« "The Story of Suzie" shows strangeness of religion | Main | Support individual searching for meaning »

July 13, 2009

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Well anyone who disputes such indisputable truths... is simply quite despicable.


Damn it!! The very least you could have done is to come up with one or more that I could dispute. :D)

i think that (9) is questionable. I am not saying that societal norms or laws are divinely inspired, but I would not say that they are purely human. I think that some laws are evolutionarily inspired. I am, of course, quibbling over the language.

Obviously (9)'s intent is that societal norms or laws are not divine. I also agree with the rest of the list whole-heartily.

This reads like a list of one's faith in Materialism. That is, the immaterial doesn't exist because it is undemonstrable, a condition imposed by materiality, which as an assertion (rather than as argument) doesn't address the metaphysical question of Reality or logically address its antithesis, immateriality. Immateriality doesn't exist because it's not material? Hmm.

What I dispute, I guess, is that these assertions are not "truths" but rather, beliefs, one's, I might hasten to add, that I generally agree with... as an article of faith. Now, maybe you're being ironic when you speak of Truth?

j.tucker, I agree -- the thought about evolution ran through my mind as I was writing (9), but I let it run right by without attending to it sufficiently. in the next evolution of the principles, I'll change this one to reflect your excellent point. (I did intend to mean that humans are the product of evolution, but the meaning needs to be more explicit.)

ric, how is the universe a "belief"? I don't get what you're trying to say. Actually, I'll not being ironic when I speak of truth. The irony came in the word "indisputable."

So, yes, I'll agree that there is a possibility that reality consists of metaphysical stuff as well as physical stuff. But like I said, currently there is no demonstrable, convincing evidence of anything metaphysical (of course, it wouldn't be a thing, as you implied in your comment).

Principle 7 allows people, including you, to believe in non-material reality. And even to experience it (or believe that you have experienced it). But these truths refer to consensual or public reality, that which we humans share in common.

Sure, immateriality may exist. So might BigFoot, aliens who visit Earth, and lots of other unproven entities, including God. I'm not speaking here of "may." I'm pointing to what we know exists because there is demonstrable evidence of it.

Brian posted:

"(9) Societal norms or laws are purely human, not divine."


j.tucker responded:

"i think that (9) is questionable. I am not saying that societal norms or laws are divinely inspired, but I would not say that they are purely human."

-- What? That's utter nonsense. I must disagree. If societal norms or laws are NOT "purely human", then where the hell do you think they came from?

To say that "societal norms or laws " are not entirely derived from human intelligence, is crap.

Societal norms and laws ARE created by humans, because they are derived soley from humans. Where else do you think they came from, if not from humans? Certainly not from animals or plants or stones or the moon.

To say that "societal norms or laws" are not derived entirely from humans, from the thoughts and ideas and intelligence of humans, is to say that they came from somewhere else... either from non-humans such as animals and plants, or from some supposed extraterrestrial beings. But there is simply no evidence of that. And "societal" relates entirely to human society, not to animals or plants.

"I think that some laws are evolutionarily inspired."

-- And how would that be? That doesn;t make sense. And even if true, it would still be "inspired" in humans.

"I am, of course, quibbling over the language."

-- Merely quibbling? I don't think so. What you said simply makes no rational or logical sense.

What # (9) says, is that "societal norms or laws" are NOT divine. And that is true, unless of course you consider humans to be "divine"... but that is an entirely different matter and assumption.


Dear Brian,

You said in your post,"Of course, I'm me and you're you. What is crystal clear to me may elicit an /I don't see it that way in you.

So share your own viewpoint if you disagree with mine.

But you have allowed a certificate in the first comment from [email protected] that "Well anyone who disputes such indisputable truths... is simply quite despicable".

Read it, without any malice towards anyone. Nevertheless, I do not disagree with you.

Rakesh, I'm not sure what you are trying to say, but did you somehow fail to understand that my comment was meant only in jest? If you misunderstood, just relax and lighten up a bit. Don't take everything so seriously.

To [email protected],

I do not consider instinct to be the same as intelligence. If you do, then that is where we differ. I am under the impression that there is an evolutionary instinct that controls a portion of us humans.

