The Round Table (Rational Pagans Forum)

Science & The Supernatural: A Discussion of the World Around us - Based on Science with an Interest in the Supernatural ...
It is currently 27 May 2020, 04:56

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Forum rules


Please note: Discussion here should be relatively civil. Attack the post, not the poster. Thanks!



Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 02:04 
Offline
First Circle Initiate
User avatar

Joined: 13 Nov 2007, 09:42
Posts: 152
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
For the purpose of this discussion I will formulate the rules as follows:
The Golden Rule: treat others the way we would like them to treat us.
The Platinum Rule: treat others the way they would like us to treat them.

To begin with, it is worth noting that the Platinum Rule can be derived from the Golden Rule by observing that we like to have our values and preferences respected. It follows then that we should extend the same courtesy to others. Therefore both rules encourage us to treat others the way they would like us to treat them.

The difference between the two guidelines is not in the kind of behaviour that they encourage, but in the tools that they provide us with to discern that behaviour. The Golden Rule advises us to apply our personal experience to other people with the assumption that our overarching desires are shared by them. This can be tricky to do, but works well when applied correctly, and is probably indispensable. The Platinum Rule gives us no advice at all. It leaves it entirely up to us to figure out how other people would like us to treat them.

The question that interests me is why would we want to use the Platinum Rule when we have the Golden Rule at our disposal? What does the Platinum Rule give us that the Golden Rule does not? The only advantage I can see is that it is less open to interpretation, and so more difficult to abuse. Does it have any other advantages?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 05:50 
Offline
Postess
User avatar

Joined: 27 Sep 2007, 03:48
Posts: 1223
Location: The thousand acre wood
The first thing that came to mind with the Platinum Rule was SM relationships.

_________________
The Trilogy of Truth: Google, Wikipedia and YouTube.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 06:34 
Offline
Neighbor of the Beast

Joined: 03 Nov 2007, 09:17
Posts: 667
Thoughts before rushing off to the Wage Slave Pits:

I think interpretation may be the key.

I have always interpreted the Golden Rule to mean "respect and accept people for who they are" because that is the way that I would want to be treated. So, after a fashion, they are the same to me.

As with all rules, however, it may be possible to "over-interpret" a simple phrase and make it far more complex than it needs to be...just ask a radical "religilous"

The main problem I see with the Platinum Rule is that it would tend to reinforce negative behavior in others, as opposed to only in oneself, and might lead to a person having issues with self-worth as the rule places greater value on the desires of others...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 07:46 
Offline
First Circle Initiate
User avatar

Joined: 13 Nov 2007, 09:42
Posts: 152
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Tao of Pooh wrote:
The first thing that came to mind with the Platinum Rule was SM relationships.

What are SM relationships?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 08:17 
Offline
Grand Poobah
User avatar

Joined: 18 Sep 2007, 11:26
Posts: 5793
Location: Buffalo, NY
sado machochist.

_________________
Chloride and Sodium: Two terribly dangerous substances that taste great together!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 10:18 
Offline
Grand High Lord Admiral of Hell
User avatar

Joined: 10 Sep 2007, 13:14
Posts: 5726
Location: Buffalo, NY
Hrvoje Butkovic wrote:
The question that interests me is why would we want to use the Platinum Rule when we have the Golden Rule at our disposal? What does the Platinum Rule give us that the Golden Rule does not? The only advantage I can see is that it is less open to interpretation, and so more difficult to abuse. Does it have any other advantages?


"Do not do unto others as you would expect they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same." (Maxims for Revolutionists, George Bernard Shaw)

This, especially when religious-based codes of ethics come into conflict, is probably the crux of the difference. When I do something that's seen in my religion's worldview as an aid to you spiritually or overall, and in doing so, break some rule within your religious worldview, is my action helpful or hurtful?

