On Strategy in the War for Sanity
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04-10-2011, 11:48 PM (This post was last modified: 05-10-2011 12:49 AM by Glaucus.)
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
(04-10-2011 11:12 PM)defacto7 Wrote:  There are no christians who are our allies...

Correct, there is no official alliance between progressive Christians and atheists, but it does ring along with the saying "The enemy of my enemy is my friend." I've never lived in the Bible Belt, far from it, but I was raised in a fairly conservative part of the country (Northern Michigan, not a lot to do there other than go to church and freeze in the winter).

There are Christians who want very similar things to us. Christians like Bishop Spong, who has written books chastising the orthodoxy of Christianity. There was the pastor who told his congregation that Hell wasn't real. He isn't alone. We atheists often forget that very few Christians follow the Bible to the letter. This is why they're repulsed when we bring up the bad ideas in the Bible, because their religion is crafted to fit their view of the world. For example, not all Christians believe in Hell because it doesn't fit with their view that their God is all loving.

Or the theists that invite us to have discussions with them regarding religion? I'm not talking about the ones that simply are looking for someone to debate with, but the ones that are actually curious about what caused us to leave the faith. The ones that actually want a dialogue with atheists, rather than a shouting match with us.

Is it really too much of a stretch to consider these people, people who share our views of church doctrines, as friends or allies? We both have the same end goal in mind, we're just going about it in different ways. They want their religion to evolve with the times and become more open to new ideas. Is that much different from what we want?

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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05-10-2011, 04:24 AM
 
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
(04-10-2011 08:29 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Zatamon.

Quote:Never apologize for treating malice, stupidity and aggressive attacks with self confident, proud rejection.

I don't see anything particularly wrong with this. There's a spectrum of approaches, but this is a legitimate point on that spectrum.

I am happy we agree on this point, because now I can bring the thread back to where it all started:

In Post #12 I also said:

Quote:fatihbarut could have been a harmless fool who poked his nose in where it did not belong. We did not call him terrible names, we only made fun of him, hoping that either he would settle down into a rational debate or go away. He went away. His feelings even may have been hurt and he will, hopefully, learn from it.

On the other hand, he may have been a skillful troll who came here with a program designed to confuse us, set us against each other, disrupt our unity and thus our effectiveness.

Regardless of what his aim was: he achieved what a skillful troll would have wanted to achieve. We apologized, we reprimanded each other we may have caused the loss of some of our members who do not want to be part of a losing battle.

If he was a troll, imagine the gloating he and his buddies are enjoying at this very moment: seeing the spectacle of us bickering about how we may have hurt his feelings?

Believe me, this happens all the time. Not necessarily in this case, but all the time, nevertheless. No wonder the “forces of evil” always win at the end. We may win a battle or two, here or there, but they always win the war because they are united, focused on the goal and they are ruthless. We are divided, confused about our goals and squeamish about the methods we use in our self defense.

As I said earlier:

"Why and how do nice people (some of them atheists, some of them socialists, some of them human-rights advocates, etc.) lose battles?

It is a universal phenomenon: nice people lose because they are nice. They play by the rules, they don't play dirty.

That is why I made that analogy with the steel shield: decide what you want and don't give an inch. Don't attack, just repel and use everything you got to defend yourself. If not for yourself, do it for your children. After all, you owe it to them to protect their future. Even if you have to hit hard and stoop low, you don't do it for revenge, you do it for defending your loved ones."

If we don't stand up for ourselves and each other --- nobody will!

PS. For a very good example just look at recent American history: how the Republican party is wiping the floor with the Democrats, how their spineless, gutless, sniveling appeasement wasted the best opportunity in many decades for advancement in social justice. If the Republicans win the next election in the US, all progressive social forces (including atheists) will become an endangered species, with open season declared on all of us -- and I am not a paranoid -- I am a hard nosed realist with many decades of studying patterns in human history.
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05-10-2011, 06:29 AM
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
Quote:genes operate on three rules, according to Watson: be nasty to outsiders, be nice to insiders and cheat where possible.