For example: incest. There is an instinctual drive that keeps the majority of humans away from such an act. Incest is both illegal and in most cultures morally wrong or taboo. This instinct could have come into prominence because the tribes that did not have it were slowly killed off due to inbreeding.

I do not know where instincts come from, but I do not believe that they came from the "thoughts and ideas and intelligence of humans."

j. tucker,

I do not consider instinct to be the same as intelligence. But "an evolutionary instinct" within humans is still "purely human, not divine" as Brian stated. So "societal norms or laws", even if they derive from "an evolutionary instinct", are still clearly of a human origin, and not of "divine" origin... which I believe was Brian's point.

"incest. There is an instinctual drive that keeps the majority of humans away from such an act. Incest is both illegal and in most cultures morally wrong or taboo. This instinct could have come into prominence because the tribes that did not have it were slowly killed off due to inbreeding."

-- So what. That is still of a human origin, not a "divine" origin.

"I do not know where instincts come from, but I do not believe that they came from the "thoughts and ideas and intelligence of humans."

-- Perhaps not, but the "societal norms or laws" eventually did.

To [email protected],

I completely agree.

"ric, how is the universe a "belief"?

As a concept held to be true, no different than the concept "God". It's the holding that makes a belief regardless of its "truth", truth being, as best as I understand it, a correspondence of mappings, all cognition and perception being mappings of neurological events.

In my reading of your post, the title as well as the capitalization of Truth sets a rhetorical tone of certainty and absoluteness, something that always makes me feel uneasy. Allowing for other's disputations doesn't mitigate this impression, as people commonly disagree.

Capital T truth, as does the shift from "true" to "truth", adds the emotion of certainty to the idea of correspondence making it rigid and permanent. This is easy to do in a conceptual system since is devoid of the complexity of sensory data.

My thinking is that the specific purpose of the human impulse toward religion is to deliver people from the anxiety of complexity and its attendant uncertainty through an act of vast oversimplification. Since the conceptual system, already a practical oversimplification, tends to compex-ify people seem to need to simplify even it by severely restricting thought through simple dogma, which the world's religions provide successful time tested varieties.

People, being innately confused, look outside themselves for answers to their uncertainty particularly to the archetypical parent of any authority, a natural enough susceptibility to being manipulated. This looking outside helps to verify conclusions one has reached, since much is based on a common set of perceptions humans share. The stories we invent to lend meaning to our perceptions circulate and reverberate in the culture forming a kind of stasis that further stabilizes thought and anxiety while creating proto-dogma which can be mined by authoritarian and institutionally oriented people.

The goal of the "Churchless" by this line of reasoning would be to embrace complexity and uncertainty, which in my view includes eschewing notions of Truth.

How odd...I'm one of the most devoutly religious people I know, and yet at the same time I can't really find any cause to debate with any of the things you've said. The only one is number 3. I have read of experiments done with the brain that suggests that memory is stored in something other than the brain. Of course, they don't know or have yet to determine what that is, but they have "proven" or at least shown that it's possible for memory to be retained even if parts of the brain containing memory are removed. I am unable to present such evidence here, but I have read about it.


Other than that, while I don't agree with the "truths" in their entirety, I am unable to find a reasonable basis on which to argue with them.

J. Tucker - as far as I am aware anthropologists mostly think that the incest taboo is not instinctual but comes from the advantages of exogamy, from social factors.

TheKnight, I enjoy your honest perspective. You're the sort of religious person I like to interact with.

As I often say, there's nothing wrong with having unprovable beliefs. We all have them. It's when we believe that our beliefs should be accepted by other people without good reason that troubles begin.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Welcome


  • Welcome to the Church of the Churchless. If this is your first visit, click on "About this site--start here" in the Categories section below.
  • HinesSight
    Visit my other weblog, HinesSight, for a broader view of what's happening in the world of your Church unpastor, his wife, and dog.
  • BrianHines.com
    Take a look at my web site, which contains information about a subject of great interest to me: me.
  • Twitter with me
    Join Twitter and follow my tweets about whatever.
  • I Hate Church of the Churchless
    Can't stand this blog? Believe the guy behind it is an idiot? Rant away on our anti-site.