Premium Essay

What It Means to Be Human

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By cmusteen
Words 1838
Pages 8
What It Means To Be Human

I have never pondered on such a question that reflects the whole human race and what it means to be a human being. What it means to be a human being is not just having a face, eyes, heart, or being able to drive a car, or to own a house. Being a human being is much more than that, deeper and more passionate. Being a human being is to have the ability to know what is right and wrong, having rational thought and to think deeply beyond the tangible things in the world, and being a human being is to find love. Yet as I think deeply into this more and more, I see that those things are not as important to be a human being, simply because you can live without those things; but to really live and thrive and build a race and society, being a human being is to have the ability to build relationships around anyone and everyone around us. What it means to be a human being is to have relationships.

Many people may argue with this person’s opinion on the meaning of being a human being, but this is an opinion that should be taken into consideration. As all humans know, what makes us unique from animals is our ability to drive cars, create masterpieces of art, build cathedrals, and invent things no one would think of. However, those are only the tangible aspects of being a human being. If we all think carefully, and work out many other aspects to what makes us human, we should find that all other answers inadequate. What makes us truly unique and great is our ability to create relationships and connections; this is what allows us to grow and expand our horizons, to thrive and accomplish many things, and to be closer to our species in order to be successful, this is the most important thing that makes us who we are.

If we are to be compared to animals, such as apes, we see that they have relationships upon each other as well. Although apes and other...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

What Does It Mean to Be Human?

...There are many different traits that we as humans, possess that make us who we are and that make us humans. There are various mental and physical aspects. By examining the movie The Bicentennial Man, one can see that although Andrew was a robot, as time went on, he developed different human traits like language, marriage, affection, fear, friendship, and the need for freedom, becoming more and more like a human. There are different categories which the traits that Andrew had developed can fall under, such as anthropology, psychology, and sociology. In the category of anthropology, Andrew developed a couple of traits and needs that you would never expect a robot to experience. One can see by examining language and marriage, Andrew was growing and developing human needs and actions. Language is something that is unique and specific to humans. Many species communicate through sounds or gestures, but language is and has always been the one thing we have that nothing else has been able to develop. Even though he was a robot, Andrew possessed language right from the beginning. As the movie went on, his vocabulary expanded. He was able to make the tone of his voice change and express different messages. His vocabulary was not automated and he was able to speak to people in full conversation. This is a human trait that is unique, but something he was able to develop so quickly. He was able to master language and learned different words throughout the whole movie. Marriage can also......

Words: 778 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

What Does It Mean to Be Human in World of Intelligent Machines

...What Does It Mean to Be Human in an Age of Social Media and “Intelligent” Machines? Technology has been created and evolving since the beginning of history, all the way from the primitive discovery of fire to the advanced concepts of Global Positioning Systems, technology has come a long way and definitely affects every individual of society. Even during the short span of my lifetime, the change of technology has affected my life and how I perceive the world. Growing up in the 90’s definitely showed me that the advancements of technology changed how people lived their lives. During my childhood I would play outside, and read books to pass the time, but now a days I spend more time inside on a computer, or on my phone to pass the time. Technology is quickly changing and everyday people are being pulled further into the technological void. Even though technology is improving with the internet, science, and social media. Society is given an ever-changing new perspective and viewpoint on the world. Over the past couple of decades, society has reached a point where people are starting to prefer socializing over the internet, or just living their lives in the most convenient way possible. Meaningful social interactions have started to fade with the rise of the technological wave. For example, face to face conversations have become screen to face text messages and emoji’s. In “Technology: A Reader for Writers” many authors pool together their ideas to illustrate the power of......

Words: 999 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

What Does It Mean to Be Human in an Age of Modern Technology?

...What Does it Mean to be Human in an Age of Modern Technology? What does it mean to be human in the age of modern technology? Many feel that technology is only a useful tool and has not changed what it means to be human. Others argue that today’s technological advances have become so rapid, sophisticated and ingrained in daily life it is taking away from the interest, welfare and humanistic nature of our society. Most all do agree that technology has certainly played a role in humanity’s social and behavioral progress throughout history. However, to what extent technology really drives the development of our social and behavioral changes can elicit a heated discussion. Humans are driven, curious creatures that seek to solve problems and have a need for social interactions. As well they desire some form of system of belief (though not necessarily religious in nature) and aspire to be part of something collective or feel a sense of purpose to life. Countless studies provide that human behavior arises out of the interaction between individuals and their environment. Although environments do influence human behavior, many contend the basic tenets of humanity such as compassion, the need to have connected relationships and the desire to improve upon our lives have not changed in the face of technology. However, it is clear that human attitudes and expectations today are certainly very different than even several generations ago. Much of which, is a direct result of......

