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Thread: Misconceptions made by (some, and not necessarily most) Atheists

  1. #1 Misconceptions made by (some, and not necessarily most) Atheists 
    Administrator KALSTER's Avatar
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    As counterbalance to Quantime's thread, Strange suggested this title and it seems like a good idea to me.

    There are many misconceptions floating around on both sides of this coin, as well as further coins of this denomination. The first goal of any participation in a particular paradigm is that it should be accompanied by an ongoing pursuit of as good an understanding of the prevailing ideas in that paradigm as possible. That pursuit of understanding should be conducted using the basic tenets of scientific discovery, which includes the possibility of any opinion on facts being wrong or incomplete, no matter who holds the belief in the truth of a given fact.

    I'll start with a few;

    1) Many atheists automatically assume a theist to be irrational and/or unintelligent in general by default. This is patent nonsense. A large number of the most notable scientists of history had been theists, had other irrational beliefs in the occult, etc.

    2) Atheists often make either the mistake of claiming full knowledge of a theist's belief and/or forget and/or wilfully fail to investigate their own reasons for and experiences during their own past theistic phases.

    I urge everyone to please stay civil during these exchanges. We have a great deal to learn from each other and about the human condition.


    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
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    The Doctor Quantime's Avatar
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    1) Many atheists automatically assume a theist to be irrational and/or unintelligent in general by default. This is patent nonsense. A large number of the most notable scientists of history had been theists, had other irrational beliefs in the occult, etc.
    This is based on the premise when talking about the person, not the persons beliefs which is what the original thread was based upon. I already mentioned the statement you just made in mentioning Charles Darwin for example. Studies show that there is also a positive correlation with atheism and intelligence, and that in scientific organizations atheism is prevalent, there has to be some connotation in that too. Charles Darwin was theist when he created his 'Origin on Species' and then became atheist, to which he had great personal struggle in his life with his wife being such a devout Roman-Catholic. This is noteworthy.

    If this thread is about saying some but not all theists make misconceptions, isn't the statement:

    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    Many atheists automatically assume a theist to be irrational and/or unintelligent in general by default.
    Isn't this statement exactly the same? Shouldn't you change that to 'some and not necessarily most'? This is my point, rule for one and one for another. Obsessing about wording when a logical mind would have made the distinction anyway, and if the point DID come up, you clear it up in the relevant thread. which is exactly what I did. It is only an offense to me as an atheist in you saying that, if I allow myself to be offended. It makes out on an offensive level that 'we ignore theists in general', and this is simply not the case. However I would be aware of what you meant and take no offense in it... which I don't. This is why the statement 'I am offended' has no validity. I am offended by a lot of things, I don't go around kicking up dust because I am 'offended' or that taken in a different way this 'could be offensive'.


    2) Atheists often make either the mistake of claiming full knowledge of a theist's belief and/or forget and/or wilfully fail to investigate their own reasons for and experiences during their own past theistic phases.
    Again the same statement I made above:

    Atheists often make either the mistake of claiming full knowledge of a theist's belief and/or forget and/or wilfully fail to investigate their own reasons for and experiences during their own past theistic phases.
    All atheists? Or just some? Do you see how ridiculous and pointless this is to change the wording constantly so that we don't 'offend' or 'over-generalise'? This is why we have brains to see through this and bring it up if necessary, and why the discussion will bring up these issues if mentioned, which they were and were corrected which is why I don't see the need to create this thread. Should we create more threads in opposition? Such as:

    'We need to talk about theism'
    'Could theism be improved....'
    Which we could equally take with 'offense' again, it is semantics and it is pointless.


    The whole premise of theistic debate versus atheistic debate when it comes to science is that it is based on evidence. When a claim is made it has to be backed by evidence. Theists can demonstrate clear understanding of scientific knowledge and atheists can demonstrate lack of understanding of scientific knowledge, this isn't in question here as is seemingly being put forth that it is when I originally proposed the question which is why this whole new thread is pointless.

    I'd prefer not to have this thread titled what it is because it hasn't been created as a genuine question, merely a response to others offense or 'awareness that others might be offended' which has no validity AT ALL in a scientific debate as long as it sticks to the facts which it did.

    Bottom line is the whole point of this sub-forum is about scientific investigation of religion, which is what my thread was based upon - the misconceptions held by theists, some if you want to be semantic. I am not exactly talking about atheists who have these misconceptions because I don't debate the origins of the universe with religion with an atheist do I?

    Misconceptions of scientific knowledge used as religious argument by the theists that I and others (so thusly not all) have debated with certain scientific knowledge that pertains to the questions of the origins of life and the universe. (you could equally call it that if we are going fully nanny here).

    Finally notice when I have said 'theists do this' and 'atheists do that', it is a generalization and it takes a very important role in communication for the sake of simplicity. Which I why I have no issue with a thread with this title 'Misconceptions by atheists' being asked by a genuine member, yet do with it being created for the sake of pandering over a petty little issue of misunderstanding of a generalization that I cleared up had no offensive or malice behind it in another thread. Do you see where I am coming from?

    This is a response to Kaslter publicly and also intertwined with replying to the comments made by Kaslter thus relevant to this discussion. I feel out of place posting this as well I just think it is needed. By all means I could drop it but it someone seems to be making theists special in the regard that we have to be overly careful about the language we use with them and use atheist misconceptions (to what I don't know because as I have said doesn't make sense as to the original question I asked in that thread) as well as to not offend theists.

    Again when I say theist and atheist it is a generalization of a certain number of those 'people' in general.
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    Administrator KALSTER's Avatar
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    All atheists? Or just some?
    Some, as the title says. Let's just assume everyone understands this from now on and leave it at the door in both threads.

    yet do with it being created for the sake of pandering
    Not for pandering. I think it is a good talking point that don't get tackled enough and fully genuine. Let's just get to it. I responded to your PM.


    @ All: May I just ask that the most/some thing be laid to rest? It was a simple misinterpretation. Let's move past it and not derail yet another thread with bickering. The same goes for the legitimacy of this thread. It is genuine, the end. No further discussion of it please. Thanks in advance!
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle
     

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    The Doctor Quantime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    @ All: May I just ask that the most/some thing be laid to rest? It was a simple misinterpretation. Let's move past it and not derail yet another thread with bickering. The same goes for the legitimacy of this thread. It is genuine, the end. No further discussion of it please. Thanks in advance!
    I hope my comments here were not perceived as bickering they were genuine responses, to say no further discussion does seem like a stand in and moving on, policing of members as it seems. I can respect that I want to assert however that my points above are valid and are worthy of consideration and debate, perhaps not to debate here as requested.
    Thanks to all.

    There is only one misconception of an atheist that I can think of thinking back to my theist days and that is the incessant need to treat every theist as though they are the same, as thought they do operate on the same tenet, this may be a human behavioral trait though not limited to the retrospective belief systems.
    Last edited by Quantime; January 8th, 2013 at 01:35 PM. Reason: Spelling mistakes, removing words.
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    the number one misconception of an atheist..

    1: Empirical proof is needed to believe in God.

    do you guys realize what you are saying?

    you are saying that you will believe in God ONLY if you have NO choice but to believe.
    you ask for evidence and proof, you do not want to be given the choice to believe.

    Another Question/opinion/reasoning of mine that ties into this point:
    If God were Proven to exist,we would loose our freedom of choice.
    not by Gods will,but our own,we would give up our freedom to choose on our own.

    there would be Mass confusion as it gets sorted out between what God wants and what religion has been teaching us.

    2: Religion is the ONLY source to find out about God.
    3: Religion = God

    See 'I don't believe in God because religion is so screwed up'

    (when i say Religion, i am talking about organized religion)
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
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    Some misconceptions or mistakes I've personally encountered online by those who hold an athestic stance often (either consciously or unconsciously; and as a byproduct of their culture and their limited exposure other religions/theistic belief systems) have a specific range of religions in mind when they speak of their atheism. And that seems more often than not; to be the abrahamic religions; the monotheistic variant. If religions are fruits, and the abrahamic genre are oranges; the manner in which they speak often gives me the impression that the only fruit they can think of are oranges. Gone are the apples, pears, and grapes, etc from how they formulate the way they both think and speak. It is either oranges or there are no fruits.

    How odd.
     

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    Administrator KALSTER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    the number one misconception of an atheist..

    1: Empirical proof is needed to believe in God.

    do you guys realize what you are saying?

    you are saying that you will believe in God ONLY if you have NO choice but to believe.
    you ask for evidence and proof, you do not want to be given the choice to believe.
    It is part of a general worldview among most atheists. It is about probabilities. Growing up, belief was a given, yet now I can't find much reason to believe in a god. To me, the God of the Bible is no more real than Zeus is. How sure are you that the God you believe exists is the God of the Bible? Why should I believe something exists that has virtually no evidence for it's existence? Simply because I would like to is not a good enough reason. I in turn don't understand why you take that leap.

    You seem like a reasonable fella, so I am sure you know what confirmation bias is? You have talked about how you see God's hand in so many things, but why don't I see it? I have looked. Also, the idea of God's hand being in so many little things in your life; doesn't such an idea seem kind of vulgar when you look at His apparently complete absence from so many other's lives, who suffer terribly from cradle to grave? No offence.

    2: Religion is the ONLY source to find out about God.
    Difficult one and it continues from the above. My only source of information about god is from the various religions and from the theists themselves. That's it. How else? From my perspective, there is no other source and not because I already don't believe in a god, but precisely because I looked for God without religion and didn't find him. That is why I became atheist in the first place.

    If you go looking for god and desperately want to find god, chances are you will find reasons to believe in him. We are human. We rationalise, we delude ourselves, we imagine stuff and we even hallucinate sometimes, even the sane. Do you understand where I am coming from?

    3: Religion = God
    I am sure that happens a lot. In reality, any person's interpretation of their god is different from the next. But still, people group themselves with certain religions and variations on those religions. Those groups share belief in a central set of tenets, tenets that define the god they believe in. I think it would be safe to say that, at least in terms of the broad details, one could quite accurately know the specific beliefs of the majority of people. People like you who might not subscribe to a particular religion are not that common. It seems to me that in this case it is incumbent upon you to make your particular position known before beginning a debate and forgive assumptions that might be accurate in most cases?

    I often see though that some atheists automatically assume that someone who identifies himself as a Christian is a fundamentalist and believer in the Bible inerrancy. That is very often a mistake.


    @Scooby: I agree, though the Abrahamic religions do account for by far the most theists. I would guess that in the vast majority of cases, the reasons they are atheist would apply to those other religions as well. I do take your point though and I try to be clear about what I don't believe in when asked in terms of religion, but also in terms of specific definitions of what god is actually supposed to be.
    Last edited by KALSTER; January 8th, 2013 at 06:19 PM. Reason: Fantastically bad grammar. Still not brilliant.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    the number one misconception of an atheist..

    1: Empirical proof is needed to believe in God.

    do you guys realize what you are saying?

    you are saying that you will believe in God ONLY if you have NO choice but to believe.
    you ask for evidence and proof, you do not want to be given the choice to believe.

    Another Question/opinion/reasoning of mine that ties into this point:
    If God were Proven to exist,we would loose our freedom of choice.
    not by Gods will,but our own,we would give up our freedom to choose on our own.

    there would be Mass confusion as it gets sorted out between what God wants and what religion has been teaching us.

    2: Religion is the ONLY source to find out about God.
    3: Religion = God

    See 'I don't believe in God because religion is so screwed up'

    (when i say Religion, i am talking about organized religion)
    Replace the word, "God" with "Faries, goblins, unicorns or chocolate cheeze whiz snorting space dragon" and you realize how absurd the claim is.

    There is nothing wrong with needing evidence of something in order to entertain the concept that it exists.
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    This thread belongs in philosophy, if one think that applying logic to argument about non-physical entity (like beliefs/faith/god) is what is philosophy.
    If we stick with social science, the wording MUST be accurate because it is the only thing we have to find appropriate experiment. I see two kind (at least)
    - historical: statistics/pool about beliefs/behaviors in perspective to social upbringing context
    - psychological: the "brainy" condition like delusion, irrationality, hope, fear, IQ...

    I check the opening OP of the other thread, it also contains logical error, and factual misinterpretation.

    I'll stick to the logical/phylosophical that seems to be the main course of this dish...

    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    X atheists automatically assume a theist to be irrational and/or unintelligent in general by default
    some rational being assume that theist are irrational about their theism. That is the sensical things to write, even if false.
    As Quantime has mentioned, there is a correlation between being rational and atheist. Nevertheless one final truth is that every human being is BOTH rational and irrational.
    The problem I see with many Atheist is that they fail to observe something very rational: The slightest logical mistake in any reasoning could simply lead you ANYWHERE (**). The Atheist that IS most Rational would NOT opposed in anyway reason with beliefs. It will flee any debunking Religion/God/Theism, because it is NOT like debating if the earth is flat. One is physical, can be experimented upon, the other is a dream on a meme.I tend to see everything in a fractall way, that leads me to more accurately represent rationality, theism, and other notion in their many proper dimensions. No one mental representation is identical to one another, about God, or BigBang or Evolution or whatever. Some theist may have similar ideas about angels (in the angel sub dimension) but totally different ideas about Satan. This to say the bi-polarisation of debate is a no brainer, it does not exist in a rationally processed debate.

    Mental representation can be very similar and repeat themselves endlessly about any subject in any dimension. To be more specific, I see on this site many "scientific minded" people treat science very much like theist threat religion. A revealed recipe to handle things.
    My own dwelling into theism stopped at the age of 6 when I "discover" then Santas did not exists. Since then I still beleive in Santa, much more then God, because Santa is much more real, especially when it is about to have some present.
    Rational being have no problem seeing the rational into Religion, especially when its business model rely on providing social services to the population (like gift, marriage, burial, pardon, cosmology, and other various services Religion has specialized into)

    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    This is patent nonsense. A large number of the most notable scientists of history had been theists, had other irrational beliefs in the occult, etc.
    Yes indeed, because false, and even rephrased it still is. The unlarge number of scientist who said are theist are just proof you can be both rational and irational at the same time.
    (**) Here a specific error is also in the usage above of the and/or unintelligent. Intelligence is noticeably a fussy thing, and intelligent people will be intelligently irrational.

    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    2) Atheists often make either the mistake of claiming full knowledge of a theist's belief and/or forget and/or wilfully fail to investigate their own reasons for and experiences during their own past theistic phases
    This whole statement is a claim be itself. Maybe scientific studies exist with measurement about such thing as "theist's beleif".

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    t
    1: Empirical proof is needed to believe in God.
    This one I'll settle once for all:
    Atheist don't believe in God, that's why they are call Atheist(or Untheist). No proof required.
    Rational people believe in observable things, especially when they can be reproduced/measure experimentally, even if completely un-provable. God is an example, I believe in the word God, the notion, because a lot of people use it contently to describe a LOT of VARIOUS thing (culture dependent). There are no place enough in this page to write all the known God, measured and observed, repeatedly.
    I don't think God need to be proved more then Santa Claus. Santa is more likely to be encountered in a mall, that's all.

    People that believe that a God (a person/being) exist somewhere is as irrational that people that believes that Quarks exist somewhere.
    -Quantum mechanics is a much more boring story line, with its numerous un-plausible things , but the end result may be some neat computation about a lazer toy, or a nuclear bomb.
    -Religion are often quite funny, sex, treason, miracle, but the end result is social cohesion, or mass murdering or harboring pedophiles.

    It's a matter of taste. But what is not is curiosity, if you have some you will use the paradigm that can rationaly explain the other, which is superior in this dimension (rational explanation)
     

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    Nut Hunter.. NMSquirrel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    How sure are you that the God you believe exists is the God of the Bible? Why should I believe something exists that has virtually no evidence for it's existence? Simply because I would like to is not a good enough reason. I in turn don't understand why you take that leap.
    you are a smart fella..

    you have read my posts..

    there is a common theme among my posts..

    the answer to your question is simple..

    Because i choose to.



    You seem like a reasonable fella, so I am sure you know what confirmation bias is? You have talked about how you see God's hand in so many things, but why don't I see it? I have looked. Also, the idea of God's hand being in so many little things in your life; doesn't such an idea seem kind of vulgar when you look at His apparently complete absence from so many other's lives, who suffer terribly from cradle to grave? No offence.
    1, because you choose not to see him..

    2, atheist misconception # 4.. God doesn't exist because if he did there would be no suffering.

    this is a logical fallicy..(my parents don't care for me because they allowed me to get hurt..)
    if your parents warned you to not touch the flame or else you would get burned and you touched the flame, would it be your parents fault that you got hurt?


    If you go looking for god and desperately want to find god, chances are you will find reasons to believe in him. We are human. We rationalise, we delude ourselves, we imagine stuff and we even hallucinate sometimes, even the sane. Do you understand where I am coming from?
    so there is an element of 'If i believe in God then i am not sane' in your perspective.
    see how your statement would work against itself?(rationalise,delude,and imagine)
    (refuse to believe because it would make you less than you are)
    or refuse to believe because on some level,there is fear of ppl thinking of you, how you are thinking of theist now.(the term 'you' is used loosely,and does not nesecarily mean you personally)

    I am sure that happens a lot. In reality, any person's interpretation of their god is different from the next. But still, people group themselves with certain religions and variations on those religions. Those groups share belief in a central set of tenets, tenets that define the god they believe in. I think it would be safe to say that, at least in terms of the broad details, one could quite accurately know the specific beliefs of the majority of people.
    i started with a simple premise..

    God is good.
    and
    Whatever man creates,man corrupts.(he created religion)

    then it is a matter of sorting through how a persons own humanity can corrupt a good God.


