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Old 01-23-2019, 08:28 AM
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Johnny Bravo Johnny Bravo is online now
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Hypothetical: could you make great sacrifices for supernatural gain?

Let's say that you're walking down the street this evening and are approached by a Wise Sage of any flavor you like to choose. A magician, a kung fu master, a Jedi, a time-traveling alien, whatever. He/she/it has been searching for an individual with the natural talent to learn the secret skills. You're given whatever demonstrations are required to convince you that these secret skills are genuine.

However, the Wise Sage informs you that the training will be incredibly difficult - mentally and physically. You will have to learn and process vast amounts of information and endure a brutal training regimen. We're talking serious "80s movie montage" territory here. After a decade or two,* you will unlock the mysteries of the universe.

So - given the absolute guarantee of supernatural powers, do you think you'd be able to stick with the training program? Assume it's whatever would be almost but not quite impossible for you personally, stretched over a long period of time.

*just to avoid fighting the hypothetical, let's say that you won't have to cut yourself off from your family and the supernatural prowess part includes an increased lifespan upon completion.

--

For me, I think it would depend on how long it takes to get to the first demonstrable bit of power. The first little magical sparks or force lift or whatever. Too much time doing "wax on/wax off" and I'd probably throw in the towel.
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Old 01-23-2019, 10:13 AM
Textual Innuendo Textual Innuendo is offline
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Not just yes, but HELL YES!

I mean heck, I basically do this today with ZERO guarantee of supernatural gain, or any other gains, but simply because it increases the CHANCES of material and physical capability gains here in the world, with no guarantees at all, and a 100% chance that at least some of that suffering is wasted.

But if it were guaranteed, there's literally no reason not to, especially since you've reduced it simply to "can you absorb a lot of punishment for a lot of years with no real opportunity costs beyond the punishment" by increasing lifespan and not requiring monastic solitude. So basically something on the order of "could you complete a STEM Phd" at that point.

I think it's actually a more interesting question with heavier opportunity costs, because then you're trading off more than just your own personal suffering.
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Old 01-23-2019, 10:21 AM
Textual Innuendo Textual Innuendo is offline
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To clarify, make that "Could you complete a STEM Phd while training for and completing Ironman's every year" to control for the physical component.

Some of us do those things just for the things themselves, much less for phenomenal cosmic powers guaranteed at the end of it!
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Old 01-23-2019, 11:13 AM
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Inigo Montoya Inigo Montoya is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Bravo View Post
For me, I think it would depend on how long it takes to get to the first demonstrable bit of power. The first little magical sparks or force lift or whatever. Too much time doing "wax on/wax off" and I'd probably throw in the towel.
That. I'd need the occasional clue that I wasn't being completely tooled, but I could probably do it. I can't be trusted to show up to a gym these days, but I did amazing things to myself in Basic Training with just a little bit of input from Drill Sgt.
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Old 01-23-2019, 11:14 AM
mbh mbh is offline
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During the Training Montage, who pays for my rent and groceries?

I need 8 hours a day to sleep, and 8 hours a day to work to pay the bills. If the training takes more than 8 hours a day, then I won't be able to do it.

If the training takes less than 8 hours a day, I believe I could probably do it. (I don't have much of a social life anyway.)

If the trainer supports me financially, then I believe I could almost certainly do it.
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Old 01-23-2019, 12:50 PM
begbert2 begbert2 is offline
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I don't have the fortitude to stick with my daily exercise biking. I don't think it's realistic to pretend that I'd be able to withstand any sort of multi-year regimen - especially if it involves any physical labor more arduous than getting out of bed in the morning. So probably no, I wouldn't be able to maintain it. It'd wipe me out.
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Old 01-23-2019, 12:55 PM
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MrKnowItAll MrKnowItAll is offline
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Hypothetical? Ha!

I've been learning to play the French horn since 1982.
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Old 01-23-2019, 01:21 PM
Tzigone Tzigone is online now
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No. With great power comes great responsibility, and I don't want great responsibility.
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Old 01-23-2019, 02:14 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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I want to have some kind of evidence that there would be an actual reward involved. Just because the being demonstrated that he has supernatural powers doesn't me I'll be receiving them.

I'd really hate to bust my ass for twenty years and then hear "Wow, I can't believe you mortals keep falling for this. And it's still hilarious every time. But my break's over and I need to go back. Bye, sucker, it's been fun. For me."
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Old 01-23-2019, 02:18 PM
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panache45 panache45 is offline
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I think "a decade or two" is beyond my life expectancy.
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