Author Topic: Being nice to theists  (Read 5307 times)

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Offline Quesi

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #29 on: March 25, 2012, 07:40:20 AM »

What kinds of “bad experiences” do you have in mind?

I don't know because it's not my experience but I've heard some talk having had some kind of bad experience or other. What kinds of bad experiences have you encountered or heard about?

I don't think that I know of anyone who became an atheist due to "bad experiences."  But you cited it as your first example of why people become atheists.  I assumed that since you brought it up, you might be able to explain what you mean, or cite examples. 

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #30 on: March 25, 2012, 08:06:34 AM »
I don't think that I know of anyone who became an atheist due to "bad experiences."  But you cited it as your first example of why people become atheists.  I assumed that since you brought it up, you might be able to explain what you mean, or cite examples.
I suspect that the Catholic Church has provided enough scandal and vile abuse to cause many who were not entirely deceived by the godbothering bit to simply leave via that excuse but to come out as atheists as they never really believed anyway.
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Offline joebbowers

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #31 on: March 25, 2012, 08:10:11 AM »
Already tried. It didn't work.
BTW, what exactly do you expect us to do if not criticize his beliefs? Accept them? Debate requires criticism.

By criticism, I mean, by extension, criticism of character.

A lot of Christians define themselves by their religion. If that's the case, I have no problem criticising their character while criticising their religion.
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Offline HAL

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #32 on: March 25, 2012, 08:11:55 AM »
I personally like discussion that are win win, and the first thing that comes to mind when I think of win win situations is when two people learn something from each other, and I do believe that there is always something to learn from others no matter the differences.

Well it depends on the subject, now doesn't it? Try to organize a "win-win" conversation between a right to choose woman vs. an extreme right wing anti-abortionist woman. I wish you the best of luck.

Quote
I don't often see discussions between atheist and theist turn out well, and I do find it quite exasperating to witness the same scenarios playing themselves out repeatedly. Not only that, but the fact that very few seem to notice the trend or want to do anything about it. I believe that this rigidity in approach is counterproductive.

I suspect I have lots of conversations between myself and theists all the time on other forums that are "win-win" or "turn out well" as you call it, in fact I'm sure of it. The subjects of the forums are trucks, model railroads, cats, linux ...

Theists know lots of facts, tips, and helpful info I don't know, and vice versa, when it comes to all sorts of subjects. If they know what they are talking about, I use them to gain information. When it comes to rational thinking about the subject of this forum, they don't know how to apply critical thinking to the subject - many are delusional and have very flawed thinking patterns, compartmentalizing religion apart from what they can rationally think about on a vast array of other subjects, and take the most ridiculous stories from the Bible at face value. And I've said, a fair amount come in with guns-a-blazing even before we've pressed them for evidence.

I do not believe a god exists, and there is nothing in all the years I've talked with theists here that has done a whit to convince me otherwise. That's completely different from other subjects I talk about them with on other forums. Now, you know as well as I do what the difference is (I hope). There is no testable, verifiable evidence that they have for their claims. That being so, the conversations aren't "win-win". The conversations are more like "Oh crap, here comes that tired old argument for god again that I've refuted a hundred times before".

If you want "win-win" enforced, so to speak, then you might want to try out some other forums out there who have different rules to try and force "win-win" - some members have said IsGodImaginary is one that does, there may be others. We don't do it that way here because it puts an artificial cloak over things.
« Last Edit: March 25, 2012, 08:22:50 AM by HAL »

Offline kin hell

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #33 on: March 25, 2012, 08:43:41 AM »
kymer you are being either presumptuous or disingenuous.

The implication of your OP is that theists are met here on this forum,with (as a default setting) hostility (either subconscious, veiled, or overt).

Don't bother saying that isn't what you meant, because that is what you've implied, and I am answering the implication, not some alternate universe "What I meant to say....".

You have implied that everyone (atheists) acts the same (irregardless of the lovely "everyone is different" passages) in that invariably active aggression and hostility are the key drivers of most/ all atheists here when meeting theists onsite. Thus we are not being nice to theists, and thus you feel obliged to so generously tell us we should be nicer.

You have done nothing to address the fact that the theists are as equally "different" in intent, temperament, honesty, politeness, lucidity and morality as any disparate atheist gravity well (such as here), and as such those variegated theists warrant various responses.

