Author Topic: Delusional  (Read 16418 times)

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Offline bertatberts

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #319 on: August 31, 2012, 09:39:47 AM »
Why would you be trouble by showing your true colours to a theist. I don't get it.
If it were life threatening I could understand, but it is a public forum where your are anonymous. 
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #320 on: August 31, 2012, 10:28:23 AM »
Gnu:  If the thread is moved into the Atheist Corner, I can no longer participate in it.

I don't consider myself an atheist, in either sense that the term is used.  The term I'd use for myself is an "apatheist", a word I coined a while back by joining apathy + theist.  I am apathetic about an individual's personal beliefs, or those of a private voluntary organization that only applies those beliefs within itself; my concern is the public ramifications of belief systems which intend to apply their beliefs to others, whether through force, through law, or through coercion.

Perhaps it was a little unfair to try to get Nam to answer a question like that.  But it isn't just that he didn't answer it.  It's that he kept trying to weasel out of answering it.  He could have answered like you did.  He could have rephrased the question and answered his rephrase.  Instead, he called it silly, and when pressed, he rephrased it and then answered with a question.

By the way, my question was about whether the beliefs were delusional, not about whether the individuals who followed them were.  That may seem like a meaningless distinction, but in my view it isn't.  I think a shared belief, such as a religious one, can be considered delusional, but a person who follows or followed it might not truly be delusional.  If they've been led to believe such a thing all their lives, and never had anything seriously presented to contradict it, they could be perfectly rational people, and not delusional at all in the general sense of the term.
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Offline Gnu Ordure

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #321 on: August 31, 2012, 10:41:16 AM »
Gnu:  If the thread is moved into the Atheist Corner, I can no longer participate in it.
Ah, OK; bad idea then, sorry.

Offline TheDaemonsNest

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #322 on: September 07, 2012, 11:50:16 PM »

Of course, and I agree for the most part. However, religion plays by a different set of rules then science. When religious people make a statement like "The world was created by God's magic power in 6 days", how do you propose they prove this? Not a single person on earth is able to investigate the nature of this "God", so naturally they would not be able to offer any proof. On top of that, what constitutes proof for them would not be the same thing that constitutes proof for you. An experience they had or a personal testimony could constitute "proof" in their opinion, while you might require something physical. And as I already said, what physical proof can they offer for a metaphysical concept? For that matter, what proof can there be for any metaphysical concept? I guess that's the whole point of my argument here, how can you call someone delusional when there's no proof for or against what they are saying? You don't have to take what they're saying seriously. much less believe in it, but to call them deluded for it might not be appropriate. Stubborn, most definitely. But, the definition of delusion requires proof, not the lack thereof.

Minor issue.  God is not always metaphysical.  He has appeared on earth, and he has directly interacted with certain people.  Through Jesus, he has directly manifested his "miracles" in various ways. 

As others have stated, we have no reason to hold even the possibility of a god being real, without some type of evidence, any more than we would hold aliens abducting humans and extracting their eggs without evidence.  And, as has been said many times in the past, what reason does anyone even have in positing a god to begin with?

Very interesting point. I agree, according to many religions God has indeed been made physical a few times. However, nowadays God seems to be conspicuously absent. So what reason do we have to believe there is a God today? None, as far as science can determine. However, one important thing to remember about religion is that it is unfalsifiable. Granted, this is not to be viewed as a positive quality, but it is a quality of religion nonetheless. Like that piece of crap movie "Contact", where the search for extraterrestrial intelligence yields some results. The main character strongly resists the idea of a God for lack of scientific evidence, yet when she has an experience that cannot be explained she learns to have faith (not in God, but in extraterrestrial contact). Many people believe they have had a genuine spiritual experience, and although we may not agree that they have had these experiences, who are we to call them delusional for it? For arguments sake, if Jesus or some other religious figure were to come flying in from space right now, we wouldn't have much choice in admitting that we were wrong. I think it is important to remember that our current scientific paradigm is subject to change just as quickly as those before, and new evidence could arrive at any moment. So I, for one, would be careful when using a word like "Delusional", lest I find myself eating my words one day. I hope this is all coherent, as I am tired right now, but I think my point was made. However, I agree with much of what you said.

