Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

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Jeff D
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Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Jeff D » Fri Nov 26, 2010 11:51 pm

. . . the approval of atheists.

Here is an interesting essay by Greta Christina. The title aptly summarizes the content: "Why Religious Believers Are So Desperate for the Atheist Seal of Approval."

There is some slight hyperbole, some over-generalization, in the essay, but I have seen this phenomenon played out here, on this Forum in its current and previous versions, and elsewhere on-line.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by fromthehills » Sat Nov 27, 2010 12:46 am

" What do you care what other people think?"- Arlene Feynman

I think it is interesting, but I believe that it is a limited number of creationists that either seek approval, or are trying to prove their point, or trying to convert our pitiful souls, that we come in contact with. With most of the country (USA) being believers, I would suspect that most just figure we're going to hell, and don't really care what we approve of. One aspect, that I don't find our resident believer to have, is the idea of duty to witness. The idea that they feel the necessity to convert us heathens in order to build riches in heaven.

I would suspect that our Richard believes that we are destined for Hell, but does not tend to point that finger. He doesn't seem to seek our approval either. I might be wrong, but whichever, he is only one of very many.

I'm not sure we should care whether or not Christians seek our approval. On one hand I found the idea appealing, because I think that they don't believe, truly believe, their own nonsense. On the other hand I think that I'm not here to convert the Believers, I would just like to prevent people from accepting that belief as truth without examining the data. I don't turn JW away with snide remarks. I turn them away after questioning their deeply held, although faulty, beliefs. They won't have an epiphany on the spot, I know, but they will have another point of view to think about.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Gord » Sat Nov 27, 2010 1:26 am

I know I seek approval all the time, personally. And personally, I approve! And I'm not just saying that 'cause I like hearing it.
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"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Martin Brock » Sat Nov 27, 2010 3:42 am

Most religious believers, thoughtful or otherwise, don't care what I think of their faith, and I don't care that they don't care, so we agree not to care, and that's fine with me.
People associating freely respect norms of their choice, and relationships governed this way are necessarily interdependent.

More central authorities conquer by dividing, imposing norms channeling the value of synergy toward themselves.

"Every man for himself" is the prescription of a state, not a free community. A state protects the poor from the rich only in fairy tales.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by rrichar911 » Sat Nov 27, 2010 7:03 am

fromthehills

I found math interesting, because there could be no argument about getting the right answer. Physics is somewhat that way, until one gets to the edge of our knowledge and then there is debate and opinions.

I am not impressed for the most part by opinions that must in the end still be subjective. Most of men's ideas about the uncommon are wrong.

Atheist have rejected God, and thus look for a substitute, which many find in intellectual pursuits and thus are good for the most part at providing counter arguments to theory.

Thus I am here because I learn from the experience.

There is not much in life more fulfilling than to discover all be it in most cases an inch at a time the truth of things. Some people don't seem to share that passion. They have ideas and stick to them like glue. What will happen to them is up to God.

Point to ponder: If the Jewish people had been exterminated, as so many have tried to do, and still are trying to do, then it would be quite hard to believe in the God of the Jews. But there still here and virtually all that is going on today is centered around Israel. = evidence.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Sat Nov 27, 2010 9:18 am

rrichar911:
Some people don't seem to share that passion. They have ideas and stick to them like glue. What will happen to them is up to God.


But that there is a god at all is an idea that you stick to like glue.

You cannot seem to divest yourself of the idea that the existence of a god, any god, is essentially an opinion.
And not a fact.

When you say, as you often do in one way or another that "what will happen to them is up to god,," there is an implied threat, the threat of damnation or the promise of some other kind of retribution for non-belief, at the hands of a being that only exists within the framework of your own religious beliefs.
No atheist believes any of it, and skeptics by definition have grave doubts about any or all of religious myths.
There is really no gospel in the Gospels.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by vanderpoel » Sat Nov 27, 2010 3:24 pm

rrichar911 wrote:Atheist have rejected God, and thus look for a substitute, ..

C'mon now rrichar, why would the cured be looking for a substitute sickness?
Besides, not all atheists are recovering Catholics and the absence of a god is not a void.
Religion is not a missing limb if you never used it as a leg to stand on.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Chachacha » Sat Nov 27, 2010 4:56 pm

Off topic of Godists/religious people who want approval from atheists:

The author attributes personality traits and patterns of behavior to something which is unrelated: but there are people from all walks of life who seek approval from those who are the least likely to give it. IMO, when those people aren't trying to gain approval for their beliefs about God, or spirituality, or their chosen religion, they're trying to gain approval for other things.

The idea that saying "I don't believe in God/religion" or "I believe in God" implies that the other person is wrong is similar, in that it is a thought process which, although encouraged by many groups, and embraced by many members, the "us against them" and "you're either one of us or you ain't" group mentality, has very little to do with believing or not believing in God, and everything to do with needing to feel that one is a member of "the right" group and anyone not in said group is wrong, which is seen in individuals with regard to everything from sexual orientation, to nationalism, to being a cheerleader or playing sports, to what kind of car one drives (or not driving at all), or whether one eats or does not eat meat to be of the utmost importance; but for other individuals is a non-issue in most circumstances.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Sat Nov 27, 2010 7:50 pm

vanderpoel wrote:
rrichar911 wrote:Atheist have rejected God, and thus look for a substitute, ..

C'mon now rrichar, why would the cured be looking for a substitute sickness?
Besides, not all atheists are recovering Catholics and the absence of a god is not a void.
Religion is not a missing limb if you never used it as a leg to stand on.


