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Poland's atheist loonies have had their 5 minutes


jon357 69 | 18,445
16 Dec 2013 #211
can in fact be expressed in many different ways

Or in fact none at all. People are entitled to believe in the supernatural, though never, ever, has even one scrap of proof turned up.
smurf 39 | 1,981
16 Dec 2013 #212
Dostoevsky

Not a good example, although an incredibly intelligent writer, it's quite easy to pick him apart.
He was also incredibly closed-minded in his beliefs, as this quite clearly illustrates.

"If anyone could prove to me that Christ is outside the truth, and if the truth really did exclude Christ, I should prefer to stay with Christ and not with the truth."

Even if it was proved to him, he wouldn't have been able to accept it, not someone you should be basing the hinge of your argument on as even if presented with the truth he wouldn't have accepted it.

enough to even contemplate the argument presented by....

Well, it's not hard to find an argument against this famous Russian....

some critics have seen Dostoevsky's plots as chaotic and disorganized (in particular, those of The Idiot and The Possessed), (4) others have found them "Gothic" and aimed at cheap effects; (5) still others have charged Dostoevsky with excessive naturalism ("copying court records"). (6) Many critics have found Dostoevsky's characters unnatural, schematic, and contrived. (7) The observation that they all talk alike - like the author - is heard often. (8)

utoronto.ca/tsq/DS/06/165.shtml

Great moral flaws have also been found in Dostoevsky's works. The charge heard most often is that of pessimism. (10) Almost as often, the outrй, hysterical, and morbid nature of Dostoevsky's works is held up to censure. The label of a "cruel talent" has stuck to him ever since Mikhailovsky's essay of that title appeared in 1882. (11) Dostoevsky's fascination with the extremes of the human condition is condemned by many critics. Less common are charges of insincerity, unctuousness, (12), and "rosy Christianity." (13)

&

he is said to have pursued the exceptional instead of the typical. Tendentious distortion of reality is a common charge, (14) as is that of faulty psychology. In an age of realism, Dostoevsky's penchant for the fantastic, the paradoxic, and the mystical met with much disapproval. A criticism heard somewhat less frequently is that Dostoevsky develops his psychological dramas in the abstract, without a natural background. Also, some critics claim that Dostoevsky's psychological analysis keeps him from presenting credible whole characters. (15)

We can all agree that Dostoevsky was a good writer (although many of his characters were quite wooden), but his views of Christianity are not only outdated (you have written before that religion is 'relevant'?), but most damning of all....

In the 1860s and 1870s, charges of excessive psychologizing were made frequently. (38) Occasionally, a critic, Dobroljubov, for example, (39) would also claim that Dostoevsky's psychology was faulty or schematic, but most of all it would be suggested that Dostoevsky's morbidly self-conscious and self-lacerating characters were unrepresentative of the actual condition of Russian society, but were, rather, projections of Dostoevsky's own diseased mind.

All quotes from hereutoronto.ca/tsq/DS/06/165.shtmlDawkins himself did of course criticise Dostoevsky, when he said:

It seems to me to require quite a low self-regard to think that, should belief in God suddenly vanish from the world, we would all become callous and selfish hedonists, with no kindness, no charity, no generosity, nothing that would deserve the name of goodness. It is widely believed that Dostoevsky was of that opinion, presumably because of some of remarks he put into the mouth of Ivan Karamazov...

voices.yahoo/dostoevsky-nietzche-christian-novelist-influenced-3217680.html

However, Dostoevsky did himself give quite a nice image for what a godless/heavenless/eternal life-less might look like.

