# What does atheism offer?

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This question comes up somewhat often on religion boards. Personally, I think it's rather irrelevant as truth does not depend upon whether or not it benefits you. However, this question can, imo, be given a satisfactory answer.

Atheism offers the same thing theism offers; an response to a metaphysical proposition. Neither offer any more or any less.

Neither offer hope, freedom, love, morality, etc. Neither offer a framework for belief; They only offer a metaphysical proposition that informs a framework that the (a)theist may adopt. Everything else are just add-ons that depend on the person and further clarification of their belief. You can't tell anything about a theist's beliefs, other than that they believe in one or more deities, by only knowing that they are a theist. Similarly, you can't know anything about what an atheist believes, other than that they do not believe that one or more deities exist, by knowing only that they are an atheist. To suggest otherwise is intellectually dishonest.

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Peace of mind when at sea.

Atheism also gives me the freedom to decide for myself about morality. I don't need to take someone's word for it that people who eat shellfish are evil. In the same way, it would be difficult for an

Prove it.               But yes, smartass'yness aside, I agree, but I would also add that when your claim is disputed (by more than one poster,a s you saw) then the burden of proof is even dou

I read your question a bit like this... this is how I perceive it: "What does lack of believe in Poseidon offer?"

I agree with you that what something offers or how it benefits people are completely irrelevant to its truth value, but I wonder if those people asking this question might instead mean to refer to humanism instead of atheism.

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What does lack of believe in Poseidon offer?

Peace of mind when at sea.

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What does atheism offer?

A feeling of mental superiority with which true believers can bash the heathen unbelievers over the head with! (but their thick skulls protect their beliefs from any change via this method).

I think it offers resistance to wide-scale manipulation by religious leaders. It saves money on tithes. It discourages complacency based on unsubstantiated stories of an afterlife and of an all-powerful god directing things anyways, where the occasional theist will sit around praying instead of getting off their ass and doing something positive. It encourages trying to understand why things happen rather than explaining them away as the workings of a powerful being.

I think that to clarify your question, you want to say rather than simple atheism, someone who has thought about religion thoroughly and settled upon atheism. Atheism on its own could just mean that someone lived completely under a rock and never considered or was told about supernatural beings.

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Humans are the only creatures on earth that have religion. The rest of the critters, including bacteria are atheists. Religion separates humans from animals and puts man into a unique category. Atheism connects humans backwards to the animals, since animals don't have religion.

A belief in god requires cognitive skills detached from the sensory systems; imagination. The atheists have shown, god can't be proven via the sensory systems. To manipulate religious concepts cognitively, without any direct sensory input, requires the use of the language, words and concepts. Animals lack such a complex language system and therefore can not do the god thing. By default they are atheists.

Animals can do the atheist thing using their sensory systems, cause and effect, and empirical evidence. For example, a dog knows the sound of the door opening, at a given time of day, means the master is home. Based on data collection, the dog can eventually anticipate or predict the coming of the master, within a margin of error. But if the master starts to talk about god, this is over the dog's head, since he can't see or smell god to collect the needed data. I

If I took a statue of god to show the dog what I mean, he can see and smell that, but to him all that is a toy he wishes to play fetch with. The dog does not have that extra human specific ability to extrapolate beyond his sensory systems, into an abstraction, which itself extends beyond the limits of the sensory systems. There is nothing wrong with my atheist dog, since he is a good friend. But to discuss religion, one needs to deal with humans with that extra ability, once removed from apes. The apes are atheists.

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On a practical note, atheism means not having to get up for church on Sunday.

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Humans are the only creatures on earth that have religion.

Do you have any evidence of that?

A belief in god requires cognitive skills detached from the sensory systems; imagination.

Which animals have.

The atheists have shown, god can't be proven via the sensory systems. To manipulate religious concepts cognitively, without any direct sensory input, requires the use of the language, words and concepts. Animals lack such a complex language system and therefore can not do the god thing. By default they are atheists.

Yet animals do have language. I'd agree that the lack of complex abstract language means animals can't have organized religion, and can't tell us about it, but there is no reason they cannot believe in supernatural beings.

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Humans are the only creatures on earth that have religion.

Probably true, but as Mr Skeptic said, "there is no evidence of that".

