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(CNN)   Maryland mom performs exorcism on her children, succeeds in releasing their trapped souls   (cnn.com) divider line 254
    More: Fail, woman charged, Montgomery County Police  
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12798 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Jan 2014 at 4:05 PM (35 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-01-19 11:17:31 PM
Very superstitious.
 
2014-01-19 11:18:12 PM

phrawgh: Marcintosh: phrawgh: The Lord works in mysterious ways. He needed these children as His new angels in His Kingdom. We cannot question Him nor know His reasons. These children are truly blessed to be at His right hand. Praise the Lord! His will be done!

You could consider joining them  .  .  .

Alas, I am not as lucky as these blessed children. I must toil on this disgusting, sinful, realm of Satan we call Earth until that Blessed day when the Lord calls me Home. I know it's a sin but I envy these sweet angels. I pray for forgiveness.

If only the Lord would have guided my mothers hand so early! I could be there now. No man knows the hour...

Amen!


Ask and ye shall receive!
Have you considered asking for help?
There may be many which would take joy in giving you the blessings of the Lord. :)
I don't really know you, so I'm really just guessing.
 
2014-01-19 11:20:58 PM

skantea: Which begs the question, do athiests trust their own instincts?  Or are even those just unprovable beliefs?


The question embodies a fallacy, specifically that atheists are a unified group for which there could be an answer to your question. Nothing about being an atheist suggests that one should share other beliefs with others beyond a lack a belief in gods.
 
2014-01-19 11:21:19 PM

JohnnyC: MechaPyx: So we should get rid of religion because it gives people ideas?

I'm not suggesting that we "get rid of religion". I don't want to take it away from people... I would prefer that people give up religion on their own. I would like people to come to grips with how toxic religion has been for society in the past and continues to be today.

I'm fully aware that people won't give it up... they're too entrenched in it. They like to believe that they're going to see their dead grandparents/mom/dad/sister/brother again in some perfect afterlife. They love their 'beautiful lies' too much to give them up. Heck, you, as an example, seem to love religion so much that you're unwilling to accept that it leads some people to do horrific things at all.

So in short, I don't want to take away your toys... I want you to grow beyond the need for them.


I'm not religious, by the way. I'm actually rather wary of religious institutions because most of them would insist I am damned and going to hell just for being who I am. So yeah, I'm not a big fan.

I don't deny a lot of awful things are done in the name of religion but I see no point in blaming religion for the failings of people. A lot of awful things have done in the name of science too.
 
2014-01-19 11:29:55 PM

sendtodave: kwame: Magruda: kwame: I feel bad for your experience. I feel worse that it left you so incredibly small-minded.

Small minded does not mean "lends no credence to insanity".

Not sure what you think you're saying. Your mother was insane. If she didn't use religion as a catalyst, it would have been aliens or the government or fluoride in the water. Quit blaming something that was in no way the cause of your treatment.

Religion lends itself well to insanity, though, for some reason.

Maybe because belief in things that have no basis in reality is madness.


It's reassuring to occasionally remind oneself that only a tiny fraction of "religious" people actually believe any of the nonsense their religion prescribes. 95% are Sunday Christians, Yom Kippur Jews and Ramadan Muslims. They observe their faiths as a feature of their cultural makeup, and neither literally believe it's teachings nor make any real effort to abide by them - and the fact that they SAY they do means less than nothing.
The 5% who really DO believe it are, literally, insane.
As far as the clergy - these are people with a wide variety of motivations - some of them noble, many of them distinctly not.
Religion was a tool of social control, is a badge of cultural distinction, and confers many social benefits upon it's adherents. Actual belief is utterly superfluous.
Religion will be with us until it isn't - and if you expect the evils of the world to evaporate upon it's departure, you will be disappointed.
Those evils don't proceed from religion. They proceed from the human heart.
 
2014-01-19 11:47:45 PM

wademh: Objectively, this confirms the accuracy of my perceptions that occurred prior to objective evidence and, objectively denies the requirement for hard objective evidence to reveal truth.


BZZZT. Wrong.

This confirms nothing objectively.  It is, in fact, a perfect example of confirmation bias.  If you really are a scientist of some kind, I imagine that you're pretty bad at it.

As for the rest of your post, it's clear that you (like most people who stubbornly insist on identifying as "agnostic") do not understand the difference between ontology and epistemology.
 
2014-01-19 11:53:41 PM
  I have a good friend whose parents did TWO exorcisms on her in the nineties.  They were scared because she liked The Cure.  Even though her husband tries to keep her and her kids away from the grandparents, she is still terrified of burning in hell forever.  It has given her a creepy, irrational sense of anxiety.

/Religion is a hell of a drug
//Do we still have to listen to people spout craziness, and respect it?
///Can we invent a new religion?  One that stays open to Scientific discovery, and doesn't promote idiotic things, like human sacrifice as payment for your sins?  Before you are even born?  And, how did they sell a Virgin Birth story in an area where unwed mothers still get stoned to death?
////I hope someday we find a cure for this brand of mental illness
 
2014-01-20 12:04:35 AM

Z-clipped: wademh: Objectively, this confirms the accuracy of my perceptions that occurred prior to objective evidence and, objectively denies the requirement for hard objective evidence to reveal truth.

BZZZT. Wrong.

This confirms nothing objectively.  It is, in fact, a perfect example of confirmation bias.  If you really are a scientist of some kind, I imagine that you're pretty bad at it.

As for the rest of your post, it's clear that you (like most people who stubbornly insist on identifying as "agnostic") do not understand the difference between ontology and epistemology.


It is not confirmation bias. I'm referring to those things that which I believed were true prior to having evidence that have later turned out to be true when evidence became available. If you think that is confirmation bias you need to consult a dictionary.

As for the rest of your guesses, you've failed in that as well. I am agnostic about that which I cannot know. I certainly do know, for reasonable bounds of uncertainty, that the cartoonish representation of the Abrahamic God that sent a worldwide flood is wrong. And there are other specific claims about gods that I actively disbelieve. However, not being limited to childish conceptions I know that Spinoza's God is an entirely different kettle of fish, as are other more abstracted concepts more aligned with deism. I do suppose that if there is a god, we have a poor handle on her.
 
2014-01-20 12:06:17 AM

Z-clipped: wademh: Objectively, this confirms the accuracy of my perceptions that occurred prior to objective evidence and, objectively denies the requirement for hard objective evidence to reveal truth.

BZZZT. Wrong.

This confirms nothing objectively.  It is, in fact, a perfect example of confirmation bias.  If you really are a scientist of some kind, I imagine that you're pretty bad at it.

As for the rest of your post, it's clear that you (like most people who stubbornly insist on identifying as "agnostic") do not understand the difference between ontology and epistemology.


I nominate you to stick your hand in the nearest large Hadron collider.  There will be a certificate of accomplishment.
 
2014-01-20 12:08:09 AM

PsiChick: but if you're going to claim someone is mentally ill


Please point out exactly where I claimed someone is mentally ill. Go ahead, I'll wait.

PsiChick: please use real science for statistics and the actual definition of mental illness to determine the validity of your statement.


Please do the same. Post some data which shows that belief in angels, demons, miracles, prayer, and an interventionist God is not the majority belief among Americans. If you reject the reports on poll data that I linked, then feel free to provide data which refutes them.
 
2014-01-20 12:12:12 AM

cryinoutloud: The more extreme the church


EX-TREEEEME CHURCH! *chugs sacramental wine*
 
2014-01-20 12:20:17 AM

DarkSoulNoHope: [1.bp.blogspot.com image 441x207]

"Feel the burn."

[i.ytimg.com image 480x360]

"Good, Dory."


Meh. Boring. Imma change the channel.
i.imgur.com
 
2014-01-20 12:21:06 AM

mamoru: PsiChick: but if you're going to claim someone is mentally ill

Please point out exactly where I claimed someone is mentally ill. Go ahead, I'll wait.

PsiChick: please use real science for statistics and the actual definition of mental illness to determine the validity of your statement.

Please do the same. Post some data which shows that belief in angels, demons, miracles, prayer, and an interventionist God is not the majority belief among Americans. If you reject the reports on poll data that I linked, then feel free to provide data which refutes them.


You did claim that religion is a mental illness, which is a failed claim on a purely semantic level. You also make it clear you are asserting that belief in Angels or Fairies, presumably Leprechauns and Big Foot are symptomatic of mental illness. It's reasonable to ask you to provide a scientific framework for your claims based on the premise that you reject such beliefs from a scientific framework. You know, for consistency's sake.

If you do so, please account for the historical observation that humanity has indulged in animistic beliefs back into prehistory. Was that mental illness as well or a reflection of something innate in the human mind, as innate as our primate tendency to follow an alpha male or defend our tribe against perceived threats?
 
2014-01-20 12:29:01 AM

wademh: You did claim that religion is a mental illness


Where exactly did I claim this. Go ahead and point it out. I'll wait.
 
2014-01-20 12:35:56 AM

mamoru: wademh: You did claim that religion is a mental illness

Where exactly did I claim this. Go ahead and point it out. I'll wait.


ah, I see, I did not recognize the italics in one of PsiChick's posts that you responded to and so interpreted the comments as yours when they were in fact quoted text. My eye sight is not what it once was. My apologies.
 
2014-01-20 12:42:37 AM

wademh: ah, I see, I did not recognize the italics in one of PsiChick's posts that you responded to and so interpreted the comments as yours when they were in fact quoted text. My eye sight is not what it once was. My apologies.


Fair enough, and accepted. FWIW, the only thing I am taking issue with is the claim that belief in angels, demons, miracles, prayer, and God influencing everday events is NOT a majority belief among Americans. This is a claim that PsiChick made, and I disagree with this claim, based on the polling reported in the links I posted.

Yes, news polls are not the most rigorous and it would be wrong to draw concrete conclusions from them about the general population (as they are only truly representative of the people who participated in the poll). But they can be suggestive, and in this case several different polls are suggesting that PsiChick's claim is not accurate. Unless we assume that each poll just happened to only be answered by the small portion of the population amongst whom the belief in such things is the majority?
 
2014-01-20 12:45:39 AM

mamoru: PsiChick: but if you're going to claim someone is mentally ill

Please point out exactly where I claimed someone is mentally ill. Go ahead, I'll wait.

PsiChick: please use real science for statistics and the actual definition of mental illness to determine the validity of your statement.

Please do the same. Post some data which shows that belief in angels, demons, miracles, prayer, and an interventionist God is not the majority belief among Americans. If you reject the reports on poll data that I linked, then feel free to provide data which refutes them.


1) The post I replied to was calling people mentally ill. Your point was to agree with him by citing data. Why should I or anyone else think you  aren't calling them mentally ill?

2) I've never seen data that specific. However, what I  have seen is the diagnostic criteria for mental illness: the Four D's. Curiously enough, it excludes most religious belief. Funny how that works.

/As I mentioned, part of the issue with your data is that things like 'I believe in miracles' is used as a common shorthand for 'I believe things happen that cannot be explained', not 'I believe finding my car keys this morning was a miracle'. I've never seen  any data differentiate that, because it's hard to do.
 
2014-01-20 12:51:57 AM

Lee451: ReverendJimBobHammer: Mister Peejay: skantea: All comments about religion will reveal your personal bias.  The biatch was just plain crazy.  If has had said the moon made her do it, would we question whether the moon was bad for us?

While it is true that religion was the medium, it's even more true that there are billions of people who manage to avoid killing their children because of it.

So:  Yes, biatch be crazy.

That makes for a couple of kidnappings and these two murders over the last year because of exorcisms, I don't recall any because of the moon.

Yes biatches be crazy but religion encouraged the crazy rather than suggesting maybe some counseling and medication for it. My otherwise totally sane mother was worried about me "inviting evil spirits to take over [my] body" by using a Ouija board I bought in high school to use for laughs with my stoner buddies. She was intelligent and college educated, ran the family business and was the director of religious education program for a 2000 member catholic church.

Religion convinced her evil faries could control me. That's how stupid religion makes you.

You smoked pot and played with a ouija board yet you say  religionmakes one stupid? The fact you played with the ouija board tells me you were trying to contact something you could not see. Why else would someone use one?


Got the Oija board completely as a joke. I'm almost positive that not a single person that was there when we used it believed it was any more than a silly thing to do in the dark with some hot chicks after watching a horror movie to get us all in the mood. Not everyone who buys tarot cards or Oija boards or any other fortune telling aid believes in them. I would hazard a guess that quite a sizable majority of them are purchased as a joke.

And absolutely I will unconditionally say that getting high occasionally is nowhere near as dumb as going to a church and believing even a little of the derp they spew there. Unlike the sad little apologists in this thread who claim the majority of religious people hold perfectly sane beliefs I have to say the ones I grew up around did not. There were several record warnings in my little town as I grew up (not the battles but AC/DC and Sabath) my religious peers could feel and talk to jebus and many, many adults bought into the whole satanic panic. Hey, you pagans weren't immune either, I never met a wiccan who wasn't almost completely nuts.
 
2014-01-20 12:57:38 AM

mamoru: wademh: ah, I see, I did not recognize the italics in one of PsiChick's posts that you responded to and so interpreted the comments as yours when they were in fact quoted text. My eye sight is not what it once was. My apologies.

Fair enough, and accepted. FWIW, the only thing I am taking issue with is the claim that belief in angels, demons, miracles, prayer, and God influencing everday events is NOT a majority belief among Americans. This is a claim that PsiChick made, and I disagree with this claim, based on the polling reported in the links I posted.

Yes, news polls are not the most rigorous and it would be wrong to draw concrete conclusions from them about the general population (as they are only truly representative of the people who participated in the poll). But they can be suggestive, and in this case several different polls are suggesting that PsiChick's claim is not accurate. Unless we assume that each poll just happened to only be answered by the small portion of the population amongst whom the belief in such things is the majority?


The complicating reality is that most people, like the Queen said to Alice, sometimes believe 6 impossible things before breakfast. After coffee they sometimes no longer believe them, for example, they can believe  they will never drink like that again.

There's a fact about human cognition, we take short cuts. This has been established in many ways the simplest illustrations are optical illusions or even watching animations where we unconsciously interpolate. Very little of what goes on in our heads has rational foundations and any expectation otherwise, for other or delusions about ourselves, are almost certainly in error.
 
2014-01-20 01:05:54 AM

PsiChick: Your point was to agree with him by citing data.


No, my point was to disagree with you because your unsupported claim was counter to polls I had seen in the news about such beliefs.

PsiChick: I've never seen data that specific.


So you have nothing to support your claim that such beliefs are not majority beliefs among Americans? I look forward to your retraction, then.
 
2014-01-20 01:12:30 AM

Magruda: kwame: Magruda: kwame: I feel bad for your experience. I feel worse that it left you so incredibly small-minded.

Small minded does not mean "lends no credence to insanity".

Not sure what you think you're saying. Your mother was insane. If she didn't use religion as a catalyst, it would have been aliens or the government or fluoride in the water. Quit blaming something that was in no way the cause of your treatment.

I don't remember any local organization teaching the ways of aliens. There was a whole group of people willing to give her advice and tell her that her actions were correct. Just look at the defense you are offering to her delusions.


What, you don't have Scientology where you are?
 
2014-01-20 01:26:22 AM

PsiChick: 1) The post I replied to was calling people mentally ill. Your point was to agree with him by citing data. Why should I or anyone else think you aren't calling them mentally ill?


Also, may I ask what you were trying to imply when you made your claim that such beliefs only belong to a subset of religious fundamentalists and were not majority beliefs? It almost seems like you might think such beliefs may indicate mental illness (or at least strong irrationality that may, if not cause, at least enhance other psychopathologies), so you felt the need to point out that such beliefs don't apply to the majority (a claim which you have not supported). If I am mistaken about that, then what were you trying to say by suggesting that such beliefs only belong to a minor subset of religious people?
 
2014-01-20 01:28:00 AM

doglover: There's no knives in exorcisms. CLEARLY she was attempting a little of the ol' Aztec mojo.


THIS. Sounds more like ritual sacrifice. The cops may be using the exorcism line to lure any other cult members into a false sense of security.
 
2014-01-20 01:28:40 AM

ornithopter: What, you don't have Scientology where you are?


I live in Tampa, so yes.
 
2014-01-20 01:29:53 AM

wademh: Magruda: wademh: And that was the point, to counter the claim that it is irrational to believe in things without objective support. Instead, it is entirely rational to trust ones own feelings when one has personally validated the reliability of ones feelings.

You are free to believe however you chose. Please keep in mind however that this in no way resembles any type of scientific method and means nothing to anyone but you.

And what is holy or sacred about the scientific method? Nothing. The only reason to hold the scientific method up as a standard of excellence is its record of success. By the self-same criteria, if an individual experiences a record of success with their own us of Taro cards, they have an identical reason to believe their method. It would indeed be comforting to have some other external basis, like say sacred scripture of some sort, that established reliability for us, but in my experience we don't have any such thing. So empirically, we trust that which proves trustworthy to us. And that is the exact reason for trusting science. It is not a reason to blanketly distrust anything that is not science.


So you know nothing about the scientific method? Thanks for commenting about a subject you are ignorant.
 
2014-01-20 01:41:11 AM

wademh: It is not confirmation bias. I'm referring to those things that which I believed were true prior to having evidence that have later turned out to be true when evidence became available. If you think that is confirmation bias you need to consult a dictionary.


And what of the things you believed to be true, but turned out NOT to be?  Or are there none to speak of?


wademh: I am agnostic about that which I cannot know.


Circular definition aside, that's fine by me.  I am also agnostic about the supernatural.  However, this position is epistemological only, and has nothing to do with belief in any god, abstract or otherwise. In short, agnostic or not, you either hold in your mind the belief that (for example) Spinoza's god exists, or you don't.  And if you hold that belief, you should be ready to defend it rationally against the argument from non-belief, the problem of evil, the lack of empirical evidence for it, and to explain your reason for supporting a claim which cannot be falsified.

wademh: I do suppose that if there is a god, we have a poor handle on her.


Why do you assume this?  Because it's the only rational circumstance among infinite available descriptions under which anything that remotely satisfies the general definition of "god" can exist?  Doesn't that seem like special pleading?

wademh: You also make it clear you are asserting that belief in Angels or Fairies, presumably Leprechauns and Big Foot are symptomatic of mental illness. It's reasonable to ask you to provide a scientific framework for your claims based on the premise that you reject such beliefs from a scientific framework.


Without defending the "mental illness" portion of this argument (since it's clearly hyperbole) Bigfoot, angels, fairies, leprechauns and gods all have precisely the same amount of rational evidence to support their existence.  The ONLY reason one of these is ever elevated above the others for philosophical/metaphysical purposes is that its proponents have a stronger desire for it to be real.  So while it may be unfair to call religion a "mental illness" considering that the latest research suggests that a large portion of us have brains that are hard-wired to want it, the fact remains that all belief in gods can be effectively reduced to the fallacy of Wishful Thinking.

wademh: Very little of what goes on in our heads has rational foundations and any expectation otherwise, for other or delusions about ourselves, are almost certainly in error.


Given that our daily thoughts are almost completely dominated by base primal urges like food, sex, and other bodily functions, the above statement is a bit too obvious to be insightful.  Be that as it may, the tiny amount of brain activity that we as a species manage to muster in the general direction of rational thought is almost entirely responsible for all of humanity's progress up to this point, so I wouldn't be so quick to discount it.
 
2014-01-20 01:42:08 AM

trappedspirit: I nominate you to stick your hand in the nearest large Hadron collider. There will be a certificate of accomplishment.


I'm sorry, did I make you angry somehow?  Would you like to talk about it?
 
2014-01-20 01:46:27 AM

Magruda: wademh: Magruda: wademh: And that was the point, to counter the claim that it is irrational to believe in things without objective support. Instead, it is entirely rational to trust ones own feelings when one has personally validated the reliability of ones feelings.

You are free to believe however you chose. Please keep in mind however that this in no way resembles any type of scientific method and means nothing to anyone but you.

And what is holy or sacred about the scientific method? Nothing. The only reason to hold the scientific method up as a standard of excellence is its record of success. By the self-same criteria, if an individual experiences a record of success with their own us of Taro cards, they have an identical reason to believe their method. It would indeed be comforting to have some other external basis, like say sacred scripture of some sort, that established reliability for us, but in my experience we don't have any such thing. So empirically, we trust that which proves trustworthy to us. And that is the exact reason for trusting science. It is not a reason to blanketly distrust anything that is not science.

So you know nothing about the scientific method? Thanks for commenting about a subject you are ignorant.


Your facility with obtuse non sequiturs is remarkable and at least consistent, if irrelevant.
 
2014-01-20 01:52:39 AM

wademh: Magruda: wademh: Magruda: wademh: And that was the point, to counter the claim that it is irrational to believe in things without objective support. Instead, it is entirely rational to trust ones own feelings when one has personally validated the reliability of ones feelings.

You are free to believe however you chose. Please keep in mind however that this in no way resembles any type of scientific method and means nothing to anyone but you.

And what is holy or sacred about the scientific method? Nothing. The only reason to hold the scientific method up as a standard of excellence is its record of success. By the self-same criteria, if an individual experiences a record of success with their own us of Taro cards, they have an identical reason to believe their method. It would indeed be comforting to have some other external basis, like say sacred scripture of some sort, that established reliability for us, but in my experience we don't have any such thing. So empirically, we trust that which proves trustworthy to us. And that is the exact reason for trusting science. It is not a reason to blanketly distrust anything that is not science.

So you know nothing about the scientific method? Thanks for commenting about a subject you are ignorant.

Your facility with obtuse non sequiturs is remarkable and at least consistent, if irrelevant.


Comparing the scientific method to Tarot cards as if the two were constructed upon equally sound foundations?  Where oh where is abb3w when you need him?
 
2014-01-20 02:03:37 AM

Snarfangel: God tells you to sacrifice your child in 4000BC: You get your story in the Bible.
God tells you to sacrifice you child in 2014 AD: OMG, you are a criminal!

/Apparently, the only difference between a saint and a psychotic is a few millennia.


well once you believe in things that do not and could not exist you've already taken the big leap in logic.
the next one is just a baby step.
 
2014-01-20 02:29:21 AM
Z-clipped: wademh: It is not confirmation bias. I'm referring to those things that which I believed were true prior to having evidence that have later turned out to be true when evidence became available. If you think that is confirmation bias you need to consult a dictionary.

And what of the things you believed to be true, but turned out NOT to be?  Or are there none to speak of?

Few. But as I said in unquoted context, I'm fairly conservative in what I believe and how often I believe things prior to strong evidence. But the personal nature of my account is beside the primary point. Science is respected and trusted because of its track record, not for other reasons that are anything other than assertions.

wademh: I am agnostic about that which I cannot know.

Circular definition aside, that's fine by me.  I am also agnostic about the supernatural.  However, this position is epistemological only, and has nothing to do with belief in any god, abstract or otherwise. In short, agnostic or not, you either hold in your mind the belief that (for example) Spinoza's god exists, or you don't.  And if you hold that belief, you should be ready to defend it rationally against the argument from non-belief, the problem of evil, the lack of empirical evidence for it, and to explain your reason for supporting a claim which cannot be falsified.

I can, someday I may entertain you with it. In some other thread.

wademh: I do suppose that if there is a god, we have a poor handle on her.

Why do you assume this?  Because it's the only rational circumstance among infinite available descriptions under which anything that remotely satisfies the general definition of "god" can exist?  Doesn't that seem like special pleading?

I presume that because the notions that I've seen elaborated with much specificity I don't think work. But I believe I understand enough of human nature to know why people add silly details to what they believe so their elaborations are expected. Further, my understanding of science leaves little room for any gods that would be especially comprehensible to humans. And lastly, why should any gods be understandable to humans?

It isn't special pleading as I'm not arguing for the existence of gods. I'm am however not forcing myself into convenient dichotomies of certainty. As a scientist I pursue as much certainty as I can but stop before I go past what I can know.

wademh: You also make it clear you are asserting that belief in Angels or Fairies, presumably Leprechauns and Big Foot are symptomatic of mental illness. It's reasonable to ask you to provide a scientific framework for your claims based on the premise that you reject such beliefs from a scientific framework.

Without defending the "mental illness" portion of this argument (since it's clearly hyperbole) Bigfoot, angels, fairies, leprechauns and gods all have precisely the same amount of rational evidence to support their existence.  The ONLY reason one of these is ever elevated above the others for philosophical/metaphysical purposes is that its proponents have a stronger desire for it to be real.  So while it may be unfair to call religion a "mental illness" considering that the latest research suggests that a large portion of us have brains that are hard-wired to want it, the fact remains that all belief in gods can be effectively reduced to the fallacy of Wishful Thinking.

The problem remains that while many beliefs are Wishful Thinking, that can be used to establish so about specific beliefs. Many men are lying dogs when it comes to women, and for reasons that can be scientifically rationalized, that is inadequate to conclude about specific men.
 
2014-01-20 02:44:04 AM

Z-clipped: wademh: Magruda: wademh: Magruda: wademh: And that was the point, to counter the claim that it is irrational to believe in things without objective support. Instead, it is entirely rational to trust ones own feelings when one has personally validated the reliability of ones feelings.

You are free to believe however you chose. Please keep in mind however that this in no way resembles any type of scientific method and means nothing to anyone but you.

And what is holy or sacred about the scientific method? Nothing. The only reason to hold the scientific method up as a standard of excellence is its record of success. By the self-same criteria, if an individual experiences a record of success with their own us of Taro cards, they have an identical reason to believe their method. It would indeed be comforting to have some other external basis, like say sacred scripture of some sort, that established reliability for us, but in my experience we don't have any such thing. So empirically, we trust that which proves trustworthy to us. And that is the exact reason for trusting science. It is not a reason to blanketly distrust anything that is not science.

So you know nothing about the scientific method? Thanks for commenting about a subject you are ignorant.

Your facility with obtuse non sequiturs is remarkable and at least consistent, if irrelevant.

Comparing the scientific method to Tarot cards as if the two were constructed upon equally sound foundations?  Where oh where is abb3w when you need him?


I did not compare the scientific method to Tarot cards. I did note that should someone have had excellent success with Tarot cards, they would have same foundation for trusting them as one has with science, namely that it has excellent success. Perhaps you'll note that this is a hypothetical, and perhaps you'll reflect on the fact that in general people do not have remarkable success with Tarot cards. Then you might be able to come up with the actual point. Think about why science is held up as a standard of excellence.

Some seem to adopt a foundation epistemology that establishes naturalism axiomatically. But that is no more legitimate than asserting theism axiomatically or any other axiom. It's a starting assumption and so cannot be proven. But if one begins with empiricism, and ultimately everybody does adopt empiricism at some level, you can reach naturalism as an empirically valid foundation due to its success. And if you dissect peoples epistemology, to the extent they have a semi-coherent one, most atheists claim to have this empiricist foundation. However, by the same principles that lead them to reject theism and adopt philosophical naturalism, the principle of following what is empirically successful, you would have to accept Tarot cards if they proved reliable.
 
2014-01-20 03:01:15 AM

wademh: Few.


Confirmation bias.

wademh: Science is respected and trusted because of its track record, not for other reasons that are anything other than assertions.


Incorrect.  Science, and its methods, are based upon sound logical reasoning, which is in turn founded upon mathematics, which is founded upon some very few base assumptions, beginning with pvq <-> qvp.  Pretending that science came from an intellectual vacuum is disingenuous.  It has an extremely strong empirical foundation of credibility.

wademh: I can, someday I may entertain you with it. In some other thread.


So you're saying you're a theist, in addition to being an agnostic?

wademh: Further, my understanding of science leaves little room for any gods that would be especially comprehensible to humans.


So, now that you've willingly used empirical evidence to eliminate the possibility of all gods except the totally incomprehensible ones, what difference is there between a reality in which a completely abstract god exists, and one in which that god doesn't?  I submit that there is none.

wademh: And lastly, why should any gods be understandable to humans?


In order to ask this question, you must first answer:  Why should any gods be, at all?

wademh: I'm am however not forcing myself into convenient dichotomies of certainty.


Again, you're confusing knowledge with belief.  The dichotomy of belief vs. non-belief is not merely convenient- it is required.  You are either a theist, or an atheist.  Taken in the broadest sense of the terms, there is no in-between.

wademh: The problem remains that while many beliefs are Wishful Thinking, that can be used to establish so about specific beliefs.


I'm not sure what you're trying to say here.  I stand by the assertion that belief in the existence of that which has exactly zero empirical evidence to support it must come down to some form of wishful thinking, and that there is no qualitative difference between believing in an abstract god and believing in say, Santa Claus.  Both can be dismissed on precisely equal terms.

wademh: Many men are lying dogs when it comes to women, and for reasons that can be scientifically rationalized, that is inadequate to conclude about specific men.


This is not an ontology, which is what we're discussing.  Again, I'm not sure what point you're trying to make with this example, but I suspect it's irrelevant to the existence of gods.  Feel free to rephrase it if you like.
 
2014-01-20 03:24:21 AM

wademh: Think about why science is held up as a standard of excellence.


I'm well aware of why science is a highly-regarded investigative tool. It seems you are the one who should think a bit more about how it came about, and what it's founded upon. Your bald assertion that its track record is its only support is frankly silly.

wademh: Some seem to adopt a foundation epistemology that establishes naturalism axiomatically.


"Some seem to adopt", huh?  Does that kind of language fly with your publisher?

You're confusing the assumption of naturalism as an axiomatic truth with methodological naturalism, which is what science is governed by.  Science does not implicitly reject the existence of the supernatural.  It simply excludes it from its scope on the basis of falsifiability and that which is testable and repeatable.

The fact that "some seem" to reference the scientific method in place of empiricism when justifying their atheism doesn't limit their argument to that scope.  The idea that the burden of proof falls upon the positive claim does not spring from, nor is it limited to, the scientific process.

wademh: However, by the same principles that lead them to reject theism and adopt philosophical naturalism, the principle of following what is empirically successful, you would have to accept Tarot cards if they proved reliable.


This is circular reasoning.  IF Tarot cards proved reliable, the mechanism would either have an empirical explanation, in which case they would operate by some natural law, or not, in which case empiricism would have to be discarded as a reliable tool.  They do not prove reliable, so we are spared the implications of this hypothetical.

In light of this, you still haven't addressed the glaring issue with your earlier conclusion that your unfounded beliefs are somehow a reliable indicator of truth. I'm going to need to see some data.
 
2014-01-20 03:40:02 AM

Z-clipped: wademh: Few.

Confirmation bias.


Consult a dictionary. 

wademh: Science is respected and trusted because of its track record, not for other reasons that are anything other than assertions.

Incorrect.  Science, and its methods, are based upon sound logical reasoning, which is in turn founded upon mathematics, which is founded upon some very few base assumptions, beginning with pvq <-> qvp.  Pretending that science came from an intellectual vacuum is disingenuous.  It has an extremely strong empirical foundation of credibility.


Uh, you babble. 

wademh: I can, someday I may entertain you with it. In some other thread.

So you're saying you're a theist, in addition to being an agnostic?


And your reading comprehension isn't very impressive. I could explain "the problem of evil" but I don't chose to do so. That I can do so does not make me a theist.

wademh: Further, my understanding of science leaves little room for any gods that would be especially comprehensible to humans.

So, now that you've willingly used empirical evidence to eliminate the possibility of all gods except the totally incomprehensible ones, what difference is there between a reality in which a completely abstract god exists, and one in which that god doesn't?  I submit that there is none.

Again, your skills at reading comprehension are rather poor if you think I'm __now__ willing to use empirical evidence. I've been championing empirical evidence all along but noting that empirical evidence includes tract records.

wademh: And lastly, why should any gods be understandable to humans?

In order to ask this question, you must first answer:  Why should any gods be, at all?


You don't seem to understand logic well if you think one must do so.
Further, what the hell has _should_ got to do with anything. 

wademh: I'm am however not forcing myself into convenient dichotomies of certainty.

Again, you're confusing knowledge with belief.  The dichotomy of belief vs. non-belief is not merely convenient- it is required.  You are either a theist, or an atheist.  Taken in the broadest sense of the terms, there is no in-between.


You have conflated dichotomies of certainty with the fuzz of non belief. Dichotomies of certainty refers to belief versus disbelief. Disbelief and non-belief are not the same thing. You're not doing well here.

wademh: The problem remains that while many beliefs are Wishful Thinking, that can be used to establish so about specific beliefs.

I'm not sure what you're trying to say here.  I stand by the assertion that belief in the existence of that which has exactly zero empirical evidence to support it must come down to some form of wishful thinking, and that there is no qualitative difference between believing in an abstract god and believing ...


 ... that can't be used ...   Typo on my part.
But the demand for certain standards of empirical evidence is artificial unless you want to submit to circular justification of your epistemology.
You need reliable evidence and reliable is determined ... empirically by an individual based on their personal history. It is a myth that there exists some sacred objective standard for evidence. You don't need replication in triplicate or some p-value significance in an ANOVA. I'm not saying that anything qualifies or that nothing qualifies. I'm noting that qualifying has to be judged empirically. And you've done nothing to address that point.

Again, science is accepted because it works, not because you or I can wrap it in some tidy mathematics. Or if you have different axioms than empiricism, then you ultimately have to acknowledge that they are that, asserted truth and thus in the spirit of science indistinguishable from other asserted truth.
 
2014-01-20 03:47:42 AM

Z-clipped: wademh: Think about why science is held up as a standard of excellence.

I'm well aware of why science is a highly-regarded investigative tool. It seems you are the one who should think a bit more about how it came about, and what it's founded upon. Your bald assertion that its track record is its only support is frankly silly.

wademh: Some seem to adopt a foundation epistemology that establishes naturalism axiomatically.

"Some seem to adopt", huh?  Does that kind of language fly with your publisher?

You're confusing the assumption of naturalism as an axiomatic truth with methodological naturalism, which is what science is governed by.  Science does not implicitly reject the existence of the supernatural.  It simply excludes it from its scope on the basis of falsifiability and that which is testable and repeatable.

The fact that "some seem" to reference the scientific method in place of empiricism when justifying their atheism doesn't limit their argument to that scope.  The idea that the burden of proof falls upon the positive claim does not spring from, nor is it limited to, the scientific process.

wademh: However, by the same principles that lead them to reject theism and adopt philosophical naturalism, the principle of following what is empirically successful, you would have to accept Tarot cards if they proved reliable.

This is circular reasoning.  IF Tarot cards proved reliable, the mechanism would either have an empirical explanation, in which case they would operate by some natural law, or not, in which case empiricism would have to be discarded as a reliable tool.  They do not prove reliable, so we are spared the implications of this hypothetical.

In light of this, you still haven't addressed the glaring issue with your earlier conclusion that your unfounded beliefs are somehow a reliable indicator of truth. I'm going to need to see some data.


You're using phrases and terms from a rational discussion of epistemology but you're not quite getting them correct. This last example of you confusing what circular reasoning is is the grossest example. There's no requirement for a naturalistic mechanism to qualify as empirically valid. We don't even have a mechanism for gravity. Ponder that child. Maybe by the next thread you'll have upped your game.
 
2014-01-20 04:20:00 AM

wademh: Consult a dictionary.


The tendency to favor information that confirms your hypothesis.  Do you not understand that I'm accusing you of doing this, or are you the one that needs to consult a dictionary?

wademh: Uh, you babble.


Got nothing, huh?  Your argument is ridiculous.  If I built two bridges, one based on the sound application of modern engineering principles, and the other based on my sincere desire for toothpicks to be as strong as steel, would you be equally skeptical about walking across both bridges?  Of course you wouldn't.  Science is a trusted tool because it's based upon a strong foundation of logic and because it's withstood the test of time and scrutiny.  Stop trying to make something out of this nonsense.

wademh: And your reading comprehension isn't very impressive. I could explain "the problem of evil" but I don't chose to do so.


I didn't ask you to explain the problem of evil.  I said that if you want to profess an unfounded belief in a deity, you would have to contend with it.  You might want to check your own comprehension before belittling mine there, Sparky.

wademh: That I can do so does not make me a theist.


If you were willing to mount the defense, I assumed you were professing belief.  So, you're an atheist, then?

wademh: but noting that empirical evidence includes tract records.


You're baldly asserting this nonsense.  You have yet to support the notion.  You're also getting sloppy ("tract records"?).

wademh: Further, what the hell has _should_ got to do with anything.


You're the one who used "should".  I was just using your phrasing for parallelism.  Why must unicorns be understandable to humans?  Perhaps because in order to ask the question, we have to have some idea of what a unicorn is in the first place?  To wit, does the sentence "why must hibbityflibbityboozlewoozles be understandable to humans" mean anything?

wademh: Disbelief and non-belief are not the same thing. You're not doing well here.


Ah HA!  Now we're getting somewhere! The fact that you're even talking about "disbelief" shows that you don't understand the position you're arguing against.  Belief (theism) vs. Non-belief (atheism) is the only relevant dichotomy in this discussion.

wademh: Again, science is accepted because it works, not because you or I can wrap it in some tidy mathematics.


You can make this claim as many times as you like.  It will still be patently false, and the rest of your argument falls to pieces without it.  Sorry.  There's no way you're going to get away with equating the axioms of logic, like basic truth tables, with all other forms of unsupported assumptions, large and small.  It's an idiotic position.  I'm not buying it.
 
2014-01-20 04:33:50 AM

wademh: You're using phrases and terms from a rational discussion of epistemology but you're not quite getting them correct. This last example of you confusing what circular reasoning is is the grossest example. There's no requirement for a naturalistic mechanism to qualify as empirically valid. We don't even have a mechanism for gravity. Ponder that child. Maybe by the next thread you'll have upped your game.


And perhaps you will have gotten past the childishly misanthropic idea that agnosticism is somehow a middle ground between belief and non-belief.  If you were more intelligent, we might have managed to get to the meat of your argument, but unfortunately you couldn't get past the enormous flaws in your premises.

I'll reiterate that if your hypothesis regarding your personal unfounded beliefs being an accurate predictor of reality is any indication of your scientific prowess, I genuinely hope that you're not researching anything important as a scientist.
 
2014-01-20 09:11:46 AM

skantea: All comments about religion will reveal your personal bias.  The biatch was just plain crazy.  If has had said the moon made her do it, would we question whether the moon was bad for us?



The moon is seriously bad news. Farking anti-spirals.
 
2014-01-20 09:18:02 AM
A few miles from where I live. The craziness here is getting worse, it cant be me? Can it?
 
2014-01-20 10:16:33 AM

ghambone: I have a good friend whose parents did TWO exorcisms on her in the nineties.  They were scared because she liked The Cure.


My ex's mother didn't let her listen to the band Garbage when she was growing up because the lead singer's name is Shirley Manson and that was just way too close to Charles Manson.

Same mother turned the ex's bedroom door know around so the lock was on the other side so the ex couldn't "lock [her mother] out of [ex's] life."

Same mother was racist. She was Polish and very much "pro Polish", or rather her idealized version of Polish. She seemed to fetishize blond hair and blue eyes. We hid the fact that I'm half Mexican from her at first. We told her that I was Hawaiian. She bought it. When her mother was still trying to drive us apart she said to the ex, "(exaggerated sigh) I feel bad for you that you'll never had blond haired/ blue eyed children (since she was with me)". The ex is a brunette with hazel eyes. Which makes it extra funny on top of being racist/white supremacist.

The ex's mother and grandmother were born in Germany. Her grandmother still remembers, a bit too fondly, seeing Hitler speak in person.

Gyah. I hate thinking about how much blood, sweat, and tears I wasted on that relationship. She left me after 7 years after I gave her a calm life away from her shiatty parents and suddenly I was too boring. The married guy she started sneaking around with was much more exciting, it seems. She turned out to be just as selfish as her mother, although less outwardly insane. Apples, trees and all that.

Her mother was also Catholic and adored JP2.

Now I'm in a bad mood.

/Boobs cheer me up.
//Especially ones in a digital mail format
///I ran into her parents at the grocery store a few weeks back. That sucked. Her mother after a while started being all nice to put on the "good, 50's housewife" routine that she likes to keep on when in the public eye. She tried being all sweet to me.
//I still remember all the shiat you did to me and the ex, biatch. Fark off.
/Her dad was ok, though. Just a manchild who was easily manipulated by his wife. Pretty sure that's why she married him.
 
2014-01-20 10:43:04 AM
How is religion different from superstition?  Other than the money?
 
2014-01-20 10:49:59 AM

meanmutton: Bslim: Isn't religion awesome?

What religion do you think involves stabbing children with knives?


None I can think of.  Burning alive is OK, tho, church approved.
 
2014-01-20 11:06:21 AM

CtrlAltDestroy: Gyah. I hate thinking about how much blood, sweat, and tears I wasted on that relationship. She left me after 7 years after I gave her a calm life away from her shiatty parents and suddenly I was too boring. The married guy she started sneaking around with was much more exciting, it seems. She turned out to be just as selfish as her mother, although less outwardly insane. Apples, trees and all that.


If it makes you feel any better, it's really, really hard to overcome the way someone was raised, no matter how much you care or love them. The people we know who are very messed up usually didn't get that way after they grew up (unless they have PTSD or something like that, and even that hinges on personality traits that are ingrained when a person is young), they were damaged when they were very young children. It all becomes part of their personality and they never "get over it."

It's kind of complicated, but there's two kinds of crazy people. Some are fixable--it still takes a hell of a lot of work, but it can be done--and others never will be. Once you learn the difference, it's pretty easy to spot them.

/been there, done that. Learned the lesson.
//I was lucky, I was the first kind of crazy person. Still can't fix the second kind.
 
2014-01-20 11:45:56 AM

Inflatable Rhetoric: meanmutton: Bslim: Isn't religion awesome?

What religion do you think involves stabbing children with knives?

None I can think of.  Burning alive is OK, tho, church approved.


I forgot beheadings.  Does that count?

Is there an age limit on those, to watch or participate?  PG-14, or similar?

Tell us again how great religion is.
 
2014-01-20 11:51:43 AM

cryinoutloud: If it makes you feel any better, it's really, really hard to overcome the way someone was raised, no matter how much you care or love them. The people we know who are very messed up usually didn't get that way after they grew up (unless they have PTSD or something like that, and even that hinges on personality traits that are ingrained when a person is young), they were damaged when they were very young children. It all becomes part of their personality and they never "get over it."

It's kind of complicated, but there's two kinds of crazy people. Some are fixable--it still takes a hell of a lot of work, but it can be done--and others never will be. Once you learn the difference, it's pretty easy to spot them.

/been there, done that. Learned the lesson.
//I was lucky, I was the first kind of crazy person. Still can't fix the second kind.


Thanks, man.

Yeah, I know that. Even after I got her away from her parents it was obvious that some things were just deeply ingrained. The "catholic guilt" that her mom pounded into her came up from time to time. She had a habit of using people without really thinking about how they felt. Which was really similar to her mom. And her mom really pounded into her head the idea that once you had kids your life as a person was over. That a woman surrenders to only being a mother and will never have any other identity. I think that was her mom's way of trying to add more guilt by a passive aggressive, "Look at what you and your sister did to me" kinda thing. She saw the idea of being pregnant as some sort of punishment.

Her mother is an awful, two faced, lying, controlling, psycho biatch. Her sister used to like to team up with her mother to torment her. And then she would snap under the abuse and pressure they would act surprised and put her down for the outburst. Like she was being a bad person for no reason. Her dad was a guy who wanted to get along with everyone but he was of generally low intelligence and easily manipulated by his wife. He was a dim witted guy who was a marine in Vietnam and got a purple heart for getting shrapnel in the ass. He was basically Forrest Gump.

I tried. Gorram, I tried. But the crazy was too much to overcome. Her mother never tried an murderous exorcism like TFA, but she did cause damage.

Unfortunately it ended up changing me for the worse when it was all said and done. The fallout of that and what happened to me over the next few years wasn't good. The man I was a few years ago would be saddened by the man that I am now.

Crazy isn't localized. There's lots of collateral damage. I hope the surviving kids in the article fare well in life. They have an uphill battle.
 
2014-01-20 12:53:32 PM

Inflatable Rhetoric: How is religion different from superstition?  Other than the money?


Religion records all the superstitions, and correlates and compiles them into a moral code. Useful when in a survival situation or facing unknown hazards not subject to the laws of nature, but nowhere near as accurate as science.

/hint: human imagination is not subject to the laws of nature
//as long as humans dream, there will always be things science can't explain
///nor should it try, because it results in disappointment at best and a police state at worst
 
2014-01-20 03:24:44 PM
Religious people are all totally crazy and should be disregarded, for example Martin Luther King, or Gandhi.
 
2014-01-20 05:21:12 PM

Nacc: Religion is merely an outlet and sometimes misguided enabler of and for such behavior.

There are plenty of people this crazy without religion. Religion is not a requirement to be crazy, just as it is not a requirement to treat people decently, and with compassion.

To blame religion and say it is the cause or source of this is just as trashy as blaming anything else. There is a scourge of mental illness being heavily untreated. I suffer from poorly treated mental illness myself. I served my country. You can blame my experiences in uniform, I know some of my situations exacerbated the problem, but it was not because of my time in uniform.

Trusting people who regardless of their upbringing, religion, and political affiliation can commit many unspeakable acts is the truly difficult thing. There is no guarantee of a person being safe from these kinds of things, no promises you can make to reassure anyone.

In fact, it's usually only the crazy people who can honestly tell you they are probably not good to be around. The sane people, so to speak, are the liars and manipulators.


...when you're crazy without religion, people call you crazy.  When you're crazy with religion, people call you "Pastor".

/Or "Congressman", if you're of a political bent.
 
2014-01-20 08:33:26 PM

mamoru: PsiChick: 1) The post I replied to was calling people mentally ill. Your point was to agree with him by citing data. Why should I or anyone else think you aren't calling them mentally ill?

Also, may I ask what you were trying to imply when you made your claim that such beliefs only belong to a subset of religious fundamentalists and were not majority beliefs? It almost seems like you might think such beliefs may indicate mental illness (or at least strong irrationality that may, if not cause, at least enhance other psychopathologies), so you felt the need to point out that such beliefs don't apply to the majority (a claim which you have not supported). If I am mistaken about that, then what were you trying to say by suggesting that such beliefs only belong to a minor subset of religious people?


That whether or not it's mental illness, that's not even  right.

mamoru: PsiChick: Your point was to agree with him by citing data.

No, my point was to disagree with you because your unsupported claim was counter to polls I had seen in the news about such beliefs.

PsiChick: I've never seen data that specific.

So you have nothing to support your claim that such beliefs are not majority beliefs among Americans? I look forward to your retraction, then.


Yeah...go re-read my original point. The majority religion in the United States is Christianity. It's hard to say what percentage of American Christians are fundie.  However, it is  not hard to say that fundie!Christianity is  not the only religion out there, and stunningly enough, they do not all believe the same thing. The entire nation of India, for example, is Hindu. Do you think they believe in fundie!Christian angels and demons?
 
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