Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
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02-06-2016, 02:51 PM
Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
Hi there,
I am an avid reader of Sagan, Dawkins et al, and before reading "The God Delusion" (among other books by these authors), I always wrestled with the fact that a huge majority of human beings still believe in the nonsense of religion (Muslims, Jews, Catholics or Christians and the like).

The best answer I could find about this rather fundamental subject is the one provided by Dawkins that poses that our species was designed to believe, namely, that in order to survive, children are wired to absolutely believe everything their parents tell them to do, for example, not getting close or jump a cliff, or get their fingers into the fire, etc etc. Consequently, we as we grow up, get used to believe everything our parents --or any other adult says-- in regards to the origins of the Universe, life, etc.

My question here is: why then atheists and, more specifically, born atheists find it very difficult to believe whatever our parents or any other "authority" says about these topics from a dogmatic or non demonstrable viewpoint? Are we freaks? Are we a rarity?
Blush
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02-06-2016, 03:12 PM (This post was last modified: 02-06-2016 03:23 PM by skyking.)
RE: Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
Welcome Paty. You pose a great question. Would I be an atheist now if not for my atheist parents? I did not have to break the woo cycle. Would I have, given the opposite upbringing?
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02-06-2016, 03:59 PM
RE: Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
(02-06-2016 02:51 PM)PatySeti Wrote:  Hi there,
I am an avid reader of Sagan, Dawkins et al, and before reading "The God Delusion" (among other books by these authors), I always wrestled with the fact that a huge majority of human beings still believe in the nonsense of religion (Muslims, Jews, Catholics or Christians and the like).

The best answer I could find about this rather fundamental subject is the one provided by Dawkins that poses that our species was designed to believe, namely, that in order to survive, children are wired to absolutely believe everything their parents tell them to do, for example, not getting close or jump a cliff, or get their fingers into the fire, etc etc. Consequently, we as we grow up, get used to believe everything our parents --or any other adult says-- in regards to the origins of the Universe, life, etc.

My question here is: why then atheists and, more specifically, born atheists find it very difficult to believe whatever our parents or any other "authority" says about these topics from a dogmatic or non demonstrable viewpoint? Are we freaks? Are we a rarity?
Blush

We are the "pattern seeking" monkeys. Science has been around for an infinitesimally small length of human history. Humans need to try to find patterns, as it promotes survival .... but the macro pattern recognition is not applicable to non-macro levels of reality. Some people are more skeptical than others. They don't buy snake oil. It's for sale everywhere. Especially at church.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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02-06-2016, 05:35 PM
RE: Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
I think it does depend on the person and their unique traits. For me religion always seemed an emotional need, not just to fit in but to feel a connection to a divine supernatural force either for comfort or inspiration. I maybe needed this as a kid but once I got to my pre-teen years I simply didn't anymore. Also my parents sucked, as in my dad was abusive, my mother neglectful and my friends started acting like jerks so I had no social reason to continue believing, the exact opposite, I wanted to question authority at that point.

I do find it surprising how accurate some tests can be like the Myers-Briggs personality test, I always end up with INTP type who are analytical thinkers, we research a lot, can get bogged down in details, etc. so any investigation of the accuracy of religion will turn up false for me. I've never found in any of my studies any reason that is compelling enough to believe in a deity. I can't speak for others but I think for myself I get too much of an emotional benefit to studying science and finding holes in religion than I would if I just believed in it.

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02-06-2016, 05:41 PM
RE: Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
(02-06-2016 02:51 PM)PatySeti Wrote:  Hi there,
I am an avid reader of Sagan, Dawkins et al, and before reading "The God Delusion" (among other books by these authors), I always wrestled with the fact that a huge majority of human beings still believe in the nonsense of religion (Muslims, Jews, Catholics or Christians and the like).

The best answer I could find about this rather fundamental subject is the one provided by Dawkins that poses that our species was designed to believe, namely, that in order to survive, children are wired to absolutely believe everything their parents tell them to do, for example, not getting close or jump a cliff, or get their fingers into the fire, etc etc. Consequently, we as we grow up, get used to believe everything our parents --or any other adult says-- in regards to the origins of the Universe, life, etc.

My question here is: why then atheists and, more specifically, born atheists find it very difficult to believe whatever our parents or any other "authority" says about these topics from a dogmatic or non demonstrable viewpoint? Are we freaks? Are we a rarity?
Blush

I think we can thank the internet for making information available to everyone, and the fact that religiosity is on a decline in 1st world countries due to the aging out of the believers. The younger generation grew up with the www a click away, and unfettered access to information and research. The younger generation seems to have a lower gullibility factor and quickly figured out that santa claus, the easter bunny and jesus are all fabricated nonsense with zero substantiating evidence.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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02-06-2016, 06:14 PM
RE: Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
(02-06-2016 05:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  I think we can thank the internet for making information available to everyone, and the fact that religiosity is on a decline in 1st world countries due to the aging out of the believers. The younger generation grew up with the www a click away, and unfettered access to information and research. The younger generation seems to have a lower gullibility factor and quickly figured out that santa claus, the easter bunny and jesus are all fabricated nonsense with zero substantiating evidence.

You make a great point and honestly any conversation I have with a theist who goes on and on about how the Bible is all true and they have no clue about scientific theories I can't help but think "How do you not know this information? It's readily available!" They just go out of their way to ignore it and of course their church leaders encourage them to stay away from it and dismiss it whenever possible. It's sad but also heartening to know many younger people are taking advantage of the wealth of knowledge all around them.

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02-06-2016, 06:26 PM
RE: Designed by Evolution to Believe in the Absurd or Supernatural
(02-06-2016 02:51 PM)PatySeti Wrote:  Hi there,
I am an avid reader of Sagan, Dawkins et al, and before reading "The God Delusion" (among other books by these authors), I always wrestled with the fact that a huge majority of human beings still believe in the nonsense of religion (Muslims, Jews, Catholics or Christians and the like).

The best answer I could find about this rather fundamental subject is the one provided by Dawkins that poses that our species was designed to believe, namely, that in order to survive, children are wired to absolutely believe everything their parents tell them to do, for example, not getting close or jump a cliff, or get their fingers into the fire, etc etc. Consequently, we as we grow up, get used to believe everything our parents --or any other adult says-- in regards to the origins of the Universe, life, etc.

My question here is: why then atheists and, more specifically, born atheists find it very difficult to believe whatever our parents or any other "authority" says about these topics from a dogmatic or non demonstrable viewpoint? Are we freaks? Are we a rarity?
Blush

I'm going to go out here on a limb and say you probably don't have kids.

Kids don't believe everything their parents say, not by a long chalk. Yes, evolution does get involved with parental authority protecting the young from harm as many animals do but like many other animals much depends on luck because young do not mind consistently and even act out arbitrarily.

Evolution also provides for independent thinkers and always has. It's how we learned and adapted and grew.

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