Jonathan H. B. Lobl

Agnostics, Atheists, Brights, Free Thinkers

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Gratefully, that means it is becoming less and less useful over time. Hopefully, it can become completely useless. And I keep seeing new reasons to be hopeful. Women can drive in Saudi Arabia now. Baby steps in the right direction, you know?

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17 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

 

I picked up an interesting line recently.  "An assertion that can be made without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence."

 

 

:thumbu:

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7 hours ago, mererdog said:

Gratefully, that means it is becoming less and less useful over time. Hopefully, it can become completely useless. And I keep seeing new reasons to be hopeful. Women can drive in Saudi Arabia now. Baby steps in the right direction, you know?

 

 

In Saudi Arabia, being an Atheist is punishable by death.  By the State.  Saudi National Law conflates Atheism with terrorism.  Think of all the Saudi funded madrasas, all over the world.  Remember that Mecca and Medina are both in Saudi Arabia.  The hearts of the Islamic world.   

 

Iran, the center of Shia Islam, also rewards Atheists with the death penalty.

 

Of course, the Islamic State .........

 

Your joy is premature.  

 

:mellow:

 

 

Edited by Jonathan H. B. Lobl

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49 minutes ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

Your joy is premature.  

I said I was hopeful, not joyful. Things are getting better. They are far from perfect, but they are better than they were and the trend lines are good.

Pessimism is the enemy of progress.

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4 hours ago, mererdog said:

I said I was hopeful, not joyful. Things are getting better. They are far from perfect, but they are better than they were and the trend lines are good.

Pessimism is the enemy of progress.

 

Hope may spring eternal, but I'm not seeing the progress.  

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5 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

 

Hope may spring eternal, but I'm not seeing the progress.  

 

 

Then you're not paying attantion (at the right "numbers, the "big" picture)...

 

"Religions" are (and have been) loosing ground every day (as they should, in my opinion).

 

A nice resource might be: "The Global Religious Landscape" report by the Pew Research Center.

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Dan56,
Please help me to understand the following: 
 " I would definitely disagree with that. "They" aren't my example. Even Jesus repeatedly warned about such characters (Matthew 7:15). Its kind of like saying that its alright to condemn all moderate Muslims because they can't speak independently of the radical ones." 

 

You and I were having a dialogue that has now come to a stand still. 

 

You position yourself as having been, at one time, a person who did not believe in God.   I assumed that meant as you transitioned over the bridge to a place that works better for you - that you would have retained some understanding towards other non-believers.  If you do retain any understanding of your previous situation you are choosing to irk people for reasons unknown to me. 

 

I see no possible beneficial outcome in doing so.   If you are in doubt because you do not remember what it was like when you were a non-believer - please allow me to refresh that in your mind.   When you were a non-believer would YOU have been able to understand what is the purpose of interjecting God into our conversation?  If you were once an atheist as you claim - please help me to understand WHAT is the purpose of that?  Why must God be invoked to make your free thinking point.  It appears to be at best a paradox.    It was between you and me up to that point.  Not me, you and Jesus.  Not me, you, Jesus and a book you believe is sacred (and I am guessing here that means you are right.... because it is sacred to you?)  How does that approach foster understanding?    I am seriously asking.   

 

It very much seems like an attempt to becloud the discussion.   There is no moral high ground to be gained as we do not share any common ground in regards to the book....or Jesus.  So how does that advance understanding?  Or afford respect?  

How is that relevant or helpful in any discussion between a believer and a non-believer? 

 

Thank you

 

von 

 

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, RevBogovac said:

 

 

Then you're not paying attantion (at the right "numbers, the "big" picture)...

 

"Religions" are (and have been) loosing ground every day (as they should, in my opinion).

 

A nice resource might be: "The Global Religious Landscape" report by the Pew Research Center.

 

 

Thank you.  It was interesting.  Other studies draw different conclusions.

 

:mellow:

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14 hours ago, VonNoble said:
 

You position yourself as having been, at one time, a person who did not believe in God.   I assumed that meant as you transitioned over the bridge to a place that works better for you - that you would have retained some understanding towards other non-believers.  If you do retain any understanding of your previous situation you are choosing to irk people for reasons unknown to me. 

