My Brother the Islamist
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16-09-2012, 06:59 AM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
(16-09-2012 06:43 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(16-09-2012 06:10 AM)Chas Wrote:  Yes.

Both of those outcomes would occur; the group dynamics would vary across groups.

Then maybe that's what atheist activists should be campaigning for?

Result:
Less membership
(Attempted) Control over extremists

Recalling another thread started by Ghost regarding the "extreme-meme" (or something like that) would the reduction in moderate membership mean that it would be more likely that the extremists take over?

I'm of the opinion that moderate strains of religions do enable fundamentalist strains of those religions.

If there were a religion that did not have the grotesqueries that are in the Bible and Koran that are the poison in fundamentalist strains, then that religion would be moderate even in its fundamental version.

If there are no commands to kill infidels, subjugate others, chop off body parts, sacrifice animals/children/self, etc. then the fundamentals of the religion might be tolerable.

As it is, dreadful beliefs lead to dreadful acts.

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16-09-2012, 09:07 AM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
Hey, Vipa.

I agree in principle about how some converts embrace fundamentalism. That being said, I have a very close friend who was raised Christian, essentially became an apostate, then converted to Sufism and is not a fundamentalist. Some people convert because they see positive things they wish to embrace and wind up moderates.

I think the Muslims in the video are a special case because they didn't just convert to Islam, they joined the cult of a specific extremist.

Hey, Logisch.

Word... by and large Cool

Hey, DLJ.

Quote:If it was law that each club, society, sect, religion, etc. was made responsible (actually "accountable" is a better word) for the actions of all their members i.e. the moderates were punished (or at least tarnished) for the crimes of the extremists as would be the case for e.g. this forum if one member broke the rules by uploading porn...

Would the moderates establish self-policing processes / governance and /or would the casual members start to leave?

If an extremist breaks a law, that's a crime and they are to be arrested and prosecuted. That's already in place; policing of what people do.

If moderates police extremists for what they believe, that's thought police.

If you threaten moderates with punishment for the extremists actions, they have to police them prophylacticly, which means thought policing.

If moderates police extremists for what they've done, that's vigilantism.

If moderates left because of the actions of extremists, there would be no Americans left.

Quote:Recalling another thread started by Ghost regarding the "extreme-meme" (or something like that) would the reduction in moderate membership mean that it would be more likely that the extremists take over?

You misremember Cool

Extremists host extreme VERSIONS of the memes that everyone else in the culture holds. The trick is not reducing the number of moderates, the trick is fostering a migration from the extreme back to the middle.

If, hypothetically, the extreme grows and the moderate vacates, then yes, the extremists become more and more the norm. That's just a ratio question.

Hey, Chas.

Quote:I'm of the opinion that moderate strains of religions do enable fundamentalist strains of those religions.

I think you may know why I disagree with this Cool

As for my reasoning, every culture has an extreme; without exception. That's not a problem of cultures, it's a feature. It is utterly impossible to eliminate the extreme of any culture because the demarcation line that separates extremists from moderates is not fixed but mobile. Extremism is a naturally occurring phenomenon. The issue is not that it exists, the issue is what is the percentage of the culture that is radicalised and what is the percentage that is moderate?

Furthermore, manipulating that ratio is not simply an internal matter. No culture lives in a bubble. All cultures exist in context and the cultures around them have a very serious influence on them; and vice versa. Manipulating the ratio involves the culture in question, the cultures that interact with it and the material infrastructure as well. Effective interventions in human systems involve the use of systems theory.

Quote:If there were a religion that did not have the grotesqueries that are in the Bible and Koran that are the poison in fundamentalist strains, then that religion would be moderate even in its fundamental version.

I agree and disagree. Extremists use fear, hate and absolute truth to manipulate their membership. If there are cultural traits that they can manipulate that are already in place then it makes their job easier. That being said, if those traits do not exist, then they will be imported because the extremist cannot function without them. But that's jut one aspect of it. If there are surrounding cultures applying pressure, if there is poverty, deprivation, political unrest, oppression, scarcity, all manner of elements, these too are manipulated by extremists.

