Will people leave god based on logic alone?

garfielddean
Posts: 3
Joined: 2009-07-13
User is offlineOffline
Will people leave god based on logic alone?

Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

1) churches are important social support groups. Anyone who is going to get people out of a religion, needs to provide alternative support.

2) the word needs to be spread. Who can blame a theist who has not heard the wisdom of atheism?

3) Different people are best taught in different ways. Some are best taught by thinking (logic), others by doing, still others by empathy. 

3a) Practical benefits of atheism need to be shown.

3b) Emotional arguments need to be provided as well as logical ones. (I believe that atheistic parables/ "miracles" need to be developed, and I have one or two ideas for countering religious stories which I hope to test out in these forums.)

How do we go beyond logic to ensure the greatest rationality possible? Surely there are other items that should be put in this list - I look forward to your suggestions.

Garfield Dean.


ClockCat
ClockCat's picture
Posts: 2265
Joined: 2009-03-26
User is offlineOffline
:3

garfielddean wrote:

Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

1) churches are important social support groups. Anyone who is going to get people out of a religion, needs to provide alternative support.

That is what hobbies are for.

garfielddean wrote:

2) the word needs to be spread. Who can blame a theist who has not heard the wisdom of atheism?

I don't know what wisdom you mean, other than simply not believing in their gods. There are any number of ways this can come about though.

garfielddean wrote:

3) Different people are best taught in different ways. Some are best taught by thinking (logic), others by doing, still others by empathy. 

How do you teach rational thought by doing or empathy? Guilt trip them into it when they condemn you knowing you are a good person?

garfielddean wrote:

3a) Practical benefits of atheism need to be shown.

3b) Emotional arguments need to be provided as well as logical ones. (I believe that atheistic parables/ "miracles" need to be developed, and I have one or two ideas for countering religious stories which I hope to test out in these forums.)

...what? Isn't that what fairy tales existed for in the first place?

garfielddean wrote:

How do we go beyond logic to ensure the greatest rationality possible? Surely there are other items that should be put in this list - I look forward to your suggestions.

Garfield Dean.

 

I would just mock terrible ideas the way they should be. If religion is known for it's ignorance and regarded as a laughingstock, less people are likely to try and go to it for comfort.

 

Any public idea is open to public scrutiny. Some of these people have forgotten that.

Theism is why we can't have nice things.


garfielddean
Posts: 3
Joined: 2009-07-13
User is offlineOffline
Thanks for your reply

Thanks for your reply ClockCat,

I agree that mockery is indeed a good way to emotionally attack religion.

Just to expand on a few points where you seemed less sure of my reasoning:

Few people will have the ability and courage to both have original thoughts, and to go against their peers. Such traits would be required for someone to become an atheist in a religious community with no atheist contacts. Even assuming the access to atheist material, considerable courage would be required.

Having people within a community that are prepared to show that an atheist way of life is respectable, would greatly help others to freely express their doubts. That is part of the "doing" way of showing how atheism can work. We need to be out of the closet, not hidden atheists.

On the other hand though, I do not think it wise for most atheists to be as strident as Richard Dawkins. If we want to get people's empathy, we have to show how we are not so different from the theists we want to help. This is fairly basic psychology.

On the issue of showing benefits of atheism, another way of looking at it is what is the disbenefit of religion? After all you are the one trying to change someone's behaviour. The one hour a week people spend in church could be regarded as going to a very special sort of show (where you get a few songs, some time to hear some wisdom, talk to "god"/yourself and talk to neigbours). Where is the harm in that?

I hope to write more in the near future, but time is pressing now.

Garfield.


The Doomed Soul
atheist
The Doomed Soul's picture
Posts: 2148
Joined: 2007-08-31
User is offlineOffline
This would be acceptable if

This would be acceptable if atheism was a religion... but its not...

garfielddean wrote:

Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

1) churches are important social support groups. Anyone who is going to get people out of a religion, needs to provide alternative support.

No, it doesnt

 

garfielddean wrote:

2) the word needs to be spread. Who can blame a theist who has not heard the wisdom of atheism?

No it doesnt, mainly because there is no word... and I can blame them, quite easily i might add

garfielddean wrote:

3) Different people are best taught in different ways. Some are best taught by thinking (logic), others by doing, still others by empathy. 

Display through intelligence... a smack up side the head "NO THEIST! THATS A BAD THEIST" ... and... what else am i missing?

... and what is this empathy you speak of?

garfielddean wrote:

3a) Practical benefits of atheism need to be shown.

I can see the commercial now... split screen, on the left side, we have Bob the Theist, on the right, Joe the Atheist... it details a typcial sunday for the pair, at the same time, Bob can be seen in his church, and Joe can be seen sleeping in... the end

garfielddean wrote:

3b) Emotional arguments need to be provided as well as logical ones. (I believe that atheistic parables/ "miracles" need to be developed, and I have one or two ideas for countering religious stories which I hope to test out in these forums.)

and i quote... "Emotion is irrelavent"

 

garfielddean wrote:

How do we go beyond logic to ensure the greatest rationality possible?

