Mixed Evening
Posted: 21 December 2013 11:15 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Last night I went to a talk at the Santa Monica UU church.  It was by Peter Boghossian on Creating Atheists.  The event was well attended and I was delighted to meet a number of friends I hadn’t seen in quite a while.  However, I was quite disappointed by the talk.  It was elementary at best, repetitive and, to my mind, the author was a bit confused by the words he was discussing, like faith, belief, truth, reality, etc. 

He should have been reading our posts here so he’d have a better understanding of the philosophical bases of atheism and the above words.  LOL

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Posted: 21 December 2013 03:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Occam. - 21 December 2013 11:15 AM

Last night I went to a talk at the Santa Monica UU church.  It was by Peter Boghossian on Creating Atheists.  The event was well attended and I was delighted to meet a number of friends I hadn’t seen in quite a while.  However, I was quite disappointed by the talk.  It was elementary at best, repetitive and, to my mind, the author was a bit confused by the words he was discussing, like faith, belief, truth, reality, etc. 

He should have been reading our posts here so he’d have a better understanding of the philosophical bases of atheism and the above words.  LOL

Occam

I agree. It was not a particularly informative or entertaining talk.

One objection. He mentioned “true beliefs.” I wanted to jump up and tell him that if something is true it doesn’t require belief.

Lois

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Posted: 21 December 2013 06:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Right, and his narrow definition of faith was pretty bad, too.  We all, theists and nontheists, have a huge amount of data stored in our skulls that we haven’t been able to document by personal experimentation or documentation.  We just don’t have the time or interest to do that, so we accept most of it by faith based on what we get from authorities that we trust.  Just because the religious base their theistic faith on the bible or koran doesn’t make the word any different, only how we handle it.

He was also a bit sloppy about truth and reality.  As I see it, the universe exists independent of any of us - that’s reality.  Our view of that reality is what we assign the word “truth”.  We all have our own ideas of truth, but we have to recognize that they may not mirror reality at all accurately.  “True beliefs” seems to be an oxymoron.  I see them as along a spectrum of evidence with truth as being as far as we can go toward the evidence side, and beliefs being stuff we accept without much at all in the way of evidence.

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Posted: 23 December 2013 10:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I hear this type of sloppy thinking all the time when talking with theists. They equate not believing in gods with religion, and lack of faith with faith. Sorry to read you were subjected to the same nonsense at a supposedly secular gathering.

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Posted: 23 December 2013 02:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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DarronS - 23 December 2013 10:53 AM

I hear this type of sloppy thinking all the time when talking with theists. They equate not believing in gods with religion, and lack of faith with faith. Sorry to read you were subjected to the same nonsense at a supposedly secular gathering.

Yes, the worst part is that he was proposing a way to “convert” believers into atheists. I don’t think he’d have any better response frim believers than he did from the atheists.  He as an example of the heavy—handed approach. Even though I’m an atheist a lot of what he said made me cringe. It isn’t my kind of atheism.


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Posted: 23 December 2013 03:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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I took me a long time to move from some fairly evangelical beliefs about Christ to something approaching atheism. I didn’t get to this point because someone “converted” me, but because of slow changes reflecting my experience and outer sources of information that put religion into proper perspective.

It’s about presenting the facts and letting people decide for themselves, and it can be done in non-threatening ways.

Also in my opinion some(all?) religions maintain themselves by thriving off an adversarial relationship with other belief systems including atheism. Providing an antagonistic structure for people to feel stronger about their religion doesn’t help anyone in my opinion.

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Posted: 23 December 2013 07:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Fuzzy Logic - 23 December 2013 03:40 PM

I took me a long time to move from some fairly evangelical beliefs about Christ to something approaching atheism. I didn’t get to this point because someone “converted” me, but because of slow changes reflecting my experience and outer sources of information that put religion into proper perspective.

It’s about presenting the facts and letting people decide for themselves, and it can be done in non-threatening ways.

Also in my opinion some(all?) religions maintain themselves by thriving off an adversarial relationship with other belief systems including atheism. Providing an antagonistic structure for people to feel stronger about their religion doesn’t help anyone in my opinion.

Yes, I agree. As someone once said, you can’t talk someone out of what he wasn’t talked into.

Welcome to CFI forums.

Lois

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Posted: 25 December 2013 02:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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He spoke up here in the Bay Area this summer. After reading a brief synopsis of his intended speech, I stayed home. Glad to know for sure I made the right call.  shut eye

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Posted: 25 December 2013 02:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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You were fortunate and correct, Asanta.  I didn’t see a synopsis.  Hmmm, maybe after getting small turn-outs he decided not publish them anymore.  LOL

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Posted: 26 December 2013 04:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Occam. - 25 December 2013 02:28 PM

You were fortunate and correct, Asanta.  I didn’t see a synopsis.  Hmmm, maybe after getting small turn-outs he decided not publish them anymore.  LOL

Occam

Too bad, it was a few hours you could have spent doing something enjoyable…  smile

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Posted: 26 December 2013 06:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Well, I did enjoy seeing Lois and four atheist members of the old time Unitarian church I used to attend.  And it was fun afterwards comparing our disgust with the speaker.  LOL

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