A belief in god requires cognitive skills detached from the sensory systems; imagination. The atheists have shown, god can't be proven via the sensory systems. To manipulate religious concepts cognitively, without any direct sensory input, requires the use of the language, words and concepts. Animals lack such a complex language system and therefore can not do the god thing. By default they are atheists.

Do you know how to talk in Dog ?, horse ?, or, pig ?. You dont, so their language isnt so simple after all, isnt it ?. Anyhow, if my Chilean dog, goes to any part of the world, he has the abbility to comunicate himself perfectly and clear with any other dog from anywhere, including your dog for example. Do we (humans) have the same abbility ?. No, we cant, probably we will be able to communicate some ideas, but we can also uderstand everything exactly as the opposite. So animals , do have a complex language skill after all. Actually you dont really know what an animal thinks, so you cant affirm it with absolute certainty.

........ For example, a dog knows the sound of the door opening, at a given time of day, means the master is home.

As your dog, hears the sound of the door, maybe he thinks "here comes my slave, to feed me as ussual", " he is my slave, because he has to work his "guts off" to feed me, meanwhile I simply have to wait for him sleeping in my couch, in MY house".

..... But to discuss religion, one needs to deal with humans .........

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Humans are the only creatures on earth that have religion.

Ignoring the fact that you don't know this is true, this is irrelevant. Humans are the only ones to use thongs, too. That doesn't mean you should abandon your briefs.

The rest of the critters, including bacteria are atheists.

(a) You don't know that.

(b) You're making no sense.

Religion separates humans from animals and puts man into a unique category. Atheism connects humans backwards to the animals, since animals don't have religion.

Thongs separate humans from animals.

The ability to cook food separates animals from humans.

The tendency to invent invisible deities separates animals from humans.

So, really, you are making no sense, and you are being inconsistent. I would expect you abandon anything and everything that might "connect" you back to the "animal kingdom" and reject all natural items/behaviors for you to be close to your religion, if you were to be consistent.

And that is if I *ignore* the fact that you are making a nonsensical judgmental subjective comment about atheism.

Atheism is the lack of belief in a deity. In taht sense, Hindus are Christianity-atheists, Jews are Jesus-atheists, Christians are Poseidon-atheists. Look at the definition.

You, too, are an atheist to whatever religion you don't follow.

A belief in god requires cognitive skills detached from the sensory systems; imagination.

Actually, it requires a conviction to not separate imagination from reality. Belief means you stop asking an empirically testable question and just go with what you think/believe is right.

I have lots of imagination. I write short stories that have quite a lot of descriptions of unreal situations and creatures and people. I still don't believe in a deity. For practical sense, I'm an atheist. It has nothing to do with imagination, pioneer, it has to do with detachment from reality.

The atheists have shown, god can't be proven via the sensory systems. To manipulate religious concepts cognitively, without any direct sensory input, requires the use of the language, words and concepts.

Some would say it requires detachment from reality.

Animals lack such a complex language system and therefore can not do the god thing. By default they are atheists.

Seriously, pioneer, you're being inconsistent and quite offensive here. You don't know whether or not animals lack a complex language or not. We know a lot of species have EXTREMELY complex languages (like whales, some types of birds, etc). The are not by default anything, because you don't know it. The fact you think it doesn't make it real.

That said, let me say this: Unlike religion, which is a system that groups people together (yay for it) atheism isn't a system. "Atheists" are not banded together - sometimes that is a very bad thing, because no one is there to REALLY argue our side and work against those who wish to oppress us (and there are many).

That said, I believe atheism is a better moral stance. You heard me.

Generally speaking, a religious person follows moral rules because a powerful deity ordered them. Not following said rules means punishment in the afterlife. The religious person, therefore (and yes, I'm generalizing both groups), follows moral laws out of fear.

The atheist has nothing to fear from the afterlife, and theoretically, should have no qualms in being moral or not. However, many atheists are good people, with good morality. Their morality stems from within themselves, from eitehr consideration of social consequences or personal consequences or some self analysis or anything else -- it's a decision that is made personally, not out of fear of consequences.

As Hobbes said, it is much more moral to derive morality by reason than it is to blindly accept those rules from a higher power, be it god, the church or a pastor.

Try comparing that to animals.

~moo

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Humans are the only creatures on earth that have religion. The rest of the critters, including bacteria are atheists. Religion separates humans from animals and puts man into a unique category. Atheism connects humans backwards to the animals, since animals don't have religion. (...)

