Journal Entry #362
February 25th, 2011
My position is not one that many take when it comes to Atheism, religious discussions or discussing philosophical matters related to the concept of truth. I often argue with those who profess atheism just as much as those who profess faith. I worry that one will become what they condemn just behind a different ideal. I have been accused several times of pandering to the religious. I seem to be in the no man’s land and to be honest I have no problem with this.
I am ultimately a realist who follows what I define as truth which is all that is but I am not above admitting I can be wrong and I am willing to listen, to try and understand another’s position. I will in no way condone any acts that are harmful but I will not exude an attitude of righteousness if I can possibly avoid it.
This makes me unpopular with both crowds most of the time but that is fine I am looking to deal with those who are willing to actually change this world for all not just for themselves and a few others, often that will entail others who do not follow your view of life.
The following conversation will demonstrate my position.
Disgusting! Pro-lifers murdering or campaigning for the murder of doctors. This is how religion harms us all.
Rachel Maddow – Anti-Abortion Extremists Soliciting Murder
October 20, 2010 on MSNBC – via http://www.AtheistMedia.com
Gary David Currie……….. A_____ it is not religion that harms us at all it is people acting on ideas that are simply not true. They want the goodies and then have to follow the rules to get them, this is where the problems begin. I try to address the core issues as well as the symptoms. Keep up the good work.
I feel the battle is one of engaging in defining the truth but that is just me.
1st Atheist………Potato, Po-tah-to. Religion IS a set of ideas that are not true. And while I agree defining truth OUGHT to be the focus, I find that those who invoke faith don’t care if their beliefs are true or not.
Gary David Currie………… Really they do much more than you think they just define truth very differently. I have discovered a huge problem is that we are talking to different languages. I for one do not want a battle and battle lines drawn this will accomplish very little in my view. There are more people than you can imagine who are open to discussion and there are many who are not.
In the end they are not going anywhere and that is the truth so I personally look to build bridges while still promoting what is actually true. Again that is me.
Believe me I am not easy on them and I am no accomodationalist as I have been told at times. I am hard on the challenge.
I write very thought provoking offensive music and articles at times but I still remain to the truth.
I find that many are just as passionate about their position and they really believe it is love that guides them.
I see so many becoming what they condemn. Battle lines drawn. creating more divisions and to me that is not the answer.
2nd Atheist……….This is terrible, what is the world coming to?
“…they just define truth very differently” this kind of relativism is so asinine. Sorry but there’s truth and there’s make believe. It is possible for one side to simply to be wrong.
“I for one do not want a battle… this will accomplish very little… I look to build bridges.” You claim not to be a one but this sounds remarkably like accommodationist bullshit to me!
Assassinating abortion doctors is flat out religious fanaticism. It’s carried out by faith heads because of their religious views: a direct logical pathway from religious belief to execution. Your response is contemptible.
Gary David Currie………. Ok S______ you are lumping all people who are religious into one giant category. You have called what I have said bullshit and yet you know absolutely nothing about me. You are basically representing what you condemn.
Have you taken the time to know many different people off many different faiths?
You might want to try asking some questions before you so quickly condemn.
This is terrible, really. Any position can be taken to be religious. I am definitely an advocate of what is true but what right do I have to tell people what to believe. I address the actions from these beliefs but ultimately I could be wrong on what I profess as well. I am strong in my convictions but I am not going to be an ass about it.
You equate the religious view with the action and they are not the same. For example Jainism is a religion of peace with no tendency towards violence. While I believe what they practise to ultimately be not true what problem should I have if they are professing peace and non-violence?
Wow, to call my response contemptible shows the same attitude that you profess to religious fanaticism towards me.
This is exactly what I am talking about you appear to have drawn battle lines when there are many people of faith who will be peaceful.
Do you not support the right to practise ones religion? or would you want all to follow the way you think? I will lead by example and continue positive communication as I see this as the path to change. I will not in any way support negative action from people but it is the action I will address and the justification of that particular action without lumping all who practise faith into one pile.
Generally the people you are referring to are not the ones who are going to change.
Ask any of the Christians or people of other faith I talk with if they think I am an accommodationist. It usually seems to come from people who are atheists.
I have been called this a few times but only by other atheists this was a Christian response;
>Oh my goodness!!! You “pandering” to theological viewpoint?!! You’re about as “pandering” as you are “moderate”. (LOL)
The difference is that you:
1. Have actually researched both the physical and theological with as open of a mind as possible. (Everyone develops certain leanings and biases with time, ESPECIALLY those who don’t think they have!)
