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InvisibleSwami
Eggshell Walker

Registered: 01/19/00
Posts: 15,413
Loc: In the hen house
Are Believers Rational Beings?
    #613124 - 04/19/02 07:41 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

from InfidelGod:
Believers are actually rational beings, we're just not ruled by logic.

from Webster:
rational: Consistent with or based on reason; logical

from www.dictionary.com:
reason: a sufficient ground of explanation or of logical defense; especially : something that supports a conclusion or explains a fact

According to modern English language definitions, they most certainly are not (at least in the area of belief).


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


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OfflineWeirdShroomer
journeyman
Registered: 04/01/02
Posts: 78
Loc: Sebia
Last seen: 14 years, 7 months
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613134 - 04/19/02 07:51 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

I see....And point is?
"Believers are actually rational beings, we're just not ruled by logic. "
Sound like load of crap to me.




--------------------
----weird-----
Smoking dynamite can seriously blow your mind


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InvisibleSclorch
Clyster

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 07/13/99
Posts: 4,805
Loc: On the Brink of Madness
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613136 - 04/19/02 07:55 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

1. Should a belief preface supporting evidence for that belief?

2. If so, is this not blind belief?

3. Is blindly believing in something a good thing?

4. If so, why?


--------------------
Note: In desperate need of a cure...


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InvisibleLallafa
p_g monocle
 User Gallery

Registered: 04/13/01
Posts: 2,598
Loc: underbelly
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Sclorch]
    #613146 - 04/19/02 08:11 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

"Is blindly believing in something a good thing?"

i think that it has potential to help an individual
but it has always been detrimental to humanity as a whole

beliefs justify actions that would otherwise be deemed immoral
the bible should have been 1 page
?do unto others?..?


--------------------
my tax dollars going to more hits of acid for charles manson


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Anonymous

Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613177 - 04/19/02 08:42 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

There's two sides of the brain. The logical/rational side, and the emotional/creative side. Are you saying and/or implying that believers are missing the left side of their brain and/or never use it?

If so, are you missing the right side of your brain?


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Anonymous

Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613184 - 04/19/02 08:49 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

It takes logic for me to form words and to be able to type them onto this computer. If I was being illogical, I would try to smashing my head into the moniter or perhaps foraging for various twigs in order to respond to your message.

What you are suggesting is illogical in and of itself.

Have you met any of us "believers" in real life? Do you know what makes us tick? Do you know that we come on this Spirituality and Philosophy message boards to discuss Spirituality and Philosophy, and that perhaps the things we say on this board are just that, and that we have lives outside of it? Do you know that Spirituality and Philosophy is not based in a world of logic and proof?


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InvisibleSclorch
Clyster

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 07/13/99
Posts: 4,805
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Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: ]
    #613220 - 04/19/02 09:34 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

There is such a phenomenon known as "Bad Logic".
Just because one side of the brain is known as the "logical" side, doesn't mean that all thoughts that come from that side are logically consistent.

"Have you met any of us "believers" in real life? Do you know what makes us tick?"

Yeah, I went to a Rainbow gathering or two... most of the people there are clinging to an Image of a trend from forty years ago (you honestly think being dirty and wearing tie-dye automatically make you a free thinker?). There were a few people that were relatively (compared to the rest of the nutcases) grounded... but even they didn't have all of their shit together.

"Do you know that Spirituality and Philosophy is not based in a world of logic and proof?"

Prove it. hehe
This kind of thinking is not productive. I will never believe in something blindly. I will run with a belief only so far... and only if I have to (life or death). Since I do believe in Fallibilism, my doubts are always working on my belief system. Honing, revising, reviewing... always looking for problems. Although it may seem like I am searching for infallibility, I am not. There will always be internal conflict. I am fully aware of this. But blindly believing something is not part of this conflict.

An example of this conflict?: Free Will or Determinism...
I can see both sides of this argument. Both are quite plausible and rational. And although I lean towards the Free Will end of the continuum, I doubt my position all the time... because of my lack of proof. There is no evidence of DOUBT in the "believer's" (in this case) argument. All we get are assertions and circularity.


--------------------
Note: In desperate need of a cure...