The great idea of immortality would disappear and would have to replaced; and all the great abundance of the former love for the one who was himself immortality, would be turned in all of them to nature, to the world. To people, to every blade of grass. They would love the earth and life irrepressibly and in the measure to which they gradually became aware of their transient and finite state...The would wake up and hasten to kiss each other, hurrying to love, conscious that the days were short, and that that was all they had left. They would work for each other, and each would give all he had to everyone, and would be happy in that alone. Every child would know and feel that each person on earth was like a father and mother to him. 'Tomorrow may be my last day,' each of them would think, looking at the setting sun, 'but all the same, though I die, they will all remain, and their children after them' - and this thought that would remain... would replace the thought of a meeting beyond the grave.

notesfromanidiot.wordpress.com/tag/dawkins
kondzior 12 | 1,242
17 Dec 2013 #213
People are entitled to believe in the supernatural, though never, ever, has even one scrap of proof turned up.

Not right, because God is not only transcendence, but also immanence. Even beyond the question of intellection, which in itself surpasses both faith and reason and is able to see the reality for what it is, anyone with a spiritual disposition will still find the atheist world to be a monstrous impossibility, for the face of God is everywhere, as the Muslims say. I didn't start my journey towards spirituality because I was "indoctrinated" by this or that religion. I started out because i saw the absurdity of the modern world, which sees value only in the material, where I always saw value in things which by their nature are transcendent and cannot be "proven". Discovering the Sophia Perennis and the spiritual life has basically confirmed what I knew to be right all along. The world is nothing, only that which transcends this reality matters.

It seems to me to require quite a low self-regard to think that, should belief in God suddenly vanish from the world, we would all become callous and selfish hedonists, with no kindness, no charity, no generosity, nothing that would deserve the name of goodness.

What Dostoevsky did was actually quite spectacular, because he basically agreed with Nietzsche in his critique of conventional morality, but then rejected the latter's definition of what morality was actually about by demolishing the idea of the ubermensh, which technically would have led to a complete nihilistic conception of morality, except he then demolishes nihilism as well. His solution was conventional (faith!), but it sort of feels hackneyed, because faith is not actually what Dostoevsky has in mind. At the end of the novel, what Raskolnikov actually went through was a complete annihilation of the self, an experience which is central to all religious traditions, Buddhism in particular. Dostoevsky basically did what Nietzsche never could do. He stepped over the boundaries of conventional human thought right into the transcendent.

That makes not one whit of sense, except to someone with the same set of disordered brain chemicals.

I'm waiting to see your contribution to this thread...

Now, to quote Schuon again:

Rationalism, taken in its broadest sense, is the very negation of Platonic anamnesis; it consists in seeking the elements of certitude in phenomena rather than in our very being

Does the fact I cannot "prove" that I can see light actually mean that I do not see it? What does the existence of a something have to do with my ability to provide "proof" for its existence? If I see light, do I not see it anymore if i cannot "prove" that i do? And so, if I see that Beethoven is a genius, do I cease to see it merely because I cannot provide proof for its existence? Thus, the fallacy of rationalism is that it seeks certainty in dialectic without taking into account for the fact the existence of a something is completely independent by our ability to explain its existence using words alone.
jon357 69 | 18,445
17 Dec 2013 #214
What does the existence of a something have to do with my ability to provide "proof" for its existence?

You're mixing up 'a something', with a something, belief in which has caused countless damage to humanity over the centuries and continues to cause real misery today.

Fairy tales, whose proponents think we should all believe in.
smurf 39 | 1,981
17 Dec 2013 #215
Dostoevsky basically did what Nietzsche never could do. He stepped over the boundaries of conventional human thought right into the transcendent.

I wouldn't agree with that for a second. Nietzsche was one of the greatest philosophers the modern world has seen, Dostoevsky wrote fiction.

What Dostoevsky did was actually quite spectacular, because he basically agreed with Nietzsche in his critique of conventional morality, but then rejected the latter's definition of what morality was actually about by demolishing the idea of the ubermensh

Again, I cannot agree with this, Dostoevsky didn't 'demolish the idea of the ubermench' at all. In actuality wasn't it Nietzsche who was inspired to get working on his idea of the ubermensh after he had read, and disagreed, with Crime & Punishment?

In the simplest terms Dostoevsky said that man would not function with a god and that if man should live without a god they would fall into a world of brutality, vulgarism and egoism...nihilism.