    People like you who might not subscribe to a particular religion are not that common.
    hehe..i could argue that ppl who like to think for themselves are not that common...

    It seems to me that in this case it is incumbent upon you to make your particular position known before beginning a debate and forgive assumptions that might be accurate in most cases?
    make my position known?
    thought i was doing that..

    as far as assumptions that may be acurate in most cases..not sure what you mean..but remember..i am also human and as such, i am just as susceptible to my own humanity as everyone else..


    I often see though that some atheists automatically assume that someone who identifies himself as a Christian is a fundamentalist and believer in the Bible inerrancy. That is very often a mistake.
    so many times have i gotten into discussions where they assumed i believed 'X' just because i said i believe in God..


    but also in terms of specific definitions of what god is actually supposed to be.
    this comment is a good seguay(sp?) into the dice..

    this is just an analogy of how i think of it..

    when someone tells me 'God is X', i am obligated to believe he believes that and that is what he see's..
    if someone else comes to me and says 'God is Y', something completely different then what the first guy said..
    I would still be obligated to believe that they believe it as that is what God has shown them..

    now if i were to have a table at eye level and place a 6 sided die on it, and placed four ppl on each edge of the table,
    (the assumption in this analogy is that no one knows what a dice is)
    then asked them to describe what they see..they would all say 'it is square' but each would say they see a different number..

    this is where i think religion is today..they are too busy trying to define God the way that they see him, they do not consider that the other person is seeing the same thing from a different perspective.

    so can you see how the question of 'Define God' is not a valid premise?
    to define God is to limit him, to define God is an attempt to 'pidgeonhole' God into a set of rules, so that the ppl defining God can control and manipulate others

    so whenever you talk to a theist remember that they are just trying to show/share with you the way they see him..our own humanity makes it about justification and getting others to beleive as we do (to justify their own beliefs, IE 'If i can convince others to believe as i do, then that would justify my beliefs as others believe as i do..)

    this is from 'what God wants from me is not necesarily what God wants from you'


    this is one thing that really irks me about religico's..(ppl more focused on the ritual and the script, than on God)
    one size does NOT fit all..
    (what works for them,doesn't necesarily work for me.)
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    the number one misconception of an atheist..

    1: Empirical proof is needed to believe in God.

    do you guys realize what you are saying?

    you are saying that you will believe in God ONLY if you have NO choice but to believe.
    you ask for evidence and proof, you do not want to be given the choice to believe.
    While I admit this may be a significant digression (in which case I do apologise) I would like to touch upon - and in some degrees question - the word choice in this context.

    Now I certainly admit there may be people who truly do have a choice in whether or not to believe, and if there are I actually kind of envy them, because I was never really given this choice - my own state of belief was never a choice, it was always a conclusion.

    Back when I held some slivers of a theistic belief, it was because the model I had of reality led to that conclusion. When I subsequently lost the remaining shreds of faith I had, it was not because I chose to, it was because my understanding of the reality around me was updated to the point where my conclusion changed. I would describe it as saying you have a choice whether 1 + 1 = 2 or 1 + 1 = 5; no matter how much you might tell yourself you have chosen the latter, it requires some rather significant mental gymnastics to convince yourself that it is the truer statement.

    Bear in mind, this is not an argument about whether theism is true or not, in this context my concern is more about the application of the word choice; my reason for this is that unless I am somehow rather extraordinary in how my mind works (which is possible but I doubt it), you have no more choice in being a theist or a non-theist than you have a choice in noticing or not noticing something that is right ahead of you. Take the Invisible Gorilla experiment as an example - people do not choose whether or not to notice the person in a gorilla suit. They notice it or they don't, but never once do they make the conscious decision whether they want to or not.

    Or put even simpler: one can not choose to unsee what has been seen.
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    Here is my provisional list - some items may duplicate earlier observations:

    1. The assumption that God must be the God of the bible, or at least an Abrahamic God.
    2. The parallel assumption that since the notion of the God of the Bible is pretty ridiculous that the notion of God must therefore be ridiculous.
    3. (This one applies to theists as well.) The assumption that if there is a God then there is life after death.
    4. The presumption that since there is no proof of God there is therefore no evidence for God.
    5. The assumption that all theists have the same concept of God.
    6. The belief that unicorns and Gods are equivalent.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    1. The assumption that God must be the God of the bible, or at least an Abrahamic God.
    Not at all, the same principle of asking for evidence is based on all Gods, all of the approximate pantheon of 3000 that humans have invented.

    2. The parallel assumption that since the notion of the God of the Bible is pretty ridiculous that the notion of God must therefore be ridiculous.
    Well science holds a stance that says that the biblical claims of the bible seem infeasible and parallels them with its contradictory style of 'morality' and theme as one thing and then concludes the book is written by man. Then secondly the notion of God and the claim of his existence for it to be accepted wholly by science is to provide evidence for him, I digress the notion of God is ridiculous with certain amounts of scientific understanding. I for one am actually currently trying to think how god can 'exist' at all in the universe I have come to understand I am concluding that actually stating 'I believe in God' and 'God exists' actually is preposterous and doesn't make sense with the right framework; I am willing to explain my conclusion if requested .

    3. (This one applies to theists as well.) The assumption that if there is a God then there is life after death.
    I don't think is the case at all. I wouldn't see how an atheist would assume that if there is no God still accepts the possibility of life after death, you would in say spiritualist churches and believers though assuming they do not believe in a god, but the word atheist here can be subjective because Christians are atheist to 2999 of the Gods that humans have created and indeed if they believed in one more of them or said 'they are the same' would be breaking the first commandment.

    4. The presumption that since there is no proof of God there is therefore no evidence for God.
    If 'proof' means 100% true then nothing in the universe that we come to understand is 100% true, general relativity for instance can be as close to 100% as 99.99% and indeed as evolution can (which they do) but never absolute 'proof', to use the word proof is kind of a misnomer it begs the question and says "well since we can't be 100% sure science is right, there is an 'in' for god". So we say and go along with the evidence as it is substantiated and proven to work, perhaps proven is another generalization then for sake of argument, from observation.

    This whole evidence based reality is which humans stand firm on, we have evidence that jumping off a cliff will result in our demise, that running into a busy road is not rational, that jumping off a moving bus is not rational, all of these we have woven into our minds and no sane person would challenge them, why extend the same liberty to God? What evidence would there be for God? Again still the question implies, which God of the 3000? What kind of God? A Deist God? A simple deity? A sub-god? An 'involved' God as the Judeo-Christian god is claimed to be?

    4. The presumption that since there is no proof of God there is therefore no evidence for God.
    You'd have to arrange the sentence as it doesn't make much sense to the way science would say:
    There is no evidence for God therefore it is highly implausible that God exists.

    5. The assumption that all theists have the same concept of God.
    Some do, but the premise is the same I see. Although as stated there are many different types of God but seeing as there is an equal amount of evidence for those Gods - zero, then they all fit into the same category of 'faith'. Doesn't matter what concept of God you have if there is no proof scientifically. I don't even understand the whole believing in God thing anyway, why believe in a God? What's the point? I can look into my own past belief here, I'm going to keep my train of thought however.

    6. The belief that unicorns and Gods are equivalent.
    In an evidence based sense yes, perhaps sometimes this is an over-generalization atheists bring up but they based that argument on evidence.

    Please bare in mind I mean no offense or condescending attitude towards anyone when posting. I have been a devout theist (Christian) in the past myself and have put forth the same arguments as are being put forth here. I wouldn't be where I am today saying what I am today if I had not asked those questions and come to the new conclusion that I have. I am not talking from one side-atheism, I am talking from my experience with both.
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    I suppose, as I triggered the creation of this thread, I should contribute something:

    Misconception made by (some, and not necessarily most) Atheists: that religion is "evil" and the cause of some/most/all war, conflict and misery.

    MMB(S,ANNM)A: even if they don't consider it evil, they consider religion to be of no value and/or contributing nothing of value to the world.

    MMBSANNMA: it is possible/desirable to eliminate religion; the world would be a better place without religion.
    Without wishing to overstate my case, everything in the observable universe definitely has its origins in Northamptonshire -- Alan Moore
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    - my own state of belief was never a choice, it was always a conclusion.

    I would describe it as saying you have a choice whether 1 + 1 = 2 or 1 + 1 = 5; no matter how much you might tell yourself you have chosen the latter, it requires some rather significant mental gymnastics to convince yourself that it is the truer statement.

    you have no more choice in being a theist or a non-theist than you have a choice in noticing or not noticing something that is right ahead of you. Take the Invisible Gorilla experiment as an example - people do not choose whether or not to notice the person in a gorilla suit. They notice it or they don't, but never once do they make the conscious decision whether they want to or not.

    Or put even simpler: one can not choose to unsee what has been seen.
    you are touching on something here that i have trouble communicating..(pry cause i barely understand it)
    it is in the process of how we believe..
    i think it may be a misconception for both parties..(actually all ppl)

    is thinking that the fire is hot a belief? no..it is empirical..(fact)
    is thinking 1+1=2 a belief? no..it is empirical..(fact)
    is thinking that your friend will screw you a belief?..yes..there is only evidence that he will..


    these and other examples are not beliefs because they are empirical..(am i misuseing the word?)
    belief is seperate from 'known' what you see is known.(with the exception of misinterpreting what you see)
    belief applies to the unknown.

    which of these statement is acurate? ;

    I believe in unicorns.
    I believe in cars.
    I believe in my spouse.
    I believe in electricity.
    I believe in science.

    there is a difference in contexts..its like apples and oranges..

    Misconception #5, the concept/application of the term 'believe'

    so your example of the ape suit, doesn't quite fit..
    now if someone later told you that there was a man in a gorilla suit in that place while you were there, this is where belief comes into play..
    whether you saw the ape or not is irrelevant to the 'belief', what if there were no pictures taken and many ppl in the same place..now you ask everyone if they saw an ape..some will say they saw it and some will say they didn't(lets not adress whether they think the ape was real or a man in a costume(which qualifies for my religion vs God arguement))..so where is the 'proof' that the ape was actually there?

    you do not need proof to believe..
    the proof argument is just a way to justify your own beliefs that he doesn't exist.
    just as in the ape..just because you didnt see it, doesnt mean he wasnt there.


    belief is not empirical or objective. it is subjective

    so..
    misconception #6..belief=fact
    (or #5 refined..)



    (from your reply to john)There is no evidence for God therefore it is highly implausible that God exists.
    there is evidence, but most atheist dismiss it because it is subjective.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you are touching on something here that i have trouble communicating..(pry cause i barely understand it)
    it is in the process of how we believe..
    i think it may be a misconception for both parties..(actually all ppl)

    is thinking that the fire is hot a belief? no..it is empirical..(fact)
    is thinking 1+1=2 a belief? no..it is empirical..(fact)
    is thinking that your friend will screw you a belief?..yes..there is only evidence that he will..
    Honestly, as far as the mind is concerned, I don't think there actually is that much of a difference between them.

    In fact, you don't have to look far even in our modern society to find people who cling very tightly to their own convictions in spite of mounting evidence to the contrary - you have people who are in abusive relationships whose minds construct ever more elaborate labyrinths of reasoning just to keep clinging to the conviction that their partner loves them. You have children who go through the same with abusive parents who find ways to blame themselves because they can not comprehend a world where parents indulge in utterly senseless violence. You even have people who are knee-deep in debt yet still find themselves utterly convinced in the belief that they can still afford a new car.

    These are not exceptions - to my understanding, the mind actually does differentiate between a deeply held belief that has empirical evidence and a deeply held belief that does not - rather, the mind will instead conjure up evidence to be able to hold on to such beliefs to a great extent, simply because being forced to come to terms with deeply held beliefs being wrong can be quite traumatic. It's the same way that - again, to my understanding - the brain does not actually differentiate between a memory of something that it actually experienced and a memory that it has been convinced that it experienced but never actually did.

    So the interesting thing is...
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    so your example of the ape suit, doesn't quite fit..
    now if someone later told you that there was a man in a gorilla suit in that place while you were there, this is where belief comes into play..
    whether you saw the ape or not is irrelevant to the 'belief', what if there were no pictures taken and many ppl in the same place..now you ask everyone if they saw an ape..some will say they saw it and some will say they didn't(lets not adress whether they think the ape was real or a man in a costume(which qualifies for my religion vs God arguement))..so where is the 'proof' that the ape was actually there?
    ...that in actuality, it probably fits better than you suspect because they did tell people about the gorilla after the fact and ran the video again to show that it was actually there. The most interesting thing is that there were a selection of people who were so convinced by their own belief that they would notice someone in a gorilla suit that even shown the video again and having it pointed out to them were utterly convinced that it was a different video this time around. Any evidence that it had been there was automatically dismissed as forged or doctored in some way because their model of reality had no room for the possibility that they would fail to see a gorilla in plain sight.

    None of this was about choices made - it was all conclusions drawn from the provided input and their perception of it as shaped by their model of the world around them.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    (from your reply to john)There is no evidence for God therefore it is highly implausible that God exists.
    there is evidence, but most atheist dismiss it because it is subjective.
    There's this region of the planet Mars called Cydonia which houses a somewhat infamous formation of rock that in early photographs ended up looking like it was a rather striking depiction of a humanoid face. You may not be surprised to learn that this face on Mars became rather popular with some staunch believers in alien visitations, even tough NASA and many other experts held fast that it was simply a trick of light.

    Back in my mid teens, a part of my brain that has a rather developed tendency towards innate superstition was completely and utterly convinced that this had to be an artificial structure because the model of the world I had at the time made this the clear and obvious conclusion. Then when my skepticism caught up during my twenties, my model of the world ultimately changed to the point where it no longer had space for things like ghosts, spirits, alien visitations and the like and suddenly that very same rock formation was clearly just a rock formation which coincidentally looked kind of like a face due to a trick of light.

    Conveniently, we now have rather high-resolution imagery of that very same rock formation and can observe that there's nothing face-like about it. The point is that the way we view the world fundamentally alters how we view evidence and subsequently what conclusions we draw, right down to the point where the human mind tends rather strongly towards dismissing anything that does not agree with its model.

    From that, I would be inclined to say that subjective evidence is not evidence at all because once you cross that line, it is belief that shapes evidence, not evidence that shapes belief.

    Edit: actually I'm going to be rude and add something here in hindsight...
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you do not need proof to believe..
    This, if anything, is really the one statement I will agree with because it strikes me as quite clear that belief as a general concept (thus not only related to theism) often happens not only without but actually in spite of evidence. What it really does seem to depend on, to my understanding, is about having a model of reality that is conductive to a certain type of belief - if that belief then takes root, the mind can sometimes go to rather impressive lengths to perpetuate it.

    At the end of the day though, I also maintain that whether or not you have said model has nothing to do with choice.
    Last edited by Kompi; January 9th, 2013 at 02:20 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    In fact, you don't have to look far even in our modern society to find people who cling very tightly to their own convictions in spite of mounting evidence to the contrary - you have people who are in abusive relationships whose minds construct ever more elaborate labyrinths of reasoning just to keep clinging to the conviction that their partner loves them. You have children who go through the same with abusive parents who find ways to blame themselves because they can not comprehend a world where parents indulge in utterly senseless violence. You even have people who are knee-deep in debt yet still find themselves utterly convinced in the belief that they can still afford a new car.

    These are not exceptions - to my understanding, the mind actually does differentiate between a deeply held belief that has empirical evidence and a deeply held belief that does not - rather, the mind will instead conjure up evidence to be able to hold on to such beliefs to a great extent, simply because being forced to come to terms with deeply held beliefs being wrong can be quite traumatic. It's the same way that - again, to my understanding - the brain does not actually differentiate between a memory of something that it actually experienced and a memory that it has been convinced that it experienced but never actually did.
    so why should atheist be the exception?

    So the interesting thing is...

    ...that in actuality, it probably fits better than you suspect because they did tell people about the gorilla after the fact and ran the video again to show that it was actually there. The most interesting thing is that there were a selection of people who were so convinced by their own belief that they would notice someone in a gorilla suit that even shown the video again and having it pointed out to them were utterly convinced that it was a different video this time around. Any evidence that it had been there was automatically dismissed as forged or doctored in some way because their model of reality had no room for the possibility that they would fail to see a gorilla in plain sight.
    i was gonna argue about there not being a video..but you went on to reinforce my point.

    None of this was about choices made - it was all conclusions drawn from the provided input and their perception of it as shaped by their model of the world around them.
    they chose to ignore the video..they chose to ignore ppls testimonies as to the apes presence.
    they chose to NOT believe there was an ape there..
    they chose NOT to challenge their own preconcieved notions as to what is reality and what is not..

    they chose to assign a value to the evidence.
    they chose to not change their model of reality..
    they chose to believe the ape was not there.



    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    (from your reply to john)There is no evidence for God therefore it is highly implausible that God exists.
    there is evidence, but most atheist dismiss it because it is subjective.
    From that, I would be inclined to say that subjective evidence is not evidence at all because once you cross that line, it is belief that shapes evidence, not evidence that shapes belief.
    back to the ape..(btw..this was your analogy we ran with..good pick)

    if the only evidence for the apes existence was testimonies..(no pics,no video..) that would still be evidence.
    so the statement 'subjective evidence is not evidence' is wrong..(if you knew me at all, you would realize how difficult it is for me to use the word 'wrong',(its a defensive word))

    but i do understand one thing..
    its not the use..its the abuse..
    most theist tend to abuse their own testimonies..IOW, they tend to make more of it than it is..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    so why should atheist be the exception?
    Simple - they shouldn't be. This is something that afflicts everyone, and it's not something anyone has a choice about. The best anyone can do is try to be aware, recognise the flaws inherent in very deep-rooted functions such as intuition, memory and perception and try to remove as many subjective factors as possible.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    they chose to ignore the video..they chose to ignore ppls testimonies as to the apes presence.
    they chose to NOT believe there was an ape there..
    they chose NOT to challenge their own preconcieved notions as to what is reality and what is not..

    they chose to assign a value to the evidence.
    they chose to not change their model of reality..
    they chose to believe the ape was not there.
    No, they simply acted in accordance with their model, and it led them to the wrong conclusions. They were not given a choice to accept the evidence because their minds immediately rejected it as impossible, just as their minds disregarded the presence of someone in a gorilla suit because it was unimportant to the task at hand and/or not supposed to be there.