The apes are atheists.

This is a VERY DANGEROUS argument. Not invented by Pioneer, but when misused it can kill.

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Peace of mind when at sea.

Just like rest of the universe, large waves at sea don't care about your belief in poseidon either

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atheism doesn't offer anything. It does not intend to, it is simply a point of view that there are no gods.

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Consecutive posts merged
Humans are the only creatures on earth that have religion. The rest of the critters, including bacteria are atheists. Religion separates humans from animals and puts man into a unique category. Atheism connects humans backwards to the animals, since animals don't have religion.

A belief in god requires cognitive skills detached from the sensory systems; imagination. The atheists have shown, god can't be proven via the sensory systems. To manipulate religious concepts cognitively, without any direct sensory input, requires the use of the language, words and concepts. Animals lack such a complex language system and therefore can not do the god thing. By default they are atheists.

Animals can do the atheist thing using their sensory systems, cause and effect, and empirical evidence. For example, a dog knows the sound of the door opening, at a given time of day, means the master is home. Based on data collection, the dog can eventually anticipate or predict the coming of the master, within a margin of error. But if the master starts to talk about god, this is over the dog's head, since he can't see or smell god to collect the needed data. I

If I took a statue of god to show the dog what I mean, he can see and smell that, but to him all that is a toy he wishes to play fetch with. The dog does not have that extra human specific ability to extrapolate beyond his sensory systems, into an abstraction, which itself extends beyond the limits of the sensory systems. There is nothing wrong with my atheist dog, since he is a good friend. But to discuss religion, one needs to deal with humans with that extra ability, once removed from apes. The apes are atheists.

There is no proper definition of the term atheist, but you are conflating the two positions of (1) believing there are no gods and (2) not believing in gods.

You're also making a lot of statements about animals and living organisms that are nothing more than blind assertion.

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"Human is the one who believes in God". I found this definition at the first page of my daughter's 1st religion schoolbook.

When everything goes well , there is no apparent problem with this.

But when things go wrong, this definition becomes one of Humanity's worst nightmare.

It becomes "Human is the one who believe in (OUR) God". Other gods do not count anymore. By extension, the one who believe in another God is not human. It is an animal. And you can kill him as you kill a fly.

No one is protected against this kind of reasonning. Christians killed thousands of muslims through history, invoquing this excuse. And thousands of muslims are convinced they can kill impunishly all those who do not believe in Islam.

Nazi used the same argument presenting Jews as underhumans (untermensch), opening by this way the road to one of the most horrifying massacre ever. Ending with the judgment of the nazi criminals who could not understand what was that all about, because in their sick mind they were simply helping humanity getting rid of some animals.

Colonians killed and martyrize thousands of black people because they were not humans. And so on, and so on.

When will this end?

When we will all accept the evidence: we are all of us, animals. We have a place upon the genealogic tree of life on Earth. We are one with nature. Respect what gives you life, respect everything around you, the trees, the ants, the dogs, the apes and any other living being, water & air.

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Atheism also gives me the freedom to decide for myself about morality. I don't need to take someone's word for it that people who eat shellfish are evil.

In the same way, it would be difficult for anyone to convince me that some group of people were "subhuman" and could legitimately be wiped out. On the other hand if I thought that their destruction was God's will then I might well kill them.

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Atheists can not concede that animals do not have religion. This would make humans, who have evolved the religious charisma, to appear one step higher. This would be unique to humans, but not to all humans. Some would retain the animal way. Logic would imply a fork in the road of human evolution, with one aspect of humanity a direct extension of the apes, by their own admission, and another path with something, extra. This path can do the ape thing, plus that something extra.

Proving that animals don't have religion would be as hard as proving that god does not exist. One can never dot all the I's and cross all the t's. The other side can always delay. As such, the burden of proof has to fall on the pro-side (pro-god or pro-animals have religion). It is not up to science to conclusively disprove god by turning billions of stone. It only has to give it a quickie effort. Until positive proof, science can say god does not exist, and I can say animals don't have religion, with atheists an extension of this animal tradition. The ball is in the atheist court to prove they do.

There is another consideration. What would happen if an atheist pre-human animal (atheist ancestor) had an hallucination or vision. For all practical purposes, the pragmatic pre-human atheist animal will think he sees something. The UFO seems to enter the sensory systems, but was generated internally by the brain. In other words, say the brain projected, via some natural process, such that the separation between hard sensory reality and the world of dreams, blurs. One reacts to what they see.

