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Moog
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19 May 2011, 9:54 am

Oodain wrote:
Moog wrote:
TheBicyclingGuitarist wrote:
I agree. I read the Bible and see the teachings of the Buddha expressed by Christ. I disagree with rabid atheists who make claims as extreme and unsupported as equally ridiculous claims by fundamentalists of different religions.

Spiritual teachings are by their nature ineffable, and cannot truly be communicated by language alone. Such teachings use metaphor and imagery to hint at, point at, methods by which one can have mystical experiences, but once such teachings are put into words they become subject to misinterpretation, translation errors, and personal contexts and prejudices. That is why I really respect Buddhism for placing no reliance on concepts or dogma, but then, Buddhism goes so far in that direction as to create potential for misunderstanding.


Being of a mystical bent, I believe that only experience can elucidate the meanings of certain teachings/texts/words. You can certainly use words to teach, but they won't really make sense until you taste what they pertain to. Then the words make sense. The words are hints, signposts.

It's no wonder to me that people write religion, spirituality and mysticism off, because from the outside, it does seem a bit wacky. It's like trying to experience drugs by watching someone else on 'shrooms.

People who've not bothered to follow a bone fide, actually effective religious/spiritual/mystical path at least some of the way, have no business commenting on any of it, except to say that they don't really understand it.

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as G.K. Chesterton pointed out, "Coincidences are spiritual puns." LOL


Ahh, interesting quote.


i agree that religion can hold meaning for the individual,

the reason i am outspoken against religion is because of the prize whole of humanity is paying.
i find it extremely self centered when a religion starts spreading teachings that hurt people,


It's not the religion doing that, it's the people.

To say that religion is harmful is like saying that guns kill people. People kill people. Sometimes with guns, sometimes in the name of religion.


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Moog
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19 May 2011, 9:55 am

leejosepho wrote:
Moog wrote:
Being of a mystical bent, I believe that only experience can elucidate the meanings of certain teachings/texts/words. You can certainly use words to teach, but they won't really make sense until you ["taste and see"] what they pertain to. Then the words make sense. The words are hints, signposts.

It's no wonder to me that people write religion, spirituality and mysticism off, because from the outside, it does seem a bit wacky. It's like trying to experience drugs by watching someone else on 'shrooms.

People who've not bothered to follow a bone fide, actually effective religious/spiritual/mystical path at least some of the way, have no business commenting on any of it, except to say that they don't really understand it.

Quote:
as G.K. Chesterton pointed out, "Coincidences are spiritual puns." LOL

Great post, Moog!


Thanks Lee.

Feels a bit like laying my cards on the table :lol:


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Oodain
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19 May 2011, 10:07 am

Moog wrote:

It's not the religion doing that, it's the people.

To say that religion is harmful is like saying that guns kill people. People kill people. Sometimes with guns, sometimes in the name of religion.


yes but supplying the populace with assault rifles and hand grenades and allowing them to be carried in the streets certainly wont help the issue,

as stated many times before i dont have a problem with relgious people that actually practice what they preach, as most of them couldnt care less if i was a believer or not(at least the ones i have met)
i love churches as they are an amazing feat of architecture, i think many of the stories i have read hold a brilliant message.

but all of these beautiful things are over shadowed by the atrocities some religious people seem intent on supporting, becasue of taking scripture too literally.
now i could, as an atheist/agnostic, try to change that, but i probably would have more luck trying to move to mars to escape the stupidity.
however i can helpt put pressure on all religious people, then when that pressure gets high enough hopefully someone religious will start to do something about their brethren.

btw, i just saw the official statement the church gave in relation to its child molesting, society did it, by the group that has one of the largest single influences on western society.


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19 May 2011, 10:15 am

If it were not religion it would be something else. CHECK your history. The Mongols and the Romans were nor spreading a religion. The archduke was not assissinated for religious reasons.

GREEN MONKEY attackers will ALWAYS find something.



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19 May 2011, 10:20 am

Oodain wrote:
Moog wrote:

It's not the religion doing that, it's the people.

To say that religion is harmful is like saying that guns kill people. People kill people. Sometimes with guns, sometimes in the name of religion.


yes but supplying the populace with assault rifles and hand grenades and allowing them to be carried in the streets certainly wont help the issue,

as stated many times before i dont have a problem with relgious people that actually practice what they preach, as most of them couldnt care less if i was a believer or not(at least the ones i have met)
i love churches as they are an amazing feat of architecture, i think many of the stories i have read hold a brilliant message.

but all of these beautiful things are over shadowed by the atrocities some religious people seem intent on supporting, becasue of taking scripture too literally.
now i could, as an atheist/agnostic, try to change that, but i probably would have more luck trying to move to mars to escape the stupidity.
however i can helpt put pressure on all religious people, then when that pressure gets high enough hopefully someone religious will start to do something about their brethren.

btw, i just saw the official statement the church gave in relation to its child molesting, society did it, by the group that has one of the largest single influences on western society.