What you have failed to show is why we should be nice to the theists who don't deserve that consideration. Because we are invariable nice to those who do warrant it.
(Actually that's not all you failed to show, but I will ignore the glaring lack of substantiation of your OP's implication.)
If you actually took the time to read some of the just slightly older threads that addressed this exact same idea (and there have been several recently) you'd find that the overwhelming consensus seems to be that no-one here wants to automatically burn any theist visitor (they are rare and to be nurtured), but at the same time few are willing to tolerate to silly lengths unacceptable behaviour.

Of course different people have different tolerances, but the obvious contenders of intolerable behaviour are spelled out in the rules anyway.

Personally I don't feel obliged to be nice to theists at all, if they present bad behaviour behind a xian facade, and it is very difficult for me to see the worth in mollycoddling some lying for god theist just to be "nice" to them if we differ.

Why should I put up with behaviour from people whom I don't know at all, who profess not only to be in touch with the primary morality authority in the whole of creation and who display all the honesty of a ghillie suit and integrity of a bank and social conscience of an ebola virus. I ask you, if I wouldn't put up with this behaviour from family and friends why should I put up with it from the defenders of the indefensible who profess irrationality to be a better guidance in life than rationality  ....I don't fucking think so.

And if a good theist visits (and they exist   ....do I dare say some of my best friends are theist idiots) then they too will get the reception from me (I am not speaking for anybody else) that they deserve.

So don't presume to judge what level of "attitude" is the default setting here until you make enough effort to do enough work to actually have some basis of data from which to make that call.

Otherwise you are guessing and generalising about the actual personality of the people here, without having any real information about them upon which to pass those judgements.

Re: ILY    I haven't engaged, so I cannot comment, but I will say, one example, is not a database.

« Last Edit: March 25, 2012, 08:51:16 AM by kin hell »
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all edits are for spelling or grammar unless specified otherwise

Offline ungod

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #34 on: March 25, 2012, 08:44:57 AM »
Wrong on all counts.
People come in all shapes and sizes, the fact that they may be atheist is irrelevant.
Atheist simply means to lack belief in a god or gods, nothing else.

Aaaaah - so rare - a voice of reason. Unfortunately, the theologue mind is immune to reason.
Reason is a whore, the greatest enemy that faith has.
Faith must trample under foot all reason, sense, and understanding. - Martin Luther

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #35 on: March 25, 2012, 08:46:09 AM »
kymer, still waiting for you to put up. Because you know what the alternative is, right?
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
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Offline monkeymind

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #36 on: March 25, 2012, 09:02:56 AM »
Funny, I much prefer the "not-niceness" of this forum over other forums where civility is demanded, but dodging, drive-bys, unsubstantiated statements are allowed and absurdities are encouraged.
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Offline Seppuku

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #37 on: March 25, 2012, 09:29:57 AM »
Generally I find people start losing their cool when people employ dodging tactics, who are dishonest, who shift goal posts, who preach, who make horribly inaccurate assumption (particularly about atheism and atheists), who defend the most immoral parts of their holy scripture, who support the most immoral parts of their holy scripture. I have Christian friends and they recognise that some parts of the bible are disgusting and use their head to suggest that these things are wrong, but it doesn't hurt their faith, they also stand by me in the respect that Christians shouldn't follow those teachings and that people should use their heads - in their eyes, it's what God would want them to do, I know Christians who love the idea of people questioning their faith and think it's healthy, they argue that anybody who doesn't question their faith can't really justify their beliefs.

The trouble is there are Christians out there who DO act on the immoral parts of the bible and often act in ways that hurt human rights, so I think for some people if a person starts defending the parts of the bible that encourage people to do those things they see it as a character flaw and one that ought to be corrected. Also the same goes for the handful of Muslims we get here, but the majority of theists we do get are Christians.

