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Thread: Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence

  1. #1 Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence 
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    A question for the believers out there...

    How come the VAST majority of higher intelligent, the educated elite tend to be atheist? There are many polls and studies showing that for example university professors out of maybe 200 there would be 190 atheists...

    Rhetorically,

    Barry


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    The world is becoming atheist. There is also a strong correlation between atheism/intelligence/rejection. I don't think I need to go into detail here as to how many people that are into atheism and go about it insulting religion as they claim religion damages society.

    I seriously think you touched a nerve here, red hot topic away...

    PS the atheism/intelligence/rejection thing is a counter statement to the OP title. It will show atheists how religious people will feel when they read the title, learn from that so you can understand each other .


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    How about the fact that this is just plain nonsense. It is true that polls reveal that the percentage of proffessors that are atheist tends to be higher than the percentage of the public at large which are atheist.

    One 2006 study I found said 31.2 percent said "none" in the answer to the question about a religious preference, but only 10% selected a choice of "I don't believe in God" while 13.4% selected "“I don’t
    know whether there is a God, and I don’t believe there is any way to find out" on the same question. This was compared to the public at large which gave only 2.8% selecting "I don't believe in God" while 4.1% selected "“I don’t know whether there is a God, and I don’t believe there is any way to find out"

    I think that these numbers make it clear that the Christians who say this is the result of a conspiracy are being ridiculous. So I would say that there is definitely a causal relationship here. Obviously those with some academic training are quite a bit more likely to develop the rational skills required for a skeptical examination of the claims of religion. But I think it is also clear that the development of these skills are a long long way from making religious belief untenable.


    So yeah the 90% of the religious are dumb as horse puke and the average atheist is significantly more intellegent. But a little application of these rational skills and the art of skepticism will reveal that unless one is a professor, this difference in the average intellegence does not mean that being an atheist means one is more intellegent. In fact, I can say from personal experience that there are still quite a few atheists that are also dumb as horse puke. LOL


    The above was said with a little tounge in cheek. In my experience, intellegence is a relative thing. For example, is the fact that I have an MS in physics an example of intellegence or stupidity? A look at my bank account might suggest the latter. I think the truth is that people each have their own kind of genius in the things that they invest their life in. The differences between people is really much more a matter of what things people value and care about rather than about innate abilities.
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    Barry starts this thread with a question:

    How come the VAST majority of higher intelligent, the educated elite tend to be atheist? There are many polls and studies showing that for example university professors out of maybe 200 there would be 190 atheists...
    First of all, Barry is going to have to provide some of these many polls and studies which indicate this kind of statistic.

    A not too long ago study located at http://www.livescience.com/strangene...tists_god.html indicates that approximately two-thirds of all scientists, natural and social, are believers in God. I do not know if this is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, or just some God. This is as compared to last year’s study by Newsweek magazine that showed 91 percent of the people in America are believers of some sort. It also showed three percent atheists. Somehow it just does not add up that the VAST majority of higher intelligent and educated elite could come from just three percent of the population.

    In contrast, studies in Europe show much larger percentages of non-believers. World wide, 16 percent (mostly in Europe and Australia) profess atheism.

    If the vast majority of college professors are, indeed, atheists, one must begin to wonder what that implies. Since we can assume that a sizeable portion of scientists are college professors – ala Mitchell McCain – then we must assume that they mostly come from the two thirds of scientists who do not believe. Mitchell excepted, this brings up the old bromide: Them that can do, do; them that can’t do, teach.

    Next we have the problem that there are many, many small colleges and university in America which are religiously sponsored schools who just naturally attract believing professors. It just seems highly unlikely that they could make up only five percent (10 out of 200 as Barry suggests) of the university professors in America.

    This does not speak well for Barry’s intelligence and ability to think things through before making an outlandish (totally non factual) statement. Maybe his brings down the average for atheists.

    Even so, there is a modicum of truth in Barry’s implication – that atheists are better educated than Religious people. Another study in that other thread pointed out that the less religious people seem to be in higher income brackets and are thus, more likely to be able to get an education. (One could conclude this is because they are unscrupulous people who have no compunction about screwing their religious customers and clients.) Thus, it is not education which creates atheists, but rather, it is atheists who get education. Heck, I was an atheist when I went to college.

    Barry's contention is just contrary to fact.
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    @mitchellmckain:"90% of the religious are dumb as horse puke" thats the most ignorant thing Ive heard all day. Im not arguing for or against religion but 90% of the world is religious so multiplied by your statistic that would make 81% of the world "dumb as horse puke" thats not even factoring in the non-religious. And sorry but those numbers don't fly. Before you say something anti-religious remember that most of history's great thinkers believed in a greater deity.

    daytonturner, your last paragraph is completely unfounded. If you believe atheists are both better educated and have more money than you must not know many rich people. I attended a private catholic high school and everyone but a few of the kids and their parents were all very rich, religious and very smart. So I doubt any study saying that the rich are less religious.

    As for the claim that 190/200 professors are atheists that number is ridiculous. The world average is only ~3% atheist for the entire population and based on the people Ive met at university so far I wouldn't put that number higher among intelligent people. Also based on my experience people don't stay atheist for very long so it'd be interesting to see beliefs of the "intelligent" divided into age groups.
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    This whole thread is irrelevant, because intelligence varies on many things, not just if you're atheist or theist.

    Quote Originally Posted by kingjacob
    @mitchellmckain:"90% of the religious are dumb as horse puke" thats the most ignorant thing Ive heard all day. Im not arguing for or against religion but 90% of the world is religious so multiplied by your statistic that would make 81% of the world "dumb as horse puke" thats not even factoring in the non-religious. And sorry but those numbers don't fly. Before you say something anti-religious remember that most of history's great thinkers believed in a greater deity.
    Most people are stupid, whether they be religious or not. Just turn on your TV.
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    It's just the atheist's means of feeling special about himself.

    You know how some religious people might say, "My religion is right and therefore I'm spiritually superior to you".

    Or how fortune tellers say, "I have unlocked man's latent prescient abilities, therefore I am a special human being".

    So an atheist says, "I am an atheist and therefore must be more intelligent than you. I am superior."
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    Haha There's definitely a correlation!
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingjacob
    Im not arguing for or against religion but 90% of the world is religious so multiplied by your statistic that would make 81% of the world "dumb as horse puke" thats not even factoring in the non-religious.
    And your problem with this conclusion is...?

    Please note that Mitchell's claim that 81% of the world are as "dumb as horse puke" translates into "81% of the world are as dumb as a non-existent phenomena", for horses cannot vomit.
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  11. #10  
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    Religions are essentially cults. And, those who belong to these cults have been indoctrinated from birth, which is child abuse.

    Those who realize that they've been abused throughout their childhood and indoctrinated into these cults will begin to understand the fairy tales being told, the doctrines of the cult, are complete nonsense.

    The question is do these individuals who break this vicious cycle of abuse have more intelligence than the rest?

    Perhaps it's more along the lines of identifying snakeoil.
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  12. #11  
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    (q) rants:

    Religions are essentially cults. And, those who belong to these cults have been indoctrinated from birth, which is child abuse.
    This form of presentation is called a glittering generality in which one takes a quality that may apply to a small portion of a group and applies it to the entire group. All Scots have red hair, for example.

    I have no idea what (q) means by "cults" or how such a term can be applied to all religion. Without (q) explaining his understanding of cult, it is difficult to determine if he is expressing a word that has the same significance to other people. However, it is true that some cults do have a religious basis.

    It may also be true that in some societies, young people are "indoctrinated" with the religion of that society. This would be especially true where religion is the basis of government.

    This is most nearly universal in countries which have religion as the basis of their government. This could hardly be true of communist based countries such as China or the former Soviet Union which produced most of the present adults in the former union countries.

    It is also not true on a generalized basis in Europe or America where the major "indoctrination" takes place in the public education systems. These can hardly be accused of being purveyors of religious thought. If anything, they are anti-religious.

    So while some religious groups may have some sort of cult status based on the general definition of cult, such a term cannot legitimately be applied to most religious groups.

    (q) would be more effective if he pointed out actual instances as opposed to such wildly inapplicable generalities. Perhaps (q) should not attribute his own life experience to every other person on earth.
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    The God Delusion ?chap 4, has a bit about this, and he states the exact figures and study title. If you really want to I can find the exact details.

    Barry
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I have no idea what (q) means by "cults" or how such a term can be applied to all religion.
    Actually, every religion started out as a cult and has been later called religion (perhaps because of increasing members which in turn made whatever claim the cult/religion made more plausible?). I presume the term "religion" makes it somewhat more "truthful." I mean, how can so many people be wrong, right?
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner

    This form of presentation is called a glittering generality in which one takes a quality that may apply to a small portion of a group and applies it to the entire group. All Scots have red hair, for example.
    Actually, it's exactly: All theists believe in god.

    I have no idea what (q) means by "cults" or how such a term can be applied to all religion. Without (q) explaining his understanding of cult, it is difficult to determine if he is expressing a word that has the same significance to other people. However, it is true that some cults do have a religious basis.
    Dayton may have lost his dictionary, or simply doesn't like the term 'cult' although the terms religion and cult are interchangeable.

    It may also be true that in some societies, young people are "indoctrinated" with the religion of that society. This would be especially true where religion is the basis of government.
    It's relevant to anyone whose religion is that of their parents.

    This is most nearly universal in countries which have religion as the basis of their government. This could hardly be true of communist based countries such as China or the former Soviet Union which produced most of the present adults in the former union countries.

    It is also not true on a generalized basis in Europe or America where the major "indoctrination" takes place in the public education systems. These can hardly be accused of being purveyors of religious thought. If anything, they are anti-religious.
    Strawmen. Theists always confuse education with indoctrination as they have no idea how to distinguish the two as their decision-making processes are based on their cults doctrines. They believe they are "educated" in their cults doctrines and are "indoctrinated" by the schools they attend.

    So while some religious groups may have some sort of cult status based on the general definition of cult, such a term cannot legitimately be applied to most religious groups.
    Abrahamism is a cult, based on the definition of cult. Spin it how you wish, Dayton.
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    obviously said:
    Actually, every religion started out as a cult and has been later called religion (perhaps because of increasing members which in turn made whatever claim the cult/religion made more plausible?). I presume the term "religion" makes it somewhat more "truthful." I mean, how can so many people be wrong, right?
    Well, again, we have the problem of lacking a common definition of cult and what connotation one is attaching to the word.

    Obviosly seems to be using the term more to denote a group within a group which has come up with an idea which is different from the thinking of the base group. And, in that sense, I suppose almost any group in society, religious or not, has a cultish type of basis. I think you could include the NAACP, the ICLU, or SPCA. These are not religious organizations but came into being as the result of "different" thinking. So, in that sense, I would not particularly object to the idea that most religions have similar origins.

    However, without actual knowledge, it is diffcult to swallow that "every" religion started that way. I have no idea of the roots of the Mayan or Aztec religions or of the many religions which may have come and gone without our even knowing about them today. However, I see no problem with something starting out in cultish form and becoming mainstream. The same things have happened in politics. The early American revolutionaries were of such ilk with their dogmas of freedom and liberty. A lot of life is based on someone with an idea convincing others that it is a good one.

