How feelings are the only things that make things and situations matter to us

Reply Tue 9 May, 2017 02:15 pm
I am going to post yet another example of how feelings are the only things that make our lives matter and things/situations matter to us. Imagine someone who could never feel sad about the people who were always dying next to him/her. The death of these people would not matter to him/her.

He/she would be completely apathetic towards the death of these people if he/she could not feel anything from that. Imagine, from there, that he/she were somehow given the ability to feel sad from the death of these people. He/she would now report that this was truly the most tragic and horrible thing for him/her to witness.

This is what I mean here when I say that our feelings are the only things that make our lives matter to us in either the most horrible and tragic ways (our unpleasant feelings) or they make our lives the most beautiful, joyful, happy, valuable, and worthwhile experience for us (our pleasant feelings). You would actually be lying and fooling yourself if you think that things and situations can matter to you without your feelings.

My example with the person having no ability to feel sad is a clear example of how you would be lying and fooling yourself. My other example that clearly indicates how you would be lying and fooling yourself would be with a sociopath who cannot feel any love or compassion towards other innocent living things and people.

This sociopath would not care about other innocent living things and people. They would be nothing more than mere tools for him/her to torture, abuse, and take advantage of. Since this sociopath only feels good about getting what he/she wants and torturing other people/innocent living things, then this is the only thing that matters to this sociopath.

The idea that these innocent living things and people were in pain, suffering, and were taken advantage of would not matter to this sociopath since this sociopath cannot feel anything bad from that. Therefore, as you can clearly see here, feelings are all there is to life. Anyone who claims that there is more to life than how we feel are lying.

Now you understand why I need my good feelings to make my life and everything in it matter to me in a good way to give my life value, worth, joy, beauty, inspiration, etc. Having no feelings or having depression (hopelessness) and misery only renders my life completely devoid and empty. My life is absolutely nothing at all when I am in that state of mind.

Good feelings give our lives good value and make our lives worth living, bad feelings give our lives bad value, and having no feelings at all gives our lives no value and no worth.
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Reply Tue 9 May, 2017 05:32 pm
I just stumbled on this post (I've never been to the site). But the headline was enough for me to be compelled to reply. I agree with you! I have argued that the significance of a life cashes out 100% in terms of emotions/feelings.

Having said that, I must acknowledge that there are a number of details that I have not worked through. For example:

Are emotions judgments (and therefore mind-to-world expressions of intentionality) as Martha Nussbaum argues?

What is the difference between a "mood" and a "feeling" or emotion?

Many highly successful people seem to be much more sociopathic than I am comfortable with. And they seem pretty happy. Does that mean they're doing it right and I'm wrong?

Feelings are not very easy to study. Are you sure (I ask myself) you ought to base the value of human life on a private, first person account of emotion?

Anyway, glad to run across your post.
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