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People who believe in god are broken


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iNow,

 

While I am humbled by Iggy's lack of reason to read my opinions, and realize therefore that my approach and style are not "working", to advance the discussion, I still feel I have a point, and a question that has great bearing on the discussion.

 

Point being, that we all have the knowledge that we individually are not the only game in town. And our town is not the only town in the country, and the county is not the only one on the planet, and the planet is not the only one in the solar system...

 

Question being at what point is drawing a line between oneself and the rest, a proper, realistic action, and when and where are lines improperly drawn?

 

Regards, TAR2

And by improper, I mean too far in or two far out, to fit the facts.

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Point being, that we all have the knowledge that we individually are not the only game in town. And our town is not the only town in the country, and the county is not the only one on the planet, and the planet is not the only one in the solar system...

 

Question being at what point is drawing a line between oneself and the rest, a proper, realistic action, and when and where are lines improperly drawn?

The only valid answer here IMO is, "it depends." It will vary based on the person or the situation or the issue being described, and IMO there is no universally accurate reply to this question except for, "it depends."

 

Regardless, I am not clear why you have asked this, nor how you think it ties into the rest of the discussion. I and others can agree that there is more out there, and that there is more than we know, but none of that is reason enough IMO to actively believe in the existence of some deity or any of the various gods human imagination has created throughout history. It's no reason to change one's worldview or to move through this life as if you have access to some truth, IMO.

 

 

Also, while I'm thinking about it... I've shared this with you before, but will share it again. Even though you don't believe in the Judeo-Christian god, you are not really an atheist based on the way you describe your beliefs, Tar. You are more of a deist, really, and that's a separate category entirely. Continuing to do so just creates confusion in your message. It's like saying "I'm a dog," when you're a human... and all because you are using a different definition of "dog" than everyone else.

Edited by iNow
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That's not accurate, John.

 

It was science4ever in post 1386 who said, "Can one decied <sic> to believe in something one know is not true?" Iggy suggested such things were not signs of mental illness, but were instead signs of humanity.

 

While potentially described as a poetic and clever reply in support of a position being derided, that is the point where he began conflating actively choosing to believe in things known to be untrue with the human tendency toward rationalization and wishful thinking, and where these last few pages of silliness began.

OK, science4ever introduced it as a question

"Can one decied to believe in something one know is not true?"

But it was Iggy who said that everyone could and sought to defend that point of view - including the bit about deliberate choice because that's the bit I questioned.

And eventually he said that he didn't think it matters.

then,he changed his mind.

"Like I just said, I don't care if it is deliberate or not. " in post 1464

yet in post 1468:

"I'm trying to say that people can, and do, *decide* (free will and all) to believe that which they know is not true. "

 

There really is a difference.

It's a decision, or it isn't.

 

and if it's deliberate, I'd like to know how.

How could someone exercise their free will and believe that I'm a butterfly?

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it was Iggy who said that everyone could and sought to defend that point of view - including the bit about deliberate choice because that's the bit I questioned.

And eventually he said that he didn't think it matters.

then,he changed his mind.

"Like I just said, I don't care if it is deliberate or not. " in post 1464

yet in post 1468:

"I'm trying to say that people can, and do, *decide* (free will and all) to believe that which they know is not true. "

 

There really is a difference.

It's a decision, or it isn't.

 

Agreed. Good catch.

 

if it's deliberate, I'd like to know how.

How could someone exercise their free will and believe that I'm a butterfly?

 

This whole discussion about believing things known to be untrue keeps reminding me of Orwellian doublethink.

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Just to jump in .... sorry

 

TOPIC: People who believe in God are broke.

 

Even though the topic has a sarcastic chill, the minds of those who believe in God (godavg ) is of some merit. … By broken in the since how the avg citizen view these things. To joeave, a God fearing person is crippled to do anything without the consideration of a God that does not exist. This in joeavg terms keeps godavg cleaved from interaction with society. This joeavg would call “Broken “. However from the standpoint of godave, believing in god is all consuming and societies norms are irrelevant. Godavg is eating lunch with God and spends this important time pondering life cycles, the infinite, the Cosmos, God’s purpose for mankind, philosophy and on and on. These ponderances are not in books, computers, Religion or TV and have yet to be resolved. That is what our brains do best that no other beings or robotics don’t even come close. To do this successfully, the brain of godave must step over the tipping point of experience, education and humanity and possibly into madness. Godavg in this world would go mad if God foundations and principals are there to catch him.