Offline Lectus

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #323 on: September 08, 2012, 06:21:17 AM »
Could the definition not also be expanded to include beliefs held without any supporting evidence? Maybe not, but if so I think this would cover the "Medieval peasant" issue above.

In any case I will say that when I first came to this forum as a YEC Christian (many years ago under a different name) that I was called delusional by several members.

Did I find it insulting? Yes.
Did I "dig my heels in"? Yes.
Did it encourage me to research ways to refute those heathen atheists? Yes.
Did this search to prove that I was not delusional eventually lead to my de-conversion? Absolutely.

There were many factors involved in my personal journey away from insanity, but I have to give partial credit to those who were not afraid to rightly humiliate me for my unjustified beliefs. To all of you bastards with balls of steel: I thank you.  ;D

Reading this gives me hope.

Some religious people just seem impossible to deal with.
Religion: The belief that an all powerful God or gods created the entire universe so that we tiny humans can be happy. And we also make war about it.

Online jetson

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #324 on: September 08, 2012, 07:44:32 AM »

Very interesting point. I agree, according to many religions God has indeed been made physical a few times. However, nowadays God seems to be conspicuously absent. So what reason do we have to believe there is a God today? None, as far as science can determine. However, one important thing to remember about religion is that it is unfalsifiable. Granted, this is not to be viewed as a positive quality, but it is a quality of religion nonetheless. Like that piece of crap movie "Contact", where the search for extraterrestrial intelligence yields some results. The main character strongly resists the idea of a God for lack of scientific evidence, yet when she has an experience that cannot be explained she learns to have faith (not in God, but in extraterrestrial contact). Many people believe they have had a genuine spiritual experience, and although we may not agree that they have had these experiences, who are we to call them delusional for it? For arguments sake, if Jesus or some other religious figure were to come flying in from space right now, we wouldn't have much choice in admitting that we were wrong. I think it is important to remember that our current scientific paradigm is subject to change just as quickly as those before, and new evidence could arrive at any moment. So I, for one, would be careful when using a word like "Delusional", lest I find myself eating my words one day. I hope this is all coherent, as I am tired right now, but I think my point was made. However, I agree with much of what you said.

I have said in the past, and I still think it is valid, that a deist position is the most tenable (least delusional).  In other words, I find it more difficult to refute the idea that there could be a creator, than I do to refute YHWH, Zeus, Thor, etc.  When humans place attributes on their gods, and begin to make claims that these gods have done things such as command the wholesale slaughter of cities, impregnate virgins, and drag the son of God back to heaven for thousands of years before sending him back to kill the sinners, I have to call them delusional at this point in time.  In the past, I would call a lot of them ignorant (and I may have been among them had I lived in a time when we did not know how lightning happens).

So I see a distinction between ignorance (not a bad thing at all), and delusion.  The delusion label is fairly accurate when people insist that they have actually figured out who their god is, what it wants, and who is in the club.  When they begin to claim that their personal interpretations require the marginalization of other people, and the restriction of human rights based on their SPAGged (self projection as God) moral system, I have to call them delusional.  It's no longer ignorance, IMO.

So while I cannot refute spiritual experiences, and I certainly cannot prove they are "delusional" experiences, the more these experiences reach out and touch everyone else, the more delusional I feel they are.  I think this world would be vastly more peaceful and different if people enjoyed their personal experiences, and let others do the same.  After all, when medically deluded people with real psychiatric problems begin to affect (or harm) others, we tend to heavily medicate them, or even lock them up to be looked after.

Offline TheDaemonsNest

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #325 on: September 08, 2012, 12:52:30 PM »

Very interesting point. I agree, according to many religions God has indeed been made physical a few times. However, nowadays God seems to be conspicuously absent. So what reason do we have to believe there is a God today? None, as far as science can determine. However, one important thing to remember about religion is that it is unfalsifiable. Granted, this is not to be viewed as a positive quality, but it is a quality of religion nonetheless. Like that piece of crap movie "Contact", where the search for extraterrestrial intelligence yields some results. The main character strongly resists the idea of a God for lack of scientific evidence, yet when she has an experience that cannot be explained she learns to have faith (not in God, but in extraterrestrial contact). Many people believe they have had a genuine spiritual experience, and although we may not agree that they have had these experiences, who are we to call them delusional for it? For arguments sake, if Jesus or some other religious figure were to come flying in from space right now, we wouldn't have much choice in admitting that we were wrong. I think it is important to remember that our current scientific paradigm is subject to change just as quickly as those before, and new evidence could arrive at any moment. So I, for one, would be careful when using a word like "Delusional", lest I find myself eating my words one day. I hope this is all coherent, as I am tired right now, but I think my point was made. However, I agree with much of what you said.