 

I see no possible beneficial outcome in doing so.   If you are in doubt because you do not remember what it was like when you were a non-believer - please allow me to refresh that in your mind.   When you were a non-believer would YOU have been able to understand what is the purpose of interjecting God into our conversation?  If you were once an atheist as you claim - please help me to understand WHAT is the purpose of that?  Why must God be invoked to make your free thinking point.  It appears to be at best a paradox.    It was between you and me up to that point.  Not me, you and Jesus.  Not me, you, Jesus and a book you believe is sacred (and I am guessing here that means you are right.... because it is sacred to you?)  How does that approach foster understanding?    I am seriously asking.   

 

It very much seems like an attempt to becloud the discussion.   There is no moral high ground to be gained as we do not share any common ground in regards to the book....or Jesus.  So how does that advance understanding?  Or afford respect?  

How is that relevant or helpful in any discussion between a believer and a non-believer? 

 

Thank you

 

von

 

 

 

Quote

 

My initial post simply suggested that we are all 'free thinkers'. I did not invoke Jesus or any book in my comment, so I fail to see how my opinion was choosing to irk people off. The response to my post is what beclouded the issue, denigrated my belief, and condemned the idea that I could have an independent thought.  So I didn't muddle the discussion, I just responded to those who did. Trust me, I don't need to mention Jesus or the bible to irk Jonathan or Pete off, I'm fully aware of their complete hatred towards Christians. Understanding is a 2-way street, and so is respect. Read my post on page 5 of this thread, and then read the nasty responses. How does that approach foster understanding? My beliefs were made a topic, but it wasn't me who initially brought them up for discussion. I was fully aware of the topic prior to posting an opinion, and my post was not directed at Pete or a response to anyone else, nor was it about religion per se.

 

Edited by Dan56

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20 minutes ago, Dan56 said:

 

Trust me, I don't need to mention Jesus or the bible to irk Jonathan or Pete off, I'm fully aware of their complete hatred towards Christians.

 

 

 

You wonderful Free Thinker.  You are projecting.  

 

:mellow:

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5 hours ago, Dan56 said:

My initial post simply suggested that we are all 'free thinkers'. I did not invoke Jesus or any book in my comment, so I fail to see how my opinion was choosing to irk people off. The response to my post is what beclouded the issue, denigrated my belief, and condemned the idea that I could have an independent thought.  So I didn't muddle the discussion, I just responded to those who did. Trust me, I don't need to mention Jesus or the bible to irk Jonathan or Pete off, I'm fully aware of their complete hatred towards Christians. Understanding is a 2-way street, and so is respect. Read my post on page 5 of this thread, and then read the nasty responses. How does that approach foster understanding? My beliefs were made a topic, but it wasn't me who initially brought them up for discussion. I was fully aware of the topic prior to posting an opinion, and my post was not directed at Pete or a response to anyone else, nor was it about religion per se.

 

Hello Dan56, 

THANK YOU for keeping the dialogue open.   We have a long history of helping each other through the confusion. 

 

  I appreciate that you have always offered  respect to my non-belief  in the past - and  have publicly thanked you for that courtesy. 

 

It is both irksome and confusing however, especially knowing your background - that you would come to any discussion (EVER) between a non-believer and a believer using a bible quote, invoking the name of God or Christ because you are more aware than most that these things have no place on the bridge of understanding in the world of a non-believer.   I did hold you to a higher standard because I felt you would better understand the impact of doing such a thing. 

 

When anyone (not you specifically) comes towards me toting a Bible the very positioning of it implies I don't already know it (and frankly know it a darn sight better than many of them).   It feels as if the real message is: "me and God are here to tell you this cuz you obviously need tellin' sort of thing."    That may not be your intent when people do that - however,  that is the irksome to non-believers.  The assumption that we do not know what you are about to say.    Additionally, when a reference book (that we do not share in common) is used - it removes the thoughts presented away  from "free thinking" and towards indoctrinated regurgitation on the sliding scale of how we (all) present our thoughts.   I can tell you why I am for or against the Second Amendment to the Constitution without quoting it.  The quoting part is rarely necessary and is a waste of space and time most of the time. 