 

….. What is infinity ??? Even our largest computers and telescopes can’t find it. So we reach the tipping point that it is only a useless unreachable math concept. Godave then asks God for help with infinity and the reply is that He is before minus infinity and after infinity and also creates everything from nothing. With that, infinity is somehow bounded and the investigation must go forward. ….. Liebnitz / Newton invent the calculus and infinity is tamed forever. ….. It is said that Newton couldn’t safely operate the elevator and would be considered by joeavg as “Broken”. … so what.

 

 

Gottfried Leibniz, 1647-1716 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gottfried_Leibniz

 

Gottfried_Wilhelm_von_Leibniz.jpg

 

broken, I don't think so.

 

 

God and theodicy views.

 

 

Theodicy and optimism[edit source | editbeta]

(Note that the word "optimism" here is used in the classic sense of optimal, not in the mood-related sense, as being positively hopeful.)

The Theodicy[43] tries to justify the apparent imperfections of the world by claiming that it is optimal among all possible worlds. It must be the best possible and most balanced world, because it was created by an all powerful and all knowing God, who would not choose to create an imperfect world if a better world could be known to him or possible to exist. In effect, apparent flaws that can be identified in this world must exist in every possible world, because otherwise God would have chosen to create the world that excluded those flaws.

Leibniz asserted that the truths of theology (religion) and philosophy cannot contradict each other, since reason and faith are both "gifts of God" so that their conflict would imply God contending against himself. The Theodicy is Leibniz's attempt to reconcile his personal philosophical system with his interpretation of the tenets of Christianity.[44] This project was motivated in part by Leibniz's belief, shared by many conservative philosophers and theologians during theEnlightenment, in the rational and enlightened nature of the Christian religion, at least as this was defined in tendentious comparisons between Christian and non Western or "primitive" religious practices and beliefs. It was also shaped by Leibniz's belief in the perfectibility of human nature (if humanity relied on correct philosophy and religion as a guide), and by his belief that metaphysical necessity must have a rational or logical foundation, even if this metaphysical causality seemed inexplicable in terms of physical necessity (the natural laws identified by science).

Because reason and faith must be entirely reconciled, any tenet of faith which could not be defended by reason must be rejected. Leibniz then approached one of the central criticisms of Christian theism:[45] if God is all good, all wise and all powerful, how did evil come into the world? The answer (according to Leibniz) is that, while God is indeed unlimited in wisdom and power, his human creations, as creations, are limited both in their wisdom and in their will (power to act). This predisposes humans to false beliefs, wrong decisions and ineffective actions in the exercise of their free will. God does not arbitrarily inflict pain and suffering on humans; rather he permits both moral evil (sin) and physical evil (pain and suffering) as the necessary consequences of metaphysical evil (imperfection), as a means by which humans can identify and correct their erroneous decisions, and as a contrast to true good.

Further, although human actions flow from prior causes that ultimately arise in God, and therefore are known as a metaphysical certainty to God, an individual's free will is exercised within natural laws, where choices are merely contingently necessary, to be decided in the event by a "wonderful spontaneity" that provides individuals an escape from rigorous predestination.

Further information about this theodicy, including its supporters and detractors, can be found in the article Best of all possible worlds.

Edited by zorro
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Zorro, you have posted that twice.

Why?

 

iNow,

There's a lot about religion that reminds me of Orwell.

 

One thread is a old carryover to the other, confusing me. Take my post out of the old thread if you wish.

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The only valid answer here IMO is, "it depends." It will vary based on the person or the situation or the issue being described, and IMO there is no universally accurate reply to this question except for, "it depends."

 

Regardless, I am not clear why you have asked this, nor how you think it ties into the rest of the discussion. I and others can agree that there is more out there, and that there is more than we know, but none of that is reason enough IMO to actively believe in the existence of some deity or any of the various gods human imagination has created throughout history. It's no reason to change one's worldview or to move through this life as if you have access to some truth, IMO.

 

 

Also, while I'm thinking about it... I've shared this with you before, but will share it again. Even though you don't believe in the Judeo-Christian god, you are not really an atheist based on the way you describe your beliefs, Tar. You are more of a deist, really, and that's a separate category entirely. Continuing to do so just creates confusion in your message. It's like saying "I'm a dog," when you're a human... and all because you are using a different definition of "dog" than everyone else.

 

iNow,

 

It pertains to our discussion of what is broken and what is normal.