    It is no different from the many people in traffic that fail to notice pedestrians, or bicyclists, or motorbikes or cars with non-working lights - they don't consciously choose to ignore them, they just fail to see them because their minds manage to automatically sort that information out as unimportant before it ever has a chance to reach their consciousness.

    By the same way, some of these people in traffic will determinedly argue that something was not their fault even if it is found that it was because their minds conclude that since they don't remember seeing it, it can not have been there because then they would have seen it.

    The model of the world someone carries is the way it is, and it can only change through the realisation that it no longer works. You can't choose to do that, it's something you have to experience.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    if the only evidence for the apes existence was testimonies..(no pics,no video..) that would still be evidence.
    so the statement 'subjective evidence is not evidence' is wrong..(if you knew me at all, you would realize how difficult it is for me to use the word 'wrong',(its a defensive word)
    The interesting thing here is that if you spend some time studying witness testimonies, probably one of the first things you'll discover is that it is simply one of the most consistently unreliable forms of evidence in existence. There is a wealth of documented evidence where a single memory is constructed from multiple, separate and completely unrelated memories, where people who are convinced they are remembering things correctly are entirely wrong on what actually happened and where people are convinced that they remember experiencing something that they only ever knew about by being told it by someone else.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    they chose to ignore the video..they chose to ignore ppls testimonies as to the apes presence.
    they chose to NOT believe there was an ape there..
    they chose NOT to challenge their own preconcieved notions as to what is reality and what is not..

    they chose to assign a value to the evidence.
    they chose to not change their model of reality..
    they chose to believe the ape was not there.
    No, they simply acted in accordance with their model, and it led them to the wrong conclusions. They were not given a choice to accept the evidence because their minds immediately rejected it as impossible, just as their minds disregarded the presence of someone in a gorilla suit because it was unimportant to the task at hand and/or not supposed to be there.
    now you are starting to get difficult..
    you are saying that our mind makes our choices for us???
    without our control???

    their mind rejected it because they chose to reject it..

    belief is not a state of mind.
    it is a choice.

    it is like someone argueing 'i did not choose to pull the trigger of the gun..my mind did..'
    this is an arguement for not taking responsibility for your own beliefs, for your own thoughts, or for your own actions.(God made me do it..)



    It is no different from the many people in traffic that fail to notice pedestrians, or bicyclists, or motorbikes or cars with non-working lights - they don't consciously choose to ignore them, they just fail to see them because their minds manage to automatically sort that information out as unimportant before it ever has a chance to reach their consciousness.

    By the same way, some of these people in traffic will determinedly argue that something was not their fault even if it is found that it was because their minds conclude that since they don't remember seeing it, it can not have been there because then they would have seen it.
    they made a choice..when they surveyed the scene they chose that the pedestrian was not an important consideration..even though this choice process was imediate(or so fast as to appear immediate)

    now this is starting to head towards subconsious choices..
    it is still a choice even if we are not consciencely aware of making a choice.


    The model of the world someone carries is the way it is, and it can only change through the realisation that it no longer works. You can't choose to do that, it's something you have to experience.
    tell that to the school system..
    this statement is so full of holes,i am not gonna touch it..


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    if the only evidence for the apes existence was testimonies..(no pics,no video..) that would still be evidence.
    so the statement 'subjective evidence is not evidence' is wrong..(if you knew me at all, you would realize how difficult it is for me to use the word 'wrong',(its a defensive word)
    The interesting thing here is that if you spend some time studying witness testimonies, probably one of the first things you'll discover is that it is simply one of the most consistently unreliable forms of evidence in existence. There is a wealth of documented evidence where a single memory is constructed from multiple, separate and completely unrelated memories, where people who are convinced they are remembering things correctly are entirely wrong on what actually happened and where people are convinced that they remember experiencing something that they only ever knew about by being told it by someone else.
    true.
    which is were discretion comes into play..
    and my statement about sorting through our own humanity.
    we are not discussing a court case here..
    there is not gonna be a day when the world announces either there is or there isnt a God.


    another thought..
    I am 100% sure that you have had someone in your life come to you and posit a situation similar to our ape analogy, and i am certain you believed them without empirical proof.

    you chose to believe your friend..
    (pry cause you know them well enough not to doubt them)

    it is the same thing with God.
    you either choose to believe in him, or you don't..everything else is justification and rationalization.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    now you are starting to get difficult..
    you are saying that our mind makes our choices for us???
    without our control???

    their mind rejected it because they chose to reject it..

    belief is not a state of mind.
    it is a choice.
    And so you reject the proposition as entirely impossible because it does not agree with the view you have of reality.

    Trust me, I very much wish belief in general was a choice. Unfortunately, biology is not that kind. Equally unfortunately, coming to that realisation can be a very painful thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    they made a choice..when they surveyed the scene they chose that the pedestrian was not an important consideration..even though this choice process was imediate(or so fast as to appear immediate)

    now this is starting to head towards subconsious choices..
    it is still a choice even if we are not consciencely aware of making a choice.
    If I am understanding you correctly, you are basically suggesting that you can make decisions whether or not to perceive things that you never actually perceived? That you can make a decision to take notice of things that never actually reached your higher cognitive processes to begin with?


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    The model of the world someone carries is the way it is, and it can only change through the realisation that it no longer works. You can't choose to do that, it's something you have to experience.
    tell that to the school system..
    this statement is so full of holes,i am not gonna touch it..
    What then, pray tell, are these holes?

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    another thought..
    I am 100% sure that you have had someone in your life come to you and posit a situation similar to our ape analogy, and i am certain you believed them without empirical proof.

    you chose to believe your friend..
    (pry cause you know them well enough not to doubt them)

    it is the same thing with God.
    you either choose to believe in him, or you don't..everything else is justification and rationalization.
    While I am not in this thread to argue as to the existence of higher powers - despite your seeming desire to do so - I have to note that this argument strikes me as somewhat disingenuous. After all, this suggests that you feel the best way to come to contact with God is to stop judging statements for yourself and just accept what someone else tells you. Surely in a context of science, you would be better left with an argument that says that critical thinking - rather than its absence - would be the virtue to embrace?
    Your intuition can deceive you - don't trust it.
     

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    Squirrel, have you any idea how much and how often people rely on their basic programming rather than conscious higher thought? Yes, their own mind rejects stuff. Heavily. Talk to a Mormon about reality sometime. Their own minds most definitely reject it. They cannot handle it, they are not consciously aware of it- they just cover their ears and eyes and say "la la la."
    Last edited by Neverfly; January 9th, 2013 at 07:24 PM. Reason: cover is supposed to have a "c" in it...stupid typos, I hate salt.
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    < RANT WARNING!>


    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    And so you reject the proposition as entirely impossible because it does not agree with the view you have of reality.
    wow..you really like to change the meaning of what i say entirely..

    If I am understanding you correctly, you are basically suggesting that you can make decisions whether or not to perceive things that you never actually perceived? That you can make a decision to take notice of things that never actually reached your higher cognitive processes to begin with?
    it seems to me you are argueing with predjudice..
    you are a smart guy..why do you twist my meaning so?

    didnt say you have a choice as to what you percieve..
    i say you have a choice in what you believe.


    While I am not in this thread to argue as to the existence of higher powers - despite your seeming desire to do so -
    again your twisting my words..
    and your predjudice is showing..
    my arguements have not been to prove existence or not.
    i have stated on several occasions that i do not care whether you believe or not.
    and i have avoided the exist/not exist arguements..

    i am arguing about belief being a choice.
    I am arguing the exist/nonexistence debate/question is erroneous.
    i am argueing TAKE RESPONSIBILITY for your own beliefs.
    (jeeso..doesnt that statement usually come from an atheist?)


    I have to note that this argument strikes me as somewhat disingenuous.
    pot calling the kettle black?
    your the one who likes to twist my words.

    After all, this suggests that you feel the best way to come to contact with God is to stop judging statements for yourself and just accept what someone else tells you.
    i take it back..you aint that smart.
    that is not what i said at all.
    talk about disingenuous.


    surely in a context of science, you would be better left with an argument that says that critical thinking - rather than its absence - would be the virtue to embrace?
    does anyone else see a lack of critical thinking in my posts?


    kompi..
    if you cant understand what it is i am trying to explain, then maybe you should just remain silent.
    you are digging a hole for yourself, (pry cause of your attitude against God/believers/religion) that is causing you to say things that make you look incompetent.

    now you have a choice to make..
    either debate me without the predjudice and attitude, so maybe one or both of us can learn something..
    or just give up..

    but dont put words into my mouth, or twist what i am trying to say to make yourself sound smarter than you are.



    <done ranting>
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    didnt say you have a choice as to what you percieve..
    i say you have a choice in what you believe.
    And yet you said:
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    they made a choice..when they surveyed the scene they chose that the pedestrian was not an important consideration..even though this choice process was imediate(or so fast as to appear immediate)
    Now it seems to me that this either suggests that you feel people have a choice in what they perceive, or that you feel perception is belief. They could not both have chosen to sort it away and not had a choice in not perceiving it.

    And for...
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    does anyone else see a lack of critical thinking in my posts?
    ...we have...
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    I am 100% sure that you have had someone in your life come to you and posit a situation similar to our ape analogy, and i am certain you believed them without empirical proof.

    you chose to believe your friend.. (...) it is the same thing with God.
    This is the particular bit I mentioned, not the entirety of your post. To me it sounds like you are suggesting one should believe some things, or some people, without question, which is why I stated that I felt it expressed one should embrace a lack of critical thinking by leaving the option for doubt at the door.

    So here's a question then - if belief is such a free choice, what about the people who truly want to believe something but find themselves unable to? Or the people who really want to stop believing in something but they cannot? If we have a choice over what to believe or not, how come our beliefs are so easily manipulated?
    Your intuition can deceive you - don't trust it.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    does anyone else see a lack of critical thinking in my posts?
    Sometimes, yes.

    You're arguing this position in support of an unsupported belief. In order to do this, you must rationalize and justify your thoughts and arguments for that belief, at the expense of critical thinking. It's just the way it is.

    You cannot support the existence of fairies and do it with critical thinking. It simply cannot be done.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    didnt say you have a choice as to what you percieve..
    i say you have a choice in what you believe.
    And yet you said:
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    they made a choice..when they surveyed the scene they chose that the pedestrian was not an important consideration..even though this choice process was imediate(or so fast as to appear immediate)
    Now it seems to me that this either suggests that you feel people have a choice in what they perceive, or that you feel perception is belief. They could not both have chosen to sort it away and not had a choice in not perceiving it.
    no.
    'they chose that the pedestrian was not important'
    does not equal 'they chose not to see the pedestrian'

    the way i phrased it acknowledges the presence of the pedestrian but choose not to value the pedestrian as worthy of further thought.
    It has nothing to do with perception being a choice, but what the person does with that perception.

    the choice wasn't in the perception but in the application of what they do with that perception.

    in no way did i ever speak of perception.

    this is what my rant was about. you added to what i was saying and changed it.this was your bad..not mine.


    And for...
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    does anyone else see a lack of critical thinking in my posts?
    ...we have...
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    I am 100% sure that you have had someone in your life come to you and posit a situation similar to our ape analogy, and i am certain you believed them without empirical proof.

    you chose to believe your friend.. (...) it is the same thing with God.
    This is the particular bit I mentioned, not the entirety of your post. To me it sounds like you are suggesting one should believe some things, or some people, without question, which is why I stated that I felt it expressed one should embrace a lack of critical thinking by leaving the option for doubt at the door.
    fair enough then..
    but do you? (trust certain ppl without question?)
    Notice i said 'certain' not 'everyone' or 'anyone'

    but that still seems like quite a stretch from what i said to what you said.
    and i have always stated 'question everything'.(dunno if i have actually posted that here yet..but i know i have said it before)




    So here's a question then - if belief is such a free choice, what about the people who truly want to believe something but find themselves unable to? Or the people who really want to stop believing in something but they cannot? If we have a choice over what to believe or not,
    1,example please (sounds like you are reaching again)
    2,you have already answered that:

    IE:In fact, you don't have to look far even in our modern society to find people who cling very tightly to their own convictions in spite of mounting evidence to the contrary - you have people who are in abusive relationships whose minds construct ever more elaborate labyrinths of reasoning just to keep clinging to the conviction that their partner loves them. You have children who go through the same with abusive parents who find ways to blame themselves because they can not comprehend a world where parents indulge in utterly senseless violence. You even have people who are knee-deep in debt yet still find themselves utterly convinced in the belief that they can still afford a new car.
    i interpret it as stubborness..


    how come our beliefs are so easily manipulated?
    because most ppl want others to tell them what they believe and do not want to think for themselves.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    does anyone else see a lack of critical thinking in my posts?
    Sometimes, yes.

    You're arguing this position in support of an unsupported belief. In order to do this, you must rationalize and justify your thoughts and arguments for that belief, at the expense of critical thinking. It's just the way it is.

    You cannot support the existence of fairies and do it with critical thinking. It simply cannot be done.
    again(this is getting old..)..i am not arguing whether god exists or not..
    i am not arguing for anyone to 'believe in God'...

    we are discussing the concept of belief.
    of whether it is a choice or not.

    you can admit that it is a choice and still not believe in God..
    admiting it as a choice does not mean you believe in God.
    (entertain a thought without accepting it..?)

    damn..if i was smart i would create a sock puppet and say the same exact things i am saying now..but tell everyone i am an atheist..then at least ppl wouldnt bring their anti-god attitude to the discussion..or at least they would not assume everything i talk about is an exercise to convince everyone that God exists..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    does anyone else see a lack of critical thinking in my posts?
    Sometimes, yes.

    You're arguing this position in support of an unsupported belief. In order to do this, you must rationalize and justify your thoughts and arguments for that belief, at the expense of critical thinking. It's just the way it is.

    You cannot support the existence of fairies and do it with critical thinking. It simply cannot be done.
    again(this is getting old..)..i am not arguing whether god exists or not..
    i am not arguing for anyone to 'believe in God'...

    we are discussing the concept of belief.
    of whether it is a choice or not.

    you can admit that it is a choice and still not believe in God..
    admiting it as a choice does not mean you believe in God.
    (entertain a thought without accepting it..?)

    damn..if i was smart i would create a sock puppet and say the same exact things i am saying now..but tell everyone i am an atheist..then at least ppl wouldnt bring their anti-god attitude to the discussion..or at least they would not assume everything i talk about is an exercise to convince everyone that God exists..
    The sock atheist bit wouldn't help- It is your wording that gets the reaction.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    the way i phrased it acknowledges the presence of the pedestrian but choose not to value the pedestrian as worthy of further thought.
    It has nothing to do with perception being a choice, but what the person does with that perception.

    the choice wasn't in the perception but in the application of what they do with that perception.
    That's still circular though, because it suggests someone making a value judgment on a perception to sort away a part of that perception before that perception enters the conscious mind to make that judgment.




    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    fair enough then..
    but do you? (trust certain ppl without question?)
    Notice i said 'certain' not 'everyone' or 'anyone'
    No, I don't. You don't have to look far to find quite extensive studies showing how dubiously unreliable the human mind is in terms of pretty much everything, so every perspective has to be acknowledged as their perspective with the implicit understanding their perspective may be flawed in any number of ways. The human mind can not even be trusted to accurately express why it took certain actions, did certain choices or came to certain conclusions, so I always try to listen to people with this in mind, even those whom I trust not to be intentionally deceiving me.

    Of course, it goes without saying that since these are human flaws, they apply to myself as well, and while it is significantly harder to apply that same level of standard to yourself, I try not to even trust myself implicitly, as contradictive as that sounds.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i interpret it as stubborness..
    I expected as much. Don't get me wrong, I actually do hope you will never have cause to revise that interpretation.
    Your intuition can deceive you - don't trust it.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    the way i phrased it acknowledges the presence of the pedestrian but choose not to value the pedestrian as worthy of further thought.
    It has nothing to do with perception being a choice, but what the person does with that perception.

    the choice wasn't in the perception but in the application of what they do with that perception.
    That's still circular though, because it suggests someone making a value judgment on a perception to sort away a part of that perception before that perception enters the conscious mind to make that judgment.
    and?
    so?
    ?



    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    but do you? (trust certain ppl without question?)
    No, I don't.
    really? no-one?
    how sad..everyone needs someone..


    Of course, it goes without saying that since these are human flaws, they apply to myself as well, and while it is significantly harder to apply that same level of standard to yourself, I try not to even trust myself implicitly, as contradictive as that sounds.
    i wanna argue with you..
    but i know this to be true..
    (not you..me also)
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    The sock atheist bit wouldn't help- It is your wording that gets the reaction.
    ok..fine..be that way...

    yea...i have admited before that i dont always explain myself clearly..

    but there is a predjudice involved..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Misconceptions:

    1. No theist believes there's a chance God might not exist

    2. All theists only believe a god exists
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    but there is a predjudice involved..
    Yes, but we forgive you.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    yea...i have admited before that i dont always explain myself clearly..
    No at all, you are very clear. I even see the puppet right away, and it was funny
    But really you are very coherent, because the main misconception from Atheist is that to (not)believe(in god) make them automatically rational.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    but there is a predjudice involved..
    Two in fact. Let's send them back to back again:

    Rational(2) people know(1) that God does not exist. They also know that the word:God exist, and that many peoples (like a big majority of them) use it in a trillion mix of personal and standardized (by a standardization committee called religion/cult) ways.

