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Dec 24 13 2:00 AM

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Their is more than one kind of believer and disbeliever.

The "Conditional Believer" will believe as long as it is expedient to them. What is expedient varies from believer to believer. To some, logic may be a condition of belief, others may require compassion, love, rationality etc. These believers usually require some kind of justification for their belief. When the conditions are no longer met, they discover that they never were met or the justification for their belief is no longer there, they may become disbelievers or claim "agnosticism". Agnosticism, however, has absolutely nothing to do with belief and is often used as a transitory label by those who are not ready to declare disbelief. In a very real way, we are all agnostics.

The "Unconditional Believer" is one who requires no conditions to be met. Arguing that their belief is illogical, irrational discompassionate or cruel does not work with the unconditional believer because none of these things are important in determining whether the person believes or not. These believers require no justification for their belief.

The "Unreasoned Disbeliever" is one who has never believed has not come in contact with evangelical believers and so may not know about how believers "feel". Having not experienced belief or its affects on a person, they may be amused or even perplexed by those who believe, especially the more evangelical ones. The unreasoned disbeliever is the main target for evangelical organisations such as the Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses. Since the unreasoned disbeliever has no experience of believers or belief, they are unaware of the dangers and pitfalls that a simple belief can present. Unreasoned disbelievers are still in the default state that we are all born into. Religion is a learned behaviour, we are not born with it or into it.

The "Reasoned Disbeliever", on the other hand is one who has experienced belief either first hand or through believers they have known. The reasoned disbeliever has reasoned through experience and/or observation and concluded that they are now a disbeliever or, as some prefer to call themselves a "non-believer". Reasoned disbelievers have usually been involved in some kind of religion and are often well versed in the scriptures, liturgy and outreach systems that religious organisations employ. It is for the reasoned disbeliever that organised religion reserves its most vehement condemnation. Those who have "seen the way" and rejected it are also those who have seen that "the way" is a figment of the imagination and, as such, present the biggest threat to a religion, its belief system and its converts. They have reasoned that belief is not for them and, in many cases, have seen that belief is damaging to those it affects. Having experienced first hand the pitfalls and dangers, not only to the spirit (personality) but also to the mental health of people, they are considered by some religious organisations to be "of the devil" or "lost". To win a reasoned disbeliever over is, indeed a great prize for a religion but not one easily won.

Of course, those four labels are just that - labels. Human beings are as diverse as they are numerous. Everyone is different and those for labels can be broken down to the Nth degree and combined, intermixed and dissected, added to in millions of ways. There are, for instance, "Reasoned Believers" who have studied and observed their existence, concluding that they are a believer. They have seen that their is something worth believing in. "Conditioned Believers" and "Conditioned Disbelievers" are those who have been "raised" or conditioned in particular proclivity. The list of labels can grow to be unmanageable.

What kind of Atheist or believer are you?

I would put myself in the "Reasoned Disbeliever" category in that I have been involved in a number of different Christian sects and reasoned that I did not believe any of them and, in the end, that I didn't believe in the root which they all hold true - the bible and God.
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#1 [url]

Dec 24 13 5:31 AM

John Mirnet wrote:
Their [sic] is more than one kind of believer and disbeliever.
There is only one kind of atheist.  That is because all complete lacks of theism are equivalent.

Anyone can be creative in their expression on the written page, but all those who choose not to write will have completely equivalent blank pages.  It would be silly to remark "I really like the creative way you didn't write anything at all.  The absence of penmanship is absolutely divine."

Many people have difference automobiles.  Many people have no automobile whatsoever.  All of those people who have no automobile share the exact same lack of any automobile.  There is no variance in the kind of lack of automobile.  It would be silly to remark "I see that you have no car.  Great! Which model car do you not have, and what kind of engine does it not have under the lack of any hood?" 

If a person lacks theism then s/he is an a-theist.  Period.  If someone claims to not know what s/he believes, then obviously at that moment that person is not subscribing to any particular theism and is therefore an atheist. 

