Shadow Catboy posted:

Back in high school this one blond girl (who happened to have done modelling before. mrowr) said I talked like "a 60-year-old wise man." I just had a large vocabulary is all.

Anyway, one day I was just reading my well-worn copy of "Atheism: The Case Against God" in Starbucks. I was going to be teaching that philosophy class on Atheism so I needed to get some research done.

Well one kindly old Indian guy smiled at me and asked in a mild accent, "What? You don't like God?"

"Oh, uh, no. That's not it," and tried to explain that I have no personal qualms against God, but rather found the idea of his existence wholly unsupported, and in some cases, unsupportable. Of course, this discourse lasted only a few minutes until some tubby white guy ambled along and scowled at me.

He sat down without really asking for an invitation (which was fine enough) but then started criticizing me for being a naive, stupid young kid. Sure, I'm young, and sure, I'm inexperienced in the ways of the world, but when pressed I asked him if he could back up any of his assertions.

Academic discourse was pushed to the wayside and he pretty much just appealed to his broader world experience to tell me that I was wrong without specifying what the hell he was trying to demonstrate.

"Have you ever gone to Africa to do charity work there? Huh? Or worked in a soup kitchen? Lemme tell you, get some real experience, kid, before you try talking as if you know the world."

"Hey, look, I know I'm inexperienced with the world, but do you have any, y'know, evidence for your claims?"

"Blah blah blah! Why the hell do you keep asking 'Why? Why? Why?' Work in a damn soup kitchen someday and THEN you can start looking at the world. You can masturbate to your books and lectures all you want but you don't know jack shit."

He also went into a bit of detail about the religious practices and sacred places of areas he's visited. I have no idea what he was talking about or what that had to do with the topic of whether or not God exists, but I came to the conclusion that once I explore the world I'm not going to use that experience to lord over others.
Paradol Ex posted:
A very good question and I hope you aren't just trying to score a point in a discussion and really would like to hear an answer.

A belief in God is a form of insanity. It's just as crappy as any other trait that is an evolutionary dead-end or throw-back that is no longer needed in our advancement as a species.

The problem is that religion doesn't just affect the person who believes in such things. It retards the entire civilization. It's like an elementary school class where intelligent kids are forced to learn at the pace of the stupidest kid in the class. I was in reading groups like that when I was little. Some of the kids could have finished the book in the time it took for the stupidest kid to get through a page. And all the smarter kids had to sit there, stare into space, and bore themselves to tears as the teacher tried to get the dumbest kid through a page.

Which isn't an attack on the dumb kid. People learn at different speeds. But I also don't think we should idolize the stupidest kid in the class.

Religious people are holding all of humanity back because their "faith" actively hurts things like stem-cell research, abortion, artistic expression, and even the motherfucking space program. I don't want to be part of this species when an alien species arrives and at least half the world screams some form of "YOU'RE NOT CHRISTIAN-UHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!"

All of our resources should be aimed at immortality, which COULD be right around the corner. If we can regenerate cells, if we can stop aging, we could have astronomical lifespans. And yet this is hindered because so many humans think, "Well, gee, why live when I can go to Heaven!

Being a "star child" is so close to our ability it sometimes scares me at night, and yet we're being held back by base, stupid, easily disprovable literature.

I honestly don't know how I'd feel about a holocaust of religion. It would be terrible, but it might honestly save the rest of us.
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