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Author Topic: Calling Christians "Delusional"
Everard
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" don't know. I'll let you know after I see an actual refutation of it."

Go look in the archives. There's a thread that actually has a title thats pretty close to what you're looking for.

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The Drake
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quote:
Originally posted by aupton15:
Practically speaking this isn't true. Delusional thinking is actually a very important component in determining if a person has a mental disorder, and which one they have. Empirically proving that their paranoia or beliefs about the existance of flying elephants is unfounded may be impossible, but that doesn't mean that they aren't delusional, in a clinical sense. I don't think that people who believe in a creator belong in this category, but I don't think your rationale for why is appropriate. I'll try to add to this later...must go now.

I can appreciate that argument. But, we know for a fact that flying elephants don't exist, or can't exist. I doubt any psychiatrist would call somebody's belief in religion a delusion. Now, that may just be because of societal pressure, but still.

Delusionals also don't normally hallucinate in large groups, sharing the same delusion. Nor are delusions typically benign entities. If someone claimed that Jesus was trying to kill them with a lawnmower, that would be a delusion...

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Dagonee
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quote:
Go look in the archives. There's a thread that actually has a title thats pretty close to what you're looking for.
Let me be clear - I don't buy that as a refutation, specifically when one distinguishes the strong atheist statement from the weak atheist statement.
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kenmeer livermaile
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"Plus, I’ve saved a few whales, made a little trubble for the Buscheneys of
the world, and recycled a **** pot of beer cans."

Sly you are, LadyKiller. Attempts to define God move into the realm of irrationality quite soon.

I think one problem with the word irrationality is its negative cachet in today's allegedly highly rational world. Well, to b sure, the digitalkly encoded signals that transmit these words I'm writing to you are frightfully tational. They are precisely measured and trans;atyed according to complexly detailed compilations of logic. But these words... doe, a deer, a female deer, ray, a drop of golden sun... is there really such a thing as a "drop" of golden sun?

Irrationality doesn't mean 'bad leap' or 'poorly thought'or 'googy mumbo jumbo'... it just means that it involves things around which we can't get a precisely defined, consensually verified set of measuring calipers, be those calipers outrightly physical or be they composed of metaphysical material (language, specially math).

Bertrand Russel's logical positivism tried very hard to push the boundaries of metaphysical rationality while also striving to tighten the accuracy of language.

What is God? My personal definition is a container for the ineluctable, ineffable, root(s) of the Riddle of Reality.

You can use it hold hold hope, to deflect despair, to magnify love (or hate), save whales, proclaim dominion over the earth and all the beasts upon it...

"How is it delusional or irrational to come to the conclusion that that something for which there is no proof doesn't exist?"

Because one simply doesn't know. Now, if one simply BELIEVES it doersn't exist, that's one thing. But if one concludes that (Rummy alert) that an absence of evidence is evidence of absence, one intrudes upon the irrational.

As for the delusioonal, it's not possible to be delusional about Imaginary Friends, KE. If one can imagine an Imaginary Friend, one very much indeed has a real Imaginary Friend. But to unImagine and unImaginary Friend outlines the path to a form of madness that was effectively defined and brilliantly refuted in "A Miracle on 34th Street" long long ago in 1947 (when Natalie Wood was a precocious young Lolita, Maureen O'Hara was more beautiful and regal than anyone envisioned Mary Queen of Scots could ever be in any romanticised history book, John Payne convincingly demonstrated why a good wool tailored suit and matching hat combined virility and dignity in a manner that perfectly expressed the mid 20th century's belief that man, especially male man, was Lord of the Earth (althpough the image linked here is more atavistic in nature, and Edmund Gwenn Edmund Gwenn, well, just plain rocked (and himself wore tailored clothes of mandarin nobility.

If one remembers, Edmund Gwenn as Santa Claus in this movie was acquitted of charges of being delusional -- in this case, believing he was Santa Claus -- by the delivery of thousands of letters from boys and girls to his PO BOX at Macy's, NYC, where he worked at the time as Kris Kringle indeedy.