There is only one type of atheist. 

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#2 [url]

Dec 25 13 2:35 AM

Hello DaMan, thank you for pointing out my spelling error.

You seem to have missed the whole point of my post, nevertheless, to avoid any future false dichotomy distractions, please allow me to rephrase my question;
What kind of disbeliever or believer are you?

Now, to your other points;


John Mirnet wrote:
Their [sic] is more than one kind of believer and disbeliever.
There is only one kind of atheist.  That is because all complete lacks of theism are equivalent.

It's odd that you quote the main subject of my post but completely miss the point of it. I ask myself "why would someone quote a spelling error and draw attention to it by use of the phrase [sic] when there are much easier targets further down in the post?" Whatever, your argument doesn't hold up. Their may be only one kind of atheist, as you say, but that isn't what you are quoting, is it? Some pagans do not believe in a deity, neither do most Buddhist. They are both disbelievers. Just as we all journey on our own path, we decide for ourselves what defines us. Others can label and pigeon-hole us all they want, but our final definition is made by ourselves.
If someone claims to not know what s/he believes, then obviously at that moment that person is not subscribing to any particular theism and is therefore an atheist.

I'm surprised that someone as obviously meticulous as yourself would use such a non sequitur argument. It does not, by any stretch of the imagination, follow that because someone does not know what they believe that they believe in nothing and it is certainly not "obvious" that they are atheist.

[Edited to fix formatting]

Last Edited By: John Mirnet Dec 25 13 3:54 AM. Edited 1 time.

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#3 [url]

Dec 25 13 5:46 AM

A religion old or new, that stressed the magnificence of the universe as revealed by modern science, might be able to draw forth reserves of reverence and awe hardly tapped by the conventional faiths. Sooner or later, such a religion will emerge. -Carl Sagan

 


My religious, spiritual travels have been varied and interesting ultimately leading me to a belief in Naturalistic Pantheism. Very briefly it holds, that there is no God external to man, no ethereal figures floating seamlessly in the sky or under the earth. There is only the Universe and Mind (consciousness). I take my pantheism a bit further to suggest that there is evidence to support a collective consciousness or hive mind as it has been termed which is an amalgamation of its many parts or many minds.

Last Edited By: pan0ptic Dec 25 13 5:55 AM. Edited 1 time.

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#4 [url]

Dec 25 13 1:45 PM

I consider myself a Rational Spiritualist, meaning I believe that phenomena such as the existence of the soul as an "astral body", reincarnation, and certain psychic powers are part of the natural universe. This means that I can believe in life after death and channeled communication with the spirit world and also claim that I don't believe in the supernatural. I do consider myself a complete atheist, because I don't believe there are any superhuman intelligences in the universe. So I don't think I fit into any of the categories defined in the OP, but I'd be hard pressed to find a general category of belief that I do fit into...

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#5 [url]

Dec 25 13 7:01 PM

There are only two kinds of people believers and unbelievers. But they really do not know what they are until they hear me talk. Some believe me and some do not. These are the two lots. From before we became mortal beings we had to draw lots and these were the two lots. Believer and unbeliever then you put your lot in your back pocket not knowing what lot you drew. Then when you are a sentient human being you completely forget about that lot. To make an analogy let us imagine we are going to play cowboy and Indians. If it were up to us we would all decide to be the same thing so to be fair you draw lots. However here on earth you can disguise yourself as one or the other depending on your circumstances. I you are born in an indian village you will act as if you were an indian even if you really were a cowboy.So basically this believer and unbeliever is about believing what? It is about believing truth but if you have never been exposed to truth you cannot believe lies so you have to fake like you believe lies but in fact being a believer in truth you are in fact an unbeliever. This is where I step in. I just speak and instantly divide the lots. Why is this of any consequence? just for identification purposes. I have an inheritance to deliver to those who are believers and that inheritance is truth. Only the believer can receive this inheritance for two reasons. The unbeliever hates truth and has an allergic reaction to it . The believer loves truth and instantly loves it but hates lies. So when I speak the lots are separated.