There is precedent for this, such as a kitten chasing imaginary prey to practice hunting skills, or children having an imaginary friend to develop their imagination, with the unconscious mind helping to shape the conscious mind, using projection onto reality.

For example, man made global warming was not based on going outside and looking. It started in the mind, through reading and conceptualizing, to create an alternate reality, that was very real for many. It spread like a virus and was based on consulting electronic oracles. Even atheists have the skill at that point. Animals can not do this skill, since they stay in touch with reality.

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pioneer, the way burden of proof works is this: he who makes a claim must prove it. Someone claims animals are atheists? Great! Prove it! Someone claims animals are religious? Great! Prove it! No one is exempt, save those who make no claim.

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No one is exempt, save those who make no claim.

Prove it.

But yes, smartass'yness aside, I agree, but I would also add that when your claim is disputed (by more than one poster,a s you saw) then the burden of proof is even double so yours. Not only should you support your claim,but you should answer the counter-claims showing your claim as making no sense.

~moo

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What does Atheism offer? The same as any other mode of thought or philosophy, a philosophy on life, The Universe and Everything.

For some, it is through contemplation and meditation that they try to understand themselves and how they fit into the larger picture.

While a Theist, I'm neither required nor compelled to worship any "God". If I could be said to follow a "God" then it would be Themis, for without Justice, there is nothing. (Morally speaking) In that repsect, I'm no different from the Atheist who always strives to improve the Legal system in the name of Justice. Hid "God" is the concept of Justice, as is mine, we just go about it in different ways.

Nor is any form of detachment from reality required, or opposition to science for that matter. If someone accepts the concept of a creative force that is behind the Universe, then they also have to accept that we pissant little mortals inhabiting a puny little planet in the backwaters of the Universe cannot understand that force. We simply can't, any more than an ant can understand the Human Civilisation.

However, this is not to say that we never will. Evolution has given us cognitive powers and by using those through scientific methods, we may one day be in a position to understand. Given that we've only really been working at understanding the Universe for a few hundred years, it is highly unlikely that we know enough yet to know the right questions to ask, let alone understand the answers.

Some might have noted the corollary to this idea, namely that anybody who claims to have all the answers is automatically wrong.

It might take a million years for science to understand the meaning of "God" and to find the answers that philosophers have been groping blindly for for millenia. So what? Who says we have to be in a hurry?

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. . . .A belief in god requires cognitive skills detached from the sensory systems; imagination. . . . .

Well said, pioneer.

As humans, we can imagine anything from FTL travel to the Hollow Earth.

That doesn't make it real, and it doesn't make it false. Though I'm pretty sure that Hollow Earth has been sufficiently debunked.

Every Christian I know will agree that Zeus is imaginary. (Though it's tempting to sacrifice a goat to him. Just to see if he shows up. . .after all, it's been a while.)

Odin, Osiris, all of them are in the same boat as far as the people of faith, are concerned.

The only difference I can see between a theist and an atheist is that one deity. Just one. The rest are obviously imaginary.

Imagination is a wonderful thing. I can see all sorts of evolutionary pluses to a species being able to imagine what it cannot observe or directly sense.

If religion is the price we pay for this ability, it's probably worth it. Survival is important. Without it, we’re dodos.

Bill Wolfe

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The "pro" sides should have the burden of proof. Those who believe in god, and those who believe animals have religion, need to carry the burden proof.

I set an atheist challenge. The atheists must prove that animals have religion or else they need to concede that atheist lack something, since they descended from the apes, and apes don't have religion. I don't have to do any work, just keep harping until proof is supplied by the atheist. I will then discredit any offering of proof, using the atheist template.

Once you back someone into an impossible corner, like proving god or animals have religion, things sort of become self for filling. Even with the positive qualities that many atheist possess, one can use their own tactic to cloud these good qualities. I learned this from the descendants of the apes, who have no religion. The atheist religion is free to have faith other animals have religion. I don't need to research millions of critters that are or have been, so they can foot drag.

My take on the very first religion, which separated humans from the atheist animals, had to do with changes within the human brain, at the unconscious level. The most important effect was unconscious projection onto reality, so human reactions needed to take this into consideration.

