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Thread: Atheism.

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    Atheism.

    I was brought up under the umbrella of the Protestant church, and my parents instilled in me the important differences between right and wrong.

    I served in the armed forces, where Padres aligned to the various faiths were attached to all major units, and access to a padre of a particular faith was available to individuals who expressed a need for guidance in these matters.

    If anything, my military service experiences left me with the feeling that the application of extreme violence did not resolve the sometimes bitter differences between adversaries. While I continue to support the remembrance act for those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, I am probably better attuned to pacifism.

    The major organized religions have much in common, when it comes to their insistence on the definition of right and wrong. Indeed, the Bible and the Koran go to considerable lengths to guide their followers in appropriate ways to live their lives.

    For the purpose of my own philosophy, it comes down to just a few basic rules that most can agree on.
    Do not Kill
    Do not steal
    Always try to do the right thing, even when no one is watching. (That’s just integrity)
    Try you very best to be a good and kind person.

    All the rest of the religious rules are just window dressing, used to exercise social and political control over their followers.

    I try to respect the rights of others to choose which faith they wish to follow, even if I personally believe a different set of guidelines.
    Finally, I have to say that I do believe In karma. If you choose to adopt a lifestyle of being a good, kind person, those acts of goodness or kindness will be repaid one day.
    Or maybe not.

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    Thailand Expat Saint Willy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    Do not Kill
    But what if killing one person saves 10?

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    Charlie has seen the light.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    All the rest of the religious rules are just window dressing, used to exercise social and political control over their followers.
    ...indeed, Abrahamic religions even include the creation of "the other", i.e., folks it is necessary to demonize and shun...and the need to give their god cash to help with living expenses...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    If you choose to adopt a lifestyle of being a good, kind person, those acts of goodness or kindness will be repaid one day.
    Wouldn't that be nice

    Especially if we could get repaid in this life
    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    Or maybe not.
    Yeah, the likes of KW will always be around


    Very good post btw

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRealKW View Post
    But what if killing one person saves 10?
    A good question Willy. I doubt if any recruit joined the forces in order to kill another human being, but it was a necessary part of training to learn a range of skills required to defend yourself and your comrades from dangers in battle situations. To my knowledge, I have not been in a position to do that, but I have trained others to do the same.
    I do know that certain individuals did join for that reason, and were given the tools, and the basic rules of engagement to make that possible.
    Such persons are usually members of the so called teeth arms or special forces, almost always trained and tested to overcome such encounters and come out of it alive.
    I claim no such opportunities personally, but even as ‘ordinary forces’ I take responsibility for having trained others to kill.
    In the end it comes down to one person making a reasoned judgement to deploy that skill, and another to follow those orders. It very rarely becomes an individual choice, to take a life. The ethos of the services inculcates a duty to your friends, to protect them before yourself, and instils the belief that others are psychologically prepared to do the same.
    The army motto during my service was, ‘In peace we train for war’. This creates an unshakable bond between individuals and teams. We justify those choices based on an understanding of the order to shoot, and the method taught is shoot to kill. Those responsible for such orders, throughout the chain of command, must have to rationalize personally it in the end.
    Given that I spent my whole career preparing my colleagues to make, and execute those decisions, my rationale now is that, while we remain capable of extreme violence, we should consider that option, only in cases of extreme provocation, and understand the consequences of such action.
    In this instance, it is unusual for such individual decisions to made for anything other than altruistic reasons. Kill or be killed.

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    Thailand Expat Saint Willy's Avatar
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    Good arguments.

    In ethics the classic question is the trolley switch question. link

    A dozen more Trolley questions. link

    There is no exact or correct answer to these problems, they are thought experiment designed to elicit and illuminate your ethical thinking.

    And hints to the fact that although I agree with you in your statement below, it's actually too simple.

    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    For the purpose of my own philosophy, it comes down to just a few basic rules that most can agree on.
    Do not Kill
    For example,
    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    Do not steal
    - but what if you stole from a thief? what if you stole food only to feed a starving child? Again, do not steal is a pretty good start, but can it be that absolute, can it be that reducted?

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    I believe my philosophy is as simple as it can be. It leaves ethics and detail to individual interpretation. Why complicate such a basic idea?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    Why complicate such a basic idea?
    ...because the basic idea lends itself to complication in real life...

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    Quote Originally Posted by tomcat View Post
    ...because the basic idea lends itself to complication in real life...
    The examples quoted in KWs link were a bit highbrow.

