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#459884 - 09/06/11 06:29 AM "I don't understand"
Quaark Offline

CoS Reverend

Registered: 08/22/03
Posts: 8930
When you say, "I don't understand how", followed by some example of stupidity, you are not actually demonstrating your superiority to the person doing or believing the stupid thing.

Not really.

You are demonstrating (a different sort of) stupidity yourself, in the sense that you are revealing to others your lack of insight into the complexity of human nature and the human psyche, but mistaking this lack of insight as intelligence.

Additionally, you are revealing your lack of insight publicly, in a failed attempt to appear superior, failing to grasp that you are just revealing your own lack of insight, to others who do in fact possess the insight you do not, making your statement doubly, if not triply stupid.

To recognize stupidity for what it is, is good. To assert that not understanding it's sources, causes, and dynamics, is a sign of intelligence, wisdom, maturity, and being more evolved, is not.

The usual motivation for saying "I don't understand" is simply to make a distinction between oneself and others who are "less than" you, which is all well and good, as far as motivations go.

There is no problem with that.

All stupidity has a genesis, and this genesis can be understood without condoning it, or implying that by understanding it, you are tainted by it.

It would perhaps be wiser to phrase one's distinction in a way that also makes clear at the same time that you possess a bit of insight into the hidden life cycle of the stupidity one is discussing.

This approach is doubly intelligent, in that you are performing a service for others who may be a bit behind you in grasping that specific life cycle of dumb.

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#459885 - 09/06/11 06:46 AM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
Bruja Offline

CoS Witch

Registered: 04/22/05
Posts: 2054
Loc: Atlanta, GA.
So…. I'll just publicly thank you for making my day.

This post, coupled with the rain and newly cool weather outside have turned a schedule certain to bring groans of frustration and stress into one I can smile in the face of.
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#459891 - 09/06/11 10:32 AM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
TrojZyr Offline
CoS Witch

Registered: 07/25/01
Posts: 12990
Loc: The Solid State
Usually, I can technically "understand" the underlying causes, mechanics, or dynamics of a given stupid behavior or belief. Where the comprehension breaks down is on the emotional level, because I just can't put myself in the shoes of people who make certain kinds of terrible decisions, or have really stupid beliefs. I can't relate to those people, their problems, or their values, any more than I can fathom what it's like to be a jellyfish.

Occasionally, though, I truly won't understand some genuinely bizarre, often-random behavior, or really left-field belief, because it's too far outside the realm of what I'm used to dealing with. Often, (though not always!) things become clearer after a period of additional observation or research.
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#459893 - 09/06/11 02:32 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
RoyceDavis Offline

CoS Member

Registered: 11/15/10
Posts: 133
Loc: Ukiah, Ca. US
Very well said.

Often, when someone gives me the 'I don't understand...' phrase I will make one attempt to explain the behavior, as I can usually see the process of things, even when I don't agree or condone or even relate. The trouble comes after a sensical (is that a real word?) explanation is given and the questioner STILL refuses to see the mechanics behind the behavior.

I believe that what most people MEAN when they say 'I don't understand...' is more like 'I refuse to understand that because I feel the need to distance myself from it.'
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#459896 - 09/06/11 03:29 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: RoyceDavis]
AdamBomb Offline


Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 75
The contradiction - I see it. I don't think I've ever done that. I do not think I've ever even experienced someone giving me that scenario either.

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#459897 - 09/06/11 03:36 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
Hagen von Tronje Offline

CoS Priest

Registered: 06/28/01
Posts: 10146
100% agreed, with one caveat.

It IS occasionally possible to be incapable of understanding someone who is your inferior - at least, of understanding anything other than that they are terminally retarded.

Your example:

"I don't understand how anyone can believe in god."

Well, I certainly don't agree with belief in god, and I think the evidence for god is so ridiculously weak as to be dismissed out of hand, but I can indeed wrap my mind around what line of stupidity leads people to believe in an invisible man.

My example:

"I don't understand how the hell you can assert that a collection of 20 links to sites with disjointed ramblings on creationism and condemnations of homosexuals as the root cause of 9/11 suggests we need to outlaw guns."

In this case, the person in question has used insane troll logic, which is marked especially for its incomprehensibility.

Occasionally, it turns out the perpetrator of such moronic arguments has a "logical" argument underlying this, insomuch as they have a stupid kind of method to their madness - in the above example, it may come out some time later that the connection they really wanted to make is that these links evidence that people are too stupid to own guns, but this was never mentioned until much later, and so any casual observer lacking the stupid gene to actually put those things together would have totally missed it.

Other times it turns out they are just cuckoo for cocoa puffs and have no damn reason at all for anything they do. In those cases you should notify a moderator so we can put them in the dumpster where they belong.
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#459925 - 09/07/11 06:37 AM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
TheDegenerate Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 3580
Loc: Calgary
I'd be surprised if this hadn't been said somewhere before. I can admit being all too guilty of this from time to time.

Of course, the odd time I will hear somebody begin with that logic. "I don't understand.." etc. A lot of times, especially if their "problem" is an obvious one, I have caught myself replying "I do."

It is one of those weird habits people have developed, and I think more than demonstrating superiority, it is like you said an attempt from the person saying it to distance themselves from something they deem to be silly or abhorrent.

It's the whole Hitler thing in my opinion; the inability of anyone on the fucking Earth to have a conversation about Hitler without adding in some bullshit like "Oh yeah, but he was a really mean guy." It's polishing the good guy badge, creating a gap of association.