This dynamics may have been similar to the kitten playing chase games, putting out all the activity of a real chase. There is no mouse. However, their unconscious is projecting into their imagination, so the kitten reacts to what it thinks is there. The total body output, to this altered reality, is better for memory creation, than just pretending a mouse without action. In the process of reacting to the projection it consciously learns and remembers with memory reinforcement of reality.

As a human example that is easier to see, if someone was psychotic and saw a lion (wasn't there), their body would react with the same fear as someone seeing a real lion. This deep level sensory reaction would create strong, maybe lifetime memories, compared to someone just pretending. In the case of the first religion projections, it was very natural, having a collective impact on humans, shaping human reactions and memories for the next step; civilization.

Essentially, the unconscious mind is the main frame aspect of the brain, capable of much faster data processing than the conscious mind. When we walk, consciousness only has to think command lines. The main frame has to coordinate dozens of muscles.

In the case of early religion projection, the main frame outputs to the terminal, which is the conscious mind. This gets consciousness involved in a real time reaction, to help create strong memories, so human consciousness is able to further evolve. The world of projection, by helping evolution into civilization, was as natural as nature, with earliest religions attributing the main frame output to nature spirits. If the nature spirit was in the tree, they might investigate and eat the peach.

In modern times, religion is still much more open to the mainframe. Atheism is more like a terminal process, since the modern terminal, through education, is closer to the mainframe of old. But the modern main frame has equally evolved and is still able to data crunch even faster than any terminal.

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"Atheists can not concede that animals do not have religion. This would make humans, who have evolved the religious charisma, to appear one step higher. "

No, I consider those who have caught religion to be one step lower; they are the ones who, at some level, choose not to think for themselves.

In my opinion, only humans have the ability to be misled by religion into doing things that are not good for the species (for example it's time someone explained the effect of condoms on overpopulation to the Pope. I hope that people will accept that's just one example; there are plenty I'm not just picking on one faith here).

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Atheism is a lack of something, by definition, so the question only really makes sense in the context of a particular religion being a default. So I guess you could say what it "offers" is freedom from whatever the religion in question demands of you. Which, generally speaking, involves some practices of worship, some unquestionable rules, and most importantly some avenues of thought that you cannot permit yourself to explore, either because it's already decided for you, because "faith" is considered inherently virtuous, or just because a certain amount of cognitive dissonance is required for faith in the first place. In a particularly religious society, I guess being specifically atheist can make you feel superior in intellectual honesty and courage, if feeling superior is important to you.

I'm not saying that you can't necessarily be intellectually honest and still be a "theist," BTW. But the question "what does it offer" implies intellectual dishonesty. It's the question of someone deciding what to believe not based on what is true, but what is to be gained by belief.

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Atheism is, as you say, the lack of something but that's not always a bad thing. Currently I have a lack of tuberculosis which doesn't trouble me much

The lack of TB is probably, at least in part, due to being vaccinated against it.

In a scenario where TB is prevalent the question "what do I gain from a lack of TB" is roughly equivalent to "what do I gain from vaccination".

What I gain from atheism is a lack of religion.

Unless anyone can show me that religion is actually good for something, then I consider TB to be a reasonable analogy to religion (both, for example, have been responsible for lots of deaths) and I consider atheism to be a reasonable analogy for vaccination.

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No, I consider those who have caught religion to be one step lower; they are the ones who, at some level, choose not to think for themselves.

As opposed to what? People who take anyone's word for anything at some level chose not to think for themselves. Due to the sheer amount of information, someone who personally verifies anything before accepting it is going to be extremely poorly informed.

In my opinion, only humans have the ability to be misled by religion into doing things that are not good for the species (for example it's time someone explained the effect of condoms on overpopulation to the Pope. I hope that people will accept that's just one example; there are plenty I'm not just picking on one faith here).

That it increases the proportion of people who are Catholic relative to those who are not? Ie, increases the fitness of Catholics?

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As opposed to swallowing the blatantly self interested nonsense that religion peddles; the stuff that's clearly fishier than a Nigerian business scheme.

You cited an excellent example of this; more Catholics (good for the church) but each of them poorer (bad for the believers).

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The "pro" sides should have the burden of proof. Those who believe in god, and those who believe animals have religion, need to carry the burden proof.

