Hitler: The Example of Christianity or a Mad Man Interpreted by Ignorance?

M
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Hitler: The Example of Christianity or a Mad Man Interpreted by Ignorance?

Browsing this forum for some time I have often seen the argument that Hitler was a Christian, as though it had some sort of meaning behind it. I often wonder what the reason is for claiming that Hitler was a Christian. I really cannot find any rational reason as to why it's such a hot topic and is used excessively among the anti-theistic/anti-Christian community. I would think that by claiming to be rational one would easily catch particular fallacies that they are so fond of pointing out to their opponents. While this topic will be about Hitler and other figures of World War Two and what I consider their actual beliefs, it must be said that the use of Hitler against Christians as a sort of evidence is a fallicious argument. Even if Hitler did believe himself to be a Christian, this sort of example does not justify claims that Christianity is in any way evil or wrong. All it really is, is a guilt by association fallacy.

But for the sake of a much larger and more interesting discussion (since uncovering the fallacy, while easy is in no way fun), let us entertain the idea that Hitler being a Christian is some sort of justifiable evidence against Christianity.  

Hopefully, I think most people here know some general history regarding Hitler. He was raised by common parents, had an abusive father who beat him and his loving Catholic mother constantly (all of these things strikingly similar to Stalin's upbringing). Adolph then went to a Christian school, being presuaded by his mother who wanted him to be a priest, where he did quite poorly. This led him to drop out and pursue the life of an artists, which brought him to a point in his life of great hardship and poverty. Psychohistorians note that he also was unable to ever paint humans. He had this complex about painting human beings and rather liked painting landscapes. 

After a long period of time he joined World War I where he found his destiny as a soilder. Afterwards, he came to power and not too long later World War II began. So that's the basic summary of it all. 

 It is said that the very fuel he used in hating the Jews and other 'unwanteds' came from his Christian beliefs; however, many who bring this objection up don't ever consider other possible factors involved; his childhood past under the abuse of his father, the fact that he began reading certain media that perpetuated the idea of a superior human race and the destruction of the Jews way before his time in office (and more during his time as a struggling arists), and his race complex by always characterizing the Jews for his problems (even going so far as to blame the fact that he couldn't attend a certain university as a plot by the Jews).

Certainly this could all be considered mere conjecture, but I have yet to hear any credible historians cite that Christianity was the source of his prejudices. In fact, if anything, these quotes by Hitler himself published in 1953 from the book called "Hitlers Table Talk:1941-1944", seem to honestly show his true face regarding Christianity. Please make note that these are copy and pasted from another source and that I did not in fact write this out, but they should be verifiable and credible nonetheless:

 

Night of 11th-12th July, 1941:

National Socialism and religion cannot exist together.... The heaviest blow that ever struck humanity was the coming of Christianity. Bolshevism is Christianity's illegitimate child. Both are inventions of the Jew. The deliberate lie in the matter of religion was introduced into the world by Christianity.... Let it not be said that Christianity brought man the life of the soul, for that evolution was in the natural order of things. (p 6 & 7)

10th October, 1941, midday:

Christianity is a rebellion against natural law, a protest against nature. Taken to its logical extreme, Christianity would mean the systematic cultivation of the human failure. (p 43)

14th October, 1941, midday:

The best thing is to let Christianity die a natural death.... When understanding of the universe has become widespread... Christian doctrine will be convicted of absurdity.... Christianity has reached the peak of absurdity.... And that's why someday its structure will collapse.... ...the only way to get rid of Christianity is to allow it to die little by little.... Christianity [is] the liar.... We'll see to it that the Churches cannot spread abroad teachings in conflict with the interests of the State. (p 49-52)

19th October, 1941, night:

 The reason why the ancient world was so pure, light and serene was that it knew nothing of the two great scourges: the pox and Christianity.

21st October, 1941, midday:

 Originally, Christianity was merely an incarnation of Bolshevism, the destroyer.... The decisive falsification of Jesus' doctrine was the work of St. Paul. He gave himself to this work... for the purposes of personal exploitation.... Didn't the world see, carried on right into the Middle Ages, the same old system of martyrs, tortures, faggots? Of old, it was in the name of Christianity. Today, it's in the name of Bolshevism. Yesterday the instigator was Saul: the instigator today, Mardochai. Saul was changed into St. Paul, and Mardochai into Karl Marx. By exterminating this pest, we shall do humanity a service of which our soldiers can have no idea. (p 63-65)

13th December, 1941, midnight:

Christianity is an invention of sick brains: one could imagine nothing more senseless, nor any more indecent way of turning the idea of the Godhead into a mockery.... [here he insults people who believe transubstantiation] .... When all is said, we have no reason to wish that the Italians and Spaniards should free themselves from the drug of Christianity. Let's be the only people who are immunised against the disease. (p 118 & 119)

14th December, 1941, midday:

Kerrl, with noblest of intentions, wanted to attempt a synthesis between National Socialism and Christianity. I don't believe the thing's possible, and I see the obstacle in Christianity itself.... Pure Christianity-- the Christianity of the catacombs-- is concerned with translating Christian doctrine into facts. It leads quite simply to the annihilation of mankind. It is merely whole-hearted Bolshevism, under a tinsel of metaphysics. (p 119 & 120)

9th April, 1942, dinner:

There is something very unhealthy about Christianity (p 339)

27th February, 1942, midday:

It would always be disagreeable for me to go down to posterity as a man who made concessions in this field. I realize that man, in his imperfection, can commit innumerable errors-- but to devote myself deliberately to errors, that is something I cannot do. I shall never come personally to terms with the Christian lie. Our epoch Uin the next 200 yearse will certainly see the end of the disease of Christianity.... My regret will have been that I couldn't... behold its demise." (p 278)


_________________

 

Which brings me to my next few points. Many Theists make the error of also blaming Atheism for the likes of Stalin, but this is absurd. Atheism, in and of itself cannot produce something becauseby definition it is a lack of belief in something; however, this does not exclude Atheists in the least bit from belief. Many state that if the world was rid of religion, many of the evils of this world would vanish. I beg to differ. As I stated earlier, Atheists are not immune to beliefs. They are not protected from ideologies. If anything, Stalin proved that the lack of belief in God does not solve these problems. He did not prove that Atheism was the problem, but simply showed that no matter how many ideologies or followings we dismiss, atrocities of all sorts will prevail. Neo-Darwinism, a much celebrated form of thought these days was one of the primary motivators behind many of these Atheistic and anti-religious men. So it is true that we cannot say, "Atheism has caused this and that", but we can certainly say that a belief was followed and that Atheists cannot hide from all beliefs.

Now, I do not wish to get into a huge debate regarding the a logical consistency of Neo-Darwinism; however, I will state that I feel it is perhaps one of the most dangerous ideologies to follow if one wishes to be logically consistent with their beliefs. I could be wrong, mind you all.

So what's the point of this rant? I wasn't really out to prove anything in favor of Hitler or in Christianity really. I wasn't out to prove that Atheism is 'wrong'. All I really posted this for was for reflection and discussion, because I honestly think that to use these examples against Theists, yet consider ones own philosophies to be nuetral is not only unfair, but dishonest and anti-intellectual in thought.

 Certainly we disagree with one another on certain positions and where our beliefs lead us, but I find that these cliches that are perpetuated against Theists, such as the Hitler myth are outrageous and false. 

 

And yes, Hitler was excommunicated. 

 

Discuss Smiling 

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


MrRage
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You should also look at this

You should also look at this thread. He's made personal attacks against Dawkins and Harris. M has dodged my multiple request for him to back up his statements with actual rebuttals of Dawkins and Harris

He's also dodging todangst's points about Luther.

He also claims, in the linked to thread, that all we do is attack cliches, but then he brings up one of the biggest cliches of all in talking about Hitler and Stalin.

I'm starting to doubt that M desires to have a genuine conversation.

