The God Delusion - Chapter 9

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The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #1

Post by otseng »

Is it a form of child abuse to label children as possessors of beliefs when they are too young to have thought about it?

Should the Bible be a part of public education?

McCulloch's question:
Is the indoctrination of children into religious beliefs morally justified?

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Re: The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #21

Post by Cathar1950 »

otseng wrote:
Scrotum wrote: No, it is the most horrible thing you could do to a child, and with a 90% certanity, will destroy the mind of the person, and make it very hard for them to accept logic and reality.

The question could be stated as "Is the incest-rape of children into submission to its father morally justified?"
Do you have any evidence to back your assertions? If not, then your comments are nothing more than a blanket statement and a flame-bait opinion.
I don't think anyone today that is at least a bit prudishly moral would advocate incest-rape of children even it it is written in the good book.
Yes it is done as is mental rape and psychological abused that sometimes can be worse the physical abuse and last much longer. There is no justification in our modern culture. Yet the are isolated tribes that might be much like our forefathers and mothers sleep with each other have sex or mutual satisfaction from childhood on and they are not sinful depraved peoples. The seem pretty happy.
There is strong evidence that virginity meant you had not had a child and where only good of recreational sex by any family member until you conceived and sacrificed the first born and then the woman was finally worth something.
Yes submission to the father for some purposes to us seem morally reprehensible and it still goes on in authoritarian families or circles with or with out the bible.
It does not take religion or Christianity to make people creepy.
The more there are the more they will get their share of weirdos.
Despite their claims they are still human and I don't see they have anything over people that care about each other and feel included.
I remember someone talking about Canada having a feeling of bring in it together and thus more social net to catch those that fall while the USA bitches about the 70% children on welfare and lacks any health benefits take don't crush anyone that happens to eventually get sick.

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Re: The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #22

Post by Confused »

Scrotum wrote:
otseng wrote:Is it a form of child abuse to label children as possessors of beliefs when they are too young to have thought about it?

Should the Bible be a part of public education?

McCulloch's question:
Is the indoctrination of children into religious beliefs morally justified?
No, it is the most horrible thing you could do to a child, and with a 90% certanity, will destroy the mind of the person, and make it very hard for them to accept logic and reality.


The question could be stated as "Is the incest-rape of children into submission to its father morally justified?"


No one can possible say its moraly OK to indoctrinate a child into religion?
I am unsure how it destroys a persons mind. How many ex-theists do we have on this forum who were raised with religious conviction but as they grew older and analyzed it themselves, found it to be lacking and made informed decisions for themselves (not to say their position is any more superior over those who have decided that it isn't lacking and maintain their faith).

I think a stronger position should be made to teach children how to think for themselves. How to systematically evaluate their position and determine their own foundations.
What we do for ourselves dies with us,
What we do for others and the world remains
and is immortal.

-Albert Pine
Never be bullied into silence.
Never allow yourself to be made a victim.
Accept no one persons definition of your life; define yourself.

-Harvey Fierstein

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Re: The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #23

Post by Confused »

twobitsmedia wrote: I would say philosophy or literature. It could be history, but it would have to more of a course about how it has impacted history, rather than much in the book itself.
I just don't agree with it being taught in primary education. In college, student are given ample opportunity to learn about scripture in ancient literature. They are given ample opportunity to learn about religion in ancient religion courses. The thing is, they are offered as an adult. Not as a child. I think resources are better spent on things such as critical thinking or logic. Give kids the tools to evaluate things for themselves as an adult. Then perhaps we might find some more consistency in current religious doctrine. People would decide their faith on grounds of belief rather than indoctrination.

Then again, perhaps there would be more dissent in doctrine :-k .
What we do for ourselves dies with us,
What we do for others and the world remains
and is immortal.

-Albert Pine
Never be bullied into silence.
Never allow yourself to be made a victim.
Accept no one persons definition of your life; define yourself.

