Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
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03-12-2015, 02:20 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 01:20 PM)ClydeLee Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 01:04 PM)wallym Wrote:  We can only threaten people to do the right thing if they are afraid of losing something, or not giving them something. Atheism doesn't offer much, and the best threat remains jail. Not a great sales pitch. Religion, however, offers everlasting life and the love of a supernatural being, maybe a sense of purpose, coupled with the threat of eternal damnation.

It's a nice pitch. And as long as it's a nicer religion, and not a blow people up and get virgins religion, I think it's in our best interest to have other people believe it.

I don't have a clue what you think the "right thing to do" is, but Their life, details of it, is often that motivator. It's also potentially a much better and more effective motivator. Again based on uncertainly proven but potential answers to sociological trends.

Most people who believe don't even go day to day thinking about consequences in after-life hell or heaven manners. It's not something at all that is shown to be effective as a motivator. I don't know what makes you think hell is a stronger motivator to do "right" vs jail/death.

Maybe hell isn't. But heaven is. Life is hopeless for a lot of people. If you don't have a carrot that your chasing, it's harder to follow the 'rules'. Jail scares the shit out of me, because I have a lot to lose by going to jail. Death scares me, because I like being alive. The scales work as intended for people in my situation. I don't believe that's the case for a lot of poorer people.

edit: So it doesn't look like I'm just picking on poor folk, you see the same thing with very rich folk. People who are above the threat of jail/death also feel the need to follow the rules as well. But I think they'd be tougher to trick into being devoutly religious.

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03-12-2015, 02:39 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 02:14 PM)wallym Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 01:38 PM)unfogged Wrote:  So you're saying that the best way to deal with somebody who is disenfranchised and angry at an unjust situation is to lie to him to make him more willing to accept his situation? I don't think I could possibly disagree more.

What's interesting, is I probably think a lot of the things you believe in are lies designed to get you to behave in a specific manner as well.

Nice attempt at deflection. Does that mean that you don't disagree with my assessment of your statement?

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03-12-2015, 02:47 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 02:39 PM)unfogged Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 02:14 PM)wallym Wrote:  What's interesting, is I probably think a lot of the things you believe in are lies designed to get you to behave in a specific manner as well.

Nice attempt at deflection. Does that mean that you don't disagree with my assessment of your statement?

Deflecting what? I already said I think manipulating the poor with lies is a great idea. You said you don't like it.

I think the next step in the conversation is why we disagree, which was what my 'deflection' hinted at.

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03-12-2015, 02:58 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 10:37 AM)jennybee Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 10:35 AM)Toney Wrote:  Then show them the truth about "magic". It's just something we don't understand yet. Science has killed of many gods. Just a few left to destroy.

I agree in showing them the truth, but those who don't want to see it will not listen no matter what you do. Religion is a form of brainwashing--showing someone the truth doesn't always work.

I think your right. Forcing someone who finds comfort in a fairytale and has lived all their life surrounded by this fantasy isn't going to chuck it aside very quickly. When an atheist rubs a theist's nose in the pile of shit called religion this doesn't mean they are going to smell it.


On the plus side I don't know how often I've read about a new atheist mention the internet as the reason they started questioning their religion. All the information is at their fingertip. I'd like to think that the information age will do as much as anything to shrink religion down.

It will never totally go away though.

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03-12-2015, 03:05 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 02:20 PM)wallym Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 01:20 PM)ClydeLee Wrote:  I don't have a clue what you think the "right thing to do" is, but Their life, details of it, is often that motivator. It's also potentially a much better and more effective motivator. Again based on uncertainly proven but potential answers to sociological trends.

Most people who believe don't even go day to day thinking about consequences in after-life hell or heaven manners. It's not something at all that is shown to be effective as a motivator. I don't know what makes you think hell is a stronger motivator to do "right" vs jail/death.

Maybe hell isn't. But heaven is. Life is hopeless for a lot of people. If you don't have a carrot that your chasing, it's harder to follow the 'rules'. Jail scares the shit out of me, because I have a lot to lose by going to jail. Death scares me, because I like being alive. The scales work as intended for people in my situation. I don't believe that's the case for a lot of poorer people.

edit: So it doesn't look like I'm just picking on poor folk, you see the same thing with very rich folk. People who are above the threat of jail/death also feel the need to follow the rules as well. But I think they'd be tougher to trick into being devoutly religious.

Do you think this actually works? And based on any formulated type of reasoning? I think it's the type of thing someone says seems like common sense, but it doesn't hold to scrutiny when you examine groups of peoples minds and what drives their actions. There's reasons why these linked groups of struggles are tied together.

