Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The church has pretty much failed to do what it claimed, which is to provide shelter and comfort to people in need. Instead they get indoctrinated. There's not much comfort in that unless you're really desperate, it's more like a community of idiots w/ patronizing jailers. The whole thrust of the church is business and indoctrination with fixed forms. "Of course we're open to all suggestions, but if you want salvation, ..."

What exactly is salvation? it's a state of "grace" (bliss, happiness, contentment, satisfaction, having confidence in the future, etc.) It's achievable by "faith" that is, believing something is predominantly important (even if it isn't), such as the church community and belief system. That's not so rare, I mean that's the final hook offered by any religion, call it what you like.

Here's "Bill's Religious Method For Getting Shed Of Your Load Of Earthly Care" (shortened to BRMFGSOYLOEC):
Stay focused on anything which doesn't require another person's input, till it becomes more important than anything else, such as running from a forest fire. The forest fire isn't necessary to achieve the result, it's just an example of the ideal commitment. When your thoughts wander, just redirect them to the original point. Sounds Buddhist doesn't it? It is, and BRMFGSOYLOEC gives you the Cosmic Power to ignore bullshit, however it's not as easy as letting someone feed you a special piece of cracker & tell you you're saved, but it is more convincing. You aren't required to offend anyone by being a missionary, and your sister won't get stoned to death for going outdoors without a mask.

The coming evangelical collapse (Yahoo news)
Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds (USA today). This is too bad really, but a million smiling hypocrites vs instant public scrutiny, I guess it's inevitable.

Dear fellow atheists. Lets piss off the world and claim the '@' sign as the official sign of atheism. (self.atheism). It'll never happen.

10 Most Revealing Psych Experiments

Univ. Toronto Researchers find brain differences between believers and non-believers (eurekalert), 1. Stroop effect 2. Stroop test

Pride: The 7th Sin

Given the differences in cultures, the Large Hadron Collider is basically looking for the same thing that Thomas Aquinas defined as god: 5 arguments for the existence of god the Quinquae viae. The main difference is in how it's represented. It's the writers opinion that neither one is practical for achieving it's purpose, but the 5 arguments define the problem and the LH Collider is a serious effort in that direction.

One of the things that bugs me about the church is the ambiguity of terms and methods between sects. If one of them had more credibility than another, maybe word would get out. Instead it's a race to scrape the bottom for something new. Like programming commands, calling it logic doesn't make it logical. You'd think something as personal and inherent as ones relationship w/ the world would have a default form, where a priest/shrink interpreter isn't mandantory. Everybody has teachers but it gets so formalized, like Tenure, Church and the Crips all require commitment and fidelity in exchange for a sense of security. For professional advancement, members learn a more and more specialized perspective, till the they only think in those terms. When your only tool is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. A self limiting philosophy.

The Named is the mother of all things. Language shapes perception it takes 200 milliseconds between when an observation occurs and when it's internalized verbal description is formed. During those 200 milliseconds, the "meaning" is fluid. it could be anything.

15 quotes from famous Atheists w/ comments

Dr Jack Horner (Paleontologist): "Religion is about faith, not evidence. Comparing science and religion isn't like comparing apples and oranges—it's more like apples and sewing machines." Horner wants to retro-engineer a (small) dinosaur from a chicken, partly for the scientific knowledge to be gained, and partly because he likes dinosaurs.

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