    1:
    It is known by observation. See ? (I am kidding )
    It is known by choosing. The choice(3) is what in mathematics is called an axiom. The axiom is to use observable reality (observable by absolutely everybody, and reproducible by absolutely everybody, absolutely every time, until the end of it (and the start of it)).
    God does not fit this definition, it does not exist. The concept/word God on the other hand, is very experimental, there are entire thread which should be devoted to it (in history/social science). This thread is different...


    2:
    This decision to be rational has the same purpose has to be irrational, but fine tuned and extended. Many people may accept random ideas, and choose to beleif some because it will bring them REAL life help, method/tool, recipe, explanation, that will make them fell good (you can measure belief in the blood (hormone stress-level)). It is a successful meme enough to have make it to our gene.
    Rationality is the same thing, but extended with a new contract(axiom): being share-able between everybody (that does not at all imply peace) and often with a mathematical language (to reduce miss-interpretation problem to ZERO)
    The hope of this new rational belief/contract/axiom is to open new knowledge domain. Sadly (? or not) it often start by debunking previous knowledge. Is it more plausible that a hundred or so divinities are borned the 25 decembers, or that the sun starts again its course toward warm and abundance ? You choose. Both work, and work also for the animal and the plants (of the north hemisphere).
    That is another Atheist misconception, to believe that nothing special happens on 25'th december, or on easter...

    3:
    I hope that by now both camp here has realized that BOTH position are question of choice. But like "God", "free will" does not exist. Only the word and the notion. Nobody will believe in God, or in free will, if it had not heard/learned of it before.
    So I happen to believe in something very nearly irrational (see paradox): I believe that one should believe in the fewest things possible, and it is not my idea, it is called science.
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    Most of the atheists I have met in person have intelligence complexes. This is just within my circle of friends, but many of them believe themselves to be exponentially more intelligent than others because of their lack of belief in deities.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by shlunka View Post
    Most of the atheists I have met in person have intelligence complexes. This is just within my circle of friends, but many of them believe themselves to be exponentially more intelligent than others because of their lack of belief in deities.
    That's pretty absurd, really. The correlation between intelligence and a propensity to believe is surprisingly slight. Many highly intelligent people believe in a higher power and it in no way detracts from their intellectual accomplishments.

    Now, I do agree that questioning belief is an intelligent act. But it's not a highly intelligent act, anymore than doing ones math homework is. Anyone can do it.
    It's just a matter of who chooses to do so and who chooses not to do so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    3:
    I hope that by now both camp here has realized that BOTH position are question of choice. But like "God", "free will" does not exist. Only the word and the notion. Nobody will believe in God, or in free will, if it had not heard/learned of it before.
    So I happen to believe in something very nearly irrational (see paradox): I believe that one should believe in the fewest things possible, and it is not my idea, it is called science.
    i would argue for free will..but thats another thread...

    cool post.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Kompi..
    one final thing..(i think im argued out on this..for now..)

    i just looked up Belief on wiki..

    one interesting section:


    -------------
    Philosopher Lynne Rudder Baker has outlined four main contemporary approaches to belief in her controversial book Saving Belief:[6]
    • Our common-sense understanding of belief is correct - Sometimes called the "mental sentence theory," in this conception, beliefs exist as coherent entities, and the way we talk about them in everyday life is a valid basis for scientific endeavour. Jerry Fodor is one of the principal defenders of this point of view.
    • Our common-sense understanding of belief may not be entirely correct, but it is close enough to make some useful predictions - This view argues that we will eventually reject the idea of belief as we use it now, but that there may be a correlation between what we take to be a belief when someone says "I believe that snow is white" and how a future theory of psychology will explain this behaviour. Most notably, philosopher Stephen Stich has argued for this particular understanding of belief.
    • Our common-sense understanding of belief is entirely wrong and will be completely superseded by a radically different theory that will have no use for the concept of belief as we know it - Known as eliminativism, this view, (most notably proposed by Paul and Patricia Churchland), argues that the concept of belief is like obsolete theories of times past such as the four humours theory of medicine, or the phlogiston theory of combustion. In these cases science hasn't provided us with a more detailed account of these theories, but completely rejected them as valid scientific concepts to be replaced by entirely different accounts. The Churchlands argue that our common-sense concept of belief is similar in that as we discover more about neuroscience and the brain, the inevitable conclusion will be to reject the belief hypothesis in its entirety.
    • Our common-sense understanding of belief is entirely wrong; however, treating people, animals, and even computers as if they had beliefs is often a successful strategy - The major proponents of this view, Daniel Dennett and Lynne Rudder Baker, are both eliminativists in that they hold that beliefs are not a scientifically valid concept, but they don't go as far as rejecting the concept of belief as a predictive device. Dennett gives the example of playing a computer at chess. While few people would agree that the computer held beliefs, treating the computer as if it did (e.g. that the computer believes that taking the opposition's queen will give it a considerable advantage) is likely to be a successful and predictive strategy. In this understanding of belief, named by Dennett the intentional stance, belief-based explanations of mind and behaviour are at a different level of explanation and are not reducible to those based on fundamental neuroscience, ---although both may be explanatory at their own level.
    -----------


    and i did catch a short little question towards the end of that page..

    Is belief voluntary?

    which just tells me, we are thinking ahead of the curve..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Kompi..
    one final thing..(i think im argued out on this..for now..)

    i just looked up Belief on wiki..

    one interesting section:

    (...)

    and i did catch a short little question towards the end of that page..

    Is belief voluntary?

    which just tells me, we are thinking ahead of the curve..
    To be honest, I think the question itself is actually rather old - as far as I'm aware, it's the kind of thing that people have been pondering since the beginnings of philosophy or even earlier. In modern day times we have gained an expanded toolbox in various brain scanning equipment to help us along, but even then our view into our own brain is at best very crude compared to its sheer complexity. Still, there are some very interesting data coming out of some studies suggesting we may eventually have to give up a whole lot of our common sense ideas about how our minds work.

    When it comes to whether belief is voluntary or not, I definitely do not claim to know for certain - my own experience thus far quite heavily leans towards not simply because I can not recall ever being able to just decide to believe differently than I did up until that point. In fact, in my experience my own beliefs have several times run contrary to what I might have wanted to believe, or even what logical reasoning told me I should believe; and while I can attempt to indirectly influence what I believe by either consciously attempting to avoid or force a confrontation that may require my belief to change, it is by no means guaranteed to work and in some situations can take increasingly heroic amounts of willpower to even attempt.

    Part of the problem is that belief informs perception and thereby tends towards perpetuating itself by making you see clear evidence for the belief where someone without said belief might not, just as it can make you fail to see any evidence against to prevent cognitive dissonance. It's really quite fascinating just how radically our view and understanding of the world can change just through the mechanism of belief.

    And bear in mind, I do not simply mean theistic belief - I mean belief period. Regardless of it whether it is a belief in a God or a belief that your pet dog has human intelligence or a belief that breaking a mirror causes extreme bad luck or a belief that a spouse is cheating on you or whatever, it still seems to me that they follow the basic premise of human belief with both the good and the bad. To me, this is fascinating phenomenon.

    Of course, bear in mind too, I fully admit that I may be a very exceptional individual and it may just be me that have this experience, just as it could be that my own perception of my experience may be completely wrong and it's just my subconscious playing a rather cruel joke on me - I don't expect those cases to be true, but they may be. What I can say for certain is that if there are people who find it very easy to change their belief simply by willing it to change, then I greatly envy them.

    Anyway, this has been a rather long digression, so I do apologise for that
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    Quote Originally Posted by shlunka View Post
    Most of the atheists I have met in person have intelligence complexes. This is just within my circle of friends, but many of them believe themselves to be exponentially more intelligent than others because of their lack of belief in deities.
    Sounds like your circle of friends is full of jerks.

    Some of the most paradigm-shifting ideas have come from people of faith.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Some of the most paradigm-shifting ideas have come from people of faith.
    And most of the best music. (One of the main reasons why getting rid of religion would be a really bad idea.)
    Without wishing to overstate my case, everything in the observable universe definitely has its origins in Northamptonshire -- Alan Moore
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Some of the most paradigm-shifting ideas have come from people of faith.
    And most of the best music. (One of the main reasons why getting rid of religion would be a really bad idea.)
    While we're adding to the pile, how about some really quite amazing and/or truly beautiful old buildings?
    Your intuition can deceive you - don't trust it.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    That's pretty absurd, really. The correlation between intelligence and a propensity to believe is surprisingly slight.
    Not really, the few studies which have looked at the issue show a moderate correlation about 0.6 and average difference of about half a standard deviation of IQ. (e.g., ScienceDirect.com - Intelligence - Average intelligence predicts atheism rates across 137 nations)

    Many highly intelligent people believe in a higher power and it in no way detracts from their intellectual accomplishments.
    Yes that is true. Like most any bias with an element of truth, it's pure folly to assume individuals represent that average--even if its yourself. Pope John Paul II, was with little doubt a high grade genius, while there are people with severe mental disabilities that are atheist.
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    Lynx, is the correlation between intelligence and education? I would think more educated people are more likely to reject superstition.

    Either way, that study you posted seems to show a slight difference- which is what I said.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalster
    Many atheists automatically assume a theist to be irrational
    This is not a view or opinion that is incorrect due to it being based on faulty thinking or understanding.
    Not given that the theist accepts a thing exists or is true, especially without any proof.
    Which is clearly irrational and delusional. So not a misconception.

    As for intelligence, there are many intelligent theists, that should go without saying.

    However due to their irrationallity and delusion, would it be wise to take them too seriously.
    Delusion is afterall a medical condiction the Stedman's Medical Dictionary has it down as, a false belief or wrong judgment, sometimes associated with hallucinations, held with conviction despite evidence to the contrary. Stedman's Online | Home Stedman’s Medical Dictionary 28th Edition, Copyright© 2006_Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. All rights reserved.
    And the Dorland's has it as an idiosyncratic false belief that is firmly maintained in spite of incontrovertible and obvious proof or evidence to the contrary. Dorland's Medical Dictionary for Health Consumers.

    Kind of sits very well with belief. If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide, yet still holds a belief in a deity, then that person is delusional, if the person doesn't, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts. So to be intelligent and still be a believer is wholly irrational.

    So sir you cannot say an irrational belief is a misconception, it is there for all to see, that it is not.
    Last edited by pavlos; January 12th, 2013 at 03:29 PM. Reason: mis-spelling
    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    <img src="http://i263.photobucket.com/
    triple_facepalm_by_spottedheart98464-d3kuyp3.jpg Explain why a post needs a facepalm, else you triple fail.

    Your's fails as you haven't explained why my post deserves a facepalm.
    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Explain why a post needs a facepalm, else you triple fail.
    Because you essentially said that everyone of faith suffers from a medical condition. That's a pretty silly thing to suggest.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Explain why a post needs a facepalm, else you triple fail.
    Because you essentially said that everyone of faith suffers from a medical condition. That's a pretty silly thing to suggest.
    I didn't read it that way.
    Look, is the topic always going to be politically correct?

    Belief in superstition and the divine is irrational and lacks critical thinking. It doesn't mean the individual lacks rationality, but it does mean they have a propensity toward not using critical thinking.

    This does not separate the religious from the atheists. The atheist simply employed critical thinking on that subject alone, but can be very deluded and irrational on other issues and topics, such as personal affairs, self awareness or politics.

    All of it can be categorized as medical as all of it deals with the brain.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Belief in superstition and the divine is irrational and lacks critical thinking.
    says you..

    It doesn't mean the individual lacks rationality, but it does mean they have a propensity toward not using critical thinking.
    an excuse..
    and made of straw..

    This does not separate the religious from the atheists.
    true.

    The atheist simply employed critical thinking on that subject alone,
    that statement can fall with a sneeze..


    but can be very deluded and irrational on other issues and topics, such as personal affairs, self awareness or politics.
    on topics of God, atheist are most irrational and deluded..always condeming everyone and everything associated with religion or God, whether they deserve it or not..

    All of it can be categorized as medical as all of it deals with the brain.
    All of it can be categorized as an excuse as all of it deals with your self worth.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    says you..
    Yes, absolutely.
    Don't take it personal, Squirrel, you know well just how irrational this little atheist can get.
    But the thing is, belief in the divine is not rational.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    and made of straw..
    Not at all. History shows how irrationality is not exactly a boon.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    on topics of God, atheist are most irrational and deluded..always condeming everyone and everything associated with religion or God, whether they deserve it or not..
    I've seen this. I've also seen that the religious are equally irrational on this topic.
    But to point out the dangers and flaws in the love of religion is not condemning everyone or being a jerk, either.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    I've seen this. I've also seen that the religious are equally irrational on this topic.
    But to point out the dangers and flaws in the love of religion is not condemning everyone or being a jerk, either.
    its at this point that the line between atheist and theist disappears...


    were all human..

    i do see most theists irrationality, when it comes to doing as they are told ,without thinking it through..and using the bible to try and invalidate science..(come on..talk about reaching..)
    Neverfly likes this.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    I've seen this. I've also seen that the religious are equally irrational on this topic.
    But to point out the dangers and flaws in the love of religion is not condemning everyone or being a jerk, either.
    its at this point that the line between atheist and theist disappears...


    were all human..

    i do see most theists irrationality, when it comes to doing as they are told ,without thinking it through..and using the bible to try and invalidate science..(come on..talk about reaching..)
    Exactly.
    Pavlos was not far off, but the mistake Pavlos made was in pointing out the medical as if it's a clinical condition. If it was, it's one all humans are affected by, not just the religious.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Pavlos was not far off, but the mistake Pavlos made was in pointing out the medical as if it's a clinical condition. If it was, it's one all humans are affected by, not just the religious.
    i am thinking pavlos dogs and how he must have gotten that idea attending church..(hehe..look at all the ppl..'please stand'...'please sit'..)
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Explain why a post needs a facepalm, else you triple fail.
    Because you essentially said that everyone of faith suffers from a medical condition. That's a pretty silly thing to suggest.
    Ah but I didn't What I said was "If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide, yet still holds a belief in a deity, then that person is delusional, if the person doesn't, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.

    Yet perhaps you could help me, Why do you consider they are not delusional?

    How would you define the difference between a man who believes he speaks and hears god and a man who just talks and hears voices?
    In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god real? if you can't demonstrate it is real then your only course of action is to see it as a delusion.

    As such if a person can define the difference and yet still believes, then said person is acting irrational, is he not.
    Last edited by pavlos; January 13th, 2013 at 02:44 PM. Reason: mis-spelling
    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    I've seen this. I've also seen that the religious are equally irrational on this topic.
    But to point out the dangers and flaws in the love of religion is not condemning everyone or being a jerk, either.
    its at this point that the line between atheist and theist disappears...


    were all human..

    i do see most theists irrationality, when it comes to doing as they are told ,without thinking it through..and using the bible to try and invalidate science..(come on..talk about reaching..)
    Exactly.
    Pavlos was not far off, but the mistake Pavlos made was in pointing out the medical as if it's a clinical condition. If it was, it's one all humans are affected by, not just the religious.
    Agreed. However, Just because a person has a delusion does not mean they are ill to a point of medication and treatment, no more than acne, being a skin infection, requires medication and treatment. When acne reaches a point that it interfere's with a person's health and well being...and that does happen....would such be needed. Below a minimal level, extraordinary measures to eliminate acne would do more harm than good.

    But to not treat acne as a skin infection, but to treat it as society treats religion...as a good...is the equivalent of rubbing your kids faces with rancid grease filled with Propionibacterium, hoping for acne to develop and flourish.


    Symptoms of Delusional disorder
    :

    If a person expresses an idea or belief with unusual persistence or force.

    I.E. even though there is evidence to the contrary, or that the idea appears to exert an undue influence on the person's life, and the way of life is often altered to an inexplicable extent.

    And there is often a quality of secretiveness or suspicion when the person is questioned about it or the person tends to be humourless and over-sensitive, especially about the belief.

    And any attempt to contradict the belief is likely to arouse an inappropriately strong emotional reaction, often with irritability and hostility.

    And it is becomes even worse if the person is over-invested in the idea and it overwhelms other elements of their psyche?

    If a person expresses any of the above traits be they religious or not that person is delusional.

    Delusional disorder - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    symptoms of delusion - Google Search
    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Yet perhaps you could help me, Why do you consider they are not delusional?
    Because I am not qualified to diagnose 80% of the world's population as delusional. If a person is willing to make the leap of faith required to accept God, that is fine. If a person thinks they ARE God, well, I might move an extra seat away from them on the train.

    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    How would you define the difference between a man who believes he speaks and hears god and a man who just talks and hears voices?
    In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god real? if you can't demonstrate it is real then your only course of action is to see it as a delusion.

    As such if a person cannot define the difference and yet still believes, then said person is acting irrational, is he not.
    Again, you're talking about someone hearing God. I know people of faith who do not claim to have spoken to, or to have been spoken to by, God. There is a big difference. You're choosing to paint people of faith with an extreme generalization of what I might call a religious fanatic. That's like saying that everyone who believes there is life outside our planet is comparable to people who claim to have been abducted.

    You're being highly irrational with your comments. They seem to suggest that you have some kind of personal issue with people of faith. I would suggest you put your emotions aside and abandon whatever is driving you to consider these people somehow beneath you.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
     

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    It's a matter of scale. Just how deluded a boy are ya?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    How would you define the difference between a man who believes he speaks and hears god and a man who just talks and hears voices?
    In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god real? if you can't demonstrate it is real then your only course of action is to see it as a delusion.

