111 posts / 0 new
Last post
Sheldon's picture
Very true of course, but more

Very true of course, but more telling is why Breezy thinks a message inspired by a perfect deity should be anything less than perfect, let alone contain obscenely barbaric and immoral teachings, and then accuse others of bias. He has started 5 separate threads on slavery, and still won't accept the axiomatic fact that the bible endorses slavery, the buying and owning of one human by another as property, and how to pass them on to your children as property, and how you may beat them, even to death, as long as they don't die within 48 hours of the beating.

I'd be more inclined to play his little game if he could show any objectivity himself, until then this is by far the funniest thread he's started.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
"But the caveat would be, all

"But the caveat would be, all bible's do, that doesn't make Christianity special nor should it gloss over the numerous immoral things within it, especially within the old testament."

Well this is why my analogy is good. How exactly is it a "compliment" if the next thing you do is downplay and burry that compliment in negativity? That's why I said don't bother. Because your need for doing so is a form of confirmation bias, not intellectual honesty. For every good quality you mention, you feel the impulse to think of three bad ones to overshadow it, and keep your position safe.

I don't really care what things you think are good. I only care that you're able to see them and acknowledge them. Your caveat makes me think you aren't really able to. You could say the font of the Bible is the only good thing about it for all I care. But if you do, don't turn around and be like "but all books have good fonts, so that doesn't make the Bible's font special, nor does it gloss over my dislike of the verse system."

Randomhero1982's picture
Not at all, we can all

Not at all, we can all appreciate things in life whilst still acknowledging their faults too...

I find great white sharks to be beautiful creatures and the hunting of them to be barbaric... yet they are horrible fuckers that I have not intention of being within the same open sea as them.

I could also say William Shakespeare was a genius but by the same token I could say many of his works aren't as original as people think and inspired by other greats such as Thomas Wyatt The Elder.

Context is important! To simply ignore it is daft.

As I've said though, there are some lovely written passages but as someone who never experienced religious indoctrination, I can say it's not that special and that's from a non atheist position... just simply there are far better pieces of literature.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
"We can all appreciate things

"We can all appreciate things in life whilst still acknowledging their faults too."

Duh, you're basically restating and reversing my OP. Except that I already see you and others talk about the faults, and I want to see if you are able to acknowledge some good. For example:

"Christians have a long track record of acting like twats.. you don't get absolved of all wrong doing just because you have a new book of fairy tales." -Randomhero1982

So I personally think you failed the task if you can't acknowledge some good without caveats. I personally think that Muslims abstaining form alcohol is great, and far superior than many Christians which don't. I applaud them for that, and have absolutely no desire to give "context." I also think atheists that fight for and participate in humanitarian projects is awesome; and I have no desire to downplay secular charities, by saying they're no better than religious charities.

Randomhero1982's picture
Ok, I'll play your game...

Ok, I'll play your game...

It displays a wonderful level of imagination

No caveats... happy?!

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
No, just give up.

No, just give up.

Sky Pilot's picture


The Bible is beautifully written because the English wrote the Bible.

Pitar's picture
The reality check joke here

The reality check joke here is on you, John. You assume out of the gate that the bible is interpretable. Then you place atop that assumption another that there is a correct interpretation. This begets another assumption that multiple interpretations are extant and (pick a number of them) wrong. You need some splainin' to do before anyone can hold your post to the genuine light of logic, which, BTW, is scarce in the presence of bible speak. When you can do that and humbly provide the concrete evidence that what you have to say isn't just more bible drool, I will elbow my way to your soapbox and give you 20 seconds of my time.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I do assume the Bible is

I do assume the Bible is interpretable. That's why I believe atheists have incentive to pick the least charitable one, the least logical one, the least beneficent one. Because doing so makes it easiest to reject.

When I want to know about a group I disagree with, such as Muslims or atheists, I go to them. I listen to their beliefs in their most persuasive form. Not the form easiest for me to reject.