    This is as opposed to (q)'s use of the term "cult" as a pajoritive, denoting a group of fanatics who practice outlandish dogmatism. While this may be true of some religious organizations it is equally true of some non religious organizations. The former SLA (Symbionese Liberation Army) or the current ELF (Environmental Liberation Front) which had no particular religious significance at all are and were terrorist organizations based on fanatical unorthodox dogmas.

    It is really silly to speak in such generalities because all it takes is one exception to refute the argument.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    This is as opposed to (q)'s use of the term "cult" as a pajoritive, denoting a group of fanatics who practice outlandish dogmatism.
    Yes, Dayton did in fact lose his dictionary.

    While this may be true of some religious organizations it is equally true of some non religious organizations. The former SLA (Symbionese Liberation Army) or the current ELF (Environmental Liberation Front) which had no particular religious significance at all are and were terrorist organizations based on fanatical unorthodox dogmas.
    Sounds just like Abrahamism, Dayton.

    It is really silly to speak in such generalities because all it takes is one exception to refute the argument.[/quote]

    One you have yet to provide.
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    (q) is just going to have to provide his own definition of cult. The definition is supplied is from my dictionary.

    I do not belong to a cult, but to a long established evangelical denomination which does not indoctrinate but attempts to educate people as to their need for salvation in order to receive God's mercy at the day of judgment rather than being subjected to His wrath.

    This is the same way in which our public education system does not indoctrinate but merely attempts to teach our children that religion is silliness.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingjacob
    @mitchellmckain:"90% of the religious are dumb as horse puke" thats the most ignorant thing Ive heard all day.
    Well since I am one of the religious, I can say that such ignorance comes natural to those who are dumb as a donkey's upchuck.

    Besides some of our atheist friends here are rather sensitive about their intellectual prowess and I uh felt I had to do something to soften the blow if I was going to make that make that personal observation about particular atheists I have encountered. The real point of my comment, however, was to inject a little realism into this proud atheist quoting statistics.
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I do not belong to a cult, but to a long established evangelical denomination which does not indoctrinate but attempts to educate people as to their need for salvation in order to receive God's mercy at the day of judgment rather than being subjected to His wrath.

    This is the same way in which our public education system does not indoctrinate but merely attempts to teach our children that religion is silliness.
    Thank you for demonstrating my point so succinctly and successfully, Dayton.
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  21. #20 Re: Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence 
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    This might be of interest: Why are there more atheist scientists than religious ones?

    How come the VAST majority of higher intelligent, the educated elite tend to be atheist? There are many polls and studies showing that for example university professors out of maybe 200 there would be 190 atheists...
    As for this...does anyone else want to eat this for me? (All you regulars know my position by now...) I'm already dismantling too many threads...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Quote Originally Posted by kingjacob
    Im not arguing for or against religion but 90% of the world is religious so multiplied by your statistic that would make 81% of the world "dumb as horse puke" thats not even factoring in the non-religious.
    And your problem with this conclusion is...?

    Please note that Mitchell's claim that 81% of the world are as "dumb as horse puke" translates into "81% of the world are as dumb as a non-existent phenomena", for horses cannot vomit.
    @white.

    @ophiolite: l would hope more than 19% of the world is smarter than "puke" but the real problem I have is that people think because you are an atheist or theist you have some type of intellectuall superiority when this is simply not true. You can neither prove not disprove "God". You can develop logic based hypothesis but until you can come up with real proof for or against, theology remains a personal choice and not a fact.

    I could care less if 99% of the "intelligent" don't believe in god, science and philosophy should seek truth not follow popular majority. Plus when thinking of all the truly great thinkers of history, none of them believed that no higher being existed, they just questioned and denied the "God" defined by common religion.
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    (q)'s discussion technique reminds me of the story of the mother discussing her children's marriages with a friend.

    "My daughter married the most wonderful man in the world," she tells the friend. "He cooks the meals and does the dishes. He takes care of the laundry and vacuums the house and even takes the garbage out. She hardly ever has to lift a hand around the housel"

    "My son, on the other hand, married the most dispicable woman on earth. He has to cook the meal and do the dishes. Then he has to do the laundry and vacuuming and always has to take out the garbage. She hardly ever lifts a hand around the house."
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    The statistics show clearly that Atheists are generally more intelligent or atleast capable of objective thinking when it comes to looking at things wheras the vast majority of religious folk simple follow the pack and believe what they're told.

    Barry
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    I'm curious how one determines the intelligence of another...

    More so, I'm curious how it is determined that someone who believes in God (or any deity) is less intelligent than one who doesn't.

    Third, I'm curious as to what defines a theist, vs an atheist in this exploration.


    Lastly, don't say "The statistics show clearly" without giving some links to the sources!
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    Barry blithers:
    The statistics show clearly that Atheists are generally more intelligent or atleast capable of objective thinking when it comes to looking at things wheras the vast majority of religious folk simple follow the pack and believe what they're told.
    Well, Barry, one would never even suspect such a thing by reading most of the postings by atheists on this forum. You seem to be making a claim of something you wish were true and would like to believe to justify your atheism but have no substantiation for. Even if this were true, you would be bringing down the average for the atheists. Oh, maybe you were not included in the "statistics."

    I sincerely doubt anyone has ever conducted a study which shows what you are claiming here. You and (q) are both very good at making outlandish claims which are not backed by any authortative studies or polls. What? We are suppose to just take your unsubstantiated word? You have made a statement and it is up to you to prove it.

    What is it that religious folk believe and are being told that constitutes following the pack? What it actually looks like is you have heard some one say something you like, and have followed the pack by repeating it.

    If you have any authoritative studies which show the basis or such statistics, you would be well advised to reveal them. Otherwise, you are doing little more than blowing steam out your you-know-what.
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    I sincerely doubt anyone has ever conducted a study which shows what you are claiming here. You and (q) are both very good at making outlandish claims which are not backed by any authortative studies or polls. What? We are suppose to just take your unsubstantiated word? You have made a statement and it is up to you to prove it.
    Is it just me or does this sound EXTREMELY similar to religion as a whole and faith it in god himself...?

    Barry

    Ok so the study is the following straight out of the God Delusion by Richard Dawkins

    Members of the ''Fellows of the Royal Society'' in the (UK I'll assume) were each sent out a questionaire asking how strongly thy believe in god on a scale of 1 to 7 (1 being Strongly believe and 7 strongly disbelieve).
    For the sake of easier numbers, both 1 and 2 would class as a theist and 6 and 7 would class as atheist.

    Out of the 1074 that received the email, about 23% responded (good for a study like this).
    At the end of it, 213 were class as unbelievers and a mere 12 as believers.

    The paper itself is by R. Elisabeth Cornwell and Michael Stirrat 2006. (no title given as it was a work in progress at time of print).

    The above facts from the elite scientists of the National Academy and the Royal Society show that posesses a high degree of intelligence and an objective mind will make disbelief in god a 95% probability.
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    I must also clarify my viewpoint as being atheist for the sole reason that religion has done nothing for me whatsoever apart from waste precious seconds of my life which will never be returned to me and all in the name of ''outlandish claims'' to quote Dayton...
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    My above comments still standing unanswered...

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Flannery
    I must also clarify my viewpoint as being atheist for the sole reason that religion has done nothing for me whatsoever apart from waste precious seconds of my life which will never be returned to me and all in the name of ''outlandish claims'' to quote Dayton...
    Perhaps, then, you define "theism" as following a particular religion (such as Catholic, Methodist, Islam, etc).

    If that is the case, then in your viewpoint I am more atheist, since I do not follow any particular religion.

    However, I do lean towards the idea that life has some sort of meaningful purpose, and to that end have been continually exploring the idea of both the afterlife, and the divine.

    I'm not sure how that fits into such a definition of atheist or theist.


    As for outlandish claims, perhaps having success in exploring a subject such as God or the afterlife, involves having the intelligence to weed the more worthwhile concepts from the expected "garbage" of human influence.

    I, being intelligent, cannot dispute any claims of what will happen to my soul, because I so far have not been able to prove that it does, or does not exist. Nor can I determine the afterlife. It's just not possible for a worldly being. Deny it or accept it, it doesn't matter, because nobody, neither side, has any flip'n clue.

    At the same time, I can theorize how ideas of the divine can harmonize with the physical world which we explore through science. I have yet to see any reason which excludes one from the other, so until I do, I will not presume to be knowledgeable enough to decide one way or the other.


    As for wasting time, that's a relative concept.

    Exploring religion (apart from faith) and discovering it doesn't suit you, isn't exactly a waste of time, is it? Exploring it is essential to determining its worth.

    Then, of course, if you choose to believe nothing beyond the physical, that essentially there is no overall meaning or purpose outside of the perpetuation of matter and chemicals, then your "wasted time" is meaningless, as is its determination.


    I'll save any further comment until after I've heard back from my questions posted above:


    I'm curious how one determines the intelligence of another...

    More so, I'm curious how it is determined that someone who believes in God (or any deity) is less intelligent than one who doesn't.

    Third, I'm curious as to what defines a theist, vs an atheist in this exploration.
    Oh, and I'm still waiting on the links to the statistics...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf
    I'm curious how one determines the intelligence of another...

    More so, I'm curious how it is determined that someone who believes in God (or any deity) is less intelligent than one who doesn't.

    Third, I'm curious as to what defines a theist, vs an atheist in this exploration.


    Lastly, don't say "The statistics show clearly" without giving some links to the sources!
    I have always believed intelligence was measured by ones ability to reason. Of course thats not the easiest thing to measure.

    An atheist by definition is one who does not believe in a God while a theist does believe in one. It has always been my experience that most of those who claim to be atheists actually believe in a God they have just been put off by the institution of religion and don't realize God and religion are not one. I have yet to meet someone who is a real atheist and truly believes no higher power exists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingjacob
    I have always believed intelligence was measured by ones ability to reason. Of course thats not the easiest thing to measure.
    Intelligence is a very tricky thing to measure. Intelligence is something that I don't think is strictly quantifiable. Especially when one considers that most methods by which "intelligence" are measured, are effected by the individual's experiences and position, and not their actual capacity for "intelligence."

    Quote Originally Posted by kingjacob
    An atheist by definition is one who does not believe in a God while a theist does believe in one. It has always been my experience that most of those who claim to be atheists actually believe in a God they have just been put off by the institution of religion and don't realize God and religion are not one. I have yet to meet someone who is a real atheist and truly believes no higher power exists.
    I think one of the best answers I've ever heard for a person claiming to be an atheist, is that they chose not to engage in the subject because they didn't know what to believe. That's probably more a call for an agnostic than an atheist, but it at leasts shows some thought. If one hasn't made a determination as to which direction to take into believing, then it probably holds true that they haven't yet believed in anything yet.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner

    I sincerely doubt anyone has ever conducted a study which shows what you are claiming here. You and (q) are both very good at making outlandish claims which are not backed by any authortative studies or polls. What? We are suppose to just take your unsubstantiated word? You have made a statement and it is up to you to prove it.
    The hypocrite speaks. How many fairy tale claims have YOU made? Were we supposed to have taken YOUR unsubstantiated word for those claims, too?

    What is it that religious folk believe and are being told that constitutes following the pack?
    Superstitions and myths, of course, in the form of doctrines.

    If you have any authoritative studies which show the basis or such statistics, you would be well advised to reveal them. Otherwise, you are doing little more than blowing steam out your you-know-what.
    Show the statistics behind virgin births and resurrections? Or, the latest numbers on angels and demons?

