Attack a Theist
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22-05-2013, 12:35 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(22-05-2013 10:14 AM)Mojch Wrote:  "Morality is not an argument which holds water with any of us. Morality represents the worst of religion from my stand point. It's the last refuge to which any argument is consigned. In the end something is wrong simply because it's wrong. That's all "morality" is a code word for."
To expand. When people use this word to justify something, it basically means the above. "I can't think of a reason, a real reason, so I'll state that it's immoral, and that's my justification for saying that it's wrong". It's a total cop out. You might as well say "It's whambango. It's KAFLUI. That's why it's wrong." It means about the same.

I see this all the time. We have a government position here, the "guardian of public morals"... What ? It's the most laughable idea ever. I guess his job is to stop people from doing lewd stuff in public because y'know, then we really know our civilization's gone to the dogs.

Quote:This literally blew my mind. Most atheists I know are adamant that morality (as in the idea that some actions are objectively right / wrong in certain circumstances) DOES exist and that it is independent of any religion. Some claim that it is a result of evolution selecting for those social traits that are most likely to propagate the species.
You see, this is where we get into semantics. I say this:

1. There is no rule that says it is wrong to kill someone, to rape them, to do whatever. Nothing in *nature* prohibits it. Animals kill each other all the time. We kill animals. We kill each other. There is no consequence coded into the laws of the universe that makes it wrong or right.

2. But *human society* defines right and wrong. i.e. relative morals. The Greeks had this idea going thousands of years ago. Dunno why the rest of us took so long to catch on Dodgy The *reasons* that human societies tend to converge on the same set of rules are evolutionary (in my view), in the sense that societies that practice a certain degree of lawfulness etc tend to do better than others which do not, to edge them out in the competition to survive, and to gain more adherents.

2a. However note that for example, perfectly viable societies have existed with vastly different ideas about even such basic things as killing (e.g. Aztec civilization).

So ja, that common set of common sense rules that say things like that it's not very nice to be nasty to your neighbour can be termed morals, and I guess you could even say that they're absolute in a sense that they're the intersection of the sets of rules that each separate society has come up with. But they're not absolute in the sense that they're "natural" or "morally right" or any other such stuff. They're absolute by convention.

That's my view of morality...

Quote:Are you seriously claiming to reject all arguments based on morality? Do you assert that morality of some kind, whether secular or religious, does not exist? If not, then why reject all arguments based on it? If so, what principles should humanity use to order society?
I reject arguments who's sole premise consists of the statement "It's immoral", and I am skeptical of any argument which includes it. It just reeks of "I'm really scratching around for a reason and oh I know, I'll just say it's immoral, 'cos that's a great little debate we can have and obscures the fact that I got no real reason"...

Principles humans should order their society by: whatever works. But principles that I will fight for: freedom to do what I want, equality, and all that other high minded shit.
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22-05-2013, 12:40 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
Oh forgot. There is of course operating on the individual level some evolutionary stuff as well. Such as being cooperative as members of a family group etc. That stuff is the reason for example, that you feel a bit of a shudder when you try to comprehend a serial killer or whatever. So there are those kinda more 'low level' morals also built into us by evolution.

Again, my view. But ya did ask Tongue
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22-05-2013, 12:40 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(22-05-2013 06:39 AM)Dom Wrote:  Any debate/discussion is not going to let you know the entire structure of reference a person has. It would take quite a while to verbalize a world image completely.

I think Mjoch is a critical thinker within the confines of his religion, and I appreciate that and I think most all of us enjoy talking with such a person.

I hope he has the stamina and we have the general human respect for these conversations to continue. It must be quite difficult to try to stay on top of all these views we put forth, and I hope Mjoch will continue to try. It is a rare occurrence that we get a religious person here who is not a drive-by shooter and actually wants to discuss things on a real level.

So I would suggest we try and deal with one topic at a time and perhaps over time we will touch on a lot of them. I for one enjoy the exercise in thought, and the process of rethinking issues that we already formed firm opinions about. It's called growth and helps everyone involved to better formulate one's world view.

It is refreshing to talk to a theist who is not trying to convert people, and I think that is why KC gets along well with us also.

So let's try not to overwhelm Mjoch. There is lots of time to cover all kinds of topics.

I completely agree. That's why I didn't end my comment with "shoo fly" in another thread. It's rare I find a theist that I don't want to say it to.

And your last sentence totally echos my thoughts.