    As such if a person cannot define the difference and yet still believes, then said person is acting irrational, is he not.
    Again, you're talking about someone hearing God. I know people of faith who do not claim to have spoken to, or to have been spoken to by, God. There is a big difference. You're choosing to paint people of faith with an extreme generalization
    How is it a generalization, have people stopped praying/ stopped worshiping?

    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    You're being highly irrational with your comments. They seem to suggest that you have some kind of personal issue with people of faith. I would suggest you put your emotions aside and abandon whatever is driving you to consider these people somehow beneath you.
    Having a pop at me doesn't help you argument, humanist/atheist don't fly planes into buildings, or bomb abortion clinics, or burn children for witchcraft.
    I am just wary of irrational people be they religious or not, it is just there seems to be a lot of the former.
    Being that the world is four fifths religious.

    And yes I can be guilty of irrationality on occasion, but I don't live my life that way.
    Last edited by pavlos; January 12th, 2013 at 07:11 PM. Reason: addendum
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    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    Flick, you're making strong points against bigotry, but I think it requires ignoring the overwhelming evidence that;
    -Prayer
    -Belief in a higher being that directly influences our lives
    -Belief in a Holy Scripture that dictates how to live and was inspired by the higher being
    -Belief in everlasting reward or punishment
    -Belief that one must believe in or worship the same and if not- must be saved
    all are the basic tenets of most major religions and all are delusional and are a widespread delusion that directly affects how people treat and perceive eachother.

    Pointing out that a generalization generalizes may well be politically correct but it does not alter the basics of the religion.
    Most certainly there are a few that do not behave as the common religious person. But a minority doesn't set the standard, does it?
     

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    Look, I get what you guys are saying. The reason I am not religious is because there is not a logical reason for me to spend time participating in theological activities in my opinion.

    What I am saying is that you should be careful about calling the majority of the world deluded or diagnosing them with a medical mental condition. I don't see the logic in worship, but I also don't see the logic in calling people deluded. It does nothing to further your argument either.

    If you want to show me that these people are deluded, you first have to demonstrate to me that God does not exist. If a religious person wanted to prove to me that you were going to hell for not believing in God, they would have to demonstrate that God does exist. Since neither is possible, either argument is just silly to me.

    And, yet again, I'm a little disgusted to see religion painted as the ideology behind horrible atrocities. Trust me, if there were no religion, people would still commit horrible acts upon one another.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
     

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    This is true. But I would also point out that we're more forgiving or accepting of the religious delusion because it's so common.

    But we look askance at someone like Sylvia Brown, who claims to have seen fairies in Ireland and we think she's either a crazy loon, scamming people for money- or both.
    Yet, that's exactly what religion does and we're more patient.
     

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    I don't know what people you're talking about, but I can't speak for them. I can only speak about my own opinions.

    Personally, I offer no special preference to people based upon their religious belief. If you're talking about the way the public reacts, I can't really comment as I don't have any real statistics on that.

    The way you're phrasing things is still catching me a little. I'm not sure what you mean when you suggest that we're more forgiving of the religion delusion than of other kinds of mental disorders.

    You also blanket religion as a money scam. Do people use religion to make money? Of course. Does that inherently mean that all people who are religious are stupid and delusional? I don't think so.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    I don't know what people you're talking about, but I can't speak for them. I can only speak about my own opinions.

    Personally, I offer no special preference to people based upon their religious belief. If you're talking about the way the public reacts, I can't really comment as I don't have any real statistics on that.

    The way you're phrasing things is still catching me a little. I'm not sure what you mean when you suggest that we're more forgiving of the religion delusion than of other kinds of mental disorders.

    You also blanket religion as a money scam. Do people use religion to make money? Of course. Does that inherently mean that all people who are religious are stupid and delusional? I don't think so.
    This entire post, again, strikes me as avoiding the large majority by pointing out that one cannot say that all of that group are like that.
    The thing is, it's human nature. Religion is only an enabler. But even an enabler can be controlled.

    Flick, you're dancing around it, really. If you prefer not to comment, then don't. It's very well established that major religions do follow these trends as a whole. You cannot deny it anymore than you can deny evolution because not all fossils have been found, or you cannot speak for the dead, or because we haven't seen 100% proof of it.
    The evidence is still staggeringly massive.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Ah but I didn't What I said was "If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide, yet still holds a belief in a deity, then that person is delusional, if the person doesn't, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.
    ok..lets break that down..

    "If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide.."
    1, assumes a consistancy in that knowledge.
    2,asssumes a 'one size fits all' answer..
    3, assumes the person knows which questions to ask.

    i am assuming you are including handicap and those with difficulty holding on to knowledge..

    "Yet still hold a belief in a deity"
    1, assumes that you alone 'know' the truth.
    2, assumes holding a belief is a bad thing..
    3, assumes it is ok to hate a particular group of ppl.

    "then that person is delusional."
    1, are you a doctor?
    2, do you have the cure?
    3, are you out to help these ppl?
    4, or just looking to spread some Anti-Theist semetism..(sp?)


    "How would you define the difference between a man who believes he speaks and hears god and a man who just talks and hears voices?"

    1, assumes you understand what the person means by 'hears' God.
    2, what do you mean 'speaks'? speaks to God or speaks for God? (why would you assume he speaks For God??)
    3 , have you ever experienced this?
    4, so then why you bitchin about it?


    "In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god real?"
    Its not my job to tell you what to believe.
    you gotta figure that out for yourself.


    "if you can't demonstrate it is real then your only course of action is to see it as a delusion."
    no..the only course of action is to realize that it is only a belief and not a Fact.
    (something else both sides have misconceptions about.)

    "As such if a person cannot define the difference and yet still believes, then said person is acting irrational, is he not."

    so, if he is not einstein, then he is acting irrational?
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Symptoms of Delusional disorder:

    If a person expresses an idea or belief with unusual persistence or force.
    Again, that make you a very delusional person, while you will keep on saying that 80% of people are delusional, like Flick Montana has said before.

    This type of irrationality is unavoidable in a debate between supposed "camp" that hold to a greater truth/recipe to success, because they need irrationality to fill their agenda (making a lot of money or fill book/thread with non sense)

    Rational people discuss about rational thing, like how belief/meme work and why most Atheist are so irrational, which is in line with the OP, and has nothing to do with politely correctness (whichever religion that deity belongs to)
    That's because most theist are also irrational, because both group are composed entirely of humans. It is also very human to climb on board of a supposedly wining argument, when the "win" is rationally proved even if not very significantly (see post #42)
    So another misconception for Atheist is to believe they are good scientist (or rational). I know a bunch of Atheist witch are just that because they want to believe in the next -thing, which for sure imply as much bigotery and parroting that the one before. The human brain is like that.

    The most rational position is called agnosticism, to which I made a sacrifice every day, just to be sure to be on the good side of it
    Next post tomorrow
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Some of the most paradigm-shifting ideas have come from people of faith.
    And most of the best music. (One of the main reasons why getting rid of religion would be a really bad idea.)
    Thank God for The Osmonds then.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Ah but I didn't What I said was "If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide, yet still holds a belief in a deity, then that person is delusional, if the person doesn't, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.
    ok..lets break that down..

    "If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide.."
    1, assumes a consistancy in that knowledge.
    Are there different objective facts for different people.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2,asssumes a 'one size fits all' answer.
    Well it does! Unless there are different objective facts for different people.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    3, assumes the person knows which questions to ask.
    Aren't we talking about intelligent theists, then surely they can decern the objective from the subjective.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i am assuming you are including handicap and those with difficulty holding on to knowledge..
    Then you assume wrong, note the writing in blue italic above.
    If a person is either physically or mental unable to know different, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    "then that person is delusional."
    1, are you a doctor?
    No! But I am able to research the subject for myself,
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2, do you have the cure?
    No! but they can heal themselves, many people have.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    3, are you out to help these ppl?
    Would that I could,
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    4, or just looking to spread some Anti-Theist semetism..(sp?)
    Doesn't follow. Delusion is a medical condition, that many people suffer from, including the religious.
    Religion, however gets a free pass (I.E. is considered normal by the majority of the world, which are its adherrants, so do you wonder at it.) but the syptoms are the same, as any person who suffers from delusion.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "How would you define the difference between a man who believes he speaks and hears god and a man who just talks and hears voices?"
    1, assumes you understand what the person means by 'hears' God.
    What other reason is there?
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2, what do you mean 'speaks'?
    Well religious people pray and worship.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    speaks to God or speaks for God? (why would you assume he speaks For God??)
    Because every religious person SPAG's (Self Projection as God) Self projection as god - RationalWiki
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    3 , have you ever experienced this?
    Yes.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    4, so then why you bitchin about it?
    Because I am a humanist and I can see what this delusion does to my fellow man.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god real?"
    Its not my job to tell you what to believe.
    you gotta figure that out for yourself.
    Cop out! You know you can't demonstrate it, and you know it isn't rational.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "if you can't demonstrate it is real then your only course of action is to see it as a delusion."
    no..the only course of action is to realize that it is only a belief and not a Fact.
    Exactly, and as such not rational. So delusional.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "As such if a person cannot define the difference and yet still believes, then said person is acting irrational, is he not."
    so, if he is not einstein, then he is acting irrational?
    "Cannot" was a mis-spelling, fifu. So doesn't follow.
    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by pavlos View Post
    Ah but I didn't What I said was "If a person has all the access needed to the knowledge the world can provide, yet still holds a belief in a deity, then that person is delusional, if the person doesn't, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.
    ---------

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i am assuming you are including handicap and those with difficulty holding on to knowledge..
    Then you assume wrong, note the writing in blue italic above.
    If a person is either physically or mental unable to know different, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.
    so now you are saying handicap ppl are ignorant..?

    Doesn't follow. Delusion is a medical condition, that many people suffer from, including the religious.
    Religion, however gets a free pass (I.E. is considered normal by the majority of the world, which are its adherrants, so do you wonder at it.) but the syptoms are the same, as any person who suffers from delusion.
    assumption: All religious ppl are alike.
    assumption: belief equals delusion.
    logical fallicy: see here (too many to list)


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    1, assumes you understand what the person means by 'hears' God.
    What other reason is there?
    1, (your example) a person can literally hear voices in his head
    2, a person can 'listen' for God by paying attention to what is going on around him looking for clues that god is trying to tell him something.
    3, a person can believe that the advice he is getting from his friend is a message from God..(not saying the friend believes this..)
    4, a person can just get a feeling that God wants him to do something..

    all of these and more can be considered 'hearing God'


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2, what do you mean 'speaks'?
    Well religious people pray and worship.
    LOOKOUT!! there is a guy praying in the school! call the cops!
    gimme a break dude..
    you are using praying and worshiping as an excuse to hate them???
    that is like the most docile thing a religionist can do..come on..you can do better..

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    speaks to God or speaks for God? (why would you assume he speaks For God??)
    Because every religious person SPAG's (Self Projection as God) Self projection as god - RationalWiki
    again what is the harm in speaking to God??
    just another excuse?

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    3 , have you ever experienced this?
    Yes.
    explain.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    4, so then why you bitchin about it?
    Because I am a humanist and I can see what this delusion does to my fellow man.
    yea and i see ALOT more important delusions to be concered about..most coming from the lawmakers,politicians and anyone who is in charge of other employee's...
    either way believing in God is NOT a delusion.if you think it is then YOU are deluding yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god real?"
    Its not my job to tell you what to believe.
    you gotta figure that out for yourself.
    Cop out! You know you can't demonstrate it, and you know it isn't rational.
    I know i can't prove what/who/where God is in my life..but that does not make me irrational.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "if you can't demonstrate it is real then your only course of action is to see it as a delusion."
    no..the only course of action is to realize that it is only a belief and not a Fact.
    Exactly, and as such not rational. So delusional.
    now 'not rational' means 'delusional'?
    you cant seem to make up your mind what delusional is..

    Now back to :
    Aren't we talking about intelligent theists, then surely they can decern the objective from the subjective.
    so now you are saying that if their evidence for their belief is subjective then they are delusional??

    gee..then i guess the whole human race is delusional..which includes you.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    OK, Squirrel, my turn. Most of your responses are nothing but fallacies.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    so now you are saying handicap ppl are ignorant..?
    Yes, a person whose incapacitated mentally is ignorant of much of the world. We all have our ignorance. Don't repeat it in a way that makes it sound offensive as if saying what's accurate is supposed to be seen as a bad thing.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    assumption: All religious ppl are alike.
    Wrong. You're falling back on Flick Montana's defense here by grabbing onto his shirt tails. Your own assumption is that since the majority gets described, that someones is therefore describing each and every believer that exists. This is a straw man fallacy. No one is claiming that all religious people are alike.
    The claim is that all belief in God is delusion.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    assumption: belief equals delusion.
    It's not an assumption. Belief is delusion. You fall back on using this against an atheist argument later. So, make up your mind. You dislike the idea of belief being a delusion so you resist it vehemently. Resistance does not equal correctness.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    1, (your example) a person can literally hear voices in his head
    2, a person can 'listen' for God by paying attention to what is going on around him looking for clues that god is trying to tell him something.
    3, a person can believe that the advice he is getting from his friend is a message from God..(not saying the friend believes this..)
    4, a person can just get a feeling that God wants him to do something..

    all of these and more can be considered 'hearing God'
    Absolutely, yes.
    A person is behaving and responding to their environment based on the unsupported and irrational belief that a divine being is interacting with them.
    Replace the word, "God" with any other unsupported and mythical creature and you see the absurdity clearly. Such as "Unicorns."
    But because our culture is so inundated with the word, "God," we give it a free pass, unlike "Unicorns."

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    LOOKOUT!! there is a guy praying in the school! call the cops!
    gimme a break dude..
    Straw man and moving the goal posts. You asked about people claiming to interact with a divine creator. No one said anything about it being criminal.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you are using praying and worshiping as an excuse to hate them???
    Straw Man- claiming religious people are being "hated" simply for pointing out the fallacies and danger in their absurd and delusional behavior is a complete straw man and an appeal to pity. Pointing out a persons error is not "hate." "Hate" is attacking other people for not agreeing with your delusions, setting them on fire, ramming hijacked planes into buildings and the like.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    that is like the most docile thing a religionist can do..come on..you can do better..
    Jim Jones, David Koresh, Joan of Arc? All behaving and responding by their delusions of what they think God wants. Including many people that attack others over Abortion, AIDS, homosexuality and everything else that they think God is telling them he wants them to do.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    either way believing in God is NOT a delusion.if you think it is then YOU are deluding yourself.
    No one is deluding themselves by not partaking in mass delusion. That's the most ridiculous counter argument I've ever read.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    I know i can't prove what/who/where God is in my life..but that does not make me irrational.
    This rebuttal and the one above it were very irrational. If you cannot support or provide evidence for an unfounded belief then the belief is irrational. You reject the word only because you dislike the connotations of the word.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    so now you are saying that if their evidence for their belief is subjective then they are delusional??
    There is no evidence for a God. Zero. Zip. Zilch.
    There is only rationalizations, where the believer seeks out and finds whatever they think may support the belief with a confirmation bias. God Only SEEMS Nonexistent! - YouTube
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    gee..then i guess the whole human race is delusional..which includes you.
    Quite often, yes.
    pavlos and Dave Wilson like this.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    I know i can't prove what/who/where God is in my life..but that does not make me irrational.
    This rebuttal and the one above it were very irrational. If you cannot support or provide evidence for an unfounded belief then the belief is irrational.
    1, i was pickin on pavlos, not you..
    2, i changed the colors on my board..got rid of the space background.
    3, there is a difference between 'cannot support or provide evidence' and a desire to 'provide evidence'.

    i do not have to justify my belief in God by providing evidence to anyone..my belief is my own..I do not Expect anyone else to believe as i do.
    if someone asks me a question about it, i will answer it the best i can.. it is not my fault that the other turns it into something it is not.

    a conversation usually goes like this:

    a; why do you believe in God?
    t; because X,Y,Z (expecting sincerity in the question)
    a; proceeds to explain why X,Y,Z does not exist. (so much for sincerity..)

    its like someone asking you why you did something and when you tell them, they spend the next three hours trying to convince you of how you didn't do it the way you said you did it...
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    1, i was pickin on pavlos, not you..
    Irrelevant to the arguments that were made. Squirrel, I consider myself your friend. You're a Dunbar number; You're in my monkeysphere. If you called me at three am stuck with a flat tire on the side of the road, I'd haul out of bed and help you out. This is because of many occasions were you taught me things, and I relied on your wisdom which was augmented by your strong personality.
    So- am I "Evil" or "Hating" or "Spreading hate" of believers with my arguments? That would be nonsense. If I speak out against the dangers of Heroine, does this mean I hate heroine addicts? Or does it mean that I disagree with the abuse of heroine?
    Anyone should be able to argue with what you hold as beliefs without it being personal.
    You can pick on me, too- all you want. I'll rebut your arguments.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2, i changed the colors on my board..got rid of the space background.
    I'll check that out.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    3, there is a difference between 'cannot support or provide evidence' and a desire to 'provide evidence'.
    Yes, but you can hardly claim to be unwilling to provide evidence that there is a God. You believe there is a God. This is another cop out.
    Your belief requires no real evidence and when your mind questions it, you may then rationalize the belief, such as a baby surviving a burning building (Even though ten others died) as a "miracle" and "Evidence" that there is a God involved. You may look at times in your life where you feel you were motivated or guided by a higher power through choices or decisions; but none of that is evidence because you could well feel the same way after a great many different choices that could have been made- there is no substantial reason to show that the one choice you made was the best choice and that choice was directly influenced by a divine being.
    It is only a belief that you hold.
    You may feel at times that you asked for things from God, which you received, but you cannot know whether you would have received them had you not asked God, believed in God, or even asked the Goddess of Pickles and Cheese. For me, I've received the same amount of divine attention now as when I was a believer. Yet, you can say that is only because he hasn't given up on me. You see- none of that is evidence, it is unfounded belief and nothing more.

