing they are dispatched quickly. I don't like cruelty with anything. Wild creatures need a reasonable habitat to survive. Unfortunatey, loss of wild habitat is almost a daily event. Call me strange, but I like snakes, even venomous ones. I've rescued more than a few. The funniest was a Golden Tree snake that somehow crawled up to my third floor balcony and into my room. I gave up the idea of putting it back on my balcony, so I picked it up and carried it down stairs. You should have heard the shrieks from female staff and guests when I carried it through the lobby and out to the nearby bush land.

    I have no problem with my own mortality. I just hope I can get another 10 years of the life I'm living today. I've pretty much given up hunting, even though I still own a bunch 0f guns. I just don't need the meat anymore. It is much easier to just buy enough for my simple tastes.

    But, getting bad to the little lizard that made a bad choice in crossing a busy road. Wild creatures don't have any understanding of the future; they just try to survive as best they can. I do what I can to help them.

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    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    What makes some animals collect nuts and other food for winter storage before hibernation etc? They must be aware of the future somehow?
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


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    Quote Originally Posted by Distantpeak View Post
    What makes some animals collect nuts and other food for winter storage before hibernation etc? They must be aware of the future somehow?
    They do it instinctively like all creatures on earth. Hunting dogs don't have to be taught to search for game, the same as Border collies don't have to be trained to herd animals. Wild creatures all have their niche on earth and provide a balance in their own environment. Only man screws up that balance. There are the predators and their prey. I spend a lot of time in the wilderness and urban forests trying to photograph the creatures that live there. It truly is fascinating. Even the amazing number of insects have a place. The small lizards keep the insects from multiplying too rapidly.

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    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Forbes View Post
    They do it instinctively like all creatures on earth. Hunting dogs don't have to be taught to search for game, the same as Border collies don't have to be trained to herd animals. Wild creatures all have their niche on earth and provide a balance in their own environment. Only man screws up that balance. There are the predators and their prey. I spend a lot of time in the wilderness and urban forests trying to photograph the creatures that live there. It truly is fascinating. Even the amazing number of insects have a place. The small lizards keep the insects from multiplying too rapidly.
    So what about birds and monkeys that work out how to use a tool to open containers to access food? Gotta be some forward planning and analysis there?
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


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    I'm not saying that wild creatures can't learn and be taught. They learn and adapt very well. They just don't think about the future. I could say the same about many humans. Thais are notorious for not planning for the future. They just figure that Buddha is going to take care oof their needs.

  10. #10
    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Forbes View Post
    I'm not saying that wild creatures can't learn and be taught. They learn and adapt very well. They just don't think about the future. I could say the same about many humans. Thais are notorious for not planning for the future. They just figure that Buddha is going to take care oof their needs.
    But if you can make plans to use a tool to open something... thats more than instinct isn't it?

    I just wonder how much they do think about the future... how do we know what they think?



    Monkeys smarter than humans?

    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


  11. #11
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน RakThai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Forbes View Post
    I've killed and butchered many creatures in my life, and for many different reasons, but I still love nature and all its critters. However, I don't like to see needless death of anything.

    Today, I was walking down a bush lined road when a small lizard came out on the pavement. The little guy was about a foot long (30 cm) and stood with his head and tail raised high in the air. It looked like he was going to cross the busy road, but I couldn't stop him because of oncoming traffic. Sure enough, soon as a scooter passed the little lizard raced across the road. He almost made it when a car flattened him.

    It is no great loss; there are lizards of all sizes everywhere in Thailand, but this little guy looked so alive one moment and then crushed flat a few seconds later. And, despite being a hunter and a killer, I felt bad about it. Strange.
    What you describe is very interesting and recognizable!
    Many times I wonder why some things effect me emotional, while other things equally important don't touch me at all..
    Often wondered about this.. Have thought it has to do with the moment or my personal mind set at that time, but that is not true many times...
    Have thought it had to do with the kind of suffering, but that isn't always true either...

    For me it is more primal... If my mind can give any meaning to suffering or death, it becomes functional... Takes it away from emotions, but rationalizes it...

    To make it technical, Freud described two conflicting primal drives in the "es" (the "it").. Being the life drive and the death drive (libido and thanatos). I think we can all recognize these drives within us.. You don't have to be a hunter to feel the sensation of killing... Just play a video game and you will feel it just the same..