-Harvey Fierstein

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Re: The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #24

Post by Cathar1950 »

Confused wrote:
twobitsmedia wrote: I would say philosophy or literature. It could be history, but it would have to more of a course about how it has impacted history, rather than much in the book itself.
I just don't agree with it being taught in primary education. In college, student are given ample opportunity to learn about scripture in ancient literature. They are given ample opportunity to learn about religion in ancient religion courses. The thing is, they are offered as an adult. Not as a child. I think resources are better spent on things such as critical thinking or logic. Give kids the tools to evaluate things for themselves as an adult. Then perhaps we might find some more consistency in current religious doctrine. People would decide their faith on grounds of belief rather than indoctrination.

Then again, perhaps there would be more dissent in doctrine :-k .
I think you are right there would be more dissent in doctrine among other things.
Bring you children up in the ways of the Lord and they willl not depart is not only untrue but indoctrination and the writer knew it.
But if your parents are worried about their soul critical thinking skills would come a little late as they often act out their parents fears anyway.

twobitsmedia

Re: The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #25

Post by twobitsmedia »

Cathar1950 wrote:
I think you are right there would be more dissent in doctrine among other things.
Bring you children up in the ways of the Lord and they willl not depart is not only untrue but indoctrination and the writer knew it.
But if your parents are worried about their soul critical thinking skills would come a little late as they often act out their parents fears anyway.
This is a misinterpretation and miss-application of the scripture. It does not say to bring your children up in the "ways of the Lord and they will not depart from it." It says to bring him up in the "way he should go, and he will not depart from it." IMO it's one of the greatest parenting suggestions the Bible has to offer. Find out what your childs interests and gifts are....and encourage them accordingly. Encourage him in the "way he should go," not the way the parent wants him to go. The child will NOT depart from his own gifts and personality, and will be very secure. One can bring a child up in the "way of the Lord" as you stated, but, obviously, that guarantees nothing.

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Post #26

Post by QED »

twobitsmedia wrote:
Furrowed Brow wrote:Of course there is then a debate as to what is meant by “balanced”. For example there is no “evolution v creationism” scientific controversy - it would not be balanced to present the argument in such a way as to suggest there is. The reality is that evolution is our best theory by several billion years.
It's the best "abstract theory" based on "abstract logic." It's more of a lesson in how to decipher illusion, than it is science. Though science is involved.
Having seen demonstrations of the principle of evolution by natural selection being put into practice, I could not agree with it being pejoratively branded as "abstract theory" based on "abstract logic". Regardless of that, what I feel is more important is that any time the concept of God is introduced as a solution in any form of education, it is clearly spelt out that nobody knows for sure that God actually exists. For every apparent necessity for God there is another solution -- which is why (whether you agree with this statement or not) the existence of God is still an uncertain fact despite thousands of years of intellectual enquiry. No religious education or theistic explanation that I have ever seen admits to the overarching ambiguity that exists in this respect -- the subject matter always seems to be treated as unquestionable fact.

It might therefore be tempting to ask, at least, for God to be presented using the same standards as adopted by science -- namely that God is a provisional theory which is sufficient to account for the data we have, but may be supplanted at any time the theory no longer fits the facts. But therein lies the problem -- such is the theory that it cannot ever be shown not to fit the facts. How then dare we ever teach what cannot even in principle be shown to be false despite the fact that it could be so?

For example, Dawkins quotes Stephen Layfield, head of science, Vardy schools:
p335 wrote: Perhaps the most disturbing section of Stephen Layfield's lecture is his concluding 'What can be done?', where he considers the tactics to be employed by those teachers wishing to introduce fundamentalist Christianity into the science classroom. For example, he urges science teachers to
note every occasion when an evolutionary/old-earth paradigm (millions or billions of years) is explicitly mentioned or implied by a text-book, examination question or visitor and courteously point out the fallibility of the statement. Wherever possible, we must give the alternative (always better) Biblical explanation of the same data. We shall look at a few examples from each of Physics, Chemistry & Biology in due course.
"Wherever possible, we must give the alternative (always better) Biblical explanation of the same data." That's everywhere when we postulate an all-powerful, unmeasurable entity that having created the universe can warp it in anyway he likes to fit a two-thousand-plus year-old story. Science has no such "wild-card" to play from its hand -- and wouldn't put it on the table even if it did.

