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22-05-2011, 11:41 AM
Hey, erbody.

So the predicted Rapture date came and went and predictably, we're all still here.

Gassy posted this article about it and two things jumped out at me.

Quote:After driving from Maryland in the hope of being taken up to heaven in the Rapture with a crowd of fellow believers, Keith Bauer admitted his disappointment Saturday as he stood in a near-empty parking lot outside the locked Family Radio headquarters in Oakland.

"I was hoping," the 36-year-old trucker told reporters, who outnumbered believers at the grimy hub of worldwide speculation that Earth would end that very day at 6 p.m. "Heaven will be a lot better than this earth."

I don't know if I'm reading too much into it, but I sense such pain in this man.

The sort of general sense that I get is that most people look at these people and see sheep, idiots, stupid people, feeble people, crazy people, worthless people. I also get a sense that many people seem to take a kind of perverse joyful delicious pride in the fact that the Rapture didn't happen. Not so much in the I was right sense but in the these crazy people were wrong and I'm loving it sense. I wonder why that is. It just strikes me that their humanity is being overlooked.

Quote:Richardson works at Lawrence Berkeley Lab and isn't a follower. He said he is a "compassionist," and was there to tell people that "if the theological speculation of a fallible man fails, then that does not mean God has failed you.

I don't see evidence of too many people like Richardson.

I don't know. I mean I obviously was not terribly worried about the Rapture occuring yesterday, but, I don't know, I find myself feeling for these people and I feel like people are kicking them when their down. Like their only purpose is to be fodder for our jokes. Are they really that stupid or do they deserve better?


Peace and Love and Empathy,

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22-05-2011, 11:55 AM
RE: Stupid?
What is that German word? Schadenfreude. The funny thing is the people who were celebrating the most at no rapture were other Christians, go figure, as if their the smart ones.
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22-05-2011, 12:08 PM
RE: Stupid?
I actually do sympathize some with end timers (though not so much when they're preaching at me). I've been at a place in my life where the world seemed horrible and bad, and life appeared to be the worst possible punishment. I would actually like for them to get that first part of the rapture. I see it as a win-win situation.

The issue though is that generally all end timers I run into have horrible views of the LGBT community and generally blame it and fuel hatred towards the community by being loud. I can't really sympathize with people who aggressively fight against my right to existence.

That's my personal reason to occasionally mock this group, and by this group I mean the general end time philosophers. I feel that no matter how down they are, no matter how hard life is for them, that the fact that they make life harder for others makes it acceptable to proclaim their idiocy. In St. Louis there were many small incidents of crimes perpetrated by people who had the belief that soon it wouldn't matter. Some people really did let loose and make Friday their last day.

The most important thing to remember is that no matter how much mockery there is towards end timers it is really only targeted towards the leaders. The followers are just people who hope and desire and latch onto anyone who claims it will happen. This has been going on for centuries upon centuries, and currently around %40 of US citizens think the world will end soon. If this philosophy is not mocked and shown as idiotic and made to look less and less credible, that number will probably be a lot higher.

The belief that there is nothing good in the world and the only happiness will be attained through a deistic homicide. The belief that there is no need to avoid resources which pollute or have limitations, and to waste that which isn't renewable because if you don't use it it'll just not be used when the world ends. These things are horribly detrimental to our future survival. Causing a huge portion of suicides and preventing advances towards renewable energy sources that will allow for things like the space age (people living in spaceships and traveling through galaxies).

This group has a huge effect on others lives simply by being so numerous. We need to stop them, and presently when groups as universally despised as Westboro exist due to certain protections the best way to prevent an ideology from spreading is to state again and again how absurd it is. Mocking these groups is currently our best answer to the fact that they represent a real threat to the continuing health and survival of the human race.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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22-05-2011, 12:10 PM (This post was last modified: 22-05-2011 12:14 PM by Tim_Kiebooms.)
RE: Stupid?
I understand your idea, but I personally don't feel like every single person in the world needs my compassion. There are also quite a lot of examples in this forum of people saying things like "poor fools", I think you're not supposed to be more compassionate to people who think and act differently from you and who played their bet on Rapture day. It's not that our mockery will make them go suicidal. If they would, the misery of which they wanted the Rapture to free them from would be the main cause.
They're not necessarily the most stupid people there are, but if you gamble on the wrong number you just have to pay your debt, in this case it's mockery. If one day the theory of the big bang would be disproved theists will mock us as well.

