How to Deal With Those Angry, High Theists

Thank Chance for Atheos.  Without it, those Gentle Gnus would not know how to handle your typical theist.  😉

Maybe the reason Atheos isn’t popular is because someone forgot to calibrate it with reality.

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23 Responses to How to Deal With Those Angry, High Theists

  1. Billy Squibs says:

    I dunno. It looks like Boghossian has us figured out. I was just about to go out and bash me some atheists.

    Take that, best friend *Pow*.
    Feel the wrath of God’s justice, co-workers *Karate chop*.

  2. Kevin says:

    Hmm…you seem awful sober for a Christian there, Billy.

  3. Billy Squibs says:

    I enjoy brief moments of lucidity between whiskey bottles.

  4. Dhay says:

    I wondered in the earlier “Street Epistemologists Get Their Needed Crutch” thread whether the App has been designed (or will in practice function) as not only a training tool, a tool demonstrating to the suitable the standard methods to use and the standard to aspire to, but also as a selection tool, one that will gently confront those unsuitable who self-bluff.

    Looks like the App is designed to weed out aspirant Epistemologists who lack the concentration or common sense required to complete a simple form:

    Lately we’ve noticed that a lot of people using the “Talk to Us” feature within Atheos have been forgetting to put their e-mail addresses in the form. The “Talk to Us” feature, if you aren’t already aware of it, is a great little part of Atheos that sends you to a Google Form where you can input any questions, comments, or concerns you have about the app. Within that form, you have the option to put your e-mail address. Unfortunately, if you use the “Talk to Us” feature to let us know about a problem you are having, but forget to put your e-mail in, we can’t help you because we have no way of contacting you.

    “… a lot …” ‘Nuff said.

  5. Crude says:

    I’ve got some suggestions to help them out. A few entries they can add.

    Your blasphemous utterings shall stir the wrath of Crom! Cease, or by my sword I shall end your life here and now to protect this village!

    Woah! You’re not dealing with a Christian, but a Cimmerian. They are a dangerous people, and regard atheists as interlopers who threaten the natural order of things. Better drop the subject – Street Evangelism isn’t worth your life!

    The world is but a powerful simulation, overseen by beings who can do apparent miracles at will.

    Hold on. You’re not dealing with a Christian – this is Elon Musk or Neil DeGrasse Tyson! Fellow irreligious! Sure they believe that the world is created by powerful beings who oversee all, but they’re actually beacons of reason, and thus these are reasonable beliefs! Ask them for an autograph maybe.

    Oh, I agree with you about this atheism thing. Hey, do you have a sister? Like a really, really loose one? I’m looking for some sexual companionship, if I give you my phone number can you introduce me to any women you know who love to have sex with creepy strangers?

    I know you think you made progress with converting someone to reason here, but chances are you’re actually dealing with Richard Carrier. Just excuse yourself and walk away. Unless you’re female, in which case we suggest running.

  6. Dhay says:

    I do love the sense of humour of the designer of the Atheos App website and Atheos App Facebook header: all the graphics are very heavily ancient-Greece themed, with spears and robes everywhere; except at top left of each, atop what I take it is meant to be a Greek column … is a modern light bulb.

    This ancient Greek modern light bulb is depicted shining brightly, judging by the graphic; which is odd, because it’s not plugged in; perhaps the designer intends to highlight what should already be obvious from the description of the App as “An adventure in Truth and Reason”, which by pointed contrast with the usual “Science and Reason” mantra tells us that for Peter Boghossian and his Epistemologists science is deliberately excluded.

  7. jbsptfn says:

    Oh, geez. Not a whole lot to say about that.

    Meanwhile, a certain someone thinks he knows what true science is again on Metacrock’s blog:

    Joe Hinman wrote a book showing how good religious experience is good for you. And Skeppy (the self-proclaimed science god) thinks that it isn’t real science. Some people don’t know when to quit.

  8. pennywit says:

    When does this come up in real life??

  9. SteveK says:

    In the mind of people like Bosshogian, it comes up all the time.

  10. RegualLlegna says:

    The creators of this app suffer the problem of “theism=religion” thinking plus the problem of “atheism (or anything that is not mainstream religion)=anti-religion”.

  11. Michael says:

    I’m certainly no Trump fan, but that looks like he was joking.

    The real news is the FBI re-opening its investigation of Hillary’s emails all because Anthony Weiner couldn’t control his obsession with sex around 15 year olds.

  12. Kevin says:

    I’ve even seen some leftists saying it might be a good idea at this point for Hillary to step aside and let Kaine run against Trump.

    The only thing that would make me happier than Trump not winning would be Hillary not winning. This is really a horrible election cycle.

  13. pennywit says:

    Darn it!! Sorry, that was the wrong link. I did not mean to introduce Trump and Hillary here.

    Here is what I meant to share:

  14. Michael says:

    LOL. Yes, that is more interesting.

  15. TFBW says:

    I wonder how Boghossian would reconcile a judgement like, “that boy needs religion more than this world needs another atheist,” with his religion-virus theory. It’s easy to be an anti-religious crusader when you base it on the claim that all religion is not only false, but harmful.

  16. pennywit says:

    If he’s on the Web, why don’t you ask him?