twobitsmedia

Re: The God Delusion - Chapter 9

Post #27

Post by twobitsmedia »

Confused wrote: People would decide their faith on grounds of belief rather than indoctrination.
I am not sure that either of these methods would be less confusing. But, I guess my focus is on the God who is there, rather than any belief or indoctrination about Him.

twobitsmedia

Post #28

Post by twobitsmedia »

QED wrote:
twobitsmedia wrote:
Furrowed Brow wrote:Of course there is then a debate as to what is meant by “balanced”. For example there is no “evolution v creationism” scientific controversy - it would not be balanced to present the argument in such a way as to suggest there is. The reality is that evolution is our best theory by several billion years.
It's the best "abstract theory" based on "abstract logic." It's more of a lesson in how to decipher illusion, than it is science. Though science is involved.
Having seen demonstrations of the principle of evolution by natural selection being put into practice, I could not agree with it being pejoratively branded as "abstract theory" based on "abstract logic".
This might be getting off topic, but unless I am misundertanding what you are saying, any "principle" can be demonstrated. But it doesn't become actually real until it is observed., regardless of how many the number of times "this would conclude" can get put into the theory. It then becomes an abstract theory which requires one to decide or feel what they see.
Regardless of that, what I feel is more important is that any time the concept of God is introduced as a solution in any form of education, it is clearly spelt out that nobody knows for sure that God actually exists.
I would say it has no scientifically verified evidence, but there are people who know God exists and go beyond just their "beliefs about beliefs" in God.
Dawkins tried to define it on page 50/51 but I couldn't see him define any "religion" outside of his failed catholic experience.

For every apparent necessity for God there is another solution -- which is why (whether you agree with this statement or not) the existence of God is still an uncertain fact despite thousands of years of intellectual enquiry. No religious education or theistic explanation that I have ever seen admits to the overarching ambiguity that exists in this respect -- the subject matter always seems to be treated as unquestionable fact.
And I would believe that would be the logical athiestic view. And, hence, those of us who say they have experienced God, or rather than say "I beleive God exists" but instead say "God exists" have to be delusional because one cannot have an experience with a God that does not exist. I don't take offense at that, it just has to be the natural sequence of logic from one who does not believe God exists.
It might therefore be tempting to ask, at least, for God to be presented using the same standards as adopted by science -- namely that God is a provisional theory which is sufficient to account for the data we have, but may be supplanted at any time the theory no longer fits the facts. But therein lies the problem -- such is the theory that it cannot ever be shown not to fit the facts. How then dare we ever teach what cannot even in principle be shown to be false despite the fact that it could be so?
God cannot exist according to scientific rationale. The supernatural cannot be put into a test tube.

"Wherever possible, we must give the alternative (always better) Biblical explanation of the same data." That's everywhere when we postulate an all-powerful, unmeasurable entity that having created the universe can warp it in anyway he likes to fit a two-thousand-plus year-old story. Science has no such "wild-card" to play from its hand -- and wouldn't put it on the table even if it did.
It would be impossible based on scientific criteria.

