Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Are we born good and bad and everything in between?

Most people appear to believe babies aren't born good, or nasty, or anything in between. This implies they are blank slates at birth. How nice or nasty a person is as an adult is then determined entirely by how they are brought up, and more generally everything they have ever experienced. I can't say I agree with this. If that were so, then what ultimately grounded justification could there ever be for praise or blame? Everything we ever think or do would be down to what we have experienced.  So none at all.

This also presumably applies to other aspects of personality too. So, whether shy and introverted, or gregarious and outgoing, or bad-tempered, or mild-tempered, this is all simply determined by everything a person has ever experienced. And what about our interests? Would it truly be the case that if I had been brought up into a different environment, I perhaps wouldn't be interested in the ultimate philosophical questions such as what the world is, what we're doing here etc, but rather perhaps be interested in collecting stamps or coach/bus spotting, or -- heaven forbid -- celebrities?

I'm afraid I think this is all complete nonsense.

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