I think the person that is unable to speak good of the opposition, does so out of fear of being persuaded.

It's up to you whether you answer; and it's up to you to ask yourself why if you don't.

jonthecatholic's picture
You got it right!

You got it right!

It's very easy to straw-man a position you oppose. Theists are usually called out on these forums for straw-maning the "atheist position" (if one actually exists).

algebe's picture
@John 61X Breezy: "I listen

@John 61X Breezy: "I listen to their beliefs in their most persuasive form."

Like many here, I listened to Christian arguments in their most persuasive form. They were presented to me by people in authority over me--teachers, principals, vicars, Salvation Army majors, etc. They had complete freedom to present the message in any way and in any form they chose for years and years while I was between the ages of four and 15. Arguing or even asking difficult questions were punishable offenses. Non-attendance was a punishable offense.

So I reckon I've given the Bible a reasonable hearing. And now I have a confirmation bias against it.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture


We're all biased. I'm under the belief that I've chosen my biases correctly, as I'm sure you are as well. What I'm mostly against, are those that hide their biases under a pretense of objectivity.

Sheldon's picture

I do assume the Bible is interpretable. That's why I believe atheists have incentive to pick the least charitable one, the least logical one, the least beneficent one."

At least you admitted it is pure subjective assumption on your part, though I seriously doubt you realised the significance of your statement against the backdrop of your claim that atheist are *biased*, and of course that you as a theist are not. The hilarity is going to run and run with this one I think.

Sky Pilot's picture
John 6IX Breezy,

John 6IX Breezy,

I agree that the Bible is interpretable. Every story can be interpreted at least a half dozen ways, if not more. However, there is only one central theme and all of the stories are based on one or more of the Ten Commandments found in Exodus 34:10-28.

Kataclismic's picture
I don't think you fully

I don't think you fully understand confirmation bias, John. It is used in place of evidence. For instance, if I point to my cat lying in the corner sleeping soundly for the last four hours and I say, "I have the laziest cat on the planet, she hasn't moved in four hours", then I am using my cat's current state to confirm my assertion or bias. If I was biased to think that my cat was the most active on the planet then the last four hours would be evidence of a tired cat.

On the other hand, if I had a whole room full of cats with weeks-worth of behavioral observations, pointed at the same cat sleeping in the corner and said, "That's the laziest cat in this group and here are the charts to prove it, including the last four hours where it has hardly moved" then I wouldn't be expressing bias at all. What I want to believe about the cat doesn't even enter the conversation.

You use confirmation bias in place of the evidence that the rest of us require in order to believe your assertion. I can point to scripture that confirms my bias, I can also point to scripture that rejects it, but evidence will change my mind in a heartbeat. My bias will always take a backseat to anything you have evidence for, unlike you, who makes evidence out of bias.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
So, when we talk about

So, when we talk about confirmation bias in psychology, we are not talking about your beliefs and assertions necessarily. We are talking about the tendency to seek out confirmation and ignore things that would disprove those assertions. I think the term comes from a researcher that told participants he had a rule for generating numbers, and asked participants to figure it out by listing three numbers, and he'll give feedback. The interesting thing is that once participants thought they knew the rule, they began looking for evidence of it. For example, (1,2,3) (5,6,7) (40,41,42) (87,88,89). If they thought the rule was any three consecutive number, they kept saying consecutive numbers, and kept getting confirmation.

However, the actual rule was something like "any three numbers, each larger than the last." So, the best approach for the participants would have been to test other possible rules, once their hunch was accepted. If (1,2,3) works, then try (3,2,1) or (1,5,10).

So yes, I do think I understand confirmation bias; and no I'm not using it in place of evidence. I think that if an atheist thinks the Bible is wrong or evil, they will read it looking for things that confirm that it is wrong or evil. Which means they spent little time just reading it normally, or looking for good. Which means they'll have a hard time listing 3 good things about it here. It won't come naturally to them.

So I don't care about evidence here, I care about what you've read that you agreed with, or thought was good.