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Post #29

Post by QED »

twobitsmedia wrote:
QED wrote: Having seen demonstrations of the principle of evolution by natural selection being put into practice, I could not agree with it being pejoratively branded as "abstract theory" based on "abstract logic".
This might be getting off topic, but unless I am misunderstanding what you are saying, any "principle" can be demonstrated.
Oh I don't know -- I could mention a number of principles that cannot be demonstrated, there are quite a few in the Bible for example.
twobitsmedia wrote:But it doesn't become actually real until it is observed., regardless of how many the number of times "this would conclude" can get put into the theory.
Sure, which is why I frequently mention the work that goes on in NASA's Evolvable Hardware Division. These guys & girls (and many others working in Educational, Commercial and Military Agencies) are under no illusions that the principle of Evolution by Natural Selection is one perfectly capable of generating autonomous designs for them -- designs that often outperform the best that humans can come up with. If this is something you want to debate I suggest we take it out of this topic and over to the Spot the design, for fun and profit topic.
twobitsmedia wrote:
QED wrote:Regardless of that, what I feel is more important is that any time the concept of God is introduced as a solution in any form of education, it is clearly spelt out that nobody knows for sure that God actually exists.
I would say it has no scientifically verified evidence, but there are people who know God exists and go beyond just their "beliefs about beliefs" in God.
Dawkins tried to define it on page 50/51 but I couldn't see him define any "religion" outside of his failed catholic experience.
Well I don't want to look like I automatically write-off any personal convictions of this sort, but I do worry that these deep-seated feelings are being triggered by basic misunderstandings about the technicalities of the world. For example, I would like to direct you to another topic titled: Our Universe: one of many or specially designed? which describes the ambiguity inherent in our restricted observational location. It could be that the God that many people "sense" is some equally great alternate reality (e.g. an effectively infinite metauniverse from which we have self-selected our own existence). I know that people do "sense" God in this way -- it is evident in the frequent appeals to incredulity that people make when arguing how "perfect" the world is for our existence. Again we digress so I would welcome any further discussion on this point in the topic I linked to above.
twobitsmedia wrote:
QED wrote:For every apparent necessity for God there is another solution -- which is why (whether you agree with this statement or not) the existence of God is still an uncertain fact despite thousands of years of intellectual enquiry. No religious education or theistic explanation that I have ever seen admits to the overarching ambiguity that exists in this respect -- the subject matter always seems to be treated as unquestionable fact.
And I would believe that would be the logical athiestic view. And, hence, those of us who say they have experienced God, or rather than say "I beleive God exists" but instead say "God exists" have to be delusional because one cannot have an experience with a God that does not exist. I don't take offense at that, it just has to be the natural sequence of logic from one who does not believe God exists.
So you're saying that the people providing religious instruction who have their own one-on-one "experiences of God" do not have to admit to any uncertainty or ambiguity as I have suggested?
twobitsmedia wrote:
It might therefore be tempting to ask, at least, for God to be presented using the same standards as adopted by science -- namely that God is a provisional theory which is sufficient to account for the data we have, but may be supplanted at any time the theory no longer fits the facts. But therein lies the problem -- such is the theory that it cannot ever be shown not to fit the facts. How then dare we ever teach what cannot even in principle be shown to be false despite the fact that it could be so?
God cannot exist according to scientific rationale. The supernatural cannot be put into a test tube.
That's all very convenient for theism as system of belief. It certainly sets it apart from every other human science I can think of. Yet on the basis of personal and unsharable "experiences of God" we are supposed to permit the instruction of our Children in the certain existence of a supreme being? That seems like it's just asking for trouble -- what other personal convictions may people choose to share in this way?
twobitsmedia wrote:
QED wrote: "Wherever possible, we must give the alternative (always better) Biblical explanation of the same data." That's everywhere when we postulate an all-powerful, unmeasurable entity that having created the universe can warp it in anyway he likes to fit a two-thousand-plus year-old story. Science has no such "wild-card" to play from its hand -- and wouldn't put it on the table even if it did.
It would be impossible based on scientific criteria.
Well, hundreds of String-Theorists are champing at the bit right now, but as you say -- they're held back by the rules.

twobitsmedia

Post #30

Post by twobitsmedia »