    Anything?
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  33. #32 Re: Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Flannery
    A question for the believers out there...

    How come the VAST majority of higher intelligent, the educated elite tend to be atheist? There are many polls and studies showing that for example university professors out of maybe 200 there would be 190 atheists...

    Rhetorically,

    Barry
    Apparently even atheists need to believe in something
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  34. #33 Re: Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence 
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    Quote Originally Posted by samcdkey
    Apparently even atheists need to believe in something
    Sometimes.... only sometimes...

    But ...

    ...sometimes the quality of desperation to it is quite astounding.


    I do think however that the same is true of some religious. This suggests to me examples of what Scott Peck experienced, which was that the unhealthy ways people are thinking are sometimes best resolved by a turn towards religion and sometimes best resolved by a turn away from religion.

    Not that this makes the case for either the theist or the atheist, because this state of affairs most likely comes from presumptions and ways of thinking buried deep within the psyche. Which only means that the debate moves to the question of which of these buried presumptions are actually true and which are false.
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    Barry sites a study:

    Out of the 1074 that received the email, about 23% responded (good for a study like this). At the end of it, 213 were class (sic) as unbelievers and a mere 12 as believers.
    Barry adds that he read it in Richard Dawkins’ book who was, in turn, citing the findings of an unpublished study. Sounds a lot to me like Barry is doing exactly what he criticizes religious people of doing – following and believing what someone else has said that someone else said. Oh, and by the way, it appears this is still a work in progress as it has received mention only in Dawkins’ book. Maybe it has not been found by any publisher to be credible?

    But, OK, I do have to back down from my suspicion that there are “no” studies which purport to show atheists to be more intelligent.

    Statistics like this (skimpy though they are) can be interpreted to mean pretty much whatever you want them to mean.

    I would suggest that this study could show that 861 non-respondents were believers who were smart enough not to respond to what they recognized as a loaded questionnaire. At the very least, the study could be used to show that non-believers are more willing to express their opinion in that environment than are believers.

    This was a questionnaire which was divided into seven degrees of belief and the results were boiled down to two polarized conclusions. The questionnaire asked respondents to reply on a seven point scale with 1 being complete agreement and 7 being total disagreement. The question discussed (one of several on the questionnaire) was whether the respondent believed in a personal god.

    The first two degrees were deemed to be believers and the final two degrees were considered atheists. We do not know how the other three degrees were counted. I would suspect, from the results, that they were also considered non-believers. There are many people (such as Einstein) who believe in some form of superior essense but who do not believe in a personal God. If they were counted as non-believers, it would certainly stack the results in favor of non-believers.

    I return to the 2005 study found at http://www.livescience.com/strangene...tists_god.html which had a far higher participation sample and showed that approximately two thirds of all scientists in the U.S. are believers.

    I think most studies show that believers are a higher percentage of the more highly educated people. However, most studies will also show that a higher percentage of non-believers obtain higher education. The cause and effect here is not that education creates non believers but that a higher percentage of non believers obtain higher education.

    This is born out in the most recent studies which show that seven percent of the population of the U.S. has no belief whatsoever in a supernatural God while 33 percent of all scientists are non believers. These numbers seem somewhat unreasonable in that it seems highly unlikely that only seven percent of the population could make up one third of the scientists. But without seeing the actual studies, knowing the sample populations, and how questions were phrased, it is very difficult to explain such apparent discrepancies.

    When you look at statistics, the greater the participation and the more diverse the sample population, the more likely to be valid the test is. I doubt you could take a poll of ditch diggers and say that represents the entire population. Nor can you take the effete, er, Elite Royal Society and say it represents the entirety of academia.

    The sample population has a tremendous effect on results. For example, a religious study taken in Iowa or Alabama would have vastly different results than the same study conducted here in the Pacific Northwest. If the study Barry sites had been taken in a Muslim country, I suspect the results would have been exactly the opposite or maybe would have shown 100 percent believers.

    I am a great believer in the old Benjamin Disraeli bromide that there are three kinds of lies: Lies, damn lies, and statistics.

    While just looking around around at stuff, I found this study which says Germans are smartest people in in Europe http://news.softpedia.com/news/Germa...ns-20341.shtml. I’m sure all the non-German Europeans are going to accept this as gospel – that they are stupid when compared to Germans.
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    Is this thread still going on
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    When you look at statistics, the greater the participation and the more diverse the sample population, the more likely to be valid the test is. ...

    The sample population has a tremendous effect on results. ...
    Nice post, btw.

    Just to add a thought I had at the moment, it comes to me that it is quite possible religion is being accused a little callously, here. (This is not an attempt to prove religion is anything...right, wrong, whatever...)

    What I mean, is, when I see someone who I guess could be called "nutty religious person" or whatever, I'm sure something in the personality and disposition made them more inclined to "fall" into the trap. (By trap, I guess I mean the "moronic" parts of religious behaviors.)

    For example, when someone falls for a practical joke, we might say they are gullible. Does the joke make them gullible? Or were they gullible before, and their gullibility caused them to fall for the joke?

    I guess what I'm saying is that, while it may be possible to use the following of religion as a measure for the traits of an individual, I don't think it can be so easily said that the religion was the cause.

    Further, given the HUGE scale of the subject of "religion" and its obvious implications, it may be very much less than unsurprising that its a marker for the traits which we may or may not associate with intelligence.

    That said, I also believe that there's a certain percentage of the people we label as "religious nuts" who aren't actually as nutty as they appear to be. I'm sure everyone has come across someone who either didn't know how to argue a point correctly, or didn't have great oration skills, or was just confused and trying to find their place in the world. I personally think that in those cases, it's better to be helpful, than simply label them as nuts and call them stupid. I'm not sure where or when an acerbic attitude became a trait of intelligence... :?
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    Well, I'm not all that sure that "intelligence" is everything it is cracked up to be. I have lost the links, but a couple of things I noticed in researching intelligence were: it was suggested that intelligent people are the most unhappy, they are more likely to commit suicide, they are among the least liked and a couple of other negative things I don't quite recall what were.

    Besides, the Bible does not put much of a premium on intelligence or knowledge so much as it does on wisdom. The most intelligent person with the most knowledge is worthless without the wisdom to use it.

    I found it interesting at a reunion of my high school class that the valedictorian and salutatorian of our class were not successful in life. One of them was drug dependent and the other was also messed up.

    The most successful people from our class were the ones who had the best people skills. Some were involved in sales. Perhaps the most successful was a guy who barely got through high school and who started as a laborer in a manufacturing business and worked his way up to plant manager.

    Meanwhile, another person from the class who was not even in the top 20 percent gradewise, is a member of MENSA. But he has had a lot of trouble all his life with intimate relationships. I, myself, have a doctorate degree (the only one in my class) but have never amounted to much. I am not rich, famous or successful. So much for advance degrees.

    If I had my choice among intelligence, knowledge or wisdom, I would choose wisdom. Alas, I have it not.

    So maybe intelligence is little more than a bragging right. Perhaps it is really true that ignorance is bliss.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Well, I'm not all that sure that "intelligence" is everything it is cracked up to be. I have lost the links, but a couple of things I noticed in researching intelligence were: it was suggested that intelligent people are the most unhappy, they are more likely to commit suicide, they are among the least liked and a couple of other negative things I don't quite recall what were.
    Certainly a good point. I've known plenty of people who weren't of high-education who were perfectly happy, and plenty who were "thinkers" who spent too much of their time over-analyzing the world.

    Then again, perhaps intelligence works both ways. Perhaps being intelligent is more about finding a balance between having all the answers, and having none. The give with the take.

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Besides, the Bible does not put much of a premium on intelligence or knowledge so much as it does on wisdom. The most intelligent person with the most knowledge is worthless without the wisdom to use it.
    I think it does, but the wording is different. We need a more concise definition of intelligence, knowledge, and wisdom. I think wisdom is having knowledge combined with the intelligence to use it appropriately. That's not much of an answer, but then again I don't think any of those words are really easy to define.

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Meanwhile, another person from the class who was not even in the top 20 percent gradewise, is a member of MENSA.
    MENSA drives me crazy. I simply won't agree to belong to a society that will "have me as a member" based on a set of criteria which I think is wholly bogus and asinine to begin with...

    As for the grade percentage, that I can sympathize with. I never saw the value in jumping through textbook hoops. I knew kids in my classes in grade school that were dumb as a box of rocks, but they got straight A's. Their whole focus was in solving the problems in the math book, and that's all they were graded on. They never learned to think, they just learned to jump through that particular hoop. Whatever it took to get that A, and nothing more.

    In college some of that carried over. I rarely did what I was supposed to, but it wasn't because I couldn't, or because I was out goofing off. Instead, I was the one conversing with the professors and instructors in-line-with or outside of the day's lesson. I knew more about the subjects we studied, and could speak more to-it, than anyone in the class, and I could hold my own against (against or with) the professor in a conversation. To me, that seemed more important than monkeying through busywork. Sure, in my astronomy degree I learned how to calculate all kinds of great equations for light and physics, and all that wonderful mathematical junk. But for me, all those equations and hoops were just boring. It was more important to get the concept right, than the calculus behind it. I wanted to know about the machine and how it worked. I didn't care about the screws and how to use a screwdriver, that was a part of the machine but not the machine itself. I think by the end of my college career I was so neck-deep in solar mechanics, black hole theories, physics theories, and the Drake Equation, that I probably wandered around more like a grad student than anything else.

    In retrospect, jumping through the hoops was important, since if you let things go too much the school stopped liking you. I never got to that point, but some more A's probably wouldn't have hurt, either. :P

    Then again, none of that really matters, since all the professional world cares about is the piece of paper. You just need that one big hoop, and once you've jumped through it and got your diploma, yer good to go. (Well, good to go, and about 100k poorer, :P )

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    But he has had a lot of trouble all his life with intimate relationships.
    Intelligence doesn't make one more suitable...although that's probably not really accurate.

    I think when someone (like myself perhaps) is an intellectual, their own interests can often lead to a rather shallow concern for relationships. It's so easy to become wrapped up in one's own individual independence when there's a million things to think of and a million projects laying around the home, in the mind, and everywhere in between. At the same time, it's probably also quite possible that those who are highly intellectual, tend to be more picky, as well as more concerned about their own personal free-time. For myself, I have plenty of female friends whom I probably could easily develop a relationship with. Yet at the same time, outside of basic humanistic desires and placations, I'm not really interested in starting a relationship that gets that serious. I don't really want that extra "bother" in my life, because I'm probably not so sure I can handle the bother of my own life let alone two together. That's probably hurt me more than I know. :P

    Perhaps the more intellectual one gets, the narrower their percentage for success becomes in finding a "suitable" mate in life. :?

    On that same note, it could very easily be said that such behavior is a sign of -lack- of intelligence.

    Speaking of intelligence...I think this qualifies as a rant at this point...

    </rant>

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I, myself, have a doctorate degree (the only one in my class) but have never amounted to much. I am not rich, famous or successful. So much for advance degrees.
    It's been my experience (and I've met a LOT of PhD's through my work and hobbies) that aside from fame gathered from some particular major discovery, or from simply being one of the oldest coots in the lot, a PhD doesn't lead to fame or success. Money, only a marginal extent. It's pretty much just a piece of paper that says "I'm an expert in this one very narrow slice of whatever subject I studied." There's definite accomplishment in getting a PhD, but if someone out there is doing it because they think all their ducks will line up once they have it, their wrong.