The approach here is to be straight and honest as possible, it may at times be harsh and even the way some people do it may come off as borderline offensive, but usually there's a point and it's not, "yay, lets bash theists", though when it comes to those who really just want to provoke people and insult them then in a good Christian fashion they take an eye for eye. ;)

Personally I try to stick away from losing my cool with theists, but it happens and it happens for numerous reasons. In fact, I'll just quote myself (I know, how narcissistic!) but it saves typing stuff out again (in the brackets I was jokingly using sarcasm; I am quoting a little out of context):

Quote from: ME!
Though on the internet I try to put it [sarcasm] aside because I know people can take it totally the wrong way. However, if I am sarcastic in a non-affectionate way then chances are you're driving my patience (wheew, somebody's cheerful today), not by merely thinking differently or having a difference of opinion it's by not listening (pardon?), it's by using strawmen, it's by lying, it's by being dishonest, it's by shifting goal posts, it's by condescending, it's by insults, it's by making offensive remarks, it's by getting shirty with me, it's by mistreating other people, it's by being a bigot, it's by over generalising people and making inaccurate assumptions, it's by prejudice. And even then I have a high tolerance, but I'm human so I do have a fuse.

And that doesn't just apply to theists. It has applied to atheists too, just as you can get a theist onto a topic outside of religion you can find they're the most reasonable and informed person on the planet it's also possible to get an atheist on here onto another topic and find they don't know what the hell they're talking about and use the same forbidden tactics we criticise theists for using. I can think of two atheists I got into more political discussion with ended up in ER and later banned. One of them was a conspiracy theorist and the other a libertarian. I don't know about other atheists people have engaged with, but those 2 stick out in my mind.


You should also note where we actually get along with theists. Although magicmiles has got a big chunk of negative karma, he's also got the positive karma to balance it. I know he and I have disagreed on topics but I like to think we're getting on respectfully. He wouldn't be the first theist on here either.
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Offline kymer

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #38 on: March 25, 2012, 09:35:58 AM »
I think you have the best approach, Seppuku. Keep it respectful and keep your cool. It's when people act disrespectfully that the problems start.

Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #39 on: March 25, 2012, 09:44:29 AM »
My question still hasn't been answered:

Although I've not really involved myself in the discussions, I notice for example that ILOVEYOU has gotten a lot of criticism (apparently criticism of character)

Where?
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Offline penfold

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #40 on: March 26, 2012, 04:41:31 AM »
Yeah these boards are pretty rough. So much so that I rarely come here any more (which is a shame, because there are times and people I have really enjoyed here). In my experience most theists are well meaning folk who put a high premium on virtues like honesty and kindness. The problem with this forum is that such behaviour is difficult to sustain; the tone here is, at the very minimum, aggressive, and it is hard to keep a level tone when called an idiot from the outset. There is nothing inherently wrong in this, but it does mean that the forum is largely a place for atheists to agree on certain things; the occasional theist is either bullied off the boards or ends up prozleytsing (which is understandably frustrating to atheist users).

In the real world I teach Religious Studies and Philosophy to teenagers. My pupils are a mostly secular bunch but there are more than a few theists. In the forum of a classroom we all seem to get along and have genuinely fruitful discussions. The difference to a place like this is striking. My guess is that the anonymity of the boards gives people a licence to engage in a robustness of debate they wouldn't adopt in the real world.

I think this is a shame for two reasons. Firstly there are many subtleties, and even beauty, in theistic thinking. From the rationalist panpsychism of Spinoza to the radical existentialism of Kierkegaard; even (dare I say) the ethics of Aquinas; there is much to be learnt by studying theistic philosophies. Moreover many of the great atheists (egs Hume, Russel, Sartre) have realised this. On these forums however such compatibleness is usually rejected on spec.

Secondly this place will never (or rarely) persuade anyone. In fact my guess is that most theists who come here leave feeling upset and angry; emotions that tend to fortify rather than undermine faith. I have been a member of WWGHA for a number of years now (though I come less and less) and I can't even remember a single 'conversion' of a theist (though this is a far cry from saying that there have been none - I just haven't noticed any). Moreover I have seen many theists arrive and quickly disappear after being harangued and insulted. [One interesting phenomena is how quickly theists become labelled "trolls"- anyone who doubts this watch carefully next time a theist comes by...]

Anyhow my own view is that this place will never change; it will always be a place where theists are pilloried rather than engaged with. I know many users will disagree and even find this post annoying. I apologise if anyone thinks I am being unfair, all I will say is that this is my honest opinion.

peace
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Offline HAL

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #41 on: March 26, 2012, 07:45:32 AM »
Anyhow my own view is that this place will never change; it will always be a place where theists are pilloried rather than engaged with. I know many users will disagree and even find this post annoying. I apologise if anyone thinks I am being unfair, all I will say is that this is my honest opinion.