Wish I had thought to say that! Awesome!!
Not that rrichar911 cares that all his imagined notions about atheism or atheists have no connection with reality.
(In addition to his inability to separate skeptics (anyone who professes doubts) from those who have either let go, or never had a god in the first place.)
But he is not alone: it seems to be a conceit among believers who cling to it with the fervor of someone clinging to a piece of wood in the middle of an ocean, that atheism is simply another religion, only for people who seem to survive without religion.
rrichar911 apparently can't conceive of a world without god, and doesn't see why anyone else SHOULD conceive of a world without god.
One does have serious questions about what a country dominated by "libertarians" like ririchar911 would look like.
A graveyard, probably.
And segregated by race, undoubtedly.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by fromthehills » Sat Nov 27, 2010 9:42 pm

rrichar911 wrote:
Point to ponder: If the Jewish people had been exterminated, as so many have tried to do, and still are trying to do, then it would be quite hard to believe in the God of the Jews. But there still here and virtually all that is going on today is centered around Israel. = evidence.


I honestly wouldn't consider it evidence, if I thought it was all centered around Israel. Once, it could be argued that everything centered around Rome. In Europe, that is. In Asia, everything was centered around Mongolia, for a time. A much longer time than can be argued for Israel today. So long, in fact, that you and I could probably declare relation through Genghis Khan. We may ( as a world society ) be suspicious, or envious, of Jews for not having plentiful resources, yet still amassing wealth. They really never held land, that I'm aware of, and Israel seems to be a tenuous grasp, at best.

I don't buy the significance of Israel in today's issues as evidence for the Jewish god. I also believe that most of today's woes are centered around trade, oil, and production, which all may be considered the same thing. Israel is but a small part of those issues, and not the center. If God were a non-issue, if we were a secular world, I think we would still be vying for resources the way we are, there just wouldn't be any religious justification for atrocities committed. Therefor, we may actually have to treat people as people, not as heathens or godless masses, or worse, non-believers-in-the-thing-I-believe. If Jews, culturally, were correctly viewed in the same scientific subset as Arabs, Europeans, Asians, et cetera, and not viewed by some to be religiously incorrect, we would not have these issues based in religious dogma. We may have issues based upon resources, but then there could be an honest evaluation of what those issues were. Not the religious justification that we have now.

Vying for resources is quite normal in our evolution. The warring for religious reasons is perverted justification for atrocity, and is still just fighting for resources, but with team colors.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by rrichar911 » Sat Nov 27, 2010 10:02 pm

nmblum wrote:rrichar911:
Some people don't seem to share that passion. They have ideas and stick to them like glue. What will happen to them is up to God.


But that there is a god at all is an idea that you stick to like glue.

You cannot seem to divest yourself of the idea that the existence of a god, any god, is essentially an opinion.
And not a fact.

When you say, as you often do in one way or another that "what will happen to them is up to god,," there is an implied threat, the threat of damnation or the promise of some other kind of retribution for non-belief, at the hands of a being that only exists within the framework of your own religious beliefs.
No atheist believes any of it, and skeptics by definition have grave doubts about any or all of religious myths.
There is really no gospel in the Gospels.

Norma Manna Blum



Sticking to an idea like glue, means there is no other reason to stick to it than the glue. There are better reasons to form opinons. Evidence in support of them, facts, and logic. Objectivity requires the latter. The former only requires emotions.

There are doubters in the gospel. i.e. Doubting Thomas who would not believe until he touched and saw the evidence for himself.

The implied threat is in your perception. It may well be the case that God is more merciful than your giving Him credit for.

I look at it like this. God is truth, truth is His creation. We in our limited way may take steps toward knowing truth, but since the road is infinite, we never will reach the end of it one step at a time. Thus we never by our self will reach perfection.

So what do we do? We take a quantum leap by believing in the ultimate truth, the end of the line. This we can only do by faith, as we have not filled in all the logical step required to get us from where we are to the limit.

We do the same in science when we assume that there is a unified field theory of everything, an ultimate mechanical answer. That is a matter of faith.

Some scientist don't buy into that assumption, John Wheeler, Isaac Newton, etc.

Point being, faith in the yet to be discovered is not unique to religion. It does exist simply because we don't have all the answers.

Many things that Christians had to take on faith a few years ago, they no longer do. That the universe had a beginning, was contradicted by science. That the universe evolved, was contradicted by science. That time is relative, contradicted by science, etc.

Their faith, turned out to be right.

Have you never had a hunch that you accepted on faith due to the lack of logical steps getting you from here to there, that turned out to be right?

Humans make the majority of their decisions based on logic by association, which means no logic at all.

Example: You watch a saber tooth tiger eat your friend, and assume that the next time you run into a saber tooth tiger, it would be prudent to run away or protect your self. Your assuming that all saber tooth tigers are the same. = logic by association.

You throw a ball into the air, and watch it fall back to earth. You assume that the next time you do this, the result will be the same. Logic by association. Nothing wrong with that, right? Problem is, if you throw it fast enough, it won't come back down, fast enough being escape velocity. Logic by association is not always true. i.e. it is a matter of faith, but we do it virtually all the time.

It is good enough that it has allowed man kind to survive, for with out it, we would not have. With out faith, man would not exist. Why then has it become our mortal enemy? Why such extreme positions?

Thanks for making me think.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by vanderpoel » Sat Nov 27, 2010 10:32 pm

My parents protected me from the machinations of religious indoctrination during the impressionable years of my youth. Instead they convinced me that I was found behind the Canadian army after the liberation of Holland. It wasn't till I found out at the age of six that I would have been born curiously at the age of three that I realized that my parents lied with the best of them, and that they would have to feed me and let me live with them till I had my own driver's license. Not growing up with the fear of some lord and to young for a philosophy of life I never lost what I never had.

