The Things That Keep Us Going in the Face of Adversity

kellym78's picture

There is a quote from Dr. Albert Ellis in which I find some solace: "By not caring too much about what people think, I'm able to think for myself and propagate ideas which are very often unpopular. And I succeed." For some reason, it makes me feel less alone in this quest to expose religion for the fraudulent and dangerous idealogy that it is. The fact is, though, that without our community of people behind us, we would never be able to continue doing this.

We've grown pretty thick skins over the past two years, but an endless stream of criticism and insults gets to you no matter who you are. In the end, our controversial approach has acheived exactly what we intended and more. We've had a ton of publicity: We've been in periodicals, tv shows, respectable radio shows, and magazines. Our website is currently the number one atheist website in the world according to Alexa, and has been number one in the US for quite some time. Of course, some of that traffic is people who hate us, but we have still managed to acheive more in the 2 years that we've been around than others have in 20. Even if you disagree with our tactics, you can't deny that we get people talking.

Now, I'm not trying to blow my own horn here, but just giving the readers some perspective. We aren't perfect--we're normal human beings who make mistakes and try to learn from them. Despite any of our successes or failures, it seems that no matter how hard we try to explain the "method behind the madness" to people, they just don't get it. That's why seeing this blog post today was refreshing and exhilirating. It's so rare that somebody, on their own, gets it.

So, here it is. This is from mindcore.blogspot.com, and he has a podcast at Podbean as well. I would like to publicly thank him for the warm, fuzzy feeling I've had all day as a result.

 

Quote:

My Public Endorsement of The Rational Response Squad


That’s right, there it is.

What is the Rational Response Squad, well in a nutshell they are a group of mostly young people (though age is no barrier) who set forth to promote rationality in our society.

Sounds pretty harmless , that is until you figure out they consider the biggest irrationality out there to be religion.

I have religious friends, many of you read this blog. Look I have no hostility towards you, but I do believe that what we think should be justifiable with evidence. This tends to put me on the side of the fence that says okay so you believe in God, why? And then as you answer about personal experiences I tend to think about well understood psychological mechanisms of misattribution, that is, to think something is causing something which it is not causing. Or you talk about the bible, and I think about how many other religions there are and how they have as much of a claim to the exclusive information on the creator as you do.

Some of you who are religious have thought this through a lot more, and I respect that. I really do, some of you have come up with philosophical ideas that back up your relatively allegorical interpretations of scripture. Personally I have no quarrel with those of you that have taken this route. But the Rational Response Squad probably does.

And I think the Rational Response Squad is awesome! They take their views to the street and the net, with equal voracity.

One of their slogans is “Believe in God, we can fix that.” To some this may seem offensive, but infused within it is the intrinsic respect for all people that presumes that you will defer to reason if confronted with reason.*

When I believed in God I seriously took the position that I should not be afraid of dispassionate and constructive argument, or books. Or course my faith did not survive my open mind. But if you're on to something real than this should not intimidate you.

They also take on other frauds like Uri Geller, the spoon bending psychic from Israel, recently found on the show Phenomenon.**

My podcast takes a street level approach to talking about science, and I will fully submit, without a single doubt. I based the Mindcore podcast on the approach of the Rational Response Squad. I have heard interviews with these guys on the Humanist Network News, and Skepticality, and I have listened to their own podcast. They talk about philosophy, history, and science like these are topics best discussed with friends wherever you are, not exclusively academic issues. These people fight for thinking, but not formal education. That takes courage, balls, and passion.

So there you have it: I endorse the Rational Response Squad!

* This is a concept that we have been trying to elucidate since day one, but we have never done so as eloquently. That is precisely the intent. The content is hiding under a facade of ridicule--some of which is genuine, and also an effective tool against irrationality, in my opinion.

**I edited this sentence to reflect current status. The original was "currently to be found on the show phenomenon."

 

 

Atheist Books

Sapient's picture

I publicly endorse Mindcore.

I publicly endorse Mindcore.

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

darth_josh's picture

The 'shock jock of

The 'shock jock of science'. lol.

Now there's a label. 

Atheist Books, purchases on Amazon support the Rational Response Squad server, which houses Celebrity Atheists.

