So I recently answered a question posted in a friend’s Discord server that I inhabit. The question was posited as so:
“Can someone explain to me what this statement means? “Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never merely as a means to an end, but always at the same time as an end.” It’s from Immanuel Kant but I seem to have a hard time understanding it”
And so this is how I responded:
“Don’t see other humans as tools. See them how you see yourself, an individual person with his own autonomy, desires, dreams, goals, aspirations, values, etc. When I read that statement I sort of remember what I’ve said in the past, “If you hate yourself, then you hate the world. If you love the world then you love yourself.”
It’s sad that a pretty common view among ourselves is in seeing most other people who isn’t part of our circle of friends/tribe/community/”in-group” as no more than dumb beasts who can’t really think for themselves (NPCs, Sheep, etc.)
And certainly, I can understand why that is the case, there’s a lot of stupidity and/or errant behavior in the world, but no one reports on all the attempts in healing the world and doing good so it definitely seems skewed in the favor of the former.
If there is one conspiracy theory I can believe in, it’s the byproduct, intentional or otherwise, of an increasing divisiveness between people: pitting family against family, friends against friends, partners against partners, comrades against comrades, neighbors against neighbors and so on…
It’s gotten so bad to the point that we devolved into genuinely communicating with each other through screens because at least for some/most people who care enough, there’s little to no genuine IRL socialization beyond niceties, small talk, humor, etc. that can easily be found through online interaction.
I’ve recently noticed that several people attempt to mask up/dress up “dark” thoughts (dark thoughts by public standards, stuff like anxiety/depression, societal collapse, etc.) with humor. It’s unfortunate really.
Which again, adds to why everyone seems to look at each other as sheep. They finally get stimulating conversations that they can’t easily get IRL, as a result there is an increase in subconscious disdain of IRL neighbors since, “they’re not like these more interesting people online who can clearly see what I see unlike everyone of these sheep that mindlessly live their lives.”
But honestly, if you saw me IRL, you’d probably notice that I’m a man of extremely few words, not really talkative, and I too, prefer to simply joke around instead of bring up stuff that should be talked about. I would be one of those randoms you’d pass by and call “sheep”
Quite unfortunate that very few people are willing to talk about important matters out in public. It’s even more unfortunate that even for the few that do, there is little to no response (which is why I gave up on creating public IRL discourse).”
Yep, and I shamelessly informed the person that I would copy my response and make it into a post! I should probably start doing that more often honestly. I just gotta remember to do so whenever I write decent essays.
Regards From Your Fellow Wonderer,