Rrichar has long nourished the belief that dumping his soul and the responsibility for his life at the feet of a sculpture will magically extend his life, but I don't think he is naive, but rather dosed in the indoctrinations of his belief. Yet, I understand why rrichar and other believers have such thirst for a meaning beyond the mundane. Once they find the folly in the tenets of their savior they thirst for another savior to save them from their savior. That goes right back to the comfort and easy living of early childhood at a time when their mamas fed them nipples and lies and told them they were destined.

Why live miserably without the entitlement of eternal life, the ultimate payoff of the extortion schemes we call religious? Yet the harder believers pray for answers the more they become just like their parents, inept at living without the blessing of a deity.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by numan » Sat Nov 27, 2010 10:43 pm

'
I certainly wouldn't mind seeing the churches closed---except as museums of art and music and superstition, of course!

I feel that religion is much improved in value when its practitioners are persecuted, despised and forced to meet secretly.
Neither man nor woman can be worth anything until they have discovered that they are fools. This is the first step toward becoming either estimable or agreeable---and until it is taken, there is no hope.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Sat Nov 27, 2010 10:50 pm

The quote from Dan Quayle just knocks me out!! Especially since I spent the morning reading the so -called memoir of our previous (and linguistically unlamented) President.....
Oy, did those guys manage to pull the wool of incompetence over our collective eyes
Maybe it has a connection to religion that is not that far-fetched as one would imagine: people WANT to be fooled.
Are desperate to be fooled, by anything or anybody that will corroborate the limits of their comfort zones.
And especially to be fooled by someone who LOOKS and sounds the way they do...
WHile prattling about Jesus while the country falls apart may sound like the last word in incompetence to many of us, to the confirmed believer, the fact that he recognized the name and importance Jesus in the flurry of competitive words, trumps references to what he DOESN'T understand, or finds most frightening..... like economics, climatology, and most especially overlong discourses about the probable non-existence of god.
The argument for the proof of god's existence based on the survival of Jews, especially after the Holocaust is so ludicrous that it alone should make believers seriously ponder their fantasies.
What is the line? "Were it not for the honor, Lord, I'd just as soon pass up the test and go home."
Hearing that argument, in Israel from an elderly Hassid who had lost his wife and five children, would have been enough, with no further evidence, for me to conclude that there is NO brainwashing like religious brainwashing.
And that just when your mind has been able to get around the most blood curdling history, you become aware that.. "folks, you ain't heard nothin' yet!!"
Because once the mind has been invaded by the idea of a god capable of love, there is no length to which the mind will not go to accommodate , to validate the idea.
Talk about turning a thoroughly rotten lemon into putrid lemonade.. and actually drinking it!!

A powerful Ultra Orthodox rabbi, Ovadiah Josef (sp?) is also the demented author, of the idea, subscribed to by his followers, with no awareness of the terrible irony..that god actually ALLOWED, indeed encouraged the Holocaust in order to punish Jews for Reform and Conservative Judaism, to show them the errors of ways that they might never have taken part of at all.
That impressive, noble precept is also used to try to make secular Jews guilty: secularity is actually lower, but not a lot, on the scale of post-Enlightenment ideas that have caused god to pour his venom upon men, women and children who WERE following the rules... often to the point of lunacy..
And not that it matters.... because it is all long ago and far away... but the Jews of Poland, where the majority of Holocaust victim lived for centuries, died in the showers, and went up in smoke from the ovens... hardly amassed weath.
They were desperately poor, often illiterate, and not at all to be confused with the Rothschilds with whom they are often tied in mythology...
While many of them were skilled at crafts... tailoring, carpentry, baking, even smithing, etc., as required in their isolated communities,
too many of them were what Karl Marx called "luftmenchen" which means that they earned their livings by whatever means possible....
but being a "luftmench" requires a certain amount of obsequiousness, and certainly a bit of verbal if not physical aggression...
So debased by their poverty, their isolation and their ignorance (Russian and Polish public education did not permit for the enrollment of Jewish children, unless a priest (Roman Catholic... there were no other kind) attested to the fact of the parents' conversion to Christianity.)
Were it not for the generally lax immigration procedures that brought so many thousands of emigres to American shores during the last years of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th, because their labor was desperately needed to provide human fuel for the industrial revolution taking place in the United States... many of those immigrants, Jews for sure, but Christians as well, would not for reasons of health, education, etc. ... have been allowed into the country...


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Your fanciful card games, movie sojourns and exciting overseas trips, that all take place within the four walls of an aged care retirement home, do not suggest your own children offered you the care, I gave my parents."

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by vanderpoel » Sat Nov 27, 2010 11:09 pm

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Sat Nov 27, 2010 11:20 pm

rrichar911:

With out faith, man would not exist.

Whoa...
Who sez?
What is your personal opinion based on no evidence whatever can hardly be taken seriously, especially since the publication of "Origin of Species," In 1859.
That and by the subsequent scientific evidence to corroborate Darwinian theory, we KNOW that man exists because he evolved from an ameba in a the water of a pond in East Africa..
Amebas, as I'm sure you will agree, do not have faith.....

There is... how often do you have to be told this, given your claim that you are in some vague and perhaps exaggerated way educated in mathematics and science?.... no evidence WHATEVER that faith which is at best not really identifiable other than that you claim you have it (but faith in WHAT?) plays any part in either the development, the longevity, indeed the TENACITY of our species.
.
Why then has it become our mortal enemy?

Come now, another of your emotional exaggerations (and after you spend so much time deriding the emotional in favor of what you imagine is your logic).
It's not YOUR mortal enemy... and thus far, despite your concerns, no one has even tried to divest you of your faith...
Not that it could be done... not even law, can change the way indoctrination contributes to our thinking processes.