RaspK's picture

A very good step in a very

A very good step in a very good direction; I wonder if I have the eloquence to do the same?

Count me in, either way. Smiling 

mindcore's picture

That warm fuzzy feeling is

That warm fuzzy feeling is 100% mutual.

Your life is a love story!

Zombie's picture

Let me be the first to say

Let me be the first to say to the rrs, atta boy!

And yes I know kelly is a girl but atta boy sounds better.

Morte alla tyrannus et dei

RaspK's picture

I find ironic how

I find ironic how supposedly moderate Christianity, represented by people by such people as Frank Walton, resorts to slandering and ad hominem attacks to "prove" the groups "immaturity," "irrationality," and so on.

 Having followed mindcare's example, he immediately put up a comment on my blog he never even knew existed (as far as I know) the moment I put my latest post up - advertising yet another blog of his.

Keep going with my best wishes and regards. 

Hambydammit's picture

As much as I despise

As much as I despise moderate Christianity (and I do), I have to stick up for them in this instance.  I don't think I know a single moderate who would claim Frank Wanker as one of their own.  He's definitely in a different class.

Having said that, this is an awesome endorsement, and we're proud to be making a difference.  Maybe more atheist bloggers will follow suit.  (Adopting Dr. Strangelove voice) Soon, we will have an army!

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

http://hambydammit.wordpress.com/
Books about atheism

Brian37's picture

Well,I for one am sick and

Well,I for one am sick and tired of this. You people and all your thinking.......I just found God because of the OP..............

No wait, that was just pocket lint. DAMN! Where is that spare change when you need it?

Keep it up Kelly! Cool

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37

RaspK's picture

I guess you are right - I

Hambydammit wrote:
Having said that, this is an awesome endorsement, and we're proud to be making a difference.  Maybe more atheist bloggers will follow suit.  (Adopting Dr. Strangelove voice) Soon, we will have an army!
 

I guess you are right - I wonder, though: I put up a response to mindcore on my own blog, a sort of coalition for the support of the RRS, and even a belated exit from the proverbial closet of atheism - I hope more follow!

P.S.: Better not say such things about armies - they will be prone to take them seriously. (laughter)

Sapient's picture

RaspK wrote: I guess you

RaspK wrote:

I guess you are right - I wonder, though: I put up a response to mindcore on my own blog, a sort of coalition for the support of the RRS, and even a belated exit from the proverbial closet of atheism - I hope more follow!

P.S.: Better not say such things about armies - they will be prone to take them seriously. (laughter)

Would you link us to it?

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

RaspK's picture

Sapient wrote: Would you

Sapient wrote:
Would you link us to it?

Without further ado. Wink

mindcore's picture

RaspK wrote: I find ironic

RaspK wrote:

I find ironic how supposedly moderate Christianity, represented by people by such people as Frank Walton, resorts to slandering and ad hominem attacks to "prove" the groups "immaturity," "irrationality," and so on.

Having followed mindcare's example, he immediately put up a comment on my blog he never even knew existed (as far as I know) the moment I put my latest post up - advertising yet another blog of his.

Keep going with my best wishes and regards.

I actually think he must have some kind of program that runs a search engine on the RRS. 

Your life is a love story!

RaspK's picture

I suppose it's possible that

I suppose it's possible that he set up a bot or something; what is alarming is that he did not even notice me while I didn't delve into the exact nature of my agnostic attitude - what Dawkins defined as TAP - or when I put up the RSS feed, yet he found my blog soon after I put up my response.

Sapient's picture

RaspK wrote: Sapient

RaspK wrote:

Sapient wrote:
Would you link us to it?

Without further ado. Wink

 

Nice work, my only gripe is you are allowing the comment from Wank Falton.  Just delete the fucker.

Only post about Frank Walton you need to know.

Frank Walton atheism sucks expose

 

Oh, his trick is "google alerts" he learned it by stalking us, a trick we taught him.  Today he knows when we shit... a few minutes before we find out. His obsession is evidence that we are perceived as theisms biggest threat.  Anywho... just delete the link to his slanderous blog, he's a lying dickface.  d if you feel guilty about it, don't.  He wouldn't think long before deleting anything from you that defended RRS or exposed his dishonesty.