Kataclismic's picture
Well, I suppose I was

Well, I suppose I was speaking about specific biases: yours and mine, not so much in the general sense. But I'll play your little game;

I like a bit of Exodus. The most famous bits I suppose.
Exodus 14:
21 And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
30 Thus the Lord saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore.

I like the story of Job, for obvious reasons.
Job 42:
12 So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning: for he had fourteen thousand sheep, and six thousand camels, and a thousand yoke of oxen, and a thousand she asses.
17 So Job died, being old and full of days.

And there are some scriptures in Revelation that I like, not limited to these:
Revelation 6:
9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?
11 And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.

So now tell me, John. Why do you care?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
"So now tell me, John. Why do

"So now tell me, John. Why do you care?"

I don't have any deep reasons. I was just curious.

Kataclismic's picture
So rather than point out that

So rather than point out that you failed to prove your position you will proclaim you had no intentions whatsoever? This is where you exhibit your own confirmation bias in the form that I am so used to.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
What was my position that I

What was my position that I failed to prove?

Kataclismic's picture
I believe many atheists,

I believe many atheists, regardless if they were once Christian, simply look for things they disagree with, or hope to disagree with. They don't read the Bible for themselves. They read what others tell them is wrong about it.

Well that was in your OP, John. If that isn't your position then you should update it ... or admit you are biased. Either way, but telling me that you don't know your own position doesn't make much sense when you can read it yourself. I know I'm wasting my time though, nothing is sinking in is it?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Right, but there was a

Right, but there was a disconnect in your questions. You asked me why I cared, and then called me dishonest for saying I don't really care. I'm not trying to prove anything. I stated what my belief was, and am looking forward to having that belief changed.

You already stated your three positives, so what are you complaining about?

Kataclismic's picture
No, this is where your bias

No, this is where your bias comes in. I know you don't *care*, the inclination was in the original post. It's a bit childish to say that you weren't out to prove something and I've just taken offense because you don't care. When I say "Why do you care?" it is bending the rules for asking for your objective results, granted, but no less the conclusion you should have made. Having no conclusion for data that doesn't fit your bias is called confirmation bias.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I'm not sure what sort of

I'm not sure what sort of conclusion you're wanting.

Kataclismic's picture
Turn it back on me? Are you

Turn it back on me? Are you confused about your position to either present one or not?

Sheldon's picture
"So, when we talk about

"So, when we talk about confirmation bias in psychology, we are not talking about your beliefs and assertions necessarily. We are talking about the tendency to seek out confirmation and ignore things that would disprove those assertions."

Do you remember doing exactly this for page after page of one of your many threads claiming to be about slavery, but refusing to even respond to the fact that biblical passages endorse slavery quite specifically, then just as you have said here, you sought out a passage claiming kidnap was wrong and insisted it denounced slavery? If that's not confirmation and selection bias i don't know what is.

CyberLN's picture
John, you wrote, “I would

John, you wrote, “I would like each of you to tell me three things that you believe the Bible does right, and then three positive things about Christianity.
This should be difficult or perhaps impossible if you are heavily based.”

Does this mean if I listed those six things and followed it with, “on the whole, I think both xtianity and the bible are damaging,” would you consider it unbiased?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
No, if on the whole you think

No, if on the whole you think the bad outweighs the good, that's fine. Although I would find it redundant, since I already assume everyone here thinks that.

CyberLN's picture
Then why do this

Then why do this “confirmation bias check” of yours?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
As I mentioned in the OP: "I

As I mentioned in the OP: "I believe many atheists, regardless if they were once Christian, simply look for things they disagree with, or hope to disagree with."

I want to see who this applies to and who it doesn't. Perhaps it might even get those who don't know they're doing it, to see that they are.


Donating = Loving

Heart Icon

Bringing you atheist articles and building active godless communities takes hundreds of hours and resources each month. If you find any joy or stimulation at Atheist Republic, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.

Or make a one-time donation in any amount.