    Now, it's OK to have an irrational belief. I have many of my own. They are not Christian or Muslim beliefs but I do believe in some things which are based on faith or only slight scientific support and not hard evidence. For example, I believe there is life elsewhere than planet Earth. I have no evidence of this and the only support I have for it is the chemistry involved in emergence and the scale of the Universe.

    I do believe that both of those major religions (Christian and Muslim) have a lot of wisdom to offer, even if not divinely inspired.
    I also believe that a great many of biblical scriptures and many hadiths can bring great harm, as well.
    Since you as a person do not adhere to the majority of religiosity, you only hold a mild delusion, an irrational belief. Just as I have a mild delusion about other things. It's not an "I'm better than you" argument as some try to make it out to be.

    Atheists in general have determined that there is no cause to believe in God. Many atheists are still deluded on other affairs.

    Some atheists became atheist because they were disappointed in religion.
    But others became atheists when they learned critical thinking, emotional control and logic or being rational with thought. It is this group of atheists that promote critical thinking, even if they are the minority (Or majority, I do not know) of the group. Because the practice extends beyond religion and into other aspects of living, such as social performance, scientific productivity, candidate choosing and voting and how they treat their spouse.

    Some atheists are not really atheists, they are people that hate God for not giving them the life they wanted. Clearly, they are deluded.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i do not have to justify my belief in God by providing evidence to anyone..my belief is my own..I do not Expect anyone else to believe as i do.
    Which is exactly why it is a matter of faith and is unfounded and unsupported. You accept it as a want, not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not.
    I agree that you need not justify it to anyone. However, if you discuss it with others, you cannot claim that your faith is something that it is not simply to defend it for yourself.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    if someone asks me a question about it, i will answer it the best i can.. it is not my fault that the other turns it into something it is not.
    This is because there is no answer for anyone but yourself. It's something you feel and want and it may be for you and not for others. You cannot provide an answer to an atheist because it is an irrational belief without evidence.
    The only trick is for you to be ok with yourself for having that belief and not worry about whether you can defend it with evidence, but whether you're comfortable with holding the belief and you ensure it allows you to do no harm to others.
    Which frankly, I think is already the case most of the time and why I wish more Christians were like you. Sadly, you're one of the minority in this one.
    Others are not like you and you cannot reasonably defend their delusion.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    a; why do you believe in God?
    t; because X,Y,Z (expecting sincerity in the question)
    a; proceeds to explain why X,Y,Z does not exist. (so much for sincerity..)
    And I have done this.
    All of it was sincere.
    All you need answer if someone asks you why you believe is, "Because I want to and it's personal."
    Because you know already that you cannot provide a convincing answer. I believe that no one can own land. I cannot provide a convincing reason why and many people would show me title and deed of property they own. I can dismiss these as papers assigned by human conception- no one really can own land. They are born on it, live on it and eventually return to the land.
    So if someone were to ask me why I believe that land is free- I usually only say, "I am Lakota." No other answer is needed for anyone else.
     

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    <Warning..even longer response>

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    1, i was pickin on pavlos, not you..
    Irrelevant to the arguments that were made.
    see note 1 below


    Squirrel, I consider myself your friend. You're a Dunbar number; You're in my monkeysphere.
    Dunbar?monkeysphere? (goodness..)

    If you called me at three am stuck with a flat tire on the side of the road, I'd haul out of bed and help you out.
    and how long would it take you to get to NM?


    Anyone should be able to argue with what you hold as beliefs without it being personal.
    he is singling out a class of ppl and using a derogetory term to describe them..
    being one of those ppl in that group..(only by strict definition of the word..ie theist = believes in God. not theist = believes in doctrine/dogma/ritual/literal bible/etc)
    i decided to speak up..

    You can pick on me, too- all you want. I'll rebut your arguments.
    already picked on you..
    see " This is because of many occasions were you taught me things, and I relied on your wisdom which was augmented by your strong personality"
    see note 1

    <big inhale for this next section..>
    "Yes, but you can hardly claim to be unwilling to provide evidence that there is a God. You believe there is a God. This is another cop out."
    1,why can't i claim to be? its my choice.
    2, cop-out..a term used to goad another..


    "Your belief requires no real evidence and when your mind questions it,"
    the evidence i have is subjective..my mind accepts that..i still choose to believe.

    "you may then rationalize the belief,"
    rationalize the choice?

    "such as a baby surviving a burning building (Even though ten others died) as a "miracle" and "Evidence" that there is a God involved."
    bad example..(what is the harm of a person rationalizing a 'miracle' as Gods work?)

    "You may look at times in your life where you feel you were motivated or guided by a higher power through choices or decisions;"
    k..

    "but none of that is evidence because you could well feel the same way after a great many different choices that could have been made- "
    it is evidence..but yes..

    "there is no substantial reason to show that the one choice you made was the best choice"
    is this a 'which is better, choice A or choice B'..question?
    if so then, what if the difference between choice A and B is not about 'better'..?

    "and that choice was directly influenced by a divine being."
    by choice.

    "It is only a belief that you hold."

    Is belief a choice?
    (didn't we just discuss this?)
    ---
    <breath in..>


    "You may feel at times that you asked for things from God,"
    you dont always get what you want,but if you try sometimes,you just might get what you need..(true and awsome tune!)

    "but you cannot know whether you would have received them had you not asked God,"
    true and the flip is true also 'there is no guarentee that if you dont ask,you wont get'..IOW, he might just give you what you need anyway, whether you ask or not..(this can hurt..)

    "For me, I've received the same amount of divine attention now as when I was a believer. "
    thats not evidence of a lack of God..that is evidence of a consistant God..(because I choose too!)

    "Yet, you can say that is only because he hasn't given up on me."
    erp..

    "You see- none of that is evidence, it is unfounded belief and nothing more."
    still confusing alot of terms..
    recap:
    A belief in God is formed by evidence from a persons own personal perspective/experiances..yes this is influence by how/what he interprets of what he see's/hear's/feel's, which is why it is highly subjective, founded in the experiences of the perciever..

    for clarity: if it is a rational belief in God then consecutive experiences will reinforce that belief, if it is an irrational belief in God then subsequent events would not reinforce the belief. (so again..its not ALL theists..)


    Now, it's OK to have an irrational belief. I have many of my own. They are not Christian or Muslim beliefs but I do believe in some things which are based on faith or only slight scientific support and not hard evidence. For example, I believe there is life elsewhere than planet Earth. I have no evidence of this and the only support I have for it is the chemistry involved in emergence and the scale of the Universe.
    FYI..So do i..but i dont classify that belief as i do my belief in God..
    aliens are more logical than God..
    (humans are illogical..Could god use illogic to motivate us?)


    I do believe that both of those major religions (Christian and Muslim) have a lot of wisdom to offer, even if not divinely inspired.
    I also believe that a great many of biblical scriptures and many hadiths can bring great harm, as well.
    both? i believe they all have something positive to contribute..(irregardless of divine claims)
    its just a matter of getting past our own humanity..

    Since you as a person do not adhere to the majority of religiosity, you only hold a mild delusion, an irrational belief.
    its not a delusion..its a choice.

    "Atheists in general have determined that there is no cause to believe in God. "
    thats a sneaky way to say they chose not to believe in God..
    so if they can choose to not believe in God, why can't i choose to believe in God?

    "Many atheists are still deluded on other affairs."

    now if i were claiming:
    'God told me to stick my hand into the fire'
    'God is telling me to jump'
    'God told me to kill you'
    or some such..then you would have a case for irrational and deluded..


    "Some atheists became atheist because they were disappointed in religion."
    LOL...I became more of a theist the more i got dissapointed in religion..
    remember..i started with the premise 'God is good', i sought churches to learn more about him,(knew how to get around pretense's,old habit..why?why?why?why?)

    But others became atheists when they learned critical thinking, emotional control and logic or being rational with thought. It is this group of atheists that promote critical thinking, even if they are the minority (Or majority, I do not know) of the group.
    EduTheist?
    CritTheist?
    but you say 'became'..
    ExTheist?
    definatly need to start a thread to discuss more relevant terminology..

    Some atheists are not really atheists, they are people that hate God for not giving them the life they wanted. Clearly, they are deluded.
    when those type become outspoken against God, those are the Anti-Theists..
    (a catagory that pavlos almost qualifies for..not yet..)

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i do not have to justify my belief in God by providing evidence to anyone..my belief is my own..I do not Expect anyone else to believe as i do.
    Which is exactly why it is a matter of faith and is unfounded and unsupported. You accept it as a want,
    again misuse of the words..you are using them in a 'prove it' form..(see above)

    "not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not."
    Is belief a choice?

    is it a belief that:
    the fire is hot.
    the snow is white.
    charlie chaplin existed.

    does belief have to come with a certainty? (surely the more certain you are, the stronger you believe.)
    does belief have a guarantee? (of course not)

    why 'must' you accept it,'like it or not'?
    why does it 'have to' be a matter of non-choice?


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    if someone asks me a question about it, i will answer it the best i can.. it is not my fault that the other turns it into something it is not.
    This is because there is no answer for anyone but yourself. It's something you feel and want and it may be for you and not for others. You cannot provide an answer to an atheist because it is an irrational belief without evidence.
    I cannot provide an answer to an atheist because they believe it is irrational and without evidence.
    and all claims will be judged accordingly.


    The only trick is for you to be ok with yourself for having that belief and not worry about whether you can defend it with evidence, but whether you're comfortable with holding the belief and you ensure it allows you to do no harm to others.
    Which frankly, I think is already the case most of the time and why I wish more Christians were like you. Sadly, you're one of the minority in this one.
    Others are not like you and you cannot reasonably defend their delusion.
    why thank you..


    All you need answer if someone asks you why you believe is, "Because I want to and it's personal."
    um..see:
    'Because i choose to'

    -------

    Note 1: gotta learn to crawl before you learn to walk..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    everything is a belief so to speak. a person chooses to believe or not believe that human babies are made (naturally)by way of sexual intercourse. Because of the overwhelming evidence there is to support the belief that human babies are created through sex then the belief is considered rational and not delusional.

    if someone believes that human babies are magically created and delivered by drunken storks their belief is irrational and delusional. it is irrational and delusional because there is no testable evidence to support their belief.

    Any belief that is not supported by substantial evidence is irrational and delusional. Doesn't matter if it is belief in the existence of God, Atlantis, the Bermuda Triangle, Santa Clause, the ghost of Elvis Presley, or the singing talent of Britney Spears.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
     

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    What's with the "See Note 1" thing? Hmmm... Ok, we can do that...

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    how long would it take you to get to NM?
    A while. I meant if you were local. At this distance I'd call AAA for ya.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    he is singling out a class of ppl and using a derogetory term to describe them...
    He singled out a specific behavior employed by people of all races, ages, shapes and sizes and described the nature of that behavior.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    1,why can't i claim to be? its my choice.
    See note 1 below.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2, cop-out..a term used to goad another..
    See note 2 below.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    rationalize the choice?
    To find a reason to believe with a confirmation bias.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    bad example..(what is the harm of a person rationalizing a 'miracle' as Gods work?)
    Note 3.) The trouble arises from a mind being conditioned to think a certain way which easily can lead them to rationalize doing harmful acts that they normally may avoid, simply because they believe a higher power is going to reward them for obeying or be angry with them if they disobey him.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    it is evidence..but yes..
    Note 4.) It is not evidence because it does not establish anything as probable or true. It merely supposes or speculates about something unsupported.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    is this a 'which is better, choice A or choice B'..question?
    if so then, what if the difference between choice A and B is not about 'better'..?
    Any choice compared with any number of other choices. Some are not even choices much, really.
    Example: People who were late to work on Sept. 11. 00 that believed God directly made them late to spare them their fate in the burning building (Yet, did not spare the many who went to work on time, nor does it account for the average number of late people in a given week.)
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Is belief a choice?
    That is exactly what it is. Acceptance of evidence, however is less of a choice. It's still a choice, but more restricted.
    See note 3 above.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you dont always get what you want,but if you try sometimes,you just might get what you need..(true and awsome tune!)
    This removes the necessity of the God and asking that God for something which you could do for yourself.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    true and the flip is true also 'there is no guarentee that if you dont ask,you wont get'..IOW, he might just give you what you need anyway, whether you ask or not..(this can hurt..)
    This assumes that a Giving God is involved, but as you point out, if we agree "he" may give or not without anyway of knowing, clearly there is no evidence of him from the "giving" factor and it's a matter of Faith if a God is involved or not.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    thats not evidence of a lack of God..that is evidence of a consistant God..(because I choose too!)
    It is evidence of nothing more than that you choose a rationalization to confirm a faith-based belief for yourself. Again, there is no evidence in a lack of establishing a causal effect.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    A belief in God is formed by evidence from a persons own personal perspective/experiances..yes this is influence by how/what he interprets of what he see's/hear's/feel's, which is why it is highly subjective, founded in the experiences of the perciever..
    It is a rationalization and confirmation bias by any individual that wants to believe and therefor, finds a reason to do so.
    See note 4 above.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    if it is an irrational belief in God then subsequent events would not reinforce the belief
    The act of repeatedly using a confirmation bias to refuse to let go of a belief based on pure faith that a person wants to have is not evidence of a God.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Could god use illogic to motivate us?)
    If you read the Bible, it sure appears so!
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    its just a matter of getting past our own humanity..
    Letting go of primitive superstitions is one way of getting 'past our humanity.'
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    its not a delusion..its a choice.
    See note 3, 4 above: Delusion is often chosen.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    thats a sneaky way to say they chose not to believe in God..
    It's not sneaky, at all. It means that there is no evidence of any such thing and many atheists accept that a lack of evidence for God makes the belief in a God superfluous and unnecessary.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    why can't i choose to believe in God?
    You can. No one is telling you that you cannot choose delusion.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    now if i were claiming:
    'God told me to stick my hand into the fire'
    'God is telling me to jump'
    'God told me to kill you'
    or some such..then you would have a case for irrational and deluded..
    The bible, torah, koran and its hadiths all have many of these claims. In fact, many of the greats in history, good and bad, claimed direct inspiration from God.
    Even recently. See the example above. Sept 11, those who attacked say it was Gods Will and those that survived the attack also claim it was Gods Will. Clearly, it's all speculation and supposition and is not evidence in any way at all.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    definatly need to start a thread to discuss more relevant terminology..
    Will it prevent you from inventing terms?
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    when those type become outspoken against God, those are the Anti-Theists..
    I am an anti-theist. I think that religion and faith are more of a harm than a good for humanity. It promotes ignorance, superstition, lack of personal responsibility, heavenly justification, divine intervention and it promotes an anti-scientific study/progress agenda as irrational believers press to have educational institutions fail to teach proper science and instead, teach crank and crackpot ideas.
    It promotes faith instead of examination, belief instead of critical thinking, prayer instead of direct action and hatred or intolerance of others that do not share in the same primitive superstitions or fail to meet the ideals of that superstition, such as race, sexual orientation, political affiliation or life choices, such as same sex marriage or the ability to early term abort a pregnancy without threat of being blown to smithereens by some superstitious fanatic that claims it was Gods Will.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    is it a belief that:
    the fire is hot.
    the snow is white.
    charlie chaplin existed.
    All of which are established by objective and hard tangible evidence, not speculations or suppositions based purely on aesthetic wants.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    why does it 'have to' be a matter of non-choice?
    It doesn't and I have never claimed that it must.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Note 1: gotta learn to crawl before you learn to walk..
    Yes, and many people first learn of Easter Bunny's and Santa Clause while crawling. When they learn to walk, they usually let go of silly childish superstitions.


    Note 1.) That's what I said to do.

    Note 2.) A cop out is a term used to describe when a person dodges an issue or question with an excuse.
     

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    After reading some of the recent exchanges here, I wish to add that beliefs or specifically theistic beliefs are selectively irrational. While the people who hold them may be considered delusional because they (the beliefs) are more often than not; unfalsifiable and highly subjective in the way they (the beliefs) are interpreted, most of the people operate quite "normally" on other aspects of their lives. As a species, we have evolved to operate irrationally at times possibly due to the selective advantages of confirmation bias for survival in the wild where predators lurk.

    This naturally applies to both camps of people who hold theistic beliefs and those who do not. The capacity for rational and irrational thought is embedded within all of us.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Letting go of primitive superstitions is one way of getting 'past our humanity.'.
    also to understand how much we humans 'flavor' our communication with 'justification' and 'self worth'..


    The bible, torah, koran and its hadiths all have many of these claims. In fact, many of the greats in history, good and bad, claimed direct inspiration from God.
    Even recently. See the example above. Sept 11, those who attacked say it was Gods Will and those that survived the attack also claim it was Gods Will. Clearly, it's all speculation and supposition and is not evidence in any way at all.
    ah..so then this is an issue of using God as an excuse to do wrong..
    IOW is the 'God told me to' defense valid..(would have to answer no..)


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    definatly need to start a thread to discuss more relevant terminology..
    Will it prevent you from inventing terms?
    no..it would encourage me too..but you have to admit that the terms theist and atheist, are too generic a description when the discussion gets to a certain depth..

    I am an anti-theist.
    when i first met you,you were..
    now not so much..
    you are less focused on insulting and more focused on the 'critical thinking' part..


