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May 17, 2005

94% materialist

Just as I thought...

You scored as Materialist. Materialism stresses the essence of fundamental particles. Everything that exists is purely physical matter and there is no special force that holds life together. You believe that anything can be explained by breaking it up into its pieces. i.e. the big picture can be understood by its smaller elements.









Cultural Creative








What is Your World View? (corrected...hopefully)
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Via Rob of Lawyers, Guns and Money.


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Yeah, me too....I couldn't see the right side of your bars (formatting problems in my browser), but I got 94% materialist, 94% existentialist. Not that I'm even sure exactly what an existentialist is.

I saw the first five questions and my eyes rolled back in my head, so I think this makes me a _________? (sorry, haven't had a philosophy course in 15 years, and that was pass/fail)

(From my results 96% Esistentialist, 94% Materialist)

Existentialism emphasizes human capability. There is no greater power interfering with life and thus it is up to us to make things happen. Sometimes considered a negative and depressing world view, your optimism towards human accomplishment is immense. Mankind is condemned to be free and must accept the responsibility.

I can't recall the exact numbers but I was more or less diametrically opposed to y'all as 80-some percent "Culture Creative" followed closely by idealist, romanticist, po-mo, etc...

mojo sends

Although, now that I think about it there were some questions I had a problem with in the framing (as is sure to be the case in any quiz like this). For instance, one question asked "Do you believe man is condemned to freedom?" And I remember thinking that while I believe we are free, I disagree with the whole "condemned" thing.

I am not a big fan of Capt. Satre and the Gloom Rangers, so I was not sure really how to answer that one... there were a couple other questions along that line that I had trouble answering.

mojo sends

Here is mine:

Postmodernist 100%
Idealist 100%
Cultural Creative 100%
Existentialist 75%
Materialist 50%
Modernist 44%
Romanticist 38%
Fundamentalist 25%

I used to be a materialist until I started exploring eastern religions and psychedelic drugs. Now I realize that the material world is just a concept we hold in our minds. It's not any more real then the spiritual world, which is another concept we hold in our minds. What is real is the stuff you see when stop thinking and catagorizing things and experience it directly.

I didn't know that made me a postmodernist though.

My results were also heavy on materialism, and light on fundamentalism, romanticism, & idealism.

But like mojo, I found many of the questions puzzling and gave answers that don't make a lot of sense without an explanation.

My basic worldview is that materialism ultimately explains everything, but a lot of the time that doesn't really matter, because our experience of the world is otherwise. Given our limited understanding of the material causes of things, we have to make spiritual and metaphysical analogies in order to function. (A related point: nothing is more irrational than failing to acknowledge that human beings aren't always rational.)

My results:
Existentialist 75%
Modernist 75%
Postmodernist 69%
Cultural Creative 63%
Materialist 63%
Idealist 56%
Fundamentalist 13%
Romanticist 6%

What is a cultural creative, and how can I sign up for its newsletter if it writes one, wherever it lives?

I used to think I was a romantic but when I just switched the focus of my non-existent utopia from the past to the future it made all the logical difference in the world. It's vastly more fun that way. I've always been more of a rivethead than a goth though, anyway, so it wasn't unprecedented.

I found myself picking up nearly all the questions and giving them a nice hard smack on the behind, to the tune of "Condemned to be free? If you want to load up that needle that way, I won't shoot it, thanks. Rephrase and try again."

I scored high on the cultural creative and existentialism. As for the "condemned to be free", that's a direct quote from Sartre, as vanmojo implies. "Man is condemned to be free; because once thrown into the world,
he is responsible for everything he does.", is what google throws at me. My take on the question was, if you quibble with the word "condemned" then you are definitely disagreeing with the question.

IOW, the framing of the question is the point of the question. That's why I didn't think it was odd, and just marked "Disagree"

This is nonsense. The questions were probably the most poorly phrased set I've ever seen. For most, I answered the question as it was written, rather than the way the writer probably meant it. I can tell you with great certainty that I am a materialist. But to statements like this, "All that exists is matter", a materialist will strongly disagree. There is energy. They are not the same thing. If they are considered to be the same, matter is considered a form of energy, not the other way around.

Most of the statements are so confused that I chose the middle answer.

This was one of my favorites:

"Everything is rational if given the right amount of effort."

