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Davis Mcleod
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Davis McLeod is a philosopher and author addressing society, metaphysics and the question of all existence
Davis McLeod is a philosopher and author addressing society, metaphysics and the question of all existence

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Why is there Something Instead of Nothing?
The question
of why existence (not merely material existence, but the existence of literally
everything) 'exists' may seem like a daunting question, most likely because
existence itself seems both infinite and beyond human comprehension. This is a
typical a...
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The Power and Problem of Phenomena: Part 1
What individuals
subjectively identify as 'phenomena' can intrigue, excite, perplex, distract
and often drastically change the way an individual thinks and sees the world
around them. The type of
phenomena we are talking about would be considered anything t...
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The Reason For All Existence (new book)
The Reason For All Existence:  How Existence At Its Fundamental Level Works An exploration into the whole of existence, written in a concise and non-indulgent style. This is not merely about human existence but the book will actually address the question of...
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Is Anything or Anyone Literally Pointless?

Some peoplemay wonder if their lives have made any difference at all. If they had never existed would the world have carried on exactly the same? Most of us would think that if certain things suddenly vanished, like a single drop of water from the ocean...
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Are Debates About Religion Pointless?

Religious debates often seem to be like a football match, or any other competitive sport.

Broadly speaking there are usually two groups of 'die-hard supporters' that attend either event. 
In sports it is usually the home team supporters versus the away team supporters. While in a debate about religion it is usually religious people versus atheists (or sometimes a different religious/spiritual group).

Much like supporters at a sporting event, the supporters in these debates - atheists and religious people - go to see their team/group win (or more accurately: to whoop the butt of the other team).

There is of course a big difference between these two events. In sport, whether the result is a win, loss or draw, the final result is obvious for all to see. Barring a draw, one team has more points or goals scored than the other team, therefore the winner is clearly defined.

Sure there will be people claiming that the awful umpiring won the other side the match, or that one team played unfairly, or some other excuse, but the final result will still stand.

In a typical religious/atheist debate there is no (at least not a very accurate or agreed upon) way of 'keeping score', or knowing who won. The result will be subjective. Usually the religious supporters will see all the points that their team 'scored' and ignore the points of the atheists, and vice versa.

Atheists will think that they have won the debate, and religious people will think that they have won the debate. Neither side is likely to think that the other side is actually a better 'team' and switch allegiances.

Does this mean that debates between atheists and religious people are a waste of time?

Like most sporting events there will be a few people that attend these debates that may not have an allegiance to either side. The question for these people would be: are these debates actually a good way of ascertaining whether a particular religion is right or positive, or if atheism is the way to go?

The debates are hardly an exhaustive examination of either side, and rarely do they consider ideas that lie in between established religious/spiritual ideas and atheism. It really feels as though it is a PR exercise to make both supporters feel good about their own 'side'.

But if there is a chance that just one good argument out there can change the thinking of a handful of individuals that are somewhat on or near the fence in regards: to religion, atheism or spiritualism in general, then you cannot literally say that they are a complete waste of time; even if such debates are unlikely to change our own way of thinking. 

Davis McLeod

Website: www.davismcleod.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Davis_Mcleod
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/davis.mcleod

New Book: http://www.davismcleod.com/Reason_For_All_Existence.html
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Are You Special, Or Are You Unique?

Many individuals have the idea that they are special, or that (certain) humans are a special creation of some kind - more important than other entities. The idea that we were specially created does not merely apply to mainstream religious thinking. It can also apply to those that consider themselves spiritualists, with no specific religion.

Obviously if one's self esteem is low, or at least not as high as they think it should be, then the idea that they were: specially created, more so than any other 'creation', or even a part of something special, could only be seen as something positive. Therefore they would be quite willing to believe this idea.

Who or what is special?
To put simply the desire to feel special is a yearning to feel 'above average', rather than feeling merely 'ordinary'. This desire to feel 'special' would usually be based on an emotional need (or more accurately a want), rather than a calculated one. 

Of course one can intellectually formulate a plan on how to make themselves feel special, or to have others see themselves as such, but the initial desire is still an emotional one. If individuals have a desire to evolve, to improve themselves in some way, then feeling special or being considered special by others would be an obvious indication that one had bettered themselves; in so much as they are considered 'special' in comparison to their peers.