Words: 2641 - Pages: 11

Free Essay

Omnivores Dilemma

...1. Pollan means that with so many contradicting facts being thrown at people, instead of doing what is right people want to be told what to buy. So if a commercial or someone tells us a fact about a certain food to make it seem healthy people will buy it. People will hesitate from just doing what is right like eating balanced will let someone pursued them into buying something that actually isn’t that healthy for them. This is how the question has become confusing. 2. Pollan means that nationwide we are obsessed with the fact of looking healthy instead of actually being healthy. I completely agree with this because people base what they buy off of what it is supposed to make them look like instead of just plane eating right and exercising. 3. Pollan thinks this because “it never would have happened in a culture in possession of deeply rooted tradition of food and eating”. We are more vulnerable because we are so ethnically and culturally different. We as Americans have no massive religious and cultural ties to food so it makes us more vulnerable to be persuaded into eating no necessarily healthy things. 4. The American Paradox is the people here that are unhealthy and are obsessed with the idea of being or becoming healthy. The French paradox is a healthy group of people that live and eat in ways that we look at as unhealthy. 5. An omnivore eats both other animals and plants. 6. The omnivore’s dilemma is that as omnivore’s we have such a huge selection of possible items...

Words: 2621 - Pages: 11

Free Essay

Explain the Issues to the Claim to the Right of a Child. 25 Marks

...Explain the issues of the claim to the right of a child. Some people see rights as gifts from god, as humans were made in God’s image, making humans sacred. Being sacred gives us rights. People hold this view, while others don’t. That argue that rights come from nature, simply because we hold more intrinsic value than other creatures. Other would even argue that rights come from the responsibilities and duties that we have towards others. Rights are then simply a result of being human; this has an impact on every part of society. This raises many issues in today’s society. The main question surrounding fertility treatment is “Is having a child by artificial means playing God?” Fertility treatment raises a few ethical issues, such as: “Who has the right to fertility treatment?” “When does life begin?” and “Do homosexual couples and single women have the right to fertility treatment?” People who follow the teachings of Christian ethics would say that life is a gift from God. This means that they would say tat nobody has the right to have a child if it involves having a child through artificial means by playing God. Christians believe in the sanctity of life. This means that all life holds intrinsic value and therefore life begins from contraception. This would mean that embryos cannot be used for fetal research, with uses such as IVF. And tr shouldn’t be disposed of if they are unwanted. Some Christians would argue that women have some rights as men, as far as being...

Words: 1061 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

A Philosophical View on Human Nature

...What it means to be human: a philosophical view on human nature Eyong Tabot SOSC 1012 Dimitris Kagia Thursday, March 10th 2016 1 Humanity, what does it mean to be human? Are we simply static beings defined by our ability to walk upright, and perform a range of mechanical tasks? Or does our ability to process thought, pass judgment, and adapt to a changing environment completely define us? For us to determine what it means to be human, we must observe humans actions within their environment. Many philosophers gave answers to the question what does it mean to be human? Now we can form an opinion by exploring these answers. Within this essay, we will be comparing and contrasting the views of two philosophers, Socrates in “The Republic” and Jean-Jacq Rousseau in part one of the “Discourse on the Origin of inequality”. Socrates believed Human nature is unchanging while Rousseau believed humans changed. As we explore both accounts can we find an answer to what it means to be human? In Socrates’s perspective, human nature was like the three classes found in the Polis (The Greek word for community). He believed the three classes which made up the polis were: the rulers, the guardians, and the workers. The rulers created laws, the guardians enforced these laws and the workers followed those laws. The stability of the polis revolved around the boundaries set by those three classes which cannot be crossed. Thus, a worker could not become a guardian, a guardian could not be a......

Words: 1224 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Philjon

...The Use of Animals as Humans Part of Syllabus to which it relates: Could animals or machines be persons? Number of words: 1,608 Source Material: Garfield by Jim Davis at gocomcs.com (http://www.gocomics.com/garfield/2011/08/12) All rights reserved to Jim Davis Garfield, a normal house cat, lives with his owner, Jon, and constantly have talks between each other. Yet, in this comic shown, there is a question derived from the knowledge of what Garfield can do, and that is if animals could be a person. The obvious answer to any average human would be 'No', but only by means of distinguishing between a normal household cat and a human and only comparing the physical body structure of both. After all, Garfield is supposed to be a normal household cat. But, he may have that human personality, because he thinks and it is somewhat of a communication with Jon. He also stands just like a human, and has a background for drinking coffee out of a mug, making him somewhat of a person. Yet this comic, depicting him as Jon's kid only for the practice of having kids, only describe the topic of believing that animals could be persons. Garfield is fat tabby cat that has a big attitude between him, Odie, a dog also in the house, and Jon. Yet, throughout the comic series, Garfield also struggles with human problems, such as diets, loathing of Mondays, apathy, boredom, and working out. Most of the time, Garfield is found either with himself or Jon in a conversation speaking through......