Likewise, the existence of God as humanity's very bestest Invisible Friend of all time can be 'proved' by many similar methods employing the Ten Million Elvis Fans Can't Be Wrong principle.

In the realm of irrationality, this proof is pretty compelling. God wins. Agnostics & atheists lose.

But in the realm of rationality, there is no contest. There is no evidence to weigh. There is only wonder, poetry, hope, fear, madness, enlightenment...

Either way, Ed Gwenn was the best cinematic Santa EVER, and John Payne's beefcake charisma went unmatched until Sean Penn returned the human animal to the animal magnetism that such displays seek to convey. Before Robert Mitchum came along, he had to ask permission from John Payne, who humbly continued the image of masculine power originally established by Gary Cooper, Douglas Fairbanks, Clark Gable & Erroll Flynn (although Erroll, like Bill Clinton, never could get that brooding thing down, that glowering glow that irresistibly sulked for attention). Eroll, like Willie, was usually, and obviously, having too much fun to achieve Immortal Male status as a magnetic animal. But Erroll became an Immortal Male by combining his excessively good looks with an unchecked intellect and sense of freedom. It is a meaningful coincidence that Johnny Depp's already well known star achieved the glow of immortality after Pirates of the Caribbean. He was fulfilling (one of) his cinematically spiritual fathers' footsteps, and become a pirate.

I predict his next major coup is to fully absorb l'essence du noir and redefine Bogart's fedora in an exhaustively baroque manner. If ever there was a lead male actor who might attempt a recreation of Sam Spade in "The Maltese Falcon", it would be Johnny.

If only Dustin Hoffman were fat enough to play Sam Gutman -- The Fatman -- but I suspect they'll have to ask John Goodman to see if he can wash off that Nice Guy burnish and portray a hypercerebral slug of evil.

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Lady Starkiller
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I have no problem being seen as irrational. I personally think it's better to be "irrational" than to be so caught up in "logic" that I can't see straight. Not everything in the universe boils down to logic...

Prove to me that the past exists. In fact, prove to me that time exists.

quote:
But if one concludes that (Rummy alert) that an absence of evidence is evidence of absence, one intrudes upon the irrational.
True, very true.
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kenmeer livermaile
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"If someone claimed that Jesus was trying to kill them with a lawnmower, that would be a delusion..."

Why so? It falls under the same rubric as belief in God. It remains agnostical.

Now, if someone says Jesus is standing right infront of us with a deadly lawn-mower, and says he can see it clearly when we can't, THEN we can say the other person is delusional.

In short, unverifiable claims of manifestation: 'God built this outhouse for me! With His bare hands!' are delusional, but belief that a Being exists that can, if it so chooses, create such manifestions, is merely irrational.

"But, we know for a fact that flying elephants don't exist, or can't exist"

We don't know for a fact. We know they've never been sighted, and we know that physics precludes the possibility of heavier-than-air flying elephants, but somewhere on some mysterioyus Pacific island there may be elephants with enormous balloon appendages that let them float from island to island, enjoying fresh tree leaves then flying on before the island becomes arnboreally denuded...

I submit that the greatest danger to that reason we call rational and scientific is not the belief by so many in Invisible Friends, but the lack of rigor displayed by so many (myself included) in claiming that which is Known or Impossible or Proven...

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Lady Starkiller
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quote:
I submit that the greatest danger to that reason we call rational and scientific is not the belief by so many in Invisible Friends, but the lack of rigor displayed by so many (myself included) in claiming that which is Known or Impossible or Proven...
THANK YOU.
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KnightEnder
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You people all seem to be equating delusion with a psycotic mental disorder. But people delude themselves all the time without being mentally inbalanced.

KE

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kenmeer livermaile
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You're welcome, ma'am. Frankly, your name makes me nervous. Sounds like some sorta stellar bounty hunter.

