Piece Of The Puzzle Falacy?

zoinbergs
Posts: 6
Joined: 2008-07-25
User is offlineOffline
Piece Of The Puzzle Falacy?

Hey peeps!

I just had a rather interesting discussion with a few mormons this evening, and they brought up a point that I've been hearing a lot lately.

They claim that all religions have a piece of the puzzle we call truth.  Apparently it doesn't matter if we're Mormon, Christian, or Muslim -- we all have some idea of who God, the almighty creator, really is.

Right off the bat, this makes no sense to me.  But I can't quite figure out a way to successfully verbalize my rejection of the concept.  Has anyone run into this error in thinking before, and could they help me form my thoughts into words?

I tried to explain to them that some religions are mutually exclusive from each other because they both claim the other is false, but they reiterated that as long as God the creator was involved, everybody was at least a little bit right.

At one point they claimed that all religions have a single root, an original idea of God, that has since been split up into pieces.

I'm so confused.  Please help me figure this one out if you can!


butterbattle
ModeratorSuperfan
butterbattle's picture
Posts: 3730
Joined: 2008-09-12
User is offlineOffline
If some supernatural

If some supernatural intelligence created the world, then every religion that claims a supernatural intelligence created the world is correct on at least that point. If this is what they're trying to say, then they're right. I don't see anything wrong with it.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


EXC
atheist
EXC's picture
Posts: 3142
Joined: 2008-01-17
User is offlineOffline
zoinbergs wrote:I'm so

zoinbergs wrote:

I'm so confused. 

I think we're winning. Religion is evolving.

In the recent past, pretty much all religions claimed they were the only ones that were right. Everyone else in other religions was going to hell. They can't keep members and attract new ones with this doctrine. So now as they all kind of work together and only atheists go to hell.

zoinbergs wrote:

Please help me figure this one out if you can!

Follow the money.

 

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


Luminon
SuperfanTheist
Luminon's picture
Posts: 2455
Joined: 2008-02-17
User is offlineOffline
One Rabbi in the 1st century

One Rabbi in the 1st century expressed it well:
The whole Torah is the golden rule. The rest of it is just a commentary.

As for your question Zoinbergs, try asking them why specially their religion is unique, better than the others Smiling But basically, it's not an error in thinking, it's just overestimation. There is much higher concentration of the pieces of truth elsewhere, rather than in religions.

The idea of all religions having a common origin is very familiar to me.
The outer religions have always been bitches of the kings, emperors, popes, and other such a bosses. This is why our religion was always better than theirs, and this is why they will go to Hell, because they're unbelievers.
However, the teachings of the inner circle were not so exposed to these deliberate changes, so they retained a lot of original meaning. From this meaning it is obvious by a simple comparison, that all esoteric teachings have the same origin. Alternatively, if there can not be the same origin, then they found out the same thing independently.

Esotericism was always the same or similar for many millenia, and religions are a simplified, distorted versions of it for the crowds of various nations. The story of Jesus is a good example. There have been many Jesuses before, it is a symbolic story, performed by a real, living enlightened men. It symbolizes the development of a human being, from a birth at a dirty stable, to final stages, like crucifixtion of the ego (or the Great Renunciation), then ressurection and ascension. Someone had a great effort to make the people all across history remember that scheme, because it's an allegoric instruction of how to become a perfected human. Esotericism is a science and philosophy of the evolution of consciousness. It is just right for people who don't want to bother with religious ballast, but they want to make everything better, starting with themselves.

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


HisWillness
atheistRational VIP!
HisWillness's picture
Posts: 4100
Joined: 2008-02-21
User is offlineOffline
zoinbergs wrote:They claim

zoinbergs wrote:

They claim that all religions have a piece of the puzzle we call truth.  Apparently it doesn't matter if we're Mormon, Christian, or Muslim -- we all have some idea of who God, the almighty creator, really is.

Right off the bat, this makes no sense to me.  But I can't quite figure out a way to successfully verbalize my rejection of the concept.  Has anyone run into this error in thinking before, and could they help me form my thoughts into words?

I'm not sure you're going to reach Mormons, because ... well, holy shit, let's just be frank: aren't they the ones who believe that heaven is an alien planet with chicks? Or some shit like that? Magic underwear? Anyway ...

