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Old 27th August 2019, 08:23 PM   #41
Robin
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?


"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:12
That is not what "through a glass, darkly" means. It does mean "pessimistically", it means seeing very unclearly.
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Old 27th August 2019, 08:25 PM   #42
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Yes, it's from Storm. This is one of the best versions:

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Old 28th August 2019, 05:41 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by wasapi View Post
Just personal experience, but I have known atheists that were not at all pessimists. Quite the opposite. However, yes, I have also known some who were so pessimistic as to be intolerable. The difference seemed to be if the individual had a sense of humor. There is nothing quite as stark as a humorless atheist.

How about a humorless fundamentalist?

Or several of them, since they rarely seem to travel alone?
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Old 28th August 2019, 09:37 AM   #44
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I'm an Atheist and a supporter of Dunfermline Athletic FC. You have to be an optimist to be the later, and believing they are a good soccer team probably takes up all the belief my body and brain can hold!
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Old 28th August 2019, 10:13 AM   #45
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(Just in case the OP responds)

This question, or variations on it is a frequently on heard from atheists by theists. The ego does rebel against the notion that there will be a permanent death, and to some this may make all the actions of life futile. To be fair though some religious doctrines can be interpreted in this way as well, making all of earthly existence meaningless and almost created a longing for death to be reunited with a spiritual existence again.
Buddhism is often given as an example of spirituality that does not require an active God. I would also suggest that the OP look into Epicureanism if one wants a philosophy from the western tradition that provides some comfort in the face of pain and ultimate nonbeing.

As an atheist myself I see no reason why atheists are more pessimistic (I guess this is what you mean by ”seeing the world though a glass darkly”). My mood is more directly affected by material things such as whether I am hungry, tired, or thirsty, than any existential angst. It took me a long time to really accept that for all I know the material world is all we get, and once I stop functioning in this material world, I stop being. But once this is accepted, it is a source of calm relief actually. Wanting to be responsible for an existence for all eternity makes me feel tired just contemplating it. I just have the responsibility of making the world better for those around me in the here and now.

That is enough Scorpion.

Any more is just your subconscious making irrational demands that are silly once you unravel their physical purpose and meaning.
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Old 28th August 2019, 01:15 PM   #46
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When I was religious I thought I should not have children for this corrupt world would very likely rob their eternal happiness by making them infidels,
and when I became irreligious/infidel I thought I should still not have children for other reasons.
I guess I'm not very upbeat about life.
Although I'm known to be pessimistic and humorous at the same time.
Also when I was religious I focused a lot on doomsday stuff..
Now I can't wait for WW3.
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Old 28th August 2019, 02:00 PM   #47
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I'm a totaloptimist. I reckon it's all in our genes.
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Old 28th August 2019, 02:15 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?

In the long run, what difference would it make?
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Old 28th August 2019, 02:27 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Yes, it's from Storm. This is one of the best versions:

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Tkingdoll? Wow, I had no idea.

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Old 30th August 2019, 07:35 AM   #50
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I refer to myself as an optimistic pessimist.

I always expect the absolute worst in every situation.

That way, even in a worst case scenario, at least I saw it coming! Everything else is a pleasant surprise.

For example, I'm totally stoked because an airplane didn't fall on my house and kill me in my sleep last night. I'm already a step ahead!
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Old 30th August 2019, 09:55 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by Hellbound View Post
I refer to myself as an optimistic pessimist.

I always expect the absolute worst in every situation.

That way, even in a worst case scenario, at least I saw it coming! Everything else is a pleasant surprise.

For example, I'm totally stoked because an airplane didn't fall on my house and kill me in my sleep last night. I'm already a step ahead!
Interesting, that is exactly the way I see things as well!
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Old 30th August 2019, 12:18 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?


"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:12
Nope. I'm an optimist despite some fairly challenging episodes in my life. I enjoy my work and always have a smile and a friendly word for everyone I meet.

Don't need any god or spirits for that.

Back in the 2008 crash, I was left without a home and ca. 1 million in debt. Yet here i am today, no debt and own my own home outright. No god/s did that. No spirits did that. I did it. The hard way. Without any imaginary spooks to assist me.
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Old 30th August 2019, 12:21 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?