It is arguably far easier to merely believe (or more accurately be convinced by yourself or others) that you have evolved, rather than put any substantial effort into your own inner development. Therefore seeking to feel or be labelled as 'special' is one way of believing that you have bettered yourself; by effectively being thought of as better than those around you.

There are of course those that only want to be seen as 'special' in the eyes of a few select individuals, if not only one certain individual. These individuals may not actually want to feel as though they are better than anyone else. Rather they are likely seeking a sense of normalcy, at least in  comparison to those that they consider to be the norm, as their own self esteem is extremely low. 

This can take the form, perhaps most prevalently, of wanting a lover to treat them as though they are the most special person in their life; subsequently increasing their self esteem.

The problem with 'special'.
The main problem with the idea of 'special' is that it denotes that something else is not special. If special means something that is above average (otherwise why is it special?) then there would need to be that which was not special. If there was not then it would not be possible to distinguish between what was special and what was not.

Individuals have arguably an easier time calling something or someone 'special', than they do saying that something or someone is 'not special'. Most of us don't often consciously think of what is not special when we label something specific as special; especially in regards to a loved one. This is because labelling something as 'special' seems positive, while labelling something as 'not special' seems negative to most of us. 

However when confronted with the idea that labelling something as special means that there must be something that is not special to properly distinguish that which was considered special, many individuals may become troubled by this notion. To then overcome this issue many individuals will employ a series of responses, perhaps the most common being that: 'everything is special'.

If you were to say that everything was special then there would be no point in the concept of 'special' at all. If everything was suddenly deemed to be special, then sooner or later everything would become ordinary or average. In our current human condition there still needs to be a way of separating and identifying all the different things we are familiar with. Saying that everything is special would be tantamount to saying that everything existed. It is therefore not an overly useful way to describe all the different things in our world and beyond.
 
Saying that everything is special, but some things are more special than others things, is really just an overly polite, if not wishy-washy way of saying that some things are special and others are not.  Saying that everything is both special and yet different is just an emotional reaction. Everything is of course different to some degree if you look close enough, but labelling all of these things as 'special' is ultimately meaningless.

We live in a world where the idea of everything being special simply does not ring true, but nor does the idea that 'nothing can be special' seem true either. Different individuals in particular contexts will feel that certain things are special to them. 

As we view things in this world and universe in a limited way due to our own limitations, everything will be viewed subjectively by every individual; human or otherwise. Therefore as everything and everyone is different, certain things will appear special to some, while seeming ordinary to others. 

Individuals will inevitably feel more connected to certain things, therefore 'liking' them more than other things. It is these things that an individual deems to be special. These things can either make the individual feel positive in some way, or they are simply able to relate to certain things (usually other similar individuals) a lot more than to other things (dissimilar individuals).

Therefore the idea of 'special' can only really be used in a very subjective way and within particular contexts. 

Unique rather than special.
In terms of our current, and most likely future human experience, the word 'unique' is far more apt. As previously mentioned every individual to some degree, even if it is seemingly minute to us, is unique and will always be so. This includes things we may subjectively consider to be the same - such as grains of sand or ants. 

On close enough inspection, literally every ant or grain of sand will appear unique. Although obviously you need the natural skill or technology to be able to observe this properly. This is why we usually consider a line of ants, or a handful of sand granules to all be the same with our unaided and limited eyesight. 

At first the idea of 'unique' may not seem as appealing as the idea of 'special', as special denotes something that is positive, as opposed to the idea of uniqueness, which can be either positive, negative, or subjectively neutral. This is why certain people may prefer to be called special, rather than unique.

Life and the entirety of existence however is not sentimental and does not label specific things or entities as special; it takes an individual to subjectively label something this way. The concept of uniqueness however has always been and will always be true, whether we as humans are here to label something as unique or not.


If you are still uncertain about this idea, the reason for why everything is unique is better spelled out in my book: The Reason For All Existence.

Davis McLeod

Website: www.davismcleod.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Davis_Mcleod
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/davis.mcleod

New Book: http://www.davismcleod.com/Reason_For_All_Existence.html
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The Gay Debate - Is Homosexuality Offending Nature?