Why such extreme positions?

Positions are not really extreme as long as they are verbal.
So far skepticism about the existence of god, and/or the value of faith, has caused, on the part of the skeptics at least, no massacres, no genocides, in fact no children teased or beaten on their way to and from school.
Would that religion has the same track record.
However, should someone wish to incarcerate you, or inflict some other punishment upon you for your faith ..... .... just call the ACLU.
In Texas, it's
P.O. Box 12905, Austin, TX 78711-2905
(512) 478-7300
(512) 478-7303 fax
And of course, the major cities have branches, as well.

Thanks for making me think.

Any time...
But about WHAT?
Don't hesitate to share.

Norma Manna Blum
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Your fanciful card games, movie sojourns and exciting overseas trips, that all take place within the four walls of an aged care retirement home, do not suggest your own children offered you the care, I gave my parents."

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by fromthehills » Sun Nov 28, 2010 2:24 am

nmblum wrote:The quote from Dan Quayle just knocks me out!!


I received a book of useless facts (though many of the "facts" seem dubious to me), there were many quotes from famous people. Dan Quayle's quotes struck me, and I started reading a little more on him. He said many ridiculous things that could almost leave Bush the Younger in the dust. He holds the title of Jurist, which is a little vague to me. By definition it means an expert in law, but I don't know if it's the same as an attorney or judge or paralegal, above, below, or somewhere in between. If someone knows the distinction, I'd be grateful.


... hardly amassed weath.
They were desperately poor, often illiterate, and not at all to be confused with the Rothschilds with whom they are often tied in mythology...
While many of them were skilled at crafts... tailoring, carpentry, baking, even smithing, etc., as required in their isolated communities,
too many of them were what Karl Marx called "luftmenchen" which means that they earned their livings by whatever means possible....
but being a "luftmench" requires a certain amount of obsequiousness, and certainly a bit of verbal if not physical aggression...
So debased by their poverty, their isolation and their ignorance (Russian and Polish public education did not permit for the enrollment of Jewish children, unless a priest (Roman Catholic... there were no other kind) attested to the fact of the parents' conversion to Christianity.)
Were it not for the generally lax immigration procedures that brought so many thousands of emigres to American shores during the last years of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th, because their labor was desperately needed to provide human fuel for the industrial revolution taking place in the United States... many of those immigrants, Jews for sure, but Christians as well, would not for reasons of health, education, etc. ... have been allowed into the country...


NMB


Granted, and I see your point. Often enough they weren't allowed to own property, either. Yet through a cultural skill, it seems, they were able to accumulate capital, and send the next generation to higher learning. Hell, I'm envious, in awe, I wish the Irish would have had this ideology, culturally. I will shut up, though, I may be treading into territory that I am not qualified to speak on.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by rrichar911 » Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:05 am

vanderpoel wrote:My parents protected me from the machinations of religious indoctrination during the impressionable years of my youth. Instead they convinced me that I was found behind the Canadian army after the liberation of Holland. It wasn't till I found out at the age of six that I would have been born curiously at the age of three that I realized that my parents lied with the best of them, and that they would have to feed me and let me live with them till I had my own driver's license. Not growing up with the fear of some lord and to young for a philosophy of life I never lost what I never had.

Rrichar has long nourished the belief that dumping his soul and the responsibility for his life at the feet of a sculpture will magically extend his life, but I don't think he is naive, but rather dosed in the indoctrinations of his belief. Yet, I understand why rrichar and other believers have such thirst for a meaning beyond the mundane. Once they find the folly in the tenets of their savior they thirst for another savior to save them from their savior. That goes right back to the comfort and easy living of early childhood at a time when their mamas fed them nipples and lies and told them they were destined.

Why live miserably without the entitlement of eternal life, the ultimate payoff of the extortion schemes we call religious? Yet the harder believers pray for answers the more they become just like their parents, inept at living without the blessing of a deity.


To the contrary, one is responsible for what they know, thus if one does not know anything, they are responsible for nothing. Thus many choose to know nothing. Those who choose to know, are thus the ones who accept responsibility.

It is kinda the same thing as getting drunk or using drugs to avoid taking responsibility for ones inner self. That is it is easier to block it out than be responsible for it.

I have found no folly in the tenets of Jesus.

Within consciousness is knowledge of truth. We must choose to either know or not to know. It is just on the other side of the veil.
Last edited by rrichar911 on Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Blacksamwell » Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:10 am

rrichar911 wrote:I have found no folly in the tenets of Jesus.

:lol: :lol: :lol:

That was a joke, right? ;)

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by fromthehills » Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:40 am

rrichar911 wrote:
To the contrary, one is responsible for what they know, thus if one does not know anything, they are responsible for nothing. Thus many choose to know nothing. Those who choose to know, are thus the ones who accept responsibility.
.



Thus the Eskimo/ missionary joke told thusly: Missionary: Accept Jesus in order to go to Heaven
Eskimo: What if I didn't know about Jesus?
Missionary:Well, we can't be held responsible for our ignorance.
Eskimo: Why did you tell me, then?

Thus the crux. Choosing a path versus being forced down a path are different matters altogether. By Christian dogma, we are thus forced down the path by threats of eternal damnation. Thus we are virtually held at gunpoint to obey the tenets of Jesus. You may argue that we are given free will, but it sounds the equivalent of a rape victim giving consent. She had the opportunity to refuse forced copulation if she would have chosen the bullet instead. It's BS, and ,thus, should not be given any credence. The fictional character, Jesus, falls short of any significant wisdom, and should be viewed as a sadistic tyrant, at best. Hopefully he will fall into obscurity with all the other mythological creatures.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Jeff D » Sun Nov 28, 2010 10:24 am

In American legal parlance, "jurist" is a label generally reserved for someone who is a working or retired judge (especially an appellate court judge) or (occasionally) a law professor who writes and teaches on legal procedure.

