Stupid?
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
01-06-2011, 11:15 AM
RE: Stupid?
(30-05-2011 11:48 PM)Dancingstan1 Wrote:  Ask an Atheist TV, in Tacoma WA...

I did attend a Left Behind Party (Countdown To Backpedaling, in Tacoma by the Seattle Atheists)


You live in Tacoma? My brother lives there for the military base. You aren't my brother are you?

That'd be weird.

"Ain't got no last words to say, yellow streak right up my spine. The gun in my mouth was real and the taste blew my mind."

"We see you cry. We turn your head. Then we slap your face. We see you try. We see you fail. Some things never change."
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-06-2011, 02:09 PM
RE: Stupid?
(01-06-2011 08:29 AM)Ghost Wrote:  To me, there are only two reasons to be so vociferous about the stupidity of an idea. 1 - You're saying (universal you) you're smarter than anyone who would host such a stupid idea. There must be something wrong in them that is not wrong in you. 2 - You're smart enough to avoid stupid ideas. It's very self-congratulatory and masturbatory, but it falls short of reality..

Hi Matt,

First, is there a laboratory slide of a meme? It is a concept, albeit a fairly good one, and I might add one I'm not terribly conversant with except in its most general application, but to my limited knowledge not one that has been proven, just a good metaphor.

As to not attacking ideas as stupid, are you not doing just that when you attribute thoughts and motives to someone you've never met? And use a derogatory and dismissive phrase such as "self-congradulatory and masturbatory" when doing so? I don't in any way think that I'm smarter than most believers, but I do think it is necessary to point out ideas and beliefs that are patently delusional. Humor and satire have long been used to that point and that is usually where I'm headed at when I make fun of an idea or a belief (and not usually the person holding that belief).

And yes, many xtians are coming from a place of compassion when warning us of hell, but there are many who certainly delight in the idea that unbelievers will burn for eternity, and those are often the types that fall for the end of the world madness that we see every few years.

I believe that humor, satire and, in the instance of certain very bad ideas, even ridicule, may not change the mindset of someone who holds that belief, it may, as I stated previously, help others to reconsider adopting a patently absurd idea.

Greta Christina has written an article on this in her blog and perhaps as an Alternet piece, and she does a much better job than I do of articulating it.

Be well and happy unless you've made other plans.

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-06-2011, 02:25 PM
RE: Stupid?
Hey, Stan.

Sorry, brother. It wasn't my intention to attack you in any way. I did try to say universal you, as in not you personally, Stan. I hope that's the source of the confusion.

I'm all about satire. But Jon Stewart does satire. Bill O'Reilley does ridicule. Know what I mean?

As for memes, give it time. There are in fact neurologists working on what the physical form of a meme is, but it's difficult to locate specific information in the brain. And it has about the same chance of being proven as the rest of Darwinism.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
02-06-2011, 01:44 AM (This post was last modified: 02-06-2011 01:50 AM by Dancingstan1.)
RE: Stupid?
(01-06-2011 02:25 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Stan.

Sorry, brother. It wasn't my intention to attack you in any way. I did try to say universal you, as in not you personally, Stan. I hope that's the source of the confusion.

Matt

Thanks for the apology, none was really needed, but you might note that I am most likely included in the universal "you", as is everyone else. I do accept and appreciate that you did not mean it as a personal attack on me. Also, it is understandable, human and forgivable to find oneself frustrated when an idea that is perfectly obvious to oneself is not so much so to others, or that they insist on disagreeing.

I agree with most of what you've said, but I will still most likely use mild derision when dealing with delusions in a public forum. On the other hand the greatest number of my friends practice some form of woo or another. I don't attack them, and try to steer away from the discussion their beliefs (I have friends who wholeheartedly believe in homeopathy, reiki, energy healing, chakras and pretty much anything Oprah). I do after all live on the West Coast. If it were to come up I would for the most part try to stay silent or noncommittal, but if pressed I would of course state my true beliefs in as mild a form as possible.

