Exam question: what would you have done?
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01-05-2011, 03:34 AM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
Honestly, if I'm about to graduate, I want to get the hell out as soon as possible, and transferring at the last minute or failing the exam on purpose would delay any plans I had for the future (a hard choice, like No J points out). So I would've filled the exam like you did, having to live through the douchebag remark by the religion teacher while remaining silent about it. If I were to respond to him he could fail me, and even if I contested the failed mark it would've been too much trouble, when all I want is to graduate ASAP.

I would have been pissed about it, and I would have written a letter later on, with the intent to give/send it to him immediately after graduating; first stating that the purpose of the letter would be to answer what he said to me after the exam, then to admit that I only filled the exam as he intended to avoid getting failed, and that the real answer I would've given would've been this: writing the rebuttal of each of Aquinas's laws as I would've done so in the religion exam. I would end it saying "So in conclusion, it turns out that Aquinas's laws don't really prove the existence of a god. As I pointed out in the beginning of the letter, one of the things you said was that I was 'the deluded one'. Now, I ask of you to please refrain from deluding yourself by thinking that such weak, easily debunkable arguments from the Middle Ages could convince me, or any other atheist, that there is a god". (of course considering I'd be 17 in this hypothetical scenario I doubt I'd say it exactly like that, but I'd most likely follow the same structure)

Obviously the end result would be that the teacher would think that I was dishonest and a hypocrite by not answering like I really would've (you filthy little atheist!), even though the question on the exam clearly stated that you have to prove the existence of a god with Aquinas's laws by using the textbook answers (which, like Ghost said, is comparable to him explaining how Pol Pot used charismatic leadership to take over Cambodia, in the end doing so doesn't make him a Pol Pot supporter). But I wouldn't have cared. My only intention would've been to knock him off his high horse.

You know, if you still hate him for that incident, if it's not too late, and that dipshit teacher is still working at the same school (or you have his email), you can still send him a letter if you want to. If he's as much of a douche as one could figure out from his remark at you, surely he often tells the story to his students in class or while hanging out at the teacher's lounge about that one young deluded student who was misled by the internet / the media / Satan / etc. and "got back on the right track" thanks to him and his classes. It's not really something to be worked up about, because it's clear he is a douche, but if you're still a little bitter about it, writing up a letter one afternoon while you're bored and sending it wouldn't be such a bad idea IMO.

The God excuse: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument. "God did it." Anything we can't describe must have come from God. - George Carlin

Whenever I'm asked "What if you're wrong?", I always show the asker this video: http://youtu.be/iClejS8vWjo Screw Pascal's wager.
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01-05-2011, 04:13 AM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
(01-05-2011 03:34 AM)Efrx86 Wrote:  You know, if you still hate him for that incident, if it's not too late, and that dipshit teacher is still working at the same school (or you have his email), you can still send him a letter if you want to. If he's as much of a douche as one could figure out from his remark at you, surely he often tells the story to his students in class or while hanging out at the teacher's lounge about that one young deluded student who was misled by the internet / the media / Satan / etc. and "got back on the right track" thanks to him and his classes. It's not really something to be worked up about, because it's clear he is a douche, but if you're still a little bitter about it, writing up a letter one afternoon while you're bored and sending it wouldn't be such a bad idea IMO.

I googled him... he was a teacher until a few months ago. He recently got promoted to principal. I suppose being a douche pays off in the end.

You're right. I ought to write him something. I'll let you know if he answers.

"Infinitus est numerus stultorum." (The number of fools is infinite)
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01-05-2011, 07:20 AM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
I would have give all the correct answers and then end with a tiny, tiny decisive note at the end.

"So clearly, Zeus exists"

Observer

Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
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01-05-2011, 09:07 AM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
I would have to agree with Ghost on this. Even at the time when I was beginning to question religion I would have been uncomfortable with that question. The idea of religion in school made me nervous and uneasy so I avoided it like the plague. Having said that I would have treated as you did...just another question demonstrating what the talking head in front of me told me to memorize. There are plenty of classes where teachers have spewed bullshit and personal opinions at me but that does not mean I have to believe them or accept them. I just write the paper, take the test and move on. I take a little bit more away knowing what I believe and knowing what they believe.

“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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01-05-2011, 09:58 AM
 
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
Firstly, how long has it been since you've had to tolerate this professor? (teacher) He's demonstrating an intolerance for atheism that's right on time with the medieval attitudes afforded the present day time frame Aquinas was enmeshed in.

He demonstrated his lack of Christian ethics, when he took smug satisfaction in such a weak patrician medieval (which says a lot in itself) exegesis Summa Theologica, that was a five volume masterpiece of it's time and that now, even in your professors time, is considered out dated and flawed and unworthy of the respect it was afforded in it's day, by learned scholars of this era.

