Ever notice that the word for “conviction” applies both to certainty of beliefs, and what you get when you break the law and get caught? Convictions may not be all they’re cracked up to be! And what’s up with people being afraid of doubts? That’s like being afraid of a shadow. Where there’s light, there’s shadows, where there’s convictions there are doubts. So what! I think people are funny who need to be sure of everything all the time, need to think they’re good good good, and right right right. Silly people. What a hard life they lead.
certainty rocks? I’M sure every politician making horrific mistakes thought of that.
Inquisitiveness rocks, devotion sucks.
I like sex! Bye!
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The license plate on my car reads: DOUBT.
I can’t think of anything more important to the advancement of society than it.
Oddly enough the only genuine christians I’ve ever met are those on the liberal end of the spectrum, the ones who are prepared to doubt all dogma. These are the ones who I’ve always found in social work, always sticking up for the underdog.
I suspect they don’t want to waste time trying to convince others or themselves of the truth of dogma, but just get on with being good christians.
Compare that to the devout, who’s ranting and raving is probably mostly directed at some tiny nagging morsel of reason in their own heads.
Spot on my friend. The only true Christians are the ones who remember it’s more about Charity and Hope than Faith and can be usually heard saying,”I don’t care what you believe, can you give me a hand here”.
Many people were “certain” the Earth was flat and the Sun revolved around the Earth, even to the extent of persecuting those who “doubted” the apparent.
Doubt and uncertainty are vital survival mechanisms in H. Sapiens and other cognitive Eukaryotae. (They stay our hand when we are about to say or do imprudent things, like hastily posting daft remarks on websites or blowing yourself up on a bus.) They are also fundamental in coming to a greater understanding of the world and of others.
Socrates was only certain of his ignorance. This made him wiser than those about him.
I’m not sure all of these comments really hit the nail squarely on the head. ‘Certainty’ doesn’t (or at least shouldn’t) preclude the opportunity to change ones mind in the light of new information. As an atheist, I accept there is a degree of uncertainty inherent in all convictions, but consider the possibility of there actually being a god to be so slight that it can be comfortably disregarded; so I am ‘certain’ there is no god.
Should someone come up with good evidence to the contrary, well then I would be quite willing to reassess my view………… but that doesn’t seem to have happend in all of recorded history, so I think my position is safe for the time being
Alan, I take your position as well.
I like to compare it with that of the agnostics who say they can’t rule out a god, then live their lives as if there were no gods.
Two different labels with no effective difference that I can see. I kind of shake my head when I see agnostics and atheists debating which position is right.
I’m sorry, I can’t take seriously people who claim that there *might* be a god. It almost seems to me to make more sense to go ahead and be religious with a massive, but unabashed self-deception. This, at least, would allow you to think clearly in other areas of life.
If you can suggest that there *might* be a god, however, then there is nothing in the universe (or even not in the universe) that can be ruled out (for all practical purposes – I also agree with Alan). It just seems like a conflicted attempt to apply logic (I can’t see/touch god) without destroying wishful thinking (but it would be nice if he were out there!). I suspect my head would explode if I tried such a thing. Is there a rational defense of agnosticism? (I refer only to the “do not know” definition.)
It’s pretty easy to see that a sense of certainty doesn’t imply being correct. It’s really just an emotion about perceived knowledge.
The examples given above illustrate pretty well people being certain about some aspect that were in fact incorrect.
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m sorry, I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t take seriously people who claim that there *might* be a god.
I think the argument goes like this. Based on current scientific evidence, it seems very very unlikely that a personal god who cares about humans exists. However, science can’t claim with “absolute certainty” that god doesn’t exist (cause science can’t predict anything with “absolute certainty”). Obviously, this niche is waiting to be filled with extremely optimistic believers who, while agreeing that it’s very improbable for a personal god to exist, still hang on to the minuscule hope that she does, and science hasn’t yet found how she influences our lives (by liberally apply the “mysterious ways” clause here).
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I think Mo’s ‘monobrow’ (single eyebrow) is a stroke of genius. We read into it a variety of expressions.
FREKO you hit the nail right on the head! (sigh) I love it when spammers jump in on philosophical discussions.
that made me laugh more than the comic. Great comic by the way
Never trust a man whose eyebrows meet in the middle (according to my sister, that is).
I love that it ends up with them doubting. When one can be certain only of what is dogma and doctrine, truth about reality will often cause one to doubt.
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