Religious institutions are powerful. That's why people get involved with them. Through the power of the church, they can hold power, and power isn't religious or secular. Abuse isn't reserved purely for the religious. If children are harmed it doesn't matter if that harm is perpetrated by a Catholic, a Buddhist, or an atheist. If you stripped the world of religion, people would find other excuses to harm, because harming others to get their s**t is pre-religion, it's pre-language.

Secularising the world won't make the problems people associate with religion go away. It's a mistake to compartmentalise things in that way.


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Last edited by Moog on 19 May 2011, 10:22 am, edited 2 times in total.

Oodain
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19 May 2011, 10:21 am

Philologos wrote:
If it were not religion it would be something else. CHECK your history. The Mongols and the Romans were nor spreading a religion. The archduke was not assissinated for religious reasons.

GREEN MONKEY attackers will ALWAYS find something.


im not disagreeing with you,
so stop acting all defensive.

the romans had a very large multi theistic aproach to religion (almost thinking of gods as something that could be conquered)
incorporating large amounts of different cults, from many geographic locations and heritages.
they did however not use it as a tool as some others have, that i agree on.


but just because religion isnt the only outlet for "bad human behavior"
doesnt legitimize it in itself, many things in society today(at least in denmark) has to be changed if we are to be ready for the future.


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19 May 2011, 3:06 pm

CaptainTrips222 wrote:
I kinda agree. Either extreme has never seemed healthy to me. If people can find a sense of oneness with the universe through prayer, or some kind of belief enhances their well being, then go for it, but the more rabid atheists immediately scoff and shoot it down.

"Either extreme"

A Christian extremist is a guy who wants to impose Creationism in schools and displays homophobia everywhere and bombards abortion Clinics.

A Muslim extremist is a guy who uses himself as a bomb.

An atheist extremist apparently is a guy who bashes religion.

Such asymmetry, really. To compare strident atheists to the level of extremism shown by theists is rather unfair.


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19 May 2011, 3:48 pm

Vexcalibur wrote:
CaptainTrips222 wrote:
I kinda agree. Either extreme has never seemed healthy to me. If people can find a sense of oneness with the universe through prayer, or some kind of belief enhances their well being, then go for it, but the more rabid atheists immediately scoff and shoot it down.

"Either extreme"

A Christian extremist is a guy who wants to impose Creationism in schools and displays homophobia everywhere and bombards abortion Clinics.

A Muslim extremist is a guy who uses himself as a bomb.

An atheist extremist apparently is a guy who bashes religion.

Such asymmetry, really. To compare strident atheists to the level of extremism shown by theists is rather unfair.


So, by your definitions, I would not be a Christian extremist since I don't bombard abortion Clinics in particular (just the entire planet), but you'd be an atheist extremist?



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19 May 2011, 3:56 pm

I would be surprised by your lack of understanding skills, then I noticed it is you and just changed your avatar. You are a fundamentalist but not an extremist. And of course you are a fundamentalist, that's a requirement to be a YEC.


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19 May 2011, 4:00 pm

Vexcalibur wrote:
I would be surprised by your lack of understanding skills, then I noticed it is you and just changed your avatar. You are a fundamentalist but not an extremist. And of course you are a fundamentalist, that's a requirement to be a YEC.


Oh, so only the bombarding of abortion Clinics is what is required to call somebody a "Christian Extremist" and not necessarily the other stuff? So would you not be an Atheist Extremist according to your own definitions or would you need to shoot up a church first?



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19 May 2011, 5:44 pm

iamnotaparakeet wrote:
Vexcalibur wrote:
I would be surprised by your lack of understanding skills, then I noticed it is you and just changed your avatar. You are a fundamentalist but not an extremist. And of course you are a fundamentalist, that's a requirement to be a YEC.


Oh, so only the bombarding of abortion Clinics is what is required to call somebody a "Christian Extremist" and not necessarily the other stuff? So would you not be an Atheist Extremist according to your own definitions or would you need to shoot up a church first?

Umm... to cut this entire fun trip short. Vex's point is that the lines are unequal, not that the lines are drawn correctly and that he is really a fundamentalist.