Edit: Grammar


M
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I am trying to have a

I am trying to have a genuine conversation, but TodAngst cannot seem to be honest regarding his presentation. I am making a rebuttal souly off of his first reply, which he seems to believe vanished into thin air or something.

He is the one who first made the distinction between ideology and dogma; therefore I seperated them. In turn, my definition of ideology was never meant to 'sidestep' the issue of Stalin. This is mere slander. My definition of ideology was merely by what he presented within the first reply, that there is ideology and then there is dogmatic ideology. He said that ideology and religion can lead to dogmatism, but he never specified that they were mutual concepts, just that one inspired the other.

My only point about Stalin has been that he is evidence that regardless of religion or belief in a higher power, Atheists can and will commit atrocities regardless. The point of it was to show that it's irrelevant to try and make similar ideology and religion.

I agreed that Atheism was never the problem, but I never agreed with Tod that Dogmatism was inherantly wrong or that dogmatic thinking was the primary problem with Stalins or Hitlers ideologies. This was fabricated by Tod...period. I have done you a great service of quoting you and referencing each point in which you and I have said certain things so as to show the truth, while you--Tod--have done nothing but confuse the issue by claiming I am agreeing with you on certain points (which I have not), claiming I am confused and unable to read (which is ironic), and continuously slandering me.

Then you go on to say that I am dishonest, when it should be evident that you screwed yourself over in your very first reply and then attempted to frame me as the misinterpreter when your language was very clear...almost as if your first reply didn't exists.

And then when I point these out you dismiss them like they never happened.

 

So no, I have not tried to sidestep the issue, rather I have tried to get you to back your previous claims and to clarify your position. Rather, you have merely put the fault on I and then tried to tell everyone that I'm being dishonest. If this is your attempt at a debate it is no wonder people dislike debating you; not because of your intelligence (which I do not doubt you have), but because of your dishonesty and inability to confess that you messed up.

Had you corrected yourself and merely told me that you didn't mean what you said in the first reply (or merely clarified) I would have accepted that easily and not put it as a strike against you; however, you could not bring your pride down enough to do that, which is why I pushed the issue.

Therefore, I will back away from this 'debate' because it is becoming too drawn out. If you wish to claim the win for it then so be it, but I am still sure of myself that an honest reading of the debate and my critique of your first response and intepretations will be noted as correct by honest readers.

When you learn to be more honest and fair in your objections and your own errors we may debate again. Till then I suggest thinking long and hard about your methods.

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


M
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MrRage wrote:

MrRage wrote:
You should also look at this thread. He's made personal attacks against Dawkins and Harris. M has dodged my multiple request for him to back up his statements with actual rebuttals of Dawkins and Harris He's also dodging todangst's points about Luther. He also claims, in the linked to thread, that all we do is attack cliches, but then he brings up one of the biggest cliches of all in talking about Hitler and Stalin. I'm starting to doubt that M desires to have a genuine conversation. Edit: Grammar

 

I never dodged anything of the sort. I actually replied to the claims regarding Luther and said that they were irrelevant in what we were talking about at the present time. I said that the belief that luther was anti-semitic was not a bad mark on Christianity and automatically could not be assumed as such. Furthermore, as I noted beforehand, I merely stated that I was "entertaining' the idea of Luther being the only motivation behind Hitler's Jew hatred, which Tod denied as being the only motivator, but irregardless I didn't think it to be a big deal.

Then I even went on to say that Tod's argument was about the equivalent of stating that we should ban hammers because someone used a hammer to murder someone.

Furthermore, while I snapped on Dawkins, all I merely said was that he had an axe to grind, not that he was stupid or anything. And it's apparent that he wants to have a 'war' with religon and it's thinkers. My comment about Harris being a hypocrite is justified by the fact that he blames religion for most of the evils of the world, yet downplays the acts of Atheists acting under other ideologies...as though true Atheists don't do such things, but true Theists can only be extremists. While he tries to debunk 'myths' of Atheism he has no intention or care to debunk his own cliches about religion. He simply demonizes one side...just as Dawkins does.

Irregardless ,if Theists have demonized Atheists it does not make it justifiable for Atheists to do the same. In this way, it is simply hypocritical.

And I still don't see where I have brought up 'cliches' regarding Hitler and Stalin. I have never blamed them for being Atheists. I have never cast the blame on Atheism itself. You can quote me on that.

And all I said about Stalin regarding Atheism and other Communists regimes was that they were trying to form "atheistic states" that went against religion, which is why many people are still scared today when people decry religion as 'evil'. Never in that statement I made did I say "Atheism is bad!!! Theism is good!!!"

If you'd like to try and prove me wrong go right ahead, but I can promise you that you won't be able to.

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


M
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MrRage wrote: M wrote: The

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
The point is that Atheists are not immune from these things simply because they are Atheists,
OK, we get your point. I don't think we're arguing that we are immune.
M wrote:
therefore it is irrational to call for the destruction of ideologies and religion, when you yourselves are not and can never be immune from them.
What?! That's the reason to get rid of them so I won't ever take up one. So, should I not denounce murders because I myself might murder one day?

 

If you understood my point then Tod wouldn't be claiming that I'm blaming "atheism". 

Furthermore, you can never rid yourself of ideologies. Everyone has an ideology, period.  Unless you don't have a position on ANYTHING.

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


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If you'd like to prove that

If you'd like to prove that there isn't a porcelain teapot orbiting the sun go right ahead, but I can promise you won't be able to.

Matt Shizzle has been banned from the Rational Response Squad website. This event shall provide an atmosphere more conducive to social growth. - Majority of the mod team


M
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MattShizzle wrote: If you'd

MattShizzle wrote:
If you'd like to prove that there isn't a porcelain teapot orbiting the sun go right ahead, but I can promise you won't be able to.

 

Please spare what brain cells I have left after reading your unconstructive reponses. They're comitting suicide just trying to understand why you claim to be rational.

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


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M wrote: I am trying to

M wrote:

I am trying to have a genuine conversation, but TodAngst cannot seem to be honest regarding his presentation.

Please stop lying. I've demonstrated time and time again that you  aren't even able to read my posts correctly... you leap to extreme conclusions that are not warrented by a sober reading of what I actually say. I've pointed out your errors time and time again.

 

You just can't read what's before you accurately. You'll even get this wrong. 

 

"Hitler burned people like Anne Frank, for that we call him evil.
"God" burns Anne Frank eternally. For that, theists call him 'good.'


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MrRage wrote: You should

MrRage wrote:
You should also look at this thread. He's made personal attacks against Dawkins and Harris. M has dodged my multiple request for him to back up his statements with actual rebuttals of Dawkins and Harris .

I don't think he's capable of understanding their arguments, he's proven that he can't even read a brief post correctly.

Quote:
 

 He's also dodging todangst's points about Luther. He also claims, in the linked to thread, that all we do is attack cliches, but then he brings up one of the biggest cliches of all in talking about Hitler and Stalin. I'm starting to doubt that M desires to have a genuine conversation. Edit: Grammar

 

I don't think it's desire, I think he's not capable.... he needs to begin by actually reading a post accurately.  

"Hitler burned people like Anne Frank, for that we call him evil.
"God" burns Anne Frank eternally. For that, theists call him 'good.'


MrRage
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M wrote: I am trying to

M wrote:
I am trying to have a genuine conversation, but TodAngst cannot seem to be honest regarding his presentation. I am making a rebuttal souly off of his first reply, which he seems to believe vanished into thin air or something.

OK, and my response are based off of todangt's original remarks too.

M wrote:
He is the one who first made the distinction between ideology and dogma; therefore I seperated them.

That's a bizarre line of though. He claimed there was a relationship between ideology and dogma.

todangst wrote:
[The problem with communism/fascism is] dogmatic acceptance of beliefs. Both religion and ideaologies inspire such thinking, hence they are in fact the problem.
This in no way separated the two words.