 

 

 

 

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

RaspK's picture

You are right - hence I

You are right - hence I just deleted both his comment and my reply.

Glad you otherwise liked my piece. Smile

Nice recommendation

A nice recommendation from mindcore, considering some of the flak you guys copped a while back.

As you know, I've posted a few, mostly positive, comments about the RRS on my blog. I was also quite surprised to get a visit from Frank W. However I left his comment on my blog, for two reasons: 1. I prefer not to delete any comments good or bad; 2. I quite liked my response to him. Smiling

http://ozatheist.wordpress.com/2007/12/27/rrs-breaking-the-spell-and-smoking/

RaspK's picture

Maybe I should have done

Maybe I should have done the same, since I have a similar feeling about comments, but his was a bit like: "I have a blog against them; it's here." which added nothing to the topic, in my opinion. Frankly, having shown such luck of good faith (i.e. the principle that people do something altruistically or benevolently), he deserves little recourse.

Very, very good post, by the way. I commonly argue that one of the greatest examples of begging the question is that intelligent, rational thinking can only be the result of academic studies. Well, academies don't grow on trees - people who did not have academic degrees made them, founded on their logic and rationality, so that others could follow in a more organised way.

Sapient's picture

The only reason you'd

The only reason you'd delete the posts is to not allow libel against a friend to be used as a meme.  Were the process of getting a lawsuit against someone like him worth the time, and easier to complete I've got no less than 100 counts of libel I could launch against him.  He's committing dozens of civil and criminal crimes, all very hard to enforce.  You become law enforcement.  It's not about censorship, it's about not making your blog a haven for Christians to get away with illegal activity that will in turn convince someone of a lie. 

His actions have led us to believe that he would like to incite our murder, but doesn't have the balls to do it himself.  Any will of mine will have detailed information as to his possible involvement along, for the potential of lumping a wrongful death lawsuit on top.  It's not bad censorship if you're trying to save lives.

 

 

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

RaspK's picture

A very valid point - which

A very valid point - which is why I deleted the aforementioned post (since the blog it linked was nothing but a slanderous mish-mash of supposed argumentation).

This blog, which is not

[edited for assholery of the first degree]

ronin-dog's picture

Well done!

As well as developing a thick skin, I think you guys ("guys" includes "gals" nowdays) need to need to keep in mind that the majority of people who write to you in discontent are the type of people who like to do that sort of thing. Feedback is never a true indication of what the population thinks as the malcontents are more likely to reply than anyone else. Ask an company the percentage of complaints vs compliments that they get and even brilliant companies will tell you that they get few compliments (my company tends to display these to lift morale).

The RRS is doing a great job. They are reaching a wide audience (not just on the net) and providing a venue not just for atheists, but for those questioning their religion, those needing solace from their religion and those who are just curious (I'm sure that I have left some out). They are making lots of people think, raising awareness and making some people realize for the first time that atheists are not evil and that you don't have to be religious.

 

Oh, and comercial success has nothing to do with the social value of an organization. Otherwise we would be trying harder to find the meaning in post-it notes.

 

Zen-atheist wielding Occam's katana.

Jesus said, "Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division." - Luke 12:51

There can only be one

"By not caring too much about what people think, I'm able to think for myself and propagate ideas which are very often unpopular. And I succeed."

It's interesting that you say this than go on to say

"less alone in this quest to expose religion for the fraudulent and dangerous idealogy that it is"

Why does it bother you so much that people believe differently from you...

can't Science serve one purpose and be totally valid and Religion serve another and be equally as valid...

people probably get offended because your rhetoric is such that it seems you believe no rational person can be religious...maybe you don't know any rational religious people personally... but I do....

It's the same bigotry as religious people assuming that all atheist are immoral...maybe they don't know any moral atheist...but I do....

Why not just stick to the real issues

For example:

instead of rallying people against "Christianity" because of the American radical rights insistence that Creationism is Science (which of course it is not) which is only going to get every religious group  mobilized against you (even if they agree with you) because they'll all feel attacked by you...

mobilize people around the concept that religious belief and Science are two totally different things...many, many religious people will agree with you...even the Catholic Church, the great persecutor of scientific thought throughout the ages, admits an acceptance of evolution...that it does not nullify faith...