We can be an overwhelming bunch. Smile


God is a concept by which we measure our pain -- John Lennon

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22-05-2013, 12:50 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(21-05-2013 01:38 PM)Mojch Wrote:  I agree that tolerance has many positive impacts. However, do NOT confuse tolerance and acceptance with a requirement that I accept the gay worldview.

What is this The Gay Worldview of which you speak? New talk show, perhaps? Fashionable brand of eyewear? Possibly, a trendy restaurant? 'Splain, please.


I can not speak for anyone here other than myself but I know that my "worldview" is just that - my own. What shapes it is very much entirely up to me. I control what informs me and am very much in charge of my reaction to what informs me. If unfamiliar with something, I make every attempt to understand it and very sincerely so - with an emphasis on empathy and compassion.

There are many here - many - who have dealt with their entire world being completely turned on it's head. I am quite certain they never confuse tolerance and acceptance with a requirement that anything be blindly accepted. However, they have at least experienced one thing prior to their rejection of it - and this thing is very much accepted.

Many under the atheist umbrella often have very precisely defined, well reasoned and logical reasons for their rejection of a god concept and most especially a concept of religion. Among other things, their experience informs their 'worldview' and they are in charge of their reaction to what informs them. My experience with them, informs me of this and I temper my understanding of them with empathy and compassion.
***

Since you are a lawyer; let's talk Atticus.
Atticus was white and was even told he didn't have to do his job and defend a Black man charged with the rape of a Southern white woman in the late 30s. He knew nothing would change - certainly not for this one man. He also knew that if he didn't take this case, change would never even begin. Ever. Everyone knew what would happen but at least truth would be briefly glimpsed and not remain strangled within the politely racist bargain of everyday life. The only shameful thing about truth is when it's kept hidden.

When the chance for change comes before us, we are charged with everything we have - everything that informs us - to step up to the plate and take a swing at maybe, useless odds. We simply do this to better the odds for the next at bat. We do our job. Time will do it's thing.
***

Fuck, what was I asking about? Consider Oh yea; what's this about The Gay Worldview? Will I be obliged to accessorize in some particular way? You seem to be more informed than I .... ?

Then again, I might just be dickin' with you. Drinking Beverage Or not.

A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move to higher levels. ~ Albert Einstein
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22-05-2013, 01:38 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
***Bucky Ball, Morondog, & Kim:

Apologies. I should not have used the phrase "gay worldview" due to its lack of specificity and the obvious fact that not all gays share a singular worldview. I admit my error, beg your forgiveness, and, in penance, I shall hang my head in shame for a full ten seconds. Henceforth, I state my position as...

"However, do NOT confuse tolerance and acceptance with a requirement that I accept the position that homosexuality is not immoral." (And, for those following all the various discussions in this thread, I may be on the verge of admitting that homosexuality could, in certain modern circumstance, be a moral activity. We shall have to see if someone can prove it to me. I still have serious reservations.)

***Morondog: Totally off-topic. Is there an actual dog behind your name or something? Because every time I see it I imagine this poor, ignorant creature bumping into things, spilling his/her water, and generally being pathetic. As an animal lover, it is a sad image.

***The Bearded Dude:

No. My title was a rhetorical choice designed to inspire interest. So long as the questioner is asking with the same open-mind that they request of the questioned, I think all questioning is a good thing. Question, Question, Question.

***EVERYONE:

Thanks so much for the replies so far. However, I am going to take tonight off from replying! My wife demands some of my time as well. I will return tomorrow and attempt to address any replies that have built up (including those from earlier today I have not yet addressed).

Sincerely,

Mojch
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22-05-2013, 01:42 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(22-05-2013 01:38 PM)Mojch Wrote:  ***Bucky Ball, Morondog, & Kim:

Apologies. I should not have used the phrase "gay worldview" due to its lack of specificity and the obvious fact that not all gays share a singular worldview. I admit my error, beg your forgiveness, and, in penance, I shall hang my head in shame for a full ten seconds. Henceforth, I state my position as...

"However, do NOT confuse tolerance and acceptance with a requirement that I accept the position that homosexuality is not immoral." (And, for those following all the various discussions in this thread, I may be on the verge of admitting that homosexuality could, in certain modern circumstance, be a moral activity. We shall have to see if someone can prove it to me. I still have serious reservations.)

***Morondog: Totally off-topic. Is there an actual dog behind your name or something? Because every time I see it I imagine this poor, ignorant creature bumping into things, spilling his/her water, and generally being pathetic. As an animal lover, it is a sad image.

***The Bearded Dude:

No. My title was a rhetorical choice designed to inspire interest. So long as the questioner is asking with the same open-mind that they request of the questioned, I think all questioning is a good thing. Question, Question, Question.