    I think that religion and faith are more of a harm than a good for humanity. It promotes ignorance, superstition, lack of personal responsibility, heavenly justification, divine intervention and it promotes an anti-scientific study/progress agenda as irrational believers press to have educational institutions fail to teach proper science and instead, teach crank and crackpot ideas.
    It promotes faith instead of examination, belief instead of critical thinking, prayer instead of direct action and hatred or intolerance of others that do not share in the same primitive superstitions or fail to meet the ideals of that superstition, such as race, sexual orientation, political affiliation or life choices, such as same sex marriage or the ability to early term abort a pregnancy without threat of being blown to smithereens by some superstitious fanatic that claims it was Gods Will.
    there is nothing there i can argue with..the focus there is religion..not God..you properly blame man for the misuse of God.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    is it a belief that:
    the fire is hot.
    the snow is white.
    charlie chaplin existed.
    All of which are established by objective and hard tangible evidence, not speculations or suppositions based purely on aesthetic wants.
    correct..wich means they are not beliefs..they are fact.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    why does it 'have to' be a matter of non-choice?
    It doesn't and I have never claimed that it must.
    you said:
    Which is exactly why it is a matter of faith and is unfounded and unsupported. You accept it as a want, not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not.
    the phrase " not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not"
    infered it.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Note 1: gotta learn to crawl before you learn to walk..
    Yes, and many people first learn of Easter Bunny's and Santa Clause while crawling. When they learn to walk, they usually let go of silly childish superstitions.
    some concepts have to be understood before moving on to the next one..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    also to understand how much we humans 'flavor' our communication with 'justification' and 'self worth'..
    I don't see anything wrong with a sense of self worth. Even for a non-believer.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    ah..so then this is an issue of using God as an excuse to do wrong..
    IOW is the 'God told me to' defense valid..(would have to answer no..)
    I agree that it's invalid, but many are quite sincere with their belief. But let's ignore the major crimes for a moment.
    Many situations where people expect or believe in Gods guidance ends up with them making no choices or poor choices leading to self harm. Many people offer to pray for others, which is a nice way of doing nothing at all.
    This mentality seems harmless on the small scale. Ok so someone marries stupidly- how is that everyone elses problem? It isn't- but the mindset that leads to these avoidable mistakes is. It teaches a lack of responsibility. Perhaps blame Satan or the devil. Or perhaps don't, but believe you're a divine product and therefor, forgiven and absolved of "sin" and be reckless and careless about personal choices.
    It is the exact same mindset that believes that we can trash the planet today and it's ok because God wouldn't allow us to mess up the planet, right? It contributes to a "not my problem" attitude, give it to God- Let God.
    The idea that we're somehow Omnipotently protected, safe in Gods loving arms has caused foolishness on the small and the grand scale. In a more secular society than we had before, we're looking a the mess left behind by previous generations carelessness. It's not Gods, fault. It's our own. But I do think that the belief in the divine led to a lack of accountability and responsibility. It may not be a Gods fault but it can be the fault of the belief in the scriptures of a God.
    The details of the belief itself may just be a minor detail- the mindset, however, has far reaching implications.

    Personally, I believe the mindset came before organized and detailed religion. But the religion and belief mindset enable and encourage it.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    no..it would encourage me too..but you have to admit that the terms theist and atheist, are too generic a description when the discussion gets to a certain depth..
    Agreed.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you are less focused on insulting and more focused on the 'critical thinking' part..
    It's too easy to see the damage that many irrational beliefs cause and blame those damages on the obvious or to simply be angered by them.
    Not an excuse as much as an apology.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    they are fact.
    Close enough. Point is, you have no evidence for a God. It's pure belief and faith. It's best to be honest with yourself and others, rather than think you have subjective observational evidence which is easily shown to be speculation based on confirmation bias, such as believing God helped you through a tough time. You can believe God comforted you and inspired you when you were troubled, without claiming it as evidence of his existence.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you said:
    Which is exactly why it is a matter of faith and is unfounded and unsupported. You accept it as a want, not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not.
    the phrase " not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not" inferred it.
    You misunderstood. That sentence you isolated referred to things such as Evolution or Relativity or some such- where overwhelming evidence for it cannot be sanely denied. Therefor, you must accept it (assuming you're aware of all the evidence), even if you did not like the idea that we evolve- or be batshit crazy. It does not refer to matters of faith.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    some concepts have to be understood before moving on to the next one..
    Again- agreed. Please understand the concepts we've discussed here.
    Remember, I used to be faithful and in the ministry- I've experienced it first hand for much of my life. It's not as though I was raised to be a non-believer and have no idea what it feels like to love and believe in God.
     

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    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    correct..wich means they are not beliefs..they are fact.

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    why does it 'have to' be a matter of non-choice?
    It doesn't and I have never claimed that it must.
    [Neverfly] said:
    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly
    Which is exactly why it is a matter of faith and is unfounded and unsupported. You accept it as a want, not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not.
    the phrase " not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not"
    infered it.
    It seems you misread what he actually said. You got the words right but maybe you stressed the wrong words or something because you somehow gleaned the exact opposite meaning as what seems to be intended (I realize I have the advantage over others knowing how Neverfly thinks and speaks on a personal level). The words you quoted are somewhat out of context since you left off the beginning of what he said in your reiteration. In the direct quote you have the complete statement.

    "You accept it as a want,..." clearly supports the concept that a belief is a choice, a desire. "...,not as something demonstrated as reality that you must accept, like it or not." the highlighted word "not" expresses that the idea that follows is NOT what you interpret to be true.



    Now my personal views that are not in any direct response to anything posted by anyone else.
    disclaimer: If you are intoxicated do not read any further. TSF and I assume no responsibility for any "bad trips" that occur as a result of reading this post while inebriated.

    Each and every one of us, exists only in our own minds as far as we know. Any one of us could be sitting in a padded cell wearing a straight jacket imagining our entire lives. Any one of us could be some weird non human life form, imagining that we are an alien on some strange planet we call earth.

    There are actual facts, at least I believe there are. But the thing is, I have no way of knowing if ANYTHING is real with absolute certainty. I, like every other human being, am at the mercy of my brain and how it manages to interpret the environment through the senses of sight, smell, taste, touch, and sound. My brain uses these things to take in data. And the rest is up to my brain to figure out what it all means. Sometimes those senses don't relay accurate information and I become disoriented and confused. Sometimes the brain does its best to fill in the gaps of missing data in order to try to create reasonable and manageable view of the world that exists outside of our brain, if there actually is one.

    There are some beliefs we accept as "fact" because, assuming (yes there is no way to get through life without making at least a few assumptions) there really is more than one person in existence, more than one mind, the majority of people are perceiving the same data and reaching the same interpretations of that data in regards to the outside world. For instance, we all perceive that long term exposure to extreme temperatures creates discomfort and possibly even leads to death. So it is considered reasonable to believe that the human body can only function comfortably within a particular temperature range. Over time the scientific community, and even teh religious, have agreed that believing in something that doesn't make logical sense and has no evidence to support it, is irrational. I think a person of science as well as most theists would believe it irrational, if some valedictorian had a panic attack because they had an exam and couldn't find their "lucky socks". Even if they have had straight A's, plenty of sleep, impeccable study habits, and an IQ of 300. There is clearly no REAL evidence to support the concept of luck. Luck is assumed by the irrationality of circumstantial evidence, which in legal situations (and for very good reason) is not even admissible in US criminal courts. Luck is assumed by the observation of vague patterns and coincidences and by ignoring and dismissing false positives. For instance:

    Exam 1 Grade:98 Socks worn: blue stripes studied?: yes
    Exam 2 Grade:89 Socks worn: Red polka dots studied?: yes
    Exam 3 Grade:88 Socks worn: blue stripes studied?: yes
    Exam 4 Grade:67 Socks worn: white studied?: no
    Exam 5 Grade:90 Socks worn: black studied?: yes
    Exam 6 Grade: 93 Socks worn: blue stripes studied?: yes


    An irrational mind may conclude that because each time they wore blue stripes socks they got good grades, that the blue stripes socks must be lucky. This conclusion ignores the fact that exam 3 had a lower grade than exam2 during which red polka dot socks were worn. It also ignores that a good grade was received while wearing black socks. It also ignores that the student has an overall pattern of having high test scores, with only one score being rather low. It also ignores the more relevant pattern that all the good scores were received on tests where the student studied for the test and the one low score coincides with having not studied. '

    This type of delusion is extremely common in humanity as well as many animals. it is pattern recognition even if the logic behind the perceived pattern is not perfect. Lets say a puppy is abused by it's first owner who happened to be a fat red headed woman who always wore black. The puppy was rarely allowed to interact with other people and over time the puppy grew into an adult and was rescued. Now the new family notices that the puppy snarls and growls any time they come into contact with fat red headed women or people dressed in black. The puppy lacks the data and/or logic to realize that not all humans behave the same, and they cannot be categorized by appearance. It's brain did what human brains do. Noticed a pattern that indicated a risk factor and reacted to that pattern in an effort towards self preservation.

    In the case of the student who believes he has lucky socks, what has probably happened is that his self worth is low. He does not perceive himself to be capable of doing well academically without some supernatural help. Low self worth is very common among humans. Realizing our limitations is another form of self preservation, otherwise we may end up dying off because we think we can jump across the grand canyon or that we can face a tornado with nothing more than an umbrella. But sometimes we are far too cautious for our own good. The concept of god or lucky charms, makes up for low self confidence, low self worth. They allow us to find a source of confidence when we fail to see our own abilities and only focus on our limitations. Being able to accurately see the balance point between the two is when we reach a completely rational existence. I doubt a single human being has reached that point yet.


    In the case of misconceptions that atheists hold of theists, well I think many of them have been stated already. Perhaps another angle would be what are the misconceptions that atheist and theists have of themselves. We are all quick to point out the mistakes of others. Are we willing to look at our own misconceptions and try to remove our own delusions? The scientific method is a tool to remove delusions. But we need to know how to use the tool properly before we will have any success. Considering the human brain is the primary tool for observation of the universe, it seems to me that learning how to use it properly would be the first step in understanding reality. If you don't know how to use a compass, it won't likely be any use to you if you get lost.
    Last edited by seagypsy; January 14th, 2013 at 10:53 AM.
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    Let's see if I got this right?

    Belief
    is something you hold true without evidence. So an axiom is essentially a belief.
    Rational belief is taken to be true with or because of evidence. which means that you believe the evidence, evidence for the evidence etc.
    Irrational belief is held true contrary to evidence. This would also be a false belief if one was able to or willing to look at and recognise the evidence, and a delusion if one was not aware of, or unable to accept the evidence.

    Have I got it so far?
    Last edited by Daedalus; January 14th, 2013 at 05:55 AM.
     

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    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus View Post
    Let's see if I got this right?

    Belief
    is something you hold true without evidence. So an axiom is essentially a belief.
    Rational belief is taken to be true with or because of evidence. which means that you believe the evidence, evidence for the evidence etc.
    Irrational belief is held true contrary to evidence. This would also be a false belief if one was able to or willing to look at and recognise the evidence, and a delusion if one was not aware of, or unable to accept the evidence.

    Have I got it so far?
    Try Wiki's definition:
    Belief is the [psychological] state in which an individual holds a proposition or premise to be true.
    That way rational and irrational make more sense - is there evidence for holding this proposition to be true?
    If there's no evidence then it's an irrational belief...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus View Post
    Let's see if I got this right?

    Belief
    is something you hold true without evidence. So an axiom is essentially a belief.
    Correct, but in the sense of a exportable belief, one that can be understood by others just a well as precisely as you do, probably aliens too.
    But it is a leap of faith. The main one for rational people is to believe in logic/rationality. Logic is well defined, and is not subject to personal interpretation. Yet you must believe that. I have always observe logic to be true. But I also see logic "abused", mostly by Atheist that more likely seems to think of themselves as more logic/rational (they are barely so).

    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus View Post
    Rational belief is taken to be true with or because of evidence. which means that you believe the evidence, evidence for the evidence etc.
    No. A rational statement is not a belief, it is a construction rationally/logically based on previous belief/axiom (which must be as few and as rock solid as possible)

    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus View Post
    Irrational belief is held true contrary to evidence. This would also be a false belief if one was able to or willing to look at and recognize the evidence, and a delusion if one was not aware of, or unable to accept the evidence.
    Evidence is not to enter the equation. Irrational belief may as well be based on the same few axiom, but with error in the rational/logical "house of card" building (kind of cheating).
    Irrational belief may also be build logically/rationally on weak axiom. In such cases the build/rational path is often very short, because the more you build on weak axiom the fastest you'll see logic collapsing the "house of card".

    On the other hand rational construction/path can be very long, incredibly tortuous, excessively futile, but rock solid. Some times it make more sense (in a the sense of energy invested on benefice returned) to use a smaller irrational stack of knowledge to get to the same conclusion as a long and heavy rational one.
    -Jesus says: loves your neighbor like yourself
    -Anthropology/biology/social science says: altruism exist for such and such reason, is coded on such and such gene....

    Both says the same, one is way more accessible then the others...
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    As a species, we have evolved to operate irrationally at times possibly due to the selective advantages of confirmation bias for survival in the wild where predators lurk.

    This naturally applies to both camps of people who hold theistic beliefs and those who do not. The capacity for rational and irrational thought is embedded within all of us.
    I will go one step further and say that all of us not only can but do hold irrational beliefs, and act upon them on a daily basis. I refer to moral beliefs which lack any scientific evidence. Example: can someone provide scientific evidence that slavery is immoral?
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    No. A rational statement is not a belief
    But a rational belief IS. You've missed the point methinks.

    Evidence is not to enter the equation.
    But evidence DOES enter the equation.

    For example, it is rational to believe (and act on the belief) that your friends like you (evidence being that they call, talk to you in a pleasant manner, buy you presents...) but you cannot prove this to be true - they could be faking it and concealing a deep hatred for some unknown reason.
    Whereas holding a belief for which there is no evidence (there's an invisible intangible mind-reading unicorn in the garage) is irrational.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    No. A rational statement is not a belief
    But a rational belief IS. You've missed the point methinks.
    Maybe I have not explain myself clearly enough, but a rational statement(a construction, a logical thread of boolean logic), is not a belief. It is build out of a(or some few) belief which is: "logic exist"/a few axiom. Rationality is what it is (something logically verifiable), irrationality is when it is not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Evidence is not to enter the equation.
    But evidence DOES enter the equation.
    No, not for deciding between what is rational from what is not. Evidence (as a confrontation with reality , not as something self-making sense) is something rational though often use, to decide between two or more path to go on (some can argues that irrational though also (an example: intelligent design freak))

    Still your examples are good. That is why a little paranoia is always welcomed when observing evidence (like to be liked). You can always assume they are all faking, it is a possibility. The unicorn also, it is a possibility. Once you have define it, it became rational to process both hypothesis.
    The unicorn may even have more aversion to me than my pseudo friend, which would explain why nobody can see it

    What would be irrational is to think that any kind of progress (shared rational knowledge) can be build onto un-observable phenomenon (whatever this is).
    Unicorn is an example, micro-nano-pico string vibrating into 21 dimensions is another.

    One would explain why things keep disappearing in your or my garage, the other might explain everything in our universe. That would explain why the later, had receive more attention from scientist than Unicorn.
     

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    I contemplate that 'belief' is our personal 'comfort zone' in the experience of constant change that is a lifetime. What is interesting is the means whereby we arrive at these beliefs, and the reasons that some of us retain them while others tend to change their beliefs.

    Early beliefs would seem to be the result of immediate conditioning by family and society and for that reason I ponder that 'belief' is a method of social organization that provides a survival benefit to the individual in a herd by the benefits of inclusion which may be shared resources, protection and succor in times of need.

    For that reason, it matters little 'what' is believed, or whether it passes the tests of rational scientific proof. The benefits come from the co-operation of the individuals who share any belief system. If you have ever witnessed the Jehovahs Witnesses undertake to construct a new place of worship, you may well be impressed by the appearance of a completed structure within 72 hours on a prepared building site. Regardless of their beliefs, such output could be considered as evidence that it provides a social structure for co-operative effort.
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    Originally posted by Boing 3000:

    No, not for deciding between what is rational from what is not. Evidence (as a confrontation with reality , not as something self-making sense) is something rational though often use, to decide between two or more path to go on (some can argues that irrational though also (an example: intelligent design freak))
    The evidence of our confrontation with reality is subject to different interpretations by individuals depending on their previous experiences and conditioning, in my observation. 'Rational' becomes a subjective determination in such case for the only test of 'rational' that most are capable of making is whether or not they can find a 'comfort zone' in accepting or utilizing the continual input of observable 'evidence.'

    Many persons are influenced by a perceived 'need to conform' in order to retain their 'group status', regardless of which group that may be while others are quite comfortable in not accepting the currently popular paradigm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    'Rational' becomes a subjective determination in such case for the only test of 'rational' that most are capable of making is whether or not they can find a 'comfort zone' in accepting or utilizing the continual input of observable 'evidence.'
    Two very rational remarks

    I'll add that for the scientific method, this 'comfort zone' is called a margin of error. And that could became very difficult for science less exact.
    So there is a rational to weight the quality of the quantity of rationality.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    I contemplate that 'belief' is our personal 'comfort zone' in the experience of constant change that is a lifetime. What is interesting is the means whereby we arrive at these beliefs, and the reasons that some of us retain them while others tend to change their beliefs.

    Early beliefs would seem to be the result of immediate conditioning by family and society and for that reason I ponder that 'belief' is a method of social organization that provides a survival benefit to the individual in a herd by the benefits of inclusion which may be shared resources, protection and succor in times of need.