The same point is gotten by this comic:
Image



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19 May 2011, 6:01 pm

Awesomelyglorious wrote:
iamnotaparakeet wrote:
Vexcalibur wrote:
I would be surprised by your lack of understanding skills, then I noticed it is you and just changed your avatar. You are a fundamentalist but not an extremist. And of course you are a fundamentalist, that's a requirement to be a YEC.


Oh, so only the bombarding of abortion Clinics is what is required to call somebody a "Christian Extremist" and not necessarily the other stuff? So would you not be an Atheist Extremist according to your own definitions or would you need to shoot up a church first?

Umm... to cut this entire fun trip short. Vex's point is that the lines are unequal, not that the lines are drawn correctly and that he is really a fundamentalist.

The same point is gotten by this comic:
Image


Perhaps that or a similar source is where Vex had gotten his idea. Whatever though.

Question: if I just destroy the universe in general would that count as bombing abortion clinics in particular?



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20 May 2011, 8:19 am

I have followed this thread since bumping it and it seems we are not getting any closer to answering the question.

BurntOutMom wrote:
There are only two logical reasons for debate; 1) to challenge your own thinking, or 2) to challenge another's thinking.

I agree, and it seems the second objective is the one most atheists are claiming to address. However, it is not the reason for challenging other beliefs that I am questioning here but the stridency some employ in doing so. Mocking ones beliefs or calling them delusional or insane is not likely to cause one to reconsider them.

Then there is the use of terms like “sky fairy” or “magic man” which few (if any) theists would use to identify their God. Isn't the entire point likely to be rejected simply on the grounds that the label in inappropriate? I would think those methods would go further in reinforcing ones own thinking than challenging anothers.


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20 May 2011, 9:12 am

NobelCynic wrote:
I have followed this thread since bumping it and it seems we are not getting any closer to answering the question.
BurntOutMom wrote:
There are only two logical reasons for debate; 1) to challenge your own thinking, or 2) to challenge another's thinking.

I agree, and it seems the second objective is the one most atheists are claiming to address. However, it is not the reason for challenging other beliefs that I am questioning here but the stridency some employ in doing so. Mocking ones beliefs or calling them delusional or insane is not likely to cause one to reconsider them.

Then there is the use of terms like “sky fairy” or “magic man” which few (if any) theists would use to identify their God. Isn't the entire point likely to be rejected simply on the grounds that the label in inappropriate? I would think those methods would go further in reinforcing ones own thinking than challenging anothers.


For those that do such childish posturing, it would be my guess that mocking others makes them feel better.



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20 May 2011, 12:42 pm

NobelCynic wrote:
I have followed this thread since bumping it and it seems we are not getting any closer to answering the question.
BurntOutMom wrote:
There are only two logical reasons for debate; 1) to challenge your own thinking, or 2) to challenge another's thinking.

I agree, and it seems the second objective is the one most atheists are claiming to address. However, it is not the reason for challenging other beliefs that I am questioning here but the stridency some employ in doing so. Mocking ones beliefs or calling them delusional or insane is not likely to cause one to reconsider them.


No, there is another reason. Neither of these are particularly logical - people seldom seek to change their own minds in any debate and it is virtually impossible to change someone else's through debate. That isn't what debates are for. They're for the audience - the people watching. A good debator will explain their argument well and expose the flaws in their opponent's. And be *entertaining* in the process.

Atheists don't debate to "convert" their opponent (and many started out as believers and realised it was all a load of nonsense, so conversion back the other way is unlikely). They do so to point out to those watching the debate all the lies and contradictions that religion presents. For instance, ever heard the comparison of evolution to a freak wind assembling a jumbo jet in a scrapyard? It's just as unlikely that life randomly evolved! Well, yes it is. But that's not evolution. This is used as an argument against evolution by making it seem ridiculous, but it's a strawman argument.

Quote:
Then there is the use of terms like “sky fairy” or “magic man” which few (if any) theists would use to identify their God. Isn't the entire point likely to be rejected simply on the grounds that the label in inappropriate? I would think those methods would go further in reinforcing ones own thinking than challenging anothers.


Labels are just names. Calling God a magic man or sky fairy simply casts God in a different light; it's making the concept of God look silly, and this is only possible because it actually IS silly. Leave aside all the unknowable plans and scripture for a moment and consider the basic shape - he's an imaginary friend. He's invisible, but he's always there, he listens to you all the time and he loves you (despite all the bad things that still seem to happen). Add in prayer and you've got a fairy godmother granting wishes. Miracles and magic are the same thing. Labels work both ways - you can make God sound ridiculous by representing him as the Invisible Pink Unicorn or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, but you can also make the most arrant nonsense sound more palatable by giving it grand names.