just a note, from personal experience, that if people are dumb enough to close themselves to reality, it is a lost cause to reason with them, unless they magically change their worldview
Choosing to subscribe to this topic will automatically register you for email notifications for comments and updates on this thread.
Email notifications will be sent out daily by default unless specified otherwise on your account which you can edit by going to your userpage here and clicking on the subscriptions tab.
That feels a bit harsh since most have been indoctrinated like me and don't realize how closed their minds are --I know some very smart indoctrinated people.
it might be. people i know face to face choose to live in said indoctrination, though. If they are not willing to acknowledge their biases and adopt an open mind, i see no point in discussion
I agree some people are happy the way they are and are mentally damaged beyond repair.
Imagine a child which is happy believing father Christmas exists and his brain is damaged to the point of not being capable of getting new information on that subject.
That is usually a theist.
I tried to push theists to the point of forcing them to answer why they do not doubt god.
You have to push them really hard and they must be smart enough to handle such a question with a level of maturity.
You know what they say?
That they cannot even imagine doing that, they just cannot think about that subject, because if they do, it would mean they do not believe.
Their brain is just frozen at the point.
It sounds unbelievable and I am always left speechless after their answer and end up repeating myself and ask again:
But why can't you try to question it?
How can you believe something without questioning it first?
The discussion usually ends here.
Theists are mentally damaged and they do not know it.
Some can return to reason, most are just a hopeless case.
It has nothing to do with knowledge and smartness.
BTW only the smart ones will actually tell you something and allow you to push them that far.
Just last night was trying to reason with my uncle about why he thinks gays should not be allowed to adopt orphaned children.
This would not even be a discussed topic if it wasn't for their mental damage.
It really makes them think they are superior to different people, racist like mentality.
They would prefer for a child to not experience the love that only a parent can give rather then letting gays have equal rights.
My reaction was:
"Aren't you ashamed of yourself to argue against equal rights for all human beings?"
And so it goes, repeatedly and unchecked, with indoctrination, with forcing people into a religion, and otherwise. It's like trying to stop a train that has windows so dark tinted that the conductor can't tell it's going.
Sometimes it is a matter of waiting until s/he is listening. When they say they're "having doubts", for instance.
I would ask them to define their god and detail exactly what they do believe. That can unmask some of their delusion for them and get them to understand why they thought such superstition important.
Hit them while their weak. A very devious strategy.
Hi TRO. What strategy? That indicates your thinking, not mine. I don't want to "hit" anyone. It wouldn't occur to me.
It is just common sense. Nagging doesn't help and confrontation isn't an aim. If a religionist says they have no doubts it might seem rude to press the point. That's all.
Hit them while their weak. A very devious strategy.
What is this, a glitch?
yep a bug
"Hit them while they are weak" is a very common strategy we use everyday on all subjects.
Not devious but practical.
Christians use it every single time they posssibly can.
Did you ever hear at a funeral phrases of this sort?
He/She is in a better place.
never missing a chance to give false hope do they?
Are they devious?
Not really just reflecting their thoughts and try to spread their consolation.
If someone is in doubt of their fate is enough on it's own to de-convert.
It has to to with how much time it will take for it to happen where your help will matter.
It is not easy for a believer to have doubts, once it happens it is a downhill slope to reach sanity though.
Thanks for the clarification, JVL. I entirely agree.
Like TheRandomOne, I too doubt the value of discussing religion/atheism with those of "strong (religious) faith". On the Internet I find it hard to tell them from trolls.
Religious faith is superstition and just wrong (and possibly dangerous). It makes sense to have rational faith, such as that a bridge will support you while you cross it. Religious faith often needs to be contradicted and confronted whenever appropriate though.
And as I said (in my post, The problem of "Original Sin" or the problem of "First Fault"?), the Bible, being most (Christian) theists first and last line of defence, I feel it safe to say that using such a vauge and contradicting piece of "literature" to prove a point about God is like trying to use a foggy stained glass window to prove there's a tree in your front yard.
Yea I agree with helping when you see people are having doubts and troubled on that subject.
Though I am a firm anti-theists, I do not give a dam if some religious person gets offended at all.
I don't agree that if they have no doubts I should not pressure, actually I pressure even more if they say half a word about god did this and that.
My blood starts to pump faster when they spread poison as if they are doing a good deed.
And lets be practical here, theists are not humble and do not keep their nonsense to themselves.
