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moakley
SFN Regular

USA
1888 Posts

Posted - 05/23/2006 :  20:26:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send moakley a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

moakley wrote:
quote:
Curious? What is the set of basic principle that an atheist fundamentalist adheres to? I would suspect that for most it would be based on the diligence of the scientific methods.

Harris talks about ethics far more than he talks about science, and alas, while reason can be applied to ethics, it cannot be applied with even close to the amount of certainty as saying 1+1=2.

This was not a comment concerning the book, but a request for information considering that fundamentalism is a movement or attitude stressing strict and literal adherence to a set of basic principles.
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

quote:
Does the book in question take a rather extreme stance on the dangers of faith?

Considering that many atheists, such as myself, are upset about this book, yes, I would say that his position is extreme. Certainly by mainstream public standards it is extreme. This is not to say that I don?t agree with some of his specific criticisms of religion in general and all of his criticism of religious extremists.

Actually, we agreed here when you consider that my answer was, "More so than I am comfortable with."
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

quote:
Does the book support its claim for faith being dangerous? With many examples past and present. Has faith been used as justification for heinous acts against others? Too many times.

Being used as a justification doesn?t mean religious beliefs are the cause. Other things have been used as justification for heinous acts too often in history. Race and nationalism are right up there with religion, and neither of them require any religious-type of faith. They only require strong feelings and irrational beliefs, and everyone, including atheists, is susceptible to those. This as a blanket criticism of religion in general is just rather pointless.

It appears that here you are agreeing with me. No matter what the basis for an irrational belief, if it is part of the motivation for heinous acts against others it is simply wrong.
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

It can?t be denied that many humanitarian acts have been inspired also by religion.

The book does not deny this.
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

quote:
One of the harmful actions impacts the future by teaching children how to believe and not how to think. In line with the original post.

That statement is so vague that it is practically meaningless. It sounds more like empty rhetoric than a practical call for better social policies.

Why not ask for clarification.

In a nut shell:
- Does the book present a realistic or viable solution to the dangers of extreme positions based on faith in some god inspired book? Hell no.
- Does it effectively point out the dangers of these extreme positions? In my opinion, Yes.
- Is it possible to take an extreme position in order to sell more books? Hell, I don't know. Lets ask Ann Coulter.

edited: might be ???

Life is good

Philosophy is questions that may never be answered. Religion is answers that may never be questioned. -Anonymous
Edited by - moakley on 05/23/2006 20:28:29
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 05/24/2006 :  08:27:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
quote:
(me)It can?t be denied that many humanitarian acts have been inspired also by religion.

(moakley)The book does not deny this.


I think Harris's book does deny that many humanitarian acts have been inspired by religion and he does this by assuming that morals and ethics are a purely logical rather than at all intuitive and emotional matter. He admits that many humanitarian acts have been done by religious people or in the name of religion, but he credits an underlining secular humanist impulse for all good ethical actions and ideas of religious moderates. And he belittles the moderate's objection to fundamentalism. To quote him:
quote:
All we can say, as religious moderates, is that we don't like the personal and social costs that a full embrace of scripture imposes on us. This is not a new form of faith, or even a new species of scriptural exegesis; it is simply a capitulation to a variety of all-too-human interests that have nothing, in principle, to do with God. Religious moderation is the product of secular knowledge and scriptural ignorance--and it has no bona fides, in religious terms, to put it on a par with fundamentalism.


quote:
(me)That statement is so vague that it is practically meaningless. It sounds more like empty rhetoric than a practical call for better social policies.

(moakley)Why not ask for clarification.
Sorry if I had a bit of a jerk-like tone there. You are right, I should have just asked for clarification. I just get sick of those kind of broad statements so I've become oversensitive to them.

I very much agree with your assessment here:
quote:
In a nut shell:
- Does the book present a realistic or viable solution to the dangers of extreme positions based on faith in some god inspired book? Hell no.
- Does it effectively point out the dangers of these extreme positions? In my opinion, Yes.
- Is it possible to take an extreme position in order to sell more books? Hell, I don't know. Lets ask Ann Coulter.
We seem to agree on almost everything. How dull. ;-)

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

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Ghost_Skeptic
SFN Regular

Canada
510 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2006 :  00:01:07   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Ghost_Skeptic a Private Message
In a last desparate attempt to drag this back on topic here is an article from CBC Montreal along with an interview with a teacher and an interview with an anthropologist. Interviews are in Real Audio format.

quote:
Teachers in some northern Quebec communities say they are being told not to talk about the theory of human evolution because it offends some Inuit people.