The platinum rule, however, is nearly impossible to use without communication. The golden rule assumes that everyone wants people to act/think just like they act/think. And, people don't ... :dontknow:

_________________
If you can't stand the heat, don't tickle the dragon ...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 10:28 
Offline
Grand Poobah
User avatar

Joined: 18 Sep 2007, 11:26
Posts: 5793
Location: Buffalo, NY
What Hex said.

People need to communicate, and people need to not be offended when people do their best...

And people need to realize no one wants to be abused in any way... S&M aside.

_________________
Chloride and Sodium: Two terribly dangerous substances that taste great together!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 10:29 
Offline
Postess
User avatar

Joined: 27 Sep 2007, 03:48
Posts: 1223
Location: The thousand acre wood
Hex wrote:
Hrvoje Butkovic wrote:
The question that interests me is why would we want to use the Platinum Rule when we have the Golden Rule at our disposal? What does the Platinum Rule give us that the Golden Rule does not? The only advantage I can see is that it is less open to interpretation, and so more difficult to abuse. Does it have any other advantages?


"Do not do unto others as you would expect they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same." (Maxims for Revolutionists, George Bernard Shaw)

This, especially when religious-based codes of ethics come into conflict, is probably the crux of the difference. When I do something that's seen in my religion's worldview as an aid to you spiritually or overall, and in doing so, break some rule within your religious worldview, is my action helpful or hurtful?

The platinum rule, however, is nearly impossible to use without communication. The golden rule assumes that everyone wants people to act/think just like they act/think. And, people don't ... :dontknow:


"And it harm none, do as thou wilt."

"Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the law."

Where do those fit in?

_________________
The Trilogy of Truth: Google, Wikipedia and YouTube.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 10:46 
Offline
Grand Poobah
User avatar

Joined: 18 Sep 2007, 11:26
Posts: 5793
Location: Buffalo, NY
good ones---

because neither one of them, is, In My Opinion, a valid code.

It's impossibly to 'harm none', and the later code is just so terribly wrong...

Here'sa list of codes we've been compliling, which may be added fodder for this discussion...

_________________
Chloride and Sodium: Two terribly dangerous substances that taste great together!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 10:49 
Offline
Grand High Lord Admiral of Hell
User avatar

Joined: 10 Sep 2007, 13:14
Posts: 5726
Location: Buffalo, NY
Tao of Pooh wrote:
"And it harm none, do as thou wilt."

"Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the law."

Where do those fit in?


Anarchism with an understanding of personal responsibility, rather than worrying about what someone's beliefs/desires might be? Most of the basic rules in any culture deal with simply keeping a (relatively) large group of humans in close proximity for long periods of time without resorting to violence. The "And it harm none, do as thou wilt" fits right into that, and you can work in the niceties of psychological harm as well as physical harm too ...

_________________
If you can't stand the heat, don't tickle the dragon ...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 10:53 
Offline
Postess
User avatar

Joined: 27 Sep 2007, 03:48
Posts: 1223
Location: The thousand acre wood
jess wrote:
good ones---

because neither one of them, is, In My Opinion, a valid code.

Valid code? What would be considered a valid code?

Quote:
It's impossibly to 'harm none', and the later code is just so terribly wrong...

Well, the second one is Satanic "Golden Rule", or whatever they might call it :evil2:

_________________
The Trilogy of Truth: Google, Wikipedia and YouTube.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 27 Oct 2008, 11:05 
Offline
Grand Poobah
User avatar

Joined: 18 Sep 2007, 11:26
Posts: 5793
Location: Buffalo, NY
vaild code= one you can actually adhere to.

The 10 commandments include things that make then non-valid, like not coveting. You can't help what you covet. Acting on it is different...

and the 'harm none' is not possible. You'd live in a state of paralysis if you tried.

The second is simply anarchy. And not the whole of the Satanic code, either... ;)

_________________
Chloride and Sodium: Two terribly dangerous substances that taste great together!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 28 Oct 2008, 02:59 
Offline
First Circle Initiate
User avatar

Joined: 13 Nov 2007, 09:42
Posts: 152
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
I’ve started a similar thread on IIDB. I find it fascinating that both threads have steered away from the Platinum Rule and towards a general discussion of behavioural guidelines. I will provide more context for the discussion in an effort to steer it in the direction that I wanted it to go in.

