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Personal Beliefs
08-05-2013, 10:11 PM
Post: #21
RE: Personal Beliefs
If you want to change it, then you have to be willing to wait. Calling people out on their beliefs is, more likely than not, going to make them hold onto their beliefs tighter. It's a polarizing effect. A single discussion is not going to change anyone's opinion when it is something as complicated as their belief. People who become atheists were already questioning the concept of religion. They already had seeds of change planted in them a long ago.

Changing people's opinions mean nothing if you force it, you have to guide them to the answer. The best way to do that is to teach people to have an open, yet skeptical, mind and to allow them to question everything. This is a societal matter, though. Religious subjects should not be taught in school, such as creationism. The public should not look the other way every time a religious figure is shown to abuse their power. But these things take time, unfortunately. Not only because the majority is religious, but because we are taught to be politically correct and this would violate that.

People see Mother Teresa as a role model but she was a sick, disgusting human. She helped Nazis escape after World War 2. She also put sick people on flat, lumpy cots to die from their painful symptoms under the claim that the pain made them closer to Jesus. She said all of this while she profited in luxury. Yet most people look completely skip that part about her. I don't see that as acceptable, so anytime I hear someone talk about Mother Teresa respectfully, I show them how she was a greedy criminal who used the bible as a tool to hurt others.
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08-05-2013, 10:24 PM
Post: #22
RE: Personal Beliefs
(08-05-2013 10:11 PM)ZombieOnTheBrain Wrote:  If you want to change it, then you have to be willing to wait. Calling people out on their beliefs is, more likely than not, going to make them hold onto their beliefs tighter. It's a polarizing effect. A single discussion is not going to change anyone's opinion when it is something as complicated as their belief. People who become atheists were already questioning the concept of religion. They already had seeds of change planted in them a long ago.

This is just simply not true. Waiting did absolutely nothing. I repeat: If you do not openly question religion, it will continue to thrive as it has for thousands of years and more generations than you can count. Yet, in the past couple decades, we've seen an increase in freethought faster than ever before. Do you think that's because atheists grew more patient, or more outspoken?

Not talking about a problem does not solve a problem. And while a single conversation rarely ever changes a person's mind (nor should it!), a series of conversations can get the ball rolling. Deconversion is a complicated and personal thing. Everyone experiences it differently. But something has to kick start it or these people will be brainwashed forever. Waiting allows for more indoctrination. Further comfortability with falsehoods and lies and cognitive dissonance.

No one has ever accomplished anything on purpose by being passive.

No one has ever accomplished anything on purpose by being passive.

No one has ever accomplished anything on purpose by being passive.

No one has ever accomplished anything on purpose by being passive.

(08-05-2013 10:11 PM)ZombieOnTheBrain Wrote:  Changing people's opinions mean nothing if you force it, you have to guide them to the answer. The best way to do that is to teach people to have an open, yet skeptical, mind and to allow them to question everything. This is a societal matter, though. Religious subjects should not be taught in school, such as creationism. The public should not look the other way every time a religious figure is shown to abuse their power. But these things take time, unfortunately. Not only because the majority is religious, but because we are taught to be politically correct and this would violate that.

On teaching religion in school, here's an interesting TED talk I saw recently:
http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_dennett_s_r...arren.html

No one here is advocating the forcing of atheism. I am saying we need to bring the discussion to the table, and bring the table to the oppressed. Religious people, in a simplistic way of looking at it, are oppressed. They have been convinced of a whole lot of human-conceived nonsense that causes them to waste their time, their efforts, their energy, and their votes on things that do not help them or they actively harm them.

I'm not saying "LET'S MAKE PEOPLE ATHEISTS," I'm saying "LET'S PROMOTE DISCUSSION". People, specifically in this thread and also generally, like the idea of "don't talk about it" and "let people be". This will not promote positive change. Let's talk about it. Let's stir things up. Let's get people thinking about things that they don't on their own. Let's rescue people.