Nietzsche believed that by rejecting the idea of god, man would flourish in a fully secularized world. The ubermench would be the ideal that humankind would try to attain. He is godless but he is far from being immoral, vulgar, brutal or egotistic.

Too many people believe that Nietzsche wanted a nihilistic world, that wasn't the case at all. He saw the world of science taking over the world of religion, leading to overall nihilism which would in turn would lead to the rise of his ubermench.

Maybe we are in the throes of his period of nihilism currently, or maybe it is soon to come? Atheism is certainly rising (in the West at least).

Dostoevsky was the pessimist of the two, he believed we were doomed without a god, Nietzsche believed that the sooner we as a species accept that there is no god then the sooner humans can truly come to realize their potential.
kondzior 12 | 1,242
17 Dec 2013 #216
Fairy tales, whose proponents think we should all believe in.

If a blind person is calling the light a fairy tale, and demands proof of it's existence, how I should respond?

I wouldn't agree with that for a second. Nietzsche was one of the greatest philosophers the modern world has seen, Dostoevsky wrote fiction.

Nietzsche called Dostoevsky his "favored" philosopher once. This might be the first time in history where a philosopher build a philosophy out of a refutation of that philosophy. Raskolnikov is almost the perfect blue print of what Nietzsche envisioned with the "ubermensch" except Dostoevsky actually showed us what a pitiful figure that truly is.
smurf 39 | 1,981
17 Dec 2013 #217
except Dostoevsky actually showed us what a pitiful figure that truly is.

But that's impossible, Nietzsche's book where he spoke about this ubermensch, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, was published in German in 1883. Dostoyevsky's The Brothers Karamazov was published three years earlier in 1880...since that's the book we were talking about.

However, if you want to change to the character of Raskolnikov from Crime & Punishment then I again must whole heatedly disagree with you. Raskolnikov was a figure driven by Dostoevsky's (baised) view of what rationalism was.

You may not agree with this, but I think we can certainly agree on the fact that what Dostoevsky & Nietzsche understood by rationalism were two completely different kettles of fish.

Nietzsche's ubermensch bears almost no resemblance to Dostoevsky's Raskolnikov. And he couldn't have shown that the ubermensch was a fallacy when he wrote Crime and Punishment in 1866, because the concept itself wasn't published until 17 years later in a different language.
jon357 69 | 18,445
17 Dec 2013 #218
the light

Your imagined 'light'. Unless you can prove fairy tales are real.
Harry
17 Dec 2013 #219
hey Harry, maybe you can construct a machine that proves the opposite?

I'm not the one making any claim here. If you want to claim something, you need to be able to prove it.

How about being a little less disrespectful, huh?

It isn't me who is trying to tell people that they must live their lives in line with my morals and beliefs.
f stop 25 | 2,513
17 Dec 2013 #220
while you're at it, Harry, prove that Santa does not exist as well.
Harry
17 Dec 2013 #221
So if you say, God doesn't exist

If you want to claim that I say that god doesn't exist? Prove I've said that.
kondzior 12 | 1,242
17 Dec 2013 #222
Unless you can prove fairy tales are real.

Again, I'm not the one arguing that things cannot exist a priori unless they can be proven to exist. The fact I express absolute certainty in the genius of Beethoven doesn't mean this certainty automatically constitutes proof to those who cannot see that genius, but this is not the same thing as saying my conviction cannot be "objective", or rooted on something that is absolute and very real. The fact I cannot prove the existence of this genius does not automatically mean my impression is false, or relative, but it is according to modern rationalism.

I submit that an Absolute must in fact exist since all phenomena is invariably bound to relativity. Notice that modern science is fond of positing the exact opposite. That the relative "something" is predicated upon a "nothingness" rather then an absolute somethingness. What's arbitrary to me is the idea that this proposition is somehow more "rational" than its opposite.

ou may not agree with this, but I think we can certainly agree on the fact that what Dostoevsky & Nietzsche understood by rationalism were two completely different kettles of fish. Nietzsche's ubermensch bears almost no resemblance to Dostoevsky's Raskolnikov.

