💐 In The Name Of Allah The Most Gracious The Most Merciful
💌 Allah the Almighty loves those with good character,
Those believers who strive to maintain proper manners,
Who try their best to behave decently with others,
Striving to pass Allah’s tests with Sabr and Shukr.
Those blessed with fine conduct know when to be fair and kind,
So they’re not taken advantage of by the unkind.
Kindness doesn’t mean you give others gifts all the time,
But you treat them well, as you avoid gossip and lies.
If you have nothing nice to say, you remain quiet.
Good character inspires you to defend and protect,
Like a defender of the weak, bullied and oppressed.
With Akhlaaq, you’re not the type of friend who gets jealous.
Upon noticing someone’s flaws, you first check yourself,
Understand you’re not perfect, then advise them to help.
Your advice is one-on-one. You never mean to hurt.
Mistreating others only makes one’s self-hatred worse.
From good character is wanting others to succeed,
To thrive for Allah in both worlds, through faith and good deeds.
You enjoin right, forbid wrong, remind generously,
And welcome criticism to improve eagerly.
You dislike what Allah hates: Dhulm, rumors, backbiting,
Gossiping, kibr, laughing at others’ shortcomings,
Stealing, breaking promises without valid reasons,
Suspicion, and looking down on Allah’s creation.
From traits that Allah loves: Patience, courage for His sake,
Gentleness, gratitude, truth in what you do and say,
Mercy, not envying others for what Allah gave,
And knowledge that Allah is our Judge on Judgment Day.
📖 Abdullah Ibn Amr RadhiAllahu ‘anhu narrated: Allah’s noble Messenger Muhammad SallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam said: “Verily, among the best of you are those with the best character.”
Source: Sahih Al-Bukhari 3366
Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi
📖 Abu Huraira RadhiAllahu 'anhu narrated: Allah’s noble Messenger Muhammad SallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam said: “The best of you in Islam are those with the best character, if they have religious understanding.”
Source: Musnad Ahmed 9880
📖 Abu Huraira RadhiAllahu 'anhu narrated: Allah’s noble Messenger Muhammad SallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam said: “Shall I not tell you what distinguishes the best of you from the worst of you? The best of you are those from whom goodness is expected and people are safe from their evil. The worst of you are those from whom goodness is not expected and people are not safe from their evil.”
Source: Sunan At-Tirmidhī 2263
📖 Abu Huraira RadhiAllahu 'anhu narrated: Allah’s noble Messenger Muhammad SallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam said: “The Muslim is the one from whose tongue and hand the people are safe, and the believer is the one people trust with their lives and wealth.”
Source: Sunan Al-Nasā’ī 4995
📖 Abu Huraira RadhiAllahu 'anhu narrated: Allah’s noble Messenger Muhammad SallAllahu 'alaihi wa sallam said: “The most complete of the believers in faith are those with the most excellent character, and the best of you are the best in behavior to their women.”
Source: Sunan At-Tirmidhī 1162
“Lastly, we need a design renaissance, because once you have this view of human nature, that you can steer the timelines of a billion people – just imagine, there’s people who have some desire about what they want to do and what they want to be thinking and what they want to be feeling and how they want to be informed, and we’re all just tugged into these other directions. And you have a billion people just tugged into all these different directions. Well, imagine an entire design renaissance that tried to orchestrate the exact and most empowering time-well-spent way for those timelines to happen. And that would involve two things: one would be protecting against the timelines that we don’t want to be experiencing, the thoughts that we wouldn’t want to be happening, so that when that ding happens, not having the ding that sends us away; and the second would be empowering us to live out the timeline that we want.”
Tristan Harris: TED talk//How a handful of tech companies control billions of minds every day
“The second is we need new models and accountability systems so that as the world gets better and more and more persuasive over time – because it’s only going to get more persuasive – that the people in those control rooms are accountable and transparent to what we want. The only form of ethical persuasion that exists is when the goals of the persuader are aligned with the goals of the persuadee. And that involves questioning big things, like the business model of advertising.”
Tristan Harris: TED talk// How a handful of tech companies control billions of minds every day
“It’s a social validation feedback loop, exactly the kind of thing a hacker like myself would come up with because you’re exploiting the vulnerability in human psychology.”
Sean Parker, Facebook Co-Founder
Right. I think that morality and ethics are subjective and don’t exist outside of our own minds; they’re more like a social construct, a concept that isn’t based on anything concrete. In that sense, nothing is actually “wrong”, most of us just perceive it as such.
People that call themselves carnivores:
“We have repeatedly demonstrated our species’s bottomless ability to lower our standards to make information technology look good.”
Jaron Lanier, You Are Not a Gadget
I have always liked the concept of Aristotle’s virtue ethics - that virtues like compassion, patience and bravery are things that need to be practiced and cultivated, like any other skill, rather than something you are born with.
