Re: 'a process of non-thinking called faith'

From: Olie L (
Date: Mon Feb 13 2006 - 18:17:25 MST

I extend my sympathies to those who live in societies dominated by faith.

I don't get that feeling around here. Australian society is hardly
rational, but fideism fortunately doesn't hold the majority.

If people are worried about kooky religious ideas dampening AGI research,
there are plenty of societies that are dominated by all sorts of other
whacky paradigms.

As far as I can see, secular societies haven't got this way by a series of
catchy slogans and populism. They got that way by robust debate


>From: Kevin Osborne <>
>Subject: Re: 'a process of non-thinking called faith'
>Date: Tue, 14 Feb 2006 09:13:47 +1000
>- but this is the position I take on religion (and a bunch of other
>agressively in oppostion, in order to balance the playing field.

Does anyone recall the Galilean dialogues on FAI... ,

Cathryn says that next time, she's changing her preferences from an even
part of the cake to ALL of the cake, in order to offset Dennis's preference
for all of the cake?

Overshooting the mark with rationality's place in society is the same thing.
  It's like a school board actually prescribing the teaching of Flying
Spagghetti Monsterism for the sake of balance.

>my 'aggressive in opposition' approach is like 'affirmative action'
>for science; I don't believe equal rights would have gotten anywhere
>without militant feminists, and I don't believe technology enthusiasts
>will get anywhere without militant rationalists;

I'm suddenly reminded of Tom Lehrer:

"there are some people in this world who do not love their fellow human
beings, and I HATE people like that.

>rational (liberal)
>thought is just too wishy-washy. (to qualify the washiness moniker,
>compare the mob-chant characteristics of 'respect the cultural
>heritage of others in order to foster a mutually harmonious society'
>versus 'fuck the niggers')

The problem is not being moderate. The problem is your slogan writer.

Some nicer pro-multicultural slogans are:

"Celebrate cultural diversity!"
"Unity in diversity!"
"Reject the myths of Racism!"
or even
"Fuck the niggers!" ;)

>The idea is that society is dominated by non-rational forces; fear
>stoked by a go-with-what-rates media, a go-with-what-polls leadership,
>that kind of thing. To get to a halfway-point where both faith and
>rationailty are accorded equal measure,

Sorry, who wants a 50/50 emphasis on faith and rationality? I sure as hell

It's NOT rational to accord Faith equal measure as Rationality.

Get the goals straight.

>we can't promote the equal
>measure as the deal we seek; if we do so we'll end up compromising to
>halfway between what we want and what we have, which means a quarter
>rational versus three-quarters not; still no balance, and a continued
>marginalization of critical thinking.
>By fighting for 100% rationality, the dickering process should
>hopefully playout to 50/50 rationalism/faith, which is OK with me.
>People seem to object to 'Darwins Rottweiler' as being too extreme,
>but I think 'Fundamentalist Futurists' are exactly what is needed.
>Militant rationalism people - Can we get a poster of 'Uncle Eliezer
>wants YOU!' pointing at us? :-)

Well, I want a picture of Eliezer doing the chicken dance, but I don't know
what good it would do. Neither of those pictures is going to help the
Singularity Institute.

-- Olie

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 17 2013 - 04:00:55 MDT