Hear me out, please, I may have found a way for the incessant shit-slinging to stop and the meaningful conversations to begin.
In my time at DU, it seems to me that in this forum, we argue two from two mutually exclusive POV's simultaneously. This is why it seems we are always talking past each other, instead of to each other. Let's divide the argument between these two points-of-view; the Philosophical and the Empirical.
The Empirical argument is one of proof. Here in the real, physical world, we reply on empirical proof to determine what is real and true. When one makes a claim, the one making the claim bears the responsibility of supplying empirical evidence to support the claim. This is not my assertion, this is simply just how our world works. Yes, I simplified it, but only so that my point is clear.
The Philosophical argument is about subjective ideas. One is free to propose a whole range of ideas and arguments where the ideas and/or arguments themselves are discussed, and perhaps the probability of those ideas being true. IOW, the question of what may be. Again, simplified, for only for clarity.
Perhaps by dividing Religion into these sub-groups, the OP's automatically have the benefit of letting the readers know up front, from what point of view they are coming from. For example, were I to post a story about a water/blood/oil/(insert own choice here) dripping (insert religious artifact here) in the Empirical Religion sub-group, I would expect the conversation to be about the empirical view of the topic. Responses would need to also be from the empirical realm. Yet were I to post the same story in the Philosophical Religion sub-group, I would expect the conversation to be of the philosophical implications of such an event. Responses would be free from objective, empirically based arguments, and subjective ideas/anecdotal evidence would be the norm. In both sub-groups, we all know just what it is we are talking about. The result: meaningful conversation.
By doing this, we have alleviated the usual and expected cross-talk and nonsense we have all come to know and love. I urge you to just give it a moment of thought, and see just how the next OP you post, or argument you make in response could be strengthened or weakened if constrained to an empirical or philosophical POV, for the purposes of meaningful conversation.
Or at the least, simply note in your next OP, up front, about which POV you are coming from.
On edit: If you disagree, kindly reply with why, and include an alternative that may get us past the usual nonsense.
Now that laconicsax is gone, DU sucks more. Simple math.
I had taken a self-imposed break from DU, and I return to find the same shit show still going on. I think my break will continue.
I will keep an eye on the forums now and again, just for sentimental reasons, and will check my inbox. If anyone finds a better place to congregate and deal with the problems we face everyday as non-believers, please let me know where it is, because this is no longer it.
That the Neocons so easily rigged yet another election....
that more than half the voters in Wisconsin are deluded ignoramuses.
One of these two scenarios played out yesterday, and while it ain't over until it's over, this does not bode well for the future of this country.
A new Gallup poll measures Americans' belief in the origin of human beings, and how this belief correlates with church attendance, political party affiliation and education level. The poll was conducted by interviewing a random sample of 1,012 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
Forty six percent Americans believed in creationism, 32 percent believed in theistic evolution and 15 percent believed in evolution without any divine intervention. As the graph below shows, the percent of Americans who believe in creationism has increased slightly by 2 percent over the last 30 years. The percent of Americans who believe in evolution has also increased by 6 percent over the last 30 years while the percent of Americans who believe in theistic evolution has decreased 6 percent over the same time period.
The Most Religious Americans Are Most Likely to Be Creationists
Gallup's question wording explicitly frames the three alternatives in terms of God's involvement in the process of human development, making it less than surprising to find that the more religious the American, the more likely he or she is to choose the creationist viewpoint.
The religion, of course, is Christianity, and it has held the Western World, not just America, in its vise for nearly two millennia. Were all in thrall, like it or not, not only because its so pervasive, but because by the period of the Middle Ages it had absolute power over everyone even kings and emperors, even an army of its own and it has relinquished this power only very reluctantly and then only when forced.
We all suffer as a result: atheists, who dont want to believe in any gods, polytheists, who want to believe in all but are told they can believe in only one; Jews, who are told they need to get with the Jesus program; Christians, who are told they are worshiping Jesus the wrong way; Mormons, who are told theyre only a cult and not Christians at all.
But dont feel too sorry for the Mormons. I remember when the Mormon missionaries visited me some thirty years ago. They had many jokes to tell about Jehovahs Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists, about how they are not Christians but cults ironically, the same thing mainstream Christians say about Mormons. The same thing hurting Mitt Romney today. Mitt Romney is trapped by religion as well even as he seeks to trap the rest of us.
You might think from this that I hate religion. Ive been accused of atheism before when Ive been critical of Christian fundamentalism as though if youre not a Christian you are an atheist. But Im not, of course. Im very religious and Im not an atheist but a polytheist. For me, all gods are real. I just dont owe anything to any desert gods. So then I get accused of doing Satans work by not believing he exists.
Trapped by religion. And it aint my own. I know you feel me.
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