Compassion is something you have to choose to work at, it isn’t something that you just naturally are. Yes, the world can be a terrible place and it can seem hopeless, especially now, but we can still actively choose to see the good in people and to treat others with kindness. It doesn’t have to be our natural inclination to be kind, it honestly isn’t mine a lot of the time, but we can choose to be kind anyway. Compassion is something we have to consciously practice in our daily lives.
Hey there, I am writing a paper on unethical business practices. I have chosen to focus on Nintendo because a friend of mine has been really heartbroken over some of the things they are doing. To complete this task I have decided to ask around for more opinions. So tell me, do you believe Nintendo is acting unethically? If so, what bothers you the most? No need to go into a ton of detail. Thanks so much!
Olga Khazan in The Atlantic. A Failure of Empathy Led to 200,000 Deaths. It Has Deep Roots.
One giant psychology experiment explains why many people seem like they don’t care about the deaths of the elderly.
Fuck “is it ethical to steal for someone else’s survival."
Here is the true question we should ask:
"Is it ethical for capitalists to keep food and medicine out of the reach of the poor and undesirables even though without these things, those people will starve and suffer?”
Of course, be free to reach out again when you have done more reading, which might be a transformative overnight experience or an experience that occurs later on 3-6 months. I’ve been unable to articulate the things I always wanted to say about anti-natalism, until recently. Since I don’t have many friends/classmates/professors who will investigate these questions, I would imagine these questions are very daunting and difficult to wrestle with during a global pandemic.
Our brain is very good at being bigotry and hateful, which I learned over the summer and I realized I need to be more open-minded, but I feel very uncomfortable with a lot of contemporary ideas in society that don’t fit into my framework of thinking.
I don’t think — not to go against the traditional model of how to approach depression — that it is bad to feel depressed. We live in a very extroverted and incredibly happy-driven society with incredibly high standards that only a few kinds of folx can achieve. We live in a society that has different perspectives and approaches to life even if it hurts other folx economically, socially, or politically. I think suicidal thoughts bring about innovation and change, but they can also fuel a lot of self-loathing — I don’t know how you cope with your depression but I think it takes a lot of self-awareness, empathy, and a high level of kindness to contemplate not having children.
One of the best ways to be environmentally friendly, low-waste/zero-waste, and vegan, is not to bring another sentient being into existence to generate the same mistakes, anxieties, and have the same trajectory as you. I only say this because when I took care of my youngest cousins I tried to teach them how to love insects and plants & they destroyed all the plants 😭 & it made me realize the humxn species only knows destruction before it knows peace.
It can end! Euthanasia is the practice of painless death or assisted suicide. I’ve already planned my entire life of going to multiple graduate schools, doing research, creating a community garden, living the life my parents could not give me because they were low-income and dying peacefully when it is time to die early before my 40s without the obligation of continuing the humxn species.
I don’t plan to live forever — we live in the 21st century … immorality and immortality is very unnecessary. Yet the mainstream social evil is that we have a dominant the healthcare/the sick care industry in the US who needs to be more honest that they profit more from the elderly, the disabled, and the sick by generating profit and money by keeping folx ignorant about ethical healthcare systems.They know they lack bio-ethics. They know they generate so much profit from global pandemics, long-term illnesses and diseases, pharmaceutical drugs, unspoken rules and stigma around mental health, unhealthy food injustices that disproportionately hurt low-income folx of color. The US healthcare system is one of the cruelest systems that keeps the poor down while forcing the middle class to climb through so many obstacles to achieve the bourgeoisie status of keeping them both down under late stage capitalism.
If two of our solutions to war and violence are family planning and death planning, then I’m open to legislation, ethical frameworks, and even practical solutions to reduce violence. ♡
If we have learned anything in 2020, through the pandemic and the lead-up to the November election, it is that social media is really nothing less than a battle ground of opposing ideas. It is where relationships are splintered, where liars and fakes are as common as truth-tellers and the legit, where conspiracy theories come home to roost, where curated content begins to sound a lot like an echo chamber.
And where we go to replenish our dopamine drip.
It doesn’t take a social scientist or tech whiz to tell us these things, but when they do, as in The Social Dilemma, a Netflix Original docu-drama, it speaks volumes. After all, the people interviewed in the 90-minute social media bashing are all former employees of some of the biggest, baddest blue ribbon tech firms in the world, or noted academics who have more chops than a butcher.
If Netflix was hoping to sound a call to action, they are probably a little late. We’ve known for a long time that social media and even email sites have their tentacles wrapped around us, that advertising has become more direct and specific, that we are–just like the point was made multiple times throughout the film–the product itself. After all, we don’t pay for these things, unless you are one who pays for the premium LinkedIn access.
In other words, the price of free, or to be a little less blunt, the price of participation, is that we must endure a lot of inconvenient things we may not otherwise like, but are willing to tolerate because the sites and services allow us to stay in touch with so many people.