Words: 1698 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Rs - Absolute and Relative Morality Ethics

...a) Explain the differences between absolute and relative morality. (25) To start, it is necessary to define the terms 'absolute' and 'relative' with reference to morality. Absolute means any theory in which the rules are absolute: they are unchanging and universal. Relative means any theory in which something is judged in relation to something else and is therefore open to change. Absolute laws or rules of morality will never change. Another way of putting this is that they are objective. Objective means that I am not bringing in any personal opinions or bias, so the rules that I work out are rules that anybody else would rationally come up with. We may come to work out these rules by use of reason and so any rational human being would be able to use his/her reason to come up with the same set of rules. For example, I may, using reason, work out that it is wrong to lie. An absolutist would think that it is therefore always wrong to lie, in any situation and in any culture. So it is just as wrong for me to lie about cheating on my boyfriend as it is to lie about the fact that Santa isn't real. And I can never think it is right to lie, even, to use Kant's famous example, if there was a murder at my door enquiring as to the whereabouts of my friend. If I knew my friend was hiding in my house, I would have to tell this to the murderer. In this situation, Kant would say that if I had lied to the murdered, and then in some strange coincidence my friend had left my house and......

Words: 1932 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Essays

...a) Explain the differences between absolute and relative morality. (25) To start, it is necessary to define the terms 'absolute' and 'relative' with reference to morality. Absolute means any theory in which the rules are absolute: they are unchanging and universal. Relative means any theory in which something is judged in relation to something else and is therefore open to change. Absolute laws or rules of morality will never change. Another way of putting this is that they are objective. Objective means that I am not bringing in any personal opinions or bias, so the rules that I work out are rules that anybody else would rationally come up with. We may come to work out these rules by use of reason and so any rational human being would be able to use his/her reason to come up with the same set of rules. For example, I may, using reason, work out that it is wrong to lie. An absolutist would think that it is therefore always wrong to lie, in any situation and in any culture. So it is just as wrong for me to lie about cheating on my boyfriend as it is to lie about the fact that Santa isn't real. And I can never think it is right to lie, even, to use Kant's famous example, if there was a murder at my door enquiring as to the whereabouts of my friend. If I knew my friend was hiding in my house, I would have to tell this to the murderer. In this situation, Kant would say that if I had lied to the murdered, and then in some strange coincidence my friend had left my house and was......

Words: 1932 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Abortion and the Categorical Imperative

...treat other human beings as an ends, never only as a means. By refusing abortion, the pregnant woman would be treated as a means, and even if the fetus were considered human, it would be treated as a means as well. Denying access to abortion treats the pregnant woman as a means. Many arguments against abortion involve a concern for protecting the rights of the fetus. But by prohibiting the pregnant woman from having an abortion, she is being treated as a means by which to bring another human being into existence. Telling her that she has no choice but to have the baby is essentially treating her as a vessel by which a life is to be born out of, rather than a human being with the right to decide whether or not she should bring a new life into the world. Callahan discussed how embryonic life can only exist from a woman’s participation in the genetic inheritance of the human species as a whole (1. Callahan, Reader, pg. 17). In other words, the woman’s baby is her contribution to the genetic inheritance of the human species as a whole. Callahan would argue that in having the baby regardless of whether she wanted it or not, she is acting according to the categorical imperative in that she is acting for humankind and not in anticipation of her own well-being or cost-benefit (2. Callahan, Reader, pg. 17). However, according to Kant, if an action is good only as a means to something in particular- in this case, for furthering the genetic inheritance of the human species- it...

Words: 1835 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Human Dignity in Contemporary Ethics.

...Module 1: Why is Human Dignity important ? What is Human dignity ? "dignity: the quality of being worthy or honourable; worthiness, worth, nobleness, excellence. Latin dignitāt-em merit, worth" Oxford English Dictionary The focus of UNCC100 is on the theme of the common good: how we think about what is needed in order for all people to flourish in society. UNCC300 shifts this focus from the social to the individual, although of course, we can never think about the individual without reference to the broader context of society. In this unit, we are going to consider what it means to be a human being, and more particularly, how we can understand the notion of human worth, or value. This is what we are referring to when we talk about human dignity. Activity 1 Complete some research on Rosa Parks . 1. Who was she? 2. What impact did Rosa Parks have on the US Civil Rights movement? 3. What impact do you think Rosa Parks has had on our understanding of human dignity today? 4. There have been numerous songs written about Rosa Parks. The Neville Brothers recorded “Sister Rosa” in 1989. Click the link to hear the song and follow the lyrics. http://pancocojams.blogspot.com.au/2012/01/two-songs-about-rosa-parks-lyrics.html Human dignity is probably a very familiar expression, because the concept is part of many conversations taking place in the contemporary world. At the same time, once we begin to think about it, we find that the basis of human......