M wrote:
In turn, my definition of ideology was never meant to 'sidestep' the issue of Stalin. This is mere slander.

Then why after giving a selective definition of ideology did you say:

M wrote:
This could include anything from Social Contract Theory, Socialism, Facism, your daily work out plan, etc.etc.
It was choosing a broader definition of ideology than what the topic calls for.

It isn't slander, because no one is speaking. It would be libel. It's not even that because we haven't harmed your reputation. At most we misunderstood you. But, it does look like your trying to change definitions in the middle of the conversation to suite your needs.

M wrote:
My definition of ideology was merely by what he presented within the first reply, that there is ideology and then there is dogmatic ideology. He said that ideology and religion can lead to dogmatism, but he never specified that they were mutual concepts, just that one inspired the other.

No. He makes no such distinction between "ideology" and "dogmatic ideology."

todangst wrote:
The problem is dogmatic thinking ergo provided that a person avoids dogmatism, they avoid the problem of religion/state ideology.

todangst is claiming that dogmatic thinking is a necessary condition for religious and state ideology.

M wrote:
My only point about Stalin has been that he is evidence that regardless of religion or belief in a higher power, Atheists can and will commit atrocities regardless. The point of it was to show that it's irrelevant to try and make similar ideology and religion.

Your changing your tune. Now you say "Atheist can and will commit atrocities regardless." I thought your point was, "Atheists are not immune from these things simply because they are Atheists." It's turned into we're not immune to doing atrocities, to we can and will do atrocities. If atheist can and will commit atrocities, then there is a relationship between ideology and religion.

M wrote:
I agreed that Atheism was never the problem, but I never agreed with Tod that Dogmatism was inherantly wrong or that dogmatic thinking was the primary problem with Stalins or Hitlers ideologies. This was fabricated by Tod...period. I have done you a great service of quoting you and referencing each point in which you and I have said certain things so as to show the truth, while you--Tod--have done nothing but confuse the issue by claiming I am agreeing with you on certain points (which I have not), claiming I am confused and unable to read (which is ironic), and continuously slandering me.

There's nothing ironic about it. You're basically agreeing here with todangst, if you think "that dogmatic thinking was the primary problem with Stalins or Hitlers ideologies." Now you need to see that the problem with religion is dogmatic thinking. And again there was no slander.

I'm leaving the rest of the post alone, because I think if it's going to be answered, todangst should answer it.


MrRage
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M wrote: If you understood

M wrote:
If you understood my point then Tod wouldn't be claiming that I'm blaming "atheism".

Bullshit. I've just reread todangst's posts in this thread, and he made no such claim. Either you do have poor reading comprehension, or you're lying.

M wrote:
Furthermore, you can never rid yourself of ideologies. Everyone has an ideology, period. Unless you don't have a position on ANYTHING.

You've just defined ideology to be having a position on something. If all your talking about is everyone has a belief, then no shit, Sherlock! Your whole point is basically a tautology.

M wrote:
I never dodged anything of the sort. I actually replied to the claims regarding Luther and said that they were irrelevant in what we were talking about at the present time.

The claims regarding Luther are relevant to this thread's topic.

M wrote:
I said that the belief that luther was anti-semitic was not a bad mark on Christianity and automatically could not be assumed as such.

One of the most influential Christians in history is anti-semitic, and this is not a bad mark on Christianity? Right.

M wrote:
Furthermore, as I noted beforehand, I merely stated that I was "entertaining' the idea of Luther being the only motivation behind Hitler's Jew hatred, which Tod denied as being the only motivator, but irregardless I didn't think it to be a big deal.

Of course it's not the only motivation. You're the only one saying that. todangst said "... you tell me if Luther's hatred didn't play a role in the holocaust ..." (emphasis mine.)

You didn't think it to be a big deal. Yeah, you're not dodging anything.

M wrote:
Then I even went on to say that Tod's argument was about the equivalent of stating that we should ban hammers because someone used a hammer to murder someone.

Yes, you wrote that, but todangst's argument not equivalent. One reason is he wasn't talking about banning anything. Another reason is if a whole group of people started killing people with hammers because of some influential hammer murderer, then people might start trying to persuade those with hammers to get rid of their hammers.

M wrote:
Furthermore, while I snapped on Dawkins, all I merely said was that he had an axe to grind, not that he was stupid or anything.

I didn't claim you said he was stupid. You were personally attacking him, but you were not attacking what he says.

M wrote:
And it's apparent that he wants to have a 'war' with religon and it's thinkers.

Of course it's apparent. No one is denying this. But this has nothing to do with the validity of Dawkins statements. There's a name for this sort of fallacy, I think you know what it is.

M wrote:
My comment about Harris being a hypocrite is justified by the fact that he blames religion for most of the evils of the world, yet downplays the acts of Atheists acting under other ideologies...as though true Atheists don't do such things, but true Theists can only be extremists.

It's about time you responded. I just wish you would have done it in the right thread.

Have you read any of Harris' work? If you did read, and comprehend, what Harris is saying, you wouldn't be making these claims. Did you read his article 10 myths—and 10 Truths—About Atheism? There's an answer to you objections in point #2.

But just in case you don't want to read, Harris doesn't harp on atheism so much. His book The End of Faith is about faith vs. reason. In the above article, Harris states "There is no society in human history that ever suffered because its people became too reasonable." Harris never said that "true Theists can only be extremists." Where are you getting this from?

M wrote:
While he tries to debunk 'myths' of Atheism he has no intention or care to debunk his own cliches about religion.

How do you know his intentions and cares? If he's wrong about something, why don't you set him strait? He claims to value reason, so if you show you're correct using reason then he must accept it. According to his bio, Harris has studied religion for 20 years. I find it hard to believe that his understanding of religion is a cliche.

M wrote:
He simply demonizes one side...just as Dawkins does.

There's a difference between strongly arguing against someone's beliefs, and demonizing them. Would you care to show specifically how Dawkins and Harris are simply demonizing?

M wrote:
Irregardless ,if Theists have demonized Atheists it does not make it justifiable for Atheists to do the same. In this way, it is simply hypocritical.

Of course it is.

M wrote:
And I still don't see where I have brought up 'cliches' regarding Hitler and Stalin.

The whole topic of the interactions of fascism, communism, christianity, and atheism is overplayed. It's a cliche. The first poster on this thread should have invoked Godwin's law.

M wrote:
And all I said about Stalin regarding Atheism and other Communists regimes was that they were trying to form "atheistic states" that went against religion, which is why many people are still scared today when people decry religion as 'evil'. I have never blamed them for being Atheists. I have never cast the blame on Atheism itself. You can quote me on that. Never in that statement I made did I say "Atheism is bad!!! Theism is good!!!"

If you'd like to try and prove me wrong go right ahead, but I can promise you that you won't be able to.

I understand what your saying.


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M wrote: MattShizzle

M wrote:

MattShizzle wrote:
If you'd like to prove that there isn't a porcelain teapot orbiting the sun go right ahead, but I can promise you won't be able to.

 

Please spare what brain cells I have left after reading your unconstructive reponses. They're comitting suicide just trying to understand why you claim to be rational.

M, leave MattShizzle alone. If his posts are so dangerous to your brain cells, then just don't read them.


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And I would agree that

And I would agree that people do not and cannot kill in the name of "lack of faith"; however, we could say that people can and may kill in the name of "destroying faith".

And for another point, simply because one kills in the name of something doesn't make that something automatically wrong. Many people, centuries ago used to kill by the name of the loved ones they were trying to avenge, in the name of "freedom", "liberty", "justice", etc. Certainly no name, concept, or ideology is free from abuse. We could argue, however that certain ideologies taken to their logical conclusions are in fact wrong.

And I would agree that people do not and cannot kill in the name of "lack of faith"; however, we could say that people can and may kill in the name of "destroying faith".

