This is awesome:
Nothing must be held sacred. Question everything. God is not great, Jesus is not your lord, you are not disciples of any charismatic prophet. You are all human beings who must make your way through your life by thinking and learning, and you have the job of advancing humanities’ knowledge by winnowing out the errors of past generations and finding deeper understanding of reality. You will not find wisdom in rituals and sacraments and dogma
10 thoughts on “PZ Myers is a great man”
There are freaks on the secular end. Probably as many as on the religious right, they just remain silent and do nothing. The fucked up religious folks are proactive…..which sort of connects to my atheisim theory….many are completely passive and just don’t eve pay attention.
Religious art is not religion and it is an important part of our history and culture and I personally don’t know any secularists who have a problem with religious art. What, we are going to stop teaching Bach? No fucking way. It is a fuzzy line, though, because religious people try to circumvent chuch-state separation all the time.
The notion that any particular interval such as minor 3rds and 7ths is evil is, of course, utterly insane.
I don’t think secular freaks want to erase culture they just want a strong barrier between Church and State, something our founding fathers thought was important for our longevity.
obviously my job dances a bit close to the ‘religion in schools’ argument. While religion does NOT belong in schools. The performance of sacred literature is of historical significance. The study of religious art is important. The ability to produce; Godspell, Man for All Seasons, The Best Christmas Pagaent Ever…etc… all of this must remain in the public schools…and yes you have secular wacko’s that want it removed.
The Religious freaks will shoot you in the name of God. (ie… see Jihad)
The Secular freaks (in my profession) will erase an entire culture.
Case’s in point from each side:
A mom wants to sue the school district for performing an instrumental arrangement of a Mozart “Ave Verum Corpus”
A hired music teacher refuses to teach Jazz, Pop, Contemporary music because the use of flat 3rds and 7ths is the devils work.
The problem “always” lies with Man and Mans interpretation of the world.
To quote “Tower of Power”- ….’a little knowledge is a dangerous thing’.
As you know, I don’t think that only believing things with evidence gives credibility, in any way, to things without evidence. I don’t consider myself a fanatic in any sense. The religious freaks are far more dangerous than the secular freaks.
But I don’t have a problem with people having faith or religion, just keep it out of our public schools and government.
Again, to argue that you “do not believe in something” gives credibility and acknowledgment to that “thing” that you do not believe in…..true atheists, IMHO, would be oblivious. Unless of course they have a political bent, or a desire to champion their own belief system. Or possibly a desire to; sell books, ideology,lecture circuit…etc…
I have no problem with atheists in general. I have no problem with religion in general.
I do have a problem with fanatics on either side. The argument seems to be where the lines are drawn on each side that divide the fanatics from each group.
To threaten to kill someone over a cracker, over abortion, over whatever is insane. Batshit insanity of epic proportion.
First of all, I should have elaborated: I am impressed with how PZ gave us some of the history of the origin of transubstantiation (the belief that the bread actually is the body of Christ as opposed to the view that it represents the body of Christ). Then he talked about the savagery that occurred using that very weird notion as a mechanism. Then he talks about why ancient and incorrect dogma like that is folly. It’s a great post and you should read the whole thing.
Jachin and Imagine are barking up similar trees and, forgive me fellows, I think it is ridiculous. Rejecting dogma is not dogma. Believing in only those things with evidence is not at all like believing scripture or your own made-up mysticism. They are vastly different.
I think religion and ritual have had utility for the human species and I think we all enjoy certain little rituals in our lives. But the notion of transubstantiation is provably wrong and the issue is very much symbolic of how ludicrous religion seems to atheists.
Atheism is a belief system.
so, how are you different?
Reason to believe #1
If there is no God why wouldn’t we just live like insects? Complete opportunists, anarchy, etc…..
and if we only have the value of an insect, why isnt’ traffic way worse?
er… no, “question everything” is not dogma… it may be a logical contradiction, but it is not dogma… dogma sounds like this: “body of christ”… seriously, it’s like saying atheism is a religion or darwinism is a faith… this is just playing with language and a ploy to help people with unreasoned beliefs feel better about themselves… i write about this in my blog a bit (truthisawoman.wordpress.com)…
but in any case, being an atheist, from the inside, is like being a religious person from the inside… just without the superstition…
“You will not find wisdom in rituals and sacraments and dogma”.
For some reason that sounds like a dogma to me, the sort of thing that should be questioned when “questioning everything”.
Speaking of that “question everything” is just the sort of thing that may qualify as a dogma… maybe even a ritual.
I realize in the context of the quote he’s referring to some particular religions. Still, I think this points to a bigger philosophical and practical issue I rarely see atheists deal with very well*. Every now and then we have to take a break from our endless questioning to live life. Isn’t there value in accepting something as true so one can live as though it is true and experience the consequences? Things are not always the clearest from the outside. Sometimes to really understand you have to get inside. Sometimes that means accepting “rituals and sacraments and dogma”.
* In fairness I have not really looked “high and low”