Science cannot be held to the standards of "belief"...because it is by definition- at it's best - based on empirical evidence Alone....provable phenomenon

Belief should not be held to the same standards as Science- Faith by one New Testament definition is- "the belief in things hoped for but not seen" it is totally the opposite of Science...and it serves a different social purpose...

I think you would find many supporters for your basic ideas and many willing to accept that you personally don't have a belief system that includes the supernatural among "religious" groups and people of faith (which are far and away the majority of humans) if they didn't feel your only goal in life is to personally attack them....

Unless that is your goal...to destroy the opposition...then you must accept their resistance as only natural ("Darwinian" if you will) and not be so surprised that they believe in their right to exist as strongly as you believe in your right to exist...

I hope that is not your goal because you raise real issues that need to be addressed but if the current climate continues to polarize the real issues will be lost amid a battle of belief systems...and no one will win...

ronin-dog's picture

We don't say that all

We don't say that all religious people are illogical all of the time. Religion is illogical and religious people are illogical when it comes to religion, no matter how logical they are in the rest of their life. (note that this fits with the definition of dellusion disorder.)

The purpose, I believe, is to educate and raise awareness. There is no specific battle against creationists, that is not the purpose of this site.

There are quite a few non-religious theists on this site that do support the cause against religion. I respect their right to their beliefs even if I disagree. It is actual religion (brainwashing people, telling them what to believe and think and keeping them ignorant) that is the problem.

The nutters in the news are just the tip of the iceberg, the visible bit. The damage done by religion goes much further.

Zen-atheist wielding Occam's katana.

Jesus said, "Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division." - Luke 12:51

HisWillness's picture

UrLord wrote:Why does it

UrLord wrote:
Why does it bother you so much that people believe differently from you...

You're equivocating. The kinds of beliefs that inform behaviour make it the behaviour that's worrisome.

UrLord wrote:
can't Science serve one purpose and be totally valid and Religion serve another and be equally as valid...

Apparently not. Science produces actual, usable knowlede, and religion produces theocracies, the dark ages, and violent fundamentalism.

UrLord wrote:
people probably get offended because your rhetoric is such that it seems you believe no rational person can be religious...maybe you don't know any rational religious people personally... but I do....

Here you're imagining that "capacity for reason" trumps "cognitive dissonance". Do you know any people who worship Apollo who are ratonal?

UrLord wrote:
Why not just stick to the real issues

Taken under consideration. Filed in the bin labelled "condescending".

UrLord wrote:
Belief should not be held to the same standards as Science

Don't you want to know if what you believe is true?

UrLord wrote:
Unless that is your goal...to destroy the opposition...then you must accept their resistance as only natural ("Darwinian" if you will) and not be so surprised that they believe in their right to exist as strongly as you believe in your right to exist...

Who's talking about existing? Produce a god (doesn't have to be a specific one, I'll take any god you happen to have handy) and this can be a rational conversation. Otherwise, you're talking about a person's right to believe in nonsense, which is their right, but it's still nonsense.

UrLord wrote:
I hope that is not your goal because you raise real issues that need to be addressed but if the current climate continues to polarize the real issues will be lost amid a battle of belief systems...and no one will win...

Don't be ridiculous. Battles about belief systems get won all the time. Women can vote, can't they? And soon they'll be making the same wage for the same work (almost there). Rosa Parks today could pick any seat on the bus she wanted. 

Saint Will: no gyration without funkstification.
fabulae! nil satis firmi video quam ob rem accipere hunc mi expediat metum. - Terence

 UrLord's response to Will:

 

UrLord's response to Will:

First

I can see by your answers that you took time to read my post and I appreciate that and your responses.

I am responding to you solely in the spirit of open, honest communication.

I wanted to answer you point for point but so many things seemed to overlap... also, I found myself caught up in trying not to offend you...which it seems to me I have...which is not my intention.  I personally believe courtesy is essential for clear discourse. And I do apologize if you feel I have been discourteous to you or your ideas.

And one important point - you are making assumptions about what I personally believe which are inaccurate. Just because I see Faith as a valid part of human experience and am respectful and understanding of Religious view points does Not mean I myself share those beliefs.