    But these drives are under the influence of the "ich" and the "uber-ich", the ego and the super-ego. These decide if and how far the primary drives can rule us, by immediate reflection and judgement on our impulses..

    So one type of killing can be labelled as functional, not allowing emotions of sympathy or grief, while another killing is labelled useless and a waste, and stimulating these emotions.. Even when when reflecting on it tells you it is "only a lizard" and making it the same to a hunting kill...

    Either that, or you are becoming an emotional old fart..555

  12. #12
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน RakThai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Distantpeak View Post
    But if you can make plans to use a tool to open something... thats more than instinct isn't it?

    I just wonder how much they do think about the future... how do we know what they think?
    I agree that many animals are more intelligent tan we give them credit for..
    Labeling behavior that we can not explain or match as "instinct" does not work for me..

    Birds flying half way across the globe every year, but come back just at the right time at the same spot...
    I see them coming and going every year! No future planning?

  13. #13
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    Nope. Learning to adapt is just another instinct for the smarter creatures. Crows and ravens are some of the smartest birds on the planet, so are Grey parrots. Many creatures can figure things out and use tools. Herons have learned to use commercial fish food to attract small fish close enough to be caught. Some monkeys can be caught in a simple trap made from a coconut shell. The coconut is hollowed out and chained to a tree. A small hole is drilled in the shell that is just big enough for a monkey to squeeze his hand in, but not pull his hand out if he makes a fist. A bait is place in the coconut shell and the monkey squeezes his hand in and grabs the bait. Then he can't get his hand out without releasing the bait. Many monkeys have been caught this way. I would imagine in that time the monkeys would learn how the break the coconut first.

    Crows have learned that if they place hard shelled nuts on the road then vehicles will crush the nuts for them.

    That still doesn't mean that wild creatures have the concept of the future.

  14. #14
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    Providing they have a little wild habitat, there are quite a variety of lizards living near urban neighbourhoods in Thailand. You just have to look for them.






  15. #15
    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Forbes View Post

    That still doesn't mean that wild creatures have the concept of the future.
    so what does?

    And how far into the future is the future? seconds? minutes? Hours?
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


  16. #16
    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RakThai View Post
    I agree that many animals are more intelligent tan we give them credit for..
    Labeling behavior that we can not explain or match as "instinct" does not work for me..

    Birds flying half way across the globe every year, but come back just at the right time at the same spot...
    I see them coming and going every year! No future planning?
    I agree. Pretty arrogant to assume they don't... especially as we are just adapted versions of them...
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


  17. #17
    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    And what about animals recalling where they buried nuts months before? They have to plan to remember... and then find it...

    Article here suggesting they do plan...

    Can animals recall the past and plan for the future? : Abstract : Nature Reviews Neuroscience

    The mental time travel hypothesis of Suddendorf and Corballis makes two claims. We have argued that the first claim that episodic memory and future planning are intimately linked and subserved by the same common process of mental time travel has good support. However, we challenge the second claim about human uniqueness. Indeed, we have argued that at least some animals, notably a few primates and corvids, are capable of recollecting the past and planning for the future. In the case of the scrub-jays, the functional account of caching appears to be reflected in the psychological processes underlying this behavior; by fulfilling the behavioral criteria we have outlined, they therefore show at least some elements of episodic memory and forethought. It also serves as a superb illustration of the integration of the retrospective and prospective components of mental time travel for there is no benefit to the animal of hiding food at the time of caching.
    Last edited by Quarky; 22nd March 2014 at 04:47.
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Tingtong's Avatar
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    Hey Ian, You mentioned that you hope to get 10 more years......I think you'd sh!t that in, your look like a very fit 70 ish yr old and have a good attitude to life.
    I wouldnt be surprised if your still posting here in 20 yrs.......that is if you dont fcuk yourself to death 555555.

  19. #19
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    That was an interesting, technical reply, Rak.

    I try to analyze everything to understand what makes me tick. I love all aspects of nature and I think it was that the little lizard looked so alive, inquisitive and intent, and a moment later he was dead. If he had just been sleeping on the road and got run over it wouldn't have affected me at all. I would not get the same feeling from a slug, a grub or a worm.

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Bacon's Avatar
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    I was going to ask why the lizard crossed the road, but we haven't figured out the chicken yet and I don't want to open a whole new can of worms.
    Not one shred of evidence supports the notion that life is serious.


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