And for another point, simply because one kills in the name of something doesn't make that something automatically wrong. Many people, centuries ago used to kill by the name of the loved ones they were trying to avenge, in the name of "freedom", "liberty", "justice", etc. Certainly no name, concept, or ideology is free from abuse. We could argue, however that certain ideologies taken to their logical conclusions are in fact wrong.

This misses a fundamental point. Of course supposedly atheist regimes like Stalin and mao have murdered people for being religious. Why did they do it? They percieved the religious to be a threat to their power. Religious people have done that too.

but that is a side issue. As dawkins pointed out "we are not in the business of counting heads of inquity". If it comes to the point where we are matching death tolls, you know something is wrong.

Atheists have killed people for land, money, power and resources. Religious people have done that too. Supposedly atheist nations have destroyed religion because it was a threat to their power. This was gravely wrong.

But one thing that the religious have done that atheists have not is kill people out of faith. Let me explain. If an atheist who is also a murderer shoots someone, would we say he is "an evil murderer" or "an evil atheist", probably an evil murderer because this man's atheism is likely not correlated with him pulling the trigger. We know this because it is just as plausable that a Christian/murderer would kill someone, and we would also react by calling this man "an evil murderer" not "an evil christian". This can be applied to despots. Reiterating my previous points, atheists and theists have all killed for the same old reasons: Money, power and land. Nobody would deny that. This brings me to an obvious correlation mistake. Some theists state that atheists should not use things like the Spanish Inquisition and 9/11 in their arguments, because the communists (who they think were atheist) killed many more people. They fail to recognize the obvious correlation. They were tyrants because they were commnist not because they were atheist. I have heard of tyranny due to greed, power, money, land, resources and...faith. But never have I seen a causality between atheism and tyranny. And if there is an example, please point it out to me.

BUT, if a Spanish Inquisitor nails a man to a cross before lowering him into a lard vat, or an overzealous perfecti decides to burn a woman alive for witchcraft, they are acting to "cleanse the souls" of those to whom they are doing these atrocities.

The worst part about 9/11 was that the men who did it were not evil, or insane, or stupi,d or crazy, or depressed, they even thought they were rational. What they were was men of faith. Perfect faith, and that is a terrible thing to be.

So, the salient point is that faith is one of many bad institutions in the world. When Channel 4 aired Dawkins' show The root of all evil? he wanted them to change the name because he recognized that saying something is the root of all evil is a ridiculous assertion. NOBODY here is denying that atheists have done terrible things, just like a theist would not( I hope) deny that many theists have done terrible things. One thing we do have to recognize however, is that removing theism would remove many of these terrible things, because many theists have killed and died for a reason that atheists have not: faith. Therefore, removing theism would remove one of the primary reasons for atrocities in the world and throug history.

 

"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

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MrRage wrote: That's a

MrRage wrote:
That's a bizarre line of though. He claimed there was a relationship between ideology and dogma.

Yes, a relationship. Never a similarity. He makes the distinction between dogmatic ideology and ideology in his first response (in turn making a distinction between dogma and ideology) by merely the way he writes:

 

todangst wrote:

stalin killed in the name of his dogmatic ideaology. (First Reply)

...and...

todangst wrote:

You've just come close to identifying the real problem: dogmatic acceptance of beliefs. Both religion and ideaologies inspire such thinking [dogmatism], hence they are in fact the problem.

 

My emphasis. Then he goes on to say that I agree with him regarding dogmatism, but then I clearly refute that statement by my third response to him regarding dogma, yet he still insists that I am agreeing with him regarding dogmatism:

M wrote:
...though there is nothing wrong with being dogmatic in and of itself...

And I clarified on what I thought was wrong with Stalin, and it wasn't that he was dogmatic:

M wrote:
It goes to show that any ideology and any religion can be abused and that we judge whether they are abused or not on the basis of a Natural Law ("good" and "Evil"/"negative" and "positive&quotEye-wink.

 

Then he goes on to say in his first response that:

todangst wrote:
Do you want a religion without dogma? We already have a name for that: philosophy.

And this is all he says. I interpret by exactly what he wrote here...and then he goes on to accuse me of misinterpreting him:

todansgt wrote:

I never said that philosophy was immune from dogma!

You read too fast, and you make ridiculous leaps. Please slow down so that you can avoid all of these errors.

What I said was that religion sans dogma would become philosophy.[There is no indication in that first statement that this was the case] This doesn't mean that all philosophy is free from dogma,all it requires is that some philosophy is without dogma. [again, no indication of this from the first statement and it shouldn't have to be automatically inferred

You're making basic errors here because you're in a rush to attack, without bothering to first understand.

 

So instead of confessing that he did in fact make a huge generalization and did make distinct dogma and ideology, he was the one in fact being dishonest and confusing the issue. I took my cues off of what he wrote. He did not specifiy any of these things, and merely continued to add on to what he stated before, not retracting that he generalized or anything of the sort (only accused me of having the problem).

Anyone that would read those first few comments in his reply would not have interpreted to mean all the the things he elaborated on later. I continued to argue my point because he refused to correct himself and insisted that he had been saying the same things all along, when it is obvious that first statements never mentioned anything of the sort.

 

  

 

 

todangst wrote:
[The problem with communism/fascism is] dogmatic acceptance of beliefs. Both religion and ideaologies inspire such thinking, hence they are in fact the problem.

Yes, here he still makes a distinction, but merely blames ideologies and religion because they inspire dogma, which is why I stated that his argument is the equivalent of saying that we should ban hammers from society because someone used a hammer to murder someone else. And then I went on to say that Atheists are not immune from beliefs and ideologies, so this makes it even more ridiculous a claim. 

MrRage wrote:
 This in no way separated the two words.

 In fact it did, not only with his comment regarding Stalin's "dogmatic ideology", but the fact that he stated that ideology inspires dogma, not that it is dogma. Therefore I had every right to interpret two seperate definitions.

MrRage wrote:
Then why after giving a selective definition of ideology did you say:
M wrote:
This could include anything from Social Contract Theory, Socialism, Facism, your daily work out plan, etc.etc.
It was choosing a broader definition of ideology than what the topic calls for. It isn't slander, because no one is speaking. It would be libel. It's not even that because we haven't harmed your reputation. At most we misunderstood you. But, it does look like your trying to change definitions in the middle of the conversation to suite your needs.

Thank you for the correction. As for trying to change definitions I was doing nothing of the sort. I was merely taking off from common sense that he had seen a distinction between ideology and dogma regarding their definitions.

Mr.Rage wrote:
M wrote:
My definition of ideology was merely by what he presented within the first reply, that there is ideology and then there is dogmatic ideology. He said that ideology and religion can lead to dogmatism, but he never specified that they were mutual concepts, just that one inspired the other.
No. He makes no such distinction between "ideology" and "dogmatic ideology."
todangst wrote:
The problem is dogmatic thinking ergo provided that a person avoids dogmatism, they avoid the problem of religion/state ideology.
todangst is claiming that dogmatic thinking is a necessary condition for religious and state ideology.

False. It is illogical to infer such a thing from how he worded it. He either contradicting himself (or making a circular argument) then by stating that Religion/Ideology inspires dogmatism (A->B), or, as you interpret it, he is saying that because dogma is a condition of ideology/religion that therefore ideology/religion are the problems (A because of B). But if we combine them then we are saying that B because of A, but A->B. So by making the distinction I am actually making his argument better than what was presented (if it was presented in such a fashion).

 

MrRage wrote:
Your changing your tune. Now you say "Atheist can and will commit atrocities regardless." I thought your point was, "Atheists are not immune from these things simply because they are Atheists." It's turned into we're not immune to doing atrocities, to we can and will do atrocities.

