An agnostic burner’s point of view

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by cowboyangel » Wed Dec 21, 2011 5:10 pm

wh..sh wrote:Ok, that IS it! I want whatever JStep is smoking :)

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The Aparokshanubhuti (Sanskrit: अपरोक्षानुभूतिः) is a famous work attributed to Adi Shankara. It is a popular introductory work that expounds Advaita Vedanta philosophy. It describes a method that seekers can follow to directly experience the essential truth of one's one nature. Thus, the work is literally titled Aparokshanubhuti, or Direct Experience. Swami Vimuktananda titles his translation Self-Realization.[1]


This is ancient empiricism. Why get hung up on belief or guesswork when the opportunity to know something directly exists? Direct knowledge of something is definitive.
The possibility that direct knowledge exists is worthy of inquiry, no?
"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believe is false."- William Casey, CIA Director 1981

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:07 pm

Bob wrote:With all due respect, your dic is severely abridged. Atheism was coined half a millennium ago by religious authorities to describe godlessness or ungodliness, and later to describe *disbelief*, rather than the more specific belief that God does not exist. Only recently has its usage become as doctrinaire as you assume, but it still doesn't preclude simply not caring about the question of God.
Whether or not you care about the question doesn't change the answer or the definitions of the words. My use of the word as it is defined is not recent that I know of, but I'm not a linguist. The OED definition is "a person who does not believe in the existence of God or gods:" I believe the OED is considered the authority on word definitions.

I've been on your side of the argument, I was wrong.

And stop looking at my dic! :P
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:20 pm

thisisthatwhichis wrote:
JStep wrote:Agnosticism in no way states an equivalence of merit between the position that something for which there is no evidence still exists despite all evidence and logical thought vs the position that the world is rationally explained by the evidence we have without need to create the existence of something that we have no evidence for to answer questions we have that we simply haven't discovered the answer to yet. (How's that for a run-on sentence!)

I vote we put this as a *sticky* in the First Class Gibberish thread.........

That was fantastic, Jstep!!!!..... :D
heh. i know you're poking but that is a long run on sentence, it was just hard to succinctly state the 2 relative positions in only a few words. Maybe I'll try a diagram next time!

How about:

Rational world based on evidence > irrational world based on belief
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by oneeyeddick » Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:02 pm

JStep wrote: The OED definition is "a person who does not believe in the existence of God or gods:" I believe the OED is considered the authority on word definitions.
Flattery will get you nowhere in this debate.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by wh..sh » Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:57 pm

JStep wrote:Rational world based on evidence > irrational world based on belief
you mean "according to you, rational world based on evidence > irrational world based on belief", right?
Seems like you categorized anything that's not based on evidence and that's not rational. Wonder why most people read historic, sci, fantasy fictions when they should clearly be reading science books and thesis papers.

"Imagination is better than knowledge" - Albert Einstein
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by Ugly Dougly » Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:57 pm

Can I be a Whothefuckknowstic?

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:25 pm

oneeyeddick wrote:
JStep wrote: The OED definition is "a person who does not believe in the existence of God or gods:" I believe the OED is considered the authority on word definitions.
Flattery will get you nowhere in this debate.
...I'm ashamed to admit that this didn't even occur to me at the time. lol
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:36 pm

wh..sh wrote:
JStep wrote:Rational world based on evidence > irrational world based on belief
you mean "according to you, rational world based on evidence > irrational world based on belief", right?
Seems like you categorized anything that's not based on evidence and that's not rational. Wonder why most people read historic, sci, fantasy fictions when they should clearly be reading science books and thesis papers.

"Imagination is better than knowledge" - Albert Einstein
Ok, that just makes no sense in the context of this conversation.

To be more precise for you; Yes, in analyzing the 2 positions and looking to find out which one is a better explanation for the world we find ourselves in, the position that makes sense, answers questions and is backed up by evidence is better than the one that doesn't make sense, creates more questions and paradoxes than answers and is absolutely devoid of any evidence. This is not an opinion, it is simply a statement of the quality of these two approaches to life, philosophy, and thought.

Your last sentence literally makes no sense whatsoever. We're not talking about the subjective value of reading fiction vs reading for learning. We're talking about the use (and mis-use) of the words atheist and agnostic, what those words actually mean and what the implication of their mis-use creates.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:37 pm

Ugly Dougly wrote:Can I be a Whothefuckknowstic?
Yes, and it's pronounced atheist. :)
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by ibdave » Thu Dec 22, 2011 12:40 am

thisisthatwhichis wrote:
JStep wrote:Agnosticism in no way states an equivalence of merit between the position that something for which there is no evidence still exists despite all evidence and logical thought vs the position that the world is rationally explained by the evidence we have without need to create the existence of something that we have no evidence for to answer questions we have that we simply haven't discovered the answer to yet. (How's that for a run-on sentence!)