"Not everything in the universe boils down to logic..."

That we know. Not everything in the universe is known, period, be it known logically or illogically, rationally or irrationally. I'm a believer in Haldane's Premise:

The universe is not only queerer than we imagine, it is queerer than we CAN imagine."

How's that for fighting irrationality with irrationality?

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KnightEnder
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Jav, once again, as so many people before you have done on so many occassions on this board you make the mistake that I assert that I know that their is no God. I don't know that. I hope there is one. I just don't see any proof to convince anyone using rational means to make up their mind that their is one. Therefore anyone that convinces themselves that he does exist absent this proof is deluding themselves. But keep skewing my position if it makes you happy. That way you don't have to face the inadequecies of your own beliefs.

And Morm, I've made the same statement that Ev made on this board tens of times but in this case I was backing up the assertion by another member that religious belief is a form of delusion. And I got attacked for it. You don't know any better, but others should. Nice how years of reasoned debate and overt attempts at polite discussion can be whiped out by the single use of a word, though not polite, is still accurate.

KE

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kenmeer livermaile
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P.S. My cut'n'paste function in me browser plays tricks with me. I didn't mean to put Long Tom Sylvarrh's words ("Plus, I’ve saved a few whales, made a little trubble for the Buscheneys of
the world, and recycled a **** pot of beer cans.")in your quote-space, madam.

I'd meant to quote this:

"Just out of curiosity - for the purposes of this thread, how are we defining "God"?

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KnightEnder
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quote:
What if I were to say that I define "God" as the totality of everything in the universe? 'He' would then have a consciousness, because we have consciousnesses (gah! too many 's's!), but 'he' wouldn't be the Judeo-Christian deity y'all are apparently arguing about...


Fine. No problem with that at all.

I probably wouldn't have such a problem with Christianity if it wasn't the dominant irrational belief system whose members are bent on coverting us all to. Or making us feel iferior, evil, or damned if we don't. Especially here.

KE

[ June 26, 2005, 12:15 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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KnightEnder
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Dag, either you or too knew or to ignorant to see the refutation has been made countless times. Atheism isn't belief, it is lack of belief. If you can't grasp that, it's cause you don't want to grasp it.

KE

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Everard
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"Let me be clear - I don't buy that as a refutation, specifically when one distinguishes the strong atheist statement from the weak atheist statement."


Since your post was 16 minutes after mine, I'm assuming you didn't really go look in the archives. So... which particular statement do you want a refutation of?

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Dagonee
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So you concede that the strong atheist position (the belief that there is no God, as opposed to the belief that the evidence does not support the existence of God) is irrational?
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KnightEnder
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Yes, belief with out proof is irrtional.

KE

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Everard
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The statement "I am certain there is no god" as as irrational as the statement "I am certain there is a god." The statement that "I do not believe there is a god because there's no evidence, and I've looked using the formulas people have given me, but its possible new evidence could come to light that would demand I re-examine the situation" is rational.
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kenmeer livermaile
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"This whole post is needlessly snotty, Ev. If you don't get what he's saying, ask him to clarify. But you don't get to say "since *I* don't grok it, it doesn't make any sense. And you never do, neener neener." You are normally better than this."

O, Essence of Reasonablness, thy perfume we know but from afar. It swells sweet, indeed, byt thy nose, ma'am, canst escape the stink of the cracks it intrudes in eforts to, if not sanitize them, at least make them stink less. Behold:

"Nope. Thats not my position at all, Ken. It'd be nice if you'd spend as much time trying to understand my posts, as I am required trying to understand anything you write. But... I never did think you are actually trying to communicate."

I rarely see you get down to the nitty gritty of an issue or principle without resorting to ad hominism, Ev. It's almost like a Law of Everardic Nature.

I've grown quite accustomed to Ev throwing in the towel (temporarily, for Ev Loves to Fight about as much as most of us do) by claiming that his opponent was never really trying, or debating, or making a committed effort to be understood, or...

