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Friendly Atheism
#1
Friendly Atheism
William Rowe, the late atheist philosopher, coined the term "friendly atheism". By this he meant an atheist view which holds theism can be rational in some cases. Do you agree or disagree that theism is ever rational? Please state your reasons.
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#2
RE: Friendly Atheism
The belief systems that are supported by theology are not unique to religion with the exception of claiming a higher power. The people who choose to follow the parts that are rational while not going the god route are rational IMNSHO.
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#3
RE: Friendly Atheism
Very few people hold beliefs they believe to be irrational. You can perhaps view the brain as a reason-seeking organ; if it does anything it is because it has conceived, computed, or confabulated a reason to do so. Beliefs, therefore, will always be rational to the person that holds them, and perhaps irrational to the one that does not.
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#4
RE: Friendly Atheism
(August 30, 2019 at 7:54 pm)mcc1789 Wrote: William Rowe, the late atheist philosopher, coined the term "friendly atheism". By this he meant an atheist view which holds theism can be rational in some cases. Do you agree or disagree that theism is ever rational? Please state your reasons.

Depends on what is being meant by theism.

Some forms of theism are trivially true (e.g., universe = God and such), the more mainstream ones tend to be irrational on the other hand (one example: Christian Trinity).
"Our attitudes towards things like race or gender operate on two levels. First of all, we have our conscious attitudes. This is what we choose to believe. These are our stated values, which we use to direct our behavior deliberately ... But the IAT [Implicit Association Test] measures something else. It measures our second level of attitude, our racial attitude on an unconscious level - the immediate, automatic associations that tumble out before we've even had time to think. We don't deliberately choose our unconscious attitudes. And ... we may not even be aware of them. The giant computer that is our unconscious silently crunches all the data it can from the experiences we've had, the people we've met, the lessons we've learned, the books we've read, the movies we've seen, and so on, and it forms an opinion." - Malcolm Gladwell
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#5
RE: Friendly Atheism
(August 30, 2019 at 8:15 pm)John 6IX Breezy Wrote: Very few people hold beliefs they believe to be irrational. You can perhaps view the brain as a reason-seeking organ; if it does anything it is because it has conceived, computed, or confabulated a reason to do so. Beliefs, therefore, will always be rational to the person that holds them, and perhaps irrational to the one that does not.

What you describe is internal whims asserted to be rationality.   But that is not rationality.   Rationality is the subordination, not free expression, of internal whims.   This is why real rationality follows a set of external rules validated in a manner that controls and eliminates as appropriate the effect of internal whims.
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#6
RE: Friendly Atheism
There are many good and valid beliefs in religions. To believe that they are derived from a god(s) is the irrational part. 

Does this mean that theists are irrational,............... that depends on the theist.  Dodgy
God(s) and religions are man made and the bane of humanity. 

Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most. Ozzy or Twain/take your pick
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#7
RE: Friendly Atheism
Hmm I suppose its important know what is meant by rational. In my previous post I used the term rational as a synonym for reasonable, or making sense; terms which are very subject-dependant. Anomalocaris implied "real" rationality follows a set of external rules, making it subject-independent. However, if those external rules come from logic, then beliefs can be rational but untrue (given that a conclusion can be valid but untrue). But wyzas' response seems to suggest rationality requires truth (assuming he views things derived from god as irrational because god isn't real or true).

I know people hate semantics and definitions; but almost all conversations fail when participants are each using words differently.
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#8
RE: Friendly Atheism
I think what Rowe meant here was that, from their perspective, some theists could be not obviously wrong for belief in God. That is, he thought they were wrong of course, but it wasn't self-evident.
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#9
RE: Friendly Atheism
I think that theism is rational insofar as one has himself had a direct experience of "something divine." Whatever that is zen, Krishna, Buddhahood, wonder at the universe as understood through science, Eudaimonia, Christ etc. it does not matter. If something is genuinely experienced (even perhaps with so-called a mystical experiences) it is rational to accept that experience as possibly real. Experience is the only evidence of a reality. However. Systems of thought which impose such revelations upon others (religions) are not basing truth claims on experiences (like mystics do). Rather, religion (often) bases it's truth claims on a tradition or authority. This is not rational. At least not in the way that mysticism perhaps is.

I don't think mystics make very sound truth claims. But I think that the mystic's claim of God (or whatever) is--at minimum-- a possibly valid one. The "believer" or "doctrinal adherent's" claim is (conversely) unfounded/irrational or at the very least, lacking any rational basis whatsoever.

I consider myself a friendly atheist because of this. I have had no experience leading me to believe in God or religion, but I think that God belief can be rational. But I also think that rational God belief is atypical. God belief is usually rooted in social pressure to accept a mutual delusion.
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#10
RE: Friendly Atheism
(August 30, 2019 at 11:02 pm)vulcanlogician Wrote: I think that theism is rational insofar as one has himself had a direct experience of "something divine." 

I don't think mystics make very sound truth claims. But I think that the mystic's claim of God (or whatever) is--at minimum-- a possibly valid one. The "believer" or "doctrinal adherent's" claim is (conversely) unfounded/irrational or at the very least, lacking any rational basis whatsoever.

Hmm would you say then that rationality is not transferable? That if a belief is rational for you because of experience, it cannot be rational for me if I believe you?
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