 

In a posting where I noted honestly that I had worked for years - in a heavily Christian area ...to help women who were abused.....and the abuse happened at more than one church,  by more than one pastor....your response was defending Christianity and yourself.  ( As in you don't condone it)  I already knew that.   That was not news.    I rather resented that you would think me capable of concluding that about you.   So it seemed to be a purposeful attempt to obfuscate the conversation.  If that was not the case - than I apologize for adding to the confusion.

 

It seemed, to me,  you were ignoring the victims.  I know you would not condone it or do it or ever say a thing other than it is wrong.   It seemed to me however by making the emphasis on Christianity you missed the boat.      It was never about you, me or the defense of Christianity.   I even interjected "bowling league" into my discussion to point out it doesn't matter the label so don't defend the label.....it is about the victim.   And sensitivity.  If someone in this Forum is hurting because the bowling league of XYZ faith hurt them I would suggest it is as simple as this:       1) the victim does not need to hear from anyone in XYZ bowling league - for any reason at this time        2) XYZ bowlling league people who did not perpetrate the hurtful action should not defend the league to anyone.....the first and foremost concern should always be the victim.   The survivor deserves the attention - not the perpetrator (and the innocent members of the posse.) .  All that can be sorted out by those who are helping the healing. 

 

When I am standing in the middle of the bridge to meet you half way and see what together we can do to foster healing we do so, as we have in the past as equals who care.   I have plenty of baggage from decades of fake Christians trying to bash me.   I have suffered plenty of unwarranted attacks from fake Christ-followers and I have yet to lump them into a group I hate or dislike.  I am tired of wave after wave of them viciously condemning me solely on the fact I am adamant in my acceptance of others (all others) as my equal.   It is exhaustive but I will always stand on the bridge.   I believe that the message of their God expects you to do no less.    In my case, it is a standard I choose for myself.  Either way, the important thing is we be willing to listen and learn from one another respecting the moral fiber shared. .. 

    

von

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On 10/4/2017 at 4:12 PM, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

 

I picked up an interesting line recently.  "An assertion that can be made without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence."

 

 

:rolleyes::thumbu::clap2:

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Jonathan H.B. Lobl,

 

I have been remiss in not noting this earlier.  

 I appreciate greatly you  have made yourself available to Pete.

That is the best of ULC  - and I am grateful to you. 

von

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1 hour ago, VonNoble said:

Jonathan H.B. Lobl,

 

I have been remiss in not noting this earlier.  

 I appreciate greatly you  have made yourself available to Pete.

That is the best of ULC  - and I am grateful to you. 

von

 

Thank you.  There are times when we all need a little kindness.  

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On 10/6/2017 at 4:39 AM, RevBogovac said:

 

 

Then you're not paying attantion (at the right "numbers, the "big" picture)...

 

"Religions" are (and have been) loosing ground every day (as they should, in my opinion).

 

A nice resource might be: "The Global Religious Landscape" report by the Pew Research Center.

 

I've had some time to think about this study.

 

First, None does not equate to Agnostic or Atheist.  Sometimes None only means lack of membership.

 

Second, I've been seeing similar polls all my life.  Others were around long before I came along.  So far, they have not proven accurate.

 

Third, I have seen other recent polls, that suggested, demographically, Atheism was on the decline.

 

Fourth, a recent poll that I saw insisted, that Islam was going to be the largest religious category within 40 years.  

 

As Mark Twain commented -- "Lies, damned lies and statistics." 

 

I go by my own perceptions.  For better or for worse, religion is not going anywhere.

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4 hours ago, VonNoble said:

 

Hello Dan56, 

THANK YOU for keeping the dialogue open.   We have a long history of helping each other through the confusion. 

 

   So it seemed to be a purposeful attempt to obfuscate the conversation.  If that was not the case - than I apologize for adding to the confusion.

 

It seemed, to me,  you were ignoring the victims.  I know you would not condone it or do it or ever say a thing other than it is wrong. 