"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:12
Oh and before I forget, YOU believe it is wrong to mitigate suffering at all. Because karma.
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Old 30th August 2019, 12:28 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
Oh and before I forget, YOU believe it is wrong to mitigate suffering at all. Because karma.
I have never said we should not help the suffering. Nor that we should inflict it.

I have said suffering forces growth and change in the soul.

I have said all souls will ultimately be redeemed, and there is no hellfire.

We progress from one lifetime to the next and face karma from past lives.
The spirits I have listened to speaking through trance mediums have said we can help ourselves, and we do not always have to suffer to learn. We can also work for the good, and settle our karma by service to others instead of doing it all the hard way.
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Last edited by Scorpion; 30th August 2019 at 12:31 PM.
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Old 30th August 2019, 12:35 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I have never said we should not help the suffering. Nor that we should inflict it.

I have said suffering forces growth and change in the soul.

I have said all souls will ultimately be redeemed, and there is no hellfire.

We progress from one lifetime to the next and face karma from past lives.
The spirits I have listened to speaking through trance mediums have said we can help ourselves, and we do not always have to suffer to learn. We can also work for the good, and settle our karma by service to others instead of doing it all the hard way.
Dude if you need an excuse to be a psychopath just say so.

"Suffering is okay because it makes you stronger" makes you the bad guy from Saw, not better then the rest of us.
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Old 30th August 2019, 01:41 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I have never said we should not help the suffering. Nor that we should inflict it.
Correct.

Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I have said suffering forces growth and change in the soul.
Correct.

Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I have said all souls will ultimately be redeemed, and there is no hellfire.
Correct

Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
We progress from one lifetime to the next and face karma from past lives.
The spirits I have listened to speaking through trance mediums have said we can help ourselves, and we do not always have to suffer to learn. We can also work for the good, and settle our karma by service to others instead of doing it all the hard way.
And there is your blunder. Morally, in your system of belief, you are obliged to NOT mitigate suffering at all because to do so would interfere with someone else's opportunity to grow and change and develop spiritually. Who are you to interfere with someone else's spiritual journey? By mitigating anyone's suffering, you might well be consigning them to have to repeat an incarnation to learn the lessons that you stopped by your intervention. Thus, in your system of belief, the correct and moral course of action is to let people suffer. It is, after all, their karma and something they must do in this life or the next, or the next, or the next. Are you going to intervene and condemn a suffering person to have to repeat the same suffering because you stopped it this time around the reincarnation merry-go-round? Or are you going to just let them suffer because they are "learning" valuable lessons?

This is where your crank belief fails. You, by your system, are morally bound to NOT helping the suffering because that hinders their "spiritual" development as a "soul".

Are you going to help some homeless person in need? According to your belief, you shouldn't because that would hinder their upward progression "spiritually".

It could be that you will help such a person. But that would be you looking out for your karma at the expense of the homeless persons karma. Just a tad narcissistic, no? You are OK and the devil take the hindmost, right?
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Old 30th August 2019, 02:01 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?
Well perhaps if the religious stopped creating so much suffering in the first place atheists would see the world in a better light?
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Old 30th August 2019, 02:42 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I have never said we should not help the suffering. Nor that we should inflict it.

I have said suffering forces growth and change in the soul.

I have said all souls will ultimately be redeemed, and there is no hellfire.

We progress from one lifetime to the next and face karma from past lives.
The spirits I have listened to speaking through trance mediums have said we can help ourselves, and we do not always have to suffer to learn. We can also work for the good, and settle our karma by service to others instead of doing it all the hard way.
Credulous nonsense sheathed in new age lingo.

Why is it that every individual who has ever explained to me about their 'past lives" was some shining something-or-other rather than a farmer, builder or stable hand?

I've met "Warriors," "Queens," "Courtesans," etc. Sounds like too many chiefs and not enough Indians, but where's the fun in having a past life if it wasn't glamorous?
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Old 30th August 2019, 03:05 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by BStrong View Post
Credulous nonsense sheathed in new age lingo.

Why is it that every individual who has ever explained to me about their 'past lives" was some shining something-or-other rather than a farmer, builder or stable hand?

I've met "Warriors," "Queens," "Courtesans," etc. Sounds like too many chiefs and not enough Indians, but where's the fun in having a past life if it wasn't glamorous?
Have you ever had feelings of having been somewhere before that you know you had not been to, or things like that ?

