Author Topic: ITT: Something We Already Knew  (Read 4355 times)

Golden Applesauce

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #15 on: September 25, 2009, 06:41:55 am »
This isn't new.

Quote from: C.H. Spurgeon
The atheist is, morally as well as mentally, a fool, a fool in the heart as well as in the head; a fool in morals as well as in philosophy. With the denial of God as a starting point, we may well conclude that the fool's progress is a rapid, riotous, raving, ruinous one. He who begins at impiety is ready for anything.

No God, being interpreted, means no law, no order, no restraint to lust, no limit to passion. Who but a fool would be of this mind? What a Bedlam, or rather what an Aceldama, would the world become if such lawless principles came to be universal! He who heartily entertains an irreligious spirit, and follows it out to its legitimate issues is a son of Belial, dangerous to the commonwealth, irrational, and despicable.

Corrupt are they. They are rotten. It is idle to compliment them as sincere doubters, and amiable thinkers -- they are putrid. There is too much dainty dealing nowadays with atheism; it is not a harmless error, it is an offensive, putrid sin, and righteous men should look upon it in that light.

One does not find virtue promoted by the example of your Voltaires and Tom Paines. Those who talk so abominably as to deny their Maker will act abominably when it serves their turn. It is the abounding denial and forgetfulness of God among men which is the source of the unrighteousness and crime which we see around us. If all men are not outwardly vicious it is to be accounted for by the power of other and better principles, but left to itself the "No God" spirit so universal in mankind would produce nothing but the most loathsome actions.

That's from C.H. Spurgeon's Treasury of David, in the exposition of Psalm 53:1, written in 1885.

I hate the ignorant. Voltaire was a Deist.

We're some of the monkeys who don't follow the accepted monkey rules, so as Roger comments, we catch a lot of shit.

Deism wasn't that far off from Atheism, from the perspective of those who believed in a God active in the affairs of the world.  To someone like that, believing that God exists but doesn't do anything is just like saying that God functionally doesn't exist.
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #16 on: September 25, 2009, 06:57:10 am »
This isn't new.

Quote from: C.H. Spurgeon
The atheist is, morally as well as mentally, a fool, a fool in the heart as well as in the head; a fool in morals as well as in philosophy. With the denial of God as a starting point, we may well conclude that the fool's progress is a rapid, riotous, raving, ruinous one. He who begins at impiety is ready for anything.

No God, being interpreted, means no law, no order, no restraint to lust, no limit to passion. Who but a fool would be of this mind? What a Bedlam, or rather what an Aceldama, would the world become if such lawless principles came to be universal! He who heartily entertains an irreligious spirit, and follows it out to its legitimate issues is a son of Belial, dangerous to the commonwealth, irrational, and despicable.

Corrupt are they. They are rotten. It is idle to compliment them as sincere doubters, and amiable thinkers -- they are putrid. There is too much dainty dealing nowadays with atheism; it is not a harmless error, it is an offensive, putrid sin, and righteous men should look upon it in that light.

One does not find virtue promoted by the example of your Voltaires and Tom Paines. Those who talk so abominably as to deny their Maker will act abominably when it serves their turn. It is the abounding denial and forgetfulness of God among men which is the source of the unrighteousness and crime which we see around us. If all men are not outwardly vicious it is to be accounted for by the power of other and better principles, but left to itself the "No God" spirit so universal in mankind would produce nothing but the most loathsome actions.

That's from C.H. Spurgeon's Treasury of David, in the exposition of Psalm 53:1, written in 1885.

I hate the ignorant. Voltaire was a Deist.

We're some of the monkeys who don't follow the accepted monkey rules, so as Roger comments, we catch a lot of shit.

Deism wasn't that far off from Atheism, from the perspective of those who believed in a God active in the affairs of the world.  To someone like that, believing that God exists but doesn't do anything is just like saying that God functionally doesn't exist.
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Iason Ouabache

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #17 on: September 25, 2009, 07:26:20 am »
If there's something wrong with Atheism, it's that it ends in -ism.
I don't like the fact that the word "atheism" is a negative term. By using it you are defining yourself by something you don't believe in, something you are not. I prefer the terms Skeptic, Rationalist, "proud member of the reality-based community", Bright. At least then people know what you are rather than what you are not.

