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Just visiting and asking. What does a Humanist believe about…


Forums Forums Humanism Just visiting and asking. What does a Humanist believe about…

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 73 total)
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  • #333831
    @mriana
    Keymaster

    @lausten

    I think you wanted a certain answer and didn’t get it and didn’t how to handle the answers you got.

    That’s what I was thinking too, that’s why I told him he might be going at it backwards. He’s already came here with the answers (or so he thought) and found out those weren’t the answer. Even science knows this is backwards.

    #333838
    @widdershins
    Participant

    I believe that your intention was pure, but you did apparently come in with some preconceived notions.  But that may have been the language barrier.  I gather English is not your first language.  When you type, there’s no accent, so we don’t often pick up on that right away.  We often tend to assume that you are probably just the typical lazy and inarticulate American who is slapping the keyboard and expecting us to make sense of it.  When we actually realize that English isn’t your first language we tend to be a little more patient, though.

    You will find that people will only treat you as “the enemy” as long as they believe you might be.  You have no idea how many times we’ve been asked loaded questions, or some Christian has tried to “trick us” into admitting that they’re right be leading the entire conversation, giving just a little at a time so that we don’t see the whole picture until we’ve answered the last of their questions, allowing them to take our answers out of context and say, “Aha!”  It’s what we expect until we see otherwise, as I’m sure it’s what those in Christian forums expect from us until they see otherwise.

    Many of us, myself included, would be happy to answer your questions.  But you have to word them as a question.  A question MUST be concise and to the point and completely separate from any assertions.  Your first “question” was a paragraph of assertions with a question mark or two thrown in.  A question should be a single sentence, which should come after all the assertions and the question “setup”.  Only clarification should come after the question.

    Oh. I do not believe in magic. There is not such thing.

    All Christians believe in magic.  You just call them “miracles” instead.  There is no functional difference between magic and miracle.  And it intrigues me that you don’t believe in magic.  Being Christian you must be aware of the Biblical story of Moses turning the staff into a snake (a miracle) after Pharaoh’s magician did it (magic).  I don’t know that I’ve ever heard of a Christian who didn’t believe that “magic” was real, but evil, completely unaware that miracles fall firmly within the definition of magic.

    #333858
    @timb
    Participant

    I know that I was way too wordy, when I started posting on the CFI format years ago.  Sometimes I may still be.  But sometimes I have the most excellent concise posts that convey just the points that I wish with the brevity but clarity that would make Occam’s Razor superfluous.

    So I’m saying you can learn the skill of saying what you want to say in as few words as possible, if you work at it. This is a good place to learn that skill.

    As far as Clhjr goes, I wonder if he feels threatened by humanists.  He shouldn’t. Humanists will be among the last to suppress people due to their beliefs, unless you consider honesty to be a suppressant of beliefs.

    #333859
    @write4u
    Participant

    clhjr said: What is the eventual ground upon which you would argue your case except the fact that today, “I am.”

    We can begin by admitting that “you are” a biome consisting of 10% human cells and 90% bacterial cells. You are a natural dynamic complex system,  just like earth.

    But what is the eventual ground upon which you would argue the case that today God is claiming, “I am that I am”? How do you know He said that?

    Have you ever been anesthetized?  You cease to exist, but you don’t know it. The “you” has disappeared. Except for your interoception, for all intents and purposes you are dead. Of course they bring you back, which is possible due to your interoceptive functions which maintained homeostasis (kept you alive) while you “were away”. When that shuts down there is no “coming back” or “going somewhere”, but you wouldn’t know it,  YOU will have  have disappeared.

    And, since some humanist and Christians see the theist (praying and providence) and the humanist (a la the manifesto) in a pitched battle with little common ground, the questions seem quite natural.  They are even childlike, but for that very reason, ground level.

    question: Christians are not theists?

    question: Humanist manifesto is childlike?

    question: If you want to avoid a pitched battle,  what are you doing here arguing your case?

    question: If I walk into a church and declare that “I am” but “God is Not”,  should I expect coffee and cookies to celebrate our maturity?

     

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Write4U.
    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Write4U.
    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Write4U.
    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Write4U.
    #333862
    @write4u
    Participant

    timb said; As far as Clhjr goes, I wonder if he feels threatened by humanists.  He shouldn’t. Humanists will be among the last to suppress people due to their beliefs, unless you consider honesty to be a suppressant of beliefs.

    I have never heard of a humanist (or an atheist) going to war because God told them it was a good idea.

    #333873

    @ clhjr
    If you read this whole thing.

    clhjr, you know that knife cuts two ways.