I have, when I was a boy I visited the maritime museum, and I came to a cabinet with Nelsons sword in it. I seemed to recognise it and I felt a flood of emotion. I do not think I was Nelson, but I think I might have been a sailor on his ship. Because his crew all loved him like a father.
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Old 30th August 2019, 03:09 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Have you ever had feelings of having been somewhere before that you know you had not been to, or things like that ?

I have, when I was a boy I visited the maritime museum, and I came to a cabinet with Nelsons sword in it. I seemed to recognise it and I felt a flood of emotion. I do not think I was Nelson, but I think I might have been a sailor on his ship. Because his crew all loved him like a father.
I've had just about every "feeling" a human can experience but never assumed that those feelings were caused by invisible forces, spirits, ghosts, gods or angels.

I've had a pretty good time living my life as is w/o any imaginary friends or lives.
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Old 30th August 2019, 04:30 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Have you ever had feelings of having been somewhere before that you know you had not been to, or things like that ?

I have, when I was a boy I visited the maritime museum, and I came to a cabinet with Nelsons sword in it. I seemed to recognise it and I felt a flood of emotion. I do not think I was Nelson, but I think I might have been a sailor on his ship. Because his crew all loved him like a father.

This is a good illustration of the difference between yourself and the unbelievers who spar with you here. You seem to recognise the sword and automatically go for some mystical explanation. An explanation that sees you as a sailor on Nelson's ship.

No other more down to earth explanation of your recognition of the sword gets any consideration whatsoever.
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Old 30th August 2019, 04:37 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
Correct.

Correct.

Correct

And there is your blunder. Morally, in your system of belief, you are obliged to NOT mitigate suffering at all because to do so would interfere with someone else's opportunity to grow and change and develop spiritually. Who are you to interfere with someone else's spiritual journey? By mitigating anyone's suffering, you might well be consigning them to have to repeat an incarnation to learn the lessons that you stopped by your intervention. Thus, in your system of belief, the correct and moral course of action is to let people suffer. It is, after all, their karma and something they must do in this life or the next, or the next, or the next. Are you going to intervene and condemn a suffering person to have to repeat the same suffering because you stopped it this time around the reincarnation merry-go-round? Or are you going to just let them suffer because they are "learning" valuable lessons?

This is where your crank belief fails. You, by your system, are morally bound to NOT helping the suffering because that hinders their "spiritual" development as a "soul".

Are you going to help some homeless person in need? According to your belief, you shouldn't because that would hinder their upward progression "spiritually".

It could be that you will help such a person. But that would be you looking out for your karma at the expense of the homeless persons karma. Just a tad narcissistic, no? You are OK and the devil take the hindmost, right?

I would like to see a considered answer to this also Scorpion, as I recall having you backed against the wall, with similar questions on other threads. I recall something about the earth becoming a nicer place, so not so suitable for causing the suffering needed for spiritual development, on another thread. Never did get an answer to that one.
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Old 30th August 2019, 04:48 PM   #63
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Let's see, I could believe that not following some bronze-age rules laid down by guys who wanted to keep the sheep-herders in line can condemn me to eternal torment; or...
Just live my life and try to be nice to my fellow humans. Hmm, it's a difficult problem....
NOT!
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Old 30th August 2019, 05:17 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Let's see, I could believe that not following some bronze-age rules laid down by guys who wanted to keep the sheep-herders in line can condemn me to eternal torment; or...
Just live my life and try to be nice to my fellow humans. Hmm, it's a difficult problem....
NOT!

Such a dilemma true.

The prospects of getting a "get out of eternal torment card" seem to be slim, and Christian scriptural experts, seem to struggle with the messages in the Bible relating to this.

Luke 13:23, Matthew 7:14, Matt. 22:14, and other excepts regarding narrow gates and such, must give believers some anxiety. Especially those with big arses. On the positive side there should be lots for the saved to drool over, as they gaze in delight at the torment of the damned, as promised by Saint Tertullian.
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Old 31st August 2019, 01:54 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Is that from "Storm"? Gonna have to watch some Minchin tomorrow.