I’m writing a book on deliberate living. It makes use of certain concepts in the pursuit of this kind of lifestyle. Deliberate living as I’m describing it is strongly self-centred, so these concepts are very much focused on personal experience. I find that they readily integrate with the Golden Rule, with good results. I can apply them to the Platinum Rule as well, but this just converts it into the Golden Rule. This makes me wonder whether there is something about the Platinum Rule that I’ve missed. I just seems odd that there’s nothing more to it than what I’m finding.

This is an extract from my book on the two behavioural guidelines:

Quote:
The Golden Rule

The Golden Rule is an age-old behavioural guideline. It has been advanced in one form or another by every major religion. It has both positive (how to act) and negative (how not to act) formulations. The formulation that I will adopt for this book is to treat others the way we would like them to treat us.

The cornerstone of the guideline is the assumption that people are very much alike. Not with respect to mundane preferences like taste of food and choice of hobbies, but regarding their overarching desires – the desire for freedom of choice, fair treatment, equality of opportunity, and yes, the desire to have their individual preferences in food and hobbies respected. In my experience, these desires are indeed shared by other people. I can’t be sure that they are shared universally, but I assume that they are.

The effectiveness of the Golden Rule is dependent on the mastering of several skills. The first one consists of examining personal experience. As was explained earlier in the book, we need to be able to distinguish emotions from thoughts, identify the emotional state that we are in, determine how circumstances and our reaction to them have conspired to produce it, and evaluate its desirability. We need to do this so that we can tell how we would like other people to treat us.

The second skill is the conversion of personal experience – which is detailed and precise in nature – into a general form. This is a crucial step that is easily overlooked. If we skip it, we will end up treating other people according to our specific individual preferences rather than overarching desires. This could well produce results that are directly opposed to what the Golden Rule seeks to accomplish.

The third skill is empathy – sharing in other people’s experience. Of course, we cannot directly share in their experience. The closest we can come is to share in their circumstances. This is often undesirable, however. If someone is suffering, our goal is not to suffer with them, but to ensure that neither of us suffers. It is about understanding suffering, not partaking in it.

The way to do this is to visualise ourselves to be in the same situation and pay attention to the resulting experience. It won’t be as intense as if we were to actually be in that situation, but hopefully it will be sufficient to give us an inkling of what the other person is going through.

For the simulation to be effective, however, it is not sufficient that the circumstances be the same; the way we interpret them must also be similar. Otherwise we might picture ourselves in the other person’s shoes and wonder what all the fuss is about. If we are naturally optimistic and the other person is a pessimist, for example, we might not see a problem where the other person sees one.

The gap can be bridged by imagining a situation that is more severe than what the other person is facing. No matter how optimistic we may be, that optimism has its limits. If we picture ourselves in a situation that pushes us beyond those limits, we will be better able to relate to the situation that pushes the other person beyond his.

The Golden Rule is applied by putting the three skills together. We use empathy to gain insight into what another person is experiencing, generalise their circumstances into overarching desires that we hopefully share, and then draw on our examined personal experience to decide how we would like them to treat us if the roles were reversed. Then we treat them that way.

Reading this, we might get the impression that following the Golden Rule requires us to invest a great deal of time and effort before we can decide how to act in any given situation. This will be the case if we are utterly unfamiliar with the process. As with any skill, however, the more we practice it, the more proficient we become at applying it. The skills of empathy and examination of personal experience can be mastered to such an extent that using them becomes an automatic aspect of interacting with other people, one that we apply without having to be consciously aware of doing so.

It helps that much of the analysis needed to apply the Golden Rule can be done retrospectively, after an event has come to a conclusion. The results of the analysis can then be applied next time a similar situation presents itself.


