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Old 08-03-2013, 07:28 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
14,197 posts, read 9,097,133 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Marcinkiewicz View Post
mordant, if you wrote an autobiography, I would read it, just for the record. Your way of describing otherwise unextraordinary topics is a pleasure to behold.
LOL -- well thanks, Matt, nice of you to say so. I don't feel any need to record my life for posterity but who knows, some years down the road I may have more time on my hands than sense and would do it just for fun. Probably fictionalized to spare the not-so-innocent ;-)
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Old 08-03-2013, 09:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOTaTHEIST View Post
This is a good place to start hanging myself again

First of all, I don't believe this has anything to do with raw intelligence. Let's get that out of the way. In fact, I would tend to generalize women as typically more intelligent than men. That said, raw intelligence is something that is extremely difficult to quantify. In my family however, the women tend to disregard reason and skepticism at a much higher rate than the men do, which is somewhat consistent because most of them compartmentalize with emotion.

Fifty years ago, this next statement would probably have been taken with a much worse degree of insult. I don't think people come to god belief (remember, that's what we're talking about in this thread) for rational reasons. Basically that leaves us with just emotional reasons for true belief. IF (big if) it's true women are more easily swayed by emotional reasons, then it stands they'd be more likely to accept a proposition which is entirely based on emotional reasoning.

Do you find it inaccurate to hold the proposition that women seem more easily swayed by emotional reasoning than men? If so, why? Understand this is a generalization and does not apply to every single instance in either subgroup. If it's true that it's easier to sway women with emotional reasoning based upon some innate biological trait, then the women who overcome god belief are exemplary individuals. And the ones who are open about it, even more so.


Note my boldfaced highlighting of your quotes from above.



A number of years ago, my mother heard me talking with someone else at a Thanksgiving dinner about the general theme of 'theism vs. non-theism' (god-belief vs. disinclination to believe in the god concept) and she interjected with the following passion-filled comments:
"I KNOW there is a God, because I feel it in my heart !!!"
and then, a little afterwards, she said:
"I KNOW there is a God, because it makes me feel good !!!"

Well, I knew right then and there that the spirits of Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, Bertrand Russell, Carl Sagan, Isaac Asimov, Stephen Hawking, Victor Stenger, John Loftus, Dan Barker, and the great multitude of other non-believing public intellectuals and thinkers throughout the ages heard those remarks from the mouth of my mother (now deceased) and were just stopped in their tracks and floored by it! Why, they simply had not thought of that angle beforre and were left gap-mouthed and dumbfounded! Wny had this profound logic and reasoning escaped them for so very, very long? They ALL disavowed their nonbelief right then and there & became passionate believers and evangelists from there-on!!! It only took my mother's incisive intellect and reasoning (or should I say 'emotion') to straighten them all out.

She is a good example of someone (merely coincidentally just happening to be female) who sees the world and life mostly through an emotional lens.
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Old 08-04-2013, 11:18 PM
 
Location: Northeastern US
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UsAll View Post
She is a good example of someone (merely coincidentally just happening to be female) who sees the world and life mostly through an emotional lens.
Well ... I have to admit that unbelief is difficult to market even to some intellectuals because mortality and an indifferent universe arouse the fear and loathing even of people who are relatively dispassionate. This is where I feel the Buddhists have something to offer, with their teaching about impermanence. It is not that impermanence is really that awful, it is people's attachment to the idea is so total and lifelong that they are unable to handle bare-metal reality. But once you realize that permanence (and, in particular, a permanent self) is illusory, and let go of that illusion, it is simple to let go of all the subsidiary illusions that go along with it, including the god illusion.
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Old 08-05-2013, 03:00 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mordant View Post
Well ... I have to admit that unbelief is difficult to marketeven to some intellectuals because mortality and an indifferent universe arouse the fear and loathing even of people who are relatively dispassionate. This is where I feel the Buddhists have something to offer, with their teaching about impermanence. It is not that impermanence is really that awful, it is people's attachment to the idea is so total and lifelong that they are unable to handle bare-metal reality. But once you realize that permanence (and, in particular, a permanent self) is illusory, and let go of that illusion, it is simple to let go of all the subsidiary illusions that go along with it, including the god illusion.

Yes, it appears that, at the core of it, the great bulk of religious belief is motivated, at its very core, by fear of death and all that that implies or brings (or seemingly so): whether the fear of how one comes upon their death, where they come upon it, under what circumstances they come upon it, the actual process of dying (unless one's death is instantaneous or near-instantaneous), the actual state of being dead, where (if anywhere) they go or what happens to them (if anything) upon their death, leaving behind all their dashed hopes and dreams and unfinished business, leaving behind loved ones (family, relatives, friends), never getting justice in life for some real or alleged or purported or imagined injustices or wrongdoings perpetuated against them), the permanence or seeming permanence & irreversiblity of death, wishing they had more time to do more of whatever, the desire to live a much longer time or to live forever in some form or manner, and on and on and on.