(ON EDIT: Just to be clear, the part I agree with is that there is absolutely room for reform in religions, Islam included.)

One of the things in the documentary that I thought was significant was why these extremists had embraced fundamentalist Islam.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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16-09-2012, 09:48 AM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
(16-09-2012 09:07 AM)Ghost Wrote:  
Quote:If there were a religion that did not have the grotesqueries that are in the Bible and Koran that are the poison in fundamentalist strains, then that religion would be moderate even in its fundamental version.

I agree and disagree. Extremists use fear, hate and absolute truth to manipulate their membership. If there are cultural traits that they can manipulate that are already in place then it makes their job easier. That being said, if those traits do not exist, then they will be imported because the extremist cannot function without them. But that's jut one aspect of it. If there are surrounding cultures applying pressure, if there is poverty, deprivation, political unrest, oppression, scarcity, all manner of elements, these too are manipulated by extremists.

(ON EDIT: Just to be clear, the part I agree with is that there is absolutely room for reform in religions, Islam included.)

One of the things in the documentary that I thought was significant was why these extremists had embraced fundamentalist Islam.

The fundamentalists focus on what they interpret as the fundamentals of their religion. Tautology? Probably. My point is that it is the nature of those very fundamentals that are fuel for the fires that rage. Remove the ugly fundamentals and you remove fuel. This is far more than "room for reform"; it is a requirement for reform or dismantling. The holy texts are compendia of disgusting ideas and tenets. Without them, without the God/Allah/Jehovah mandate of these horrible ideas, the hatred has much less to anchor it, and nothing holy.

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16-09-2012, 10:06 AM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
(16-09-2012 09:48 AM)Chas Wrote:  
(16-09-2012 09:07 AM)Ghost Wrote:  I agree and disagree. Extremists use fear, hate and absolute truth to manipulate their membership. If there are cultural traits that they can manipulate that are already in place then it makes their job easier. That being said, if those traits do not exist, then they will be imported because the extremist cannot function without them. But that's jut one aspect of it. If there are surrounding cultures applying pressure, if there is poverty, deprivation, political unrest, oppression, scarcity, all manner of elements, these too are manipulated by extremists.

(ON EDIT: Just to be clear, the part I agree with is that there is absolutely room for reform in religions, Islam included.)

One of the things in the documentary that I thought was significant was why these extremists had embraced fundamentalist Islam.

The fundamentalists focus on what they interpret as the fundamentals of their religion. Tautology? Probably. My point is that it is the nature of those very fundamentals that are fuel for the fires that rage. Remove the ugly fundamentals and you remove fuel. This is far more than "room for reform"; it is a requirement for reform or dismantling. The holy texts are compendia of disgusting ideas and tenets. Without them, without the God/Allah/Jehovah mandate of these horrible ideas, the hatred has much less to anchor it, and nothing holy.

The "fundamentals" are all based on historical "goofs", and inaccurate misunderstandings. Yahwism, (a War god cult), is debunked , Islam, a moon god cult, is debunked. Christianity, (really Paulianity) is debunked. They serve no good purposes. The fallacy that only religious people do good things is just that. The causal relationship between the doing good things, and religion has not been established. The correlation of SOME good people doing SOME good things, is not causation. Causation has not been established.

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16-09-2012, 10:10 AM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
Hey, Chas.

We're actually agreeing here.

I already said that I agreed that those "grotesqueries" you spoke of are manipulated by fundamentalists and that if they are pre-existing, it makes their job easier. I also agree that there is room for reform, ie, it would not be entirely disagreeable to me if these "grotesqueries" were removed.

Where we disagreed is where I said that if those "grotesqueries" are not pre-existing, it doesn't matter. They will be imported. Furthermore, environmental factors will be manipulated as well. On top of that, there will always be an extreme and they will always be manipulating these things and seeking recruits. The trick is not to eliminate the extremists, because that is impossible, it's minimising their ability to manipulate these things. And yes, removing those "grotesqueries" or reform as I call it, is part of that minimisation.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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16-09-2012, 01:23 PM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
(16-09-2012 10:06 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(16-09-2012 09:48 AM)Chas Wrote:  The fundamentalists focus on what they interpret as the fundamentals of their religion. Tautology? Probably. My point is that it is the nature of those very fundamentals that are fuel for the fires that rage. Remove the ugly fundamentals and you remove fuel. This is far more than "room for reform"; it is a requirement for reform or dismantling. The holy texts are compendia of disgusting ideas and tenets. Without them, without the God/Allah/Jehovah mandate of these horrible ideas, the hatred has much less to anchor it, and nothing holy.

The "fundamentals" are all based on historical "goofs", and inaccurate misunderstandings. Yahwism, (a War god cult), is debunked , Islam, a moon god cult, is debunked. Christianity, (really Paulianity) is debunked. They serve no good purposes. The fallacy that only religious people do good things is just that. The causal relationship between the doing good things, and religion has not been established. The correlation of SOME good people doing SOME good things, is not causation. Causation has not been established.

I'm just talking about what is actually written down is those awful books. What is written is what is used as justification for dreadful acts.

You know it is almost useless to try to educate a fundamentalist by pointing out that the fundamental book is fundamentally flawed.

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16-09-2012, 01:25 PM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
Matt,

I think you are far too dismissive of the texts that the fundamentalists use to justify their actions. Those texts inspire the beliefs as well as justify them.

The books are poisonous.

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16-09-2012, 01:27 PM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
(16-09-2012 03:25 AM)Logisch Wrote:  I had an interesting talk with my Muslim friend the other day. He's a really nice guy and probably one of the more open minded religious folk I've come to know. Him and I were talking about the attack on the embassy due to all the anger that sparked up. He talked about how many of these countries where fundamentalism exists, people are raised to feel hateful, angry, bitter, etc. He said many of them are in places with shitty medical care, all they know is poverty and disease.

While I mentioned that it's a poor excuse for poor behavior, at the same time, areas in the USA where poverty and disease and communities where people are treated badly the crime rate is VERY high. Toss on some fundamentalism and reason to feel like you've got a purpose, hand a guy a gun and tell him to do something, and he'll likely not bat an eyelash at you for it.

I have mixed feelings about it. At one point, I thought all muslims were these evil, angry, "toss them in a stereotype" people who wanted non-believers to just all die. I've found that's not the case at all. It's fundamental extremists that freak me the fuck out. Rightfully so with any belief, religion, political or any kind of extreme doctrine of any sort. When people believe something to the point that they will take the lives of others, or their own, it becomes something worth looking into. People say they will defend their "Freedoms" with their lives, yet every single country, and many different places all see their "freedoms" as something different, even if it means forcing it upon others.

So do I think that Muslims are bad? No, not bad any means. Do I think that FUNDAMENTALISM is crazy and scary as fuck? Uhhhhh yeah. So does my muslim friend. You could call him a pacifist in many ways. He says anyone who acts out in violence disgraces the name of Islam and Allah, and that anyone who would not act in peace is not a real muslim, or a good muslim.

Then again, we see the extremes of this type and the finger pointing in ALL RELIGIONS. Christianity: "Well anyone who would act that way isn't a real christian." and in the same case here. Finger pointing is easy to do when you feel like you're the one preaching it right, and you think others are a bad example. The problem is, little is done about the extreme examples, and people let the fear take over because of course no one wants to die, no one wants to be manipulated and no one wants to have things blown up or shot at. This is why it's so damn scary.

This simply shows that any human being of any kind can be convinced of such things. No one is immune. Psychology, pseudo effect, community, manipulation, the granting of feeling like you have power over something. These are things that can cater to anyone.

I bet you, he shook your hand with his poop hand.

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16-09-2012, 02:51 PM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
Hey, Chas.

OK, now I have no idea what the hell you're talking about. I'm not dismissing anything, let alone being "too" dismissive. This is the oddest agreement conversation I've ever had.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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16-09-2012, 02:53 PM
RE: My Brother the Islamist
(16-09-2012 02:51 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Chas.

OK, now I have no idea what the hell you're talking about. I'm not dismissing anything, let alone being "too" dismissive. This is the oddest agreement conversation I've ever had.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt

It seems to me as if you are dismissing the key problem as well. The fundamental tenets of abrahamic religion.

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