Let’s look at some of those inconveniences. We are barraged with a steady stream of advertising that has been fired with laser accuracy, thanks to the sites’ knowing practically everything there is to know about us. My Facebook and Instagram feeds are littered with bikes, cameras, craft beer, and vegan recipes. Somewhere along the line I made it abundantly clear that these are high-interest areas in my life.
We are followed wherever we go. Yes, occasionally we have to answer a little question on our phones about the apps we install, and whether it’s OK for them to keep up with us. When I look at my Google tracks, it basically serves as a mapped history of everything I have done, everywhere I have been. By the way, how do you think Google Maps knows to make the freeway color red, indicating a slowdown? Simple. It is monitoring the speed of everyone on that same road who happens to have the same app as you. The result is crowdsourced information without anyone having to tap a single letter or number.
These sites can also track how long we linger in a given location. Thus, they have correctly deduced that I not only go to craft breweries, but (at least before COVID) am also highly likely to blow–I mean spend–an hour or two there. And I’m not just whistling Dixie, you know. So many beers, so little time.
They know the hotels I frequent (Hilton properties, in case you were wondering). They know I am a rare customer indeed at a chain restaurant, although I do have a minor record of dining at Red Robin or Mellow Mushroom. They know where I buy my gas. They know I tend to take the old two-lane roads. And they know that I stop the van for every old neon sign I have never yet photographed. Don’t believe me? Check out my Insta feed someday (@nickgerlich).
I could go on, but the point is clear: Our lives are open books on social media, and not just because of the things we post. The book of our life is open to them specifically because we allowed them to read it. Those apps, our phones…they are just the facilitators in this game. When we skipped through the Terms Of Service agreement and checked the box without reading a word, we gave them carte blanche.
And guess what? I have no problem with any of this. I actually like being considered “the product,” because it means they are trying to sell to me. I am in control of my wallet, not the other way around, and if in the process of all this, I receive ever more accurate advertising catered to my likes, my life is better. Think about all the crap you see advertised on network television on any given evening. They are using a shotgun in hopes of hitting a few targets along the way. Social media sites, though, are shooting rifles.
In other words, I am not afraid of them. No, they should be afraid of me. I am the one whose money they covet. I understand and accept their revenue model imperative, because as long as they can sell ads, I can keep using the site for nothing. I am willing to trade parts of my life in exchange for what I see as entertainment, even with all the warts and pimples that over-use and addiction can render.
As for all of those former employees appearing in the film, I suspect they all just started feeling a little bit guilty of the successes their efforts and employers were enjoying. The market cap on some of these firms is mind-blowing, testament to the fact that wealth is not finite, but instead created based on the faith that investors have in these companies. I’m not sure what these people are going to do in their self-exiled unemployment, unless they were able to sell off a bunch of stock to fund their guilty conscience.
We must remember this important point: no one made any of us sign up for Gmail, Facebook, Instagram, etc. We did it of our own volition, and how we use it is our business, whether we simply scroll through once in a while, or whether we use it to score enough Likes and Loves to make us feel liked and loved ourselves. Dopamine feels pretty good, doesn’t it? It is implicit that we accepted the terms of engagement, even if we didn’t really read them. “You want to advertise to me while I post pics and videos? OK. Knock yourselves out.”
And even if social media have torn asunder more relationships this year than we would like, we can even control that. Simply quit interacting with the folks whose opinions you loathe, and the algorithms will take care of things pretty quickly. They’ll just fall off your feed. Kinda like I did about six weeks ago. I didn’t have to unfriend, unfollow, block, or delete anyone, and already my feed is like a breath of fresh air.
I just wish I had enough money to buy all those cool bikes and cameras I’m seeing. Cooking dinner is easy enough, but the big boy toys cost big bucks. Hey, can you give me a little love on this?
Dr “No Dilemma Here“ Gerlich
“I was a design ethicist at Google, where I studied how do you ethically steer people’s thoughts? Because what we don’t talk about is how the handful of people working at a handful of technology companies through their choices will steer what a billion people are thinking today. Because when you pull out your phone and they design how this works or what’s on the feed, it’s scheduling little blocks of time in our minds. If you see a notification, it schedules you to have thoughts that maybe you didn’t intend to have. If you swipe over that notification, it schedules you into spending a little bit of time getting sucked into something that maybe you didn’t intend to get sucked into. When we talk about technology, we tend to talk about it as this blue sky opportunity. It could go any direction. And I want to get serious for a moment and tell you why it’s going in a very specific direction. Because it’s not evolving randomly. There’s a hidden goal driving the direction of all of the technology we make, and that goal is the race for our attention. Because every news site, TED, elections, politicians, games, even meditation apps have to compete for one thing, which is our attention, and there’s only so much of it. And the best way to get people’s attention is to know how someone’s mind works. And there’s a whole bunch of persuasive techniques that I learned in college at a lab called the Persuasive Technology Lab to get people’s attention.” Tristan Harris
2017 TED Talk: How a handful of tech companies control billions of minds every day