Don't say Rationalist, because then you implicitly make the assertion that people who do believe in one or more dieties are irrational - not really true.  Also, Descartes was a Rationalist, and he came up with the "God is too perfect to not exist." argument.

And Skeptic doesn't actually say whether you believe in God.  A skeptic might hold that current evidence supports some notion of the Divine.  Skepticism implies that you hold your beliefs as tentative, subject to change in light of new evidence.  An awful lot of [twelve-year-old internet] atheists don't seem to fit that category...

I'd say "materialist" by the definition of "nothing outside the material world" but a number of people use "materialist" to mean either "reductionist" or a person who lives for material goods - a person who disbelieves in divinities is not necessarily one of those.

I'd suggest finding something you do believe in and calling your self a whatever-that-thing-ist.  Or if you don't believe in anything, nihilist.
How about Discordian? Does that work?
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #18 on: September 25, 2009, 07:54:33 am »
And Discordianism!

:argh!: Ruined my life, the fuckers.
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Iason Ouabache

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #19 on: September 25, 2009, 08:51:52 pm »
Now that I have slept I'd like to expand on this:
If there's something wrong with Atheism, it's that it ends in -ism.
I don't like the fact that the word "atheism" is a negative term. By using it you are defining yourself by something you don't believe in, something you are not. I prefer the terms Skeptic, Rationalist, "proud member of the reality-based community", Bright. At least then people know what you are rather than what you are not.

Don't say Rationalist, because then you implicitly make the assertion that people who do believe in one or more dieties are irrational - not really true.  Also, Descartes was a Rationalist, and he came up with the "God is too perfect to not exist." argument.
I don't have any problems calling someone who believe in something without credible evidence irrational.

Quote
And Skeptic doesn't actually say whether you believe in God.  A skeptic might hold that current evidence supports some notion of the Divine.  Skepticism implies that you hold your beliefs as tentative, subject to change in light of new evidence.  An awful lot of [twelve-year-old internet] atheists don't seem to fit that category...
I'm not saying that all Skeptics are atheists (most are with a few scattered deists, agnostics, and sentimental theists) or that all atheists are Skeptics (many dont' know about the Skeptical movement). I was saying that I consider myself a Skeptic. Don't make me draw up a Venn diagram to explain this.  :argh!:

Quote
I'd say "materialist" by the definition of "nothing outside the material world" but a number of people use "materialist" to mean either "reductionist" or a person who lives for material goods - a person who disbelieves in divinities is not necessarily one of those.
I like the term materialists too but the double meaning makes it difficult to use. Plus Creationists love to use it as an insult.

Quote
I'd suggest finding something you do believe in and calling your self a whatever-that-thing-ist.  Or if you don't believe in anything, nihilist.
Discordian it is then!  :fnord:
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Golden Applesauce

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #20 on: September 28, 2009, 06:54:14 pm »
Now that I have slept I'd like to expand on this:
If there's something wrong with Atheism, it's that it ends in -ism.
I don't like the fact that the word "atheism" is a negative term. By using it you are defining yourself by something you don't believe in, something you are not. I prefer the terms Skeptic, Rationalist, "proud member of the reality-based community", Bright. At least then people know what you are rather than what you are not.

Don't say Rationalist, because then you implicitly make the assertion that people who do believe in one or more dieties are irrational - not really true.  Also, Descartes was a Rationalist, and he came up with the "God is too perfect to not exist." argument.
I don't have any problems calling someone who believe in something without credible evidence irrational.

1.  How do you know they don't have credible evidence?  If God existed, he could be playing favorites, only revealing himself to a chosen few and leaving you in the dark.  Because you see no evidence doesn't necessarily imply that there is no evidence.

2.  Do you believe that if line A crosses lines B and C at the same angle, then lines B and C will never intersect?  What's your evidence (either way?)  Please don't tell me that you're agnostic with regards to geometry.