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#6 [url]

Dec 25 13 11:00 PM

I embraced atheism for a short period of about a year. I would say God is dead we are all absolutely free, and, do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law. One of my biggest fears was that religion was just using the concept of 'God' to control us. I coined (or so I thought) the phrase 'There is no god but man'. After some time passed I realized that I did believe in God after all and was just angry at him. I started trusting him again. This was a long time ago and I have gone through much transformation since.

Last Edited By: Philip Whaley Dec 25 13 11:14 PM. Edited 1 time.

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#7 [url]

Dec 25 13 11:50 PM

All humans are a manifestation of God. Some pivotal like Adam, Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Elijah. 

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#8 [url]

Dec 26 13 11:41 AM

Hay John, you know me and my silly little Ideals. Thought I would pop by and see what is up.

For the rest of you folks - in a nutshell - I have a belief that there is a 'divine spirit' within the universe that 'runs the show' sort of like a 'scientist watching over a petri dish, as a very poor analogy. The main idea is that we rejoin the fold after the physical death, but the emanations and perturbations that we have caused become part of the whole. Thus we are not 'separate' from the universe.

On the one hand I feel that it would be totally natural and just plain irony for there to be a god, just because it would be the perverseness of Nature. However, any "true gods" would not be anything we as a human could relate to, understand or deal with (hence the 'scientist and the petri dish' analogy). Thus while there may be a God,the 'God' in question would be so far outside of anything humans in their conscience could understand, let alone 'know his/her will', it is irrelevant to us in our daily lives. We are pretty much on our own, because GOD is just trying to create a companion (or perhaps a whole race of gods) but we have a long, long, long way to go. First we must become truly civilized.

Sorry if this is bit 'short and jumbled'. Ask John, I do have the habit of 'speaking' off the cuff.



Molly say:
So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was.

       

Click HERE for Woody's
Come for the Discourse, stay for the Discord.

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#9 [url]

Dec 26 13 3:27 PM

Padre Mellyrn wrote:

 

image        
Come for the Discourse, stay for the Discord.
 

You've got to be kidding, why would anyone join a forum with the last entry being Dec. 8th  and the others being long before that?  It's a dead forum, no thanks.  

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#10 [url]

Dec 26 13 4:48 PM

You've got to be kidding, why would anyone join a forum with the last entry being Dec. 8th and the others being long before that? It's a dead forum, no thanks.

So?! Then don't go. Not really going to miss you there, now are we?

Molly say:
So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was.

       

Click HERE for Woody's
Come for the Discourse, stay for the Discord.

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#12 [url]

Dec 27 13 10:08 AM

bardoXV wrote:
Padre Mellyrn wrote:
So?! Then don't go. Not really going to miss you there, now are we?
 You're not going to miss anyone there, are you?  
So far nope! Anyone of significance that used to be there, I have their email addy's. and some other links. This forum started back in the early 90's and slowly the older folks just kind of left. I keep it open only because some folks, from time to time have wandered back. Otherwise I don't even bother to go there nowadays. Maybe the homeless can have a treat.

Molly say:
So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was.

       

Click HERE for Woody's
Come for the Discourse, stay for the Discord.

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#13 [url]

Dec 27 13 7:13 PM

I firmly believe that I do not understand everything.
I firmly believe there are far too many people making far too many problems using the name of God and their 'religion' as an excuse to perpetrate behavior which is neither okay nor will be okay any day of any week of any year!

WHICH...makes me the kind of 'person' who keeps a firm grasp of reality and what is right/wrong. good/bad. sane/insane. etc/etc

Which, has made my opinions almost impossible to clearly explain in a few short sentences or even more in a post bubble box.

Which, i hope that you can understand where i stand ...in life/god/religion/death

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