They are exactly the same, except the Crime and Punishment shows the actual consequences of what a world without religion actually leads to.
Without placing "meaning" in something which transcends the purely material it is sure nihilistic. After all, "belief", by definition, transcends that which is readily visible and tangible, I.E., the relative world. Speaking of which, nihilism in general, at least in its actual "serious" incarnation, I.E., Nietzsche and philosophers of that irk, arose precisely after "belief" was killed off by rationalism (God is dead, etc.). That is, when you deny any reality which transcends the relative world, the latter simply loses all meaning. The so called "Age of Enlightenment" and the optimistic materialism that arose out of that milieu was something only dupes could truly believe in. The "reality" of the rationalists ended up being no reality at all. But while those smart enough to see through the bullsh!t wallowed in their own demented nihilism, the rest of society kept going with their merry charade. Only with Dostoevsky one can find a solution of sort to the problem raised by Nietzsche, but even that wasn't enough since Dostoevsky only knew religion in its exoteric dimension. Ultimately, only pure metaphysics can deliver the modern world from its predicament, but this is a type of knowledge that is extremely hard to come by this days. Western civilization has driven itself into a cul-de-sac.
smurf 39 | 1,981
18 Dec 2013 #223
Ultimately, only pure metaphysics can deliver the modern world from its predicament, but this is a type of knowledge that is extremely hard to come by this days. Western civilization has driven itself into a cul-de-sac

I would agree with the first part, but I'm more hopefully that the West will find a way :)
Harry
18 Dec 2013 #224
The fact I cannot prove the existence of this genius does not automatically mean my impression is false, or relative, but it is according to modern rationalism.

We aren't asking you to prove that your god is a genius (as 'genius' is a subjective term; there are a good number of people who really do genuinely believe that Justin Bieber is a genius); we're just asking you to prove that your god exists. After all, the people who claim that Justin Bieber is a genius can at the very least prove that Justin Bieber, unfortunately.
kondzior 12 | 1,242
18 Dec 2013 #225
Say person A hates Bieber while person B thinks he is actually a great musician. Person A can still be right while person B can still be wrong whether person A can actually prove his case critically or not. By claiming that person A can only be right unless he can "prove" his opinion automatically implies no true evaluation of the music can actually be considered to be objective or absolute in any way or form, because nobody can actually prove something like that.

I posit that person A can actually be right whether his opinion can be proven rationally or not, and that my evaluation of his opinion is independent of said proof, since I can simply pit my own subjective assessment of the music and decide for myself which one of us is right. By stating that only that which can be proven can be considered to be objective, the rationalist hinders this process of acquiring knowledge from the opinion of others simply by establishing a priori that no opinion is truly objective and cannot be so in principle, and not simply in fact.
Harry
18 Dec 2013 #226
the opinion of others simply by establishing a priori that no opinion is truly objective and cannot be so in principle, and not simply in fact.

Opinions are, by definition, not facts.
jon357 69 | 18,445
18 Dec 2013 #227
I posit that person A can actually be right whether his opinion can be proven rationally or not,

Right that he 'hates' someone...

person B thinks

Right that he thinks something.

Neither of those two people's tastes or 'beliefs' have any impact on the nature or existence of Justin Bieber.

I like Santa - it doesn't mean his beard is real enough to pull. I hate Fanny Price - it doesn't mean she'll leap out of the pages waving a wet fish.
kondzior 12 | 1,242
18 Dec 2013 #228
Opinions are, by definition, not facts.

But that's liek, your opinion, man.
sobieski 107 | 2,128
18 Dec 2013 #229
Why do you also sound like Torquemada on a bad day?
Btw...I have asked this a few times...What is your opinion of Pope Franciscus? As compared to pope benedict and pope JPII ?
Somehow I have the idea he is not of your ilk....
kondzior 12 | 1,242
18 Dec 2013 #230
I have asked this a few times...What is your opinion of Pope Franciscus?