Can you give us a hint as to how you would deal with a member such as ILOVEYOU, under your ideal forum guidelines. Here's an example of what this person posts -

Man fall was a huge one. Deceived into believing we could become like GOD. Didn't happen, not going to happen. We were already made in His image and likeness to begin with, but GOD is GOD. There is none other. His plan for Salvation was already set into motion from the beginning. It is through Jesus Christ this Salvation came by the grace of GOD because He loves us. He always has.

You can find more here -ILOVEYOU

You say -

Quote
Firstly there are many subtleties, and even beauty, in theistic thinking.

I'd like to know the method you would use. I want to make sure I understand what your technique would be, because I don't yet know.

Thanks.

Offline kymer

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #42 on: March 26, 2012, 08:48:26 AM »
Penfold...

Excellent post.

In my experience, theists are, as you say, well meaning folk who are determined to be honest and kind. And yes, I can imagine that is tested to the limit in an atheist forum, especially when they're treated like or called an idiot right from the start. The anonimity of the internet makes it all too easy to treat people nothing like one would treat them face to face, so it's not surprising there's such a contrast between discussions in your classes and discussions here and elsewhere, and this is made even worse by the fact that groupthink has a tendancy to take over. I liken it to someone walking up to a gang and asking to join in, and being snubbed for not sharing the gang's views, and the fact that it's mainly a male envirnment has more than just a little to do with it.

So I have no problem with theists who come here "preaching". Partly because I understand their enthusiasm, and partly because when they're treated as abysmally as they are, they probably think to themselves "fuck it, I'm just going to preach until I get banned, I might as well have a laugh as I have nothing to lose". Rather than throwing the book at "preachers", it's better to just engage with them in the spirit of win-win. Some say this is impossible, I wantt nothing to do with that line of thinking. Of course it's possible. The other problem is labelling / treating theists as trolls. That is such a bad idea. I hear all sorts of excuses for it, and excuses for mistreating theists, and I refuse to buy any of it. I refuse to buy into the idea that there is nothing one can learn from another person regardless of their views.

There is an undercurrent which rarely gets mentioned. It basically runs atheist forums. Forget the rules, it is the undercurrent which dominates. The undercurrent is that it's a club, with a gang mentality, where atheists come to vent, and woe betide any theist who dares enter, as the emotions will be turned onto them. It starts with "welcome to the forum...oh, tell us about your beliefs", and then quickly degenerates into a punching bag session. "Prove it!" "Troll!" "Put up or shut up!" and on and on it goes. The reason why very few get tired of it is because it is an emotional scenario that some people need to keep seeing get played out. It's like therapy to some. To those like Penfold and myself, it's quite obvious that this is extremely unhealthy, but to those who need it, it's like medicine. They'll justify it till the cows come home whilst always being oblivious to how damaging and counterproductive it is.

I don't care what anyone says, it is perfectly possible to have a discussion with someone of another view which is beneficial to both. If anyone who disagrees wonders how that can be done, I'm afraid that if you don't know, you don't know. Figure it out. As far as I can see, theists mostly come here willing to do their bit, but I rarely see it reciprocated. And to those theists who become a bit preachy, all you need to do is ask them politely to tone it down, and if they do, engage them.

Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #43 on: March 26, 2012, 08:55:21 AM »
especially when they're treated like or called an idiot right from the start.

Who? Where? Examples?

Quote
, with a gang mentality,

Who? Where? Examples?

Quote
and then quickly degenerates into a punching bag session. "Prove it!"

What is wrong with asking someone to prove their claim?

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"Put up or shut up!"

What is wrong with asking someone to be responsible for their claims?

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They'll justify it

Justify what?

Where have you pointed a finger, through citation, a single solitary example of what you accuse?

Quote
And to those theists who become a bit preachy, all you need to do is ask them politely to tone it down, and if they do, engage them.

Preaching is the absence of intellectual discussion and the lack of personal responsibility for ones claim's.  The only thing that does matter is whether or not someone can reasonably support what they assert.

Do you have a deeper insinuation other than a blank unsupported accusation?
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Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #44 on: March 26, 2012, 09:03:26 AM »
In my experience most theists are well meaning folk who put a high premium on virtues like honesty and kindness.