QED wrote:
twobitsmedia wrote:
QED wrote: Having seen demonstrations of the principle of evolution by natural selection being put into practice, I could not agree with it being pejoratively branded as "abstract theory" based on "abstract logic".
This might be getting off topic, but unless I am misunderstanding what you are saying, any "principle" can be demonstrated.
Oh I don't know -- I could mention a number of principles that cannot be demonstrated, there are quite a few in the Bible for example.
Maybe, but I guess it would be what you define as "principle." A "miracle," for example isn't a principle, it is a miracle. No one could demontrate the parting of the Red Sea, turning water into wine, or raising people from the dead. Seas are not suppposed to part, water is not supposed to turn into wine, and dead people are supposed to stay dead. It served a purpose, so it was not "magic," but neither is it science, because it is scientfically impossible to raise someone from the dead or part the Red Sea. With the right additive, I suppose one might be able to do the water to wine thing, but it would be more illusion because the chemical base would be scientifically changed with an additive.


Sure, which is why I frequently mention the work that goes on in NASA's Evolvable Hardware Division. These guys & girls (and many others working in Educational, Commercial and Military Agencies) are under no illusions that the principle of Evolution by Natural Selection is one perfectly capable of generating autonomous designs for them -- designs that often outperform the best that humans can come up with. If this is something you want to debate I suggest we take it out of this topic and over to the Spot the design, for fun and profit topic.
I will look at it.

Well I don't want to look like I automatically write-off any personal convictions of this sort, but I do worry that these deep-seated feelings are being triggered by basic misunderstandings about the technicalities of the world. For example, I would like to direct you to another topic titled: Our Universe: one of many or specially designed? which describes the ambiguity inherent in our restricted observational location. It could be that the God that many people "sense" is some equally great alternate reality (e.g. an effectively infinite metauniverse from which we have self-selected our own existence). I know that people do "sense" God in this way -- it is evident in the frequent appeals to incredulity that people make when arguing how "perfect" the world is for our existence. Again we digress so I would welcome any further discussion on this point in the topic I linked to above.
I will look at it, also. Your "rationalization" of "experience" is logical based on a non-existant God.
twobitsmedia wrote:
QED wrote:For every apparent necessity for God there is another solution -- which is why (whether you agree with this statement or not) the existence of God is still an uncertain fact despite thousands of years of intellectual enquiry. No religious education or theistic explanation that I have ever seen admits to the overarching ambiguity that exists in this respect -- the subject matter always seems to be treated as unquestionable fact.
And I would believe that would be the logical athiestic view. And, hence, those of us who say they have experienced God, or rather than say "I beleive God exists" but instead say "God exists" have to be delusional because one cannot have an experience with a God that does not exist. I don't take offense at that, it just has to be the natural sequence of logic from one who does not believe God exists.
So you're saying that the people providing religious instruction who have their own one-on-one "experiences of God" do not have to admit to any uncertainty or ambiguity as I have suggested?
They often do, but I don't know why. It's almost like they had this experince, but they are afraid to admit it was real....for fear? for fear of being critiqued? Uncertainty about what they experienced? (These are rhetorical questions....I don't know) The Bible uses very definite words describing those who actually have had experience and the word is "know." It goes beyond belief and into relationship. But, I admit there are people who claim a relationship, but still are afraid to admit it with any certainty.
That's all very convenient for theism as system of belief. It certainly sets it apart from every other human science I can think of. Yet on the basis of personal and unsharable "experiences of God" we are supposed to permit the instruction of our Children in the certain existence of a supreme being? That seems like it's just asking for trouble -- what other personal convictions may people choose to share in this way?
Maybe, but I am not sure I can define "theism" as a science, based on how science is defined. Creationism is theory based on beginnings. There are some "creationsists" who seem to have wanted to look at science to get it to back up creationism. But it's foundationally flawed as a science with "God created" because science cannot prove God. And God made no attempt to prove himself. It is just reported "God created." (No explanation).

Well, hundreds of String-Theorists are champing at the bit right now, but as you say -- they're held back by the rules.
If we could get the CNN coverage of creation, there might be a chance..... :D

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