I don't want to sound like a total prick, but I was laughing with them before this Rapture fail occurred because i think what they believe is wrong, should i stop now that they actually were proved wrong about something?
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22-05-2011, 01:17 PM
RE: Stupid?
They sure as hell didn't seem to care about the humanity of others when preaching that they were going to be saved and the others were going to hell.

However, we SHOULD care about people who have been hurt by the Rapture preachers. As Dave Silverman (who some of you might not like because of his blatant way of campaigning atheism) puts it:

Quote:But we all must remember that people have been hurt this weekend. We hope the victims of this year’s end-of-the-world will lift themselves back up, dust themselves off, and come out of this as better, less gullible people. Hopefully, they will use their experience to help others avoid future scams by shouting loudly at tomorrow’s victims, without fear of being irreverent about something which deserves no reverence at all.

It's easy to mock people. But mocking them, if anything, will reinforce their belief that anyone who's not on their side is a minion of Satan or whatever. There's no one I know that believed in the Rapture, but if there was, I'd encourage those people to, for instance, sue Harold Camping's ass for misleading them into giving him money, and to avoid falling into gullibility once again. If they want to believe in their god that's fine, but they should always be wary of people who preach "his" word.

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: Screw Pascal's wager.
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22-05-2011, 01:29 PM
RE: Stupid?
Caveat emptor comes to mind.

Many of these fundies are the same ones that decry government intervention in their lives - such as don't tell me what to eat, what to buy, etc. We (they) are smart enough to know what to do...

The saddest part is what becomes of the children, whose parents made terrible adult decisions to squander their life savings to follow a crappy prophesy...I feel for them, whether they were brainwashed to believe this drivel or not...

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22-05-2011, 02:10 PM
RE: Stupid?
It is difficult for me to feel any real sympathy or pity for these people, although I'm sure there is a percentage of them that are sympathetic people. I always wonder who falls into the trap of falling for these things and figure they have pretty sad lives. But, based on some of the comments I've read from believers the past few months leading up to this, I think a great many of them are just hateful and arrogant. They pass judgment on gays, on Jews, on Muslims, on atheists, on all kinds of people who they have never met and yet wish ensure that their rights and lives are infringed upon. Frankly, I see little difference between people like Camping and the Phelps family.

So, why I understand the point Ghost is making here and I see where he's coming from, I'm just not willing to make the leap to reach across and feel bad for these people. Well, maybe the one guy in NYC who blew his life savings on billboards and advertisements. Him I feel a little bit bad for, I guess. Hopefully he now has a moment of clarity and changes his ways.

I know I was born and I know that I'll die. The in between is mine.
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22-05-2011, 02:17 PM
RE: Stupid?
As I said in another post...

Quote:We as skeptical S of B 'es had our laughs with the gullible. Now, we just have to wait for 21 dec 2012 for the world to end, and we can have a laugh again. (I'm always hesitating on doing that since I think it might one day fly as a boomerang into my face. Not directly for sure... but more as an "unknown-unknown")

Maybe many believers where not so much following their believes but more sort of their wish...
Like an abused child, hoping it can leave along with Santa...


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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22-05-2011, 02:38 PM
RE: Stupid?
I say we should rejoice in the fact that this was wrong, maybe, just maybe one person will look back at the evidence that persuaded them and see how foolish it was to trust it, and maybe even apply that new-found logic to their Christian beliefs and free themselves from the chains. Sure it wouldn't happen immediately, but ten years down the road, I will bet that this rapture scare deconverted at least one individual, and that person is much better off because of it.

We tell the people the truth, they ignore us, they threaten us, they harrass us, and inside their churches they preach that we are worthless. The individuals who listen and believe what those pastors are preaching deserve NO more sympathy or pity than the Pastors themselves.
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23-05-2011, 01:27 PM
RE: Stupid?
I think Ghost has made some excellent points, and there's a YouTube video that points out exactly that, by SisyphusRedeemed.

I also sensed the immense pain the man who was quoted seemed to be feeling. This is the basis for one of my main arguments against religion. If, instead of hoping for the big rock candy mountain in the afterlife, which no one has seen and cannot be proven or examined, we realized that this one life is likely the only life we will ever know, then perhaps we would be more earnest and vigilant in working to ensure that this world becomes a better, happier and healthier place to live for ourselves, our children and indeed all of its inhabitants, human and animal alike.

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx
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