It's just something Ev regularly does.

"Therefore anyone that convinces themselves that he does exist absent this proof is deluding themselves."

You insist in continuing with that 'D' word, KE, and in so doing, continue degrading the integrity of your othwerwise quite tenable position.

Concinving oneself without compellng positive evidence is not synonymous with deluding myself. I convinced myself, yea, against hope, that a fine fair moral lovely woman would choose to share my life with me. I had no supporting evidence for this but plenty to the contrary. Nonetheless, the miracle happened.

Conviction without solid evidence by itself is NOT delusion. A delusioin becomes a delusion when the conviction can be PROVEN wrong. For example, I might convince myself I am you. You could esily disprove this, by simply occupying a room with me.

For I physically exist, and so do you. Doing this with something whose physical existence is only conjecture is not so easy. Indeed, logic insists it is IMPOSSIBLE. God's possibility of existence is greater than your possibility of proving God doesn't exist.

But contnue bashing yourself with that sword, KE, an it please ye. But don't be surprized whern folks make fun of your self-inflicted bruises. It;s just the nature of the game.

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kenmeer livermaile
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"The statement "I am certain there is no god" as as irrational as the statement "I am certain there is a god." The statement that "I do not believe there is a god because there's no evidence, and I've looked using the formulas people have given me, but its possible new evidence could come to light that would demand I re-examine the situation" is rational."

Bingo. Well'writ. Exactamundo.

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Everard
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Edited out: Not gonna get in another fight with kenmeer.

[ June 26, 2005, 01:17 PM: Message edited by: Everard ]

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The Drake
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I give up. I don't know how many other ways to say that belief in God is not a delusion. Anyone who thinks that must be deluded.

[ June 26, 2005, 01:33 PM: Message edited by: The Drake ]

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halfhaggis
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Why is this thread still active?

The thread title is "Calling Christians Delusional"
At some point KnightEnder (who I believe had originally made the implication) conceded that actually, they are irrational - not delusional.
javelin, who had taken exception to the whole delusional thing in the first place, agreed. Yes - Christians have an irrational belief.

Everyone agrees. Case closed.

Except, for some reason, everyone is still trying to win the argument - even though a draw has already been agreed upon. Or am I totally misunderstanding something here?

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Funean
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Nope. And there are even some people who agreed with each other who were fighting. Or maybe that was on the other stupid thread. Let's let them both slide decently down the page (says Funean, hypocritically as she prevents same with her post [Smile] )
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javelin
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quote:
Originally posted by KnightEnder:
Jav, once again, as so many people before you have done on so many occassions on this board you make the mistake that I assert that I know that their is no God. I don't know that. I hope there is one. I just don't see any proof to convince anyone using rational means to make up their mind that their is one. Therefore anyone that convinces themselves that he does exist absent this proof is deluding themselves. But keep skewing my position if it makes you happy. That way you don't have to face the inadequecies of your own beliefs.

I'll say this: if you still believe it's possible there is a god, and I made it sound like I didn't think you did, I apologize for my misunderstanding - your hostility, and general lack of respect toward those who belief in the existence of god, as evidenced over the last few days, is a change in your attitude, from what I've seen from you before here. Basically, an intensifying of your previous stance. Because, as pretty much everyone has pointed out, in order to call someone "delusional", you have to belief that their delusion is not based on something real, I was taking that as a statement that you are now sure that there is no god. If that's not the case, then I still don't understand how you can consider the belief that there is a god to be delusional, but I apologize for my misunderstanding of your current position on the question of "Is there a god?". And again, as pretty much everyone has already said - not having a rational (and I believe you are using the term rational to mean "empirical, logical and scientific") means to prove something does not make that assertion delusional, just not "rational", under that definition.

