Ethical Queries



Before I get started, I should warn you that this probably will be considered a somewhat macabre and also quite controversial subject. These are my current views on the cycle of life and death, and how humanity interacts with it, specifically the endeavors to preserve life of other living beings. Something I wish more people (read: everyone) should be aware of, is that the continued existence of every living being costs or has cost the life of another living being. Yes, you read that correctly. So it boggles my mind that a lot of people would want to preserve life, because it serves no purpose.

Wait, what?

Let me explain. It’s fairly common that people want to preserve the life of others, at varying levels of dedication and detail. Some people focus on the preservation of human life. Quite a few wish to preserve animal life as well, of which there are those who wish to preserve a particular group or species, and there are others that want to go that much further by wanting to simply preserve all life. However, let’s just face the bald truth here. Every living thing only lives because of the death of other living beings. It’s eat or be eaten. We eat them, they eat us, they eat each other, they eat plants, living beings all… (Oh, and before you ask, for a while I believed plants to be an exception to living off others’ lives, but when you think about it, the nutrients they absorb from the soil comes from beings that have lived, making plants more like scavengers, feeding off the leftovers. So yes, plants belong to this eat or be eaten cycle too.) Therefore, I’ve long asked myself why people would go through the effort of preserving something that lives off the death of others. Long story short, every time you fulfill your goal of preserving a life, you’ll be damning another life (or more than one, in most cases). So why would you want to do that?

Here’s an example of what I mean: a huntsman who kills animals for sport, shoots a fox and leaves the corpse to decay in the woods. Many people would consider such an act to be wrong, immoral and undesirable, right? Yet by killing the fox (meaninglessly, some would say) the huntsman saves the lives of dozens of other animals that would otherwise fall prey to it. In light of this knowledge, would you still consider the killing of the fox to be meaningless? Sure, the huntsman might not have saving the fox’s potential prey in mind, but that doesn’t change the fact that by killing the fox (for his own selfish reasons) he also saves dozens of lives.

Or does he?

All the lives that are saved from the fox, will continue existing. In order to keep on existing all these preserved lives will in turn have to continue on taking lives for themselves. Lives the fox would have saved had he not been shot by the huntsman… Quite the conundrum, eh? I guess the point I’m trying to make is, no matter what part of the cycle you interfere with, nothing will really change in the big picture: Life causes death, and death causes life. Any effort towards preserving life only serves a personal, emotional need, but will have no meaningful effect on the cycle as a whole.


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