    Did you spent any time reading what others took the time to write, in good faith responses to your queries?

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    ps. clhjr did you say you wanted to go deeper???

    That is why I’m sharing this comment that I originally penned for a discussion over at Center For Inquiry’s Forum.  It belongs here (at Cc.blogspot) since a better understanding of the difference between religious thinking and serious scientific thinking is worth trying to push into the public consciousness!

    The challenge here is clarifying the key difference between Religious Thinking and Scientific Thinking.

    https://citizenschallenge.blogspot.com/2019/09/religious-thinking-v-scientific-thinking.html

     

    https://citizenschallenge.blogspot.com/2020/03/earth-centrism-geocentrism-seriously.html.

    Yes, I would claim scientific thinking is humanist thinking

    #333875

     

     

    https  :  //citizenschallenge – blogspot – com/2018/08/key-to-nonoverlapping-magisterium – html

    … Specifically, the Magisteria of Physical Reality vs the Magisteria of our Human Mindscape.

    In this perspective we acknowledge that Earth and her physical processes and the pageant of evolution are the fundamental timeless touchstones of reality.

    Part of Earth’s physical reality is that we humans were created by Earth out of her processes.  Science shows us that we belong to the mammalian branch of Earth’s animal kingdom.

    Yet, it’s undeniable that something quite unique happened about six million years ago when certain apes took a wild improbable evolutionary turn.

    By and by besides the marvel of our two hands, we developed two feet and legs that could stand tall or run for hours and a brain that learned rapidly. During that evolutionary process something extraordinary fantastical was born, the Human Mindscape.

    On the outside hominids learned to make tools, hunt, fish, and select plants, plus they mastered fire for cooking and better living.

    On the inside our brains were benefiting from the new super nourishment while human curiosity and adventures started filling and stretching our mindscapes with experiences and knowledge beyond anything the “natural” physical Earth ever knew.

    While the human mind and spirit are ineffable mysteries, they are also of tremendous consequence and real-world physical power. They drove our growing ability to study and manipulate our world, to communicate and record our experiences and to formulate explanations for a world full of mysteries, threats and wonders.

    People learned to think and gossip and paint pictures upon the canvas of cave walls, and even better, upon the canvas of each other’s imaginations. We’ve been adding to our brain’s awareness and complexity ever since.

    Of course, while all this was going on the human mind was also wondering about the ‘Why’ of the world it observed and the difficult, fragile, short lives we were allotted. In seeking answers to unknowable questions it seems inevitable that Gods would inhabit our mindscape. I suspect inspired by buried memories of being coddled within mom’s protective loving bosom those first couple years of life.

    No doubt these “Gods” enabled further successes, though not through super-natural interventions, but rather through their ability to form, conform, reform and transform the mindscapes of the masses of people beginning to congregate. Thus, combining pragmatic civil societal needs with universally felt, but keenly personal questions, fears, and dreams.

    After the middle ages tribal stories, accepted ancient doctrines and religious “truths” were no longer enough to satisfy our mindscape’s growing desire for ever more understanding and power over the Earth. The human brain took another tremendous leap forward in awareness with the Intellectual Enlightenment and the birth of serious disciplined scientific study.

    Science’s success was dazzling in its ability to learn about, control and manipulate Earth’s physical resources and to transform entire environments.

    Science was so successful that today most people believe we are the masters of our world and most have fallen into the hubristic trap of believing our ever fertile mindscape is “reality.”

    Which brings me back to Gould’s magisterium and his missing key. …

    #333877
    @widdershins
    Participant

    Humanists will be among the last to suppress people due to their beliefs…

    Thanks for pointing that part out write.  I have always said that the moment the government makes religion illegal I’ll take up arms right alongside my theist brothers and sisters to fight to get their right to belief back for them.  But it strikes me that these are the very people fighting against my rights to not be religious every day.

    But I know why that is.  They have been the majority, able to strong arm anyone who disagreed with them for literal centuries, in some cases literally murdering people horribly with impunity.  And they’re losing their power, one power at a time.  They haven’t been able to murder people for some time now.  In the ’60s they lost the power to subject all children to their Bible teachings and prayers.  In the ’80s they lost the ability to teach magic as science.  Then more recently they lost the power to prevent gays from marrying.  And they’re still fighting to get all but one of those powers back.  Whenever people are given a right they always should have had to be protected from the majority there is a push back from that majority, who ignorantly feels that something has been taken from them.