 

We all have this incomplete, suspect, limited, bias model of the world, taken from the singular perspective of a human being, who only exists in one moment at a time, in one place at a time, but non-the-less holds a model of the entire universe in a tiny by comparison brain. Yet it is the SAME universe that I model as the one you do. I grant the universe, and understand the universe, and know the universe to be vast and aged and complex beyond my comprehension. As do you.

 

Any imaginary place holder that I have for that which is beyond my comprehension, is insufficient to suffice as your placeholder.

And your placeholder for that which is beyond your comprehension is insufficient to act as my placeholder...except as it turns out, consistent with all takes of that which is within our mutual comprehension, we both are referring to and modeling, and in awe of the exact same universe, which we both agree on is manifest, existent, true, and is the very same universe that we both are making our incomplete, suspect, limited, bias models of.

 

So Zorro, another such human, quotes Leibniz, another such human, as determining that therefore, to be correct, and be talking about the existing thing anybody could be talking about, it must satisfy both reason and faith, and there can be no inconsistencies between that determined as true, by reason, and that determined as true by faith.

 

You have maintained within this thread, that faith is the belief in that which one knows is not true.

 

John Cuthber has illustrated that this is not something reasonable people do, as no one can even suggest how a reasonable man would believe that he was a butterfly.

 

Reasonable people come to the conclusions, based on reason and faith, that they are not the only game in town.

 

Therefore, in my argument and toward my point, there is not a significant difference between believing in your wife, and believing in president Obama, and believing in Leibniz, and believing that the universe has gifted you reason and faith.

 

And since most people, by my estimation, and giving them the benefit of the doubt, exist in and of the same universe I do, and have a placeholder for that which is beyond their comprehension, which they have agreed to call God for communication and understanding between men and women holding the same solid, evident understanding that is exactly consistent and referencial to the same universe,,,belief in this thing is not broken or abnormal. It is quite apparent to everybody, that understands, with no contradiction, that which satisfies, both reason and faith, in reference to it.

 

Regards, TAR2

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iNow,

 

It pertains to our discussion of what is broken and what is normal.

 

We all have this incomplete, suspect, limited, bias model of the world, taken from the singular perspective of a human being, who only exists in one moment at a time, in one place at a time, but non-the-less holds a model of the entire universe in a tiny by comparison brain. Yet it is the SAME universe that I model as the one you do. I grant the universe, and understand the universe, and know the universe to be vast and aged and complex beyond my comprehension. As do you.

 

Any imaginary place holder that I have for that which is beyond my comprehension, is insufficient to suffice as your placeholder.

And your placeholder for that which is beyond your comprehension is insufficient to act as my placeholder...except as it turns out, consistent with all takes of that which is within our mutual comprehension, we both are referring to and modeling, and in awe of the exact same universe, which we both agree on is manifest, existent, true, and is the very same universe that we both are making our incomplete, suspect, limited, bias models of.

 

So Zorro, another such human, quotes Leibniz, another such human, as determining that therefore, to be correct, and be talking about the existing thing anybody could be talking about, it must satisfy both reason and faith, and there can be no inconsistencies between that determined as true, by reason, and that determined as true by faith.

 

You have maintained within this thread, that faith is the belief in that which one knows is not true.

 

John Cuthber has illustrated that this is not something reasonable people do, as no one can even suggest how a reasonable man would believe that he was a butterfly.

 

Reasonable people come to the conclusions, based on reason and faith, that they are not the only game in town.

 

Therefore, in my argument and toward my point, there is not a significant difference between believing in your wife, and believing in president Obama, and believing in Leibniz, and believing that the universe has gifted you reason and faith.

 

And since most people, by my estimation, and giving them the benefit of the doubt, exist in and of the same universe I do, and have a placeholder for that which is beyond their comprehension, which they have agreed to call God for communication and understanding between men and women holding the same solid, evident understanding that is exactly consistent and referencial to the same universe,,,belief in this thing is not broken or abnormal. It is quite apparent to everybody, that understands, with no contradiction, that which satisfies, both reason and faith, in reference to it.

 

Regards, TAR2

 

 

Why does that place holder have to be an intelligent being? Why can't it just be an unknown but being investigated?

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Tar - Our models may be limited, but that's hardly the point. The point is that some people assume extraordinary things in the absence of any evidence whatsoever. We can all agree that there is more out there without thinking it's appropriate to conclude anything whatsoever based on faith or wish thinking alone.