Alexandre April, a teacher in Salluit, Que., said his school principal had told teachers not to discuss the issue.However, when students asked questions, April said Thursday he answered them as a teacher and biologist, telling them about Darwin's theory.

April said that's when he got the complaint.

"A mother called, and she said that I'd told her daughter that she was a monkey. It's not the way I presented it. Not at all. So I've been told not to do it again," April said.

April said he believes his students in the tiny Inuit community on Hudson Strait have the right to learn about evolution, just like all other Canadian students.

"We are able to talk about evolution of animals, but nothing about the origin of man," April said, adding the school threatened him with disciplinary action.

'They don't want to hear this kind of stuff'

The Kativik school board says it's just being sensitive to local beliefs.

Quebec's minister of education has weighed in on the subject saying that the curriculum should be taught and children have a right to learn the provincial curriculum. Hwever, he waffled on human evolution, saying something about the need to be sensitive to Inuit beliefs.

"You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. / You can send a kid to college but you can't make him think." - B.B. King

History is made by stupid people - The Arrogant Worms

"The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism." - William Osler

"Religion is the natural home of the psychopath" - Pat Condell

"The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter" - Thomas Jefferson
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2006 :  00:02:41   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
quote:
Hwever, he waffled on human evolution, saying something about the need to be sensitive to Inuit beliefs.
Oh yeah, now we can fight that type of Creationism too.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

Edited by - marfknox on 05/25/2006 00:02:58
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Ghost_Skeptic
SFN Regular

Canada
510 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2006 :  06:04:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Ghost_Skeptic a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox
[brOh yeah, now we can fight that type of Creationism too.



It seems that this being driven by Pentascotals - one of the audio links I provided includes an explanationof why this religion is so popular among the Inuit. Christian fundamentalism is behind this with the Inuit card being played to make it "Politically Correct".
This way they can claim the Quebec Ministry of Education is being racist by enforcing the provincial curriculum.

"You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. / You can send a kid to college but you can't make him think." - B.B. King

History is made by stupid people - The Arrogant Worms

"The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism." - William Osler

"Religion is the natural home of the psychopath" - Pat Condell

"The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter" - Thomas Jefferson
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2006 :  09:27:02   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
Ghost Skeptic wrote:
quote:
It seems that this being driven by Pentascotals - one of the audio links I provided includes an explanationof why this religion is so popular among the Inuit. Christian fundamentalism is behind this with the Inuit card being played to make it "Politically Correct".
This way they can claim the Quebec Ministry of Education is being racist by enforcing the provincial curriculum.
The fact that the "Politically Correct" card can even be played to woo the liberal side is still rather frightening considering the amount of double-think required to think that scientifically revealed realities about the natural world might be racist.

What I don't get is why evolution can't be integrated into the fundamentalist religions just like the fact that the world is round was. Don't they realize that they've already made concessions to science that contradicted with their scripture before? At this point I think the rejection of evolution is mostly running on momentum. People just assume that the whole idea of human evolution is this big and horrible thing that proves atheism right, to the point where they don't even stop and think about how a lot of questions are still left unanswered for them to stick their God into.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

Edited by - marfknox on 05/25/2006 09:28:32
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2006 :  12:35:28   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message
Ghost_Skeptic wrote:
quote:
It seems that this being driven by Pentascotals - one of the audio links I provided includes an explanationof why this religion is so popular among the Inuit. Christian fundamentalism is behind this with the Inuit card being played to make it "Politically Correct".
This way they can claim the Quebec Ministry of Education is being racist by enforcing the provincial curriculum.
I think you have your targeting system locked onto the proper bogey.