    I think I just went a bit off-track. Woops...
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    Maybe if we rephrase the topic as There is a higher proportion of atheist in higher-educated population than in the lower-educated population, then it will be more verifiable and agreeable?
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  41. #40 Re: Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Flannery
    A question for the believers out there...

    How come the VAST majority of higher intelligent, the educated elite tend to be atheist? There are many polls and studies showing that for example university professors out of maybe 200 there would be 190 atheists...

    Rhetorically,

    Barry
    VAST majority?
    If there are many polls that indicate that 80% of intellectuals are atheist, perhaps you could indicate one. Then we could examine the basis of this poll and see how accurately it reflects the world intellectual community.
    I vaguely recall some suggestion that american humanities professors are most likely to be atheist while many scientists are theistically inclined, especially those involved in mathmatics - but even then, to argue this as a notable world trend is hogwash.

    Actually what you tend to find is that people have separate personal and professional lives (despite persons like dawkins trying to establish intelligence as contingent on religious inclination)
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  42. #41 Re: Why is Atheism nearly always linked to high intelligence 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Flannery
    A question for the believers out there...

    How come the VAST majority of higher intelligent, the educated elite tend to be atheist? There are many polls and studies showing that for example university professors out of maybe 200 there would be 190 atheists...

    Rhetorically,

    Barry
    I kinda ignored this post but have decided to supply an answer.

    The reason for this is that the atheists study Nature and science, rather than the bible that teaches nothing but the word and evil.
    The animals do not need the bible to tell them what to do.
    And we learn from the animals that have provided us with all the material goodies like planes (birds), submarines (fish), dams (beavers), military tanks (turtles), sonar and radar (bats and dophins), boats (swans, geese and ducks) and other such things.

    So here you have the word verses the pictures.
    You know the old saying.

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Well, I'm not all that sure that "intelligence" is everything it is cracked up to be. I have lost the links, but a couple of things I noticed in researching intelligence were: it was suggested that intelligent people are the most unhappy, they are more likely to commit suicide, they are among the least liked and a couple of other negative things I don't quite recall what were.
    Hence, you've abandoned all possibilities to use intelligence based on that which you don't quite recall.

    Besides, the Bible does not put much of a premium on intelligence or knowledge so much as it does on wisdom. The most intelligent person with the most knowledge is worthless without the wisdom to use it.
    Of course, we wonder where the 'wisdom' would come if not from intelligence and knowledge? Perhaps a premium the bible so conveniently and irrevocably requires as a premise to it's own hypocrisy.

    I found it interesting at a reunion of my high school class that the valedictorian and salutatorian of our class were not successful in life. One of them was drug dependent and the other was also messed up.
    Didn't you know that there are no atheists in foxholes?

    I, myself, have a doctorate degree (the only one in my class) but have never amounted to much. I am not rich, famous or successful. So much for advance degrees.

    If I had my choice among intelligence, knowledge or wisdom, I would choose wisdom. Alas, I have it not.
    The fact that you have never amounted to much does not preclude the significance of intelligence, knowledge and wisdom, but may have more to say about your ability to motivate yourself.

    So maybe intelligence is little more than a bragging right. Perhaps it is really true that ignorance is bliss.
    You certainly are not one to comment on that, based on what you've said thus far. If your failures are to be gauged accurately, then it might be more correct to say 'Lack of motivation is blissful ignorance.'
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    The reason for this is that the atheists study Nature and science...
    Without mentioning the apparent lack of a single theist who's studied nature...as far as I can tell in my experience with the two subjects, the only time the study of nature has come in conflict with the Bible (valid conflict or otherwise) is concerning the origins of life, and the subject of death. I suppose maybe the "Scientologists" would be a bit broader, but then again they're one of the few religious groups I myself would even venture to say are nutcases.

    The study of nature does not demand an atheist disposition. Even if studies showed a reliable statistic of there being more atheist natural scientists than theist natural scientists, I'm not sure what that would prove by itself.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    ...rather than the bible that teaches nothing but the word and evil.
    Can that smack any more of ignorance? Are you drunk or something?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    The animals do not need the bible to tell them what to do.
    One sec...I wanna ask my dog if he's been contemplating the afterlife lately. Or souls. Or the origins of life. Or anything else like that. Then again, all my dog wants to do is eat, sleep, run around, chew his bone, and mate.

    As for my Bible, last time I checked it was gathering dust. Actually, that's not true...I just bought a new bookcase and I think it was one of the books I cleaned off recently. Sure gets a lot of use for something that runs my life.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    And we learn from the animals that have provided us with all the material goodies like planes (birds), submarines (fish), dams (beavers), military tanks (turtles), sonar and radar (bats and dophins), boats (swans, geese and ducks) and other such things.
    If people are using the Bible to figure out how to build cars and subs and such, I'd be surprised. I'm not sure why anyone would think of using the Bible to do any of those things...maybe if they ground it up into pulp for some paper or something, but other than that, I just don't see the point. :?

    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    You certainly are not one to comment on that, based on what you've said thus far. If your failures are to be gauged accurately, then it might be more correct to say 'Lack of motivation is blissful ignorance.'
    So, motivation is the key, not intelligence?
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    C'mon let's have some good statistics, there must be some on the net. Any volunteers to search for it? Barry, as you started the thread it seems fair that you should take on this task :P Saying "read book X" doesn't suffice, as most of us don't have the time to read any book we want.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf
    Edited:
    is concerning the origins of life, and the subject of death.
    So you believe the bibles origins of life and the universe
    some 6 thousand years ago?

    If people are using the Bible to figure out how to build cars and subs and such, I'd be surprised. I'm not sure why anyone would think of using the Bible to do any of those things...maybe if they ground it up into pulp for some paper or something, but other than that, I just don't see the point.:?
    The point here is that Nature teaches a 'constructive' lifestyle rather than a destructive lifestyle like the bible teaches.
    The 1st 3 commandments promote a 'one god concept'.

    So from this premise, we have the communism of the self styled god
    Joseph Stalin, Islams OGC and the current 'new world order' that has established itself as the OGC.

    Throughout history, most wars have been between the various religious factions vying for the OGC.

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    [quote="Wolf"]
    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo

    So, motivation is the key, not intelligence?
    Huh? Wtf are you talking about?
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    Intelligent people are not stupid enough to believe everything they are told to believe.

    They can also see clearly how stupidly people have behaved whilst being led by belief.

    It's called discrimination and discernment, something people prone to 'believing' in a God seem to have little of.

    What causes people to believe in this idea called God, is fear. A fear of existential responsibility and independent thought.

    Atheists are simply people that aren't afraid to think for themselves and don't need to have their ideas confirmed by others. They don't need the safety of the herd.

    And this is what makes them intelligent
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Intelligent people are not stupid enough to believe everything they are told to believe.

    They can also see clearly how stupidly people have behaved whilst being led by belief.

    It's called discrimination and discernment, something people prone to 'believing' in a God seem to have little of.

    What causes people to believe in this idea called God, is fear. A fear of existential responsibility and independent thought.

    Atheists are simply people that aren't afraid to think for themselves and don't need to have their ideas confirmed by others. They don't need the safety of the herd.

    And this is what makes them intelligent
    What a load of crap.

    Translation: "Since we know what is right and are not foolish enough to think we know what is wrong, we are more intellegent. We are the herd of independent thinkers."

    Yeah right! People attribute motivations to others BECAUSE they themselves are motivated by such things. Therefore since you see people as motivated by fear, I can only conclude that this is what motivates you. But I would not assume that this is what motivates most atheists, instead I would assume they are motivated as I am by a process of exploration and discovery about themselves and the world. So the question is, what is it that you are so afraid of?

    The stupidest people in the world learn a little bit and go off half cocked not making the effort to understand the whole thing. It is better to be completely ignorant and know it than that. Their stupidity is exemplified in their assumption that the tiny bit they know is the whole story. The truly intellegent are a little more discerning and a little bit less lazy and more willing to make the effort to comprehend the whole of reality in all of its complexity. Furthermore, the truly intellegent know that all their "original ideas" are based on a foundation of thought that has gone before them, and that those few presumptions they have challenged in their life are but a drop in the bucket compared to those things they have taken for granted. Those who do not study what others have thought and said are doomed to an "orignality" that is really boringly similar to a faceless mass of people all of whom preserve their delusion of orignality only by keeping themselves ignorant of the ideas of others.
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    prasit asked:

    Maybe if we rephrase the topic as There is a higher proportion of atheist in higher-educated population than in the lower-educated population, then it will be more verifiable and agreeable?
    There is a smidgeon of accuracy here if I understand what you are saying. If you are saying that a higher pecentage of atheists have higher educations than the general population, I could agree.

    However, the second half of the statement is somewhat misleading. If every atheist in the U.S. had low education, they still would not make up a large portion of the low educated people. Atheist do not make up a large percentage of any population block, other than perhaps the resident population of this forum. Outside these confines, you guys are really a small minority.

    Here is a discussion of a study about the percentage of academians (in the U.S.) who are believers: http://organizationsandmarkets.com/2...ist-academics/

    This seems to reflect similar information to the Rice study which I pointed to in an earlier post.

    I can say the Bible does not ever suggest that non-believers are stupid or ignorant or uneducated. What it suggests is that they are foolish in that they do not consider the consequences of spending an eternity (forever is a pretty long time) beyond the bounds of God's mercy.

    Cosmo asked Wolf:


    So you believe the bibles origins of life and the universe
    some 6 thousand years ago?
    I cannot speak for Wolf, but I have never heard him even remotely suggest that he is a young earth advocate. My experience is that most educated Christians do not believe YE theory.

    Some do, but it is not a burning topic among Christians because whether we are young earthers or old earthers, we all believe the universe was the result of God's creative efforts.

    Selene claimed:


    Intelligent people are not stupid enough to believe everything they are told to believe.
    Since we do not know what you believe, we are unable to verify whether you fit your own criteria or not.

    I can agree that some people do some stupid things in the name of religion -- even Christianity. But if, for example, someone perpetrates a murder in violation of his religion, it does not seem you could charge the religion with having led by the person. If someone's belief is contrary to the norm of his avowed religion, it does not seem fair to blame the religion.

    Selene continues:

    It's called discrimination and discernment, something people prone to 'believing' in a God seem to have little of.
    Hmmm, it seems Christians are consistently (but erroneously) accused of judging others -- something that would require considerable discrimination and discernment. Actually, I am not sure what you are trying to say in that sentence.

    In fact, the entire post does not make a lot of sense which, I think, may be a product Selene's limited English. Atheists do not think for themselves any more than any of the rest of us do. Atheists sort through various amounts of data and adopt and follow the herd which most closely resembles their thinking.

    You have your own god -- knowledge. You have your own prophets such as Carl Sagan, Jay Gould and Richard Dawkins. Each of them has produced Epistles which you quote and regard as gospel.

    So how are you really that different? Oh, that's right; we get to go to heaven and you don't.
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    Hmm...interesting how people read their own interpretations of statements depending on their bias and prejudice.

    Stay and baa in your little herd then mitchellmckain
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    [quote="(Q)"]
    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf
    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo

    So, motivation is the key, not intelligence?
    Huh? Wtf are you talking about?
    I do not know if that is addressed to me or wolf but I did not make that statement.