No, sorry. You are figuratively putting words in my mouth. I never said that Athiests are not "immune from doing atrocities" (though the point would still stand). I said that Atheists are not immune from ideologies and dogmatism, regardless if they reject religion or not...therefore they can and have committed atrocities (and may in the future). This is also a general claim and not meant to include ALL Atheists into the paradigm.

 

MrRage wrote:
 If atheist can and will commit atrocities, then there is a relationship between ideology and religion.

Yes, there is. I may have worded that wrong when I said that. I believe my line of thought was that it is irrelevant to make them similar and then to avoid the fact that Atheists hold to ideologies. Consider myself corrected.

MrRage wrote:
There's nothing ironic about it. You're basically agreeing here with todangst, if you think "that dogmatic thinking was the primary problem with Stalins or Hitlers ideologies." Now you need to see that the problem with religion is dogmatic thinking. And again there was no slander. I'm leaving the rest of the post alone, because I think if it's going to be answered, todangst should answer it.

You see, but that's the problem. As I have proven for the second or third time now, I never believed that the primary problem with Hitler or Stalin's ideologies was dogmatism. That's why we don't agree on that point.

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deludedgod wrote: And I

deludedgod wrote:

And I would agree that people do not and cannot kill in the name of "lack of faith"; however, we could say that people can and may kill in the name of "destroying faith".

And for another point, simply because one kills in the name of something doesn't make that something automatically wrong. Many people, centuries ago used to kill by the name of the loved ones they were trying to avenge, in the name of "freedom", "liberty", "justice", etc. Certainly no name, concept, or ideology is free from abuse. We could argue, however that certain ideologies taken to their logical conclusions are in fact wrong.

And I would agree that people do not and cannot kill in the name of "lack of faith"; however, we could say that people can and may kill in the name of "destroying faith".

And for another point, simply because one kills in the name of something doesn't make that something automatically wrong. Many people, centuries ago used to kill by the name of the loved ones they were trying to avenge, in the name of "freedom", "liberty", "justice", etc. Certainly no name, concept, or ideology is free from abuse. We could argue, however that certain ideologies taken to their logical conclusions are in fact wrong.

This misses a fundamental point. Of course supposedly atheist regimes like Stalin and mao have murdered people for being religious. Why did they do it? They percieved the religious to be a threat to their power. Religious people have done that too.

but that is a side issue. As dawkins pointed out "we are not in the business of counting heads of inquity". If it comes to the point where we are matching death tolls, you know something is wrong.

Atheists have killed people for land, money, power and resources. Religious people have done that too. Supposedly atheist nations have destroyed religion because it was a threat to their power. This was gravely wrong.

But one thing that the religious have done that atheists have not is kill people out of faith. Let me explain. If an atheist who is also a murderer shoots someone, would we say he is "an evil murderer" or "an evil atheist", probably an evil murderer because this man's atheism is likely not correlated with him pulling the trigger. We know this because it is just as plausable that a Christian/murderer would kill someone, and we would also react by calling this man "an evil murderer" not "an evil christian". This can be applied to despots. Reiterating my previous points, atheists and theists have all killed for the same old reasons: Money, power and land. Nobody would deny that. This brings me to an obvious correlation mistake. Some theists state that atheists should not use things like the Spanish Inquisition and 9/11 in their arguments, because the communists (who they think were atheist) killed many more people. They fail to recognize the obvious correlation. They were tyrants because they were commnist not because they were atheist. I have heard of tyranny due to greed, power, money, land, resources and...faith. But never have I seen a causality between atheism and tyranny. And if there is an example, please point it out to me.

BUT, if a Spanish Inquisitor nails a man to a cross before lowering him into a lard vat, or an overzealous perfecti decides to burn a woman alive for witchcraft, they are acting to "cleanse the souls" of those to whom they are doing these atrocities.

The worst part about 9/11 was that the men who did it were not evil, or insane, or stupi,d or crazy, or depressed, they even thought they were rational. What they were was men of faith. Perfect faith, and that is a terrible thing to be.

So, the salient point is that faith is one of many bad institutions in the world. When Channel 4 aired Dawkins' show The root of all evil? he wanted them to change the name because he recognized that saying something is the root of all evil is a ridiculous assertion. NOBODY here is denying that atheists have done terrible things, just like a theist would not( I hope) deny that many theists have done terrible things. One thing we do have to recognize however, is that removing theism would remove many of these terrible things, because many theists have killed and died for a reason that atheists have not: faith. Therefore, removing theism would remove one of the primary reasons for atrocities in the world and throug history.

 

 

But then I would simply argue that removing faith would not solve anything at all, as you are simply also forgetting several other factors involved.

Faith in and of itself is also not a problem. Power, greed, lust, etc. are also major factors. And as long as these things exists within the human soul and psyche, faith is not one of the worst enemies on this planet.

Even reason can be used for immoral means.

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MrRage wrote: M

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:

MattShizzle wrote:
If you'd like to prove that there isn't a porcelain teapot orbiting the sun go right ahead, but I can promise you won't be able to.

 

Please spare what brain cells I have left after reading your unconstructive reponses. They're comitting suicide just trying to understand why you claim to be rational.

M, leave MattShizzle alone. If his posts are so dangerous to your brain cells, then just don't read them.

His posts only reflect an ignorant prejudice...something the lot of you should be denouncing.

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MrRage wrote: M wrote: If

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
If you understood my point then Tod wouldn't be claiming that I'm blaming "atheism".
Bullshit. I've just reread todangst's posts in this thread, and he made no such claim. Either you do have poor reading comprehension, or you're lying.

Or that I'm correct...

Because he insists that I am blaming Atheism for dogmatism because it is somehow an ideology in the first few replies:

M wrote:

todangst wrote:
Oh stop it. I am not being dogmatic. And the actual point before you is that atheism itself is not a dogma, nor does it insist on dogma.

 

 

I never stated that Atheism was in and of itself a 'dogma'. I merely stated that Atheists are not immune from beliefs (ideologies, etc.):

 

And...

M wrote:
todangst wrote:
Oh would you stop with this nonsense and deal with the actual arguments before you? Again, atheism itself is not an ideology.

 

As I stated before, I never once said that Atheism was an ideology. You even confess that I didn't say this while also confessing the possibility of Atheists having ideologies:

  

MrRage wrote:
One of the most influential Christians in history is anti-semitic, and this is not a bad mark on Christianity? Right.

Not on the belief system, no. That's a guilt by association fallacy. If Hitler said not to kill Jews would you disagree with him simply because of the holocaust? If Luther said that Christianity is the truth, would you disagree with him because he was anti-semitic? 

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
Furthermore, as I noted beforehand, I merely stated that I was "entertaining' the idea of Luther being the only motivation behind Hitler's Jew hatred, which Tod denied as being the only motivator, but irregardless I didn't think it to be a big deal.
Of course it's not the only motivation. You're the only one saying that. todangst said "... you tell me if Luther's hatred didn't play a role in the holocaust ..." (emphasis mine.) You didn't think it to be a big deal. Yeah, you're not dodging anything.

I don't because there were other factors involved as well as the fact that it doesn't hurt Christianity one bit even if it were the case.

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
Then I even went on to say that Tod's argument was about the equivalent of stating that we should ban hammers because someone used a hammer to murder someone.
Yes, you wrote that, but todangst's argument not equivalent. One reason is he wasn't talking about banning anything. Another reason is if a whole group of people started killing people with hammers because of some influential hammer murderer, then people might start trying to persuade those with hammers to get rid of their hammers.

 I already covered this previously. And you have no substantial evidence to prove that the by majority religion (faith) in and of itself has produced more evil than good. You can make the assumption, but I think a little reason would conclude that it is merely an exaggeration.

 

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
Furthermore, while I snapped on Dawkins, all I merely said was that he had an axe to grind, not that he was stupid or anything.
I didn't claim you said he was stupid. You were personally attacking him, but you were not attacking what he says.