ETA: Or tonight. That's just as awesome as the first time. More Tim tomorrow.
Believing in God does not justify optimism. Since `Many are called, but few are chosen' and impossible commands such as `One thing you lack [for eternal life]: go and sell all you have and give to the poor', Christians have every reason to be pessimistic about their personal future. At least, atheists are free from this kind of anxiety.

It is another thing to invent a god according to our desires. But you have to be a little silly to believe in something you've invented. Isn't it?
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Old 31st August 2019, 07:26 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
Well perhaps if the religious stopped creating so much suffering in the first place atheists would see the world in a better light?

I don't know about the world, but we'd probably see the religious in a better light.
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Old 31st August 2019, 07:29 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Have you ever had feelings of having been somewhere before that you know you had not been to, or things like that ?

I have, when I was a boy I visited the maritime museum, and I came to a cabinet with Nelsons sword in it. I seemed to recognise it and I felt a flood of emotion. I do not think I was Nelson, but I think I might have been a sailor on his ship. Because his crew all loved him like a father.

Maybe you were someone he used the sword on. Got any French or Spanish ancestors?

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Old 31st August 2019, 11:56 PM   #68
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the Victory must have been crowded with all the spiritual antecedents of all the millions of small boys who jumped up and down when they saw Nelson's sword
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Old 1st September 2019, 06:37 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Let's see, I could believe that not following some bronze-age rules laid down by guys who wanted to keep the sheep-herders in line can condemn me to eternal torment; or...
Just live my life and try to be nice to my fellow humans. Hmm, it's a difficult problem....
NOT!
Actually it makes you a better person than the believer who is only charitable and helpful in the expectation of a reward later on.
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Old 1st September 2019, 06:49 AM   #70
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Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
Actually it makes you a better person than the believer who is only charitable and helpful in the expectation of a reward later on.
And than those who use their belief to justify hatred, not only of those who believe otherwise, but of other races, LGBT people, and even women.
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Old 1st September 2019, 07:22 AM   #71
Filippo Lippi
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
And than those who use their belief to justify hatred, not only of those who believe otherwise, but of other races, LGBT people, and even women.
Their suffering at the hands of religious nut jobs helps everyone's karma. See also: bullying in Steiner schools
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Old 1st September 2019, 03:15 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Have you ever had feelings of having been somewhere before that you know you had not been to, or things like that ?

I have, when I was a boy I visited the maritime museum, and I came to a cabinet with Nelsons sword in it. I seemed to recognise it and I felt a flood of emotion. I do not think I was Nelson, but I think I might have been a sailor on his ship. Because his crew all loved him like a father.
Yes, this is what is often referred to as "deja vu" and has been studied and is most likely caused by memory glitches. https://www.sciencealert.com/deja-vu...ty-anne-cleary

This is a pop-sci type article but it references studies done and is a simple description of the phenomena.
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Old 1st September 2019, 03:29 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by The Norseman View Post
Yes, this is what is often referred to as "deja vu" and has been studied and is most likely caused by memory glitches. https://www.sciencealert.com/deja-vu...ty-anne-cleary

This is a pop-sci type article but it references studies done and is a simple description of the phenomena.

I would have though most people would have read about the deja vu phenomena and know the explanations given - or at least know there where plausible explanations. Scorpion however doesn't know of this or just prefers the spiritual explanation?
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Old 1st September 2019, 05:33 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
I would have though most people would have read about the deja vu phenomena and know the explanations given - or at least know there where plausible explanations. Scorpion however doesn't know of this or just prefers the spiritual explanation?
Well, I'm not certain; I guess it can go either way.
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Old 1st September 2019, 08:32 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?
No, because there are other ways to mitigate suffering.
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Old 1st September 2019, 08:46 PM   #76
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Old 2nd September 2019, 11:10 PM   #77
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Having no underlying spiritual beliefs to mitigate suffering, are atheists inevitably seeing the world through a glass darkly?
The Christian democratic states in WW2 were pulverized within weeks by the Germans, only the Orthodox/secular Greeks and godless Soviets really put up a good fight against the German advance. The Soviet ideology was spiritual in the sense of being animated by living dogma.