    Most of us never get that far. It’s a philosophy for the many, not the few. remember that philosophy poses questions that might never be answered. Religion is a philosophy that can never be questioned.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    A good question Willy. I doubt if any recruit joined the forces in order to kill another human being, but it was a necessary part of training to learn a range of skills required to defend yourself and your comrades from dangers in battle situations. To my knowledge, I have not been in a position to do that, but I have trained others to do the same.
    I do know that certain individuals did join for that reason, and were given the tools, and the basic rules of engagement to make that possible.
    Such persons are usually members of the so called teeth arms or special forces, almost always trained and tested to overcome such encounters and come out of it alive.
    I claim no such opportunities personally, but even as ‘ordinary forces’ I take responsibility for having trained others to kill.
    In the end it comes down to one person making a reasoned judgement to deploy that skill, and another to follow those orders. It very rarely becomes an individual choice, to take a life. The ethos of the services inculcates a duty to your friends, to protect them before yourself, and instils the belief that others are psychologically prepared to do the same.
    The army motto during my service was, ‘In peace we train for war’. This creates an unshakable bond between individuals and teams. We justify those choices based on an understanding of the order to shoot, and the method taught is shoot to kill. Those responsible for such orders, throughout the chain of command, must have to rationalize personally it in the end.
    Given that I spent my whole career preparing my colleagues to make, and execute those decisions, my rationale now is that, while we remain capable of extreme violence, we should consider that option, only in cases of extreme provocation, and understand the consequences of such action.
    In this instance, it is unusual for such individual decisions to made for anything other than altruistic reasons. Kill or be killed.
    What a pathetic hodgepodge by an old geriatric fool. At least learn to space out your sentences, FFS. It is dreadful enough that a bozo like you must be tolerated in the F1 thread.

    But this is just to much.

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    What's this bollocks about "Thou Shalt Not Kill", the bible is full of fuckers merrily smiting away.

    God was the worst fucking smiter of the lot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    The examples quoted in KWs link were a bit highbrow.
    Not often my examples get blamed for being highbrow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    Religion is a philosophy that can never be questioned.
    We are evolved animals and our brains contain an evolved spirituality module.

    It was selected by nature since it helped with tribal binding among other things.

    Religion is just the cultural practise of tickling your spirituality module and is harmless fun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Looper View Post
    We are evolved animals and our brains contain an evolved spirituality module.

    It was selected by nature since it helped with tribal binding among other things.

    Religion is just the cultural practise of tickling your spirituality module and is harmless fun.
    Sure.

    Thats why I’m an atheist.

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    Religion has been with the human race since man could question his (or her) existence. It will still be here long after the word atheist disapears from the language. It is in the nature of human beings to try to find some meaning to their existence. For some they are just here to replicate DNA and their life has little meaning beyond that. For others existence has a deeper spiritual meaning. "Finding God" is a spritual journey. It has been used by some to increase their power and exclude others. Peoples own tribalist beliefs and prejudice can and will do this and has done so throughout history. Looking down on different racial groups as inferior to ones own is older than the bible. It does not require a religion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Cow View Post
    Religion has been with the human race since man could question his (or her) existence. It will still be here long after the word atheist disapears from the language. It is in the nature of human beings to try to find some meaning to their existence. For some they are just here to replicate DNA and their life has little meaning beyond that. For others existence has a deeper spiritual meaning. "Finding God" is a spritual journey. It has been used by some to increase their power and exclude others. Peoples own tribalist beliefs and prejudice can and will do this and has done so throughout history. Looking down on different racial groups as inferior to ones own is older than the bible. It does not require a religion.
    The question had been asked "What came first the chicken or the egg" ?
    The answer is obvious to anyone who knows anything about evolution .
    The egg!
    The chickens is simply the eggs idea of making another egg.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Cow View Post
    Looking down on different racial groups as inferior to ones own is older than the bible. It does not require a religion.
    ...and yet Abraham thought it was essential to his particular beliefs...if anybody ever needed a slap, it's Abe...

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    Quote Originally Posted by tomcat View Post
    ...and yet Abraham thought it was essential to his particular beliefs...if anybody ever needed a slap, it's Abe...
    The first recorded incident of child abuse in history.
    From then on, Abe junior slept with one eye open .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    From then on, Abe junior slept with one eye open .
    ...probably his remaining eye...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    The first recorded incident of child abuse in history.
    From then on, Abe junior slept with one eye open .
    So he became gay?

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    Quote Originally Posted by lom View Post
    So he became gay?
    ...easy to reach that conclusion: child abuse starts with "c" and that rhymes with "p" and that stands for p**erasty...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Cow View Post
    Religion has been with the human race since man could question his (or her) existence. It will still be here long after the word atheist disapears from the language. It is in the nature of human beings to try to find some meaning to their existence. For some they are just here to replicate DNA and their life has little meaning beyond that. For others existence has a deeper spiritual meaning. "Finding God" is a spritual journey. It has been used by some to increase their power and exclude others. Peoples own tribalist beliefs and prejudice can and will do this and has done so throughout history. Looking down on different racial groups as inferior to ones own is older than the bible. It does not require a religion.
    Science is killing it. Not deliberately of course. Science is easier to teach because it does not require the same level of faith, required by religious teachings, and the associated dogma.

    I do not deny others the opportunity to follow any religion of their choice, because if they persist, I know that one day, such flawed belief systems will be replaced by the reality of scientific knowledge.

    Yes it might take a few centuries, but I believe it is inevitable.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    it might take a few centuries, but I believe it is inevitable.
    Amen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Switch View Post
    I know that one day, such flawed belief systems will be replaced by the reality of scientific knowledge.
    ...if only there were a way to speed things up to avoid centuries of continuing ignorance...

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