Pope Francis is doing everything he can to aggrandize himself with both the media and the dumb masses. There isn't an ounce of sincerity in his bones, he has been acting like a media star since his appointment.

Despite all this, lefists will still gripe and complain, since it is the Church itself they hate, pedophile priests and things like that are just an excuse.
Maybe 12 | 409
19 Dec 2013 #231
Pope Francis is doing everything he can to aggrandize himself with both the media and the dumb masses. There isn't an ounce of sincerity in his bones, he has been acting like a media star since his appointment.

Why would pope Francis need 'aggrandise' himself, he is The Pope. And acting like a media star??? You have lost me.
From what little I understand he is trying to sort out the Caligulan vipers nest of crypto-facist nonces that have infected the Vatican.
whyikit 6 | 102
19 Dec 2013 #232
Despite all this, lefists will still gripe and complain, since it is the Church itself they hate, pedophile priests and things like that are just an excuse.

No I would say that is your view point and not a fact. yes there are some who are anti religion but not most....

I am probably one of those you call a "lefists" however I do not see myself as such. I personally think The new pope has been a breath of fresh air and have for the first time in years agreed with what he has being saying (at times). I still think more can be done to sort the CC but feel he is at least moving in the right direction. He seems a lot better than the previous recent popes and is trying to sort some of the problems out.
jon357 69 | 18,445
19 Dec 2013 #233
The new pope has been a breath of fresh air

He seems a lot better than the previous recent popes and is trying to sort some of the problems out.

Agreed. The best since John XXIII.

The scandals won't go away though unless they're tackled head on. The sexual abuse is the big elephant in the room, and the next big thing will be the RCCs links to organised crime in Italy and elsewhere.

Pope Francis is doing everything he can to aggrandize himself

Someone with a golden throne whose picture is on sale in every other village doesn't need to do that.
sobieski 107 | 2,128
19 Dec 2013 #234
Pope Francis is doing everything he can to aggrandize himself with both the media and the dumb masses. There isn't an ounce of sincerity in his bones, he has been acting like a media star since his appointment.

Of course you would not like him. I would say he is the opposite of being a media star. Longing for Pius XII, do you?
kondzior 12 | 1,242
19 Dec 2013 #235
Longing for Pius XII, do you?

Well, yes. The last noble pope: Also among the most hated by the current establishment. Coincidence? I think not.
jon357 69 | 18,445
19 Dec 2013 #236
The last noble pope:

JPII and most Poles wouldn't be pleased to hear that. Unless you're trying to mean noble in the sense of background in which case Paul VI (also an excellent Pope) would be somewhat bemused.
sobieski 107 | 2,128
19 Dec 2013 #237
Pope Francis is doing everything he can to aggrandize himself with both the media and the dumb masses.

Let's see...
- He intends to clean up the pigsty called the Vatican Bank
- He wants the clergy to lead a life of modesty and shun luxury cars
- Even the cardinals in the Vatican now have to register in and out when going to "work"
- He attacks paedophile priests really hard
- He wants to reconciliate the Church with the people
- He thinks gays and divorced people are....people
- When he was still an archbishop he went to work by public transport
- He is living very modestly as a Pope

And please define "dumb masses". Everybody else besides yourself?

Btw Pius XII was a virulentanti-Semitic, who did not mind working together with Hitler, and wrecked his Centre Party in Germany.
He did not lift a finger when the Nazis deported the Jews of Rome, right beneath his window.
kondzior 12 | 1,242
19 Dec 2013 #238
Whatever. Who cares. Still, one have to admire his style, when he fought the communist italian party. We could use a pope like that nowdays, who would not flinch to excommunicate everyone supporting abortion or gay marriages.

We can argue all day long, but if someone anty-religious like Jon speaks about current pope with approval, you must see that something is wrong with the guy.

And please define "dumb masses"

Also known as usefull idiots.
jon357 69 | 18,445
20 Dec 2013 #239
who would not flinch to excommunicate everyone supporting abortion or gay marriages.

Interesting that you fail to mention his tolerance of the mafia.


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