I have said in the past, and I still think it is valid, that a deist position is the most tenable (least delusional).  In other words, I find it more difficult to refute the idea that there could be a creator, than I do to refute YHWH, Zeus, Thor, etc.  When humans place attributes on their gods, and begin to make claims that these gods have done things such as command the wholesale slaughter of cities, impregnate virgins, and drag the son of God back to heaven for thousands of years before sending him back to kill the sinners, I have to call them delusional at this point in time.  In the past, I would call a lot of them ignorant (and I may have been among them had I lived in a time when we did not know how lightning happens).

So I see a distinction between ignorance (not a bad thing at all), and delusion.  The delusion label is fairly accurate when people insist that they have actually figured out who their god is, what it wants, and who is in the club.  When they begin to claim that their personal interpretations require the marginalization of other people, and the restriction of human rights based on their SPAGged (self projection as God) moral system, I have to call them delusional.  It's no longer ignorance, IMO.

So while I cannot refute spiritual experiences, and I certainly cannot prove they are "delusional" experiences, the more these experiences reach out and touch everyone else, the more delusional I feel they are.  I think this world would be vastly more peaceful and different if people enjoyed their personal experiences, and let others do the same.  After all, when medically deluded people with real psychiatric problems begin to affect (or harm) others, we tend to heavily medicate them, or even lock them up to be looked after.

Ah, I see what your saying. I agree, people should be very careful when making a claim like knowing the identity and desires of the most powerful being in the universe. I think this is why it is important to maintain an open minded worldview. The instant you start saying "My way is the only right way" you put yourself in an awkward position. If religious people would acknowledge that there is no physical "proof" for their idea of God, and remember to treat it as a belief, I think the world would be a better off place. I believe they have a right to believe what they want, but they can't expect everyone to fall in line with it. To do so mindlessly does indeed prove them delusional. In other words, it is important to remember your beliefs about "God" are not necessarily the truth about "God", and when discussing God with people it should be treated as a belief.

Offline Nam

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #326 on: October 17, 2012, 08:30:46 PM »
Dude, I've been going over all the topics I've posted since 2009, and I just saw that in February 2011 I posted this topic. Exact topic. It's not as succinct, and only went on for 3 pages but damn...I just find that weird. I didn't even know I had this same contempt even a year ago. Guess I did.

In case you want to know, it's called: Delusional Much?

I just found that funny, and thought I would share.

-Nam
"presumptions are the bitch of all assumptions" -- me

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Offline bertatberts

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #328 on: August 29, 2013, 02:08:06 PM »
Looks like "A Manual for Creating Atheists"could be a good read.
We theists have no evidence for our beliefs. So no amount of rational evidence will dissuade us from those beliefs. - JCisall

It would be pretty piss poor brainwashing, if the victims knew they were brainwashed, wouldn't it? - Screwtape. 04/12/12

Offline Nam

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Re: Delusional
« Reply #329 on: August 29, 2013, 03:59:47 PM »
I never really stated I didn't think they weren't delusional; my whole point was: what value is there in calling them it so nonchalantly?

My analogy of calling people idiots--whereas I did it nonchalantly in the beginning, I do it rarely now. I still believe everyone's an idiot (including me) I just find it has more effect when done sparingly--did't go over so well, I guess.

I read a beautifully written comment written at imdb.com recently but near the end the guy added religion and politics into the comment (that had nothing at all to do with what the discussion was on) and ruined what he wrote.

Who cares if you have differing views than other people, why go into a tangent about something that has nothing at all to do with the conversation at hand just to enter something irrelevant into the mix. Then, doing that, you come off as nutty, delusion (based on subject) etc., pretty much: their delusional state-of-mind overtakes their sane mind.

-Nam
"presumptions are the bitch of all assumptions" -- me