Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - Imposition

1 ... 6 [7] 8 ... 14
Interzone / Re: Atheism
« on: January 20, 2014, 06:54:02 PM »
Atheism is boring. It accepts the same ethics and cosmology as its parent theistic faith.

Agree with your assertion about secular ethics, for the most part (first premises: individualism, equality).

But cosmology?!


Theists thought the sun revolved around the earth.

If you think modern cosmology is boring, i suggest you read a Paul Davies book, or something.

If you think the amazing, and multi-layered view of reality of science is boring, then i suggest your read some philosophy of science. Learn how physics gives rise to chemistry, how chemistry gives rise to biology, how biology gives rise to pyschology, how psychology gives rise to economics and culture - and you have an amazing mosaic of knowledge that simply dwarfs christian ontology in its scope, unification and ultimately its success (at least pragmatic success - religion can still have psychological, 'subjective' success when measured by standards like transcendence, or alternatively fulfillment, or maybe even happiness - but then again I could believe everyone is equal and be 'happy' about this)

Interzone / Re: Atheism
« on: January 20, 2014, 06:48:17 PM »
The atheist mistakenly assumes that if something is not known or cannot be known theoretically, it is not worthy of belief.  Once again, a belief in only what the individual or collection of individuals think, know, perceive, or feel.  The unknown is not the same as unreal.

I largely agree with your post. I particularly agree with the general point that belief ('faith') is an essential part of being human. It is a source of energy. Despite welcoming the collapse of Xtianity, Nietzsche, for instance, wrote of the utility of belief for driving human mind to higher endeavors.

However, keep in mind that Atheists, on an underlying level, have their own faith and their own mission. They are driven by belief. You cannot 'know' (in sense of having a 100 per cent certain true belief) that the supernatural does not exist. You are simply driven, if an atheist, by the conviction that physicalism captures the stuff the cosmos.

This is not to say that most of the objective evidence does not point towards a physicalist ontology... but just that it does so probabilistically, and not with 100 per cent certainty.

The premise is simple:  the unknown is not a lesser aspect or lesser part of reality, if anything it is primary.  For every one thing that is known, there are ten things that are unknown.  What you don't know could fill a library.

Yes, the unknown is like an open ocean to an explorer, or a christian village to a Viking.

However, do not conflate the unknown with the known-probably-not-to-exist.

It is one thing, from the point of view of knowledge, to not be 'captured by human minds' because you are yet to be reached - another not to be 'captured by human minds' because you don't exist.

Something that is beyond your grasp you cannot put in a basket, alternatively you can't put what doesn't exist in your basket either.

Interzone / Re: "The poor": kill them
« on: January 20, 2014, 02:59:21 AM »
What happens when they hold you up in your car with a knife, or break into your home while your children sleep, perhaps raping one of them and/or stabbing them in a fit of panic?

Do you want to live in a South African type city, where it is unsafe to be anywhere unless it's behind large walls - an effective 'green zone'? Welfare exists not just for the benefit of the poor.

How on earth could someone use a knife to hold you up, especially if you're in a car? I understand most people aren't familiar with real violence, so perhaps simply calling a tool "weapon" makes it suddenly terrifying. Other than that, I can't understand giving in to anyone who tries to threaten with something as manageable as a knife.

Anyway, the answer to your "what to do" question is obvious. You kill them. With bullets. Was that a real question or have I been trolled?

You could also pay someone else to do this for you, if you find blood to be a bit too icky. Same difference. Alternately, if you're more into purity than pragmatism, you could start a cult whose members swear blood oaths to you or whatever.

As to the second part, that issue could be resolved just as easily with slavery as it could with welfare. Why not enslave, imprison, or otherwise punish the poor into absolute compliance?

Begin incredulous stare

Interzone / Re: deductive or prescriptive
« on: January 20, 2014, 02:58:24 AM »
I see the confusion. The aim all along isn't creating value judgments but instead causing results.

In the original article, collective value judgment replaces creating results as an overarching goal. Strangely, results no longer matter much because maintaining ideology is paramount. This is because we ended up best rewarded socially and economically in consistently upholding the ideology regardless of outcome.

Discarding value judgments in the pursuit of an outcome that may or may not fail to fit the ideal narrative or its methods would fit a nihilistic mind.

I think the same confusion still has its claws in the issue.

'Results' imparts a value judgement, at least in the sense you are using it, I think.

People whose ideology you don't like get 'results', they just aren't 'optimal' to you....

Interzone / Re: Atheism
« on: January 18, 2014, 09:35:35 PM »
The first (the text) is indeed patronising and snide. The second is OK.

Interzone / Re: Atheism
« on: January 18, 2014, 09:03:53 PM »
the new ‹bermensch



If there had been a blond, blue-eyed, healthy and strong looking male put under the text, would you have posted this?

Is THIS the new Ubermench?

Or maybe this?

Then again...

But surely not someone who has actually penetrated into the mystery of the cosmos, No.

Interzone / Re: deductive or prescriptive
« on: January 17, 2014, 10:25:49 PM »
What is the difference between:

1. tells you what you should do
2. points out what an optimal course of action is

From which are we better off drawing our conclusions?

I'm guessing you favour the second option.

But 'should' and 'optimal' are cut from the exact same cloth: subjective judgement

Illustration: 'Optimal' under whose interpretation? What is optimal for the deer is not going to be optimal for the lion. Optimal just collapses into Should.

More generally, I cannot see what a 'deductive value system' is. It sounds to me as though 'deductive' is being used to impart some sort of objectivity to some limited class of value judgements: those that are 'optimal', what ever that means.