As for this: "But keep skewing my position if it makes you happy. That way you don't have to face the inadequecies of your own beliefs." - well, if you honestly believe this is the case, and I'm hoping this is coming from anger, then I'm not sure what I'm doing bothering to discuss this with you - one of the reasons I've had so much respect for you on this board in the past is (a) you are willing to admit it when you see you've made a mistake; (b) you generally treat people with respect, even when you think they are pretty close to crazy, as long as they make reasonable arguments. I was of the impression that you pretty much reciprocated that respect, but I'm starting to doubt it.

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javelin
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quote:
Originally posted by halfhaggis:
Why is this thread still active?

The thread title is "Calling Christians Delusional"
At some point KnightEnder (who I believe had originally made the implication) conceded that actually, they are irrational - not delusional.
javelin, who had taken exception to the whole delusional thing in the first place, agreed. Yes - Christians have an irrational belief.

Everyone agrees. Case closed.

Except, for some reason, everyone is still trying to win the argument - even though a draw has already been agreed upon. Or am I totally misunderstanding something here?

Actually, KE has said over and over that he still believes Christians to be delusional, not just irrational in their belief. He HAS said that he'll stop calling Christians delusional, out of respect, and for that, I thank him. The thread continues because some of us would like to at least understand why, with everything posted on this thread, KE still persists in the believing that religious people (it was said in a general way, not specifically towards Christians) are delusional.

But you are right - probably good to drop this, since no progress seems to be being made, at this point - everyone seems to have weighed in, and it doesn't sound like anyone is really moving from their positions. *sigh* A bit odd for Ornery, I must say.

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kenmeer livermaile
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"Edited out: Not gonna get in another fight with kenmeer."

It's OK, Ev. I wouldn't have pursued it anyway. Per my fave Ornery rule (a little wallflower orphan starving for attention):

If you post something and someone disagrees with your idea, their disagreement does not erase your original statement. There is no need to answer except to clarify or offer new material.

"Anyone who thinks that must be deluded."

And we have anuthah WINNAH! Nicely done, Drake.

"Or am I totally misunderstanding something here?"

You're missing the idea that we might not necessarily care what KE and jav think about this topic and so might not consider their concilation a closing of the topic. It's not like they've copyrighted the question...

[ June 26, 2005, 02:29 PM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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"The thread continues because some of us would like to at least understand why, with everything posted on this thread, KE still persists in the believing that religious people (it was said in a general way, not specifically towards Christians) are delusional."

Only partially true, jav. Some of us are just plain interested in exploring and defining concepts of epitemology, period.

As for folks moving from their positions or not... se Drake's conclusion.

Or, to quote me own personal homebrewed favorite mantra:

"I'll accept you in my hallucination if you'll accept me in yours."

[ June 26, 2005, 02:32 PM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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KnightEnder
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"But keep skewing my position if it makes you happy. That way you don't have to face the inadequecies of your own beliefs." - well, if you honestly believe this is the case,"

Not, directed at you Jav.

KE

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KidA
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Oh, hell. I had so much to say, and now it looks like it's too late because I was away too long. Can't say I have any regrets, though...while y'all were arguing about God yesterday, I was dancing and drinking on the beach with friends and "mermaids". [Cool]

I am an atheist. By atheist, I mean, literally, "a person without theism." I believe that some Christians are delusional, but I do not believe there is anything inherently delusional about any religious beliefs.

I'm a little dismayed at how easily some of my fellow skeptics have resorted to mentioning "God" and "unicorn" and "monkey in my sock" as if they are all in any way equivalent. Religion has a purpose, and most Christians I know understand this. The purpose being community, spiritual communion, moral guidance, etc. God is a very complex concept, that must sometimes be expressed in simpler terms. Part of spiritual growth, as one moves from childhood to adulthood, is to see past the fable-aspect of scripture, and realize that religion is the work of fellow humans. This does not necessarily eradicte the possibility of God. For some, this even makes God more real. C.S. Lewis, for instance, was an atheist well into adulthood, and only converted after he was convinced intellectually of the verity of scripture. (It was an incremental process for him, but the undramatic "final moment" is my all-time favorite conversion story: "I know very well when ... the final step was taken. I was driven to Whipsnade one sunny morning. When we set out I did not believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and when we reached the zoo I did.")