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Invisibleraytrace
Stranger

Registered: 01/15/02
Posts: 720
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613253 - 04/19/02 10:20 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

According to modern English language definitions, they most certainly are not (at least in the area of belief).

not "at least in the area of belief", but merely "in the area of belief"

so, better: you are asking: "are believers rational in the area of belief?"
i would answer: no.

but you cannot say believers are irrational beings.
cause if you say so, at the same time artists are irrational beings. (art is not based on logic)
from what i know, you are also an artist, so you imply you are also an irrational being.


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Anonymous

Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: ]
    #613267 - 04/19/02 10:35 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

"There's two sides of the brain. The logical/rational side, and the emotional/creative side."

This is a gross oversimplification, and illustrates the results of pop science in our culture. There is a bundle of nerves connecting both halves of the brain known as the 'corpus callosum.' Work which brought up the idea of right and left brain thinking was based on studies of people with severe epilepsy who had radical surgery to sever this nerve bundle so that nerve impulses during an epileptic seizure would not travel to the other half of the brain and involve it in the seizure as well. In a healthy, physically normal individual both halves of the brain are communicating constantly.

To link creative with emotional and place them to the opposite of logical/rational is an arbitrary distinction. A rabid dog is emotional but I've never known any description of one which would describe it as creative. One of the most creative people in history, Leonardo Da Vinci, was obviously rational and scientific in his approach. Some studies suggest that the most creative people may have larger corpus callosums and hence more communication between each hemisphere of the brain. This implies that creative people are more likely to recognize relationships between concepts that the average person may miss.

A person who bases his decisions and beliefs on reason has just as much emotion if not more than a person who bases his decisions and beliefs on emotion. What seperates the two is that the rational person recognizes that emotion is not a tool of cognition and though his emotions may be considered as factor in making decision, his emotions do not rule his decisions. Whereas emotional people treat their emotions as tools of cognition and often use them as the final arbitrator of their decisions.


Edited by Anonymous (04/19/02 10:42 PM)


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OfflineJPAtanat
member
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 101
Last seen: 14 years, 1 month
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: ]
    #613285 - 04/19/02 11:12 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

it may be that you and Swami are the result of pop science in our culture. You are building your fortress of logic brick by brick - a seemingly inpenetrable fortress. But dare to suggest that a brick in the foundation is not right, and you will do everything in your power to protect your building from crumbling. If a few bricks are missing then everything else is thrown out of whack. The result is an obstinate belief (or blind faith) in science and the scientific method. Any reliance on intuition vanishes. The senses and raw experience are not to be trusted. And you failed to mention something: Emotion and "rational thinking" ar the same thing in that they are both activity of the mind. The mind can lead us only so far, but at some point we have to be willing to step into the unknown, to experience reality directly instead of categorizing conceptualizing testing and verifying everything, we must allow our ideas and preconceptions to crumble and relax a little in uncertainy, because ultimately that is where we all dwell. Convincing yourself that you know is delusion, and this is true for everybody, skeptics "believers" whatever. You have made it clear that you believe in fallibility, great. But if things are always subject to your own rationalizations, you will never see clearly.


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OfflineJPAtanat
member
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 101
Last seen: 14 years, 1 month
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613291 - 04/19/02 11:27 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Ok, I will attempt to respond to the question now.
I think that Infidel's statement makes some sense. First, I think that the main thing here is that this term "believers" is really just referring to people that believe in things that are not scientifically proven. But scientific logic is not the only mode of thought, and it is not the only mode of rationalization (welcome to the spiritualiy/philosophy forum). I know few people who believe in something for no reason at all. Whether or not you consider their reasons to be "valid" and their logic to be "sound" can be argued forever, and that applies to science and logic as well. So whether or not someone is "rational" is simply a function of your own thinking and has no basis in fact.

Einstein said that there are two ways to look at the world: there are no miracles, or everything is a miracle.
I like that, and it seems to apply, so take it for what its worth....

Peace


Edited by JPAtanat (04/19/02 11:28 PM)


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InvisibleinfidelGOD
illusion

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 3,040
Loc: there
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: JPAtanat]
    #613311 - 04/20/02 12:12 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Why can't you accept that believers can be rational.

Einstein believed in God, was he an irrational man?

Swami, you're a rational man.
Don't you believe in some things that cannot be proven logically or with physical evidence? Do you believe in a soul? Do you believe in Love?