...I' decided to just start here and add other observations later.

1)      UrLord Wrote:

 “...Why not just stick to the real issues”

      Will Responded:
“Taken under consideration. Filed in the bin labeled "condescending".

UrLord’s response to Will:
Honestly, I was perplexed by your response.

I admit, it is my personal bias, that so much emotionality undermines the whole premise of being rational and creates tension instead of dialog. However, I have to conclude, based solely on my interpretation of your response, that you assumed you were somehow being dissed. I was only expressing a personal observation based upon what one of your members posted. It was not meant as anything other than that.

I can only guess, but I suspect, you have probably been attacked, often, by people who don't share your view of the world...
Proclaiming atheism in a world that is mostly made of people who have religious beliefs must draw a great deal of fire...
It appears, that you assume (I base this conclusion solely on your response) that people who (you "perceive" ) disagree with you must be belittling you..

I was not.

Will Wrote:
“ Do you know any people who worship Apollo who are rational?"

   UrLord responds:

Yes, ancient Greece.

Much of the foundations of scientific thought, of mathematics, of medicine, of the university system were laid down by the believers in the Homeric Gods-of which Apollo is one. 

Religious belief is ubiquitous in human civilization.

The Greeks even seemed to postulate the concept of string theory long before our science considered it...or could prove it mathematically....

Which leads me to a "personal" observation....

Much of the progress in science comes from people who can make that intuitive leap into the unknown and untried...

The same mental faculty, or brain function if you prefer, that allows religious faith, that ability to see connections that are not spelled out, this may be at the very heart of our ability to take scientific leaps of faith.

They may very likely be extensions of each other.

In my opinion.

 

                         

 

deludedgod's picture

Quote:can't Science serve

Quote:

can't Science serve one purpose and be totally valid and Religion serve another and be equally as valid...

This is a vapid assertion which constitutes a form of fallacy of moderation, also called "meet you in the middle fallacy", derived from Gould's NOMA. Obviously, it is absurd. Science constitutes a method by which truth claims are evaluated. Religion constitutes a set of truth claims without a method (the opposite). So, no, they cannot "both be valid". In fact, by definition, one is valid (can justify truth claims) the other not (cannot justify truth claims).

 

 

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

Books about atheism

HisWillness's picture

Your guess that I,

Your guess that I, personally, take a lot of grief for being antitheistic is accurate. I don't tend to bring it up at dinner parties. But I do like science.

Urlord wrote:
Will wrote:
Do you know any people who worship Apollo who are rational?
Yes, ancient Greece.

I mean do you know any people who worship Apollo now and who are rational? Living people ... that you know. You don't even have to know them personally.

Urlord wrote:
Religious belief is ubiquitous in human civilization.

So are slavery and organized crime. I fail to see your point.

Urlord wrote:
The Greeks even seemed to postulate the concept of string theory long before our science considered it...or could prove it mathematically....

And that would matter because ... 

Okay, I won't just leave it at that. I like math, and I like classics. So much so that I study (and have studied) them in school. So when you say "string theory", I think "multidimensional sub-atomic explanation for gravity that has yet to actually produce anything testable" and when you say "the Greeks", I can't be sure what you mean. Maybe it was one specific Greek? There were lots of wacky hypotheses.

Urlord wrote:
Much of the progress in science comes from people who can make that intuitive leap into the unknown and untried...

Or by mathematicians like Einstein. Or completely by accident. Or it was obvious the whole time, and nobody knew how to say it right. Intuition gives you the first step: what to test. You're ignoring the fact that most of those intuitive moments for scientists turn out to be dead wrong.

Urlord wrote:
The same mental faculty, or brain function if you prefer, that allows religious faith, that ability to see connections that are not spelled out, this may be at the very heart of our ability to take scientific leaps of faith.

Equating science and religion is so incredibly weak. I see that deludedgod has told you why above, but I have to add just the one thing: religious ideas aren't about intuitive thoughts that nobody has had before. They're about agreeing with untestable assertions on the strength of personal conviction alone. Engaging in pure, subjective bias is not the same thing as learning from a method that tries its hardest to remove subjective bias.