« Last Edit: September 28, 2009, 08:26:54 pm by GA »
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #21 on: September 28, 2009, 08:39:40 pm »
What I meant to get at with point #2 was that any logical system requires axioms to work.  (Euclid's 5th was a bad example.)  I fail to see how the selection of axioms can be considered as rational or irrational.  If we start with the idea that a logical system must be useful, then it would be irrational to choose axioms that lead to nonsensical or trivial systems - but that presupposes a rule that states that such systems should be useful.  From that sense, I don't see why someone choosing to believe axiomatically that some form of the divine exists is any more irrational than a person choosing to axiomatically accept the existence of a world external to themselves.  Not that either is rational, but that irrationality, at some level, is unavoidable.
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #22 on: September 28, 2009, 08:48:52 pm »
Only if you consider all Game Rules (axioms) to be equally valid.

I suppose that there is an initial "goal" when greating a system of Game Rules: "What is the intent of the game?"

If you want to create an artificial system to see how elequently you can construct a set of Rules, it doesn't really matter what the Game Rules are, as long as they are internally consistent.  "Humans Make Rational Decisions Given Enough Information" is one of these rules in many Economic Games.  And it works very well, provided those Games are not applied to actual human interactions.

But if your "goal" is to see how beneficial a system is in the Chaos of existence, then some axiom become more useful, or valid, than others.

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #23 on: September 29, 2009, 12:56:24 am »
Only if you consider all Game Rules (axioms) to be equally valid.

I suppose that there is an initial "goal" when greating a system of Game Rules: "What is the intent of the game?"

If you want to create an artificial system to see how elequently you can construct a set of Rules, it doesn't really matter what the Game Rules are, as long as they are internally consistent.  "Humans Make Rational Decisions Given Enough Information" is one of these rules in many Economic Games.  And it works very well, provided those Games are not applied to actual human interactions.

But if your "goal" is to see how beneficial a system is in the Chaos of existence, then some axiom become more useful, or valid, than others.


I agree.  The tricky part is deciding what the goal of the game is - from the goal, you can figure out just about anything you need.  But deciding what it means to win, and if winning is even desirable, is very tricky.
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #24 on: September 29, 2009, 01:53:22 am »
Ah, this again.

Atheism isn't any worse or any better than any other belief system. It turns out just as many pedantic unfunny assholes as the rest.
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #25 on: September 29, 2009, 02:28:38 am »
Ah, this again.

Atheism isn't any worse or any better than any other belief system. It turns out just as many pedantic unfunny assholes as the rest.

THIS.

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #26 on: September 29, 2009, 01:10:25 pm »
Yeah, that.

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #27 on: September 29, 2009, 06:24:41 pm »
Ah, this again.

Atheism isn't any worse or any better than any other belief system. It turns out just as many pedantic unfunny assholes as the rest.

the problem is that the atheists that aren't pedantic, unfunny, assholes are not likely to be going around telling every one about what they don't believe,

making it a unfortunate truth that if you know somebody is a atheist the chances of them being a unfunny pedantic asshole are very high
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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #28 on: September 29, 2009, 07:20:03 pm »
Ah, this again.

Atheism isn't any worse or any better than any other belief system. It turns out just as many pedantic unfunny assholes as the rest.

the problem is that the atheists that aren't pedantic, unfunny, assholes are not likely to be going around telling every one about what they don't believe,

making it a unfortunate truth that if you know somebody is a atheist the chances of them being a unfunny pedantic asshole are very high

Hypothesis:
1.  Given two people, the one more associated with atheism will probably be the greater asshole.
2.  Significant exceptions apply.
3.  Those who aren't an exception will likely try to hide behind their charisma, especially posthumously.

I have the impression that religionists make the same mistake as perpetual-motion seekers: starting with something they don't really grasp, and expecting it to have exactly the features they need for their ideas to work.

Example:  Assuming "God habitually punishes."  The Bible supports "God occasionally punishes"  and "God will punish," but "God habitually [or regularly] punishes" just doesn't follow.
Example 2:  Replace "punish" with "aid."

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Re: ITT: Something We Already Knew
« Reply #29 on: September 30, 2009, 10:42:26 am »
Probably.  Starting with an assumed given, which is not backed by evidence, means you are going to have to contort and use some pretty big leaps in logic to get support that position.

Starting with the answer already assumed is rarely a good idea.