In my experience this is the complete opposite.

Quote
The problem with this forum is that such behaviour is difficult to sustain; the tone here is, at the very minimum, aggressive, and it is hard to keep a level tone when called an idiot from the outset.

Can you find an example? Who? Where?

Quote
the occasional theist is either bullied off the boards or ends up prozleytsing (which is understandably frustrating to atheist users).

Then they are bullied off the board for no more reason then being held accountable for their actions and claims, not because someone calls them an idiot.

Quote
I think this is a shame for two reasons. Firstly there are many subtleties, and even beauty, in theistic thinking. From the rationalist panpsychism of Spinoza to the radical existentialism of Kierkegaard; even (dare I say) the ethics of Aquinas; there is much to be learnt by studying theistic philosophies. Moreover many of the great atheists (egs Hume, Russel, Sartre) have realised this. On these forums however such compatibleness is usually rejected on spec.

This is nothing but dismissive incredulous attack on every person here based off totally imagined context that you can't even bothered to cite a reasonable example for.  You're whining, complaining in such a way as to censor the desire to hold people intellectually responsible for what they claim and the community that does so unapologetic-ally.

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Secondly this place will never (or rarely) persuade anyone.

It already has.

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In fact my guess is that most theists who come here leave feeling upset and angry;

Most theist arrive upset and angry, lie and make egregiously uneducated claims, and then run away when expected to be accountable.

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emotions that tend to fortify

The tendency for someone within an insular cult to use confirmation bias by mistreating others than pretending as if they are a martyr when mistreated in return is not really a relevant point.  If anything, you're still whining that believers are held accountable in a manner that is totally unapologetic.

What is wrong with being held accountable for your claims?

Why do any of us need to give blind deference to an imagined unjustified notion of 'respect' that only accomplishes to censor discussion?

Quote
Moreover I have seen many theists arrive and quickly disappear after being harangued and insulted. [One interesting phenomena is how quickly theists become labelled "trolls"- anyone who doubts this watch carefully next time a theist comes by...]

Can you give me a reasonable example of anyone here calling someone else an idiot from the onset or as I suspect.. a theist makes a series of unsupported assertions, lies, equivocates, and begans 'preaching'.. then is called an idiot and generally insulted for demonstrating a level of disrespect towards us.

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rather than engaged with.

How do you engage someone that systematically lies and dismisses you out of hand for not believing their supernatural claims at face value? ( Yes, this describes the majority of theist who visit here )

Why are you less concerned about theist lying to someone's face ( which is insulting ), dismissing someone out of hand for not believing a claim at face value ( which is insulting ), and repeated attempts to dehumanize people for not believing ( which is insulting )?

How is this not a giant appeal to moderation fallacy on your part, never adequately citing examples to support what you accuse of others and then blankly trying to appeal to an unjustified middle ground sandwiched between two specially pleaded qualifications?
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 09:15:05 AM by Omen »
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Offline Zankuu

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #45 on: March 26, 2012, 09:51:15 AM »
We've talked about the unwarranted vitriol towards new theists here before and it didn't really go anywhere. My feelings on the issue are similar to penfolds and it's the main reason my forum activity has died down in the past year.

In my experience, theists are, as you say, well meaning folk who are determined to be honest and kind.

If you're talking about your average theists out in the real world whose lives aren't completely revolving around god worship, yeah, I agree. But at this forum- not so much. I see more dodging, shifting of goal posts, and dishonesty from fly by theists far more than open and honest dialogue. I think the main problem is where this website is attracting most of its visitors: YouTube.[1] That place is an intellectual wasteland dominated and made barren by idiocy. How many sensible and rational theists do we get here? Members like OldChurchGuy are rare while ILOVEYOU types are the norm, which is a damn shame. And it's nearly the exact opposite at another forum I frequent.

And yes, I can imagine that is tested to the limit in an atheist forum, especially when they're treated like or called an idiot right from the start.

Unfortunately the shoe has fit more often than not.

I'm all for welcoming a new Christian to the board and keeping things respectful as long as long as he/she is polite. But we get a lot of guests that walk in our home and shit on the carpet, dumbfounded as to why the conversation has taken a shift to a volatile nature.