    The religious right didn’t see gay marriage for what it is, a right being given to gays.  They saw it as a right being taken away from them.  They still do.  They can’t name the right they lost because there isn’t one.  But dammit, they’re still sure they lost one!  And the rate at which non-Christians are gaining rights they should have had all along is increasing.  The country is becoming more progressive.  So these people are always angry and always afraid of who the government is going to tell them they can’t oppress next.  But they don’t see it as oppression.  Because the oppressors never do.  So they push back by trying to oppress all of their old nemeses as much as the law will allow for as long as they can because in their minds they are fighting “evil”.  So yeah, they don’t give a squat about my rights or my happiness because oppressors never do care about those they oppress.  But I’d still fight for their rights.  Granted, I’d point and snicker a bit first.  Rub it in their faces a little bit.  I’d totally be a dick about it.  But then I’d fight for them.

    #333881
    @clhjr
    Participant

    Hey @timb


    @timb
    I know that saying to “fear God” is a sick concept makes perfect sense within your logic system and I am sure that having a reveretial awe of God would be inconvenient and uncomfortable for you at the moment. However, to say that it is sick is a bit unnecessary upon literally multiplied millions (maybe billions) of the planet’s inhabitants, some of them have been some of the brightest lights that have walked among us in all fields. I was talking to a friend of mine that worked at as an engineer (not a physicist) at the FERME pariticle collider. He said that few, if any of the physicists were willing to say there is no God. They did not mean God was a Christian God, but that reality was so extraordinarily weird below the surface where we live that a god seemed more plausible. A god who determines, arranges and expresses. If this god is understood as just a part of the system, we are still just its slaves and we are all part of the machine. What is truth? Why care?

    Your next comment that “God” is a construct of human imaginations is a much more historically grounded idea in philosophy and religious thought. Many of the enlightenment thinkers, even Greek/roman thinkers and before thought of god(s) as either an idealized version of the self or some heroic idea of man. That is quite common even today among some in academia. One has said that “God is man in his infinitude and man is God in his finiteness.” That probably would be close to the idea that progressive Christianity adheres to which allows them to embrace pretty much a Roussarian view of culture, the state, morality, and discovering new revelation that serves today’s community which would, of course, conflict with each generation because it is the word that each generation “feel’s it needs. But, what if God can speak and is not silent?

    I would like to know more about what you mean by “finding meaning in my very small way” and “promoting truth”. What is the truth? Where is it found? How do you know it is the truth when you find it? What do you measure it by? By, “promoting truth”, do you mean persuasion and winning minds and hearts in a free and open society where all voices are free or do you mean by laws and force to keep other voices out of the market place, the schools, the government?

    And, I think that gets closer to what I was asking in the first place.
    I tried to say, and it should be easy to understand,  I think I understand the grounds, I just wanted to hear how humanists stated it with their own mind and thoughts.  There is value in that.

    thanks.

    #333882
    @clhjr
    Participant

    Well, you are right i did not get the answer exactly that i was looking for, but i take almost all the responsibility for that with such a clumsy introductory beginning.  And, I was wearing all my notions and thinking of one stereotypical straw man that i was seeking an answer from.

    It has nothing to do with being overwhelmed with such brilliance that I am dazzled off the stage and wonder where to find my bearings.   If that is what you mean?  Maybe it is not.  I think I probably should be in a library doing research.   I did completely write forgetting that i was stepping into someone’s home filled with people who are sensitive, diverse, and find comfort and stimulation here.
    I am quite  aware of the intellectual/philosophical divide between us, but  I was not prepared for the suspicion, the immediate assumptions, depth of animosity, and the fearful concern of my motives was a surprise.

    I don’t know why because I quit going to forums years and years ago (I am an older man now) because actual conversation in any forum that is based on worldviews is difficult and brings too much prejudice, bias, suspicion, and fear.   I forgot that when I got this quick, manic idea to join a humanist forum and ask questions.

    #333883
    @clhjr
    Participant

    Thank you for being willing to fight for the rights of everyone, even those who you disagree with.  You may get to prove that one day. However, I must ask one question.  We are not asking for the right to simply to believe, but to practice and express freely, to assemble as we see fit.  Those are all rights that are believed to be inalienable for humans to be fully human.

    I did express support for the homosexual constitutional and legal  right to get married.  It is undeniable that the constitution allows for the rights of all citizens to be protected.  That does create a muddle and an opportunity for all of us to grow towards.

    You are correct that it did not take a “right” away from me, but some of us were exactly right that homosexual marriage was not even the toe in the door of what was already prepared to drop on our culture under the umbrella of new gender understandings and its fluidity which is not science in the strictest sense, but simple observational and felt need based behaviors encouraged by a completely ready to roll out educational package to complete the indoctrination.  You may not have known what was going on, but those who were planning and shaping the future of our culture and educational system, the certainly knew.

