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@Bitchspot1 I know what you mean about that. All you have to do is express a contrary opinion about religious belief and odds are someone who reads it or hears it will decide a fight is necessary. I don't mind them in reasonable doses. When a person is mostly trying to get me to shut up I think it's important to push back just enough to get the message across that I won't. Sometimes that requires a little more aggressiveness than I would have expressed otherwise, but what are you going to do? My guide here is a favorite cartoon describing the difference between Old Atheism and New Atheism. In the first panel the cleric says "Be Quiet" and the Old Atheist doesn't say anything. In the second the cleric gives the same command and the New Atheist just says "No". Expressing that NO is still important, I think.
1 year, 3 months ago on A Rant – I Quit
I don't blame you for feeling this way. Looking for fights get's old. There are people who like to brawl in opposition to superstition and mere belief and I wouldn't tell them to give it up. Brawlers and brawling have their place. But I don't think it's the only thing to do in service of reason, nor do I think it's always healthy to slug away all the time.
Love how you closed this and how it points to learning the stories of people who have transitioned from religious true belief to unbelief as essential. The transition is a slow march to a tipping point that only seems sudden. Julia Sweeney's Letting Go of God is a perfect case. The "out of nowhere" realization that there was no god that happened in her backyard was the product of years of processing. It's better to talk to people as if they're on a long road instead of just insisting they're lost.
2 years, 4 months ago on Faith and the Non-Answer
This reminds me a lot of Carl Sagan's comment about how open-mindedness and skepticism "are in some tension" but if you give in to either one wholly you are lost.
2 years, 4 months ago on The Hyper-Skeptic Problem
The idea of the internet silo or the echo chamber is tempting, but there's evidence it's exaggerated. http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2012/01/online_echo_chambers_a_study_of_250_million_facebook_users_reveals_the_web_isn_t_as_polarized_as_we_thought_.html
2 years, 5 months ago on Making Monsters – By Tauriq Moosa