J. Danforth Quayle is not a "Jurist" or a "jurist." He has a law degree (J.D., for "juris doctor"), but his current occupation is in investment banking, in Arizona, where he and his wife Marilyn (also a lawyer) have lived for the past several years.

In the sub-population of "intellectual lightweights," Dan Quayle can more than hold his own with G.W.B. In fact, based just on the volume and the quality of his verbal gaffes, I'd put Quayle way ahead.

Edited to replace "had" with "and in 2nd paragraph.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by kennyc » Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:58 am

Jeff D wrote:. . . the approval of atheists.

Here is an interesting essay by Greta Christina. The title aptly summarizes the content: "Why Religious Believers Are So Desperate for the Atheist Seal of Approval."

There is some slight hyperbole, some over-generalization, in the essay, but I have seen this phenomenon played out here, on this Forum in its current and previous versions, and elsewhere on-line.



Thanks for that. Great Essay and a couple of great links from it as well:

http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta ... f-god.html

and

http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta ... n-god.html
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Lausten » Tue Nov 30, 2010 6:38 pm

I think it is interesting, but I believe that it is a limited number of creationists that either seek approval, or are trying to prove their point, or trying to convert our pitiful souls,
I see at least two distinct types of approval seeking, one where people knock on your door or otherwise attempt to get your attention and say "approve of this religion, join it, give it money" usually a result of indoctrination, the second is usually where people believe they have reasoned there way to a belief system and no matter how faulty that reasoning may be they believe it can be validated.

The article addresses this second kind. Greta points out the primary factor for why it is needed: They don't consider themselves associated with people who stand outside abortion clinics hurling insults, or gay bashers, or lower taxes for the wealthy, or home schooling creationists or any of that stuff and they don't want you to associate them with that either. They believe that their special twist, not believing in the virgin birth or being aware of the differences in the gospels somehow makes their way acceptable and not harmful.

Greta always takes her arguments a little too far, she is just too angry for me, but she lays this one out pretty well.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by rrichar911 » Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:48 pm

nmblum wrote:
vanderpoel wrote:
rrichar911 wrote:Atheist have rejected God, and thus look for a substitute, ..

C'mon now rrichar, why would the cured be looking for a substitute sickness?
Besides, not all atheists are recovering Catholics and the absence of a god is not a void.
Religion is not a missing limb if you never used it as a leg to stand on.


Wish I had thought to say that! Awesome!!
Not that rrichar911 cares that all his imagined notions about atheism or atheists have no connection with reality.
(In addition to his inability to separate skeptics (anyone who professes doubts) from those who have either let go, or never had a god in the first place.)
But he is not alone: it seems to be a conceit among believers who cling to it with the fervor of someone clinging to a piece of wood in the middle of an ocean, that atheism is simply another religion, only for people who seem to survive without religion.
rrichar911 apparently can't conceive of a world without god, and doesn't see why anyone else SHOULD conceive of a world without god.
One does have serious questions about what a country dominated by "libertarians" like ririchar911 would look like.
A graveyard, probably.
And segregated by race, undoubtedly.

NMB



It would look like America for most of the last 200 years, excluding the last 40 years.

What people believe is a choice. Thus it is possible to conceive of virtually anything, as evidenced by the fact that they do.

Belief in a universe that evolved with out any guidance is not what I find in the evidence.


"you know a tree by its fruit" = the scientific method
What really intrest me is whether God had any choice in the creation of the universe ~ Albert Einstein

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by rrichar911 » Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:31 pm

NMB

The observation is that ~ 90% of the thinking man kind does is logic by association. See saber tooth tiger, and throwing a ball in the air examples.

Logic by association is faith. It is man's ability to think that accounts for his survival, thus it is his faith that accounts for survival.

With out faith, you would not be able to conclude that if you lay down in a bed of ants, you will be bit. That if you jump into the grand canyon, you will fall to the bottom. That conclusion comes from logic by association. You watch something happen and have faith / assume, it will happen again.

There is no proof that laws under which the universe operates exist. It is an assumption that they do, a matter of faith.

It may or may not thus be a stretch to say man would not exist with out faith, as it might be possible to exist with out being able to think. For as you point out an ameba survives, but there is an assumption involved there to. The assumption that consciousness is not universal, and there is some evidence that it is.

So far skepticism about the existence of god, and/or the value of faith, has caused, on the part of the skeptics at least, no massacres, no genocides


To the contrary, the USSR and China were both officially secular states, and both practiced genocide. Some sources say as many as 100 million people.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stalin

Stalin followed the position adopted by Lenin that religion was an opiate that needed to be removed in order to construct the ideal communist society. To this end, his government promoted atheism through special atheistic education in schools, massive amounts of anti-religious propaganda, the antireligious work of public institutions (especially the Society of the Godless), discriminatory laws, and also a terror campaign against religious believers. By the late 1930s it had become dangerous to be publicly associated with religion.[78]



Calculating the number of victims
Researchers before the 1991 dissolution of the Soviet Union attempting to count the number of people killed under Stalin's regime produced estimates ranging from 3 to 60 million.[81]
Last edited by rrichar911 on Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by rrichar911 » Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:38 pm

fromthehills wrote:
rrichar911 wrote:
To the contrary, one is responsible for what they know, thus if one does not know anything, they are responsible for nothing. Thus many choose to know nothing. Those who choose to know, are thus the ones who accept responsibility.
.