When someone makes an assertion, they are "pro" that assertion. You asserted that animals do not have religion. Therefore you are "pro" animals do not have religion and should carry the burden of proof.

I'm not making this up to make your life more difficult, it's just how debate works. Otherwise someone can use wording to create any "con" assertion and burden you with it.

I set an atheist challenge. The atheists must prove that animals have religion or else they need to concede that atheist lack something, since they descended from the apes, and apes don't have religion. I don't have to do any work, just keep harping until proof is supplied by the atheist. I will then discredit any offering of proof, using the atheist template.

First, I have no idea how anyone could prove or disprove whether animals have religion. Many have demonstrated an amazing capacity for abstract thought previously considered improbable - but "proof" is a pretty tall order either way.

Secondarily, I don't see the relevance of whether animals have religion or not. Whether they do or not, their outward behavior is what it is - so how could their internal behavior impact me in any way?

Once you back someone into an impossible corner, like proving god or animals have religion, things sort of become self for filling. Even with the positive qualities that many atheist possess, one can use their own tactic to cloud these good qualities. I learned this from the descendants of the apes, who have no religion. The atheist religion is free to have faith other animals have religion. I don't need to research millions of critters that are or have been, so they can foot drag.

Still don't see the connection or relevance. Can you clarify?

My take on the very first religion, which separated humans from the atheist animals, had to do with changes within the human brain, at the unconscious level. The most important effect was unconscious projection onto reality, so human reactions needed to take this into consideration.

This dynamics may have been similar to the kitten playing chase games, putting out all the activity of a real chase. There is no mouse. However, their unconscious is projecting into their imagination, so the kitten reacts to what it thinks is there. The total body output, to this altered reality, is better for memory creation, than just pretending a mouse without action. In the process of reacting to the projection it consciously learns and remembers with memory reinforcement of reality.

As a human example that is easier to see, if someone was psychotic and saw a lion (wasn't there), their body would react with the same fear as someone seeing a real lion. This deep level sensory reaction would create strong, maybe lifetime memories, compared to someone just pretending. In the case of the first religion projections, it was very natural, having a collective impact on humans, shaping human reactions and memories for the next step; civilization.

What phenomenon are you referring to? Dreaming? Hallucinations? Psychotic breaks? You mention psychosis as an example, but what is the phenomenon that impacts humans in shaping early religions? It sounds rather visceral.

Essentially, the unconscious mind is the main frame aspect of the brain, capable of much faster data processing than the conscious mind. When we walk, consciousness only has to think command lines. The main frame has to coordinate dozens of muscles.

To get technical, as far as I know the subconscious is just the part of the mind that isn't being constantly measured by other parts of the mind to create and maintain an internal state of reflection. A lot of thinking goes into thinking about what you are thinking, which slows down your thinking. Letting your mind just take care of certain tasks is often faster than thinking it out.

In the case of early religion projection, the main frame outputs to the terminal, which is the conscious mind. This gets consciousness involved in a real time reaction, to help create strong memories, so human consciousness is able to further evolve. The world of projection, by helping evolution into civilization, was as natural as nature, with earliest religions attributing the main frame output to nature spirits. If the nature spirit was in the tree, they might investigate and eat the peach.

In modern times, religion is still much more open to the mainframe. Atheism is more like a terminal process, since the modern terminal, through education, is closer to the mainframe of old. But the modern main frame has equally evolved and is still able to data crunch even faster than any terminal.

Interestingly, I actually "sorta" agree with you, but I think of it the other way around: Humans developed procedures that were beneficial, and at times were very complex (preparing foods so not to spoil, hygiene) and developed through social natural selection of successful habits as apposed to any actual understanding of microbiology. Knowing only that the procedures worked, and not why, the first religions allowed us to attach stories and meanings that help very high importance to the steps to ensure their fidelity over generations. If people simply said "this works, dunno why" then a person may skip a step, get lucky, and die three years later when a specific bacteria is more prevalent along with all the villagers who started skipping that step.

In that sense, the "mainframe" is the hard earned set of processes that when followed can produce a reliable result and the "terminal" is the means by which we try to design new processes based on sets of underlying principles. At least that's my take on what I think is the same thing you are describing.

For what it's worth, I actually have a lot of respect for the former and have to say in all humility, I am sure we don't nearly know enough today to fully understand all of what may unravel if we take all our traditions for granted and throw them out as obsolete.

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