    My reply to wolf was almost completely edited.

    So your question is taken completely out of context.

    Cosmo
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Yeah right! People attribute motivations to others BECAUSE they themselves are motivated by such things. Therefore since you see people as motivated by fear, I can only conclude that this is what motivates you. But I would not assume that this is what motivates most atheists, instead I would assume they are motivated as I am by a process of exploration and discovery about themselves and the world. So the question is, what is it that you are so afraid of?
    Nothing frightens me more than people like you mitchellmckain.

    All of your arguments on religion and atheism appear unoriginal, uninspiring and prove nothing. In fact you appear to bend truths and change your mind consistently to suit your own arguments and beliefs and therefore you are perpetually confined into some closed belief trap system manufactured by your constantly shifting beliefs and ideas depending on what colour pants you are wearing.

    Such people never learn a damn thing because there is nothing further to learn, is there?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dayton
    Cosmo asked Wolf:

    Quote:
    So you believe the bibles origins of life and the universe
    some 6 thousand years ago?


    I cannot speak for Wolf, but I have never heard him even remotely suggest that he is a young earth advocate. My experience is that most educated Christians do not believe YE theory.

    Some do, but it is not a burning topic among Christians because whether we are young earthers or old earthers, we all believe the universe was the result of God's creative efforts.
    The OT was written by ancient minds with just the knowledge available at that time.

    But todays science refutes just about everything the OT teaches.

    Examples:

    Women are sinners. This is an insult not only to women but to the apes themselves that eat the fruit from trees. This implies 'racism' as well.

    The Latin Church has restored the integrity of woman by portraying them as holy with the 'mother and child' promotion because of their creative capabilities,

    The assumption by the OT as a male creator is false.
    The self reproducting cells and the stem cells are the smallest form of a reprodutive capability and it (SC) can reproduce into other (human parts) forms as well.

    The so called male YHWH cannot do that.
    French scientists have discovered a couple of amphibious creatures that can reproduce 'bodily' that results into their 'own' image only.
    (Sorry, but I cannot recall the reference since this was a news item)

    The OT separates the 'day and night' that promotes the chauvinist lion representing the day (Sun) faction and the white race.
    The night (Moon) faction represents the females and the Apes as the datkness.

    Well, all I can say is that we are evolved from the chimpanzees, not the lion that is portayed as the Sun god that reproduded man to his own image.

    I could 'go on and on' to post more details and differences between the OT and current science but that would take too much time.

    This is my own evaluation of the OT's subliminal psychology as I see it but what I say here is based on current science.

    Nuff said.

    Cosmo

    Top quote corrected from 'Mitchel' to 'Dayton'. Sorry about this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchel
    Cosmo asked Wolf:

    Quote:
    So you believe the bibles origins of life and the universe
    some 6 thousand years ago?


    I cannot speak for Wolf, but I have never heard him even remotely suggest that he is a young earth advocate. My experience is that most educated Christians do not believe YE theory.

    Some do, but it is not a burning topic among Christians because whether we are young earthers or old earthers, we all believe the universe was the result of God's creative efforts.
    The OT was written by ancient minds with just the knowledge available at that time.

    But todays science refutes just about everything the OT teaches.

    Examples:

    Women are sinners. This is an insult not only to women but to the apes themselves that eat the fruit from trees. This implies 'racism' as well.

    The Latin Church has restored the integrity of woman by portraying them as holy with the 'mother and child' promotion because of their creative capabilities,

    The assumption by the OT as a male creator is false.
    The self reproducting cells and the stem cells are the smallest form of a reprodutive capability and it (SC) can reproduce into other (human parts) forms as well.

    The so called male YHWH cannot do that.
    French scientists have discovered a couple of amphibious creatures that can reproduce 'bodily' that results into their 'own' image only.
    (Sorry, but I cannot recall the reference since this was a news item)

    The OT separates the 'day and night' that promotes the chauvinist lion representing the day (Sun) faction and the white race.
    The night (Moon) faction represents the females and the Apes as the datkness.

    Well, all I can say is that we are evolved from the chimpanzees, not the lion that is portayed as the Sun god that reproduded man to his own image.

    I could 'go on and on' to post more details and differences between the OT and current science but that would take too much time.

    This is my own evaluation of the OT's subliminal psychology as I see it but what I say here is based on current science.

    Nuff said.

    Cosmo
    It's YHVH - Yod, He, Vau, He (final)
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf
    So, motivation is the key, not intelligence?
    Huh? Wtf are you talking about?
    Well, while you were rating daytonturner, you said his lack of motivation was the cause for his lack of success despite his education.

    So from that I gleaned that someone's education is not the direct link to intelligence, but rather someone's motivation. If we assume (as it has been) that intelligent people are successful, then in this case it is motivation that defines intelligence, not education.



    I've scanned over the other posts, but sorry folks, I'll get to those answers when I have more time. Gotta run.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Stay and baa in your little herd then mitchellmckain
    But you are the one using the most renowned and obvious herd argument of all time: "I am better than other people (more intellegent) because I belong to this herd rather than those other herds."



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Nothing frightens me more than people like you mitchellmckain.
    I see... That would be people that challenge your pretences and delusions of superiority. The question is then why is it so necessary for you to build this rational that you are better than other people? I don't require any such thing. My posts in this thread alone are proof of this. I defend no herds only principles like the scientific method. I take down the weak argument wherever I find it, recognizing no heard allegiance whatsoever. But niether do I cower in shadows refusing to put what I believe out there for people to see.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    All of your arguments on religion and atheism appear unoriginal, uninspiring and prove nothing.
    Your mindless stone throwing is irrelevant to me. It is just another fear reaction on your part. You need to overcome the fear and let it go, feeling free to joke about yourself, like this:

    "Yep I am a tin soldier marching to the beat of religious freedom, tolerance, peace and love. 'Why can't we all just get along, he says.' tum ta da tum ta da tum 'marching to different drum' tum ta da tum ta da tum..."



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    In fact you appear to bend truths and change your mind consistently to suit your own arguments and beliefs and therefore you are perpetually confined into some closed belief trap system manufactured by your constantly shifting beliefs and ideas depending on what colour pants you are wearing.
    A complex world view may appear that way to those with a more simple world view. All those things you call shifting is a result of adjusting ones beliefs to match all of the evidence rather than forcing the evidence to fit into a simple world view.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Such people never learn a damn thing because there is nothing further to learn, is there?
    That's right, people who accept the full complexity of reality will refuse to be "taught" by your attempts to stuff reality into the narrow boxes of your ideology. Like Donnie Darko we recognize these oversimplifications and the evil inherent in the attempts to squash people into their one dimensional world.
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    [quote="mitchellmckain"]
    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But you are the one using the most renowned and obvious herd argument of all time: "I am better than other people (more intellegent) because I belong to this herd rather than those other herds."
    Did i say i was including myself in the equation of the 'intelligent' at any time?

    No.

    Are you presumptuous?

    Yes

    I think a large proportion of the human race are stupid irregardless of whether they are theists or atheists. Because they suffer from presumptive speculation and call it knowing.

    I hope you soon recover mckain for the sake of the minority
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    Daytonturner wrote:
    There is a smidgeon of accuracy here if I understand what you are saying. If you are saying that a higher pecentage of atheists have higher educations than the general population, I could agree.
    To be clear on what I mean I would like to explain by example:
    I do not mean eg. that of 100 atheists there are 60 Doctorates, and 40 high school-educated.
    What I mean is eg. that of 100 Doctorates there are 20 atheists, compared to of 100 high-school-educated there are 5 atheists.
    From an atheist's point of view, the statistics indicate that when people are more educated, they are exposed to larger pool of knowledge, information, opinions and they tend to be more skeptic on beliefs that have no supporting evidence. So they turn to be atheists more than general population.
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    prasit claimed:

    To be clear on what I mean I would like to explain by example:
    I do not mean eg. that of 100 atheists there are 60 Doctorates, and 40 high school-educated.
    What I mean is eg. that of 100 Doctorates there are 20 atheists, compared to of 100 high-school-educated there are 5 atheists.
    From an atheist's point of view, the statistics indicate that when people are more educated, they are exposed to larger pool of knowledge, information, opinions and they tend to be more skeptic on beliefs that have no supporting evidence. So they turn to be atheists more than general population.
    Well, if you have some statistical information which would confirm such a claim, I have no problem with it.

    However, it seems mathematically unlikely to me, that 7 percent of the population (avowed agnostics and atheists) could make up 20 percent of the doctoral holders in the U.S. I'm not sure that if every atheist and agnostic had doctorals, that it would make up 20 percent of the U.S, doctorals. Maybe in more atheistic Europe where about 13 percent are avowed agnostics and atheist, that could be true.

    I am unable to find a study which breaks down the percent of atheist doctorals v. believer doctorals. So unless someone has such a study that I have not found, there is no way to refute prasit's claim and there is no way for prasit to confirm it. Prasit can say whatever he wants, saying it is not the same as proving it.

    Prasit also implies that as people get more education they are more likely to become religious apostates. I also looked for studies on that.

    One study points this out:


    While Americans remain among the most religious in the industrialized world, it is widely observed that many of them exhibit cycles of religiosity, the most evident of which occurs in early adulthood. The young adult years of many Americans are marked by a clear decline in outward religious expression, which is widely thought to hit bottom during and perhaps because of the college experience. Data from 30 years of the General Social Survey pinpoints age 22 as the point in the life course when average levels of weekly or more frequent church attendance are at their lowest (17 percent). The climb back into regular or semi-regular religious practiceóif it occurs at all, and it usually doesóis often stimulated by marriage and childbearing (Stolzenberg, Blair-Loy, and Waite 1995). This barely needs retelling, as if a farewell to organized religion during the college years is simply part of the cultural script so many possess. But not all Americans check their religion at the dorm door. While much is made of religious decline, emerging adulthood is also a time in the life course when Americans are most open to religious change and growth. It is a phase commonly associated with religious conversion and thus targeted for considerable proselytizing by evangelical religious organizations. Waxing or waning, adolescence and early adulthood are certainly the most religiously unstable phases of the life course. -- http://religion.ssrc.org/reforum/Regnerus_Uecker.pdf
    So, prasit's observation does have some credibilty -- that college students have a tendency to drift away from their religious upbringing. But once the get out and have to live REAL life again, their spiritual values again become important to them.

    The problem here, I think, is that many of the atheists and agnostics who post on this forum are college students or recent graduates who think they know everything there is to know about almost everything there is to know.

    They will be shocked by the time they are 30 or so and realize just how little they really know. University diplomas do not signal the end of learning, but the beginning of questioning, the beginning of relevancy. What we find is that most of what we learned in College is useless when it comes to being relevant to living a life. As I pointed out before on this thread, knowledge and wisdom are not the same. We gain knowledge in College; we gain wisdom in living.

    I recently saw a news article which indicated that the older the age group, the higher the percentage of those with religious feelings. Unfortunately, it did not indicate whether this was because these people had always been religious or because they were converted later in life.