Thus the Eskimo/ missionary joke told thusly: Missionary: Accept Jesus in order to go to Heaven
Eskimo: What if I didn't know about Jesus?
Missionary:Well, we can't be held responsible for our ignorance.
Eskimo: Why did you tell me, then?

Thus the crux. Choosing a path versus being forced down a path are different matters altogether. By Christian dogma, we are thus forced down the path by threats of eternal damnation. Thus we are virtually held at gunpoint to obey the tenets of Jesus. You may argue that we are given free will, but it sounds the equivalent of a rape victim giving consent. She had the opportunity to refuse forced copulation if she would have chosen the bullet instead. It's BS, and ,thus, should not be given any credence. The fictional character, Jesus, falls short of any significant wisdom, and should be viewed as a sadistic tyrant, at best. Hopefully he will fall into obscurity with all the other mythological creatures.



Why did you stick your hand in the fire?

When you were young your mother told you "don't touch that it will burn you". Did you then go the rest of your life with out being burnt? No.

What if you did believe and obey your mother, and now you are say 60 years old, and have never been burnt? You know intellectually that if you stick your hand in the fire it will burn, but you you really don't know, because you have never experienced it.

Would you try it out to find out? I bet most people would, because only by experiencing it your self will you know.

The assumption there is that people have a desire to know.

You think it is wrong?
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Jeff D » Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:50 pm

Bertrand Russell drew a distinction -- which I agree is crucial -- between "the will to believe" and the "desire to find out."

What quenches or satisfies the "desire to know"?

(1) Being handed an answer, ready-made, and being asked or instructed to just accept it, without question or inquiry?

or

(2) Being offered / pointed to the opportunity to make one's own inquiries, to have one's own experience, to carry out experiments on one's own?

The former may result in dependable knowledge or or bogus knowledge, fake knowledge being gained, or the pretense of knowledge. In fact, if the person handing out the ready-made "answers" is sloppy or dishonest, or if the person receiving he "answers" is too trusting, too credulous, the chances are pretty good that the "knowledge" gained will be bogus (falsehood, myth, superstition, rumor).

The latter path (2) can also result in mistakes, incorrect conclusions. Herk's posts here end with an epigram from Richard Feynman, that the number one objective is to avoid fooling ourselves (self-deception), and each of us is the easiest person to fool. Our brains are not perfect logic-engines. We can easily proceed on the basis of faulty premises or assumptions; we can miss important evidence, or misinterpret the evidence that we do see. Despite these problems, the second path -- indulging and expressing the "desire to find out" is a more dependable path to real knowledge than the first path. At least we can pay attention to the observations, experiments, and experiences of others under the same or similar conditions. In essence, we can "check each other's work."
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Blacksamwell » Tue Nov 30, 2010 10:11 pm

rrichar911 wrote:What people believe is a choice.[...]

Belief in a universe that evolved with out any guidance is not what I find in the evidence.

Because you've chosen to view the evidence that way, right?

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Lausten » Tue Nov 30, 2010 10:56 pm

What if you did believe and obey your mother, and now you are say 60 years old, and have never been burnt? You know intellectually that if you stick your hand in the fire it will burn, but you you really don't know, because you have never experienced it.

Would you try it out to find out? I bet most people would, because only by experiencing it your self will you know.

Hadn't really thought that one through had you? Replace "stick hand in fire" with "jump off a bridge". I think I'll just trust Mom on that one. How much are putting up for this bet of yours?
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Tue Nov 30, 2010 11:02 pm

rrichar911:
Belief in a universe that evolved with out any guidance is not what I find in the evidence.


What evidence is it, exactly, that you are privy to?
Until you speak to specifics, what you are offering is something that has nothing whatever to do with evidence, but rather with the fact that a universe that exists without any guidance is generally untenable to you.
And for the reason that it conflicts with your indoctrinated religious beliefs.
To the extent that is, that they are genuine beliefs rather than involuntary (and negative) reactions to a more complicated vision of the world than is dreamed of in your theology.


"you know a tree by its fruit" = the scientific method


LOL...
There is no other way to say this: a more ridiculous example of, or analogy to, scientific method has ever been uttered by you, and you have uttered many.

Unless you are simply hungry and looking for something to bite into, willing to either be pleased or repelled by the taste, you know absolutely NOTHING about a tree from looking at , or even eating its fruit....
And that goes whether you are an arborist OR the Pope.
Nothing (beyond its actually producing fruit) about the tree, and very little about the fruit itself.
Real knowledge takes work.... that's what science is about.
Wishful thinking is NOT work...... it's religion.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Tue Nov 30, 2010 11:24 pm

rrichar911 wrote:NMB

The observation is that ~ 90% of the thinking man kind does is logic by association. See saber tooth tiger, and throwing a ball in the air examples.

Logic by association is faith. It is man's ability to think that accounts for his survival, thus it is his faith that accounts for survival.

With out faith, you would not be able to conclude that if you lay down in a bed of ants, you will be bit. That if you jump into the grand canyon, you will fall to the bottom. That conclusion comes from logic by association. You watch something happen and have faith / assume, it will happen again.

There is no proof that laws under which the universe operates exist. It is an assumption that they do, a matter of faith.

It may or may not thus be a stretch to say man would not exist with out faith, as it might be possible to exist with out being able to think. For as you point out an ameba survives, but there is an assumption involved there to. The assumption that consciousness is not universal, and there is some evidence that it is.