Nihilism means that NO value judgements, of any sort, follow logically (deductively) from the mind-independent world. This doesn't mean nihilism has no function (personal or subjective), it's just that its philosophical, or objective, function is purely negative.

Interzone / Re: "The poor": kill them
« on: January 16, 2014, 05:14:20 PM »
There are varying income levels which correlate with the degree to which you have your shit together.

Many of us here probably earn less than your average tradesperson. If you are in academia, music, the arts, etc, you will earn less than many/most people, at least for a time. This generalisation is pure nonsense.

It also reflects a rather naive enlightement, blank-slate, view of human nature - where everyone starts on the same level playing field, and so if you end up with less than some other people you don't 'have your shit together'.

There are different starting points:


If you are born into a fucking terrible environment with alcoholic, drug-fucked parents, you are going to struggle. You are going to need welfare. More to the point, your parents will be the recipients of the welfare - but the welfare is for you.

Do we condemn you if you are born into a shit family, before you even have a chance to rise up? Or do people think that strong people are going to overcome the odds, no matter what point they begin from, and that welfare is thus redundant?

A way into this question might be to look at what environments people here were born into. If they are all pretty stable, moral, plentiful ones, then it might be worthwhile considering how things would have turned out had these environments been impoverished - at the fault of parents or not (i.e. place of birth, accidents, etc).

Interzone / Re: "The poor": kill them
« on: January 16, 2014, 05:10:45 PM »
There are so many useless regulations to "help" the poor, I'd rather be left without any government intervention. Poor folk really need to be let go. Then chaos ensues as they freak over how they can't be fed directly by food stamps and such, and then the true weeding out and enrichment of the poor strata begins.

What happens when they hold you up in your car with a knife, or break into your home while your children sleep, perhaps raping one of them and/or stabbing them in a fit of panic?

Do you want to live in a South African type city, where it is unsafe to be anywhere unless it's behind large walls - an effective 'green zone'? Welfare exists not just for the benefit of the poor.

Interzone / Re: deductive or prescriptive
« on: January 16, 2014, 05:05:51 PM »
What is the difference between:

1. tells you what you should do
2. points out what an optimal course of action is

Interzone / Re: Tolkien
« on: January 10, 2014, 07:35:52 PM »
'Prole' is I think the wrong word. Hobbits the are not the proletarians of middle earth. Maybe the dwarves are. The hobbits embody too many bourgeoisie values: (small) landowners, self-employed, protestant work ethic, albeit with a veneer of childish innocense.

So the celebration of the hobbits does not represent a celebration of proles, but of English middle class values. Old liberal values.


Interzone / Re: Tolkien
« on: January 09, 2014, 07:33:57 PM »
I must say I never got stuck on the political or religious overtones in the book, nor was it purely a make-believe fantasy world. It's just a deeply immersive and stimulating story (perhaps more like an ancient saga or fable) that parallels aspects of our own world as perceived through various filters. It is so easy to get pulled into and become so happily lost in that world.

It is.

However I can't help thinking it is a somewhat blatant celebration of conservative, English old liberal values in the face of a rising industrial totalitarianism from the east!

Take the Hobbits. Only they can save the world from the hammer of oppression, for unlike dwarves and men they do not seek power, instead they grow vegetables, carry bourgeois values, and live a quiet life drinking tea and having village fates.

The answer to totalitarianism lies in apolitical, non adventurous little folk, and not in overt heroism and statesmanship (men), war craft and iron (dwarves), or overt mysticism (elves).

Interzone / Re: Frank Schaeffer - Why I Converted To Eastern Orthodoxy
« on: January 08, 2014, 05:53:56 PM »
I think religion's misinterpreted

Are you suggesting it does not incorporate significant claims about the world, claims that are 'ontological'?

the reason orthodoxy is winning is this

I would suggest another possibility is that only orthodoxy has the balls to go all out and reject a modern physicalist ontology altogether. I.e. It's a matter of All or nothing.

As to the last link, it's true there is more and more research suggesting we are hard wired for religion, whether as an adaptation or accidental side effect of other mental adaptations. More specifically we are hard wired to perceive agency or intentionality behind natural events. There is just a huge tension between this and what we know about the real underlying causes of natural events. There is a real conflict between two ways of looking at the world, the intuitive (who did it?) and reflective/scientific (what did it?), that is increasingly antagonistic. This might well be creating the conditions in which only religions that reject, from the start, explanations of natural events in terms of blind mechanisms can survive - by isolating themselves.

Of course, I could be misinterpreting orthodoxy.

Interzone / Re: Frank Schaeffer - Why I Converted To Eastern Orthodoxy
« on: January 07, 2014, 12:11:00 AM »
I cannot understand how Orthodox religion can be a 'solution' to any ideological dilemma- in a complete sense.

Its ontology would be highly problematic to a complete worldview for anyone interested in such issues, as opposed merely to issues related to 'transcendence' or other nice social, psychological, and ethical offshoots of the theology.

Perhaps more mainstream Anglo-Saxon versions of Christianity have been stripped of meaning, at least in part, because they are no longer compatible with what we know about the mechanisms behind nature, and these denominations have attempted to integrate - awkwardly. Christianity devoid of it's ontology can only result in humanism - helping refugees, universal love, singing pleasant songs in church, etc etc.

I can see how Orthodox Christianity might represent a more 'internally consistent' version of Christianity - but unfortunately internal coherence does not represent completeness, unless you want to live in a metaphysical bubble, grumbling at science documentaries with in semi-conscious non-comfort.

1 ... 6 [7] 8 ... 14