I'm not trying to be abrasive, but your "let's just be reasonable" approach when your argument is coming from what seems to be a lack of education on these subjects makes it difficult for me to be polite. I can only be straightforward about these things, because of my great enthusiasm for them. When they're misrepresented, I do get defensive. I need to defend what I see as a great way to divide reality from fairy tales.

Saint Will: no gyration without funkstification.
fabulae! nil satis firmi video quam ob rem accipere hunc mi expediat metum. - Terence

Atheism is a House of Cards Based on Blind Faith

Two little points you didn't think of...

1. Atheism is not rational.

There is no testable evidence that the process of evolution was not designed. Yet atheists blindly believe. In fact, we CAN test that processes do indeed have designers, and laws have lawmakers and law enforcers. There is no testable evidence that laws or processes just appear out of nothing. Poof!

2. Atheism requires no thought or intelligence.

A newborn baby is an atheist. A piece of wood has no belief in God.

Darwin said: "...we know of the laws impressed on matter by the Creator," (Origin of Species, p. 488)

Thus, testable evidence, Origin of Species, and rational thought is all on God's side.

The Bible Taught Atheists to Say "Test everything."

Will wrote: "...religious ideas aren't about intuitive thoughts that nobody has had before. They're about agreeing with untestable assertions on the strength of personal conviction alone."

No. Atheism is untested. You need to provide testable evidence that the process of evolution was not designed. Otherwise atheism is a blind assertion.

In contrast, Christianity does not allow blind faith:

1 Thessalonians 5:21 says "Test everything." (NIV)

Atheists are apparently trying to claim this ancient biblical verse as their own to hide their irrationality.

It is testable that processes have designers. Thus, it is logical that the process of evolution had a Designer.

Darwin said: "Have we any right to assume that the Creator works by intellectual powers like those of man?" (Origin of Species, p. 188)

 

ronin-dog's picture

Sigh... Not this again...You

Sigh... Not this again...

You don't need to prove that something is NOT so. Prove that the Flying Spagetti Monster did NOT create the universe. That is not how it works. You need to prove that someone/thing DID design anything. Human processes have designers, it is true, but natural processes do not. Ice crystals are not designed, waves crashing on the beach are not designed, seed pods are not designed, etc, etc...

Christianity is based on blind faith. If you take away belief that your book is correct you have nothing. You quote one guy saying "test everything", but you don't apply it to your own religion. How many times is the message of the bible believe or die?

My Origin of Species is differently numbered to yours so I can't look up the quote, but if you read the whole thing you will know that Darwin was against their being a designer. Even if he did believe, Origin of Species is not our bible and Darwin was not a prophet, so quoting him does not have the same impact on us as quoting the bible.

Zen-atheist wielding Occam's katana.

Jesus said, "Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division." - Luke 12:51

deludedgod's picture

Quote:Darwin said: "...we

Quote:

Darwin said: "...we know of the laws impressed on matter by the Creator," (Origin of Species, p. 488)

Sir, your dishonesty is remarkable. Here is the complete paragraph.

The Origin of Species, The Penguin English Library, Charles Darwin, MA, FRS, 1968 Edition pg 458-459:

"Authors of the highest eminence seem to be fully satisfied with the view that each species has been independatly creator. To my mind it accords better with waht we know of the laws impressed on matter by the creator that the production and extinction of the past and present inhabitants of the world should have been due to secondary causes like this determined the birth and death of an individual. When I view all beings not as special creations, but as the lineal descendancts of some few special beings which lived long before the first bed of the Silurian system was deposited, they seem to become enobled. Judging from the past, we may safely infer that not one living species will transmit its unaltered likeness to a distant futurity. And of the species now living very few will transmit progeny of any kind to a far distant futurity; for the manner in which all organic beings are grouped, shows that the greater number of species of each genus, and all the species of many genera, have left no descendants but become utterly extinct.

Now that I have exposed you has dishonest and a liar, we can move on:

Quote:

There is no testable evidence that the process of evolution was not designed.

