Monday

Gnostic / agnostic Atheist Nonsense


This cute little incorrect meme absolutely destroys the meaning of gnostic and agnostic as used by everyone else in the universe except atheists. This is what happens when you try to appropriate Greek terms that you think are neat, while paying no respect to their historical meaning.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
FROM https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/gnostic

ADJECTIVE

1 Relating to knowledge, especially esoteric mystical knowledge.

1.1 Relating to Gnosticism.

NOUN

An adherent of Gnosticism.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
FROM https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/gnosticism

Gnosticism
NOUN

[mass noun] A prominent heretical movement of the 2nd-century Christian Church, partly of pre-Christian origin. Gnostic doctrine taught that the world was created and ruled by a lesser divinity, the demiurge, and that Christ was an emissary of the remote supreme divine being, esoteric knowledge (gnosis) of whom enabled the redemption of the human spirit.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

FROM https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/agnostic

NOUN

A person who believes that nothing is known or can be known of the existence or nature of God.

ADJECTIVE

1 Relating to agnostics or agnosticism.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thursday

George Hrab gets skepticism wrong


How many different ways can one get a simple philosophical concept wrong? George Hrab ( from the Geologic Podcast) shows us while speaking outside his area of expertise which is music. He has a Bachelor of Music from Moravian College (1993). He has no qualification in philosophy which is the topic of this TED talk found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orSjZaeyISI

Where George Hrab is wrong and at what stage in the lecture:

1. 0.13 "Skepticism. Why? Why not?"
He is only speaking of scientific skepticism which as small part of philosophical skepticism. I quote from https://www.britannica.com/topic/skepticism

"Skepticism ... in Western philosophy, the attitude of doubting knowledge claims set forth in various areas. Skeptics have challenged the adequacy or reliability of these claims by asking what principles they are based upon or what they actually establish. They have questioned whether some such claims really are, as alleged, indubitable or necessarily true, and they have challenged the purported rational grounds of accepted assumptions."

2. 3.47 "[Skepticism is] Evidence based thinking."

I quote from http://www.philosophybasics.com/branch_skepticism.html

"Skepticism ... is the philosophical position that one should refrain from making truth claims, and avoid the postulation of final truths. "

3. 6:05 "I have no faith in anything. I have trust."
I quote from
https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/faith

"faith

NOUN

1 Complete trust or confidence in someone or something."

4. 6:29 "Skepticism is not a belief system ... it is a tool." 
I quote from http://www.philosophybasics.com/branch_skepticism.html
"Skepticism ... is [a] philosophical position" hence a belief system.

From https://proofwiki.org/wiki/Definition:Philosophical_Position

"A philosophical position is, broadly speaking, a belief that a particular statement is either true or false."

5. 8:37 "Modern skepticism looks like this chart - a co-mingling of science education and consumer protection. ... Right in the middle is skepticism."

I again quote from http://www.philosophybasics.com/branch_skepticism.html

"Skepticism ... is the philosophical position that one should refrain from making truth claims, and avoid the postulation of final truths. "


At 22:04 he states: "Learn which resources to trust." I totally agree! Don't trust this TED talk as a reliable resource on philosophical skepticism. It fails the CRAP test.

I quote from hhttps://libraries.mercer.edu/research-tools-help/citation-tools-help/images/PrintableCRAPtest.pdf

"Evaluating Research Sources
Currency ...
Reliability/Relevance ...
Authority
- Who authored this information? ...
- Are their credentials provided?
- What is their reputation or expertise? *[Hint: A degree in music, and doing lots of podcasts, does not make you an expert in philosophy.] ...
Purpose/Point-of-View"

I do agree with him on another point (23:50). Treat this TED talk as an April Fool's joke. Check before you forward this post (21:48). Get an education in philosophical skepticism in the Links below. Scientific skepticism is only a very small part of philosophical skepticism.

CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE INEQUALITY VS MARRIAGE EQUALITY - AUSTRALIA

There are many homophobic Christians in Australia. The Galaxy poll suggests 47% of Christians are homophobic. (53% support marriage equality.) Why should this 47% of 64% of the population (the percentage of Christians in Australia according to the last census) force its minority view on the majority of Australian society? A mere 6,700,000 homophobes forcing their minority view on 17,700,000 other people. (Figures rounded). How can such an imposition be morally (not theologically) justified?