It's a wild guess. All of it. They're making statements which, in reality, are wild guesses based on nothing. If they're okay with making wild, flailing statements and believing everything they're told by specific books, then best leave them to their books. If you want to argue with them, they're probably going to think they're winning no matter what. Logic isn't important to someone who believes that contradictions are just fine and make total sense. Or that alien Jesus is waiting for them with a harem on the heaven planet.

zoinbergs wrote:
I tried to explain to them that some religions are mutually exclusive from each other because they both claim the other is false, but they reiterated that as long as God the creator was involved, everybody was at least a little bit right.

Uh-huh. That sounds like 100% soft-sell bullshit to me. What's funny is that they're grasping at the one thing they desperately want to be true: an invisible creature that's there to spank all the people they don't like, and reward them for whatever they think is good.

Contradiction is just contradiction. If they don't get that, they're confused. Many believers go right from telling you that they can't know the mind of God to telling you exactly what God wants. They see no conflict in that, and I can't keep going after that point.

zoinbergs wrote:
At one point they claimed that all religions have a single root, an original idea of God, that has since been split up into pieces.

Wow, that's great. Where did they source that, out of their ass? I guess so, because if not, they must have more information than any anthropologist in the world working on early man. That's got to be some discovery. Oh, wait, "out of their ass" is the correct answer.

Now on to whether or not they're lying to you. I mean, technically. If they don't know that they're lying, maybe we can give them the benefit of the doubt. But if, upon closer examination, it turns out that they kinda knew they were lying, then what else are they lying about?

They must know at least a little that the one original God idea is something that someone made up. They must. It's not even a question that can be tested, so it's not like someone went out and researched an original idea of God. I mean, even though some of the original ideas of gods were a plurality of sprites and wood nymphs, that was still an idea of God? It's totally ridiculous.

If they can tell the difference in common usage between knowing something is true and believing something is true (eg. "I know her name is Sam" vs. "I believe her name is Sam&quotEye-wink then you might be able to make a dent.

Nobody would fault you for being confused. They just make stuff up. How can you compete with that? I mean, you might want to fact check, or make sure you're saying something that makes sense, but they have no such constraints. They're much more free to come up with nonsense, and because you're probably just being nice, you're giving them the benefit of the doubt that the stuff they're saying is true (or at least sincere enough to consider). The unfortunate thing is that it's just as much nonsense as it sounds! The reason it shoots forth so easily from their mouths is that they don't have to know what they're saying, they just have to believe what they're saying. It's what makes that type of  discussion so difficult.

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


puzzle games (not verified)
Posts: 4294964979
Joined: 1969-12-31
User is offlineOffline
Thanks for providing those

Thanks for providing those updates about that discussion. I love to read this type of news and updates.

Great job


GodlessMonk
atheist
GodlessMonk's picture
Posts: 58
Joined: 2009-11-23
User is offlineOffline
Of course...

Yes, all religions have a common puzzle piece... 

 

Man.

 

If people have questions they have no practical way of answering, they will hypothesize.  One such example would be:  Where did we come from?

Easy answer? A god!

 

Robb

"The general opinion is not always the perfect truth..."
- Giordano Bruno


Kavis
atheist
Kavis's picture
Posts: 191
Joined: 2008-04-17
User is offlineOffline
zoinbergs wrote:Hey peeps!I

zoinbergs wrote:

Hey peeps!

I just had a rather interesting discussion with a few mormons this evening, and they brought up a point that I've been hearing a lot lately.

They claim that all religions have a piece of the puzzle we call truth.  Apparently it doesn't matter if we're Mormon, Christian, or Muslim -- we all have some idea of who God, the almighty creator, really is.

Right off the bat, this makes no sense to me.  But I can't quite figure out a way to successfully verbalize my rejection of the concept.  Has anyone run into this error in thinking before, and could they help me form my thoughts into words?

I tried to explain to them that some religions are mutually exclusive from each other because they both claim the other is false, but they reiterated that as long as God the creator was involved, everybody was at least a little bit right.

At one point they claimed that all religions have a single root, an original idea of God, that has since been split up into pieces.

I'm so confused.  Please help me figure this one out if you can!

 

The problem with this line of argument is that it's totally round.  If you assume the premise that all religions contain some nugget of truth about the divine, then it naturally follows that all religions contain some nugget of truth about the divine.  Well, how do we know that all religions contain some nugget of truth about the divine? We know because all religions contain some nugget of truth about the divine.  See how that works?