But I recognize that I am a human being and subject to all the frailties of our species. Some days, when I'm healthy, well rested and not overly worried about my next meal I am calm, compassionate and tolerant. Other days not so much. And I also think one reason I make fun of these ideas on occasion is the flat footed acceptance of these beliefs in the media and throughout society, which, if examined, are impossible to support other than to say "I believe them because I want to, faith is above science or reason, and I can't imagine not being able to see my (fill in the blank) in (heaven, the next life, Mt Olympus, or some other equally imaginary place).

This by no means makes these people stupid, nor does my sometimes vocal rejection of these ideas mean that I am smarter (whatever that means) than they are, or think that I am. I agree there are some folks who do think exactly that, I'm just saying that for the only person that I can reasonably speak for or about (myself) that is not where I'm coming from.

In fact it is usually quite the opposite. I find it hard to believe that people who are so basically intelligent in every other area of their lives would fall for pieces of utter nonsense. For example, I know of a number of highly educated professionals who absolutely believe in David Icke's idea that the world is controlled by shape shifting 7 foot tall reptiles. One person I have discussed this with is a very well respected engineer. This person is obviously not stupid, but his ideas are, to put it bluntly, but I have said that here and did not say that to him, I just politely remained noncommittal. And my dog, there are the mormons, who believe in magic underwear.

I think what I'm trying to say is, much as you are saying not to paint the xtians or mormons or hindus or buddhists with too broad a brush and to try to build bridges where possible, I am saying not to judge too harshly those who can't or won't do the same. We are alive for such a short time and are often given such bad information while growing up that it is amazing that even one of us manages to escape the delusions that seek to mold and control us. There's a great e e cumming poem to that end:

Quote:To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best day and night to make you like everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight and never stop fighting.
e e cummings

Stan
(01-06-2011 11:15 AM)Buddy Christ Wrote:  You live in Tacoma? My brother lives there for the military base. You aren't my brother are you?

That'd be weird.

Well unless you've nearing 80 and have been dead for the past 9 or 10 years I expect you're not my brother. And I don't live in Tacoma, I just drove down for the party as I'm a member of Seattle Atheists and it wasn't to long a drive. I'm in Burien, near SeaTac airport at the south end of Seattle.

But it would definitely been weird, I'll grant you that.

Stan

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
02-06-2011, 06:37 AM
RE: Stupid?
Hey, Stan.

You are very gracious.

I personally don't believe in stupidity. It's one of those beliefs that seems self-evidently false to most people, but it’s my story and I’m sticking to it. To me, stupid is as useful a term for choices/beliefs as crazy is for mental illness. It's the kind of derogatory word that takes a number of very complex processes and reduces it all to "the person isn't worth anything." I think that the science behind what we believe, why we believe it and the relationship between belief and choice is incredibly complex and woefully misunderstood. It's just easier to say "that's stupid".

Stan Wrote:I think what I'm trying to say is, much as you are saying not to paint the xtians or mormons or hindus or buddhists with too broad a brush and to try to build bridges where possible, I am saying not to judge too harshly those who can't or won't do the same.

Cheers.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
02-06-2011, 09:27 AM
RE: Stupid?
(02-06-2011 06:37 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Stan.

You are very gracious.

I personally don't believe in stupidity. It's one of those beliefs that seems self-evidently false to most people, but it’s my story and I’m sticking to it. To me, stupid is as useful a term for choices/beliefs as crazy is for mental illness. It's the kind of derogatory word that takes a number of very complex processes and reduces it all to "the person isn't worth anything." I think that the science behind what we believe, why we believe it and the relationship between belief and choice is incredibly complex and woefully misunderstood. It's just easier to say "that's stupid".

Matt

Thanks Matt, that quite gracious of you as well.

As always, well and happy unless you've got other plans,

Stan

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: