Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

Agnosticism: Lazy Man's Atheism?

1242526272830»

Posts

  • Protein ShakesProtein Shakes __BANNED USERS
    edited April 2010
    Qingu wrote: »
    ajk3193 wrote: »
    I know a guy by the name of Richard Dawkins who claims to be a scientist, yet seems to be very minded in the realm of belief. I've read his book and watched him in several interviews, and for all intents and purposes he's come to believe that he's the king of the atheist agenda, I would disagree, but whatever. My problem with this school of thought is that people like Dawkins have become so enthralled in the anti-religion crusade that it seems that they've forgotten about science. Science is about discovery, experimentation and innovation, but rather it seems that some people at the fore-front of science are more concerned with engaging in juvenile arguments with the religious. My point is that I think it would be more productive and better for everyone in the long run to get back to focussing on advancement and discovery rather than just trying to convince religious people that they're wrong. If people like Dawkins spent more time in the laboratory and less time on TV and Radio, I just think that we'd be a lot better served in the picture.

    ajk
    It's difficult to focus on, say, the achievement and discovery of outer space, other planets, orbital mechanics, and relativity if a huge segment of the population believes the sun revolves around the earth and/or the sky is a solid firmament, as per the Word of Yahweh.

    Also, I'd argue the central point of science is the discovery of truth, and in the process, the weeding out of falsehood. As it turns out, most of what is described in (for example) the Bible is ... false. In some cases, such as its Mesopotamian creation myths and flood stories, spectacularly false.

    I'm just really looking forward to the day we discover aliens and they look nothing like us.

    That will basically make all organized religions crumble.

    Modern Man wrote: »
    Well, if my mom met the following criteria... I'd be in favor if waterboarding her.
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm just really looking forward to the day we discover aliens and they look nothing like us.

    That will basically make all organized religions crumble.
    Nah. They already have ready-made theologies to deal with that exigency.

    1. The aliens don't have souls and so aren't in need of salvation (like non-human animals).

    2. The aliens obviously have, or are waiting to have, their own alien Jesus.

    You can thank C.S. Lewis for popularizing #2. Seriously.

  • surrealitychecksurrealitycheck you must go on i cant go on ill go onRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Nah. They already have ready-made theologies to deal with that exigency.

    To be honest if a super advanced race came down that was not just atheist but actively dismissive of our religions, I think that would be pretty close to a deathblow. Priests lose out on authority against super clever aliens I think.

    obF2Wuw.png
  • Protein ShakesProtein Shakes __BANNED USERS
    edited April 2010
    Number 1 is pretty hard if they show clear signs of intelligence.

    Modern Man wrote: »
    Well, if my mom met the following criteria... I'd be in favor if waterboarding her.
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    They'd figure out a way to incorporate religious ideas into the new paradigm.

    That's basically what religion does over time. It's how it evolves as an ideology, by repackaging itself into whatever is the dominant worldview.

    For example, look at all the crazy Aztec and Maya shit that to this day exists in Central and South American strains of Christianity. Those people got conquered by a vastly technologically superior culture dismissive of their beliefs too; they "converted," but vestiges remain.

  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    If you think hard enough you can twist any religion to accept almost anything.

    Just look at how rich people throughout history have twisted Christianity into "Rich people deserve to be rich because they're God's elect."

    }
    "Orkses never lose a battle. If we win we win, if we die we die fightin so it don't count. If we runs for it we don't die neither, cos we can come back for annuver go, see!".
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Number 1 is pretty hard if they show clear signs of intelligence.
    We are talking about a religion one of whose founding figures urged his followers to become like "fools" and "children" for Christ.

  • Protein ShakesProtein Shakes __BANNED USERS
    edited April 2010
    Yeah, religion changes over time, but that change occurs over long periods of time.

    If intelligent aliens were discovered, that may shock them into oblivion.

    Modern Man wrote: »
    Well, if my mom met the following criteria... I'd be in favor if waterboarding her.
  • surrealitychecksurrealitycheck you must go on i cant go on ill go onRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    For example, look at all the crazy Aztec and Maya shit that to this day exists in Central and South American strains of Christianity. Those people got conquered by a vastly technologically superior culture dismissive of their beliefs too; they "converted," but vestiges remain.

    To be fair they were conquered by a supernaturalist culture. I'm assuming these aliens are pretty much materialist heroes >_>

    obF2Wuw.png
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Well ... I'm actually more curious about how religion is going to deal with transhumanism/the singularity—because I think there's a higher chance of that happening in our lifetimes than meeting smart aliens we can communicate with.

    If people do figure out how to become effectively immortal, and how to alter and transform their consciousness—or if we figure out how to create new consciousnesses just as smart as us—what would be the point of heaven? We would have saved ourselves.

  • EnigEnig a.k.a. Ansatz Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Hopefully the religious (especially extremist) will simply reject transhumanism and so fade into obscurity.

    iyjXwV5uPHHfO.jpg
    Steam (Ansatz) || Planetside 2 - Vanu (Ansatz) || GW2 officer (Ansatz.6498)
  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Qingu wrote: »
    Well ... I'm actually more curious about how religion is going to deal with transhumanism/the singularity—because I think there's a higher chance of that happening in our lifetimes than meeting smart aliens we can communicate with.

    If people do figure out how to become effectively immortal, and how to alter and transform their consciousness—or if we figure out how to create new consciousnesses just as smart as us—what would be the point of heaven? We would have saved ourselves.

    Just call it the Rapture!

    }
    "Orkses never lose a battle. If we win we win, if we die we die fightin so it don't count. If we runs for it we don't die neither, cos we can come back for annuver go, see!".
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Yis yis...

    I actually think, in many respects, our modern society has completely surpassed ancient people's expectations about heaven/"the carrot" to begin with.

    The earliest parts of the Bible were written by a group of people who thought the entire universe was about the size of the Mediterranean Sea. They believed the sky was a solid dome, and the stars were little points of light that hung from it like lamps. The most powerful weapon they were familiar with were iron chariots, which were so dreadful that they believed their deity himself would have trouble defeating them in battle. They repeated and exaggerated stories about natural disasters in ancient Egypt and attributed them to their god. They believed the reward for following this god wasn't even an "afterlife" per se (the idea of heaven would come later), but rather just getting a good harvest, a pretty wife, strong children. God promised them a "land flowing with milk and honey," which if you've ever eaten milk and honey comes across as "If you obey me I'll give you ice cream."

    If one of these ancient Hebrews was transported into my modest apartment, with my air conditioning, plumbing, magical illustionary entertainment devices, and freezer stocked full of Ben and Jerry's, they would seriously think I was a heavenly being, one of Yahweh's subservient pantheon living in "the firmament" of the Sky.

    There are wonders in my daily experiences that I don't think the ancient Hebrews ever contemplated. Meanwhile, we have nuclear weapons that make Yahweh's magic and plagues look like child's play. The world is simply a much bigger, much more fascinating, and much more dangerous place than the ancient Hebrews ever dreamed about; their religion and god have had to "grow" a great deal to accommodate the fact that reality is way cooler.

  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I wouldn't put down the ancients too much, they were pretty much the same as we are, and we're pretty adaptable. Put an Israelite from 100 bc in modern Israel and I think he'd get accustomed pretty quickly.

    Living in a modern city isn't too different from an ancient one. Its just a lot more sanitary.

    }
    "Orkses never lose a battle. If we win we win, if we die we die fightin so it don't count. If we runs for it we don't die neither, cos we can come back for annuver go, see!".
  • nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm pretty sure your hypothetical transplanted Israelite would die of an infection shortly after going totally frothing mad from culture shock.

    Carl Sagan wrote:
    The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars.
  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Eh? I've met individuals that were born in small villages without electricity or running water that had barely any contact with the outside world, they seemed to do fine

    XBLIVE: Biggestoverride
    League of Legends: override367
  • nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Eh? I've met individuals that were born in small villages without electricity or running water that had barely any contact with the outside world, they seemed to do fine

    Barely any contact with the outside world is very different from no contact at all; even if the individuals to whom you refer had zero knowledge about the specifics of modern technology, they would at least have had an idea, probably, of what a skyscraper is, for instance, and though the New York skyline might be overwhelming they would at least have the frame of reference that they are looking at large buildings. Unless hypothetical-Israelite had visited the Pyramids in Egypt (spectacularly unlikely given how much rarer travel was in the past) he would have no experience of man-made works even approaching this scale: his experience of a modern city would be like Lovecraft's description of the cyclopean monuments from At the Mountains of Madness. And I'd forgive him for assuming the supernatural here or later, when faced with internal combustion, refrigeration, flight, fission, information technology, or plumbing.

    Perhaps he wouldn't actually lose his sanity; there's no way of knowing. I'd be willing to wager a small amount that he'd be at least a bit jilted from the experience. And even then, the vast cultural gulf between modernity and the transplanted Israelite's experience might make him seem insane by our standards despite being perfectly healthy by the standards of his time.

    Carl Sagan wrote:
    The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars.
  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm just going to have to agree to disagree with you, as we've had people from islands or small tribal societies integrate into (semi) modern societies in decades past, tribes that had no idea something like a skyscraper existed

    I mean sure new york was less impressive before it was filled with cars, but the most obvious is native america children being shipped to cities for education up to the end of the 19th century

    XBLIVE: Biggestoverride
    League of Legends: override367
  • big lbig l Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I think all of this was covered in "Liar Liar".

  • Vincent GraysonVincent Grayson Frederick, MDRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Qingu wrote: »
    They'd figure out a way to incorporate religious ideas into the new paradigm.

    That's basically what religion does over time. It's how it evolves as an ideology, by repackaging itself into whatever is the dominant worldview.

    For example, look at all the crazy Aztec and Maya shit that to this day exists in Central and South American strains of Christianity. Those people got conquered by a vastly technologically superior culture dismissive of their beliefs too; they "converted," but vestiges remain.

    To be fair, Christianity is pretty much the king of this. No other religion has been as good at riding the coattails of the dominant world power(s) and then taking everything of importance in a culture and making it "work" within its own theology.

  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm just going to have to agree to disagree with you, as we've had people from islands or small tribal societies integrate into (semi) modern societies in decades past, tribes that had no idea something like a skyscraper existed

    I mean sure new york was less impressive before it was filled with cars, but the most obvious is native america children being shipped to cities for education up to the end of the 19th century
    I'd actually be fascinated by an account of a truly "uncontacted" person being thrown into a modern city.

    By "modern" I mean post-air conditioning, information age modern.

    I wonder if there has ever been something like this. There are barely any uncontacted people left, and even they might have some idea about what Western culture is like from hearsay.

Sign In or Register to comment.