I think others may disagree with you because there isn't a reason to believe it would work, because of constant evidence of it not working. People flock into many religious or cultish groups due to traumatic situations when they're forced to deal with grave thoughts highly. Normally, day to day even when in distressful times, you folks don't spend the time thinking of hellish/heavenly consequences for that to actually motivate them.

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03-12-2015, 03:16 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 02:47 PM)wallym Wrote:  Deflecting what? I already said I think manipulating the poor with lies is a great idea. You said you don't like it.

I think the next step in the conversation is why we disagree, which was what my 'deflection' hinted at.

If you actually think that the best way to build a stable society is to base it on lies then I doubt we can engage in any kind of meaningful dialog.

I am not, by the way, saying that it hasn't been attempted and that things of that nature aren't being done today. I am saying that it would be better in the long term to address the problems rather than attempting to cover them up with lies.

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03-12-2015, 03:18 PM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2015 03:26 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 12:46 PM)wallym Wrote:  Here's the shortsighted part of the anti-religion stuff.

We know what a middle class relatively educated white guy atheist looks like. He goes on the internet, and argues about nonsense for a while in a nice harmless way. Because the reality is, we're still slaves to the social contract for the most part. We're locked into the system for the most part.

Where we need religion, is the poor violent kid who correctly recognizes that his situation is garbage, and is justifiably angry at it. We need to feed that kid the lies about God, and humans being special, and being a part of something bigger, and all that nonsense. We HAVE to keep tricking poor people into thinking their lives are good enough that they shouldn't risk it by coming and taking our stuff.

95 % of the US prison population identifies as Christian. Not working too well, is it ?
You have a study that actually demonstrates what you claim works in any meaningful way ?

Edit : I don't care about theists. What are dangerous and idiotic are Fundamentalists ... of any stripe.

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03-12-2015, 03:31 PM
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 03:05 PM)ClydeLee Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 02:20 PM)wallym Wrote:  ...

Do you think this actually works? And based on any formulated type of reasoning? I think it's the type of thing someone says seems like common sense, but it doesn't hold to scrutiny when you examine groups of peoples minds and what drives their actions. There's reasons why these linked groups of struggles are tied together.

I think others may disagree with you because there isn't a reason to believe it would work, because of constant evidence of it not working. People flock into many religious or cultish groups due to traumatic situations when they're forced to deal with grave thoughts highly. Normally, day to day even when in distressful times, you folks don't spend the time thinking of hellish/heavenly consequences for that to actually motivate them.

I think manipulating poor people with religion is a pretty battle tested strategy with a few millennium's worth of successes.

Does it work in poor neighborhoods? The pastors and evangelists certainly get their tithes/donations from people without money to spare.

Or maybe you are just asking if the religion is doing any good? Anecdotally, it seems like when violent poor people try to turn things around, religion is something they are often crediting. Because a big part of coping with a terrible reality is pretending that it isn't that terrible. Religion is a solid way to do that.

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03-12-2015, 03:40 PM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2015 04:07 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
(03-12-2015 03:31 PM)wallym Wrote:  
(03-12-2015 03:05 PM)ClydeLee Wrote:  Do you think this actually works? And based on any formulated type of reasoning? I think it's the type of thing someone says seems like common sense, but it doesn't hold to scrutiny when you examine groups of peoples minds and what drives their actions. There's reasons why these linked groups of struggles are tied together.

I think others may disagree with you because there isn't a reason to believe it would work, because of constant evidence of it not working. People flock into many religious or cultish groups due to traumatic situations when they're forced to deal with grave thoughts highly. Normally, day to day even when in distressful times, you folks don't spend the time thinking of hellish/heavenly consequences for that to actually motivate them.

I think manipulating poor people with religion is a pretty battle tested strategy with a few millennium's worth of successes.

Does it work in poor neighborhoods? The pastors and evangelists certainly get their tithes/donations from people without money to spare.

Or maybe you are just asking if the religion is doing any good? Anecdotally, it seems like when violent poor people try to turn things around, religion is something they are often crediting. Because a big part of coping with a terrible reality is pretending that it isn't that terrible. Religion is a solid way to do that.

The fact that a lot of people pay a few clerics is not evidence that religion does anything. Your "Utilitarian" philosophy is a slippery slope.
Going to church provides a momentary "feel good" (singing raises your blood pressure) ... just like the movies, but with all sorts of additional down-sides.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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03-12-2015, 03:45 PM
Is it time for you to become Anti-theist?
I have the feeling this is one of the ways many religions started. By telling the masses there's more that will come later. The problem remains with the ones who still use it as a tool.

Wouldn't it make more sense to educate people so they have the mental ability to solve problems in the here and now?
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