    My search techniques must be poor, as I am unable to find information on either of these aspects. My own observation is that many Christians are converted after they are 30 and many Christians have had a time in their teen and young adult years in which they strayed from their faith only to return.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    selene said:

    I think a large proportion of the human race are stupid irregardless of whether they are theists or atheists. Because they suffer from presumptive speculation and call it knowing.
    Excuse me. Is not this presumptive speculation in and of itself? Selene is skewered on her own shish-ka-bob.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    selene said:

    I think a large proportion of the human race are stupid irregardless of whether they are theists or atheists. Because they suffer from presumptive speculation and call it knowing.
    Excuse me. Is not this presumptive speculation in and of itself? Selene is skewered on her own shish-ka-bob.
    I would rather be skewered on a shis-ka-bob than squeezed between a pitta bread
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Did i say i was including myself in the equation of the 'intelligent' at any time?
    Bullcrap! Your post was the pure bigotry of a herd mentality. As an atheist you presume that people only believe in God because they are told to believe or because of fear. Typical athiest nonsense. You describe the arrogant self righteous presumption of looking down at the stupidity of others and that is not a bigotry and arrogance that anyone parots unless they have adopted it. The person who uses the language of a racist is a racist and so the bigotry you parot is clearly your own.

    The ignorance of a bigot oozes from your words such as when you talk about fear of existential responsibility motivating a belief in God when Existentialism like so much of the rest of philosophy and sciences are the innovations of theists. It is the utter ignorance of an atheist bigot that assumes that there is no such thing as an intellegent theist, or a Christian existentialist, and it is in this mindless bigotry that you reveal the truth: that you yourself are incapable of thought outside the mentality of your herd.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Did i say i was including myself in the equation of the 'intelligent' at any time?
    Bullcrap! Your post was the pure bigotry of a herd mentality. As an atheist you presume that people only believe in God because they are told to believe or because of fear. Typical athiest nonsense. You describe the arrogant self righteous presumption of looking down at the stupidity of others and that is not a bigotry and arrogance that anyone parots unless they have adopted it. The person who uses the language of a racist is a racist and so the bigotry you parot is clearly your own.

    The ignorance of a bigot oozes from your words such as when you talk about fear of existential responsibility motivating a belief in God when Existentialism like so much of the rest of philosophy and sciences are the innovations of theists. It is the utter ignorance of an atheist bigot that assumes that there is no such thing as an intellegent theist, or a Christian existentialist, and it is in this mindless bigotry that you reveal the truth: that you yourself are incapable of thought outside the mentality of your herd.
    Oh dear me, what a waste of time

    Did i say i was an atheist?

    No

    Are you once again presumptuous?

    Yes

    I think you are stupid mckain and i base that on evidence of your posts.

    People believe in God for many reasons but it is often based on fear and wanting to belong.
    People are atheists for many reasons and that is sometimes based on fear or wanting to belong, but it is often the case people choose not to believe in God through careful deliberation over the evidence, and that is intelligence, whereas blind belief of the 'faithful' is usually from ignorance.

    Your posts ooze vitriol, speculation, presumption, neurosis and some kind of egotistical nonsense from your superiority complex. You further yourself as more and more of a narrow minded ass the more you write.

    It seems to me that it is you who is basted in fear, otherwise you wouldn't get yourself into such a twist about everything and concoct fallacy and speculation in place of facts or reality.

    You should get into the habit of looking further than your nose (and your keyboard) and hopefully you will discover there is a whole world out there to explore apart from the neurosis of your twitching brain cells.
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    Selene

    Thanks about that correction of YHVH spelling.

    I always wondered about whether I had it right.

    Cosmo
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain

    Well since I am one of the religious

    Ahh....... that explains it
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    Selene

    Thanks about that correction of YHVH spelling.

    I always wondered about whether I had it right.

    Cosmo
    It's hebrew

    commonly pronounced Jehovah

    YHVH is Qabbalistic tetragrammation and divides the macrocosm into four worlds and the human soul into descending levels as well as being synonymous metaphorically with the four elements.
    This formula is the basis of many religious and occult ceremonies as well as the divisions in the tarot suits.

    Basically

    Y - Yod = Father
    H - He = Mother
    V- Vau = Son
    H - He final = daughter

    It is predominantly the formula of creation (albeit often incestuously!) and can be found in many religious and occult texts as well as mythology.
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    Selene's explanation of YHWH does not exactly agree with what Hebrew scholars believe.

    The third letter, vav, had two sounds -- the sound of the English "v" as in victory and the sound of the English "w" as in wolf. We do not know which of these sounds was ascribed in this word because the Jews did not even say the word, holding it so sacred that it should not be uttered by human lips.

    Also, the initial letter, yowd, also had two different sounds -- the sound of "y" and in yes or the sound of "j" as in jump.

    We have similar letters in English such as "g" which has two sounds, both of which are in the word garage.

    So what we have is one school of thought which feels the word was pronounced Jehova and another group which feels it was pronounced Yahweh (Yah as in yacht, way is in, well, way). Thus we have some who prefer YHWH to denote Yahweh or YHVH to denote Jehova. There is also another school of thought which advocates Yuh-hova. Either spelling is acceptable.

    The more popular position among scholars is that the word was pronounced Yahweh. This, I think, is mostly because the letter "j" does not begin appearing in alphabets until modern times. Even early English does not have the letter "j."
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Selene's explanation of YHWH does not exactly agree with what Hebrew scholars believe.

    The third letter, vav, had two sounds -- the sound of the English "v" as in victory and the sound of the English "w" as in wolf. We do not know which of these sounds was ascribed in this word because the Jews did not even say the word, holding it so sacred that it should not be uttered by human lips.

    Also, the initial letter, yowd, also had two different sounds -- the sound of "y" and in yes or the sound of "j" as in jump.

    We have similar letters in English such as "g" which has two sounds, both of which are in the word garage.

    So what we have is one school of thought which feels the word was pronounced Jehova and another group which feels it was pronounced Yahweh (Yah as in yacht, way is in, well, way). Thus we have some who prefer YHWH to denote Yahweh or YHVH to denote Jehova. There is also another school of thought which advocates Yuh-hova. Either spelling is acceptable.

    The more popular position among scholars is that the word was pronounced Yahweh. This, I think, is mostly because the letter "j" does not begin appearing in alphabets until modern times. Even early English does not have the letter "j."
    Yes that's correct, but it is most often regarded as V.

    I am not a Hebrew scholar.
    I am coming from a more Western occult tradition.

    But linguistically the letter is Vau, the W is placed only depending on pronunciation.

    There are variations and disagreements of course depending on what angle you are coming from in regards to YHVH.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Oh dear me, what a waste of time

    Did i say i was an atheist?
    Yes you have been careful not to say whether you believe in God or not. But this is irrelevant because as I explained before, a person who uses the words of a racist is a racist no matter how much he/she says that he/she is not. Whether you say that you believe in God or not, you have used the words of bigotry against the religious and therefore until you repudiate what you said you share the antireligious bigotry of the anti-religious fundamentalist reactionary atheists no matter what you may say about you personally believing in God. You are most certainly NOT the type of atheist we have been calling a pure atheist who does not demonstrate this kind of herd mentality.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    I think you are stupid mckain and i base that on evidence of your posts.
    Nonsense. This is a reaction to my attack on your one post alone, for you show no knowledge or even that you care what the content of the rest of my posts may be. I, on the other hand, am well aware that you have leveled your contempt at theist and atheist alike, but your fantasy that this makes you better than either of them is pure trash no matter what special word you have invented for yourself. A new line of rhetoric and self-deceiving rationalisms do not change the look down your nose behavior of your herd mentality. You like to pretend that you have seperated yourself from the herds but it is clear that you are a herd animal - a product of the herd. Do you really think that pretending that you by yourself represents a whole herd makes you an individual??? LOL



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    People believe in God for many reasons but it is often based on fear and wanting to belong.
    Ah a few brain cells are begining to work after all. Yes, this is indeed the way to avoid the stupidy of the herd, by voiding their generalizations. Keep practicing and your pretences will become much more convincing. Although there are also those who say that prentences honestly practiced can change the reality as well.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    People are atheists for many reasons and that is sometimes based on fear or wanting to belong, but it is often the case people choose not to believe in God through careful deliberation over the evidence, and that is intelligence, whereas blind belief of the 'faithful' is usually from ignorance.
    Yes and quite a few intellegent people choose to believe in God after careful deliberation of the "evidence".

    Fewer are capable of examining the process whereby they have done this to realize that reason is not only limited to taking one from premises to conclusions, but that reason alters perception and thus the so called "evidence" is itself altered by belief. Those who realize this understand that beliefs are arrived at primarily by the choices they make and thus seeing the role of personal preference are much less likely to look down their noses at people who choose differently. Some thus actually go beyond the herd mentality of seeing comonality only with those who choose the same beliefs to realize the commonality that is found in being a member of a species who choose what they believe. Full acceptance of existential responsibility requires this.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Your posts ooze vitriol, speculation, presumption, neurosis and some kind of egotistical nonsense from your superiority complex. You further yourself as more and more of a narrow minded ass the more you write.
    Oh yes indeed. I restrain no vitriol when it comes to displaying contempt for any self-righteous condemnation of the beliefs of others, or for any other reason. I certainly presume the superiority of those who advocate tolerance and understanding over those who promote bigotry and prejudice. I feel a "neurotic" compulsion to condemn, belittle and despise the attitudes of those who think they are better than others because of some distinction that they think is so important. Yes I am narrow minded in my utter rejection of the rational for bigotry and prejudice. But I don't think this is hypocritical because I think this is the one case where these things are justified. Tolerance cannot be practiced with no limitations at all, for tolerance only makes sense if it draws the line at intolerance. Tolerance MUST include an intolerance of intolerance, for otherwise it becomes something behind which people can hide passive intolerance.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    It seems to me that it is you who is basted in fear,
    Yes we should have a healthy fear of intolerance and bigotry for it would not be intellegent to do otherwise. It is the lesson of history that these bring out the worst behaviors of mankind to perpetrate the greatest horrors. It is those who do not learn this lesson of history who should not be called intellegent.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    otherwise you wouldn't get yourself into such a twist about everything and concoct fallacy and speculation in place of facts or reality.
    There is no twisting or speculation in the plain words of your post where you make the silly generalizations that those who believe in God do so out of fear and that atheists are intellegent by no other virtue than being atheist. I see you have begun to withdraw from indefensible positions. But it does not reflect well on your intelletual honesty to pretend that you did not make them. I make mistakes as everyone does and the way to make these a good thing is not to rationalize them but to correct them.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    You should get into the habit of looking further than your nose (and your keyboard) and hopefully you will discover there is a whole world out there to explore apart from the neurosis of your twitching brain cells.
    Are you talking to yourself in a mirror?
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    Mckain, your wrath is amusing, your ignorance is alarming.

    A teacher once said to me

    'You cannot debate or come to agreement or disagreement with people you cannot see.'

    I cannot see you mckain, you hide behind rhetoric, you argue with false precepts and speculations. You concoct fallacies in place of realities,
    And worse still you use projection and call it me.

    And even worser still, you don't even realise you are doing it.

    When you come out from behind that noxious smoke-screen we might get somewhere
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    Mitchell,

    I find the irony of your statements outstandingly ironic!

    You are attempting to call atheism a herd following affair. But according to figures which theists love to quote, such as how much of a minority atheism really is, how can you possibly say this?

    Which sounds more like following the herd in the following;

    The person who studies science and learns deductive and objective reasoning and decides for themselves that god couldn't exist, religion isn't all that necessary, faith is irrelevent...etc ad infinitum...