Boiling down 5 volumes into apologist rhetoric that states what can be summed up as: Everything has a cause because everything exists and because everything exists it must all be caused by what we call God.
Your professor was a little odd in that he was asking you to reiterate Aquinas work when even in your professors time, the work was considered faulty and a product of medieval thought processes in it's era wherein, to find anything that refuted the literal and figurative "proofs" of the Divines existence in that time would get a person killed.

How would I have answered? Well, if my degree depended on giving an "ataboy" to Aquinas I would have simply said in a simple sentence. Aquinas said it, I believe it and that's it.
With a post script of course. If everything exists and thus everything has a cause and that everything exists then must be caused by God, then what caused God?

Why not write what you would have liked to write in response to what this professor asked of you, way back then? Instead of reiterating Aquinas, why not do just the opposite for your own satisfaction?

If you can still contact that professor/teacher, you might consider it now that he has nothing to hold as control over the atheist he held in such contempt. And as such his own actions showed how at fault he was thinking Christ would approve.

I had an issue with the Principle of the Christian school I was made to attend for two years. (8th grade & the first year of high school). I settled that score many years after gradation, when he had heard of my issue with him and contacted me to "ask forgiveness". A huge mistake because before he commenced exacting corporal punishment, which he delivered in a manner geared to impart physical, emotional and mental abuse, he had his victim stand before their peers in class and ask their forgiveness for the "sin" they'd committed and that was about to get the snot beaten out of them in his private office. Where a prayer was delivered first and forgiveness was again asked of god.
Long story short, I settled that score delivering to him my thoughts on himself and his begging my forgiveness for what he did years before, with a smile and smug sense of self-righteousness. At the time of the abuse he imagined the impact of god's word would never leave his victims. At the end of our phone call I assure you he never forgot how wrong he was.

Don't carry this hate for that one man with you any longer than you have to. It gives his smug sense of superiority power over you, even when he's no longer there. Settle it. Even if you have to do it in effigy, by creating something in his image and likeness, even if it's standing a pillow up on a chair and addressing it as you would like to him. But settle what pisses you off still and put it behind you. Otherwise, you'll be carrying that burden of regret for what was not said, with you all your days. And as such he'll continue to influence your life with his manner and being, when he's not worthy to.

Then, if it is that pillow effigy thing, when you're done throw the pillow in the garbage. A symbolic gesture that basically says, the "pillow" exists but that can be remedied by a simple choice.
Wink
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01-05-2011, 10:17 AM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
After my mark was set in stone and report card done, I'd have messaged the teacher another essay ripping the previous one to bits. I might even consider it years later. What a crappy situation, and unfair. I'd end the report with "Didn't god give us free will? Why do you get to judge me on my choices?" It bugs me that that's something that always gets restricted from non believers- it isn't for anyone else to take or give.
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01-05-2011, 12:07 PM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
(01-05-2011 10:17 AM)LadyJane Wrote:  After my mark was set in stone and report card done, I'd have messaged the teacher another essay ripping the previous one to bits. I might even consider it years later. What a crappy situation, and unfair. I'd end the report with "Didn't god give us free will? Why do you get to judge me on my choices?" It bugs me that that's something that always gets restricted from non believers- it isn't for anyone else to take or give.
Problem with that is: the teacher/priest is then justified in concluding that you admit the existence of his god.
If he is a true believer, he probably sees his job as guiding the young toward heaven, which is what gives him not just a right but a duty to judge and correct them. Most teachers and clerics do feel this way - if they're both, then doubly so.

(On the other hand, i'm personally convinced that 90% of preachers and 70% of their congregations don't believe what they or their holy books say. If the majority did, this would be a quite different world.)

If you pray to anything, you're prey to anything.
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24-05-2011, 07:10 PM
 
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
Honestly it comes down to the fact that the teacher has control over whether or not you pass. You know that you are not living your life according to a myth and that you are not like the Christians who want to thump someone over the head with a bible if they don't believe with what they are saying. It sucks, but its about being the bigger person. Just to irritate them a little and still be able to get full credit I would have put "This individual rationalized the existence of a god like creature by......" Big Grin
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25-05-2011, 07:43 PM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
You should go back to the professor and debunk those laws in his face.

Religion easily has the greatest bullshit story ever told.
-George Carlin
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26-05-2011, 04:02 AM
RE: Exam question: what would you have done?
Thammuz - how long till you graduate ? It must be painful to be called to defend ideas that are intellectually dishonest.

Atheism is a religion like OFF is a TV channel !!!

Proud of my genetic relatives Big Grin
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