Ad Hominem Attacks
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21-12-2014, 09:35 AM
RE: Ad Hominem Attacks
(15-12-2014 12:54 PM)Mr. Boston Wrote:  What's your take? Is an attack on someone's beliefs automatically an attack on the person himself or is there a distinction?

I've been guilty of overdoing the challenging process myself, and am trying to learn to be more calm and gentle about it. I never mean harm, but I do get carried away sometimes.

I don't have a problem with theists, my problem is with atheists, because they pretend they want their beliefs challenged. And even though I know that's usually not true, I fall victim to wishful thinking and my own ego inflation needs etc.

If we wish to be people of reason, we should probably face the fact that the process of challenging other people's beliefs rarely accomplishes anything at all, and is mostly about ourselves and our own need to inflate our own self image and so on. With all that in mind, a sense of humor is probably the biggest asset any of us can bring to such discussions.

The exception of course would be behaviors. If anybody of any belief picks up a real gun and starts shooting real bullets, that's the time to be ruthless and fire back without reservation or apology.

But if it's just beliefs, it's wiser to focus on humor. Not that I always remember this myself. Do what I say and not what I do etc etc. :-)
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26-12-2014, 04:57 PM
RE: Ad Hominem Attacks
(15-12-2014 12:54 PM)Mr. Boston Wrote:  My take is that if they can love the sinner and hate the sin I can respect the believer and attack the beliefs.

What's your take? Is an attack on someone's beliefs automatically an attack on the person himself or is there a distinction?

I think this is an excellent opportunity to discuss what the phrase "I Am" means. If a person believes that they are their thoughts, feelings, and beliefs they may feel personally attacked whenever anyone disagrees with them. As I see it, "I am" the one who has the thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. I may argue for their validity, but I learning to be less threatened when they are proven wrong. My thoughts, feelings, and beliefs are in truth little more than the best understanding that I have at the moment.
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