(08-05-2013 10:11 PM)ZombieOnTheBrain Wrote:  People see Mother Teresa as a role model but she was a sick, disgusting human. She helped Nazis escape after World War 2. She also put sick people on flat, lumpy cots to die from their painful symptoms under the claim that the pain made them closer to Jesus. She said all of this while she profited in luxury. Yet most people look completely skip that part about her. I don't see that as acceptable, so anytime I hear someone talk about Mother Teresa respectfully, I show them how she was a greedy criminal who used the bible as a tool to hurt others.

I don't understand why this was included in your post. Did someone say something about Mother Teresa? PS: I agree with everything in this paragraph.

Chances are, if you're reading this, it's after reading a ridiculously long post by me, something harshly phrased or confrontational, and/or me being stupid. I want to apologize for my above post, and end this signature with a quote of wisdom to soothe your soul.

"Ho ho..hoho hoho..santa for the wondering thismust be a joke in your series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1"
~A scholar beyond his time

[10:10:35 PM] Airrest (Eric): YOU WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG
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08-05-2013, 10:37 PM
Post: #23
RE: Personal Beliefs
(08-05-2013 10:11 PM)ZombieOnTheBrain Wrote:  People see Mother Teresa as a role model but she was a sick, disgusting human. She helped Nazis escape after World War 2. She also put sick people on flat, lumpy cots to die from their painful symptoms under the claim that the pain made them closer to Jesus. She said all of this while she profited in luxury. Yet most people look completely skip that part about her. I don't see that as acceptable, so anytime I hear someone talk about Mother Teresa respectfully, I show them how she was a greedy criminal who used the bible as a tool to hurt others.

(08-05-2013 10:11 PM)1KidsEntertainment Wrote:  I don't understand why this was included in your post. Did someone say something about Mother Teresa? PS: I agree with everything in this paragraph.

Maybe that's one of his pet peeves?

#Sweg
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08-05-2013, 11:04 PM
Post: #24
RE: Personal Beliefs
Actually, yes, it is a peeve of mine. But I thought that it was a nice way to show how society ignores the proven flaws of religious people and how I am doing my part to get rid of that ignorance. But I can see that I didn't convey that as smoothly as I intended. Oh well.

The weird things about this argument is that we're agreeing on the same conclusion, but we disagree on the methods. I'm enjoying this turn of events. And I do agree on just about all of your points, 1Kid, but I think that to get the result we need to pace ourselves.

When I said that we should be patient, I didn't mean remain passive. I was saying that we should wait until the time is right. When a little kid is crying at their grandpa's funeral, it wouldn't be right to tell them right there that is no after all and that they'll (probably) never be able talk with their loved one again. But when someone says that you should act like Mother Teresa, then it is alright since they are telling you to act like a criminal who has been treated like she could do no wrong.

But the real question here is when these things should be called out, and I can't say that I have an answer for that. To me, it depends on the situation, the people involved, and what I think I have to gain and lose. Maybe I am being shortsighted by saving face and choosing not to argue most of the time. My experiences have taught me to be more gentle and patient. It has worked well for me. Usually I offer a bit of my insight and let them decide for themselves. It normally doesn't change people's minds but it shows my stance on the subject, and that if they want to talk about it then I'd be willing to talk. I wait until the horse gets thirsty.
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08-05-2013, 11:48 PM
Post: #25
RE: Personal Beliefs
100% agreed, you have to use judgment to figure out the time and the place. As you said, a funeral's not a great time.

But honestly, other than times of grief (for dead family, friends, or maybe grief because of a failed relationship or personal trauma), I can't think of a time where it's not justified. There is no "ideal" time to do most anything in life and this is one of those things that has to be brought places that make people uncomfortable. What's more important? People's short term comfort or the human race's long term well-being?

Chances are, if you're reading this, it's after reading a ridiculously long post by me, something harshly phrased or confrontational, and/or me being stupid. I want to apologize for my above post, and end this signature with a quote of wisdom to soothe your soul.

"Ho ho..hoho hoho..santa for the wondering thismust be a joke in your series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1"
~A scholar beyond his time

[10:10:35 PM] Airrest (Eric): YOU WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG
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08-06-2013, 08:31 AM
Post: #26
RE: Personal Beliefs
The ideal time would be when the person is ready to listen. These things are a two-way street. You are right, if we want to make the change, then we shouldn't just wait for it, action must be taken. Although, just as important as the action is how it is received.