Honestly, I don't understand why people feel the need to be apologetic about Hitler. coopdevil

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#459928 - 09/07/11 07:22 AM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
LordofDarkness Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 12/22/06
Posts: 788
Loc: Tennessee, U.S.
That makes sense perfectly.

I don't have much to say about that statement.

It is true that I do not understand some things in some subjects and I do understand in others.

When "I don't understand how [insert sentence here]" is applied, one is also asking to be taught by the one who is supposed to be inferior. You are henceforth submitting your superiority to your opponent.

One would be also showing lack of knowledge on the subject at hand because one didn't acquire the logic and the answer to "why".

Going into a debate without knowledge on the subject is like going into battle without a weapon.


Edited by LordofDarkness (09/07/11 07:31 AM)
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#459930 - 09/07/11 07:28 AM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Quaark]
Jupiter Offline


Registered: 03/20/09
Posts: 151
I just don't understand. whistle

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#459949 - 09/07/11 05:50 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: TheDegenerate]
AdamBomb Offline


Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 75
Hitler was not as much a mean guy, as he was a tyrant and a hypocrite. I bet there were more Polish Aryans than German ones. I'm not taking his side of Aryan mythology, don't get me wrong. It's very absurd to say the least.

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#459954 - 09/07/11 11:32 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: AdamBomb]
Pablovilla Offline



Registered: 06/26/09
Posts: 267
Loc: Victorville, California
Originally Posted By: AdamBomb
Hitler was not as much a mean guy, as he was a tyrant and a hypocrite. I bet there were more Polish Aryans than German ones. I'm not taking his side of Aryan mythology, don't get me wrong. It's very absurd to say the least.


There is something to keep in mind about Hitler, and that is he told the world what he was going to do, and nobody did anything till it was too late, again this county is doing exactly the same now with China, they have said how they will take us over, but few are listening.

I have another one for you and that is mostly Aryans were killed by Hitler and the SS, that is because they were those that opposed his policies. There are records of who was killed unless they were gypsies, Anyone that did not fit into the NAZI plan were killed such as the disabled and mentally ill, gay, Jews, etc. If a child was born with any disabilities they were taken from the parents and killed. It really did not matter what race they were.

What I don't understand is why people want to think that only certain groups were killed, and disregard the facts. I do know that the Jews want people to think that they were singled out and the only ones killed because they like to be considered the "Chosen People", but it goes beyond that.


Edited by paul_r (09/07/11 11:34 PM)
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#459956 - 09/07/11 11:42 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Pablovilla]
Drake_Bamboozle Offline
CoS Reverend

Registered: 06/25/02
Posts: 10774
Loc: England
>> What I don't understand is why people want to think that only certain groups were killed, and disregard the facts. I do know that the Jews want people to think that they were singled out and the only ones killed because they like to be considered the "Chosen People", but it goes beyond that. <<


Yes. It's bullshit. To claim millions of Jews were not killed is absurd. But it was other factions of society aswell. It didn't begin or end with the Jews. What has been perpertrated is a myth.

And it has been hardened into fact over many years through the media.

But when it comes to thinking for one's self I like to quote Rumi:

We drink the devil's drink; even less we care what people think.
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Human beings are as significant as a cigarette burn in the sun.

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#459957 - 09/08/11 12:13 AM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Drake_Bamboozle]
Pablovilla Offline



Registered: 06/26/09
Posts: 267
Loc: Victorville, California
Originally Posted By: Rev_Strongbone
>> What I don't understand is why people want to think that only certain groups were killed, and disregard the facts. I do know that the Jews want people to think that they were singled out and the only ones killed because they like to be considered the "Chosen People", but it goes beyond that. <<


Yes. It's bullshit. To claim millions of Jews were not killed is absurd. But it was other factions of society aswell. It didn't begin or end with the Jews. What has been perpertrated is a myth.

And it has been hardened into fact over many years through the media.

But when it comes to thinking for one's self I like to quote Rumi:

We drink the devil's drink; even less we care what people think.


I really can't think of anyone that would think that millions of Jews were not killed, that is outside of people that believe that it never happened, and that goes against the facts recorded by the Nazi's. I do know that I along with many others that I know would be killed by Nazi's if they were in power today as back then, and it has nothing to do with my race.
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#459975 - 09/08/11 12:19 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Pablovilla]
AdamBomb Offline


Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 75
I don't think he only wanted to kill only groups such as Jews and Poles. He was just a huge hypocrite when came to the Aryan philosophy. This may not be true, but I really would not be surprised if it were - Hitler had Jewish ancestry coming from his father's side and was born under a Jewish last name, he eventually changed it for Political purposes.
This may be false and told by people who obviously hated Hitler and what he did so much that they want to make a fool out of him as much as possible. As if the suicide and non-Aryan features is not enough!

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#459988 - 09/08/11 04:48 PM Re: "I don't understand" [Re: Pablovilla]
Lust Offline


Registered: 11/02/05
Posts: 4214
Originally Posted By: paul_r
I do know that I along with many others that I know would be killed by Nazi's if they were in power today as back then, and it has nothing to do with my race.



I'd goose step and smile before willingly going to the grave. From there, that which is broken cannot be taken advantage of.


Edited by Tier Instinct (09/08/11 04:50 PM)
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�Love is one of the most intense feelings felt by man; another is hate. Forcing yourself to feel indiscriminate love is very unnatural. If you try to love everyone you only lessen your feelings for those who deserve your love. Repressed hatred can lead to many physical and emotional aliments. By learning to release your hatred towards those who deserve it, you cleanse yourself of these malignant emotions and need not take your pent-up hatred out on your loved ones.�
Anton Szandor LaVey, The Satanic Bible

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