Parallel to this, it is motivated by (1) a desire to transcend the real or apparent or seeming limitations of our human lives, (2) the desire for your mind or spirit or soul (i.e., your personality, character, imagination, thoughts, et al) to never cease to exist; (3) the desire to not be limited by our physical and physiological limitations, (4) the desire to never lose and to always be with or be re-united with your loved ones (family, relatives, friends) forever, and (5) the wish or desire for magical-like powers or abilities (e.g., you wish you could read other peoples' minds or hearts and know what truly think and feel; you wish that nothing you do will adversely affect your physical well-being),.

In summary, these motivations or drives are so powerful for so many people that, even amongst some rather intelligent persons (even some who are otherwise very intelligent or even brilliant), they hold on to these magical-like beliefs. . . or perhaps (instead of beliefs), they might be called "hopes"). That is, even the most intelligent among them may not wholly claim that they know that such religoius notions and proclamations are actually true but they do very much wish that they are or were true.
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Old 08-05-2013, 07:35 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
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Quote:
Many people hold the tacit belief that atheism equals rationalism and rationalism is gender-neutral, and therefore sexism canít exist among atheists.
I discovered this to be true once when I went to check out a group that called themselves "Humanists." I was curious to see what they were all about since they claimed to be be atheists and since at that time I was still questioning my beliefs or lack thereof I thought I would check them out. A friend was going to come to the gathering with me. It was to be on a Sunday. There was to be a discussion of theism and atheism in Society today. It sounded like something I would have like to be in on.

To our surprise, my friend and I were asked to bring a hot dish by our fellow classmate. Since neither of us cooks, we asked if this was a special occasion. We were told, no, Sunday afternoons the women cooked while the men played golf and when the menfolk returned, everyone feasted. Then they had their discussion time after the women cleaned up. To be fair, though, the women did participate in the discussion.

I asked if the women ever got their Sunday off or the equivalency at any other time. I was told "no."

If they all accepted the traditional gender role, that was their business but somehow this just seemed so out of character for a group of people calling themselves "Humanists." They were relegating roles as they have been played for thousands upon thousands of years perpetuating the inequality of the sexes. There didn't seem to be anything very "human" about that. It seemed pretty close to the Adam and Eve issue of male superiority taught in the deist bible.

I was glad to hear the there were a group of women atheists when our classmate told us about the group but I was unhappy about the fact that they accepted the role of subservience rather than one of equality. But perhaps I was putting too fine a spin on the situation.

But my friend felt as I did. We never did make that meeting. We went out for breakfast instead.
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Old 08-05-2013, 10:35 PM
 
Location: WA
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Minervah: That is whack. I can only hope that maybe the "cooking" involved drinking wine and ordering pizza?
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Old 08-05-2013, 10:50 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,698 posts, read 23,696,516 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seattlenextyear View Post
Minervah: That is whack. I can only hope that maybe the "cooking" involved drinking wine and ordering pizza?
Nope. My friend and I were asked to bring something we made or store bought but they weren't talking pizza or wine. They wanted a side dish to be added to a sit down meal meal.

Pizza and wine would have been fun though.
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Old 08-05-2013, 11:49 PM
 
Location: Vernon, British Columbia
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I see a lot of "because the polls show that there are less women than men identifying as atheists, the women must be closet atheists" going on. Then I read some of the same people stating that they don't believe anything without evidence, yet they believe the statement above without evidence. Strange. If the first pre-supposition were true, then we wouldn't see as many women going to church against their husband's wishes that we do today (I can think of 3 off the top of my head here in my small town of 2,000 people).
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Old 08-06-2013, 03:25 AM
 
39,220 posts, read 10,895,806 times
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I suppose that atheism doesn't need to change anything except the acceptance of religious claims, but I do feel that a reconsideration of our traditional modes of thought is needed, notably regarding gender issues. The 'elevatorgate' business (of which the theist opposition tried to make a huge deal) did raise this ongoing and very serious issue of women feeling safe to go anywhere.

There was also mention of the 'old boys' club'. I find it hard to imagine an atheist group that would not welcome full and hefty participation by women, but perhaps there is a problem still with entrenched views of gender -roles.
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Old 08-06-2013, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,698 posts, read 23,696,516 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glacierx View Post
I see a lot of "because the polls show that there are less women than men identifying as atheists, the women must be closet atheists" going on. Then I read some of the same people stating that they don't believe anything without evidence, yet they believe the statement above without evidence. Strange. If the first pre-supposition were true, then we wouldn't see as many women going to church against their husband's wishes that we do today (I can think of 3 off the top of my head here in my small town of 2,000 people).
Just hearing the phrase "against their husband's wishes" gives me the heebie jeebies. I sympathize with the women of your town.

It's just bullying and it only makes the believer even more resolved to hang onto their belief system.
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