The point is that how could I have been 'personally attacking him' if all I said was that he had an axe to grind? The actual personal attack was on the people who followed him, not Dawkins himself, though I would still disagree with him.

MrRage wrote:
 
M wrote:
And it's apparent that he wants to have a 'war' with religon and it's thinkers.
Of course it's apparent. No one is denying this. But this has nothing to do with the validity of Dawkins statements. There's a name for this sort of fallacy, I think you know what it is.

You're assuming more than what is there.

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
My comment about Harris being a hypocrite is justified by the fact that he blames religion for most of the evils of the world, yet downplays the acts of Atheists acting under other ideologies...as though true Atheists don't do such things, but true Theists can only be extremists.
It's about time you responded. I just wish you would have done it in the right thread. Have you read any of Harris' work? If you did read, and comprehend, what Harris is saying, you wouldn't be making these claims. Did you read his article 10 myths—and 10 Truths—About Atheism? There's an answer to you objections in point #2. But just in case you don't want to read, Harris doesn't harp on atheism so much. His book The End of Faith is about faith vs. reason. In the above article, Harris states "There is no society in human history that ever suffered because its people became too reasonable."

And yes, I have read some of Harris work. And his last statement is purely crap because obviously the French suffered under 'too much reason' at one point in their history as well as the fact that Stalin and Hitler under their pro-Darwinian reasoning slaughtered millions of people.

MrRage wrote:
Harris never said that "true Theists can only be extremists." Where are you getting this from?
M wrote:
While he tries to debunk 'myths' of Atheism he has no intention or care to debunk his own cliches about religion.
How do you know his intentions and cares? If he's wrong about something, why don't you set him strait? He claims to value reason, so if you show you're correct using reason then he must accept it. According to his bio, Harris has studied religion for 20 years. I find it hard to believe that his understanding of religion is a cliche.
M wrote:
He simply demonizes one side...just as Dawkins does.
There's a difference between strongly arguing against someone's beliefs, and demonizing them. Would you care to show specifically how Dawkins and Harris are simply demonizing?
M wrote:
Irregardless ,if Theists have demonized Atheists it does not make it justifiable for Atheists to do the same. In this way, it is simply hypocritical.

 Because both Dawkins and Harris believe that even the moderates are to blame for this "faith problem". They leave no room for those that have not commited these atrocities and would never do so. An example of such is Dawkins insistance that religious teachings at an early age are child abuse (while Atheistic ones are not? Please). The simple fact that they want to destroy ALL faith because of it's problems is evidence enough of their irrational position.

 

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The teapot argument is from

The teapot argument is from Lord Bertrand Russel. And blaming for example, Stalins atrocities on atheism is just as absurd as blaming having a mustache (Hitler, Stalin and Saddam Hussein all had mustaches!) In both examples there is no relation.

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deludedgod wrote: But one

deludedgod wrote:

But one thing that the religious have done that atheists have not is kill people out of faith. 

Precisely. Even M is able to grasp that atheism is merely incidental to Stalinism, Mao-ism, etc..... so it's entirely moot.

 

 

"Hitler burned people like Anne Frank, for that we call him evil.
"God" burns Anne Frank eternally. For that, theists call him 'good.'


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M, I misquoted you about

M, I misquoted you about agreeing that dogmatism was communism's and fascism's problem. My mistake. That's what I get for writing late at night.

I don't want to continue the current semantic quibbling, as it would be a waste of time. I wouldn't go as far as todangst in claiming you have a comprehension problem, but there's a lot of misunderstanding going on. I think all the quotes flying around don't help out either.

Here are two statements. I'd like to know if you would agree with them.

1. What was wrong with communism/fascism is they had incorrect beliefs, e.g. Lysenkoism, the Master Race, etc.

2. They held to these beliefs dogmatically. That is they held these beliefs with a closed mind. e.g. Lysenkoism was still held to besides the fact that it didn't work and caused mass starvation.


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M wrote: Because he insists

M wrote:
Because he insists that I am blaming Atheism for dogmatism because it is somehow an ideology...

OK. I read your post as "Tod wouldn't be claiming that I'm blaming "atheism" [for communism and fascism]." My mistake.


MrRage wrote:
One of the most influential Christians in history is anti-semitic, and this is not a bad mark on Christianity? Right.

M wrote:
Not on the belief system, no. That's a guilt by association fallacy.

I don't think it's a guilt by association fallacy. The key is that Luther was influential. He wasn't some random Christian, he helped shape Christian thought.

M wrote:
If Hitler said not to kill Jews would you disagree with him simply because of the holocaust?

I'm not following your question.

M wrote:
If Luther said that Christianity is the truth, would you disagree with him because he was anti-semitic?

Not necessarily, because antisemitism isn't a doctrine of Christianity. There might be a case for hypocrisy though.


M wrote:
The point is that how could I have been 'personally attacking him' if all I said was that he had an axe to grind? The actual personal attack was on the people who followed him, not Dawkins himself, though I would still disagree with him.

You called him an old biologist with an ax to grind. Anyway, if your not going to actually put forth some rebuttals of Dawkins, then I'm going to drop this.


M wrote:
And yes, I have read some of Harris work. And his last statement is purely crap because obviously the French suffered under 'too much reason' at one point in their history as well as the fact that Stalin and Hitler under their pro-Darwinian reasoning slaughtered millions of people.

There's a difference between being reasonable and a reasoning process. I'm not too knowledgeable about the Reign of Terror, but I hadn't heard it was because of any ideals of the enlightenment. I'm going to have to research that.

The kind of reason Harris talks about goes a long with being open minded and only holding beliefs when there's evidence for them. This sort of mindset doesn't lend itself too well to bloodshed.

M wrote:
Because both Dawkins and Harris believe that even the moderates are to blame for this "faith problem". They leave no room for those that have not commited these atrocities and would never do so. An example of such is Dawkins insistance that religious teachings at an early age are child abuse (while Atheistic ones are not? Please). The simple fact that they want to destroy ALL faith because of it's problems is evidence enough of their irrational position.

I think you're putting Harris' statements in a really negative light. Moderates are blamed for making discussion about faith a taboo. And we need to have a discussion about faith. We need the moderates, especially in the Muslim world, to help deal with the radical fundamentalist. But they don't.

Atheists need to be careful when bringing out the child abuse thing. But there are forms of indoctrination, e.g. what was going on in the movie Jesus Camp, that do emotionally traumatize children. I don't think all religious teaching of children is abuse, and this is how I was taking Dawkins position.

Harris does want to end faith. I don't see why believing in something without, or even despite, the evidence is in any way a good thing. But Harris does put forth an idea of a human spirituality (for the lack of a better word) based on reason and evidence. This would still give humans the sense of meaning that religions give, without all the fluff of ridiculous beliefs and outdated ethics.


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MrRage wrote: M, I

MrRage wrote:
M, I misquoted you about agreeing that dogmatism was communism's and fascism's problem. My mistake. That's what I get for writing late at night. I don't want to continue the current semantic quibbling, as it would be a waste of time. I wouldn't go as far as todangst in claiming you have a comprehension problem, but there's a lot of misunderstanding going on. I think all the quotes flying around don't help out either. Here are two statements. I'd like to know if you would agree with them. 1. What was wrong with communism/fascism is they had incorrect beliefs, e.g. Lysenkoism, the Master Race, etc. 2. They held to these beliefs dogmatically. That is they held these beliefs with a closed mind. e.g. Lysenkoism was still held to besides the fact that it didn't work and caused mass starvation.
Thank you very much. I was more worried about losing a possible friendship than my own credibility.And I will agree on both your points.

