The psychology of atheists and theists

Discussion in 'Religion' started by James R, Aug 31, 2018.

  1. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    Jan, it wasn't meant as an attack on you, or an accusation. It was an observation on the current state of the church. Sarcastic as hell, but not personal.

    My apology.
     
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  3. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    That is so decent and you have my highest respect.

    Good on you.

    Alex
     
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  5. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    Man, it was really an honest mistake. We don't have the benefit of expression or tone of voice here.

    I'm embarrassed by the way it read, looking back.
     
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    This is a good start. Let me make some tentative suggestions.

    I'm not sure that these observations will apply to all theists. But we can make a start by applying them to Jan Ardena's particular brand of theism.

    Theists tend to believe that they have special access to "facts" that are "not of this world". There must be a reason why they have this belief. I'll have to think about it some more.

    Theists tend to believe that morality comes from God. The underlying psychology, I guess, is that theists feel a need for a "higher authority" when it comes to morality. They tend to distrust the human capacity to make and maintain moral frameworks.

    Taking the God hypothesis as a given, the theist typically dismisses without thought the possibility that he is wrong on the question of God's existence. When pressed, the tendency is to rationalise that a person who does not share the belief must be "in denial". There is a kind of block apparent in the theist's thinking, where the theist goes to great lengths to avoid examining the belief itself. This could be a self-protection mechanism.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  8. StrangerInAStrangeLand SubQuantum Mechanic Valued Senior Member

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    ///
    Without whiskey there is no peace.

    <>
     
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  9. StrangerInAStrangeLand SubQuantum Mechanic Valued Senior Member

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    ///
    Many of those turtles must be horribly tired by now.

    <>
     
  10. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    But they don't weigh anything. Maybe they're just bored?
     
  11. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

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    If God is "not of this world", why would that strike you as an claim that would require "extra thought" from your side?
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  12. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    People actually doing science say otherwise.
    The daily and routine considerations of science support their claim.

    Meanwhile, all of your claims about any aspect of science that anyone can check for themselves have been falsehoods, on this forum. Every single one.

    Plus, you have repeatedly posted elementary and obvious errors in your understanding of specific scientific findings and claims - such as Darwinian evolutionary theory, which on the evidence of your posting you do not understand.

    So that claim - without Jan's God there would be no science - appears to be more of a psychological indication than a statement about the world. It is evidence, on this thread, rather than a piece of a missing argument.
     
  13. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    And look out when they are: http://www.spunk.org/texts/prose/sp000212.txt
    The claim was: "Theists accept facts, whether they conform to their world, or not."

    It's obviously false, of course - in the case of the Abrahamic theists who post here, the demand that facts conform to their world before being accepted, and the amount of effort put into altering or re-framing facts to make them conform, is one of their most striking and obvious characteristics.

    But that does not illuminate the psychology, the why. And the question of why they make such claims is not necessarily easy to answer. Hence the thread.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  14. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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  15. Kittamaru Never cruel nor cowardly... Staff Member

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    Here's a thought, brought on by a quote:

    Person 1: So what you're saying that we need a God to be moral that a moral atheist is an impossibility?

    Person 2: No but with no God there's no real reason to be moral. I mean there's not even a a standard of what moral behavior is.

    An interesting thought, I found - who, or what, would define what is moral - are we supposed to (or, for that matter, are we able) to self-determine and self-police?
     
  16. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    If we aren't, no deity known can help.
    Although an imaginary one might, just as holding on to a toy with one hand helps a baby balance when they walk, or pretending to walk "toward" a distant star can help prevent walking in circles.
     
  17. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    I accept your apology Dr. Toad.

    jan.
     
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  18. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    What do you think?

    jan.
     
  19. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    Thank you. Again, it was never my intent to attack you that way.

    Just for the record, it isn't "doctor". The D and R are my initials, for Donovan Ready, and Toad is a nickname my friends laid on me when my mom called me a toad in front of them once..
     
  20. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    I think that is something you have to say.
    The only difference between an atheist, and a theist is that one does not accept or believe in God.

    Theists accept that everything emanates from God, including existence.
    To just single out ''morality'' makes no sense.
    People with good, basic, human intelligence, have good morals. At least in my experience.
    When that intelligence become tainted, or clouded, their morals also run the risk of becoming tainted, or clouded.

    ''Higher authority'' exists in every society. Even gangster society.
    ''Higher authority'' is a natural tenet of every society.
    Theists recognize that God is the highest authority.
    One does not feel a need for ''higher authority'' when it comes to anything.

    How have you reached this conclusion?

    The theist does not comprehend God as a separate entity. The atheist does, because the atheist has willfully forgotten God.

    The Personality of Godhead [God] is perfect and complete, and because He is completely perfect, all emanations from Him, such as this phenomenal world, are perfectly equipped as complete wholes. Whatever is produced of the Complete Whole is also complete in itself. Because He is the Complete Whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance.
    Everything animate or inanimate that is within the universe is controlled and owned by the Lord. One should therefore accept only those things necessary for himself, which are set aside as his quota, and one should not accept other things, knowing well to whom they belong
    .

    IsoPanishad - invocation - text 1

    The theist and the atheist do not comprehend God in the same way.

    It's not about whether or not you share my belief. There are many theists who don't share my belief, but they are theist because they accept and believer in God.
    You are in denial about God, period. You don't accept God (for whatever reason), and you have no reason for it.

    Why do I need to examine my belief in God?
    Because you don't accept God?

    jan.
     
  21. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    No probs. I just think that some accusations, can be a little too serious.

    Take the piss if you like, we are still on opposite sides of this debate (I know I will if the oppo comes up

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    jan.
     
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  22. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    Because there are many levels to it.

    You know who I'm referring to Alex.

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    Have you?
    Where?

    A perfect example of rejection, and denial.
    That's why I like you Alex. You make it easy.

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    jan.
     
  23. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    Why would they say otherwise?

    Erm, what claim?

    Really?

    Isn't is funny that when no one accepts Darwinian ideas, they are labelled as having no understanding of Darwinian ideas.
    Yet people who have no understanding of Darwinian ideas, but accept them, are never labelled.

    If God exists (for the purpose of argument), how could there be anything if God did not exist?

    jan.
     

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