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Moontanman,

 

There is no reason why there needs to be a super anthropomorphic intelligence. I rather think we can account for such a projection, as a projection. I was not reading the quote from Liebnitz that Zorro gave us, as any kind of substantiation of an unreasonable God. I took it in quite the opposite fashion. There can be no contradiction between what is arrived at by faith and what is arrived at by reason, because a contradiction would be a falsification. What is true is very solid and can not be falsified, by definition. The fact that reality fits together very well, energy and matter always having to account for themselves, every action having an equal and opposite reaction, every entity having entities of which it is made (at least down to the quark level), and every entity being a component of a larger entity (at least up to the level of the entire universe, taken as a whole), with vibrations at one end of the scale, being felt by entities at the other, and vice-a-versa. makes it evident to me, that holding a match to the sky, is no small feat. The photons will reach quite distant atoms and bump an electron up a notch...some very many and some very diverse atoms will be affected by the light of that match.

 

There is no reason to care about an atom 47 lys from Earth,. There is no way to see that atom being hit by a photon currently, that was from a match I lit and held to the night sky when I was 13 (after hearing that the light of a match on an unsunlit portion of the moon, could be seen from Earth), but currently, in our universe, a photon from that match, IS hitting an atom somewhere and sending an electron to a higher energy level, and when that electron falls back to a lower energy level and releases a photon, that quantum of energy might hit an atom on Earth, in 2060, that might be in a carbon atom in the scalp of a currently unborn grandchild of mine. In a sense, in a very real sense, although in a tiny sense, I could have warmed my unborn grandchild, that tiny bit, by holding up that match. If that grandchild "felt" an intelligence, warming him/her, would it be without "reason"?

 

iNow,

 

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Agreed. Most of the claims of the Bible have been falsified. Reasonable men and women know what parts and peices are story and figurative in nature. People who discount reason in favor of faith, are suspect in my mind, as not living up to the requirement that the two require coexistence, and no contradiction. But people who discount faith, in favor of reason, might be also ignoring the requirement, that there must be no contradiction for the thing to be true. And in this light, the fact that WE, or at least ME, is intelligent, aware and alive, proves that the universe is capable of such things. And then "it depends" only on where you want to draw the line, as to determining which parts of the universe have intelligence and reason, and which are without such things.

 

Regards, TAR2

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You said to me: This discussion started around post 1387 where someone asked the innocent question "can one decide to believe in something one knows is not true?" and you replied "yes, but it's usually a sign of mental illness when that happens".

 

After a few exchanges, while trying to clarify that there is an important difference between actively choosing to believe in something known to be untrue and rationalizing something or fooling oneself, I said the following in an attempt to reinforce where we seem to agree: People believe in silly things, and fool themselves frequently.

 

In what way do you believe these statements contradict one another?

 

I guess I fail to see the difference between deciding to fool someone, then doing it, and 'fooling someone'. Likewise with oneself. It seems at least like a distinction without a difference.

 

Unless people who decide to believe things which they know are wrong are mental, while people who do it unwittingly are sane then I still fail to see how it matters.

 

On some level, I think we all decide to believe the strange things we believe. We like them so we foster them.

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I guess I fail to see the difference between deciding to fool someone, then doing it, and 'fooling someone'. Likewise with oneself. It seems at least like a distinction without a difference.

I sometimes think my child is the most adorable and innately intelligent human that's ever been born. You don't see the difference between thinking that and thinking she is, in fact, a magical purple dragon or that she was hand delivered to my wife and I by aliens from bronze based civilization seven galaxies away?
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I sometimes think my child is the most adorable and innately intelligent human that's ever been born. You don't see the difference between thinking that and thinking she is, in fact, a magical purple dragon or that she was hand delivered to my wife and I by aliens from bronze based civilization seven galaxies away?

 

I said earlier that the first is mere wishful thinking and the latter is a delusion. Most religious beliefs fall somewhere between as an illusion. Clearly I see a difference. Not sure why you're asking.

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Clearly I see a difference. Not sure why you're asking.

There's a difference between people actively believing in things they know to be untrue... in self-evidently ludicrous things... and "fooling themselves." I asked the question above as a rhetorical device in an attempt to help illuminate the nature of that distinction... a distinction that you continue saying you cannot understand.

 

You have been repeatedly conflating the two (actively believing in things known to be untrue... self-evidently ludicrous things... and fooling oneself or engaging in a rationalization) as if they are one and the same.