I've read too many accounts of religious conversions and experiences - which occur in a tremendous variety of ways, and sometimes to people who have no religious inclinations, or even any hardships, that might propel them into such a belief - to believe that anything other than a certain humility is in order. As an atheist who'd read all the psychologists and skeptics early on, it was all too easy for me to look at Christians as "deluded" believing that I understood the full scope of their experience. You'd be amazed how many Christian thinkers have heard it all, lived it all, considered it all, and still believe without the slightest difficulty. I'll never forget how I shivered, reading Pascal, when he stated with that piercing coolness of his that "Atheism represents a certain strength of mind - to a point."

Part of being a skeptic is accepting the limitations of your own senses. Now, fellow atheists, be honest...have you never felt something you couldn't explain, but that just made you want to explode with joy or sorrow? Every human being has moments, usually in solitude, where they feel touched by "something". Plenty of scientific explanations are offered for this, and they may satisfy on rational/emprical level, but that's next to useless as concerns your own emotions and experiences. So...how do you articulate what you feel? That is what the imagination is for. Many romantics believed the imagination to be much more than an ephemeral inner theater - they saw it as a higher level of perception. Religion, at its non-dogmatic best, is a complex and finely-crafted articulation of the experience of the unseen-but-deeply-felt, what we call "spiritual life." Once you realize that the idea of, say, Christ, is far more powerful than any issue of his reality or non-reality, you'll see where I'm coming from. There were many street-magicians and healers and tellers of parables in Chirst's time - anyone who gets hung up on whether this particular guy "really" rose from the dead and cleansed our sins misses the point. The idea of Christ did rise from the dead, and did bring comfort to countless people. The psychic process by which this much-needed spiritual healing occurs can be expressed in two ways - you can do it in the emotionless language of rationality or psychology, or you can do it in the language of religion, which satisfies on all levels, epxressing how it feels while enacting the process itself.

I don't believe that Christ was anything other than a "great teacher." But I understand the emotional process fo belief enough to know that explaining on literal terms why this is the case does nothing to address the emotional connection the believer has with Christ. The name, the image, the fable, the ritual, all of these things are just surface explanations of a much greater mystery that would still be there without labels we have for them. It's a mystery not of origins or science, but of the nature of consciousness and the pain and pleasure of self-awareness.

[ June 26, 2005, 05:21 PM: Message edited by: KidA ]

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KidA
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Tom,

If that still leaves your earlier question unanswered, I'll explain further.

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aupton15
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"You people all seem to be equating delusion with a psycotic mental disorder. But people delude themselves all the time without being mentally inbalanced."

Very true. Well, true enough that I'd give it to you. Mental health is much like physical health, in that being "normal" is not the same as being "healthy". My "normal" physical health means I'm fifteen pounds overweight with slightly elevated blood pressure and not enough good cholesterol. Likewise most of us have bad mental hygiene and live with some delusions that don't impede our day-to-day lives too much. In fact, the degree to which delusions interfere is another important factor in diagnosis. I would offer that most religious people do not hold beliefs that interfere with their daily lives. I think the whole argument is winding down, so I'm only adding this because I like to talk about mental health and religion, and this is one of few opportunities for both [Smile]

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javelin
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That's beautifully written KidA - thanks.
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TomDavidson
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"have you never felt something you couldn't explain, but that just made you want to explode with joy or sorrow?"

No, see, I haven't. I don't think consciousness is much of a mystery at all.