They are usually evangelical and love to show off how good Christians they are.
I feel it is my duty to put those egotistical hypocritical assholes in their place if I am in a position to do so.
No I wont go in the church doing it.
But if we are having dinner and expect me to pray with you, then expect me to say in your face "I am sorry I do not believe in father Christmas anymore. err.. sorry god anymore."
I am very outspoken about keeping their nonsense to themselves and poor the guy who starts an argument on it with me because he thinks I require god's help.
NO definitely NOT, challenge those with deep faith if given the correct opportunity to do so.
It won't convince anybody probably, but it does show them that there are people who disagree with the notion that god is love.
Sometimes that on it's own does make a crack in the dam.
Maybe with enough cracks the dam will fall or at least realize that their faith is not so rock solid as they wish it is.
I find it very refreshing seeing the frustration in their eyes when they cannot find a way to show me that their god loves me in practice.
I live in a country which is 98% Catholic Christians so I have a lot of refreshing moments :)
I know I will not get elected lol.
"Religious faith is superstition and just wrong (and possibly dangerous)"
yep but also the theistic one is immoral and evil.
I loled at the "father christmas" part. Also, I agree with you 100,526,765%.
Jeff, "good Christians" is an oxymoron in most cases :)
yea, apparently most of them know there are bad Christians all over the place :P
It's the role of the evangelical to slip their hands into people's pockets and try to wring out their time and money. It's our job as rational people to fit people's pockets with rat traps. Those really nasty ones with the steel springs and jagged bars instead of those wimpy ones they use for regular mice.
We cannot be silent but open and inform people about the huge practice of fraud.
That robs people from their money, freedom and most importantly sanity.
Unfortunately, with were I live, me (or any atheist for that matter) taking a course of action similar in meaning to that described above would lead to being arrested on charges of disturbing the peace.
What kind of actions are you imagining?
I am saying that one should let know his views on money crunching organizations where he can.
I am totally fine seeing Christians getting scammed.
Maybe that would teach them. :)
What I am not fine is asking everyone to pay for a fuken cross in the town square or something.
I agree with the fact that religion robs people of their sanity. Honestly theists are like children in the belief of fairy tales and santa. They want it to be true, they were raised told it was true, and are told they are "bad" if they believe differently. I cant blame them because it is fear that keeps them in their belief of a god. its conditioning people into not questioning things.
for example: if someone walked into a bank with their hand in their pocket and yelled "i have a gun", 90% of people would believe they did. hands up, heads down, no questions asked. but that 10%? they are the ones who are brave enough to question. to challenge fear.
you may not be able to prove they have no gun, but they cannot prove that they actually do. and no matter how hard you try to tell them there is no threat, most people have a natural instinct that grabs onto fear. when in reality, the gun (hell) is just a hand in a pocket wanting control and money.
it is very hard to argue with a theist due to fear. and i hate how religion robs people of a little chunk of sanity. because once you take it, it grows bigger.
I like to see how strong their convictions are before I wade in - the firmer they are, the more I'm likely to give it a go. I know there’s no hope of making a dent but it should make for an entertaining 15 minutes.
I once asked a christian acquaintance to name a time that god had concretely impacted his life. He told me of a trip to the supermarket where he only had 32 pence. He decided to buy an apple and upon weighing it he found it cost exactly 32 pence. In all seriousness he said "God guided me to the right apple."
I sat there with my jaw on the floor. I’d learnt the true meaning of 'dumbfounded'.
I did manage to “convert” a friend a few years ago. She was what I call a ‘soft’ theist i.e. she was brought up a christian but it didn’t really play a major role in her life. We spent a couple of hours talking, at the end which she said “why on earth did I believe all that crap.”
A very rare case, that friend of yours. As fr the super market tale, I wonder what would have happened if said Apple had turned out to be rotten.
While some cannot be reasoned with at all, some can. And we can learn how to talk to them in an effective way. I cannot recommend this book enough: A manual for creating atheists, by Peter Boghossian.
The title almost kept me from reading it, but he has some great tips on how to speak to religious people, in a non-threatening but still effective way. In short, by targeting the process they use to come to the conclusion that their beliefs are true, their faith. Instead of targeting their religion, since it is much more, a social network, traditions, etc. Their religious "proofs" can be debated forever with them continuously moving the goalpost.
By just asking them how they have come to their conclusions, they cannot connect the dots. Because there is no way to know what they claim to know.