I believe in Love, and I'm not talking about any physical manifestation of our animal beings - such as pheromones or anything, I'm talking about something that can't be seen or proved. Does that make me an irrational being?

Why do you put logic above all else. Can't you see the benifits of suspending logic for a moment and letting your mind soar. (that's not irrational is it?)

Is our purpose in life to find a truth that can be proved? Because if it can be proved - logically understood by the limited human mind - then it will only exist in the limited confines of our logical minds. It can only be a limited truth that can be known to us by logic.
I'm sure that chimps would only pursue a truth that can be grasped by their minds (if they could think logically). And ants would only understand things that make sense to them as well. And do we human beings only believe those things that can be known to us by our "logic"?

We belivers are interested in a deeper truth, a truth that CAN'T be proved by human logic - only directly experienced. If the "Ultimate Truth" was simple enough to be understood logically by human beings, I would be quite disappointed...

Please don't lump us all with the palm readers and psychics and all that other new age crap. The whole reason we are all here is to pursue a higher truth beyond the pop - parasychology bullshit and beyond your precious logic. And if that makes us irrational beings than so be it.


Skeptic: "We just don't know"
Believer: "We think we know"

who advances humanity?


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Anonymous

Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: JPAtanat]
    #613312 - 04/20/02 12:13 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

"it may be that you and Swami are the result of pop science in our culture."
How so? Apparently, you don't understand me or the term 'pop,' which denotes 'popular.' What is popular is often times a fad, not often standing the test of time. Sometimes, what is popular may also prove to be timeless. Rational thought is hardly exemplified in the 'science' that often finds it's way onto the front page of the New York Times or as a topic of discussion on 'The Today Show.' These are items which are picked up in order to increase circulation or garner ratings. Sensationalism and political agendas are more important than scholarship in pop science.

"You are building your fortress of logic brick by brick - a seemingly inpenetrable fortress. But dare to suggest that a brick in the foundation is not right, and you will do everything in your power to protect your building from crumbling. If a few bricks are missing then everything else is thrown out of whack. The result is an obstinate belief (or blind faith) in science and the scientific method."
You know not of who you speak. I am not a scientific dogmatist, I have no blind faith in science. The scientific establishment is often as dogmatic as any religion. Your intuition has failed you.

"Any reliance on intuition vanishes. The senses and raw experience are not to be trusted."
Again, you are coming up with ideas based on your preconceived notions of how a person who tries to use the power of reason thinks. You must learn to be more open minded. All science and understanding of the universe begins with perception. However, when integrating new experiences and ideas, one should take into the account the context of how these were aquired and if they contradict one's understanding of the universe. If there is a contradiction, there are two possiblities. One, your perception is somehow incomplete or incorrect. Two, your current model of the universe is incorrect and needs adjustment.

If, while under the influence of 5 grams of p. cubensis, I were to have experienced meeting a space alien who told me he was Jesus Christ and he and his brethren were to be coming in 7 days to save the world I would take the ingestion of hallucinogens into account when attempting to integrate the experience into my understanding of the universe. To not do otherwise would be foolish.

"Emotion and "rational thinking" ar the same thing in that they are both activity of the mind."
Yes, like the colors for your 'desktop' of your computer and the function of the cpu are the same thing in that they both are part of your computer.

"The mind can lead us only so far, but at some point we have to be willing to step into the unknown, to experience reality directly instead of categorizing conceptualizing testing and verifying everything, we must allow our ideas and preconceptions to crumble and relax a little in uncertainy,"
When we step into the unknown we bring our minds with us, if we didn't, we would not be able to experience it. See my third point, above.

"But if things are always subject to your own rationalizations, you will never see clearly."
That's what Swami and I have been trying to tell you...


Edited by Anonymous (04/20/02 12:51 AM)


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Anonymous

Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: JPAtanat]
    #613325 - 04/20/02 12:33 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

JPAtanat... and InfidelGOD

WELCOME to the Spirituality and Philosophy board. I have been waiting for you both. It's about time you showed up.

:heart: :wink: :sun: :peace: :laugh:  


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OfflineJPAtanat
member
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 101
Last seen: 14 years, 1 month
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: infidelGOD]
    #613329 - 04/20/02 12:38 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

im not sure if you were replying to me or swami with you first line, but if oyu were responding to me, you misunderstood. I was suggesting that believers are just as rational as anyone else. Furthermore I agree with everything else you said. especially "can't you see the benefits of suspending logic..." and the search for truth that can only be directly experienced and not grasped by the human mind....
well said.