    For that reason, it matters little 'what' is believed, or whether it passes the tests of rational scientific proof. The benefits come from the co-operation of the individuals who share any belief system. If you have ever witnessed the Jehovahs Witnesses undertake to construct a new place of worship, you may well be impressed by the appearance of a completed structure within 72 hours on a prepared building site. Regardless of their beliefs, such output could be considered as evidence that it provides a social structure for co-operative effort.
    You should see how two or more Amish families come together to build a house and a barn from the ground up in a single day. Usually as a wedding gift for a young couple getting married that same day.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    'Rational' becomes a subjective determination in such case for the only test of 'rational' that most are capable of making is whether or not they can find a 'comfort zone' in accepting or utilizing the continual input of observable 'evidence.'
    Two very rational remarks

    I'll add that for the scientific method, this 'comfort zone' is called a margin of error. And that could became very difficult for science less exact.
    So there is a rational to weight the quality of the quantity of rationality.
    Yes. We can 'weight' the rational by means of establishing observable criteria. As example, while 'God' has yet to be proven or disproved, it is easily verifiable and observable than many people profess to a belief in God.

    'God' has yet to be proven. 'Belief' in god is evident. Evidence and the illogical make for a fascinating observation.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    Early beliefs would seem to be the result of immediate conditioning by family and society and for that reason I ponder that 'belief' is a method of social organization that provides a survival benefit to the individual in a herd by the benefits of inclusion which may be shared resources, protection and succor in times of need.

    For that reason, it matters little 'what' is believed, or whether it passes the tests of rational scientific proof. The benefits come from the co-operation of the individuals who share any belief system. If you have ever witnessed the Jehovahs Witnesses undertake to construct a new place of worship, you may well be impressed by the appearance of a completed structure within 72 hours on a prepared building site. Regardless of their beliefs, such output could be considered as evidence that it provides a social structure for co-operative effort.
    I second a whole lot of this, definitely. I think one thing that many supposed debates between theism and non-theism get caught up on is the specifics of the beliefs and whether they are right or wrong in terms of evidence while it strikes me that whether or not the beliefs are true is largely inconsequential in terms of where they are from and why they are held; after all, seeing how many different beliefs there are, even if we assume one general direction is true, we are still left with a great many others that still must be social constructs.

    And it certainly is no doubt that a group that forms a strong cohesion in terms of belief and in-group mentality can accomplish far more than a group that is scattered and torn between in-group and out-group behavior - theism does not have a monopoly on these kinds of groups, but it is my understanding that they are generally a fair bit more common in strongly theistic societies, which would make perfect sense.

    Of course, religious belief seems to cover far more ground than just group cohesion and cooperation, also touching on our desire for stories, our fears of failure and death, our desire to feel safe and comforted... I believe it is Dan Dennett who has referred to religion as a very well-evolved phenomenon and I would certainly agree with that - it would not have survived this long as a social structure had it not been both well-adapted and still very adaptive.

    Actually, if you do not mind me going on down my own stream of consciousness, this makes me wonder if our current climate with rising non-theism and such may have to do with our ability to communicate - since we are more than ever able to find like-minded groups to associate with, the need for social cohesion with those who live around you is diminished, so the need for the socially unifying structure is much lower. To my mind, it would also explain the prevalence of various cults of personality that tend to spring up around sports or fandoms or the like - since we can associate with the like-minded, we can engage with group behavior with them rather than with those physically around us. Much like, it would seem to me, that tabloid newspapers have largely taken over the role of gossip societies and the like.

    Of course, I have no evidence of any of this, so it is just idle speculation on my part and rather something of a digression, for which I apologise.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    Actually, if you do not mind me going on down my own stream of consciousness, this makes me wonder if our current climate with rising non-theism and such may have to do with our ability to communicate - since we are more than ever able to find like-minded groups to associate with, the need for social cohesion with those who live around you is diminished, so the need for the socially unifying structure is much lower. To my mind, it would also explain the prevalence of various cults of personality that tend to spring up around sports or fandoms or the like - since we can associate with the like-minded, we can engage with group behavior with them rather than with those physically around us. Much like, it would seem to me, that tabloid newspapers have largely taken over the role of gossip societies and the like.

    Of course, I have no evidence of any of this, so it is just idle speculation on my part and rather something of a digression, for which I apologise.
    In my opinion, it worth a thread of its own, I have a similar point a view...

    By as far as this thread is concerned, I am not so sure Atheism has really significantly decrease the past 10 - 100 or 1000 years. I think the human brain is still the same as the one used to carve stone, so it needs some kind of belief, to have a certain equilibrium.

    It may be another Atheism misconception, that we are automatically in more sane/in equilibrium state, by not believing in God. I think it requires will/effort, and somewhat draws on your energy. Maybe it is the reason why old people tends to "rediscover" god (not only fear of death).
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    In my opinion, it worth a thread of its own, I have a similar point a view...
    It might be worth a try, yes; I admit that part of me have been pondering how a thread about attempting to understand religious belief as a social and psychological construct would fare, though I have yet to build up the confidence to create one as I fear it might quickly be drowned in statements as to whether religion is true or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    By as far as this thread is concerned, I am not so sure Atheism has really significantly decrease the past 10 - 100 or 1000 years. I think the human brain is still the same as the one used to carve stone, so it needs some kind of belief, to have a certain equilibrium.

    It may be another Atheism misconception, that we are automatically in more sane/in equilibrium state, by not believing in God. I think it requires will/effort, and somewhat draws on your energy. Maybe it is the reason why old people tends to "rediscover" god (not only fear of death).
    Honestly? I think atheism as a phenomenon in adults (if you will) is something that gains predominance not over time but as an effect of larger collected societies that has a reduced in-group/out-group conflict. I certainly agree that I do not think our minds have changed immensely over the last few millenia - in fact, I think one could make a good case that our brains are in many ways struggling to keep up with an ever more information-heavy society.

    I do think however, admittedly without any numbers or evidence, that in larger cities that foster free thought, various forms of non-theism is going to come along for the ride as both the uniform societal structure of theism becomes harder to maintain and also becomes less important for group cohesion - basically the greater chance that you can group up with like-minded individuals rather than being stuck with those around you, the less the social construct of faith is fostered and required.

    I also agree that atheism is likely not the more stable state of mind either - while one could make arguments about accepting potentially uncomfortable truth over comforting truthiness, I do think we to some degree have an innate need for some of the comfort and social exchange that is typically provided through religious faith and religious community. This does not mean that I think such faith and community is necessarily the only way to achieve that stability, but it certainly is the most prevalent construct we appear to have. I can certainly admit that there are times that I envy my quite religious parents as I recognise that they have a source of stability and comfort to call upon that I do not - however as I have not found myself able to embrace their faith as they do, I do wonder to some degree just what it is that makes me so different from them in this issue.

    Edit: As a side point to my comment about potentially uncomfortable truths over comforting truthiness (and to adhere a little bit more to the actual thread topic), I think one misconception that at least some atheists have is that just because they might manage just fine without the comforting aspects of theism, that does not mean that goes for everyone.
    Last edited by Kompi; January 14th, 2013 at 02:21 PM. Reason: Added missing words
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    however as I have not found myself able to embrace their faith as they do, I do wonder to some degree just what it is that makes me so different from them in this issue.
    A random connection between two neuron ? Too big a dose of endorphin when you discover the "truth" about Santa ? The fact is that roughly 20% of us are "suffering" from this condition, and at various degree.

    But what I mean is that I know people that does not not give a dam about a "superior mysterious entity", that would laugh out loud when seeing people kneeling on the floor to get on board to salvation, and that would themselves lie on a cold floor a whole night to get the "first" IPadX, or the first seat to such movies, or would kill to have a ticket for such and such concert/baseball, not counting those who would faints literally just by hearing their "God" speak to them (being the Beatles or Britney spears).
    They may change of "God" on a whim, go full "Gothic" and start piercing themselves just like "Jesus" on a cross, all they need is to identify to a group. Atheist is just one of them.
    We choose to be Atheist, that is now a consensus on this thread, I think. Maybe it is a group less versatile (less people quitting Atheism), but I cannot site any real/rational study about that. Theist also tend to stick to their truth
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    A random connection between two neuron ? Too big a dose of endorphin when you discover the "truth" about Santa ? The fact is that roughly 20% of us are "suffering" from this condition, and at various degree.

    But what I mean is that I know people that does not not give a dam about a "superior mysterious entity", that would laugh out loud when seeing people kneeling on the floor to get on board to salvation, and that would themselves lie on a cold floor a whole night to get the "first" IPadX, or the first seat to such movies, or would kill to have a ticket for such and such concert/baseball, not counting those who would faints literally just by hearing their "God" speak to them (being the Beatles or Britney spears).
    They may change of "God" on a whim, go full "Gothic" and start piercing themselves just like "Jesus" on a cross, all they need is to identify to a group. Atheist is just one of them.
    We choose to be Atheist, that is now a consensus on this thread, I think. Maybe it is a group less versatile (less people quitting Atheism), but I cannot site any real/rational study about that. Theist also tend to stick to their truth
    Well, the reason I suspect there might be something at work is because I, as I've stated much earlier in this thread, never experienced this apparent choice about belief that others claim to have had. For me it was never something where I one day decided I would go one over the other, it was a discovery I made - and to a point even tried to resist. The only choice I ever made about losing faith was when I finally decided to accept that pretending to myself that I believed something I didn't wasn't very conductive behavior - my choice was just to stop lying to myself, rather than choosing to change my actual beliefs.

    As for the rest though, I certainly agree that these are not uncommon behaviors - in fact, I would count to the various cults of personality and fandom wars and the like that spout up around various brands or sports teams or Internet personalities or whatever. After all, if you look at people arguing which characters should end up in a relationship in some form of narrative series, or which sports team is the better, or which Internet personality is the more interesting/more funny/more right, it doesn't look all that far away from watching two groups of faith antagonise each other over which one is led by the most genuine prophet.

    Of course, do bear in mind that the above behavior is conducted both by people with and without faith, so it certainly is not limited to either disposition. I think for me, one of the things that makes religion an interesting phenomenon is really that it collects a whole lot of these clearly rather deeply rooted human tendencies under a single umbrella. In some ways, I think one could probably make a very good case for the idea that religious belief might actually represent an attempt of ours - however unconsciously so - at trying to both channel and control a great deal of these kinds of urges to allow us to build a stable, larger society to begin with.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i am assuming you are including handicap and those with difficulty holding on to knowledge..
    Then you assume wrong, note the writing in blue italic above.
    If a person is either physically or mental unable to know different, then that person is merely ignorant of the facts.
    so now you are saying handicap ppl are ignorant..?
    Well of course they are but never intentionally. What they don't understand they are ignorant too. It is not a derisive statement. It is sad that you could have the opinion it is derisive.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Doesn't follow. Delusion is a medical condition, that many people suffer from, including the religious.
    Religion, however gets a free pass (I.E. is considered normal by the majority of the world, which are its adherents, so do you wonder at it.) but the symptoms are the same, as any person who suffers from delusion.
    assumption: All religious ppl are alike.
    Never said that, or intimated it.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    assumption: belief equals delusion.
    Well lets get the dictionary definition.
    Oxford English dictionary.
    Belief: an acceptance that something exists or is true, especially one without proof.
    Faith: strong belief in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual conviction rather than proof.
    Delusion: an idiosyncratic belief or impression maintained despite being contradicted by reality or rational argument.
    Dorland's medical dictionary.
    Delusion: an idiosyncratic false belief that is firmly maintained in spite of incontrovertible and obvious proof or evidence to the contrary.

    The definition of delusion is the same as Faith/belief.

    So it seems belief does equal delusion

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    1, assumes you understand what the person means by 'hears' God.
    What other reason is there?
    1, (your example) a person can literally hear voices in his head
    2, a person can 'listen' for God by paying attention to what is going on around him looking for clues that god is trying to tell him something.
    3, a person can believe that the advice he is getting from his friend is a message from God..(not saying the friend believes this..)
    4, a person can just get a feeling that God wants him to do something..

    all of these and more can be considered 'hearing God'
    Exactly. Whether they hear it physically of mentally, they still believe they are receiving a message from god/jesus/whomever. just like a schizophrenic. With no proof of it being real.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    2, what do you mean 'speaks'?
    Well religious people pray and worship.
    LOOKOUT!! there is a guy praying in the school! call the cops!
    gimme a break dude..
    Poor show, doesn't follow.
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    you are using praying and worshiping as an excuse to hate them???
    Not me! You are the only one blandishing hate here.
    To paraphrase Jesus' statement "love the sinner, hate the sin." it's a case of "love the religious, hate the delusion."
    that is like the most docile thing a religionist can do..come on..you can do better..

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    speaks to God or speaks for God? (why would you assume he speaks For God??)
    Because every religious person SPAG's (Self Projection as God) Self projection as god - RationalWiki
    again what is the harm in speaking to God??
    just another excuse?
    Nothing if it doesn't cause the person to harm others. Which does tend to happen an awful lot.
    Take a schizophrenic for instance it causes great harm to them and to people around them, sometimes very serious harm.

    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    4, so then why you bitchin about it?
    Because I am a humanist and I can see what this delusion does to my fellow man.
    yea and i see ALOT more important delusions to be concered about..most coming from the lawmakers,politicians and anyone who is in charge of other employee's...
    either way believing in God is NOT a delusion.if you think it is then YOU are deluding yourself.
    Imbecilic!


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by me
    "In what way can you demonstrate whether the voice of god is real?"
    Its not my job to tell you what to believe.
    you gotta figure that out for yourself.
    Cop out! You know you can't demonstrate it, and you know it isn't rational.
    I know i can't prove what/who/where God is in my life..but that does not make me irrational.
    No the delusion does.


    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    ]quote]
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Now back to :
    Aren't we talking about intelligent theists, then surely they can discern the objective from the subjective.
    so now you are saying that if their evidence for their belief is subjective then they are delusional??
    Bang on, after all what is subjective evidence, it is evidence that pertains to you and you alone. You cannot demonstrate it to anybody else, therefore it cannot be shown to be anything else but imagination. That is faith not evidence, which is delusional. As shown above.
    Last edited by pavlos; January 14th, 2013 at 05:57 PM. Reason: mis-spelling
    A logician saves the life of a tiny space alien. The alien is very grateful and, since she's omniscient, offers the following reward: she offers to answer any question the logician might pose. Without too much thought (after all, he's a logician), he asks: "What is the best question to ask and what is the correct answer to that question?" The tiny alien pauses. Finally she replies, "The best question is the one you just asked; and the correct answer is the one I gave."
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    Maybe I have not explain myself clearly enough, but a rational statement(a construction, a logical thread of boolean logic), is not a belief.
    Correct. But since the conversation had moved onto "what is a belief?" then posting about statements is hardly relevant.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    No, not for deciding between what is rational from what is not.
    Really? When it comes to belief (which IS the general topic)?
    Try answering ths one without calling on evidence: belief in god correct.
    Without looking at the evidence (or lack thereof) it can't be said whether that belief is rational or not.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    But since the conversation had moved onto "what is a belief?" then posting about statements is hardly relevant.

    Without looking at the evidence (or lack thereof) it can't be said whether that belief is rational or not.
    I don't think I can you use fewer words so you may understand what I meant, but:
    NO belief is rational. No axiom is rational. Believing in logic is NOT rational. It is a belief/leap of faith. It turns out to be useful for rational construction (it is the definition/basis of it). The derived evidence is that logic exist/is witnessed is book full of rational thinking.
    God also work like that, but with bad/weak logic. Anyway those who use it also witness its use(fullness) and witness/measure its evidence, in books or culture.

    From the rational point of view, evidences of various deïty and various god rules (had hoc not very logical) and usage can also be witnessed, but interpreted trough a rational process.

    It is a stupid things to write but I don't believe in beliefs, except from the above statement point of view (the rational one).
    Never try to prove that God(the supposed entity) does not exist, you CAN'T, not rationally. The inverse is also true. Skip the question, it is a mind trap
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    NO belief is rational.
    So, to use my earlier example, it's irrational to believe my friends like me?
    It's irrational to believe that the local shop will have food available for me to buy the next time I go? Etc...
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    The only choice I ever made about losing faith was when I finally decided to accept that pretending to myself that I believed something I didn't wasn't very conductive behavior - my choice was just to stop lying to myself, rather than choosing to change my actual beliefs
    That is where I agree with MNSquirrel you made a new choice, because you construct one (by yourself or being shown to it). I've done it too, and I don't regret it

    Quote Originally Posted by Kompi View Post
    In some ways, I think one could probably make a very good case for the idea that religious belief might actually represent an attempt of ours - however unconsciously so - at trying to both channel and control a great deal of these kinds of urges to allow us to build a stable, larger society to begin with.
    You've reinvent something close to meme. And the rational theory is that they evolve just like gene, by mutation/selection, and they use us more than the contrary. We may be rats in nature's lab, finally
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    That is where I agree with MNSquirrel you made a new choice, because you construct one (by yourself or being shown to it). I've done it too, and I don't regret it
    Well I think that's something we'll just have to agree to disagree on, then, really; for me it's scarcely the only belief I can't actually directly affect, though I have somewhat a better case for my conviction on some of the other ones. I generally tend to hold that most of our common sense intuition about how our minds work is actually very mistaken, even in cases that we can't actually show yet - belief being one of those areas. I am somewhat expecting neuroscience to prove me right in due time, but I suppose we'll just have to wait and hope we live to see.

    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    You've reinvent something close to meme. And the rational theory is that they evolve just like gene, by mutation/selection, and they use us more than the contrary. We may be rats in nature's lab, finally
    Evolutionary processes have worked well for us in the past, so why stop now?
    Your intuition can deceive you - don't trust it.
     

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