Spoiler:- My latest challenge:
Alrighty, if I may ask you guys, what are your opinions on the idea of memetic evolution? Richard Dawkins initiated the theory that memes (ideas) serve as a sort of immaterial analogue to genes, and like genes, undergo replication, alteration and nonrandom selection, thereby competing for survival in the environment of human minds. For example, Dawkins suggests religious faith is a particularly competent and virulent meme, which once having gotten a grip on a human mind resists its demise by undermining the effective use of reason and evidence to shape and/or correct the collection of beliefs and ideas in that human mind.
I'm not sure I endorse the theory. It does seem to accurately describe at least some qualities of thoughts and memes (in the traditional sense), but after reading some other authors on the subject there is a convincing case that memes don't really analogize to genes well, nor cultural/memetic evolution to the process of biological natural selection.
If that's a bit too obscure (it sure took me a while thinking about it @_@), then may I ask what kinds of science, politics, or philosophy books/articles/blogs you folks have read recently? =)
Hello, everyone. I would like to join this club. I am an atheist, I suppose, though I haven't always been. I was raised to be a Christian, though we didn't really go to church or anything. I only did a few times with my dad, then I went to a Sunday school type thing for a while, not because my parents made me (they didn't) but because I wanted to. After a while that church said something I was uncomfortable with and I left. My parents were understanding about it and agreed with me. Basically the church tried to force me to get saved and had me fill out a card or something and that bothered me.
I stayed a Christian for years after, but when I was 12-13 I started questioning it. This scared me because I did not want to go to Hell. What's more was that I started feeling like I might be bisexual. When I found out The Bible was against homosexuality I freaked out and worried a lot about Hell. I finally was able to let go of that and it felt like a huge weight was lifted.
After that I kind of went back and forth between atheism and other beliefs. Some of those beliefs were just regular religions like Christianity and Paganism, but others were just plain idiotic. To give you a hint of just how idiotic, there's a four year old thread on these very forums that I posted in called "Pokémon Are Real!". *Headdesk*
I've had some very bad experiences with beliefs, especially Christianity. My most recent trial of that particular religion was an absolute nightmare. I'm so glad I'm free from it now.
That said, I do find religion interesting and like some Christian and New Age Music. I recognize that it can be good for some people, just not everyone. I just don't like it when people force their beliefs on others and make me feel like I'm "wrong" for not believing. Ceremonies that involve religion can feel rather awkward for me. Like at my step-grandmother's funeral, when the pastor started going on about how there are probably people in the room who don't believe and that it's bad and blah blah blah. I found it disrespectful and unnecessary for the funeral service.
Glad to have you!
Spoiler:- My latest challenge:
Well shit has hit the fan with Chick-Fil-A
I find overly religious ceremonies awkward too. Both my grandparent's funerals were heavily religious and they pretty much went on about how god loves everyone and that non-believers will one day see the light etc etc. But like you, there are some religious aspects I like (especially the music side); I just don't choose to believe or follow any of it. If I ever get married (if ever), there prolly won't be any references to god :P
This whole Chick-a-fil thing (whatever it's called, we don't ahve them over here) is dissappointing. I couldn't care less what the manager's views on gay marriage were but the whole motivation behind the "appreciation" day (at least, people who were supporting C-A-F for it's stance on gay rights) is sickening. It's like some people were taking pride in being homophobic. That's my perspective anyway
Last edited by FlyShyGuy; 3rd August 2012 at 8:17 PM.
Q: What's a Metapod's favourite ice-cream??
....yeah I suck at jokes:/
Current Poke-activity : Pokemon White 2 Walkthrough - Set Mode, No Healing Items
Current Progress: 4th Gym Leader
Since I'm doubtful there's a useful point mid-discussion to post this in the Debate forum, I'll instead bring you guys a link to a very appreciable article concerning the relationship between Christian ideology and conservative politics in the US. It's a safe bet that most of the American (and probably some non-American) atheists here are also interested in politics as part of their worldviews.
Imo it's always pleasant to be reminded of the better characteristics of the person of Jesus.
It is a Dutch book So I could tell you it's name but I doubt you would understand it!
Spoiler:- My latest challenge:
Also new topic
How would you feel if your child came out to you about believing in a God
I'd really just be happy that they were happy, as long as they didn't force it.
In other news: Shameless opportunism or light-hearted satire? You decide!
I'll be honest. I do not find the above particularly entertaining. =x
3DS Code: 2723 9573 9029
How would you feel if your child came out to you about believing in a God
Prevention is the best solution: don't have kids!
Welcome all new family members, let me know if I missed anyone on the list.
Sorry I really haven't been posting in here much my loved ones. My pills really messed me up for a while, I was having hot flashes and everything.
So here's a fun little thing to discuss, not really going to be a topic, but more of an open convo.
Since religious stuff in schools goes by state to state and country to country. We're all around the same age Apart form Profesco who is like older than Jesus.
What was it like with your school. With me, we had some small Mormon stuff going on there, and students in JR. High, and High School could chose to take a class located off campus that was an LDS class, I did take this the first part of 10th grade because i got put in it, but it was just for a few weeks, then the rest of the time was me another student and her friend ditching and having sexy time fun in the bathroom.
We have classes of Religion and ethics in our school.