So I have no problem with theists who come here "preaching".

There's a difference between preaching and quoting scripture. If a member wants to quote the Bible to back up his or her claim- that's fine. But this forum isn't a soapbox for believers to rain down hellfire and brimstone on us. This is a place for debate and discussion. Preaching is the opposite of discourse, that's one reason it isn't welcomed here.

I don't care what anyone says, it is perfectly possible to have a discussion with someone of another view which is beneficial to both.

You aren't talking about how to have a discussion with someone that simply has another view. We do that quite well with rational human beings. You're talking about having a discussion with an irrational person that is closed off to the idea of entertaining another worldview, and you imply that you have the knowledge on how to approach this.

If anyone who disagrees wonders how that can be done, I'm afraid that if you don't know, you don't know. Figure it out.

And this shows that you don't have a fucking clue how. If you actually had the knowledge, you'd share it.

Edit: spelling.
 1. jetson, HAL, Gray- Correct me if I'm wrong here.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 09:55:42 AM by Zankuu »
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Offline kymer

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #46 on: March 26, 2012, 10:10:37 AM »
Zankuu...

Why have you chosen to focus on what I said, when actually what I'm saying is very similar to what Penfold was saying. In fact my whole post was an expression of how and why I agreed with him. You don't come here much, neither does Penfold, and I assume it's for the same reasons. People tend to treat others the same way that they get treated. If they're treated with contempt, especially from the outset, they usually tend to reciprocate. In other words you get what you give out. And we must be very careful and notice when we are treating someone with contempt. Out of all the theists that come here, I think probably most of them are sincere, and you have to remember that they are probably not used to being interrogated. So it's no wonder that when they're bombarded with questions and requests for evidence, it's a bit of a shock to them. That's why you have to be considerate and ease them into it, and keep it friendly. Otherwise, you get chaos. It doesn't matter how right you think you are, chaos is the result. If you attack or are considered to be attacking, you get attacked back. This is why such discussions tend to work out better in face to face situations, and why extra care must be taken on forums. You can't keep repeating the same old approach and then wonder why you don't get anywhere. I'm just being realistic. What happens here between theists and atheists would not happen in real life without violence erupting. Think about that. You have to be diplomatic if you want positive results. That's just the way it is, like it or not.

Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #47 on: March 26, 2012, 10:21:04 AM »
Out of all the theists that come here, I think probably most of them are sincere, and you have to remember that they are probably not used to being interrogated.

Beg to differ, most of the theist that come here are like ILY.  Arrogant, condescending, insulting, and dishonest.

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So it's no wonder that when they're bombarded with questions and requests for evidence, it's a bit of a shock to them.

Precisely because religious beliefs are not informed rationally and being accountable objectively is an anathema to them, they respond by resorting to the lowest common denominator by which they themselves had belief promoted to them; indoctrination, preaching, lying, etc.

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That's why you have to be considerate and ease them into it, and keep it friendly.

No where do we have to apologize for asking questions, no where do we have to be responsible for someone else being unwilling to answer those questions, and no where do we have to apologize for them not wanting to be accountable for what they claim.  In fact, their behavior and open antagonism to basic discourse is insulting in itself towards us.  You are not really arguing against any valid examples other than a vague and accusatory unsupported position that you make about others on the forum.

I demand that you provide examples of what you accuse others, immediately.

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If you attack

Who? Where? Examples? Citations? Anything?

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or are considered to be attacking

Why is anyone responsible for someone else so insecure as to imagine themselves being attacked?

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What happens here between theists and atheists would not happen in real life without violence erupting.

I have discussions like this all the time in real life.  If violence erupts, then someone is guilty of assault and should be arrested immediately.  There is absolutely no reason that any of this should be predicated upon violence.
"Religious faith is the antithesis to knowledge, it is the opposition to education, and it has to act in animosity against the free exchange of ideas.  Why? Because those things are what cause harm to a religions place in society most." - Me

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #48 on: March 26, 2012, 10:27:54 AM »
There's a difference between preaching and quoting scripture. If a member wants to quote the Bible to back up his or her claim- that's fine. But this forum isn't a soapbox for believers to rain down hellfire and brimstone on us. This is a place for debate and discussion. Preaching is the opposite of discourse, that's one reason it isn't welcomed here.