***EVERYONE:

Thanks so much for the replies so far. However, I am going to take tonight off from replying! My wife demands some of my time as well. I will return tomorrow and attempt to address any replies that have built up (including those from earlier today I have not yet addressed).

Sincerely,

Mojch

Good! I agree. I don't think a lot of theists necessarily agree with you though, or they at least are not honest about it.

I'll just ask a few more general ones for now until I think of something more specific (as you have a lot of people asking questions).

Do you think christians are persecuted in America today?

Do you think christians (wholesale) were ever persecuted in America (negating your opinion on the last question)?

What would christian persecution entail? (in today's terms, nobody is getting fed to a lion today)

Are politics and religion decoupled in the US?

“Science is simply common sense at its best, that is, rigidly accurate in observation, and merciless to fallacy in logic.”
—Thomas Henry Huxley
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22-05-2013, 05:22 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
OH NOES!!!!!!!111!!!! NOT THE GAY WORLDVIEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1111!!!!

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22-05-2013, 06:11 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(22-05-2013 07:09 AM)Mojch Wrote:  ***To CJS: I too find our discussion interesting. Could you elaborate on why you believe arguments about theism and atheism should not be conducted from an ideal perspective? For example, if I have a theory that attempts to explain some phenomenon, I do not reject that theory because it doesn't work when conditions are not ideal. Instead, a design an experiment necessary to create the ideal conditions and then I test the truth or falsity of my theory. Why should religion, which is at its core a theory of the entirety of human experience, be any different?

Sincerely,

Mojch

You can discuss religion from standpoint of ideals. However, remember that atheism is simply lack of belief in a deity. Religion may be such a theory of human ideals, as you say, but I simply do not believe in god, which makes me an atheist and not bound by perceived religious ideals (not to mention most of them are far from the ideals they claim to be). You believe in scripture/religion/deity (I presume) and I do not share that belief that they are valid. I also do not share any belief that homosexuality or any sex between consenting adults is wrong and reiterate my fear of living in a place where government would interfere in such private matters. This is what I believe, and it may not be logical to you, and I may not be able to say this in a format you want or answer questions as you wish. Others have made better points on this than I did, and I am not a lawyer. I did a brief stint on my high school debate team, but that was eons ago!

Incidentally, all the argument, rationalization, and mental gymnastics were part of the reason I no longer believe. I eventually found that the "reasons" and apologetics given for belief and faith did not hold up in my mind. Again I would encourage you to read Seth's book and other deconversion stories, and lively debates here. They can articulate the discrepancies, errors, violence, horror, etc. in the bible better than I can. Most of us did not get to the point of atheism lightly. Many of us searched, read, studied, talked to others, etc. but in the end decided we cannot make ourselves believe something we do not. I cannot speak for all of us as we are all different, some never believed at all, some were raised by skeptics or doubted all along, but many left religion gradually or otherwise.

Good luck in your quest. I hope you find whatever answers you are looking for.
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22-05-2013, 06:13 PM (This post was last modified: 22-05-2013 06:20 PM by ReadAndConsider.)
RE: Attack a Theist
(22-05-2013 07:09 AM)Mojch Wrote:  ***To ReadandConsider: Interesting but I reject this approach to truth finding as logically unsound. If and when I have less on my plate with others, we can discuss this at length, perhaps even in the Boxing Arena.

I think that it says a lot that you're dismissive of / unwilling to engage on a question that is essentially at the foundation of any sort of religion that involves a personal god. Calling it "logically unsound" is the funniest way I can imagine for you to walk away from it, too. To be clear, by saying that it's "logically unsound" to examine communication with a deity from a moral standpoint, you're saying that there is no logical way to engage with a god. As such, you're stating that your whole belief system is founded upon an illogical choice - to believe that a god has gotten in touch with humans.

Edit:
And should you attempt to say that what you meant is that the question is tied up in emotion and morality rather than "simple facts" like when events happened or how evolution works, then I'll just point to some of the other emotional and moral issues you've been engaging on - such as homosexuality.
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22-05-2013, 06:14 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(22-05-2013 12:50 PM)kim Wrote:  What is this The Gay Worldview of which you speak? New talk show, perhaps? Fashionable brand of eyewear? Possibly, a trendy restaurant? 'Splain, please.

There is a secret training camp in Northern CA. . I am not allowed to divulge where.
There, they (we) are taught how to order fu-fu drinks, purchase feather boas, say "fabulous", lisp, what all the trendy shit is, and when one is allowed to wear whites. Dodgy

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein
Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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