I vote we put this as a *sticky* in the First Class Gibberish thread.........

That was fantastic, Jstep!!!!..... :D
Titwi, (hi BTW)(Missed you this year),
ok then will you fucking explain this?
my head is spinning now that you smartass have tossed all this into the mix..
For me I have been cool with this statement.. "I don't believe in a god, ect and the bible is just a storybook." (short but to the point) :shock:
so thanks for the debate, food for thoughts for sure.. 8) 8) 8)
I was Born OK the 1st Time....

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by AntiM » Thu Dec 22, 2011 3:16 am

You can't fool me, it is tiny teapots all the way down!

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by Simon of the Playa » Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:36 am

"but sir, i am a PROSTITUTE!"


"oh thank god! i thought for a second you said you were a protestant"....
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by ygmir » Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:35 am

JStep wrote:
oneeyeddick wrote:
JStep wrote: The OED definition is "a person who does not believe in the existence of God or gods:" I believe the OED is considered the authority on word definitions.
Flattery will get you nowhere in this debate.
...I'm ashamed to admit that this didn't even occur to me at the time. lol
so, the kneepads are something you wear for work? :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by ygmir » Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:38 am

if we assume, nothing can actually be proven 100% (quantum physics, Schrodinger, Xeno, etc), then might I suggest "faith" may be the only thing, that is real? Because, it requires no proof.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:50 am

ygmir wrote: so, the kneepads are something you wear for work? :lol: :lol: :lol:
And a copy of the OED in my backpack, baby!
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by Bob » Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:53 am

Which edition?
Amazing desert structures & stuff: http://sites.google.com/site/potatotrap/

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by ibdave » Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:53 am

so, how does "Godless" fit into all this.. :?:
I was Born OK the 1st Time....

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by unjonharley » Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:59 am

ibdave wrote:so, how does "Godless" fit into all this.. :?:


If I read this right... It fucking funny..ROTF..

So Bob, I and company are godless (stuffy english accent) bastards :?:
Last edited by unjonharley on Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by theCryptofishist » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:01 am

wh..sh wrote:Wonder why most people read historic, sci, fantasy fictions when they should clearly be reading science books and thesis papers.

"Imagination is better than knowledge" - Albert Einstein
This has to be a joke.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by theCryptofishist » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:03 am

ygmir wrote:if we assume, nothing can actually be proven 100% (quantum physics, Schrodinger, Xeno, etc), then might I suggest "faith" may be the only thing, that is real? Because, it requires no proof.
I think you're comparing apples and roller skates here.
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Man, no wonder they always win....." Lonesomebri

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:12 am

Bob wrote:Which edition?
I'm kidding, I don't have a hard copy, I reference the online edition.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by Bob » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:13 am

Which online edition? There are at least two.
Last edited by Bob on Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:13 am

ibdave wrote:so, how does "Godless" fit into all this.. :?:
I haven't met Godless yet.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:21 am

Bob wrote:Which online edition? There are at least two.
I believe they're on OED2 at this point. I use the Oxford University Press one cause I'm too poor to subscribe to the OED.com version. Ok not poor really, but not interested in paying $295 for time-lines and other add-ons I'm probably not going to use.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by ygmir » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:26 am

theCryptofishist wrote:
ygmir wrote:if we assume, nothing can actually be proven 100% (quantum physics, Schrodinger, Xeno, etc), then might I suggest "faith" may be the only thing, that is real? Because, it requires no proof.
I think you're comparing apples and roller skates here.
well, in my little mind, it flows....................
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by wh..sh » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:28 am

I hate my "I started to write but got too lazy half way through" posts! :x

Nevermind... since this topic isn't subjective at all :roll: , I shall put it this way and peace out.
I just don't understand why it's so important to box ourselves into one of these categories. I truly don't see any point in it.
From an atheist point of you, Bible might be storybook and less of an intriguing fiction. who cares! I don't care if people have faith in Bible or in Star Wars.

My friend just sent me a picture of her star wars good figurine vs evil figurine battefield collection
In my world there's only legible and more legible.

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by wh..sh » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:29 am

ygmir wrote:
theCryptofishist wrote:
ygmir wrote:if we assume, nothing can actually be proven 100% (quantum physics, Schrodinger, Xeno, etc), then might I suggest "faith" may be the only thing, that is real? Because, it requires no proof.
I think you're comparing apples and roller skates here.
well, in my little mind, it flows....................
And that's all that matters
In my world there's only legible and more legible.