We totally agree with this.

We just made an update to the rules of the forum regarding preaching, since this problem has come up before. If a member is preaching it is now explicitly against the rules. Please initiate a Report to Moderator if you encounter preaching. Preaching is not quoting Bible verses for examination in a mutual discussion about their meaning, but quoting Bible verses or inculcated religious ideas without intent to discuss or examine in-depth, but as a proclamation in and of itself, is not allowed.

No Preaching - For the purposes of this forum, preaching is defined as the posting of religious proclamations/texts or inculcated religious doctrine without intent to engage members on its validity or support with evidence. The staff will determine if a member is engaging in preaching by using this definition as a baseline aided by the support of past experience.

Offline Zankuu

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #49 on: March 26, 2012, 10:30:09 AM »
Zankuu...

Why have you chosen to focus on what I said, when actually what I'm saying is very similar to what Penfold was saying. [...]

Because I disagree with you on a few points more than penfold, so you got my reply.

penfold is more than welcome to try and defend the position that "most theists *[that visit WWGHA] are well meaning folk who put a high premium on virtues like honesty and kindness", although I doubt that was what he was saying.

*my bold.
Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Offline kymer

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #50 on: March 26, 2012, 11:27:23 AM »
Zankuu, my point is simply that there is a place for diplomacy, and a situation where two people differ radically in their fundamental views on reality is one such place. It's an opportunity to learn about what drives others, what unites two people of different views, and to maintain good relationships. Do you not think these are worthy pursuits? I do. And this opportunity gets wasted time and time again. Instead of complaining about theists not being what you want them to be, how about being diplomatic. It opens doors, and it actually gets you somewhere. No one can guarantee that the other party will reciprocate, but often they do, and more importantly, it's worth maintaining one's dignity by playing your part in contributing to a sensible, diplomatic, and friendly discussion. I know that some here have no interest in that, and as long as their approach is the prevailing one, you will always find yourselves in the same scenarios, and you will always believe that it's all the theists' fault, and you will always carry on getting what you always get. I can't believe that some here have actually asked me to provide examples of a better way of doing things. I assume we're all adults here, I shouldn't have to give examples to adults who should know better. I have no interest in wasting my time explaining the basics of human conduct and diplomacy to a mentality that is incapable of grasping it. Or...is it because I can't? Yeah yeah, sure, it's because I cant, yeah whatever.

Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #51 on: March 26, 2012, 11:32:28 AM »
I shouldn't have to give examples to adults who should know better.

You do have to give examples of what you accuse others.  Notice that like before, you're being smited because you don't provide that which would support your own claims.

Why are you not willing to take responsibility for your own claims?

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I have no interest in wasting my time explaining the basics of human conduct and diplomacy to a mentality that is incapable of grasping it. Or...is it because I can't? Yeah yeah, sure, it's because I cant, yeah whatever.

It's because you don't wish to acknowledge that your initial premise that theist are sincere and honest is invalid, nor do you want to be accountable for your dismissive and hateful accusation through generalization of the members of this forum.  You are being an apologist for authoritarian values and protecting open censorship as a valid form of discourse.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 11:34:09 AM by Omen »
"Religious faith is the antithesis to knowledge, it is the opposition to education, and it has to act in animosity against the free exchange of ideas.  Why? Because those things are what cause harm to a religions place in society most." - Me

Offline Zankuu

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #52 on: March 26, 2012, 11:35:26 AM »
kymer, was there something in my reply you specifically didn't agree with? It looks like I'm just being talked at.
Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Offline kymer

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #53 on: March 26, 2012, 11:37:09 AM »
Sorry Zankuu, I meant to separate my post at some point. I'm just clarifying my point, not so much responding to you, although it did start out that way.

Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #54 on: March 26, 2012, 11:49:12 AM »
We totally agree with this.

We just made an update to the rules of the forum regarding preaching, since this problem has come up before. If a member is preaching it is now explicitly against the rules. Please initiate a Report to Moderator if you encounter preaching. Preaching is not quoting Bible verses for examination in a mutual discussion about their meaning, but quoting Bible verses or inculcated religious ideas without intent to discuss or examine in-depth, but as a proclamation in and of itself, is not allowed.