This sentence contains so many errors at once it probably requires its own section. First all of, arguing that there is no evidence that something is not the case is a form of ad ignorantium. However, in terms of producing complex biological structures and such, the process of evolution does away with the need to impute design, being that it can explain biological structures without turning to teleology. If you wish to get into a debate about the theory of evolution, I shall be happy to do so. Be assured that I shall crush you, judging by the intelligence of your post and hence by inference your intelligence (or lack thereof). Be also assured that if you wish to get involved in a discussion about evolution, I shall immediately ask you several questions to ascertain your actual knowledge of basic biology and evolution. Because I deal with so many anti-evolutionists, I consider this a necessary process of filtration. If you cannot give a rigorous, working scientific definition of evolution or articulate the three principles of natural selection (high school knowledge), I will not even give you a second glance.

Quote:

1. Atheism is not rational.

Oh, wow. That was a crusher. All of my beliefs about the nature of reality have just been torn apart. I have never seen such a powerful argument. Why don't you try assembling an argument this time?

Quote:

. Yet atheists blindly believe

Blatantly untrue. I believe in evolution because I work in the disciple in biology, have studied evolutionary, developmental, molecular and microbiology, population genetics and evolutionary genetics. I believe in evolution because its rather hard to ignore the central theory of your discipline if you use it daily.

If you wish for an extremely basic introduction to evolution (which you clearly need):

Molecular Evolution Lecture Section IV Part ii) Homology and Evolutionary Modularity

If you ever show your face again, here is what you shall do. You shall read the aforementioned piece, which I wrote, ie it is my work. You will then have a small amount of knowledge about evolutionary biology. Therefore, I will give whatever you say a second glance. Until then, the ignorance you have demonstrated negates your ability to make arguments and informed judgements about evolutionary theory. You have absolutely no knowledge or basic understanding of biology. You have absolutely no right to pretend that you can make arguments with respect to evolution, since you lack this understanding. You haven't given me a good reason to take you seriously. If you can't answer any of the questions in this piece here, you might as well just leave:

Something that should be read by anyone who wishes to argue about evolution, especially those who would attempt to disprove it

Quote:

There is no testable evidence that laws or processes just appear out of nothing. Poof!

Indeed. However, evolution does not describe ex nihilo appearance out of nothing. In fact it describes the opposite of this process. The details I covered in the article I provided, which, as I said before, is my own. You are obviously very ignorant of what you are attempting to talk about. You clearly know nothing about basic evolutionary theory. You might as well be talking about the Lorentz equations or volume integrals. You know just as little about evolutionary theory as you do about volume integrals or the Lorentz equation. But you don't run your mouth off about those topics. Why? You are running your mouth off about a topic regarding which your ignorance is total. You have absolutely no epistemic right to do this. Please learn basic biology. You remind me of that creationist who claimed to be "familiar with evolution" and did not know what the term "gene frequency" was when I asked him. If I catch you in a similar state of ignorance, then you will be ridiculed repeatedly. I don't understand how you think you can get away with this. You clearly aren't versed in complex or even basic concepts in biology- so what makes you think you can dismiss the central theorem of a subject you know precisely nothing about? I have been dealing with creationists for years. 95% of the time the conversation goes like this:

 Creationist: I can prove evolution is false!

Me: That's rather ambitious! I suppose the first step in every argument is rigor of definition. Hence I expect you to give me a working scientific definition of evolution, the one used by biologists, and articulate the three principles of natural section so that you have demonstrated at very least a minimal basic understanding of the enormous scientific discipline you are attacking. 

Creationist: Umm....

Me: You don't know, do you?

(Akward silence)

Me: Don't you think you should at least know the conceptual definition of an enormously all-encompassing theory and body of knowledge before critiquing it? Is that really too much to ask?

(More silence)

Me: I suggest you leave this discussion before embarassing yourself further.

It's even more fun when you get them in groups:

Me (Pointing at person 1): Do you know the three fundamental principles of natural selection?

Person 1: No.

Me (Pointing at person 2): Can you tell me the distinguishing factors between the three central types of familial homology?

Person 2: No.

Me (Pointing at person 3): Can you tell me what Muller's Ratchet is?

Person 3: No

Me (Pointing at Person 4): Can you tell me what the modern synthesis is?

Person 4: No.

Me (Pointing at Person 5): Do you know what a molecular clock is?