    OR

    The person who is born into a religious family and is brought to chird since infancy every Sunday without ANY understanding of what it is. In such a tender age of neural development, for something like religion to be ''forced'' onto the child and they are brought to church, told say their prayers before bed and urged (told?) read the bible (Quran....etc).

    To me, the answer is strikingly clear.

    Barry
    Thinking of the question is greater than knowing the answer...
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    iNot to jump in and defend Mitchell who is well able to defend himself, but Barry's logic is a little off when it comes to the herding effect. (The rest of his post is good.)

    Skinheads are a much smaller segment of society that even atheist and yet this is a very good example of following a herd. A herd of two cows is still a herd. (Git along little dogies.)

    While selene used the "herd" terminology as a pajoritive, what she is writing about is more commonly known as group-think.

    Anytime you are in a group, there is going to be group-think within that group. For atheists to claim they are independent thinkers is foolishness which fools only the atheists. They have many common concepts of thinking.

    Truth be know, there are really only two herds -- us and them.

    Atheist, especially the ones on this forum, pretty much say the same things over and over and over and over and over and over again. Many of the objections atheists present about God seem to boil down to the idea that he has not done things they way they think he should have and, therefore, he cannot exist. My feeling is that if they really know how to run the world, they would be in charge.

    Another common thought expressed by atheists is that they do not believe in God because he cannot be proved by the scientific method. In fact, they will claim, the only things they believe are those things shown to be true via the scientific method.

    yet, to the best of my knowledge, there has been no experiment conducted which scientifically proves that the scientific method is the only source of information -- or even the best source for that matter. So people who believe only what has been shown to be valid by scientific method are believing in that which has not been shown to be true.

    Add to that the two things Barry covered, and you probably have 80 percent of the arguments put forth by atheists. Group-think reigns among atheists just as it does among any other like minded group.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Mckain, your wrath is amusing, your ignorance is alarming.
    Condemnation is not wrath and it is not even a person I am condemning but only a certain type of rhetoric.

    You need to learn to attack the words and not the person, precisely because it is the words that you can see. By attacking the person you over-reach yourself and make yourself look foolish.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    A teacher once said to me

    'You cannot debate or come to agreement or disagreement with people you cannot see.'

    I cannot see you mckain, you hide behind rhetoric,

    When you come out from behind that noxious smoke-screen we might get somewhere
    Your teacher is abolutely correct. I despise those who use armored car rhetoric in these discussions, attacking any weakness they see while refusing to reveal anything of themselves. I do nothing like that, but have revealed far more of myself than you have (having been here quite a while in this forum). I use rhetoric, but I do not hide behind it.

    Whatever you would like to know, you simply have to ask. But I shall begin anyway. Both my parents graduated in psychology and became teachers, but my father was blacklisted as a communist leader (he was a Maoist) in the latter part of that era when they did that sort of thing, and had the FBI watching him for a while after he put out an add in the newspaper saying "freedom fighters unite!" So I remember participating in the peace marches, and visiting Black Panther headquarters when I was a child.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    you argue with false precepts and speculations.

    You concoct fallacies in place of realities,
    Saying such things is empty and meaningless stone throwing. If you have a case, then prove it.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    And worse still you use projection and call it me.
    No you simply confuse an attack on your words with an attack upon you. I don't even begin to imagine that I know you. I only know your words and it is up to you to use your words to reveal who you are if you want to be known.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    And even worser still, you don't even realise you are doing it.
    Human beings are always doing things that they are not aware of and it is one of the benefits of interactions between people that through such interactions they can become more aware of such things. Now I think I have the greater experience and the greater understanding of what is going on here better than you, but if you can bring such a revelation of self to me as you are suggesting, you will have my gratitude.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Flannery
    You are attempting to call atheism a herd following affair. But according to figures which theists love to quote, such as how much of a minority atheism really is, how can you possibly say this?
    Actualy I am attempting no such thing. It is not atheism I was commenting on but only Selene's post. Atheism like most abstractions are represented in reality by a great diversity of particulars. Both atheism and other religious/philosophical stands can be used in an ideological or herd mentality.

    In fact I would actually say that it is unavoidable, because we ARE social creatures. So what we really strive for in our condemnation these ideologies and herd mentalities is really the better herd ethic and the superior ideology by striving against things like oversimplification that makes inferior ideologies and self-righteousness that contributes to corrupting the herd ethic. In any case, whatever you want to call it, we strive towards the way of thinking that can reach toward the best things that human beings are capable of.



    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Flannery
    Which sounds more like following the herd in the following;

    The person who studies science and learns deductive and objective reasoning and decides for themselves that god couldn't exist, religion isn't all that necessary, faith is irrelevent...etc ad infinitum...

    OR

    The person who is born into a religious family and is brought to church since infancy every Sunday without ANY understanding of what it is. In such a tender age of neural development, for something like religion to be ''forced'' onto the child and they are brought to church, told say their prayers before bed and urged (told?) read the bible (Quran....etc).

    To me, the answer is strikingly clear.
    Yes I quite agree.

    In fact I cannot help feeling sorry for any child born into a family where the parents agree on these matters. The freedom that a child has to make such choices for themselves can almost be measured by how much the parents disagree. However, this can be counter-acted by parents with a strong commitment to the idea that convictions about these things are only of value if they are a matter of personal choice and discovery. By providing the proper encouragement of children to think about these matters for themselves, it is possible that even a child in a religiously/philosophically united family might have a meaningful spiritual life.
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    I don't need religious doctrines to tell me how to live, how to be a good person and how and what to think.

    I have come to my own philosophy about life, constructed my own beliefs and morals based on experiment, experience, reason and just plain common sense.

    I don't require confirmation from any doctrine, text, philosopher, leader, group, organisation or herd.

    A person finding it neccessary to subscribe to any organised religion in order to be told how to live, how to be good, and how and what to think, is either too lazy to think and decide for themselves, or they just don't have the resources and capabilities, such as a brain defect, to do it, and therefore must rely on another to do it for them.

    Religions indoctrinate children under the belief that a child cannot think for themselves under a certain age. That is evil, for it takes away any form of automation and independence, and you may as well lock their brains up in a little box and throw away the key.

    History has demonstrated the herd mentality of religion and the murderous evil that goes with it.
    I have worked within Christian organisations for many years as a youth worker, and i have fought indoctrination for their sake and seen the sinister mentality with which these so called religious people operate.

    They have this smug satisfaction that they are saved and everyone else is going to Hell, because they believe in this invisible thing called God, yet the smug satisfaction only comes from the security blanket of knowing they belong in a herd who all think the same thing.
    They are deluded to such an extent that i don't believe they are sane. They are not sane because once they belong to this belief system they then stop thinking any further than what the religious texts tell them to think. All other thoughts and ideas that don't revolve around God are evil. They are not allowed to explore other ideas, beliefs and philosophies because it might lead them astray and off the path of righteousness and being saved.

    Yes mckain i would say i have a degree of intelligence for seeing through this farce called religion, and for having the fearlessness and capabilities to formulate and adopt my own philosophies and theories based on my own judgements and not a 'Gods', albeit i have been helped and encouraged on the way by various peoples ideas and thoughts, but only those that made rational sense to me. So no of course nobody does it alone, but i am certainly not beholden to anyone or anything for it and nor are they to me.

    I would trust another independant thinking person with my life, but i wouldn't trust anyone subscribed to a religious group.
    An independant person is far more likely to show genuine compassion and rational sense because they have had far more experience in gaining those qualities.
    On the other hand a religious person subscribed to a group needs Gods word to tell them how to act and if God says kill the blasphemers and unbelievers (spoken through a religious leaders mouth of course!) the mindless herd would give no thought to picking up a weapon and becoming murderous.

    This has been a common element within certain religions throughout history and this herd mentality still prevails today.

    Out of all the possible religions only Buddhism seems to have got the formula right, and then i would classify Hinduism as being not far behind.

    As for Christians and all its branches, i wouldn't trust them with anything. They are a hypocritical herd, capable of giving alms one day and then ripping you to shreds the next, and then have no conscience about it because God said it was so.

    Now if that isn't a mindless thoughtless herd i don't know what is
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    Selene said:
    I have come to my own philosophy about life, constructed my own beliefs and morals based on experiment, experience, reason and just plain common sense.
    Sorry, but Selene, but you are only fooling yourself.

    You did not grow up in a vacuum or in a world which was devoid of philosophy, beliefs and moral values. Only in such a vacuum could you truly develop your own.

    What you have done is looked around at the philosophies of others, the beliefs of others and the morals of others and chosen the herd(s) you wish to be a part of and the herd(s) you wish to reject.

    This is not unique, nor is it different from any other person. And there is no reason for you to somehow think you are special or that others who have done the exact same thing are inferior or more nearly innaccurate in their choices.

    Perhaps you could produce the paper work on the experiments you conducted to confirm your choices as being the superior ones?
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Selene said:
    I have come to my own philosophy about life, constructed my own beliefs and morals based on experiment, experience, reason and just plain common sense.
    Sorry, but Selene, but you are only fooling yourself.

    You did not grow up in a vacuum or in a world which was devoid of philosophy, beliefs and moral values. Only in such a vacuum could you truly develop your own.

    What you have done is looked around at the philosophies of others, the beliefs of others and the morals of others and chosen the herd(s) you wish to be a part of and the herd(s) you wish to reject.

    This is not unique, nor is it different from any other person. And there is no reason for you to somehow think you are special or that others who have done the exact same thing are inferior or more nearly innaccurate in their choices.

    Perhaps you could produce the paper work on the experiments you conducted to confirm your choices as being the superior ones?
    Are you seriously dumb or are you just pulling my pigtails??

    I quote from my post:

    'albeit i have been helped and encouraged on the way by various peoples ideas and thoughts, but only those that made rational sense'

    The 'experiments' are called life, sometimes getting it wrong, sometimes getting it right....trial and error....what works and what doesn't...you know good old fashioned QED?

    Do you belong to a religious herd by any chance?
    Is that why you have difficulty with thinking and logic?

    Bless you.....oh well things must only get better, fingers crossed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    I don't need religious doctrines to tell me how to live, how to be a good person and how and what to think.

    I have come to my own philosophy about life, constructed my own beliefs and morals based on experiment, experience, reason and just plain common sense.

    I don't require confirmation from any doctrine, text, philosopher, leader, group, organisation or herd.

    Yes mckain i would say i have a degree of intelligence for seeing ... So no of course nobody does it alone, but i am certainly not beholden to anyone or anything for it and nor are they to me.
    Good for you!



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    A person finding it neccessary to subscribe to any organised religion in order to be told how to live, how to be good, and how and what to think, is either too lazy to think and decide for themselves, or they just don't have the resources and capabilities, such as a brain defect, to do it, and therefore must rely on another to do it for them.

    Religions indoctrinate children under the belief that a child cannot think for themselves under a certain age. That is evil, for it takes away any form of automation and independence, and you may as well lock their brains up in a little box and throw away the key.
    Very true!