 

As should be more readily apparent in context of my silly example above, and as you've just here now stipulated yourself in the quote above (where you said, "clearly I see a difference"), there is an important and relevant distinction between those things.

 

Actively believing that god(s) exist is not equivalent to thinking you have the most attractive spouse, the smartest child, or any of the other countless many ways that people "fool themselves," it is also not equivalent to rationalizing killing an enemy during war, stealing food to feed a hungry sibling, telling a white lie to a person in power as an attempt to advance your own status or position, or any of the other countless many ways that people "rationalize,"... yet that is basically the argument you've been making in this thread... that those are the same thing as actively believing in something known to be untrue... self-evidently ludicrous things.

 

That's been your position and that's what I've shown to be fallacious. It was your position throughout, that is at least until just now where you conceded the distinction when pointed out to you in another context.

Edited by iNow
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We are certainly talking about two different things, yes. The discussion starts here:

 

Can one decied to believe in something one know is not true?

 

Yes, but it's usually a sign of mental illness when that happens.

 



If you were referring *only* to delusions such as believing that ones baby is a dragon then I agree with you. I, on the other hand, believe that most people do decide to believe much less delusional things even when they perfectly rationally know that they are untrue.

I am not conflating. I am denying your premise that the word "decide" excludes all but the most severe delusions.

Edited by Iggy
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Why? The act of deciding is rather relevant here.

 

Because knowledge is not the only thing informing belief. People have wishes, dreams, feelings, and a load of cognitive biases a yard deep. All of those things inform belief even in the healthy mind. A person simply has to use some kind of decision making process in forming belief.

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Agreed, and when they decide to actively believe in self-evidently ludicrous things it becomes clear that their decision making process... their rationality... their critical thinking... are flawed and broken.

 

These same people don't tend to believe in self-evidently ludicrous things in other aspects of their lives... They don't believe that cars are powered by trimmed nostril hairs... They don't believe that the farts of pink leprechauns cause erections in leprechauns... so they are breaking from their normal style of thinking and using a double standard when making decisions about god(s).

 

The word "broken" might make you personally uncomfortable, but that doesn't change its appropriateness in describing what is happening here.

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Agreed, and when they decide to actively believe in self-evidently ludicrous things it becomes clear that their decision making process... their rationality... their critical thinking... are flawed and broken.

But they don't decide to actively believe in self-evidently ludicrous things. They believe in things that are self-evidently true, or at least self-evidently possible.

None of them are basing their beliefs on what is self-evident to you, they are basing their beliefs on what is self-evident to them.

If a theist were to evaluate you based on what is self-evident to them, I imagine they would conclude you were broken.

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Agreed, and when they decide to actively believe in self-evidently ludicrous things it becomes clear that their decision making process... their rationality... their critical thinking... are flawed and broken.

 

These same people don't tend to believe in self-evidently ludicrous things in other aspects of their lives... They don't believe that cars are powered by trimmed nostril hairs... They don't believe that the farts of pink leprechauns cause erections in leprechauns... so they are breaking from their normal style of thinking and using a double standard when making decisions about god(s).

 

The word "broken" might make you personally uncomfortable, but that doesn't change its appropriateness in describing what is happening here.

 

You seem to be so caught up in your own metaphysical position that you can't see that you're in a glass house throwing stones.

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Agreed, and when they decide to actively believe in self-evidently ludicrous things it becomes clear that their decision making process... their rationality... their critical thinking... are flawed and broken.

And I agree that their rationality is flawed, but you were talking about mental illness. Everyone's rationality is flawed. Everyone fails critical thinking on some subject and in some way. If that makes a person mental and broken then mental and broken we all are.

 

These same people don't tend to believe in self-evidently ludicrous things in other aspects of their lives... They don't believe that cars are powered by trimmed nostril hairs...

People with religious belief can, by and large, function in the real world on a daily basis. Belief in God doesn't stop Francis Collins from doing whatever it is he does, or great past presidents from doing whatever they did..

 

The types of examples you keep using represent people whom are so functionally impaired that they can't get things done in the real world on a daily basis. They have to be locked up and cared for.

 

You accused me of conflating, but I'm pretty sure I'm the one who is not.

 

The word "broken" might make you personally uncomfortable...

and you might get a warm and fuzzy feeling every time you use it. Such cognitive biases mean that we aren't perfectly rational creatures. I'm ok with that, even if the subject is religion.

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