Some people don't feel comfortable questioning their religion, probably because of an upbringing of being told that straying from the religion is bring them eternal damnation. It's like trying to cure a phobia, it works best when done bit by bit. There is the option to do it all at once, which is a technique called Flooding, but most people don't feel like they can handle that extreme.

A mindset is not easy to change. People can recognize the problem and still find difficulty transitioning. We can do this by being patient with their progress while calling out the more extreme cases such as the Westboro Baptist Church, parents threatening their children with the idea of Hell, and when people insist that a miracle happened simply because someone happened to survive a tragedy.
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08-06-2013, 09:39 AM
Post: #27
RE: Personal Beliefs
I'm not ignoring the fact that you have to do it in ways that are effective. But bringing it up and conversing about it and making your opposition known when others spit out their beliefs like it's nothing is one of the most effective ways, not in the short term, but in the long term. If you listen to deconversion stories, you will find that most of them start with some sort of event that triggers the "something's not right here" part of their brain. One way to kick-start that is to remind people that they have that part of their brain and they can use it when it comes to religion just as much as they can use it in any other situation.

Chances are, if you're reading this, it's after reading a ridiculously long post by me, something harshly phrased or confrontational, and/or me being stupid. I want to apologize for my above post, and end this signature with a quote of wisdom to soothe your soul.

"Ho ho..hoho hoho..santa for the wondering thismust be a joke in your series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1"
~A scholar beyond his time

[10:10:35 PM] Airrest (Eric): YOU WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG
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08-06-2013, 06:06 PM
Post: #28
RE: Personal Beliefs
I realize the thread kind of resolved into "atheists/theists are dumb when they force shit on you," but I think Kat's original post was more against condescension than anything.

For example, if I'm any smarter right now than I was when I was a Christian, it's simply because I've gained more experience. I wouldn't be any dumber had I remained a Christian. However, if I had gone to an atheist-heavy community, like Reddit's r/Atheism for example, the response of a vocal minority if not a majority would be "how can you believe in fairy tails," "science disproves everything," and "I respect you less because you're a Christian."

That kind of condescending attitude is a pet peeve of mine as well. But that's not just religion or even "personal beliefs" that does that; I once had a "friend" in middle school who had moved from Wisconsin to South Carolina, and about every day I got some lecture about how great the north was and how bad the south was, and by extension how dumb I was for being southern. Everyone in South Carolina was in the Ku Klux Klan, and there was no racism ever in Wisconsin.

So I've been getting a lot of that as a southerner and (at one point) a Christian since I started on the Internet, and while I don't expect people to not challenge me, the disrespect that many people use to make themselves feel superior infuriates me.

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08-06-2013, 07:04 PM
Post: #29
RE: Personal Beliefs
The disrespect is bad, yeah. But you get that from the religious a loooooooooot as well, if not more. I was told repeatedly by my driving teacher that "Every knee shall bow!" at every lesson. I keep myself in fairly secular circles and I'm still bombarded by god and unabashed denial of reason and persecution of nonbelief and secularism allllllll the time. It's a pet peeve of mine when religious say that "I can't believe you're Christian" is equal to or worse than "You know in your heart that Jesus is lord!", so I had to type up that essay explaining why merely speaking up is not wrong.

Chances are, if you're reading this, it's after reading a ridiculously long post by me, something harshly phrased or confrontational, and/or me being stupid. I want to apologize for my above post, and end this signature with a quote of wisdom to soothe your soul.

"Ho ho..hoho hoho..santa for the wondering thismust be a joke in your series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1"
~A scholar beyond his time

[10:10:35 PM] Airrest (Eric): YOU WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG
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08-06-2013, 08:37 PM
Post: #30
RE: Personal Beliefs
Truthordeal is right. We did hijack the thread and stumbled onto a different argument. Maybe we could split the part where we discussed about religious tolerance into its own thread and allow this to only be about the topic Kat originally posted.
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08-17-2013, 10:49 AM (This post was last modified: 08-17-2013 10:51 AM by Kat.)
Post: #31
RE: Personal Beliefs
Damn, this did go off topic. Also, Airrest, I know evolution is fact. I should have worded my response better. I meant it wasn't a law, it will be stuck in theory, because I don't feel at this point we have enough empirical evidence to solidify it as a law.