    A couple of people have decried the church’s power over culture.  Well that was true at one time to a large extent simply because most people, whether they were Christians or not bought into the overall worldview.  Today, due to the hard, continuous decades long work of humanists (and associates) driven thinkers, that tide has changed.  I know you do not think that Christians designed the sexual policies that have been unfolded in our schools over the last decade.  So, you do have the power.  Not us.  Sure, we scream from the edges and wherever we can, but you have the levers of power at some of the most important institutional points.

    And, I want to say that is as it should be.  I want to be heard, but we share the same planet, the same air, the same communities, so we have an opportunity to try to break our the normal cycle of human power struggles.  Maybe we can work to invent genuine diversity where all can live and express their views and lives as they wish.  that is messy and untried.

    If we just rearrange the chairs around the table…if we just move the outs to power chairs and the ins to the marginal chairs, if we just crush the old old regime of deplorables and install the new enlightened ones, all we have done is what humans have done from the beginning.  just force and power.  The victims pull down the building and erect a new hegemony.   If we are going to have real diversity, it is time to try it.  that means that groups that haven’t yet stepped forward out of the closet get their protection and the wedding cake maker can consider his job an expression of his faith.   (yes, I am referring to that celebrated case).  But, that is the only way to have diversity and mean it instead of simply a slogan for a power grab.  We have to move beyond what economics and technology limited us to in the past.

    #333884
    @3point14rat
    Participant

    Hey, Chuck, stick around, you won’t regret it. We were all new here once and I still feel like ‘the new guy’ even though my first post was two years ago. A bunch of these people are brilliant, but they’re also great at getting their point across, so it’s accessible brilliance that I guarantee you’ll benefit from.

    There’s no way you will learn on your own a fraction of what you’ll learn here. Even if you only study Mriana’s posts back on page one you will be way ahead of where you’d be if you try to learn on your own.

    Post what you think and respond to our posts honestly and I have no doubt that we’ll all get along even if we don’t agree on everything.

     

    #333889
    @timb
    Participant

    Thanks for replying to me directly.  You said:

    …I am sure that having a reveretial awe of God would be inconvenient and uncomfortable for you at the moment. However, to say that it is sick is a bit unnecessary upon literally multiplied millions (maybe billions) of the planet’s inhabitants, some of them have been some of the brightest lights that have walked among us in all fields.

    However, if you want to argue, then argue against what I actually said.  I did not assert that every God believer ever was/is sick.

    I said “Fearing God” is a sick concept from my perspective.  You may find joy in it.  To me, it would be totally icky. “God” is a construct of human cognitions.  Being somehow roped in to fearing that concept, as if it were real, feels disgusting to me.

    Sure many God believers are wonderful people, now and historically.  But note that many of our most illustrious forefathers were slave owners despite the sick and disgusting nature of that choice. I think that god-believers can, like atheists, be good or bad people. But I think that they (the god-believers) are either ignorant or are intellectually dishonest.  I think it is the intellectual dishonesty that feels so icky and disgusting to me. 

    You further ask “But, what if God can speak and is not silent?”  Of course, to me, that is a very silly question, like “What if Bigfoot is a descendant of ancient Wookies?”

    So in regards to your questions like, “What is the truth?” “Where is it found?” “How do you know it is the truth when you find it?” “What do you measure it by?” “How do you find it?”

    Truth is what is currently most consistent with all of the evidence that we have. It is found where it is, amongst the many lies that oppose it. You know that it is our best understanding of what is true by the great preponderance of actual evidence (not made up evidence). To me, the truth, in and of itself, feels good and right, even when it may also be horribly sad, or alarming or frightening. Then you further ask:

    By, “promoting truth”, do you mean persuasion and winning minds and hearts in a free and open society where all voices are free or do you mean by laws and force to keep other voices out of the market place, the schools, the government?

    I promote truth by declaring it as I see it, and by opposing lies.  That being said, I do want to live in a free and open society where there is freedom of expression.  However, I believe that our schools and government should NOT be agencies of passing on religiosity, or any of the many religions of the world.  Our public schools and government should be secular, for ALL of the people.  Be free with your religions, elsewhere, outside of public schools and governmental agencies.