The Platinum Rule

A guideline that is sometimes advanced in preference to the Golden Rule is the Platinum Rule. The basic formulation of this guideline is to treat others the way they would like us to treat them. This seems obvious, far more obvious than the Golden Rule. It also appears to be a major departure from the Golden Rule, perhaps even a contradiction. How can two guidelines as radically different as these coexist?

The mystery clears up when we realise that the Platinum Rule is actually a conclusion that follows from the application of the Golden Rule. It can be derived from the Golden Rule by observing that we like to have our values and preferences respected, as eccentric and quirky as they may be. It follows then that we should extend the same courtesy to others.

The difference between the two guidelines is not in the kind of behaviour that they encourage, but in the tools that they provide us with to discern that behaviour. The Golden Rule advises us to examine our experience to help us decide how to treat other people. The Platinum Rule offers no advice at all; it leaves it entirely up to us to discover how other people would like to be treated. This might not seem like a serious obstacle. After all, if our abilities of perception fail us, we can always ask people how they would like us to treat them. However, this can be impractical in a variety of situations.

Relying on outward observation of other people to discern how they are feeling has significant practical limitations. If, for whatever reason, they choose to conceal a part of their experience from outward expression, what they show or tell us will be misleading. This is especially true if they not only conceal an aspect of their experience, but actively hide behind a façade that they deem more socially acceptable. Acting on this kind of information will probably take us in a wrong direction.

There are also many situations where we simply don’t have the time to discover how a person would like to be treated before acting. When a person has had a hard day at work, is in pain due to some ailment, is feeling let down by a friend, is anxious over test results, is worried about the financial situation, or is in distress for any other reason, probing the person to establish how she is feeling and how she would like to be treated is likely to aggravate her further. A more promising approach is to act to alleviate the distress, using personal experience as a guideline, with sufficient sensitivity and care to adjust the approach based on her reaction.

Lastly, knowing how to conduct ourselves towards other people is not enough. Even if, by observing them and listening to them, we managed to arrive at an appropriate course of action, we would still be missing a crucial aspect of our mutual interaction – understanding.

If people feel that they are not being understood, they are likely to remain in a state of loneliness, agitation and despair, even if we do everything else right. Understanding alone can sometimes be sufficient to empower them to progress beyond their present difficulties. Even if it isn’t, it is still a vital first step.

For all its difficulties, we simply cannot get away from projecting our experience onto other people in an effort to determine how best to treat them. Therefore, the question is not whether to use the Golden Rule or the Platinum rule, but whether the Platinum rule has anything to offer us that the Golden Rule does not.

I believe that it does. Its main strength lies in its blatancy. It provides us with a clear guideline for how to treat other people that leaves very little room for interpretation. This makes it much more difficult to abuse than the Golden Rule.

If we are still grappling with all the intricacies of the Golden Rule, we would do well to rely on the Platinum Rule to inform us whether we are on the right track. Once the initial period of familiarisation is over, however, and we’ve become proficient with examining our experience and empathising with other people, the Platinum Rule can be safely set aside.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 31 Oct 2008, 04:43 
Offline
First Circle Initiate
User avatar

Joined: 13 Nov 2007, 09:42
Posts: 152
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Sorry for killing the discussion off like that. I think I’ve found what I was looking for. I got bogged down in how different behavioural guidelines worked and lost sight of why I was discussing them in the first place. So if you were worried about this, you can rest in the knowledge that I’ve found my train of thought again. ;)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: 31 Oct 2008, 07:44 
Offline
Grand High Lord Admiral of Hell
User avatar

Joined: 10 Sep 2007, 13:14
Posts: 5726
Location: Buffalo, NY
Oh ... Well, I'd been digesting it and trying to get some time to respond.

Let me know if you still want feedback, and I'm interested in what you've arrived at ... :wave:

_________________
If you can't stand the heat, don't tickle the dragon ...


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group