Archive for May, 2008

In appreciation of a true genius

Posted in Humor on May 9, 2008 by Robaigh

Ladies and Gentlemen, Grouch Marx!

http://decapitated0soul.wordpress.com/2008/05/09/random-quotes-groucho-marx/

Free thought, eh?

Posted in Christianity, Humor, Identity, religion with tags , , , , , on May 7, 2008 by Robaigh

Here’s a sign I found over at this blog. I haven’t looked at the rest of the blog yet, and I don’t want to make any judgments about the blogger – it’s really more a comment on the signs. They’re kind of funny, in a way, but only insofar as one is willing to suspend one’s logic.

9/10 scientists agree: OK, well, that really is a pretty funny preamble.

Atheism removes religion: Well, not necessarily. Religion is primarily a belief in or reverence for a deity or some supernatural power, but it can also be merely an adherence to a set of spiritual (over against overtly theistic) beliefs or practices, or it can also describe causal zeal (which does not necessarily carry any kind of spiritual overtones). So, atheism removes some forms of religion, on an individual basis, but not a cultural or societal basis. Overall, I can’t buy this product’s claim.

Atheism removes superstition: Again, not necessarily. I know plenty of atheists and agnostics who knock on wood, avoid sidewalk cracks, refuse to step on the “M” in the University of Michigan diag, and who participate in all kinds of practices that are not based on reason or knowledge. This claim also falls flat.

Atheism removes irrationality: since when? See above.

So, yeah, I guess there’s some humor there, but the arguments don’t hold water.

The second sign is just ironic to me. It may as well say, “Believe the message you read on this sign or else.” It reminds me of those old “Question Authority” bumper stickers. Have you ever asked the owner of the hoopty bearing this bumper sticker what authority he has to tell you to question authority? Baffled looks generally ensue.

OK, I’m probably taking these things too seriously. They’re meant to be humorous, but they do kind of strike a sore spot with me. I don’t mind someone sincerely questioning religion, a particular theology, or even God. Questioning is a very, very good thing. Sometimes it will re-affirm a person’s atheism or just bring up more questions, so that the questioner can’t make any conclusions. Well, at least the questioner approached the question with an open mind rather than a rigid certainty in the absolute correctness of his/her position. A wiser person than I said that doubt is not the opposite of faith: certainty is. That sword cuts both ways.