Spirituality should not be about feeling devout. Sentimentality precludes judgment. Mystics, shamans, and sham philosophers have their heads in the clouds. Philosophy in particular has shed it's formerly scientific character and has been made a trade of fools. It went off-the-rails when individuals such as Socrates and Parmenides turned their back on the observation of the senses and Protagoras came to the forefront with his controversial arguments.

The only clear-headed people today seem to be men of science. Consequently, every scientist as well as inventors who endeavor to investigate and discover the forces of nature can be considered spiritual, since they serve life. Every commodity you enjoy today is a product of science.

Theologians and priests run away from problems and contradictions when it suits them, such as Augustine, C. S. Lewis, and Albert Schweitzer. The Christians are probably the most pessimistic religionists, only rivaled by Buddhists (who are not atheists), despite Buddhism's realistic attitude towards suffering.

Catholicism eliminates effort by assuring forgiveness for sins while Protestantism eliminates effort by overemphasizing belief. Calvinism teaches a grotesque perversion of fate's operations by doing away with free will altogether.

In fact, most surviving religions seem to have degenerated into a fatalistic form, including Hinduism and Islam. Their adherents typically do not desire self-responsibility and prefer to leave their affairs to "god". I believe it was Julian "the Apostate" who was the first to accuse Christianity of being Oriental, for it has abandoned every sound notion promulgated by the Greeks/Romans.

Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:12
How convenient of you to omit the preceding verse and the context.

In this letter, "Paul" condemns knowledge without life, suggests that the pursuit of knowledge without application can barbarize. Ironically, the sovereignty of reason was originally proclaimed by Christianity before it shunned this faculty which has been generously bestowed upon mankind by a kind universe. Deists are closer to "god" than theists. Thomas Paine's Age of Reason is a bible in itself.

Last edited by ehhz; 2nd September 2019 at 11:14 PM.
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Old 3rd September 2019, 02:37 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by ehhz View Post
Philosophy in particular has shed it's formerly scientific character and has been made a trade of fools. It went off-the-rails when individuals such as Socrates and Parmenides turned their back on the observation of the senses and Protagoras came to the forefront with his controversial arguments.
.
You don't realize that you are doing philosophy. And a very bad one.

For example: one of the first things that Socrates/Plato taught was to define and compare. You compare ancient philosophers with modern science. That is a big mistake. If you are speaking of ancient philosophers you have to compare them with ancient scientists. Where the latter were? Oh, sure. You won't find pure philosophers separated from pure scientists. They were activities that went together. So they were just as clever as each other. By the way, I don't know what a strange mania you have caught from the poor Protagoras, of whom only a couple of phrases are known. For example: "Man is the measure of all things: of things which are, that they are, and of things which are not, that they are not." I think it is suggestive.

If you want to compare contemporary science with philosophy you have to choose some contemporary philosophers. Do you know any? Wittgenstein, Carnap, Sartre, Rawls, Habermas, Foucault...? Someone else?
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Old 3rd September 2019, 08:00 AM   #79
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Originally Posted by ehhz View Post
Philosophy in particular has shed it's formerly scientific character and has been made a trade of fools. It went off-the-rails when individuals such as Socrates and Parmenides turned their back on the observation of the senses and Protagoras came to the forefront with his controversial arguments.
The idea of science as an inductive process based on empirical data was first formally documented by Aristotle, who came after those you mention.

Since that time there has been a demarcation between science (or Natural Philosophy as it was previously known as) and philosophy.

There would be no point in philosophy trying to double up on science.

There is certainly a lot of philosophy that I regard as being close to (if not actual) gibberish, but that doesn't mean that philosophy as a whole is a waste of time.

Quote:
The only clear-headed people today seem to be men of science.
There are clear headed people in most professions. There are cranks in most professions, including science.
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Old 3rd September 2019, 10:02 AM   #80
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Uh oh, someone said ‘philosophy’ in earshot of David Mo!

Mark me down for ‘easier to be optimistic while irreligious, actually’ because I don’t have to deal with The Problem of Evil, which would bug me a lot if I was most flavors of Christian. There’s religions out there that probably wouldn’t give me brain aches though.

Overall knowing that the terrible things of the world are just cause ‘things happen’ and not necessary for, or a part of, anybody’s plan, leaves me far more settled than the alternative.

And knowing that the wonderful things of the world are just cause ‘things happen’ makes me feel, ironically I suppose, very blessed.
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