Its best that we dont... you know, history repeating itself and all...

garfielddean wrote:

Surely there are other items that should be put in this list - I look forward to your suggestions.

Garfield Dean.

all this would be acceptable if atheism was a religion, and we were recruiting/converting people... but its not...

What Would Kharn Do?


EXC
atheist
EXC's picture
Posts: 3928
Joined: 2008-01-17
User is offlineOffline
The Doomed Soul wrote:I can

garfielddean wrote:

How do we go beyond logic to ensure the greatest rationality possible? Surely there are other items that should be put in this list - I look forward to your suggestions.

1. You get to pursue your own hapiness and pleasure without guilt, fear or shame.

 

The Doomed Soul wrote:

I can see the commercial now... split screen, on the left side, we have Bob the Theist, on the right, Joe the Atheist... it details a typcial sunday for the pair, at the same time, Bob can be seen in his church, and Joe can be seen sleeping in... the end

 

Well here on the west coast, you can show us watching the NFL in our underwear.

Taxation is the price we pay for failing to build a civilized society. The higher the tax level, the greater the failure. A centrally planned totalitarian state represents a complete defeat for the civilized world, while a totally voluntary society represents its ultimate success. --Mark Skousen


butterbattle
ModeratorSuperfan
butterbattle's picture
Posts: 3945
Joined: 2008-09-12
User is offlineOffline
Welcome to the forum,

Welcome to the forum, Garfield Dean.

I agree. I don't think most theists would leave God based on logic alone. After all, usually, it's not logical reasoning that led them to believe in God in the first place. However, emotionally swindling people doesn't appeal to me either. I don't want anyone to become an atheist based on illusions and lies. So, at most, emotional and social support should be a supplement to rational thinking.

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


ZuS
atheist
ZuS's picture
Posts: 562
Joined: 2009-02-22
User is offlineOffline
garfielddean wrote:Many

garfielddean wrote:

Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

1) churches are important social support groups. Anyone who is going to get people out of a religion, needs to provide alternative support.

2) the word needs to be spread. Who can blame a theist who has not heard the wisdom of atheism?

3) Different people are best taught in different ways. Some are best taught by thinking (logic), others by doing, still others by empathy. 

3a) Practical benefits of atheism need to be shown.

3b) Emotional arguments need to be provided as well as logical ones. (I believe that atheistic parables/ "miracles" need to be developed, and I have one or two ideas for countering religious stories which I hope to test out in these forums.)

How do we go beyond logic to ensure the greatest rationality possible? Surely there are other items that should be put in this list - I look forward to your suggestions.

Garfield Dean.

I think most of those concerns are valid. I also think that we already have found many rational solutions. One of them is theism. It really doesn't get any more rational than designing a religion to mitigate some of the lapses of a secular society.

If you were to remove all religious institutions in Denmark tomorrow, here's what would happen:

1) something like 10% of population would fall straight through the social system and hit rock bottom, pulling with them deeper into poverty anyone associated with them.

2) prison population would grow and rehabilitation of ex-cons would stall, increasing crime and overall "hardness" of social relations. this would inevitably cause more general insecurity and separation of the well-off from the rest of the population by means of hiring private security firms, relocation, increasingly inaccessible private schools, etc.

3) social system in general would deteriorate, due to removal of an immense support for social initiatives in the political sphere constituted by religious organizations, institutions and even political parties.

4) unions would lose an ally in fight for humane working conditions

5) our foreign aid would go down from the miserable level that it is on today to a virtual zero.

These are just a few of many predicaments that the presence of religion keeps at bay. It is not an exaggeration to say that even immediate effects would be dramatic. An immediate effect would be deportation of some 600 Iraqi refugees who have taken up residence in Danish Protestant churches. Even in our "completely secular" society the police have to respect the right of the church to offer safe haven to people whose lives we have destroyed through pursuit of our interests. Without the churches, we would never even have heard about their suffering, never even known that they are human. Without religion the whole face of our society would change to something even uglier than it is at the moment.

As long as u are in these forums you will rarely get this perspective, since atheists in here tend to have had very bad experiences with religion and now comment in a more anti-religious than atheistic fashion.

Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion with confidence.


theTwelve
TheistTroll
theTwelve's picture
Posts: 227
Joined: 2009-07-12
User is offlineOffline
ZuS wrote:Many atheists have

ZuS wrote:
Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

If you were to remove all religious institutions in Denmark tomorrow, here's what would happen:

I'm assuming your a Dane, but I'm curious about your views here, are they based on your own views here, or the analysis of others as well? Could you direct me to where  I could find more support for your views?


dead_again
Special AgentWebsite Admin
dead_again's picture
Posts: 321
Joined: 2007-05-13
User is offlineOffline
An immediate removal of

An immediate removal of religion would indeed cause a lot of upheaval. Any sane atheist will agree. The ideal situation would be weaning the general public off of religion altogether over a long period of time and eventually the religious institutions you speak of that prop people up (such as ministries) would evolve into secular organizations.

 

Ideal situations never come to fruition though.

Your god's silence speaks loud and clear


ZuS
atheist
ZuS's picture
Posts: 562
Joined: 2009-02-22
User is offlineOffline
theTwelve wrote:ZuS

theTwelve wrote:

ZuS wrote:
Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

If you were to remove all religious institutions in Denmark tomorrow, here's what would happen:

I'm assuming your a Dane, but I'm curious about your views here, are they based on your own views here, or the analysis of others as well? Could you direct me to where  I could find more support for your views?

No time right now, but I will gather info for you on all of the points above. Just as an initial taste, I did a market survey of cheritable organizations engaged in all kinds of social work at home and abroad based here in Denmark, and here's one interesting thing that I found while talking to almost all the members of the danish charity umbrella organization ISOBRO, list of members: http://isobro.dk/index.php?mainid=3&subid=1 

All the organizations with kirke and mission in their name are based in Christian religion and have churches as HQ. There are a few based in other faith systems. They completely swamp that list and are engaged in everything from helping citizens pay for funerals of their loved ones to building schools and hospitals. Especially with the missions you will notice additional regional identification, mostly third world countries. Not only are they numerous and systematically organized, but they have a vast network of institutions they can readily engage with anywhere in the world. Just to illustrate how vital they are, a lead figure in the Danish Red Cross told me during an interview that contacting local religious institutions of any faith orientation for information and local support is a must when entering a crysis area, and this includes the missions from that list.

I will come back to your question later this evening.

Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion with confidence.


ZuS
atheist
ZuS's picture
Posts: 562
Joined: 2009-02-22
User is offlineOffline
dead_again wrote:The ideal

dead_again wrote:

The ideal situation would be weaning the general public off of religion altogether over a long period of time and eventually the religious institutions you speak of that prop people up (such as ministries) would evolve into secular organizations.

I never did any scientific research in this area, but based on my experience with institutions for social care I believe that your ideal solution could become an absolute societal nightmare. The service religious institutions provide, complete with genuine human interest for personal problems and human relation, hope and basically living together with the community day and night through good and bad - all this is completely impossible to replicate in a professional secular institution. Trust and personal relations never come in to play when the rules are passed down by politicians.

During my 15 years of experience with security business I have never been contacted by a religious social institution. I have nummerous full-time contracts with state social institutions, simply because their cliets have no respect for them and vice versa. It takes an effort to be as bad at social interraction as paid rule-bound tired and disinterested public clerks are.

Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion with confidence.


theTwelve
TheistTroll
theTwelve's picture
Posts: 227
Joined: 2009-07-12
User is offlineOffline
ZuS wrote:No time right now,

ZuS wrote:

No time right now, but I will gather info for you on all of the points above.

Thanks, I appreciate it. I had started a thread in a danish atheist forum, asking the question of how's life like in Denmark, and when I read you post, i went and linked what you claimed into that thread, to see if they felt it was a accurate (hope you don't mind).  And the responses by the danes have been hostile:

"He's badly tainted by some ideological bias or religion. The claim that "10%" would fall right through the welfare system is spurious and the figure is taken out of thin air, and the claim that "600" iraqi refugees have taken up residence in Danish Protestant churches is wrong; Only 60 iraqi "refugees" have taken up residence in a single danish church."

Or this one: "He is either a nutcase or a liar.

I also suspect he is either religious and/or extreme left wing (smearing the current center-right government)."

http://debate.atheist.net/showthread.php?p=42445

 

"


Brian37
atheistSuperfan
Brian37's picture
Posts: 15753
Joined: 2006-02-14
User is offlineOffline
garfielddean wrote:Many

garfielddean wrote:

Many atheists have shown logical arguments that a belief in god is irrational. However, many people continue to believe. Therefore more than mere logic is required to help people give up a religion. For example:

1) churches are important social support groups. Anyone who is going to get people out of a religion, needs to provide alternative support.

2) the word needs to be spread. Who can blame a theist who has not heard the wisdom of atheism?

3) Different people are best taught in different ways. Some are best taught by thinking (logic), others by doing, still others by empathy. 

3a) Practical benefits of atheism need to be shown.

3b) Emotional arguments need to be provided as well as logical ones. (I believe that atheistic parables/ "miracles" need to be developed, and I have one or two ideas for countering religious stories which I hope to test out in these forums.)

