A-believerism or A-deism?
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19-02-2013, 01:01 AM
A-believerism or A-deism?
I'm especially interested in exploring some aspects of atheist thought that seem notoriously unexamined.

Bertrand Russell's 1959 BBC interview is a great example of one. After considering "Christian dogmas" and having "discarded the last of them" at 18, he decided that there was no reason to believe in a god. (See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQJ3sqkdCRE @ 1:53 into the video)

Really Bertrand? You ruled out an existential possibility by discarding irrational human fabrications? That's beneath a great logician like you.

Atheists seem more interested in being a-believerists than a-deists. Am I right?
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19-02-2013, 01:20 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
He is right though.
That is correct, in fact, let's make it more specific: anti-fundamentalist.

We don't really mind deists that much, although we disagree with them.

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19-02-2013, 01:45 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
Cool. Interesting comment on anti-fundamentalism. So you're saying that, for example, you have no problem with "faith" per se, just with the irrational extremes some people take it to?

I'd love to know if that's a widespread view among atheists. Are you speaking for atheism in general or for yourself only?

Haha, what is our problem with disagreement? Of course we disagree with each other. It's a necessary feature of finite cognition, unless everyone and his brother were to stand on the same spot on the face of the planet and look at the same thing from the same angle at the same time. Then most of us would probably largely agree on what we saw. We'd still disagree about what it means.

Agreement is boring. So is fighting. Learning from each other--especially from the things we disagree about--now THERE's some fun! :-)
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19-02-2013, 02:00 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
(19-02-2013 01:45 AM)millardjmelnyk Wrote:  ...
I'd love to know if that's a widespread view among atheists.
...

I will not speak for all.

Personally, I could give a flying buttress what someone believes. It's how that belief influences the wider society that matters.

Maybe it's the field I work in but for me, decisions are made on processes and facts and not hearsay and rumour.

It just so happens that I regard all religions to be based on hearsay, rumour, legend etc.

Prove to me that the 'facts' you (generic use of the word 'you') are using to make your decisions are actually the revealed word of an actual god and I will take you seriously.

And, yes, I agree, somewhat ironically, with your definition of 'fun'.

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19-02-2013, 02:42 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
You follow the pattern I usually find with atheists: you generalize a very recent, limited, (but extremely vocal) brand of religion--scripture-as-authority based religions like Judaism, some of Christianity, and Islam--over the entries spectrum of religion. Neither accurate nor fair. Don't get me wrong-- I'm an anti-religionist, so I'm not defending religion. I just find it odd that atheists would start with the straw man of fundamentalism, knock I it down, and then think they have handled the issue.

Thinking we've dealt with the issue of god by dealing with belief systems that are clearly irrational is like thinking we've handled the issue of abuse by saying that abusers are crazy and wrong. Something makes them do it. Until we understand it, we can cry foul all we want, but it won't solve the problem.
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19-02-2013, 02:44 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
oops. make that "over the entire spectrum of religion"
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19-02-2013, 02:53 AM (This post was last modified: 19-02-2013 02:58 AM by Tartarus Sauce.)
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
(19-02-2013 01:45 AM)millardjmelnyk Wrote:  Cool. Interesting comment on anti-fundamentalism. So you're saying that, for example, you have no problem with "faith" per se, just with the irrational extremes some people take it to?

I'd love to know if that's a widespread view among atheists. Are you speaking for atheism in general or for yourself only?

Haha, what is our problem with disagreement? Of course we disagree with each other. It's a necessary feature of finite cognition, unless everyone and his brother were to stand on the same spot on the face of the planet and look at the same thing from the same angle at the same time. Then most of us would probably largely agree on what we saw. We'd still disagree about what it means.

Agreement is boring. So is fighting. Learning from each other--especially from the things we disagree about--now THERE's some fun! :-)

Hmmm, let me put it this way. The concept of a deity is going to inherently rely on some form of faith. Deists tend to, at least from my understanding, believe in a rather abstract entity. It is impersonal and possibly entirely uninterested in human affairs. It simply made the universe to be self-sustaining with natural laws.

Perhaps I am being too assuming with some of the details, but that has generally been what I conceive deistic thoughtline to entail. Sure, I'd tell you that there is no conclusive proof such a god exists, but that's as far as the conversation can really go.

Hardcore theists, on the other hand, are suffering from a persistent form of denialism. Empirical evidence and logical reasoning actively discredit their deity and/or ESPECIALLY their scripture. They don't purport their beliefs to the evidence, they do the opposite. They partake in the antithesis of scientific inquiry: make a conclusion first, find supporting evidence, dismiss contradicting evidence out of hand. Furthermore, the pathways for justifying all types of bigoted asshole behavior is opened up, as is incorporating the deity they worship into nothing more than an extension of their ego. The list goes on and on.

I would contend that deists are failing to purport their beliefs to the evidence in regard to only one topic and doesn't necessarily result illogical spillover while investigating any other subject. No crusades against science, no bigotry justification, and no ego stroking. Fundies suffer from a form of psychosis, interpreting reality through blinder-covered eyes that analyze data through a broken filter.

I realize I haven't talked about moderate theists, and I wanted to go over some other things as well as better clarify some of my points, but I have already spent about 45 minutes typing this post on my phone, so I will end here.

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19-02-2013, 03:00 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
(19-02-2013 02:42 AM)millardjmelnyk Wrote:  You ...

Who? Not me, I think, I didn't mention 'fundamentalism'

A couple of techie pointers...

1. You can indicate who you are replying to by doing as I have just done, i.e. clicking on the 'reply' button on a specific post to which you want to reply.

2. You can edit an earlier post (yours not other people's) by clicking the 'edit' button under your own post.

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19-02-2013, 03:14 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
(19-02-2013 03:00 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(19-02-2013 02:42 AM)millardjmelnyk Wrote:  You ...

Who? Not me, I think, I didn't mention 'fundamentalism'

Well I did, but that was part of my point: most atheists take the most issue with fundamentalists, and most of our criticism is directed at them.

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19-02-2013, 07:00 AM
RE: A-believerism or A-deism?
(19-02-2013 03:14 AM)Tartarus Sauce Wrote:  
(19-02-2013 03:00 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Who? Not me, I think, I didn't mention 'fundamentalism'

Well I did, but that was part of my point: most atheists take the most issue with fundamentalists, and most of our criticism is directed at them.


Because fundamentalists cause real-world problems.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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