  17. pennywit says:

    In another note:

    Although there’s evidence that schoolchildren will bully each other over religion, this kind of violent thing doesn’t happen in America. It can, however, be a problem in theocratic countries like Saudi Arabia. Which raises a point that’s discussed in Terry Pratchett’s satire Small Gods. If you convince people to adopt religion at the point of the gun, they might or might not believe in the god … but they certainly will believe in the gun.

  18. TFBW says:

    If he’s on the Web, why don’t you ask him?

    I got as far as clicking on the “contact” tab of his website, but all it offered was a way to sign up to a newsletter. It’s geared towards selling his products, not interacting with him. That’s as much effort as I’m prepared to waste. If you know of a better avenue, how about asking on our behalf?

  19. pennywit says:

    I don’t know any avenues, honestly. I was hoping you did.

  20. TFBW says:

    Twitter, maybe? I don’t do Twitter, but he’s @peterboghossian.

    For a laugh, or possibly an eye-roll, look up my handle on Twitter. Some random atheist clown thought it would be more entertaining to do that than engage in rational discussion.

    I know. Shocking, right?

  21. Dhay says:

    I see in the religion despatches source article for these graphics that the interviewer asked:

    Christine Vigeant and Sarah Paquette, both former students of Boghossian, are the managers of Atheos. … Because Atheos discourages engagement with hostile or clearly obstinate people, it can be difficult to discern for whom the app is intended. After, all what is the purpose of engaging with religious people who are non-violent, moderate, and not attempting to convert anyone themselves?

    And the response was:

    “A lot of times people who are moderate give cover to violent beliefs because they are using the same kind of reasoning. Moderate religious beliefs transfer over into the public sphere,” argued Vigeant, using the example of restricted reproductive rights as such a spillover effect.

    That’s a response which could have come straight out of Sam Harris’ The End of Faith, principally but not exclusively from the early section entitled The Myth of “Moderation” in Religion; Jerry Coyne takes this blanket targeting of moderates to an extreme, hating and opposing accommodationists™ and accommodationism™, ie anyone and everyone who reckons religion is OK to rub along with — especially when said accommodationists™ are atheists; it’s standard Gnu atheist fare; perhaps Harris, Coyne and Vigeant have borrowed from a common “Q” source for this stuff.

    I don’t like this targeting of moderates, this longing for a world of binary extremes (one of which “should” be eliminated entirely, and the moderates attacked as fellow-travellers.) In living memory is the McCarthy era, during which anyone with such vaguely Socialist principles as supporting the right to form Trade Unions was called in for inquisition and attacked — and some were blacklisted from jobs — as commie pinko fellow-travellers.

    Those who were genuine Communists displayed this paranoia against moderates even more clearly. To a committed hard-line Communist of one of those many fragmented parties sharing 98-99% similar views and policies, there was nothing more hated and agitated against (ie not even the common enemy) than the other parties — whose members, despite the slight differences from themselves, were considered to be revisionist class-traitor Capitalist-lackey fellow-travellers.

    I don’t see the perpetrators of either of those two examples of paranoia against moderates in a good light, and I don’t see the Gnu version is any better; it’s a clear sign you are dealing with an extremist, that they seek to suppress moderates.


    Assuming that “restricted reproductive rights” is or includes abortion, isn’t the moderate (and Fundamentalist) spillover into the public domain of the idea of the sanctity of life a very good, a very non-violent spillover; isn’t it their abortion-on-demand opponents who want their beliefs to spill over into that violent action in the public domain which is termination of pregnancy.

    Surely “restricted reproductive rights” is a very bad example for Vigeant to use. What her using it does do, though, is highlight how opposition to Christianity (etc) is often a proxy for opposition to Conservative (Republican, in the USA) views and political policies and a corresponding proxy for support for (eg) Democratic Party views and policies.

    It takes muddled thinking to equate Democrat with atheist, when there are atheist hard-liners such as Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Harris willing and eager to project imperial power to quash Muslims for being Muslims (using the “people who are moderate give cover” rationalisation as justification to attack moderates, too), and when Michael Shermer is famously a Libertarian; and it takes muddled thinking to automatically equate Christian to Republican or the right wing, when there’s quite a sizeable Christian Left.

    When I was younger, I noticed that Readers Digest magazines of the 50’s/60’s had the strange and disorienting feature that Freedom, Democracy, Christianity and Capitalism were treated as synonymous words — only in America! — so that you could usually swap any one for either of the others (ditto their opposites). Do we have this weirdness lingering on in the modern atheists’ synonymous usage of: Democrat = Atheist = Science and Reason.

  22. Dhay says:

    > When I was younger, I noticed that Readers Digest magazines of the 50’s/60’s had the strange and disorienting feature that Freedom, Democracy, Christianity and Capitalism were treated as synonymous words — only in America! — so that you could usually swap any one for either of the others …

    Looks like some of that still persists: here’s Hemant Mehta putting numbers on some of that synonymity, in his 01 February 2017 blog post entitled “What Does It Take to Be a “True” American? 32% Say “Being a Christian” is an Important Factor”; that 32% is an average — the figure rises to 57% among White Evangelical Christians.

    That there can be an anti-Trump ‘Science March’ tells me the Democrat version of that is also alive and kicking.

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