So far skepticism about the existence of god, and/or the value of faith, has caused, on the part of the skeptics at least, no massacres, no genocides


To the contrary, the USSR and China were both officially secular states, and both practiced genocide. Some sources say as many as 100 million people.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stalin

Stalin followed the position adopted by Lenin that religion was an opiate that needed to be removed in order to construct the ideal communist society. To this end, his government promoted atheism through special atheistic education in schools, massive amounts of anti-religious propaganda, the antireligious work of public institutions (especially the Society of the Godless), discriminatory laws, and also a terror campaign against religious believers. By the late 1930s it had become dangerous to be publicly associated with religion.[78]



Calculating the number of victims
Researchers before the 1991 dissolution of the Soviet Union attempting to count the number of people killed under Stalin's regime produced estimates ranging from 3 to 60 million.[81]



Do not humiliate yourself by repeating this...which you do often, and is a standard of the Vatican hierarchy, and the meat of Christian Television...
Yes it is true that nations AND leaders that have disavowed religion have committed genocidal crimes....
HOWEVER, those crimes were NOT committed in the name of atheism or even secularity but for political reasons having nothing to with religion per se.
Most of the victims attributed to Bolshevism, during the Stalin era, were caused by failed agricultural programs, causing famine, disease, death.
And the chaos created by poor governmental policies PLUS the hostility of the rest of the world, (including specifically, the Vatican) lead to continual local uprisings that were summarily put down by military means, and later with the collusion of the justice system...

The history of religious wars throughout Christian history, however, including the Crusades, the subjugation and debasing of the indigenous peoples of the Western Hemispheres, done for reasons of money and power as well, were nevertheless, all pursued under Christ's banner.... saving the world for Christianity..
No one can make you believe what your mind cannot encompass, but one CAN remind you that merely repeating something a hundred times, not only doesn't make your banal thesis valid, it makes the anti-historical repetition sound more foolish with every try.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by fromthehills » Wed Dec 01, 2010 1:43 am

rrichar911 wrote:
fromthehills wrote:
rrichar911 wrote:
To the contrary, one is responsible for what they know, thus if one does not know anything, they are responsible for nothing. Thus many choose to know nothing. Those who choose to know, are thus the ones who accept responsibility.
.



Thus the Eskimo/ missionary joke told thusly: Missionary: Accept Jesus in order to go to Heaven
Eskimo: What if I didn't know about Jesus?
Missionary:Well, we can't be held responsible for our ignorance.
Eskimo: Why did you tell me, then?
Thus the crux. Choosing a path versus being forced down a path are different matters altogether. By Christian dogma, we are thus forced down the path by threats of eternal damnation. Thus we are virtually held at gunpoint to obey the tenets of Jesus. You may argue that we are given free will, but it sounds the equivalent of a rape victim giving consent. She had the opportunity to refuse forced copulation if she would have chosen the bullet instead. It's BS, and ,thus, should not be given any credence. The fictional character, Jesus, falls short of any significant wisdom, and should be viewed as a sadistic tyrant, at best. Hopefully he will fall into obscurity with all the other mythological creatures.



Why did you stick your hand in the fire?

When you were young your mother told you "don't touch that it will burn you". Did you then go the rest of your life with out being burnt? No.

What if you did believe and obey your mother, and now you are say 60 years old, and have never been burnt? You know intellectually that if you stick your hand in the fire it will burn, but you you really don't know, because you have never experienced it.

Would you try it out to find out? I bet most people would, because only by experiencing it your self will you know.

The assumption there is that people have a desire to know.

You think it is wrong?


I'm sorry, my uneducated mind failed to find the connection this response had with my post. However, I will try to address what I do understand.

All of us secretly touch the [insert whatever it was your mom warned you of]. It's quite a different thing to have experimented with something and be burned, and having the one that you love most, and trust most, grab your hand and hold it to the fire, as punishment, even after a warning, for the equivalent of leaving the seat up on the toilet.

This is why, in my opinion, that if I am found wrong, in the end, for not taking Pascal's Wager, I am better for it. I won't bow to a tyrant in life, and I surely won't bow to an unprovable tyrant in death. The fictional gods of the Bible,( the trinity, angels, saint's, martyrs, et cetera ) are not a good representation of the kindly mother trying to keep their child from harm, they more accurately represent the drunken, capricious, abusive father trying to keep their child from annoying or embarrassing him, and not violating any of his whimsical crotchets.

More to the point: if a god deserving of worship can't even stand up morally or intellectually to an uneducated, beer drinking, unkempt, one step above a vagabond carpenter that spends his social life typing on a computer... and worse, allegedly creates a universe, but decides to keep it secret in order to {!#%@} with us personally, on threat of eternal damnation..... Why should I even consider this as a possible ultimate truth? Why should anyone?

You speak of logic, and somehow correlate it to faith, but I submit that it would take an amazing amount of faith for me to follow a dogma based upon a jealous god, and I don't see the idea of this level of faith being logical.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Gord » Wed Dec 01, 2010 6:12 pm

rrichar91 wrote:What people believe is a choice.

No it isn't.

How would one "choose" to believe in God? I tried it for years before giving up.
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Wed Dec 01, 2010 6:29 pm

Gord wrote:
rrichar91 wrote:What people believe is a choice.

No it isn't.

How would one "choose" to believe in God? I tried it for years before giving up.

