Words I want to remember
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06-04-2015, 07:01 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
(06-04-2015 08:42 AM)Free Thought Wrote:  
(06-04-2015 08:11 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  I was a little scared to go into the bathroom after that. I wanted to tell her "We're not in that big of a hurry, hon!".

No

Children are truly frightening creatures.




#sigh
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09-04-2015, 06:36 AM
RE: Words I want to remember
(09-04-2015 05:04 AM)Hobbitgirl Wrote:  Hating god makes you an angry christian, not an atheist.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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09-04-2015, 05:51 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
(09-04-2015 05:47 PM)unfogged Wrote:  Contributors are red,
Members are blue,
One only is orange,
'cause he's Muffs, so fuck you.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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09-04-2015, 05:51 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
Damn you, Chas! *shakes fist* why I oughtta.... Tongue beat me to it by seconds
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10-04-2015, 01:49 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
(10-04-2015 12:22 PM)Reltzik Wrote:  If you're looking to vent, I hear you. Hugs and all that. Hug

If you want not-quite-solicited advice, it's hiding under the button below.

I'd suggest adopting a much more Socratic approach. The key in the Socratic approach is to not overtly take a position yourself, but rather guide him to your own position through a series of questions that draw him into clearly stating positions, and then highlight the foolishness of those positions (where they are foolish) and force him to reconsider them. Do not anticipate his positions. Let him commit himself to the position and clearly state it before you bring questions to bear against it.

So, using your conversation as an example, with a more Socratic method, the conversation might have gone like this:

Him: Atheists have a religion.
You: Wait... what?
Him: Atheists have a religion.
You. How do you figure?
Him: Because you believe in something.
You: What do you think we believe in?
Him: You believe that nothing exists, therefore, you believe in something, which makes it a religion.
You: What is your definition of religion?
Him: If you believe in something, then you have a religion.
You: I believe our cat Lece' has three colors. Some might believe she has four colors. Is either belief a religion?
Him: People have worshiped cats.
You: Isn't there a difference between worshiping cats, and counting the number of colors on their coat?
Him: ...
You: Could I believe or say that water is wet, without worshiping water? Is it a religion to believe that water is wet?

There are various advantages of this approach. First it keeps the focus on the silly things he is saying, and the specific way(s) in which it they are silly. Second, rather than drawing him into defending the position (like saying outright that the position is stupid would), it invites him to examine its specific flaws. Questioning is more inviting than contradicting. Third, it invites him to state, clarify, and modify his position. This will give you more grist for the mill while at the same time putting him in a mode that is more open to considering and reconsidering his position. Fourth, it gives YOU the opportunity to be enlightened, in the event that you are holding the wrong position. (For the record, Buddhism is a religion that doesn't have gods... or at least doesn't care about them.) Fifth, it avoids the accusation of you always needing to be right... for you to be right, you'd have to have adopted a position in the first place. And sixth, it will get him into the habit of questioning these things on his own and answering those questions for himself.

Note also the choice early on, between trying to correct the "atheists believe in nothing" misclaim and provoking him to define religion. Eventually correcting this false claim will be important, but the key issue at the moment is getting a clear and reasonable definition of religion. Any syllogism is divided into a major premise (If condition A then conclusion B, in this case what does or doesn't count as a religion), a minor premise (Condition A is true, in this case the nature of atheism as meeting whatever condition for being a religion), and a conclusion (Conclusion B is therefore true.) The human brain likes to begin with conclusions, and then construct rationalizations for them... not the most rational setup, but evolution just kinda stumbled us haphazardly into sapience and the whole thing's a bit of a kluge. Minor premises are pretty easy to address. It's the major premises that are difficult to establish, defend, or debunk. If you begin by setting straight the minor premise, then the rationalizing brain will have to monkey around with the major premise in order to keep the conclusion. Because of how hard it is to correct major premises, arguing through last ditch rationalizations here will be a huge challenge. It is best to correct the flaws in the major premise first. This leaves the minor premise as the place for a rationalizing brain to monkey around, which is much easier to deal with.

So far I've followed the views expressed in your conversation very closely, but modified the order and manner in which they were expressed. For example, I had this Socratic version of you get right to the point -- asking him to commit to whatever definition of religion he was using that allowed him to label atheism a religion -- and then undermining that point. When he brought up the worship of cats, he was clearly attempting to make his belief-equals-religion model accommodate a bad fit. Socratic-you's follow-up question highlighted how the accommodation was bad, and then given the opportunity Socratic-you asks a question showing another bad fit.

Now I'll depart somewhat from the views expressed in your original conversation, because somewhere around here most people faced with a Socratic approach will start modifying their position... or at least find ways to "say it better", without admitting that they are changing it.

Him: Well it's not just ANY belief. Believing that water is wet isn't a religion
You: So some things people believe to be true aren't religions?
Him: Yeah, but that doesn't mean atheism isn't a religion.
You: But believing water is wet doesn't count as a religion?
Him: Right.
You: What do you think the difference is? What type of belief counts as a religion and what type doesn't? How are you defining religion, if it's a belief but it's not just any belief?

Here Socratic-you is resetting to the challenge for him to state his position clearly. He will now be forced to define religion as more than just belief, and do so in a manner that exempts water being wet but includes atheism. This will give you more absurdities to highlight with questions and make his position more untenable. It will also help (emphasis: HELP! This is for his benefit too) him come to a better understanding of what religion is and isn't.


But as if to knock me down, reality came around
And without so much as a mere touch, cut me into little pieces

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12-04-2015, 05:06 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
(12-04-2015 05:01 PM)TheInquisition Wrote:  It takes a fundamentally deficient train of thought to rationalize a refusal to act as an ultimate expression of love.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
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21-04-2015, 10:45 AM
RE: Words I want to remember
(21-04-2015 10:12 AM)GirlyMan Wrote:  As to who's on clean up duty? Well, that's what life insurance beneficiaries are for now isn't it.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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21-04-2015, 03:04 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
(19-04-2015 06:34 PM)ELK12695 Wrote:  If those fucking badgers start cockfighting one more fucking time in the barn, then I'm gonna join their goddamn battle of wits with a baseball bat and make them shut the fuck up once and for all.

Shit, I love this. Shy And I don't even know what it means.

A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move to higher levels. ~ Albert Einstein
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21-04-2015, 06:36 PM
RE: Words I want to remember
(21-04-2015 03:04 PM)kim Wrote:  
(19-04-2015 06:34 PM)ELK12695 Wrote:  If those fucking badgers start cockfighting one more fucking time in the barn, then I'm gonna join their goddamn battle of wits with a baseball bat and make them shut the fuck up once and for all.

Shit, I love this. Shy And I don't even know what it means.

I dunno either. All I can find is this. Big Grin




#sigh
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25-04-2015, 05:54 AM
RE: Words I want to remember
(24-04-2015 05:20 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  Putting judicial robes on top of your clown costume just makes you even more amusing.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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