Too bad we don't always know inside from outside!
The biggest problem in groups of people is that no two see the same mountain/ molehill or can agree on the same way to climb it/ blow it up. Thus, we rely on leaders to define, evaluate, explain and command. Unfortunately, most atheists are non-followers (by nature, inclination and choice). That makes organizing them improbable, if not impossible. Personally, i don't think it's ever going to happen; nor is there ever going to be a coherent, generally adopted strategy.

If you pray to anything, you're prey to anything.
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05-10-2011, 06:36 AM
 
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
(05-10-2011 06:29 AM)Peterkin Wrote:  
Quote:genes operate on three rules, according to Watson: be nasty to outsiders, be nice to insiders and cheat where possible.

Too bad we don't always know inside from outside!
The biggest problem in groups of people is that no two see the same mountain/ molehill or can agree on the same way to climb it/ blow it up. Thus, we rely on leaders to define, evaluate, explain and command. Unfortunately, most atheists are non-followers (by nature, inclination and choice). That makes organizing them improbable, if not impossible. Personally, i don't think it's ever going to happen; nor is there ever going to be a coherent, generally adopted strategy.

Brilliant: Too bad we don't always know inside from outside!

I agree with you, Peterkin, on the grand scale.

On the small scale, however, this Forum is sort of organized into an orderly discussion, it shouldn't be impossible to achieve some level of consensus.

I am not holding my breath though!

Big Grin

ETA:

One last comment:

The thread is about strategy.

It has 2 different and equally important parts:

1. What to do
2. What NOT to do.

I mostly concentrated on what not to do.

Others mentioned positive things such as Education and I have no problem with that, but the 2 parts have to go hand in hand if the strategy is to be effective.

Wink
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07-10-2011, 07:02 PM
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
(04-10-2011 10:22 AM)Zatamon Wrote:  ... in spite of my better judgement and, against my resolution, I have to remind you all that the intended topic of this thread was STRATEGY in our self DEFENSE and why our current strategy is failing.

My strategy is to dispassionately and alertly watch the collapse of ignorance under its own weight of its own accord. My tactics are to contain the most egregious of the inevitable last ditch desperate death throes like the current attack on teachers and public education in the US. My defense comes from reason and O.F. Mossberg and Sons, Inc.

And I disagree that this strategy is failing. The demise of religion and ignorance is not only inevitable, it is imminent.

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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07-10-2011, 07:23 PM
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
I love the entire post Girly Man but I also disagree. I think that the only thing that is a guarantee is that the religions that have reigned for so long are on their way out, but new ones are sure to take their place. Ignorance is rampant, even in the face of instant knowledge. We are so close to being able to just upload information into our brains ALA the matrix that it isn't just funny anymore, and people still choose ignorance. That's why I think the world will never be entirely done with religion, because there are always people who choose ignorance because it's easier and makes them happy for some unknown reason.
The only hopes I hold onto are the ones like keeping religion and it's beliefs away from words like 'fact' or 'proven' or 'truth' and having them linger around 'opinion' and 'unproven' and 'false'. Keep them out of school and politics. You know the usual, and I think that that much is possible, a long time from now.
As far as religions always being present I just hope the new ones are along the lines of Bahai or something that isn't oppressive or interested in world domination. I don't know a ton about the bahai other than what I've read on wikipedia, but it at least sounds reasonable. Not my cup of tea, but truthfully I prefer coffee anyways.

"I think of myself as an intelligent, sensitive human being with the soul of a clown which always forces me to blow it at the most important moments." -Jim Morrison
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07-10-2011, 08:29 PM
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
Keep religion out of schools and politics??
Usually by the time someone says: "It can't happen here," it already has.

If you pray to anything, you're prey to anything.
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07-10-2011, 09:06 PM (This post was last modified: 07-10-2011 09:14 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: On Strategy in the War for Sanity
(07-10-2011 08:29 PM)Peterkin Wrote:  Keep religion out of schools and politics??
Usually by the time someone says: "It can't happen here," it already has.

That should trigger a reaction.

(07-10-2011 07:23 PM)lucradis Wrote:  The only hopes I hold onto are the ones like keeping religion and it's beliefs away from words like 'fact' or 'proven' or 'truth' and having them linger around 'opinion' and 'unproven' and 'false'.

I am careful not to give words like "fact", "proven", and "truth" holy status. We have already proven that we cannot find god in logic.

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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