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MrRage wrote: M

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
Because he insists that I am blaming Atheism for dogmatism because it is somehow an ideology...
OK. I read your post as "Tod wouldn't be claiming that I'm blaming "atheism" [for communism and fascism]." My mistake.
MrRage wrote:
One of the most influential Christians in history is anti-semitic, and this is not a bad mark on Christianity? Right.
M wrote:
Not on the belief system, no. That's a guilt by association fallacy.
I don't think it's a guilt by association fallacy. The key is that Luther was influential. He wasn't some random Christian, he helped shape Christian thought.
M wrote:
If Hitler said not to kill Jews would you disagree with him simply because of the holocaust?
I'm not following your question.
M wrote:
If Luther said that Christianity is the truth, would you disagree with him because he was anti-semitic?
Not necessarily, because antisemitism isn't a doctrine of Christianity. There might be a case for hypocrisy though.
M wrote:
The point is that how could I have been 'personally attacking him' if all I said was that he had an axe to grind? The actual personal attack was on the people who followed him, not Dawkins himself, though I would still disagree with him.
You called him an old biologist with an ax to grind. Anyway, if your not going to actually put forth some rebuttals of Dawkins, then I'm going to drop this.
M wrote:
And yes, I have read some of Harris work. And his last statement is purely crap because obviously the French suffered under 'too much reason' at one point in their history as well as the fact that Stalin and Hitler under their pro-Darwinian reasoning slaughtered millions of people.
There's a difference between being reasonable and a reasoning process. I'm not too knowledgeable about the Reign of Terror, but I hadn't heard it was because of any ideals of the enlightenment. I'm going to have to research that. The kind of reason Harris talks about goes a long with being open minded and only holding beliefs when there's evidence for them. This sort of mindset doesn't lend itself too well to bloodshed.
M wrote:
Because both Dawkins and Harris believe that even the moderates are to blame for this "faith problem". They leave no room for those that have not commited these atrocities and would never do so. An example of such is Dawkins insistance that religious teachings at an early age are child abuse (while Atheistic ones are not? Please). The simple fact that they want to destroy ALL faith because of it's problems is evidence enough of their irrational position.
I think you're putting Harris' statements in a really negative light. Moderates are blamed for making discussion about faith a taboo. And we need to have a discussion about faith. We need the moderates, especially in the Muslim world, to help deal with the radical fundamentalist. But they don't. Atheists need to be careful when bringing out the child abuse thing. But there are forms of indoctrination, e.g. what was going on in the movie Jesus Camp, that do emotionally traumatize children. I don't think all religious teaching of children is abuse, and this is how I was taking Dawkins position. Harris does want to end faith. I don't see why believing in something without, or even despite, the evidence is in any way a good thing. But Harris does put forth an idea of a human spirituality (for the lack of a better word) based on reason and evidence. This would still give humans the sense of meaning that religions give, without all the fluff of ridiculous beliefs and outdated ethics.
Fair enough, I will re-examine their positions in light of your testimony.

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M since I cant make my 

M since I cant make my point any clearer in words, I have drawn a simple venn diagram...which I will put in as soon as i figure out how to upload images which are not on the internet.

 

  

"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.

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deludedgod wrote: M since

deludedgod wrote:

M since I cant make my point any clearer in words, I have drawn a simple venn diagram...which I will put in as soon as i figure out how to upload images which are not on the internet.

*Nudge* 

Photobucket 

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M wrote: Thank you very

M wrote:
Thank you very much. I was more worried about losing a possible friendship than my own credibility.

I'm embarrassed that I misquoted you. I hope you believe me that the misquoting wasn't done maliciously.

M wrote:
And I will agree on both your points.

Since you will agree to them, then maybe we can salvage this thread a bit. Strictly from 1. and 2. above, it follows that dogma isn't necessarily a bad thing. That is, one could hold correct beliefs dogmatically. I'm trying to understand your line of thinking. Am I close?

For me this raises the question, "How does one arrive at correct beliefs?"

I value being open minded above holding correct beliefs. (Open minded meaning always being able to admit that you could be wrong, and the willingness to reconsider your beliefs.) Holding the correct beliefs is important, but I think being open minded is the best way to arrive at correct beliefs.

Here's the point I'm trying to get across. todangst and I are making a judgement about what the common "problem" is with religion, fascism, communism. We say the problem is dogmatic, closed minded thinking. We make this judgment because we put a premium on open minded, non-dogmatic thinking.

I don't think anyone is right or wrong here. Maybe you don't put the same value on open minded, critical think that we do. I'm not saying you're close minded. Your willingness to reconsider Harris' positions shows otherwise. But maybe you value it less (read: you value faith more), so you come up with different explanations for communism's "problem".

Is this making sense? I'd appreciate your input.

In conclusion, I, personally, am not interested in wiping out religion. I am interested in wiping out dogmatic closed minded thinking. I think in the end, whether atheism or theism wins out, open minded thinking will lead to beliefs, at least on the essential matters, that we all can live with.


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Sorry for taking so long to

Sorry for taking so long to respond, MrRage. I have been busy the past few days. I still am busy, but I have some time to give you a response. 

MrRage wrote:
I'm embarrassed that I misquoted you. I hope you believe me that the misquoting wasn't done maliciously.

 Don't be. I never thought you were doing so maliciously. I just thought I was crazy or something, because I had read and re-read TodAngsts and my own responses like ten times in a row and I couldn't understand why everyone wasn't catching on to what I was saying :/

 

MrRage wrote:
Since you will agree to them, then maybe we can salvage this thread a bit. Strictly from 1. and 2. above, it follows that dogma isn't necessarily a bad thing. That is, one could hold correct beliefs dogmatically. I'm trying to understand your line of thinking. Am I close?

Yes. 

MrRage wrote:
For me this raises the question, "How does one arrive at correct beliefs?" I value being open minded above holding correct beliefs. (Open minded meaning always being able to admit that you could be wrong, and the willingness to reconsider your beliefs.)

Certainly. I believe that being open minded is essential, but it is not exclusive from dogma. One can still hold a position and treat it like dogma, but still be open minded in other areas. Being purely dogmatic or purely open minded are dangerous state of beings. They are both extremes that should not be adopted.  

MrRage wrote:
Holding the correct beliefs is important, but I think being open minded is the best way to arrive at correct beliefs.

Certainly, but once one believes they have found the truth they will in fact resort to making it into their own personal dogma. And we cannot automatically assume that dogmatism makes people impossible to presuade; it merely makes it more difficult. 

You see, my view of dogma is that it can possibly go either way: negative or positive. For instance, I would not judge all of Catholic dogma as negative or a form of 'close mindedness'. 

MrRage wrote:
Here's the point I'm trying to get across. todangst and I are making a judgement about what the common "problem" is with religion, fascism, communism. We say the problem is dogmatic, closed minded thinking. We make this judgment because we put a premium on open minded, non-dogmatic thinking. I don't think anyone is right or wrong here. Maybe you don't put the same value on open minded, critical think that we do. I'm not saying you're close minded. Your willingness to reconsider Harris' positions shows otherwise. But maybe you value it less (read: you value faith more), so you come up with different explanations for communism's "problem". Is this making sense? I'd appreciate your input. In conclusion, I, personally, am not interested in wiping out religion. I am interested in wiping out dogmatic closed minded thinking. I think in the end, whether atheism or theism wins out, open minded thinking will lead to beliefs, at least on the essential matters, that we all can live with.

 I appreciate the honesty in that response (not saying you were ever dishonest before; please do not misunderstand). 

But I think that dogmatic thinking in the sense of being purely close minded is in no way the only problem. I think when we think of people like Stalin and Hitler we cannot simply consider that the only factor to them that was the problem. I think other things, like morality, need to be discussed. I think in fact, that morality is the primary thing that needs to be discussed. 

Remember, there are good dogmatic people in this world as there are equally bad ones. We cannot fault all dogmatism unless we really can conclusively say that it is all wrong. I think the only reason that Stalin and Hitler's dogmatism are being targeted here is not because they were dogmatic, but because they were immoral. 