The term "marriage equality" means that this is a debate about the human right of equality under the law. I am speaking specifically about marriage equality as opposed to marriage inequality.

What is the moral good in inequality? (Homophobia promotes inequality.)

Associated with those questions is: What is the harm in equality?

If all anyone has to answer these questions is subjective interpretation of fallible bible verses then it isn't much of a sound valid argument. It is only relevant to Christians who believe subjective interpretation of fallible bible verses.

They embody the exact opposite of the command to "love your neighbour as yourself" as they treat the neighbour differently than one treats oneself. They embody the exact opposite of the fruit of the Spirit:"love ... forbearance, kindness, goodness .. "

All Christian notions of God and "biblical ethics" ( and thus marriage inequality itself) rely on "subjective interpretations of fallible bible verses". Breaking that phrase down:

- "subjective interpretations" All Christian concepts have their roots in bible verses as understood by fallible humans. None of it is totally objective. This means that there are often multiple interpretations of the same bible verse.

- "fallible bible verses". The bible was written by humans and has all the flaws of human writing. Though some parts are history much of it is not history. The bible has not been proven to be inerrant. If every word is "God's Word" then why has God placed so many errors withing the text and words within the Hebrew and Greek that have lost their original meaning? If the bible is "God's Word' and totally reliable then which is the one and only true ending to Mark's gospel as there are several endings written by different people at different stages in time? The bible also contains pseudo-graphs which, in modern parlance, we would call "forgery".

If one takes love as a good as the premise then it has ramifications within Christian dogma and theology where love is central. It also has huge ramifications for Christian marriage inequality.

Christians have a long history of opposing the granting of rights to groups. There is a distinct pattern.

Racism (including slavery): In the past Christian groups argued that people of colour were inferior using bible verses and "the curse of Ham". Slave advocates quoted the fact that the bible condones slavery in both the New and Old Testament. They denied equal rights to people of colour.

Sexism: In the past Christian groups argued that women were to be under the "covering" of a male and quoted bible verses to deny women the same rights as men. For example, opposing women as clergy.

Exactly the same is now happening as Christians argue for marriage inequality that denies equal rights to the LGBTI community.

The premises upon which Christian marriage inequality is built upon have largely invalid arguments such as the following fallacies:
- the appeal to history
- special pleading
- the texas sharp shooter
- genetic
- slippery slope
- appeal to fear
- composition / division
- appeal to emotion
(Not an exhaustive list.)

I haven't seen a single argument for Christian marriage inequality that has not used at least one of the fallacies above.

Tuesday

WHEN DID YOU CHOOSE?

When did you choose to be heterosexual and engage in the heterosexual lifestyle?

Thursday

CJ WERLEMAN - "THE NEW ATHEIST THREAT"



FROM CJ Werleman "The New Atheist Threat (The Dangerous Rise Of Secular Extremists)" (Dangerous Little Books: 2015) Chapter 3 - The Echoe Chamber p 36 ff

Generally speaking, New Atheists attend the same events; listen to the same podcasts and speakers; read the same books and blogs; download the same YouTube videos; and follow the same public personalities (atheists) on social media. All of which makes for a high-pitched echo chamber; thus providing those within its orbital spin a perpetual positive feedback loop. ...

The echo chamber also makes fertile soil for ignorance, bad ideas, false assumptions, and groupthink. ...

Many New Atheists are victims of this kind of echo chamber speak. In 2014, I shared a bus ride with popular New Atheist Matt Dillahunty. We had a great chat and he’s a terrific fella, but he told me, “As atheists we have to be experts in theology, anthropology, cosmology, geology, and biology.” Two thoughts came to mind: why? and you’re not. That’s not a slight on Dillahunty. It’s merely an observation that one would have to be smarter than Stephen Hawking to be considered a bona fide expert in each of these respective fields. And the only reason I could think as to why he would believe an atheist has to be an expert in all those fields is if he believes atheists need to evangelize their atheism to religious believers. Worryingly, many New Atheists I have debated or spoken to actually boast that they are experts in many or all of those respective fields even when it’s obvious they have no more than a Wikipedia level understanding of theology, for instance. ...