Also, truth is right, it was more about condensation than anything else.
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08-17-2013, 12:34 PM
Post: #32
RE: Personal Beliefs
(08-17-2013 10:49 AM)Kat Wrote:  I meant it wasn't a law, it will be stuck in theory, because I don't feel at this point we have enough empirical evidence to solidify it as a law.

This isn't how science works. It has absolutely nothing to do with how much evidence there is. There are mountains of evidence for evolution.

The scientific definition for certain words are different from their common usage. "Theory" and "Law" are among these words.

I highly recommend looking through this playlist in your spare time.

Chances are, if you're reading this, it's after reading a ridiculously long post by me, something harshly phrased or confrontational, and/or me being stupid. I want to apologize for my above post, and end this signature with a quote of wisdom to soothe your soul.

"Ho ho..hoho hoho..santa for the wondering thismust be a joke in your series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1"
~A scholar beyond his time

[10:10:35 PM] Airrest (Eric): YOU WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG
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08-17-2013, 02:27 PM
Post: #33
RE: Personal Beliefs
(08-17-2013 10:49 AM)Kat Wrote:  I meant it wasn't a law, it will be stuck in theory, because I don't feel at this point we have enough empirical evidence to solidify it as a law.

Actually, evolution is only a theory simply because it is possible that we'll come up with a theory that explains it better in the future. It's the same reason gravity is still a theory. Einstein improved upon it after centuries of the belief that it was an attraction. The hope is that if the current theory of evolution is 99.999% right then we can come up with something 99.9999% right later on.


Quote:Also, truth is right, it was more about condescending than anything else.

Back on topic, I think that it's terrible when a teacher is acting condescending. In the last year alone, I had to face a teacher like this. She was clearly bias on certain matters, most of which I didn't agree with. She made the class subject, which I already didn't like too much, to become unbearable.

I could tell that she didn't like me and she never made an effort to change her mind. Luckily, it didn't affect my grades but small, everyday actions from her seemed a little spiteful.
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08-17-2013, 08:58 PM
Post: #34
RE: Personal Beliefs
In science, it is only a theory when you have ENOUGH evidence to prove the claim. Otherwise, it's called a "hypothesis". Theory and law are different. A theory doesn't become a law. A law isn't any "better" than a theory. We have observable evidence of Einstein's Theory of Relativity. Yet, it's still a theory, and it will never be called "The Law of Relativity".

A law is more observable and "obvious" than a theory. The angles in a triangle will add up to 180 degrees. It's a law. You can't challenge it. It's exactly what it is. Never in a million years it will be 179 degrees. A theory, on the other hand, can be weak or strong depending on the amount of evidence it has. A weak theory doesn't mean it's not true; it just means it still has few unanswered questions. It has some gaps that needs to be filled with more evidence.

Theory can be "changed/modified". Newton's theory of Universal Gravitation, for example. Newton called it a "law", but it was technically a theory. Anyway, he said any two objects with mass will attract each other and we call it "gravity". However, now we know that any two objects with energy will attract each other. That's why gravity can attract even light, although it has no mass. Was Newton's theory wrong? No. Gravity still does exist. And his formulas still work just fine. The theory was simply modified.

Fast forwarding to 500 years from now, our knowledge in evolution will most likely be very different. It will have answers to many things that are still mysteries now. Many things that are already known now will be modified. But the basic idea will remain the same.

I refuse to be constantly bullied by Truthordeal just because I'm a "Junior" Mod.
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10-08-2013, 09:16 PM
Post: #35
RE: Personal Beliefs
I know I just got back to this, but thanks for describing that better than I could. Words at times don't come to me the way they should. You hit it right on the nail about what I was trying to say.
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