    You can believe any damn fool thing you want, and you can persuade and win hearts and minds into believing your superstitious lies all you want. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

    I am sorry that you are upset that people are now closer to being able to love the person that they want, and to safely experience sexuality in their lives in the manner that is consistent with their true feelings.  All of the letters “LBGTQXYZ” can be confusing, but that’s their lives.  Not mine.  Not yours.  And should NOT be the purview of some ancient religious dogma. All of the different batty religions are protected in our society, why shouldn’t all the various sexual kinkiness be?  One’s sexuality goes to the heart of what it is to be human.  Let the weirdos be. They are not trying to suppress whatever superstitious nonsense that you are proposing to the world.

    #333890

    Your next comment that “God” is a construct of human imaginations is a much more historically grounded idea in philosophy and religious thought …

    Nonsense!  It’s an inevitable part of the march of evolution!

    #333955
    @widdershins
    Participant

    I was talking to a friend of mine that worked at as an engineer (not a physicist) at the FERME pariticle collider. He said that few, if any of the physicists were willing to say there is no God. They did not mean God was a Christian God, but that reality was so extraordinarily weird below the surface where we live that a god seemed more plausible.

    That is a really misleading statement.  Many atheists and humanists will not say that there is no god, myself included.  I believe that there are no gods, but I can’t prove that so I’m not going to make that claim, I’m going to state it as my belief.  This statement seeks to lead the reader to believe that these physicists know something about the universe which suggests that there might be a god behind it, even outright stating that knowing so much about the universe makes a god “seem more plausible”.  This is simply not true.  They are likely refusing to state belief as fact.

    Let me explain.  I know that there are no gods in the same way that I know that there are no fairies or monsters.  I can’t prove any of that.  Fairies that don’t exist aren’t around to leave proof that they don’t exist lying around.  But I am still comfortable stating as fact that there are no fairies because unless your beliefs are really, really outside of societal norms you almost certainly agree with me and I do not have to defend my assertion of my belief that fairies don’t exist as fact.  When it comes to gods, however, especially the Judeo-Christian God, I have no such expectations from societal norms.  In fact it is actually more likely that you will challenge my assertion and ask for evidence.  I know it’s not a fact, it’s a belief, so I don’t state with any authority that there are no gods.

    And I really hate the absolute myth that science can tell us anything or give us any evidence of anything supernatural.  That is absolutely not true.  Science is the study of the natural world.  By definition the “super”natural is outside of science.  You can’t spend a lifetime studying butterflies to learn all there is to know about rocks.  You can’t learn anything about rocks by studying “not rocks”.  Likewise you can’t learn anything about the supernatural by studying the natural.  The idea that science can tell us anything about god is unequivocally and definitively false.  That is not my belief, that is fact.  A god would have to make himself available to be studied and we would have to create a new branch of study besides the study of the natural to study such a supernatural being.

    Besides that, there is no context whatsoever in that statement.  They “would not say that there was no God”.  Why would they not say that?  In what conversation did it come up?  Did they just walk up to your friend, one by one over the weeks, and say, “Just between you an me, I will not say that there is no god”?  Very unlikely they simply volunteered this unasked.  So were they asked if they would say that there was no god?  Who asked them and how?  Did your friend ask them?  Because then they’re just avoiding yet another unwelcome conversation with your asshat friend who won’t stop preaching to everyone at work.  Or was there a survey?  How was the question worded?  You can get very different outcomes from the same survey by just changing how the question is asked.  And how do I know this is even true?  Because you said that your friend said that they said it?  When I was Pentecostal I can’t tell you how many father’s brother’s nephew’s cousin’s former roommates actually witnessed a miracle firsthand.  But nobody ever saw one themselves.  They always knew someone who knew someone who heard of someone who knew someone who saw it.

    The claim is even more dubious when you realize that there is no “FERME collider”.   There WAS a collider at Fermilab which shut down in 2011.  So how old is this information?  Old enough that you at least don’t remember the actual name of the place.  By using all capitol letters you suggest that’s an acronym, but it’s not, it’s just spelled wrong and missing a few letters.  And it’s a famous place.  They had the largest collider until 2008 when the LHC was built.  Everyone has at least heard of Fermilab.  But you actually knew someone who worked there and couldn’t remember the name?  By “friend” did you mean “guy I talked to a couple of times on the Internet”?  At the very least your memory of the incident has some serious holes in it.

    I don’t mean to rip into your every post.  It’s not about “getting you”.  It’s about objective truth.  I can’t let an untrue or misleading statement go by unchallenged.  And you still give me serious reason to doubt your sincerity.  I would suspect you, yourself, subconsciously elevated this last statement to some kind of importance that it really didn’t have in the real world.  Or your friend did.  But if was as significant a thing as you made it out to be, if these physicists really did see something in the data which made them doubt the nonexistence of some god (which would be “evidence that some god exists”) then you’re going to have to back that claim up with some data.

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