It gets funnier when you replace the word "state" with "Satan"
Bugs ain't afraid of the Dark
Hey, I'd like to join if that's alright? :3 I'm an agnostic atheist, although I make an effort to remain tolerant. x3 No stories from me - raised in an openminded household, went through the british schooling system where morning hymn practise was just the way it was (at my school at least) until secondary school and then a few years of 'religious education' classes (about a variety of religions, although christian focussed), but it was never really forced down your throat. A teacher that happened to be a reverend did end up doing my sex ed class, which was hilarious, but it was still the standard 'here's how you put a rubber on a banana' thing. xD
I believe I've read the article you linked before, Profesco, or at least something on the same subject matter - and as a british-raised american, I've certainly found the response of the state's to the idea of a way of ensuring health care for the poor, and indeed the tight ties between religion and politics, bewildering. The wedding of Conservatism with, at times, extremist christianity particularly. I shouldn't be surprised that cold war tensions are still prevalent in US politics, I know, but to hear open smear campaigns about obamacare being a battle for socialism vs capitalism is surprising. I'm not used to the overtly sensationalist nature of a lot of American news, as well - but that's a different kettle of fish. xD That said, we are certainly not 'saints' here - we have our newspaper conglomerates and tabloids, class divisions still run rife, as does homophobia and racial tensions, albeit occasionally more subtly then in American politics. All too easy to become disillusioned, haha.
Wait, why didn't I join this version of the club? O.o
Anyways, I've pretty much always been an atheist, sometimes an anti theist. I always try to respect others but if they come up with extreme ideas or push it too far I explode. To me religion is something from old times used to explain things that people didn't understand back then. Also something to turn to during bad times or by others (mainly extremists) a medium to spread fear and terror. The last reason is why I see it as humanity's biggest curse.
So yeah, I went to a christian school because my mom's aunt is a nun, but most of my other family members are either atheists or agnostic so at least I have no problems with that. I also liked to discuss with my religion teachers, but respected their opinions. It was just fun to do.
I'm also obsessed by the prehistory since I was a little kid. It started with dinosaurs, then everything else during that age and then everything before and after then. Some years after that I also became really interested in space and how everything in nature works (ranging from evolution to spacetime and nuclear fusion)
So yeah, this was my short intro, you can count me in Darato ^^;
I am indeed the one with the power of a god.
The divine flames that I've absorbed
will burn you to a crisp with nuclear energy and leave nothing behind!
Well, we had some religion classes in high school and below, but it was never about 1 single religion. We learned about all of them , their similarities, diffrence, what they belive in etc. Not because we are to become religious, but for us to be able to understand how religion works and how it affect society. Was pretty okay classes to take although the amount of bull**** i found in each religion was quite frustrating.
Last edited by Pokemon Geek; 24th August 2012 at 5:08 PM.
Dorato: I've been following the case... :/
My 12 year old cousin just told me that men rule, women obey.
It's an interesting situation. He comes from a very orthodox jewish family - one that doesn't believe in evolution, limits what the children are exposed to, including the internet (we're not allowed to mention how easy information is to access through it, for example), television, which books they read, all that jazz. He's a smart kid for his age - he can hold his own in a conversation amongst adults, he reads a lot, he's just utterly taken in with what he's been taught. And it's interesting to hear a statement like that coming out of a child's mouth (accompanied with declarations that Carbon Dating is just His way of testing us). My sister, a biology student in University, managed to get away with one family dinner discussing evolution and the like with him, gently challenging some of his presuppositions, but for the most part he remains within a close nit community, attending a similarly orthodox school. And we, in turn, follow his mother's guidelines on what to wear, what not to do, what not to leave around (there was originally guidelines on what topics to avoid, but my sister kind of stormed through it with her glass of wine fuelled discussion of survival of the fittest and carbon dating xD I don't believe his parents realised, though). We acknowledge their beliefs as different, don't necessarily agree with them, but in the end it's their beliefs, their choices, and we love them in any case.
The restrictions placed on what the children can access to, however, does bother me. Fair enough it's difficult having a relative, particularly your own child, who doesn't share your beliefs, particularly if your belief dictates that nonbelievers are doomed to eternal damnation - nevertheless cutting off your child's access to contrary beliefs and opinions is not only a doomed endeavour, a short term success, but one that breeds ignorance. Only having access to one side of the story robs the child of the ability to make his own decisions. But when it comes to the difficulty of this communal isolation being part of the belief (which I assume is at the heart of my aunts decisions, but I unfortunately don't know enough to be sure, so feel free to contradict me here - but certainly some strands of the anabaptists retreat from the 'taint' of the modern world as part of their belief systems), it falls into murkier waters - particularly in regards to the rights of the parents and the children themselves. How far does tolerance go? I don't believe anyone's beliefs should be forced upon others, and strongly support the secularisation of the state alongside the toleration and acceptance of a variety of different beliefs within a country - people should be able to live their lives as they wish without impinging upon the rights of others to do the same. In my cousin's case, I don't like how his parents have decided to lock-down on what he's exposed to, but as parents, they are within their rights (they're not harming him, and it's a doomed endeavour) to raise their children how they see fit - and the fact that my cousin /is/ smart, and that his older brother, despite growing up in the same environment, has been breaking from his parents hold a little to find things out for himself, offers hope for at least him having a more informed belief in the future. My sister and I will probably still try and engage him in the occasional conversation when we see him, because in the end it can't hurt for him to hear from a different point of view and we rarely see him as it is (we've met only three times during his life- and one of those times he was just 3 years old), but the experience has just given me something to think about.
My sweet sweet grandmother is also a devout nondenominational christian who also believes I'm going to go to hell if I don't believe. We haven't told her that my sister and I are atheists, because it would literally break her heart.
Wow, that was ramble-y, despite how long it took me to write - fail! Self-debating ftw.
My favorite way to die is the way where I stop existing because it's the only reason I'd want to die.