Words: 2673 - Pages: 11

Premium Essay

Aristotle and His Books

...name these separately, the subject matter distinguishes them. The latter was written first and talks about man’s character. The former is an improved treatment which discusses ethics in a political scenario. Both books are quite similar in nature though, and the underlying signature of Aristotle’s ethical theory is prevalent. They start with the treatment of what ‘happiness’ is, and then proceed on to explain what ‘virtues’ are required to attain that happiness. In Book I, Aristotle begins by appreciating that there is an inherent disagreement upon what is good for human beings. There is no absolute theory that can explain what humans need to do to attain ‘happiness’. He is also not in search of a list of good things, even though such a list can be drawn up. Humans are generally faced with choices and one action often conflicts with another. What Aristotle searches for in his treatises, is the highest good. He alienates three distinctive features of such: it has inherent value, it is not desirable for the sake of fulfillment of other actions, and all other goods are desirable for its sake. Aristotle recognizes that human action is directed towards the attainment of a certain ‘good’; we make efforts to improve our health, wealth...

Words: 795 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Kant

...It has become popular in our times, mainly as a viable alternative to utilitarianism. Since utilitarian theory downplays the moral significance of such important elements as respect, human dignity, individual rights, and minority protection, an alternative moral theory might b needed. [Utilitarianism, and consequential theories in general, do not accord an intrinsic and incommensurable value to any element - in other words, nothing - not even human dignity or even human life - is to be valued as morally good or morally valuable in itself and isolated from comparison, or weighing, against other goods. In utilitarianism, in particular, the conversion of all things is to happiness or pleasure or utility or preferences; in this way, everything has a common denominator - and this makes it possible to have a ready-made formular for assessment of what one should do morally [act in such a way as to maximize the overall happiness or happiness of the greatest possible number]; the down-side is that nothing - not even life or rights or human dignity - is to be kept out of the utilitarian calculus. Although utilitarianism is handy when it comes to tough cases and moral dilemmas - it has ample scope and range of cases it can handle in its own way - it is rather counter-intuitive in its insistence that even what we generally hold as the most morally valuable things are just numbers in a calculus. Also, since the greatest number prevails, this theory is not sensitive to the needs of......

Words: 2496 - Pages: 10

Premium Essay

Theology Paper

...was unsure of what the class was trying to teach me. Though I knew how I am and what I believe in it questioned my knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. I knew who He was and why I and others believe in Him but I did not know in depths what it was really like until I started to read more about Him. My reflection is on two topics that I have l have learned the most about in this course. The first topic that I would have to say I feel the most passionate about is Mankind and the Image of God. The second topic that I feel exceedingly passionate about is Heart. Part One Theological Definition The Image of God is classified as something that is a physical illustration. We are all created in God’s image. When I read this in the book I felt very strongly about it, “the image is something in the very nature of humans, in the way they were made. It refers to something a human is rather than something a human has or does. By virtue of being human, one is in the image of God; it is not dependent upon the presence of anything else.” (Erikson page 532). The text can mean that humans are made in the spiritual form of God; humans are created in the Lords image. Biblical Foundation In the Biblical text it stated that beyond Genesis 1:26-27 “the image of God is something that is a physical representation.” In Genesis it is stated the humans/mankind are created to represent Jesus Christ on earth. Humans will be the leaders in the Lords eye. “Then God said, Let us make human beings in......

Words: 674 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Askim

...HUMAN RIGHTS ACT 1998 The Human Rights Act 1998 (also known as the Act or the HRA) came into force in the United Kingdom in October 2000. It is composed of a series of sections that have the effect of codifying the protections in the European Convention on Human Rights into UK law. All public bodies (such as courts, police, local governments, hospitals, publicly funded schools, and others) and other bodies carrying out public functions have to comply with the Convention rights. This means, among other things, that individuals can take human rights cases in domestic courts; they no longer have to go to Strasbourg to argue their case in the European Court of Human Rights. The Act sets out the fundamental rights and freedoms that individuals in the UK have access to. They include: * Right to life * Freedom from torture and inhuman or degrading treatment * Right to liberty and security * Freedom from slavery and forced labor * Right to a fair trial * No punishment without law * Respect for your private and family life, home and correspondence * Freedom of thought, belief and religion * Freedom of expression * Freedom of assembly and association * Right to marry and start a family * Protection from discrimination in respect of these rights and freedoms * Right to peaceful enjoyment of your property * Right to education * Right to participate in free elections The Human Rights Act 1998 (c 42) is an Act of......

Words: 1108 - Pages: 5