How do we go beyond logic to ensure the greatest rationality possible? Surely there are other items that should be put in this list - I look forward to your suggestions.

Garfield Dean.

Why people think worshiping a magical being IS the same as a baseball player worshiping lucky socks. WHILE it may provide an emotional crutch, and common empathy in others believing the crutch is real, it is nothing more than a placebo.

Dawkin's "moth" analogy in "The God Delusion" explains well, what is actually going on.

This "gap" answer that provides a collective as a support, IS nothing more than our evolutionary group mentality, "safty in numbers".

Evolution does not favor smarts over luck, group over individual, and bad guesses, may benefit a given individual in a species, or a collective group, it doesn't constitute reality.

The reality is that crossing your fingers may make you feel good, and that rituals may be comforting, they are not evidence of anything other than humans think, that by repeating something, they can get the same results.

"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


ZuS
atheist
ZuS's picture
Posts: 562
Joined: 2009-02-22
User is offlineOffline
theTwelve wrote:ZuS wrote:No

theTwelve wrote:

ZuS wrote:

No time right now, but I will gather info for you on all of the points above.

Thanks, I appreciate it. I had started a thread in a danish atheist forum, asking the question of how's life like in Denmark, and when I read you post, i went and linked what you claimed into that thread, to see if they felt it was a accurate (hope you don't mind).  And the responses by the danes have been hostile:

"He's badly tainted by some ideological bias or religion. The claim that "10%" would fall right through the welfare system is spurious and the figure is taken out of thin air, and the claim that "600" iraqi refugees have taken up residence in Danish Protestant churches is wrong; Only 60 iraqi "refugees" have taken up residence in a single danish church."

Or this one: "He is either a nutcase or a liar.

I also suspect he is either religious and/or extreme left wing (smearing the current center-right government)."

http://debate.atheist.net/showthread.php?p=42445

 

"

Most definitely, I would have told you the same if you asked me what the response would be. You must remember that Danmark was the country that supported invasion of Iraq back in the day and joined the effort, having the prime minister proclaim that WMDs are there and ready to be launched and that this is "not something we think, but something we know". No one has ever been held accountable, no responsible discussion on Iraq is to be seen in the news media. In fact, that same prime minister is congratulated on his numerous actions and promoted to, get this, general secretary of NATO. Message to the middle east: kindly go fuck yourselves.

An average Dane is like a goose. Go where all the other geese go, and if someone usurps their status quo imaginary world in which the Danish society is the top of the world in freedom, social status and intelligence, they will snap at you. And possibly bomb you. We are still vigorously supporting the destruction of Afghanistan and have troops there. The reporting from the war zones is down to minimum, only singing odes to the danish soldiers that die periodically.

About the number of the refugees - that is correct for that one church. This is not the first time refugees have had to ask for help from Danish religious organisations, simply because the situation looks and for those people must feel like something Jews had to go through during the 1930es. If you want feedback from some Danish forums, I can quote some where ordinary Danes suggest that the police have the Iraqis "gassed out" of the church. We are talking about small children, old men and women. Others are suggesting that we should have capital punishment reintroduced to the legal system to "take care of these issues". I don't know if the anti-foreigner and anti-muslim consensus or the assumption of always being on the side of the "good" is more frightening, when I listen to public debates.

I am not religious, but I am biased. Usually towards the position of the underdog. 2mio dead, 4.5mio displaced Iraqis do qualify. In this country, the pinnacle of social development, wealth and freedom, the only institution that would not have the Iraqis deported into a war zone and actually protects them from deportation is the Church. I find that shameful, telling and to the credit of the mentioned religious institutions.

But my comment really goes to the fundamental question that you pose: does secular society have a better answer to an empathic and reasonable community than the religious community? Your question frames the answer to assume something that makes no sense. You must step away from the idea that secular society is what comes AFTER religious. Just like a new-born is as atheistic as can be, so does the religious society arise from appropriate circumstances in a secular society. All theistic conceptions and misconceptions are atheistic in nature, bot hthese views can result in the spanish inquisition and the third reich and both theists and atheists contribute to tragedy, destruction of communal values and all the bad you see out there. In fact, most of the time you can't tell whether some attrocity is commited because of ideological or secular pragmatic reasons and you NEED the politically correct "historian" to tell you that it's those bad guys with different ideas than yours that did it - nonsense.

The important part is that many theists, and thereby implicitly atheists as well, contribute to a more empathic and reasonable community at the same time - you can't tell me you wouldn't follow Dr. King on a march just because he talks in Biblical terms and is religious. This is what we should be focusing on - understanding and approaching people we can work with, no matter where we find them. No idea or clever system will bring you closure, this is a fight we are not going to win - but we will fight it as long as the species exists. So choose your side: the geese, the cynical pragmatist, the religious zealot, or the idiots like me.

Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion with confidence.