Even if it weren't a one-stop logic trap, it provides no useful information about anything.  It's a fraction of a syllogism.  If it went somewhere, instead of folding into itself and collapsing under its own weight, it might be a useful statement. 

Example: All dogs have fur.  This isn't a useful statement, since it simply provides one fact (which may not even be true), and that fact doesn't actually differentiate dogs from any other furred life form.  It certainly doesn't provide any information about a certain dog, kind of dog, or even about fur. On the other hand...

1) All dogs have fur.

2) Raki has fur.

3) Therefore, Raki is a dog.

This is useful information, but it's still incorrect.  Raki is my cat.

Religion is a virus.
Fight the infection.


Luminon
SuperfanTheist
Luminon's picture
Posts: 2455
Joined: 2008-02-17
User is offlineOffline
I've got two questions.-

I've got two questions.
- what and where exactly are these pieces of truth in religions?
- if they are like pieces of puzzle, why won't we put them together?

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


smartypants
Superfan
smartypants's picture
Posts: 598
Joined: 2009-03-20
User is offlineOffline
Once you cancel out all the

Once you cancel out all the contradictory notions of what a god is supposed to be, you're left with a concept that is fundamentally human, and that can be a valuable thing, at least philosophically. My connection is with linguistics. Chomsky proposed that for all humans to be capable of grasping some form of verbal communication, without any understanding of the rules that govern it, to drastically simplify, there must be something hard-wired into the human brain that dictates the way language works. I'd say the same thing here. Perhaps there is something hard-wired into the human brain that determines the form of some all-powerful being. The similarities between these different concepts might be far more illuminating in terms of the human condition than their differences.


ronin-dog
Scientist
ronin-dog's picture
Posts: 419
Joined: 2007-10-18
User is offlineOffline
"All religions have an idea

"All religions have an idea of god" is a kind of obvious statement, so of course it is true. But it doesn't mean anything.

(Actually, I'm not sure about native american animism... they believe in spirits, but do they have gods?)

The idea of god is WHY they are called religions, so it is like saying "all car manufacturers make cars". A pointless statement.

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


kidvelvet
atheist
kidvelvet's picture
Posts: 162
Joined: 2010-01-15
User is offlineOffline
It's just silly.

If the best statement they can make is "Well, we all have good stuff because we all have some sort of idea of God", then that says something sad.  It really opens the door to saying "Ok, if they all have an idea, then I will join the local Presbyterian church.  After all, it's the same idea, and I don't have to wear magic underwear.  Bonus points for having a potluck every couple of weeks and booze.  Hmmm...same god, no underwear, potluck, booze.  Sorry, but you aren't making a good case for yourself Mr. Mormon.

Better yet, let's start with the idea that God even exists.  Just keep this in mind; if you convince me that God exists, I am joining the other group that has the potlucks and the booze.

Dolt:"Evolution is just a theory."
Me:"Yes, so is light and gravity. Pardon me while I flash this strobe while dropping a bowling ball on your head. This shouldn't bother you; after all, these are just theories."


RatDog
atheistSilver Member
Posts: 562
Joined: 2008-11-14
User is offlineOffline
It like they are playing a

It like they are playing a shell game.  What’s under the cup called god?  There are as many cups labeled god, but what is really under those cups.  An eternal being, something that is greater than can be imagined, or maybe something that hates all homosexuals.  They draw strength from their numbers.  From their apparent unity.  But how unanimous are they really.  Really, the ones who they are trying to fool most is themselves, and to fool themselves they never worry to much about what is under all the cups so long as all those cups are called god.  If they are forced to look under the cups, if someone points out to them that the god many people believe in is different than their own, then they try to explain it away by saying that some of the other people a just a little bit off.  Let’s say they feel god has attributes b, d, and x.  Someone points out to them that many other people believe god has attributes other the b, d, and x; and ask them how they know that their view is the correct one.  They can answer that lots of people believe in b, lots of people believe in d, and lots of people believe in x.  If many of those people don't believe in b, d, and x together then it simple means they are slightly wrong.  Everyone can make mistakes right? If someone else’s beliefs are so different that they can't reconcile them with their own, then of course those people simple aren't 'true' believers.  It is all an elaborate system to make them feel like they have more unity then they really do.