Person 5: No

Me(Looking around at each of them in turn): Gentlemen, do any of you speak Russian, by chance?

They all shake their heads

Me: So, for example, if a group were  engage in discourse on the etymological roots and the cultural originations of the words volost or svoboda or nakau, for example, do you think you would enter the conversation?

They are silent

Me: Then what are you all doing here? 

By everything you have demonstrated thus far about the totality of your ignorance on this matter, I fully expect the conversation to go in this direction. I will be pleased if you can prove me wrong and hold your own.

Quote:

2. Atheism requires no thought or intelligence.

A newborn baby is an atheist. A piece of wood has no belief in God.

So? The mere fact that one has no knowledge of the notion of God until told is ultimately irrelevant. Furthermore, you are confusing strong atheism or active atheism with apathism. Since you probably aren't smart enough to know what that means (seriously, by your post, you've demonstrated idiocy of magnitude I scarcely encounter) you can consult a dictionary.

 

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

Books about atheism

deludedgod's picture

Quote:Atheismis

Quote:

Atheismis untested/

Untested? It's merely the negation of someone else's assertion. Are you familiar in any way, shape or form with basic burden of proof criterion?

 

Quote:

You need to provide testable evidence that the process of evolution was not designed.

This is a non sequitur from your previous assertion. I clearly can see that you have no idea what evolution is. You say we must provide evidence that "the process of evolution was not designed"? This is a bizarre statement. The theory of evolution specifically explains biological life without the need to refer to a designer! That is it's explanatory power. Furthermore, you are making an ad ignorantium statement. Seriously, you are embarassing yourself. You have no idea what th term evolution means. I suggest you read my writing on the matter and learn precisely what evolution is. You are thoroughly confused. This is looking more and more embarassing for you. Really, you might as well just shut up at this point. You know nothing about basic biology and have now demonstrated this repeatedly. You can stop now. I don't need any more demonstrations on your part to realize how idiotic you are. Once you read the scientific definition of biological evolution (which I provide) you will see why I am laughing at you for the statement you are making. You will understand once you know the definition of the notion you are attempting to critique. Until then, I suggest you take this opportunity to learn a valuable lesson. That lesson is to shut the fuck up when you don't know what you are talking about.

Quote:

Darwin said: "Have we any right to assume that the Creator works by intellectual powers like those of man?" (Origin of Species, p. 188)

Ladies and Gentlemen. This is what we call irony. Incredible irony...sidesplitting irony.

That extract from Origin of Species has become famous specifically because it blasts the teleological argument out of the water, demonstrating we cannot compare biological structures to those that we make just because they share complexity...exactly the same point that I made in the piece on evolution I wrote (which you probably won't read). In other words, demonstrating that the evolutionary process can account for biological life without turning to the notion of a designer the way our instruments do, as produced by our intellect. The fact that you would use this...is just too much. It's quite possibly the stupidest error you've made thus far.

Here is the full paragraph:

It is scarcely possible to avoid comparing the eye to a telescope. We know that this instrument has been perfected by the long-continued efforts of the highest human intellects; and we naturally infer that the eye has been formed by a somewhat analogous process. But may not this inference be presumptuous? Have we any right to assume that the Creator works by intellectual powers like those of man? If we must compare the eye to an optical instrument, we ought in imagination to take a thick layer of transparent tissue, with a nerve sensitive to light beneath, and then suppose every part of this layer to be continually changing slowly in density, so as to separate into layers of different densities and thicknesses, placed at different distances from each other, and with the surfaces of each layer slowly changing in form. Further we must suppose that there is a power always intently watching each slight accidental alteration in the transparent layers; and carefully selecting each alteration which, under varied circumstances, may in any way, or in any degree, tend to produce a distincter image. We must suppose each new state of the instrument to be multiplied by the million; and each to be preserved till a better be produced, and then the old ones to be destroyed. In living bodies, variation will cause the slight alterations, generation will multiply them almost infinitely, and natural selection will pick out with unerring skill each improvement. Let this process go on for millions on millions of years; and during each year on millions of individuals of many kinds; and may we not believe that a living optical instrument might thus be formed as superior to one of glass, as the works of the Creator are to those of man?

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

Books about atheism