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kenmeer livermaile
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"Now, fellow atheists, be honest...have you never felt something you couldn't explain, but that just made you want to explode with joy or sorrow? Every human being has moments, usually in solitude, where they feel touched by "something". Plenty of scientific explanations are offered for this, and they may satisfy on rational/emprical level, but that's next to useless as concerns your own emotions and experiences. So...how do you articulate what you feel? "

Excuse me. My irreverence is in high mode (which means that my spiritual essence or what have you is also highly activated). So I have to crack this wisdom:

(paranoid schizophrenic who believes he is God's Chosen confidante, speaking,apparently, to himself but, in reality -- the paranoid', that is, he is speaking to God): 'Would you stop TOUCHING me!?!?!'

"or you can do it in the language of religion, which satisfies on all levels, epxressing how it feels while enacting the process itself."

Except, for me, the intellectual level. But then, we rarely have it all at the same time. It's always something... or another.

Having mirrors in our heads makes for some interesting perceptions, alright. Trying to explain 'emall is liable to drive at least one part of oneself nuts.

[ June 26, 2005, 07:39 PM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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KidA
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quote:
"have you never felt something you couldn't explain, but that just made you want to explode with joy or sorrow?"

No, see, I haven't. I don't think consciousness is much of a mystery at all.

Then you are either really boring, or really a genius beyond anyone else living today (please don't answer that...).

Even among atheist philosophers and scientists who seek to explain it there is much dissention. If you've read Dennett, Searle, Penrose, Kurzweil, Lanier, etc, there is still a great deal of disagreement about how consciousness arises, and even what "it" is. And even with scientific explanation of "it", you would be nowhere near getting to the bottom of "it" as a first-hand experiential problem.

Well, if it isn't a mystery to you...then explain it! Go ahead. How do inanimate particles become conscious? Does it arise at the cellular level, or is it a higher "emergent function" of the forebrain? Can it be replecated by a digital simularcrum? Do symbols occupy a physical space within the brain? Why do you perceive a "self" when no brain structure exists that corresponds to "self"? We've got time. This essay question will be 50 points, and graded on a curve. [Roll Eyes]

[ June 26, 2005, 07:49 PM: Message edited by: KidA ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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"Then you are either really boring, or really a genius beyond anyone else living today (please don't answer that...). "

I think that might should read "bored" rather than boring.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Well, if it isn't a mystery to you...then explain it! Go ahead. How do inanimate particles become conscious? Does it arise at the cellular level, or is it a higher "emergent function" of the forebrain? Can it be replecated by a digital simularcrum? Do symbols occupy a physical space within the brain? Why do you perceive a "self" when no brain structure exists that corresponds to "self"? We've got time. This essay question will be 50 points, and graded on a curve
Maybe we're not conscious. Maybe we're just imagining that we're conscious [Big Grin]
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KidA
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kenmeer, Tom, KE,

You guys are making me feel ill.

[ June 26, 2005, 08:29 PM: Message edited by: KidA ]

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musket
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quote:
If only Dustin Hoffman were fat enough to play Sam Gutman -- The Fatman -- but I suspect they'll have to ask John Goodman to see if he can wash off that Nice Guy burnish and portray a hypercerebral slug of evil.
Wasn't that Caspar Gutman?

But yep, if anybody could recreate Samuel Spade it'd be Johnny Depp, not that Hammett's original character looked like either him or Bogie. And I recommend Juliette Binoche (be still my heart) for Ilsa. She has the same luminesence on screen that Ingrid Bergman had. But who would play Captain Reynaud, or Ugarti?

Anyway I agree entirely with KidA's post.

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TomDavidson
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"Well, if it isn't a mystery to you...then explain it! Go ahead. How do inanimate particles become conscious?"

It's a gestalt of stored stimuli and chemical processes. *shrug* I don't mean to make light of it -- it does seem awfully neat when you pause to think about the whole thing -- but there's no need to get all mystical about the human mind.

I think there's a difference between saying, "There's a lot we don't know about the universe, so we might as well call that God," and what most people mean by God when they use the term.

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