I bet the author meant:

"Everything has a rational explanation which can be discovered with sufficient effort."

Agreeing with the first statement would mean that you think the Manson family murders were rational. Agreeing with the second statement means that you think that you can discover the motivation for those motives. There is a huge difference.

Postmodernist 63%
Idealist 50%
Materialist 50%
Existentialist 44%
Modernist 38%
Cultural Creative 31%
Romanticist 31%
Fundamentalist 25%

This is just not me.

Oh man, after googling the phrase "cultural creative" I get some weird marketing-ish mishmash about "seeking authenticity". Is this a well-formed definition or just junk?

Exist 63% Roman 56%
Fundie 63% Cult 44%
Pomo 63%
Mater 63%

Is it Tuesday? Then that is about right.

As the only one with a high fundie number, I blame Kierkeggaard.

What was with the question on evolution? "Evolution is a fact and is taking us closer to the spiritual"??? Well, I believe evolution is a fact, but I certainly don't believe it's taking us closer to the spiritual, since I don't think the spirit exists. So I have to answer the same as a fundamentalist would, despite having a completely opposite reason for my answer. Either the designer of this quiz has some clever algorithm to score this question based on the trends set by your other answers, or the whole thing is bunk.

"You believe that anything can be explained by breaking it up into its pieces. i.e. the big picture can be understood by its smaller elements." I dunno about that, necessarily. One can be a materialist and still think that some things are just beyond human capacity to explain — not because they're somehow supernatural, but because humans only have so much memory and cognitive ability.

Perhaps the author of the quiz meant explainable in principle, such as to a Laplacian demon.

Perhaps a real philosopher should write some quizes like this. The Philosopher's Magazine has a few that are pretty good, but they rarely add new ones. I especially like Battlefield God.

Materialism stresses the essence [sic: should be 'existence'?] of fundamental particles. Everything that exists is purely physical matter and there is no special force that holds life together. You believe that anything can be explained by breaking it up into its pieces. i.e. the big picture can be understood by its smaller elements.

Not to get all wonky on this fun quiz, but this confuses materialism with reductive or eliminativist physicalism. Lots of materialists also accept emergence, which means the "big picture" can only be understood in terms of the "big picture," not by breaking things up. In fact, you have to accept emergence if you want to make materialist sense of consciousness and not get bogged down in supervenience theories.

I'm an existentialist. Who knew?

Just as Njorl had to answer in ways the test's author probably didn't intend because of the existence of energy, I got tripped up by my belief that numbers exist.

I especially liked this one:

"There is no truth - Disagree/Agree"

Took the quiz, came out 100% materialist, tried to post, lost data, retook test, came up 88% materialist, lost data again, re-retook, came up 75% materialist and 75% modernist, and I still have no idea what I'm answering differently. At least each time I popped out 0% fundamentalist, though I suspect what this means and what it means to me are two different things.

Meh. What do you learn by putting percentages in front of labels?
I'll go with Dennett in Real Patterns here: "I think that the view itself is clearer than .. the labels, so I will leave that question to anyone who still finds illumination in them."

And yeah, those questions sucked. Not to mention the percentages didn't add up.
The only right answer is to reject the test. =)

Yeah, R Crew, the "There is no truth" statement seemed funny to me as well. It's too late at night for me to give the question real thought, but is it possible to agree with this statement at all and still be consistent? I'm not saying that it's not possible that there is no truth, but is it possible to assert such a statement as being true and yet not contradict yourself? I've never taken a course on Philosophy of Language, so I'm not qualified to even begin the analysis of such a question.

Materialism is very, very screwed up.

Depending upon the formulation, it is either trivial, incoherent, or false.

I don't know why anyone believes in it anymore. It is the most human-centered metaphysic one could imagine, with the exception of solipsism. It is the 20th century's version of geocentrism.

94 existentialist, 88 modernist, 88 materialist, 84 postmodernist.

At least 72 percent of myself is a reaction TO ITSELF.

Also: metafilter had a post on cultural creatives recently. Good stuff. I think they burn scented candles.

"It is the 20th century's version of geocentrism."

“Yeah, but I wonder what it would have looked like if the sun had gone around the earth” -Wittgenstein (from Burke)

Geocentrism was a perfectly acceptable point of view until evidence to the contrary was presented. One who believed the moon was the center of the solar system was not clever for their rejection of geocentrism.

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