-Bob

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by JStep » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:50 am

wh..sh wrote:I hate my "I started to write but got too lazy half way through" posts! :x

Nevermind... since this topic isn't subjective at all :roll: , I shall put it this way and peace out.
I just don't understand why it's so important to box ourselves into one of these categories. I truly don't see any point in it.
From an atheist point of you, Bible might be storybook and less of an intriguing fiction. who cares! I don't care if people have faith in Bible or in Star Wars.
Well... There are parts of the conversation that are subjective, like where I venture my opinion as to why many people wish to avoid the atheist title. But the crux of the conversation hinges on what the word atheist means and whether or not that encompasses agnostics, which is not really subjective at all.

As for boxing ourselves in, that's dependent on your point of view. If you use the literal meaning of the word atheist, it's not a boxed in label at all. Lack of belief in a god or gods is a whole lot of people. In fact, everyone is born an atheist and has to be indoctrinated later in life to consider the possibility of the existence of something that has no evidence, whether they end up believing it or not.

I think I indirectly touched on this idea when i mentioned something like "I don't believe in leprechauns, but I'm not an aleprechaunist"; In other words atheist is one of the few words that really shouldn't exist because it defines someone as to what they do NOT do or believe. It's only because the default condition for a human is/was considered to be a believer that such a word ever came into existence to define the departure from the norm. I can't even think of any words that parallel this very well. I guess you could think of it like how we now have a word called "flat-earther" for people who maintain that the Earth is flat, the moon landings and NASA photos are a hoax, etc. At one point maybe we had a word for the rare few people that suspected the Earth is actually round and the sun went around it, not the other way around. We don't refer to these people as Round-earthers or aflateartherists.
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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by TomServo » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:53 am

I’m an agnostic. I believe It is impossible to prove or disprove the existence of a god. And that the world’s attempts to do so, throughout history, have resulted in war, hatred and misunderstandings. I am not a “fence sitter.” Agnosticism is not a religion. I’ve analyzed both sides of the debate, and came to the conclusion that it’s a futile exercise, trying to justify or explain a position you really know nothing about. The set up...the explanation of my beliefs and how it ties into...

This is not to say, that I do not believe in spirituality. That, I can feel. Or, at least have the illusion of feeling. It would be nice to know for certain, that a loving god exists. That he or she is controlling the universe, and is responsible for all the fucked up shit that happens. but faith or denial is all most people have to go on, And I don’t like either word. I have had a spiritual awakening, I think…and it was at Burning man.this is the "however" part..

My first year at burning man, I sat on top of the hay bales, below the man. It may have been dehydration, or it may have just been the beer…but, I had an overwhelming sense of comfort and purpose. That something larger than myself was watching over me…probably because a 50 foot wooden man was standing over me. I’ve often felt, since then, that the collective conscious of black rock city is that larger force. me, trying to analyze that spiritual experience and the conclusion I'm happy with

So, I’ll end this little speech with an agnostic prayer…I've read a couple "agnostic prayers" and decided to make my own...even if I AM talking to myself

Whoever…you know who I’m talking about, if you do exist. Please don’t spill the beans. Keep us guessing, in our minds…but don’t allow us to be obsessed with it. Because there’s a lot of cool shit in life, for us to discover… and…no offense, you are just a distraction.this part...is my prayer. Their are many like it...but this one is mine!And, my distraction point...was well illustrated in this thread
anything worth doing is worth overdoing..

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Re: An agnostic burner’s point of view

Post by theCryptofishist » Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:10 am

ygmir wrote:
theCryptofishist wrote:
ygmir wrote:if we assume, nothing can actually be proven 100% (quantum physics, Schrodinger, Xeno, etc), then might I suggest "faith" may be the only thing, that is real? Because, it requires no proof.
I think you're comparing apples and roller skates here.
well, in my little mind, it flows....................
Sorry, I have a lot of trouble with the kind of reductionist thinking that some on the religist right indulge in, i.e. the "science is just another belief." Science is not perfect and scientists don't always follow the scientific method and certainly there are underlying beliefs that give scientists blind spots. But the ways that science is proven and not proven and can and cannot be proven are very different than the ways than the objects of faith are proven or not proven.
PET scans of brains believing in gods and of brains beliving in evolution (for instance) may look the same (or thye may not, I've never read about this being done, and I"m not sure how it could be) but that does not mean that they are equivelent in the real world. Hence the definition: Science is that when you stop beliving in it still remains true.
I find the deep anti-intellectualism and anti-science bias in this country to be frightening and regressive. You can expect that I will jump on statements that seem to support that world view.
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