Indeed, that idea makes much sense. The Pentecostals get to use this false racism charge in order to drive the provincial government's educational influence out of the Inuit villages, giving the Pentecostals a clear field to do their indoctrination without any possible interference. I'm sure there are many valid racism charges that could be laid that could have been made at the doorstep of the provincial government, but every false charge of racism is a racist act, in that it distracts from the real thing -- such as the Pentecostal's own wholesale destruction of the Inuit traditional way of thinking. (I believe this may even rise to the level of "cultural genocide.")

quote:
Article 7 of the "United Nations draft declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples" (26 August 1994) defines "Cultural genocide" ... :

Indigenous peoples have the collective and individual right not to be subjected to ethnocide and cultural genocide, including prevention of and redress for:

(a) Any action which has the aim or effect of depriving them of their integrity as distinct peoples, or of their cultural values or ethnic identities;
(b) Any action which has the aim or effect of dispossessing them of their lands, territories or resources;
(c) Any form of population transfer which has the aim or effect of violating or undermining any of their rights;
(d) Any form of assimilation or integration by other cultures or ways of life imposed on them by legislative, administrative or other measures;
(e) Any form of propaganda directed against them.



[From Wikipedia, with my emphasis.]

I do not believe for a second that an arctic native people had a traditional abhorrence of monkeys and apes. The Pentecostals cynically are using some of their Inuit converts not to defend any Inuit creation myth, but to reinforce their own. Indeed, a little reading on the Web has opened my eyes to the fact that the Pentecostals are particularly heavy handed ideologically in dealing with the Inuit, not only pushing for Biblical literalism in schools, but for anti-gay legislation, etc.

The Pentecostals are playing the "cultural genocide" card as a diversion to protect their own cultural genocide.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
Edited by - HalfMooner on 05/25/2006 13:06:43
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Ghost_Skeptic
SFN Regular

Canada
510 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2006 :  23:48:15   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Ghost_Skeptic a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by HalfMooner

I do not believe for a second that an arctic native people had a traditional abhorrence of monkeys and apes. The Pentecostals cynically are using some of their Inuit converts not to defend any Inuit creation myth, but to reinforce their own. Indeed, a little reading on the Web has opened my eyes to the fact that the Pentecostals are particularly heavy handed ideologically in dealing with the Inuit, not only pushing for Biblical literalism in schools, but for anti-gay legislation, etc.

It now looks like the provincial Education Minister is going to wuss out on this one.

They are continuing with their cultural on this one
quote:
But spokeswoman Debbie Astroff says the beliefs and culture of the local Inuit need to be respected in the classroom.

"The teacher's rationale was that Nunavik students should have the same right to the same education as other students. And we agree, but the Inuit of Nunavik should also have the right to have their views and way of life respected by our teachers," she said.

Since when was the mythology of a bunch of middle eastern nomads a part of Inuit traditional culture?

I wonder if Dr. Mab has any insight on the Pentacostal aspect of this.


"You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. / You can send a kid to college but you can't make him think." - B.B. King

History is made by stupid people - The Arrogant Worms

"The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism." - William Osler

"Religion is the natural home of the psychopath" - Pat Condell

"The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter" - Thomas Jefferson
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9680 Posts

Posted - 05/26/2006 :  13:30:08   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Ghost_Skeptic

I wonder if Dr. Mab has any insight on the Pentacostal aspect of this.

I'm afraid I dont.
First, it's been more than 10 years since I broke free from their mind-numbing grasp. Secondly, modern Swedish Pentacostals are less political and more liberal than any American counterparts.

What I'm reading in this thread is disturbing, but not surprising in the light of the intellectual dishonesty I've learned to expect from fundamentalistic Christians.
I was exposed to some of it in church, but I believe it mostly those stemmed from prejudice toward the "unsaved" world rather than acutal and planned malice.
Never the less, the attitude is dangerous.

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 05/26/2006 :  13:41:15   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message
Dr. Mabuse stated:
quote:
First, it's been more than 10 years since I broke free from their mind-numbing grasp. Secondly, modern Swedish Pentacostals are less political and more liberal than any American counterparts.

Technically speaking, Canada is not part of the country of America, something we here in the States are reminded of every time the Canadians send one of our tax collectors back across the border dressed in tar and feathers. We tried to take Canada during the War of 1812, but despite sending superior forces there, our invasions were repulsed five times with heavy losses. So now, we yanks prefer to think of Canada as a cluster of snowbound territories that just didn't measure up for admittance into the USA.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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