There is an ongoing debate, usually involving religious or at least fundamentally religious individuals, about whether or not being homosexual is natural or not. We should probably presume that 'natural' here means either intended or good, with some individuals interchanging the two terms as if they meant the same thing. 

There are two things to consider regarding this debate. One concerns the actual meaning of 'natural' and the other concerns the idea of 'offense', which is at the heart of why there is a debate about homosexuality in the first place.

What is natural?
To define something as being natural could at first seem problematic. However if you can think out of the box so to speak, and less emotionally, it could be somewhat of an easy question to answer. For many religious people 'natural' is defined by God's laws, or at least their understanding of what God's laws are. Although a straight forward idea this is not the one we are looking for.

The concept of natural really needs to be thought of as neither good nor bad, but as simply something that occurs. Perhaps we could say that 'being natural' is something that occurs in nature. But what is nature and what is not? Is it everything on Earth excluding human creations that truly define the idea of nature? Are humans now beyond the idea of 'being natural'?  When did humanity leave the natural world - was a specific line crossed or is it mere subjectivity? 

Most would agree that humans themselves are natural. They are seen to come from what we subjectively consider nature to be, but since inventing cell phones and nuclear missiles humans are now seen to inhabit an unnatural world, full of unnatural creations.

When a bird constructs a nest out of twigs, grass and mud is that also considered unnatural, or is it natural because the building materials are quite obviously from the soil and various flora (nature)? The thing that you must understand is that, like animals, anything that a human creates can only ever be created from material that comes from nature. This includes silicon computer chips and nuclear power.

Further arguments may suggest that humanity distorts natural material into something unintended and unnatural. This is judged by how dissimilar this creation is compared to something that, in our eyes, either God created, or naturally evolved without human interference. 

The crux is that no matter what you believe, whether it's creationism or evolution, humans themselves came from nature - they are physically made up from natural material and their characteristics are formed by natural means. 

Even if you were to say that humans consists of souls, you would still need to explain how they were unnatural compared to the contents of this blue planet. If a God created everything why would the planet be natural and the spirit world be unnatural if it all came from the same creative force? If you believe in a more naturalistic type of spiritualism, without a God, but still consisting of eternal souls, the same logic would still apply. 

Where is the actual divide between natural and unnatural? The question that really needs to be asked is: what has truly formed beyond a natural process, whether we consider that to be material or metaphysical?

If aliens had come and altered humans from cave dwellers into what we are now you must still consider those aliens and their behaviour to be natural. They themselves (or even their creators) have formed in natural ways. Although they would have come from an unfamiliar and possibly vastly different world, they should still be considered natural, albeit alien to what we're familiar with. 

This is not to say that we're the product of an alien intervention, it's merely to illustrate that anything that occurs should be considered natural because it has all come about via the same mechanisms. This applies to wether you believe God has created everything (nature), or if everything formed unaided by any supernatural or conventionally intelligent being/s.

Therefore whatever humans do can only ever be considered natural. Everything humanity has created has come from the natural world around them, including the forming of their ideas, dreams and behaviour. This is not reserved to what we consider good, acceptable or useful human behaviour. This includes ideas such as: kindness, cruelty, every type of sexual act, and any other behaviour you can think of. 

People often confuse nature with being good, and anything bad or harmful as being unnatural. The truth is  if we took humans out of this world completely it would still be full of pain, destruction and endless calamities. What we subjectively consider to be bad (destructive) and good (creative) has occurred before our arrival and will undoubtedly continue long after our existence on this planet.

Offence 
There is another issue relating to the 'gay debate' and that has to do with the idea of offence. If someone is offended by a heterosexual couple kissing in the street in a fairly understated way, then this says more about the offended individual than the couple. It's the offended individual's weakness that has brought about such a feeling, which could be a rather deep-seated psychological issue relating to a negative or stifling experience in their formative years. 

If the couple were kissing as though they were about to rip each other's clothes off, this may shine a poor light on the couple that needed to do this in the middle of the street. In this case many people would think it normal to be offended by such behaviour. 