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    History has demonstrated the herd mentality of religion and the murderous evil that goes with it.
    Indeed and the atheistic "religion" of communism was the worst of the lot, both in murder of the opposition and in the forced indoctrination of children.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    I have worked within Christian organisations for many years as a youth worker, and i have fought indoctrination for their sake and seen the sinister mentality with which these so called religious people operate.
    You should name these Christian organizations you worked with so that people know to be wary of them, for otherwise people look at good examples they know which are nothing like what you describe and simply dismiss your claims as the raving of a crackpot. Maybe, it is true, that many will just simply disagree with you and me, but that is their choice. In any case, painting with an indiscriminant brush just makes you more like them than different.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    They have this smug satisfaction that they are saved and everyone else is going to Hell, because they believe in this invisible thing called God, yet the smug satisfaction only comes from the security blanket of knowing they belong in a herd who all think the same thing.
    Almost as bad as the smug satisfaction of people that think they are more intellegent than you are, don't you think?



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    They are deluded to such an extent that i don't believe they are sane. They are not sane because once they belong to this belief system they then stop thinking any further than what the religious texts tell them to think. All other thoughts and ideas that don't revolve around God are evil. They are not allowed to explore other ideas, beliefs and philosophies because it might lead them astray and off the path of righteousness and being saved.
    Some people think that insanity in all its varieties and degrees is, in fact, a universal human condition, and thus for practicalities sake, "sanity" must be a legal fiction. The psychiatrist use the term, "the designated patient", for he/she often finds that the people who send or bring this person to his office are far less sane than the one he is suppose to treat. It is often an important part of the training of a psychiatrist that they undergo therapy themselves.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Out of all the possible religions only Buddhism seems to have got the formula right, and then i would classify Hinduism as being not far behind.
    Buddhism is the first religion that I ever studied and there is indeed a great deal to admire there. I also have some respect for the "old religions" (before 500BC) -- the shamanistic ("pagan") religions for their respect of the natural world. Of these Hinduism is the oldest and most developed, a lot like a bridge to the newer religions, but Hinduism is a bit to mired in Indian culture and I never could swallow their doctrine of reincarnation.



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    As for Christians and all its branches, i wouldn't trust them with anything. They are a hypocritical herd, capable of giving alms one day and then ripping you to shreds the next, and then have no conscience about it because God said it was so.

    Now if that isn't a mindless thoughtless herd i don't know what is
    Sound like you have some good reasons for such opinions. However, I honestly think this is a problem that is found wherever there is a dominant religion. I suspect you will find problems that are fundamentally similar to this both in places where Hinduism is the dominant religion and in places where Buddhism is the dominant religion, because what you are talking about has much much more to do with universals of human nature.
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    Mitch wrote:
    Indeed and the atheistic "religion" of communism was the worst of the lot, both in murder of the opposition and in the forced indoctrination of children.
    Since when is communism supposed to be the religion of atheist? Communism is political ideal. Atheism is a personal belief. Atheists can be Buddhists, Zen, Communists, Democrats, philanthropists, Tree huggers etc.
    If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs, it would be Buddhism
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    As near as I can tell, one main difference between atheists and religous people is that atheists don't have to go to all them church meetings.

    Atheists have their gods -- science and knowledge. They have their path to enlightenment -- scientific method. They have their prophets -- Carl Sagan, Jay Gould, Richard Dawkins to name a few. They have desciples -- such as many of the posters on this forum.

    I would enumerate different atheistic sects and creeds except some atheist already did it for me at http://mwillett.org/atheism/sects1.htm

    Just because atheists claim not to be a religion does not make it so. They certainly have a lot of the qualities.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    I have worked within Christian organisations for many years as a youth worker, and i have fought indoctrination for their sake and seen the sinister mentality with which these so called religious people operate.
    By the way Selene, ...

    ...is it possible that the particular issue on which this indoctrination occured have anything to do with the evolution vs. creationism controversy, or another one like the abortion issue? If so I can completely sympathize, for there are certainly large sectors of Christianity in the United States that are really hard-headed on these topics. If such Christians are going to say that a Christian cannot be a scientist or have any compassion for a pregnant woman then it is only natural that intellegent people will react by denouncing Christianity. However I will not let such people tell me what Christianity must be, any more than I will let an atheist tell me what science or rationality must be. The attitude of these right-wing Christians that they own God and speak for Him is nothing less than blasphemous.
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    Probably because people with high intellect base their theories on logical evidence since there is no proof that God actually exist...

    But then again there is no proof to show that God "doesn't" exist. :?
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    By the way Buddhism is not a religion, it's a philosophy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sum1bor3d
    By the way Buddhism is not a religion, it's a philosophy.
    I beg to differ...

    Buddhism like all of the great religions includes a rather large spectrum of belief and practice. As some follow it, it is indeed more like a philosophy than a religion, but as others believe and practice it, it is most definitely a religion.

    The same can be said of most religions, certainly of Christianity (whose gamut runs all the way from Biblical literalists to those who say that "God does not exist, but is the ground of our being"), Judaism, Hinduism and the other "pagan" (older, nature based, shamanistic) religions. (I am less sure if this can be said of Islam or Jainism. I just don't know enough about them. But I suspect that it can.)
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
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  86. #85  
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    Mitch wrote:
    I beg to differ...

    Buddhism like all of the great religions includes a rather large spectrum of belief and practice. As some follow it, it is indeed more like a philosophy than a religion, but as others believe and practice it, it is most definitely a religion.
    If religion is based on the belief that God(s) is the supreme being, then Buddhism is not a religion.
    If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs, it would be Buddhism
    -Albert Einstein
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    Daytonturner wrote:
    just because atheists claim not to be a religion does not make it so. They certainly have a lot of the qualities.
    Religion:
    noun: a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny
    noun: institution to express belief in a divine power
    Clearly atheists do not adhere to religion. The similarities you quote are very superficial.
    If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs, it would be Buddhism
    -Albert Einstein
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasit
    If religion is based on the belief that God(s) is the supreme being, then Buddhism is not a religion.
    Quote Originally Posted by prasit
    Religion:
    noun: a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny
    noun: institution to express belief in a divine power
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obviously
    Quote Originally Posted by prasit
    If religion is based on the belief that God(s) is the supreme being, then Buddhism is not a religion.
    Quote Originally Posted by prasit
    Religion:
    noun: a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny
    noun: institution to express belief in a divine power
    http://www.amtb.org.tw/e-bud/releases/educati.htm

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    Believe or don't believe. Your choice . Red pill or blue pill.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    Quote Originally Posted by 425 Chaotic Requisition
    Believe or don't believe. Your choice . Red pill or blue pill.
    Neither!

    Why do we have to take any exterior pill to reach any form of awareness???

    After all 'reality' is subjective. The understanding we have of and the meanings we give to anything outside ourselves, including our beliefs, ultimately depend on an inner subjectivity.

    Without my brain to process the data i receive through my senses from anything 'external' from my body (even if there is such a thing :-D ) nothing would make any sense or have any meaning.

    In that sense i do exist in a vacuum! Humans depend on each other in that sense to confirm to one another what we are feeling and experiencing are the same, although it is never identical. And in that sense we all belong to a herd, whether we like it or not!

    I'll stick both pills up my bum and see what happens, perhaps my head will explode!?? (that was for mckain)

    Forums are as bad as text messaging, because you can't see the faces or expressions, if you could, you would see that quite often i would have a mischievous grin.. :P .these emoticons are just not good enough!

    Well i will come back again with a response to the previous threads in a while when i have more time.....but for now i have to write a 2000 word essay on Islam.....how's that for irony!

    P.s I am not an atheist, but nor do i subscribe to any religion or a belief in any particular God. But I do subscribe to a higher way of thinking and acting, for example:

    If i found a wallet in the road stuffed with money and somebodies wage slip giving their name and address, i have a choice-

    1. Find the owner and give it to them
    2. Rub my hands with glee, stuff the money in my pocket and plan a night on the razzle.

    To me the higher decision is obvious, yet the deeper question here is why?

    Somebody may justify keeping the money because they may feel the loser needs to learn a lesson and be more careful. Therefore they feel they are taking the higher route to helping somebody learn a lesson.

    The decision to return it back to the owner is based on compassion and empathy, but could also be a more selfish option of 'well i would want somebody to return the money if it happened to me' as well as being based on the belief of 'treat others as you would want to be treated yourself.'

    Yet neither of these decisions require the intervention of a belief in God or atheist belief to make the choice.

    Laters taters............
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    Still no data? I'm disappointed..
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pendragon
    Still no data? I'm disappointed..
    Go and get you're own data then, lazy bum!
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    Emphasize whichever nuance of the word religion you would like to suit your own purpose, that is the atheistic way.

    If we say someone religiously stops each day for a double latte at Starbucks on the way to work, it has nothing to do with the supernatural.

    Atheism has all the qualities of religion except that it substitutes the natural for the supernatural.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Emphasize whichever nuance of the word religion you would like to suit your own purpose, that is the atheistic way.

    If we say someone religiously stops each day for a double latte at Starbucks on the way to work, it has nothing to do with the supernatural.

    Atheism has all the qualities of religion except that it substitutes the natural for the supernatural.
    Non-sense dayton,

    You remind me of a dog that chases it's own tail and then decides to chase it the other way under the mistaken belief they might catch it
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    Selene: Are you sure you are not really (q) in disquise. Your personal attacks on people you disagree with rather than actually offering some cogent argument are very reminiscent of his style of attack. If you have nothing to say, you should say it.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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  97. #96  
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Atheism has all the qualities of religion except that it substitutes the natural for the supernatural.
    By this text I have concluded that you are deluded, and no matter what we say, your ignorance will not allow you to acknowledge the fact that atheism is indeed not a religion. Your personal convictions are meaningless when it comes to facts.

    Notice that I do not even bother to try and convince you atheism is not a religion, there's just no point. You make me loose faith in humanity.

    Thank you...
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    "Methinks the lady doth protest too much."
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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  99. #98  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Quote Originally Posted by Pendragon
    Still no data? I'm disappointed..
    Go and get you're own data then, lazy bum!
    Hey I didn't start this thread :P It's like saying "Here's my argument. You want proof? You go find some proof for my argument, I'm not going to do it myself" :wink:

    For the record: it does strike me that atheists seem over-represented among intellectuals, not simply because it's 'cool' and 'rebellious' for them to be atheists but because they really can't accept religion as a source of answers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Obviously
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Atheism has all the qualities of religion except that it substitutes the natural for the supernatural.
    blabla [..you don't] acknowledge the fact that atheism is indeed not a religion.
    I guess that's the main reason most religious people just don't understand what atheism is all about. We don't just reject the content of believe systems, we reject the act of 'believing' itself. We reject faith as a standard to base ones actions and choices on.

    When someone offers me an unproven suggestion or speculation I may not immediately reject it if there's reason to believe that it makes sense (the person used the right methodology, has a track record of telling sensible things, the speculation doesn't require bizarre assumptions). But I wont accept it as a 'truth' to guide my actions, I would accept it as nothing more than an interesting unproven speculation. That has nothing to do with 'believing', and even less with religion.
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    OK, so much for my flippant reply.

    The thing here is that I have shown several ways in which atheism emulates the practices of religious organizations. I did not even include that in some places, atheists do actually have regularly scheduled meetings and get togethers.

    The only rebuttal so far has been that since atheists do not believe in the supernatural, they cannot be considered a religion. This is sort of like saying because the ostrich can't fly, it cannot be considered a bird.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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  101. #100  
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    What's more, atheists do not mind at all seeking refuge under the U.S. Constitution as a religion:

    http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/ar...TICLE_ID=45874
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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