Not that it hasn't been said before, but worth saying again, if only to remind those who think that secularity is always taught (that is, the result of subversive input in the society) and that IF, IF, there is something approaching a "god gene," some of us were beyond doubt born without it.
Were I subjected to having my fingernails pulled out, I might acquiesce in swearing a belief in the supernatural.
Might.
But it would be a lie, employed to abet my survival (a Darwinian concept) having absolutely nothing to do with consciousness: for me there is no god, in any shape or form.
He (or she, if feminists want to insist on anything so thoroughly inane.... as in WHO cares?..a silly idea is a silly idea, sexual identity doesn't improve it) simply doesn't, cannot exist.
I thought it was a ridiculous conception at five years of age, and haven't altered my perception yet, at many times five.....through thick, thin, peace, war, sickness and health, winning or losing at poker and craps, raising children, love and the loss of it.
And I always welcome the invitation, tacit or actual, to say it again and again in case there is anyone listening or reading who still thinks something is amiss in his or her moral or ideational substance because they have only been paying lip service to the idea of a god, for however long the subterfuge has been forced upon them.

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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by vanderpoel » Wed Dec 01, 2010 8:54 pm

Well said Norma.
But I can't agree on gender not improving stupidity...
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:30 am

vanderpoel wrote:Well said Norma.
But I can't agree on gender not improving stupidity...



Do you mean "improving stupidity" as making a given proposition MORE stupid?
Or less stupid?
Whenever I hear women insisting (as if they are generating a revolution or have discovered a cure for cancer) that god is female and should be addressed with the appropriate pronoun, it makes me think of a wagon rolling backwards into a ditch...



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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by Gord » Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:52 pm

nmblum wrote:Whenever I hear women insisting (as if they are generating a revolution or have discovered a cure for cancer) that god is female and should be addressed with the appropriate pronoun, it makes me think of a wagon rolling backwards into a ditch...

Are you saying women are bad drivers? ;)
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by nmblum88 » Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:42 pm

Gord wrote:
nmblum wrote:Whenever I hear women insisting (as if they are generating a revolution or have discovered a cure for cancer) that god is female and should be addressed with the appropriate pronoun, it makes me think of a wagon rolling backwards into a ditch...

Are you saying women are bad drivers? ;)


Not at all... there are some ways in which men and women are equally inept and equally convinced that we are not so.
What I mean that if we are going to be thrust backwards into history I don't really care which gender is in charge of doing it: I am against it.

But no...I fully believe that men and women, although possessed of different brain formations, as well as physical attributes, physiological as well as biological are equally competent for tasks that involve intelligence and coordination..
And we are equally likely to have neither.
And that even were we not, we would still be entitled to equal perceptions before the law and in the market place.
However, I do think that the so-called "feminine revolution" was not uniformly inspiring and produced some fuzzy thinking and some really dopey (and ultimately harmful) sloganeering..... ending as it seems to have done with the further liberation of young men who are now absolved from rousing yourselves to much more than using the remote, or perhaps operating the TIVO.
Among those slogans, by the way was the supremely questionable repetition of...."if women ruled the world...." with its implication of the tender, life affirming, mother.... more reasonable than aggressive, more respectful of others than the rough -shod male.
Well maybe.
And then again maybe not...
I am currently reading Stacey Shiff's biography of Cleopatra... an interesting woman, who could easily, with another outfit and hairdo, be Margaret Thatcher.... such a pair of iron balls did she have, and willing to use them wherever and at whomever; Cleo, however, really had the juice, and ddin't need any slogans to fuel her fire OR her self-image.
But even Cleopatra seems less evocative of how flimsy the claims for women as loving peacemakers are, than the roster of the most outspokenly ignorant, thoughtless, and potentially dangerous of our own current crop of immediately identifiable politicians...
The number of females most memorable from the recently concluded election were Sarah Palin, stumper extrodinaire for the worst of our impulses, Christine O'Donnell, the shameless and fightening Mrs, Bachman, , the execrable Sharron Angle of Nevada, and so on...
I wouldn't want my own children to meet any of them in a dark street were they determined to have their way ..
All of them are as equally ill-informed as they are aggressive....
More than that... one of the most memorable photographs from the era of the integration of public schools in the American South, came out of New Orleans: a group of White women, obviously enraged, but the the main subject with a face contorted from feral and murderous anger, spitting... spitting, not at a policeman, or a National Guardsman, or a reporter, or even a representative of a Cilvil Rights organization... but at a five or six year old about to enter kindergarten...
Anyone who has sat next to a female fan at a boxing match or a cock-fight, knows what that picture can only try to convey.

Does any of that mean women are LESS qualified for public office than men or to drive the Conestoga Wagon than are men?
Of course not.
It just means that we should all be viewed with the same level of suspicion that not all PEOPLE are created equal, and women are as likely to have been shafted in the integrity and brains departments as are men.


NMB
Skepticism:
" Norma, you poor sad lonely alcoholic. You entire life is devoted to interrupting other people's posts on this forum, regardless of the topic, to tell them what's wrong with them. The irony is, here you are doing it again, with this very post.
Your fanciful card games, movie sojourns and exciting overseas trips, that all take place within the four walls of an aged care retirement home, do not suggest your own children offered you the care, I gave my parents."

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vanderpoel
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by vanderpoel » Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:51 pm

nmblum wrote:
vanderpoel wrote:Well said Norma.
But I can't agree on gender not improving stupidity...



Do you mean "improving stupidity" as making a given proposition MORE stupid?
Or less stupid?

As improving my eyesight.
Whenever I hear women insisting (as if they are generating a revolution or have discovered a cure for cancer) that god is female and should be addressed with the appropriate pronoun, it makes me think of a wagon rolling backwards into a ditch...



NMB

It makes me think that god is bisexual.
"When you put a toucan on a monkey’s ass, don’t be fooled by the brightly colored plumage, beware of the enormous bill!"

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izittrue
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Re: Why many thoughtful religious believers really want....

Post by izittrue » Thu Dec 09, 2010 8:04 pm

If he can't get it he buys it?
I am going to live forever because I believe in Santa Claus and God-
My sons 6 year old friend.