The truth is whenever anyone is offended it is because they are unable to emotionally handle what they are being offended by. Being offended  is a (perhaps subconscious) recognition of a particular internal weakness, rather than merely recognising something external that is subjectively unpleasant. (The topic of why individuals are offended probably needs a whole essay of its own, if not a whole book to properly delve into this topic).

The reason for bringing up the idea that being offended is really a recognition of an internal weakness was not supposed to be directed at those that get offended by homosexuality. It is directed at the idea that any 'God' could be offended. This would suggest that God could not emotionally handle the idea of homosexuality, or anything else that God is accused of being offended by. If any God was truly offended by anything, this could only be interpreted as a weakness. 

It's important to realise that being offended is not the same thing as recognising something that is actually negative to some degree. It is an emotional reaction, not an intellectual reaction. This is why the idea of being offended is separate to the idea of recognising something that is negative.

The reality is more likely that individuals project their own weaknesses upon their God, rather than their God actually being offended by anything. To say that is was 'written', usually in an ancient text, that God was offended by this or that behaviour still doesn't hold much water. The same projection of weakness can be applied to the writer and culture that any such text was written in.

If any such God was truly offended by gay people, or anything else for that matter (which would seem strange for any omniscient being), then surely they could smite the offenders out of existence? Surely this would be more effective than 'hoping' that mere mortals that were as offended as their God by homosexuality, will eventually sort out the whole 'gay conundrum'. So far those that are offended by gay people have been rather ineffective in curbing their homosexuality. 

Claiming that God is in fact actively ridding the world of homosexuality is a claim made from flimsy evidence at best. The odd city flood, fire, or any other such disaster hardly seems like an effective way of eradicating homosexuality, especially for a being that is so very omniscient and apparently so very offended. These events are likely to devastate more heterosexuals than homosexuals. Saying that these heterosexual individuals must have supported gay lifestyles is a desperate and puerile attempt to justify their seemingly random deaths.

Surely the only conclusion is that either these Gods are sleeping at the controls, not even there, or not at all offended by any human behaviour, including: their varying religious practices, war, torture, environmental degradation, Western diets, reality TV or homosexuality (arguably the least harmful thing from these examples). 


Davis McLeod

Website: www.davismcleod.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Davis_Mcleod
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/davis.mcleod

New Book: http://www.davismcleod.com/Reason_For_All_Existence.html
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Introduction

The aim of these articles, or blog writings, is to put forth ideas that do not require a long thesis or book to generate some form of debate or contemplation. Many of these ideas will be related to the actual books that I have written, but the books themselves don't need to be read to understand any of the topics addressed here.

As these writings will be between 500 to 1500 words maximum, they will usually only contain one or two main arguments, rather than a detailed and exhaustive look at one particular topic. Despite the brevity of these writings they are able to give a taste of how the actual books are written. 

Although not all the ideas will have a direct or obvious relationship with the books, they will however always relate to existence, and the human condition and psyche we are familiar with. Therefore they should all be considered connected to some degree. 

Sometimes the ideas may at first seem challenging, perhaps not intellectually, but emotionally. Some ideas could seem objectionable if not read correctly and thoroughly. This can cause a block in the reader where they no longer read the argument rationally, if they continue reading at all. This can include arguments that 'prick' very sensitive areas for some people. Regardless, it is important to read any argument slowly and thoroughly followed by a calm contemplation, otherwise certain ideas can be lost in a wave of emotion.

Having just read this you may wonder what horrid ideas could possibly lie within. None of the ideas will be of a bigotry nature in any way, or condone such thinking and behaviour. Rather the ideas will merely challenge sacred cows, and ideas and customs that people hold dear. This will usually concern ideas that individuals have become accustomed and perhaps slightly attached to for emotional/sentimental reasons, rather than inspired or logical reasons.

This is in no way saying that all the topics will seem controversial or perhaps even interesting to all readers. Some topics could seem straight forward to certain individuals, while challenging to others. It's obviously all subjective. The idea is to challenge people and get them thinking about some of the most important issues that govern and confront our lives. Therefore it is likely that everyone can find something of interest.

Davis McLeod

Website: www.davismcleod.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Davis_Mcleod
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/davis.mcleod

New Book: http://www.davismcleod.com/Reason_For_All_Existence.html
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