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OfflineJPAtanat
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Registered: 04/17/02
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Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: ]
    #613345 - 04/20/02 12:59 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

My intuition has not failed me because no intuition was involved in that analogy. it was quite cearly contrived (although i thought it was clever nonetheless).
"Again, you are coming up with ideas based on your preconceived notions of how a person who tries to use the power of reason thinks" -evolving
i find this statement very hypocritical.

Later in the same segment you mention putting things into context, however there is no context for existence. also the statement "...if they contradict one's understanding of the universe" isnt our understanding of the universe the very thing that is in question? trying to "fit things in" to our imposed "context" is the root of most of our misunderstanding of this world.
About perception. (working definition of perception for this entry: raw sensory experience + thinking, objectifying) Yes i believe that perceptions can be wrong. But subtract the thinking and there is no error possible. When I type into the kepyboard there is no question about the sensations it produces in my fingers. Questions only arise when you try to pigeon-hole what that experience is and reduce it to abstract meanings. A model of the universe? I'd sure like to see one sometime. but i think you are talking about context.
emotion and rational thikning are the same because they are both functions of our "model of the universe" we react to the world emotionally and rationaly on the same terms and these terms (as i have said) are whats to be questioned.
yes we bring our minds, and the rest of us. thinking is a tool to be used sparingly. not something to live our lives by.
"But if things are always subject to your own rationalizations, you will never see clearly" Yes you and Swami continue to tell us this, and continue to fail to recognize it yourselves.


Peace


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OfflineJPAtanat
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Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 101
Last seen: 14 years, 1 month
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: ]
    #613349 - 04/20/02 01:02 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

thank you shroomism.
its good to know that my comments are appreciated.

Peace


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InvisibleinfidelGOD
illusion

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 3,040
Loc: there
Believers ARE Rational Beings [Re: JPAtanat]
    #613350 - 04/20/02 01:03 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Thanks Shroomism,

and JPAtanat:
I was responding to Swami
- clicked the wrong "Reply" - :smile:
 


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OfflineskaMariaPastora
Utopiate
Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 443
Loc: MA
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: Swami]
    #613354 - 04/20/02 01:07 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Why has there been so much debate lately about the merits of strict rationalism vs. faith? Why does our community seem to be polarized between these two extremes? Polarizations just lead to tensions and animosity between the groups. I think we should all work towards accepting each other more. Its obvious that in any group of people there will be a variety of opinions. However, they are all scattered throughout the reason/faith coordinate system. There is no need to divide people into two piles.


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Anonymous

Re: Are Believers Rational Beings? [Re: skaMariaPastora]
    #613373 - 04/20/02 01:39 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

And thank you.. Ska
finally some words of wisdom

I'm all for the skeptic viewpoint, but when that skeptic viewpoint just keeps coming back and telling me/us that we don't make sense, fail to use logic, belief is for the weak, etc etc ad nasuem.. I tend to get very defensive and get blinded by something akin to frustration. I'm all for science, but I don't like science telling me what to believe, tearing apart my statements and pointing out the flaws in what they think is bad logic, and basically mocking. I am guilty of doing the same things, which I don't like.

This forum is for the open sharing of ideas where people should accept and be accepted. This is not a debating zone of Spirituality VS. Science. Everyone's viewpoint is valid, but it crosses the line when people start telling other people what they should think/do/believe in. I want to start seeing some peace in this place. If you think someone is using bad logic, or deluding themselves... let them delude themselves. People are allowed to have their own view on reality without having someone come and try and change it to fit their view of reality. If you don't like the way someone views reality, or interprets the world, that is your problem, not theirs. Leave the sarcastic comments or attacks on someone's character and/or thinking process to yourself.

I'm all for an equal balance of believer and skeptic. But not when it is believer VS skeptic. This is not a battle, this is a place where people come to share their ideas, beliefs, and philosophies. I don't like to see a very wise person like ChemicalBlue come here and share his revelations with us, only for them to be shot down by the first "rational person" who reads it.

So in conclusion, share your ideas. Do not attack people for sharing their thoughts, and above all, show everyone respect. I will do the same.


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