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Old 07-17-2010, 11:22 PM
 
Location: West Coast of Europe
19,865 posts, read 18,312,135 times
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I was just watching a movie called Thoughtcrimes and it made me wonder if the world would become a better place if we all were able to read others' minds. Or if at least some people without a doubt were able to and everybody knew about it. Could and would we better our thoughts just in case someone is reading them? Assuming that better thoughts are the foundation for better deeds, would thus the whole world become a better, more decent and moral place?
On the other hand, where would that leave us in terms of privacy and legal issues such as insults or sexual harassment? I am asking this because in that movie the woman capable of mind reading was very attractive (Navi Rawat) and a number of men had sexual thoughts when they first met her.

 
Old 07-18-2010, 01:05 AM
 
10,996 posts, read 11,136,615 times
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Well if there is mind reading going to go on, it might as well be for everybody. Who's to say that the few select people that mind read won't lie, and cause disasters? Money is a big motivator for some people, and they will do or say anything to have it. So, if there is going to be mind reading, it should be everyone.

Sexual harassment can't be classified as such if all the person is doing is thinking sexual thoughts. They would have to act on it in order to get pegged as one. But if all people could mind read, there would definitely be a very large number of people with sex on their brains. In fact, most people would have sexual thoughts at least sometime. People should not be prudish, and accept that others have sex lives and thoughts. If it bothers them, they should stay at home and never interact with anyone.
 
Old 07-18-2010, 09:27 AM
 
Location: Sango, TN
24,889 posts, read 20,307,565 times
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Humans minds are to screwed up.

If we really admitted how often we thought "I'd like to kill that person" or "They'd be nice to get into bed" (and I'm using those quotes as the nice thoughts, the real thoughts are much darker), then we'd be in trouble.

Lying is an needed part of society. Without it, there would be no society. Bad thoughts come into everyones mind, but we were also born with a filter, so we didn't destroy the world with the thoughts of the ancient parts of our brain and instincts.

You want to see people when we all know what we are thinking, look at people who are drunk.
 
Old 07-18-2010, 11:41 AM
 
Location: West Coast of Europe
19,865 posts, read 18,312,135 times
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Sure, but maybe human thoughts themselves would change because of fear of sanctions, assuming humans can change the way they think in the first place. When I think of character changes I assume it is possible. Some people start out bad and gradually become good people under the influence of the right company. Or the other way round.
But maybe feelings are a greater problem than thoughts here. I agree that when intoxicated people tend to show what they are really about. The egoistic and altruistic filters are turned off so to speak.
 
Old 07-18-2010, 02:06 PM
 
Location: Sango, TN
24,889 posts, read 20,307,565 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neuling View Post
Sure, but maybe human thoughts themselves would change because of fear of sanctions, assuming humans can change the way they think in the first place. When I think of character changes I assume it is possible. Some people start out bad and gradually become good people under the influence of the right company. Or the other way round.
But maybe feelings are a greater problem than thoughts here. I agree that when intoxicated people tend to show what they are really about. The egoistic and altruistic filters are turned off so to speak.
The thoughts I posted before, are not thoughts that you can stop. They are part of your genetic code, they are human instinct.

Find woman, have sex, eat food. Anything that stands in the way of those goals, we assume as a threat. The prethought mind thinks "Kill" as one of its terms.

If you're at a bar, and a guy picks up the woman you're with, thoughts come into your head, that you may not even realize, or if you do you just ignore.

The point is, you can't stop these thoughts, you only realize that they aren't the best way to deal with that situation.

Thats why ordinary people, with no clue as to why, will just snap and kill people, sometimes.
 
Old 07-18-2010, 08:16 PM
 
Location: NC, USA
7,088 posts, read 12,698,087 times
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The pros and cons of mind reading

I suspect are on an even keel with underwater baseball, neither is a feasible activity. The only people I have known who claimed to have mind-reading abilities were all con artists, kinda like the guys trying to collect money to mount an expedition to find Noah's ark.
 
Old 07-19-2010, 08:28 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn
40,057 posts, read 29,713,783 times
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If you read 1984, then you already know it's not necessary to be able to read anyone's mind literally in order to charge them with thoughtcrime. The only thing necessary is an accusation! (And if you're interested to take the case from literature/movies to real life, crack open a history book and read about the McCarthy era.)
 
Old 07-19-2010, 08:54 AM
 
3,651 posts, read 8,112,779 times
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Being able to read minds would result in utter chaos. Very glad we can't do it.
 
Old 07-19-2010, 09:35 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,849 posts, read 51,301,408 times
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A lot of people can't even read the written word and comprehend. I can imagine them mind reading and getting totally confused. The whole concept has major flaws anyway. People go through stages of development at individual rates. Someone who is young and just starting to develop trying to read the mind of someone like Mother Theresa or Einstein would find it as incomprehensible as calculus is to a two year old. And lets face facts, there are some minds that we would want to avoid more than an open sewer.
 
Old 07-19-2010, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Sinking in the Great Salt Lake
12,899 posts, read 18,446,350 times
Reputation: 13735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neuling View Post
I was just watching a movie called Thoughtcrimes and it made me wonder if the world would become a better place if we all were able to read others' minds. Or if at least some people without a doubt were able to and everybody knew about it. Could and would we better our thoughts just in case someone is reading them? Assuming that better thoughts are the foundation for better deeds, would thus the whole world become a better, more decent and moral place?
On the other hand, where would that leave us in terms of privacy and legal issues such as insults or sexual harassment? I am asking this because in that movie the woman capable of mind reading was very attractive (Navi Rawat) and a number of men had sexual thoughts when they first met her.
If you look at it from an evolutionary psychology perspective, A LOT of our cognative development can be credited to the solutions evolved from the problem of guessing what the other guy is thinking/ going to do. For example, if we evolved reading each other's minds, we would never have faced or overcome the need to recognize individuals, facial expressions and body language, anticipate other's (and by extension other thing's) actions and/or reactions. Those needs also influenced other higher cognative functions like art, problem solving, logic, mathematics, language, ect.

On a broader, functional level we would no longer function as individuals, but as a collective, or hive mind with it's own set of problems and limitations, not the least of which would be a narrow, singular perspective on everything.

It would be a huge advantage for an individual, but if everyone could do it, mind reading could quite possibly be detrimental to our evolution and development. We would be like bees; limited in scope and function without individual purpose or drive, which of course would kinda suck.

As we are now, we have the best of both worlds. We exist as individuals but can communicate easily with others, share ideas and exist as a species through multiple perspectives.

Last edited by Chango; 07-19-2010 at 09:52 AM..
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