    

von

 

Thanks... All I can say is that I had no intent to divert the conversation.. I had not read anything Pete wrote prior to my initial posting, so I was unaware that the discussion switched to "victims"..  I'm sorry he feels indoctrinated or pressured by his family, but I also know that I'm not the one to address his anger, guilt, and confusion.. I regret his bad experience, and its sad that he feels attacked by family or other Christians.. I can imagine being surrounded by Muslims who constantly spewed quotes from the Koran, or warnings of Allah's wrath against me. So on that level, I can certainly understand a nonbelievers distaste of the constant pressure to accept something they don't believe. And to be honest, I'd politely tell them to shut-up and go away too. But as previously stated, it was never my intent to discuss my faith on this thread, I was just making the case that a person who accepts any type of belief, does not necessary surrender the ability to form an independent thought. But obviously, that opinion did not sit well with some who are convinced I'm in some kind of mind-controlling cult. 

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4 hours ago, Dan56 said:

 

Thanks... All I can say is that I had no intent to divert the conversation.. I had not read anything Pete wrote prior to my initial posting, so I was unaware that the discussion switched to "victims"..  I'm sorry he feels indoctrinated or pressured by his family, but I also know that I'm not the one to address his anger, guilt, and confusion.. I regret his bad experience, and its sad that he feels attacked by family or other Christians.. I can imagine being surrounded by Muslims who constantly spewed quotes from the Koran, or warnings of Allah's wrath against me. So on that level, I can certainly understand a nonbelievers distaste of the constant pressure to accept something they don't believe. And to be honest, I'd politely tell them to shut-up and go away too. But as previously stated, it was never my intent to discuss my faith on this thread, I was just making the case that a person who accepts any type of belief, does not necessary surrender the ability to form an independent thought. But obviously, that opinion did not sit well with some who are convinced I'm in some kind of mind-controlling cult. 

I know we have had differences in the past.  I wanted to say that I respect your opinion, and certainly do not think it should be excluded from the thread simply because it's based on Atheism.  That would be a lot like NEO in the other thread saying non Christians shouldn't have responded.  I think this is an open forum, and we have been conducting it as such more lately.  And I will say, I do not see anything wrong with what you had to say, but that's simply my perspective.  Perhaps Pete had a different view, but that would be between you and him, I think.  

And I do not believe that those who hold beliefs of a religious nature fall into the category of unable to think.  

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4 hours ago, cuchulain said:

I know we have had differences in the past.  I wanted to say that I respect your opinion, and certainly do not think it should be excluded from the thread simply because it's based on Atheism.  That would be a lot like NEO in the other thread saying non Christians shouldn't have responded.  I think this is an open forum, and we have been conducting it as such more lately.  And I will say, I do not see anything wrong with what you had to say, but that's simply my perspective.  Perhaps Pete had a different view, but that would be between you and him, I think.  

And I do not believe that those who hold beliefs of a religious nature fall into the category of unable to think.  

 

Thanks... I'd confess to the notion that I am one dimensional in what I've chosen to believe, monotheism pretty much demands that, but I don't think it prevents a person from being a free thinker. Others might categorize it differently, but I think anyone is capable of considering various positions on any subject. Unfortunately, they are often labeled "closed-minded" for not yielding to another point of view.

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1 hour ago, Dan56 said:

 

Thanks... I'd confess to the notion that I am one dimensional in what I've chosen to believe, monotheism pretty much demands that, but I don't think it prevents a person from being a free thinker. Others might categorize it differently, but I think anyone is capable of considering various positions on any subject. Unfortunately, they are often labeled "closed-minded" for not yielding to another point of view.

;)...another two-way street conundrum....:blink:

von

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6 hours ago, cuchulain said:

And I do not believe that those who hold beliefs of a religious nature fall into the category of unable to think.  

 

I agree with you on this point.   I agree that people who hold belief in a religious faith are quite 

capable of thinking, of thinking for themselves, of choosing what is best for them.  Just like

those holding no religious affiliation.  The brain functions the same for all involved. 

 

I suspect (maybe) the emotions flair up for anyone when confronted by statements that 

whatever the choice made (to believe or not believe) is met:  YOU ARE WRONG. 

 

That hackles anyone probably, yes?

 

Those who believe protesting that non-believers "don't get it" ...and non-believers 

implying those who choose to believe "are incapable of independent thought."

 

Those things might prove to be a correct conclusion for other reasons but certainly not

 solely upon belief or lack of it. 

Good point.

 

von 

 

 

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