2. Are personally on a journey that HAS taken you down many roads.
3. You don’t claim that you’ve 100% arrived and have concluded your studies. (That doesn’t make you a moderate or pandering — that means you are seeking knowledge and are still thirsty)<
It is funny that both sides in a conflict usually call themselves FREEDOM FIGHTERS.
Seek the truth always
Gary David Currie
After I wrote this post the person I was referring to in the post answered. Originally I gave him time to respond and he did not. I will post his response in its entirety in fairness to the context of the discussion.
2nd Atheist….. “you are lumping all people who are religious into one giant category”
No I don’t think so. You are probably a very good advocate for the free thinking community and I applaud you for that. I am simply commenting on your specific remarks in… relation to Andrews post, which was clearly about a group of fanatics and not a group of moderates. Nevertheless, the moderates are part of the problem because they make a virtue out of faith and provide legitimacy for these nutters.
“Have you taken the time to know many different people off many different faiths?”
Err, yes I have and thank you for asking, are you proposing a pop quiz, LOL?
“Any position can be taken to be religious.”
Don’t get your panties in a wad Gary I said your post was contemptible, I am not summing up your entire character. Nor am I telling people what to believe and nor did not infer that you were either. I am not equating religious views with the action and I know about Jainism so please forgo the RE lesson and the straw man. But please answer me this: do you not think that there is a direct logical pathway from a fanatical religious belief to the execution of these abortion doctors? Is religion faith not the root of these murders. I suppose 911 had nothing to do with religious dogma… just another idea of truth perhaps?
“Wow, to call my response contemptible shows the same attitude that you profess to religious fanaticism towards me…”
Sorry but it doesn’t, I am significantly more contemptuous of murdering abortion providers than your response. What is contemptible is that you seem to believe that ‘building bridges’ is the appropriate response to fanaticism. I am appreciative of all approaches, confrontational or otherwise, they all have a place and a value but accommodating such fanatical religious views I don’t. I also don’t think it’s that effective – even for the moderates. Finally to reduce it to religious relativism is deeply misguided and shows callous disregard for the actual truth. It probably also verges on some sort of ecumenicalism.
“This is exactly what I am talking about you appear to have drawn battle lines when there are many people of faith who will be peaceful.”
No I’m not because my response was not about the ‘peaceful’ but the fanatics who shoot abortion providers… and yes I am happy to draw battle lines here as opposed to building bridges. You clearly want to turn this into an argument about moderates and I have already briefly given you my view on this. But let me add that there may very well be moderate believers but their religions are predominantly not moderate. All the tenets of this religious fundamentalism are derived from their religious texts. The faithful can become more liberal and one would hope for more of this, but the result is just another denomination – the fundamental religious text remains unaltered.
Of course I support a persons right to practice their religion but I would also like to see more critical thinking and less religious dogma. And hopefully a greater wall of separation between church and state. If I have misunderstood you then I’ll gladly admit to being wrong and change my mind – that’s one of the perks isn’t it? So I would be glad to read your views further, as you can mine – just browse my profile for notes, blogs, links and posts.
Gary David Currie……. I don’t want to turn this into an argument about anything in particular. You made some accusations about my comments and I responded. Now we are having a dialogue.
Great.. I pretty much agree with your assumptions and comments.
My website… www.therfreeman.net
One aside though I really think the term straw man is being overused these days.
Moderates not at all I actually wrote a post about them . Saying that being a moderate is like going to the Islamic terrorist camps because you wan to get in shape. as an example.
I will check your writing out..I think you will find we agree more than we disagree. Believe me when I tell you I am more than an advocate for the free thinking community I just advocate truth not militant behaviour leading towards the same actions that one condemns. It is fine line to walk.
2nd Atheist……..Straw men are over used so I call it when I see it… but militant atheism is also an overused straw man. Just so we are clear, because I think there may be some misunderstanding, when I said “this is terrible, what is the world coming to,” I… was referring to the murders not your comments. I should have been clearer before going on to comment on your remarks.
However, let me get this right, you say we agree but then copy and paste our dialogue onto your blog asserting that it demonstrates your position, which is that I have become what I condemn? I would appreciate it if you could elaborate on exactly how and I have become what I condemn because I disagree.
So my condemning of the murder of abortion doctors as fanaticism and recognising your ‘bridge building strategy’ with the nutters as somewhat accommodationist makes me a fanatic. And how exactly is ‘offensive’ music and articles bridge building? Anyway, it really seems like you want to pick a fight about strategy and the ‘don’t be a dick’ argument. If that’s what you want then I’m happy to discuss this.
What does it even mean to say that “one will become what they condemn just behind a different ideal?” It sounds like your alluding to some kind of militant fundamentalist atheism again. Finally, I wonder if you’ll so eagerly copy and paste my reposts.