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


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M wrote: Sorry for taking

M wrote:
Sorry for taking so long to respond, MrRage. I have been busy the past few days. I still am busy, but I have some time to give you a response.

No worries.

M wrote:
I never thought you were doing so maliciously.

Cool. Smiling

M wrote:
I believe that being open minded is essential, but it is not exclusive from dogma. One can still hold a position and treat it like dogma, but still be open minded in other areas. Being purely dogmatic or purely open minded are dangerous state of beings. They are both extremes that should not be adopted.

I agree. I'm dogmatic in believing the earth is a sphere, but then there's overwhelming evidence for it. What I'm against is being dogmatic about things that could possible never be verified, or have even been falsified.

M wrote:
But I think that dogmatic thinking in the sense of being purely close minded is in no way the only problem. I think when we think of people like Stalin and Hitler we cannot simply consider that the only factor to them that was the problem. I think other things, like morality, need to be discussed. I think in fact, that morality is the primary thing that needs to be discussed.

Remember, there are good dogmatic people in this world as there are equally bad ones. We cannot fault all dogmatism unless we really can conclusively say that it is all wrong. I think the only reason that Stalin and Hitler's dogmatism are being targeted here is not because they were dogmatic, but because they were immoral.

Certainly, dogmatism wasn't the only problem. I'm sure even experts in this area have differing viewpoints. Yes, morality comes into play. Hitler and Stalin were monsters. Dogmatism, and to a greater extent, suppressing dissent seals the deal. No one within their societies could challenge the immorality.


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But then I would simply

But then I would simply argue that removing faith would not solve anything at all, as you are simply also forgetting several other factors involved.

Like What?

Faith in and of itself is also not a problem. Power, greed, lust, etc. are also major factors. And as long as these things exists within the human soul and psyche, faith is not one of the worst enemies on this planet.

Evidently I did not make it clear enough. A person will not fly a plane into a building or celebrate the violent death of their child because of "power" "greed" "Lust" etc.

 Even reason can be used for immoral means.

 Has an atrocity ever been commited out of reason?

"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.

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MrRage wrote: M

MrRage wrote:
M wrote:
Sorry for taking so long to respond, MrRage. I have been busy the past few days. I still am busy, but I have some time to give you a response.
No worries.
M wrote:
I never thought you were doing so maliciously.
Cool. Smiling
M wrote:
I believe that being open minded is essential, but it is not exclusive from dogma. One can still hold a position and treat it like dogma, but still be open minded in other areas. Being purely dogmatic or purely open minded are dangerous state of beings. They are both extremes that should not be adopted.
I agree. I'm dogmatic in believing the earth is a sphere, but then there's overwhelming evidence for it. What I'm against is being dogmatic about things that could possible never be verified, or have even been falsified.
M wrote:
But I think that dogmatic thinking in the sense of being purely close minded is in no way the only problem. I think when we think of people like Stalin and Hitler we cannot simply consider that the only factor to them that was the problem. I think other things, like morality, need to be discussed. I think in fact, that morality is the primary thing that needs to be discussed. Remember, there are good dogmatic people in this world as there are equally bad ones. We cannot fault all dogmatism unless we really can conclusively say that it is all wrong. I think the only reason that Stalin and Hitler's dogmatism are being targeted here is not because they were dogmatic, but because they were immoral.
Certainly, dogmatism wasn't the only problem. I'm sure even experts in this area have differing viewpoints. Yes, morality comes into play. Hitler and Stalin were monsters. Dogmatism, and to a greater extent, suppressing dissent seals the deal. No one within their societies could challenge the immorality.

 Oh, but people within that society did in fact challenge the immorality...the Catholic Church Smiling

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deludedgod wrote:

Evidently I did not make it clear enough. A person will not fly a plane into a building or celebrate the violent death of their child because of "power" "greed" "Lust" etc.

Sure they can. People may fly planes into buildings because they are suicidal or have an inferiority complex. Racists tend to be marked as having these sort of complexes. The appeal to an afterlife was merely icing on the cake for these people, but it wasn't the prime motivator. To argue this we would have to include all people of faith as flying planes into buildings. Obviously they don't so faith cannot in and of itself cause these atrocities.

deludedgod wrote:
Has an atrocity ever been commited out of reason?

Hitler and Stalin used their socialisitc and neo-darwinian reason to opress and kill millions. They were merely being logically consistent with their beliefs. 

"Unwanteds" would hinder society in consuming resources needed for those that were healthier, stronger, and better humans overall. Therefore it was better to just kill them off. 

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.


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Sure they can. People may

Sure they can. People may fly planes into buildings because they are suicidal or have an inferiority complex. Racists tend to be marked as having these sort of complexes. The appeal to an afterlife was merely icing on the cake for these people, but it wasn't the prime motivator. To argue this we would have to include all people of faith as flying planes into buildings. Obviously they don't so faith cannot in and of itself cause these atrocities.

This response makes me want to bang my head against the wall. Of course it is not faith per se that makes a person do these things, but faith is a necessary factor in the equation.  

 
Hitler and Stalin used their socialisitc and neo-darwinian reason to opress and kill millions. They were merely being logically consistent with their beliefs. 

"Unwanteds" would hinder society in consuming resources needed for those that were healthier, stronger, and better humans overall. Therefore it was better to just kill them off.

Once again, I simply point out that these societies were dogmatic and cult-like that used demigod-style brainwashing campaigns.

And again, I simply point out that such atrocities are the result of the non-faith based reasons for atrocity like power, greed etc. Both theists and atheists have commited these. But faith is a cause of atrocities that would not happen if there was no faith. 

"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

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deludedgod wrote: This



deludedgod wrote:
This response makes me want to bang my head against the wall. Of course it is not faith per se that makes a person do these things, but faith is a necessary factor in the equation.

Well...don't hurt yourself. We wouldn't want that. You didn't make it appear in your responses that faith was a "factor" in committing atrocities...and even if you did I would object as faith is in no way a motivator. Faith is a state of thought. What you have your faith in may be the motivator, but in no way is faith in and of itself a problem. I answered you according to how I felt you responded to me. I stated rather clearly that faith, in and of itself was not the problem and you didn't seem to have a problem with that in your last reply:

deludedgod wrote:
M wrote:

Faith in and of itself is also not a problem. Power, greed, lust, etc. are also major factors. And as long as these things exists within the human soul and psyche, faith is not one of the worst enemies on this planet.

Evidently I did not make it clear enough. A person will not fly a plane into a building or celebrate the violent death of their child because of "power" "greed" "Lust" etc.

 



deludedgod wrote:
Once again, I simply point out that these societies were dogmatic and cult-like that used demigod-style brainwashing campaigns.

But then I could just say "ad hoc", because you have no evidence for Hitler and Stalin not being reasonable. They clearly were reasonable in their beliefs. Their logic and reason was not flawed in what they regarded as truth. If the world is about survival and who is the strongest (as perpetuated by Neo-Darwinism), then certainly they did what was right.

Your objection to them is purely moral, but it doesn't make them "dogmatic and cult-like that used demigod-style brainwashing campaigns". Perhaps they were, but this doesn't mean that they were unreasonable or that they didn't base their beliefs on reason alone. 

deludedgod wrote:
And again, I simply point out that such atrocities are the result of the non-faith based reasons for atrocity like power, greed etc. Both theists and atheists have commited these. But faith is a cause of atrocities that would not happen if there was no faith.

That's if you can prove that faith alone is the cause of atrocities. I would even question if 'faith alone' is a factor in atrocities as this doesn't really say anything.

 And even if that were the case I would just say that "reason is the cause of atrocities that would not happen if there was no reason".

I believe it is equally as atrocious to rid the world of something just because people like to corrupt it for their own immoral means. It's almost like using the reasoning of racists in regards to blacks, spanish, etc. etc. 

I obtained my Black Belt in History. Don't mess with this Master Historian.