Fundamentalism, whether it’s religious or secular, is a mindset. It means the ‘Other’ doesn’t need to be investigated or enquired upon. It means believing your worldview has the answers to all of life’s questions. It serves to diminish voices and opinions that do not share the adherent’s worldview, while alternative views are dismissed as unworthy of consideration. “It [fundamentalism] provides a binary world of absolutes, of good and evil,” writes Hedges. “Those who oppose the fundamentalist are dismissed as savages, condemned as lesser breeds of human beings, miscreants led astray by Satan or on the wrong side of Western civilization.” All fundamentalists are hostile to new information and intellectual investigations. All fundamentalists seek out information that only confirms their assumptions and worldview. All fundamentalists otherize in a way that reduces the other to a one-dimensional cartoon caricature. Fundamentalism is the antithesis of intellectualism. ...

an interesting exercise is to visit some of the more popular atheist blogs. What you will find is an intellectual black hole, for there really are only three kinds of New Atheist blog articles:
- Attack critics of New Atheism
- Defend leaders of New Atheism
- Ridicule the religious.
And there’s a reason for this. No celebrity or broadly popular New Atheist is qualified to comment with any authority on politics, geo-politics, history, the Middle East, religious scholarship etc. Thus New Atheists are left with only three avenues to make sense of today’s headlines: attack, defend, ridicule. They call this “intellectualism.”

Sunday

ATHEIST FLAME FORM


Dear Bwight Afeeist

I am refreshed and challenged by your unique point of view. You make silence a wonderful thing to look forward to. However I took exception to your recent scribble

I note that:
[X] You were speaking outside your area of expertise
[X] You demonstrated no knowledge of philosophy which is the domain of logic and reason
[X] You demonstrated no knowledge of philosophy of religion which is what you are participating in every time you mention God
[X] You demonstrated no knowledge of the 21st century concepts of the religion that you mentioned

Your attention is drawn to the fact that:
[X] You mindlessly posted the same boring thoughtless cut and paste answers of other atheists with no qualification in the subject area
[X] You repeatedly assumed unwarranted intellectual superiority
[X] You used logical fallacies such as category mistake, strawman fallacy, special pleading and incredulity fallacy
[X] You have no positive argument for atheism

It is recommended that you:
[X] Get an education in philosophy
[X] Devote your life to converting people to atheism in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.
[X] Start up an Atheist Weason Wally to support other people with your unfortunate affliction

QUESTIONS TO UNDERSTAND YOU BETTER:
[X] Are you able to read religious texts in any manner other than identical to a Christian fundamentalist?
[X] Exactly how relevant to daily life is your atheism compared to a-invisiblepinkunicornism, a-fairyism, a-flyingspaghettimonsterism, a-santaclausism, a-toothfairyism and a-leprechaunism?
[X] How does your adopted empiricism, scientism, verificationism and humanism directly and logically flow from a lack of belief in a God?
[X] How does one physically measure a non-physical God?
[X] Were you in the special class at school?
[X] Are you from the shallow end of the gene pool?
[X] Do you want fries with that?
[X] Are you able to answer in something other than grunts or swear words?

Please save this message and review it occasionally to determine your progress toward being;
[X] a tolerable afeeist
[X] a fully-functional human being
[X] integrated into humanity
[X] re-integrated into the wild

If what you don't know can't hurt you, you're practically invulnerable.

Thank you for taking the time to read this flame form.

"It is absolutely safe to say that if you meet somebody who claims to be an atheist, that person is ignorant, stupid or insane." - Dick Dorkins

Thursday

MARK TINDALL "I LOVE YOU (FOR BEV)"

My latest song "I Love You (For Bev) " from the 2016 album "The Place" - original rock available for free download.  http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=13373781

LYRICS

I love you
I love you with all my heart
I love you
I love you with all my soul
I love you
I love you with all my strength
I love you
I love you with all my life

I want you
I want you

Like my Facebook Musician page at https://www.facebook.com/marktindallmusician and get more updates and information regarding my original music.

Hear my original music at http://www.soundclick.com/marktindall - original rock songs for free download.