No Preaching - For the purposes of this forum, preaching is defined as the posting of religious proclamations/texts or inculcated religious doctrine without intent to engage members on its validity or support with evidence. The staff will determine if a member is engaging in preaching by using this definition as a baseline aided by the support of past experience.

How exactly is Kymer's behavior in this thread so far not an example of preaching.  He has accused through a proclamation, without intent to engage members on its validity or support with evidence, other members of this forum of behavior/actions.  When asked to provide  and support said accusatory remarks, he intentionally works to avoid engaging members of this forum on the validity or support of his claims with evidence.

How is this not an example of a mindless rhetorical platitude and not preaching save for the absence of a supernatural claim?
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 11:59:31 AM by Omen »
"Religious faith is the antithesis to knowledge, it is the opposition to education, and it has to act in animosity against the free exchange of ideas.  Why? Because those things are what cause harm to a religions place in society most." - Me

Offline kymer

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #55 on: March 26, 2012, 12:02:39 PM »
I think the clue is in the word "religious", omen. HAL made the definition of preaching in this forum quite clear, which you've quoted. I'm not preaching, in fact I'm not even saying anything about religion, I'm simply making a point that diplomacy is the right approach when dealing with people. I can't imagine a reasonable person disagreeing, yet you seem to disagree with that. So in answer to your question omen, my behaviour is not an example of preaching because it is utterly irrelevant to the definition of preaching, as given to you by HAL. You need to learn about what diplomacy is, and how it works. And perhaps exercise some in your dealings with others.

By the way I love the way you quoted the word "proclamation" in your post, as if somehow that adds weight to your argument that I'm preaching, yet you completely ignore the word "religious" in HAL's post. Which you quoted. Talk about twisting things, omen.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 12:05:54 PM by kymer »

Offline Omen

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #56 on: March 26, 2012, 12:11:11 PM »
I'm simply making a point that diplomacy

You're not adequately defining or providing examples of what diplomacy is supposed to be, your claim uses vague rhetoric appealing constantly to a middle ground you can't substantiate beyond pleading.  Earlier you made accusations of the community, unsupported by evidence, and then continued to contrast against that imagined accusatory basis with nothing more than your own incredulous rejection.

You're effectively not talking about anything at all.

And as you yourself take nasty digs at others daring to get you to be clear you offer this:

I assume we're all adults here, I shouldn't have to give examples to adults who should know better. I have no interest in wasting my time explaining the basics of human conduct and diplomacy to a mentality that is incapable of grasping it. Or...is it because I can't? Yeah yeah, sure, it's because I cant, yeah whatever.

This is nothing but a loaded insultingly dishonest attack on asking you to be accountable.  This is hateful, dishonest, and nothing more than an argument from personal incredulity.


 
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is the right approach

How is this the right approach?

Be more specific WHAT is the right approach?

Right approach to WHAT?

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I can't imagine a reasonable person disagreeing, yet you seem to disagree with that.

What am I disagreeing with?  Where have you offered any detailed explanatory condition, using examples from this forum, for a conversation you keep insisting 'must' take place but can't seem to describe even when asked?

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So in answer to your question omen, my behaviour is not an example of preaching because it is utterly irrelevant to the definition of preaching, as given to you by HAL.

Only by a semantic appeal that it does not include a supernatural claim.  Otherwise it is relevant to the portions of making claims without the intent to engage members on its validity or support with evidence.

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You need to learn about what diplomacy is, and how it works. And perhaps exercise some in your dealings with others.

And your intent to engage members on its validity or support is.. where exactly?

This is your claim, where is your argument?

Where is the support for your argument?

Where are the examples of real events on this forum that you accuse others?

Why do I have to ask in the first place?
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 12:36:50 PM by Omen »
"Religious faith is the antithesis to knowledge, it is the opposition to education, and it has to act in animosity against the free exchange of ideas.  Why? Because those things are what cause harm to a religions place in society most." - Me

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Re: Being nice to theists
« Reply #57 on: March 26, 2012, 12:13:21 PM »
kymer, from now on I will be giving you a -1 every time I can for not answering Omen's questions and not trying whatever method you think is best, rather than asserting its existence without further clarification. In other words, I will be giving you a -1 for not putting up or shutting up.
EDIT: If the mods think that this is unreasonable, they are free to tell me not to do so, and I will comply (obviously).
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