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Rationality Wins, Even With Creationists

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Posted by Harvey on October 11, 2002 16:17:56 UTC


The problem with irrational people is not that they suffer from some form of mental illness, the problem is that they have never been faced down with enough contradictions that they start backing down slightly.

Take Alex, for example, he's about as least likely to listen to a theist as one can be. However, if you read his posts over at the other forum (I do it whenever I get bored), I see that he has come to accept virtual particles as existing and that violations of conservation do occur with regard to these virtual particles. I might not have convinced Alex to become a theist, but I did convince him of some things. I budged an apparently immovable force. True, he left the forum, but he budged.

People budge all the time. We just don't see it. Dick has budged, it is just so imperceptible that we don't see it. Alan has budged, it is just so imperceptible. All of us budge.

The important point of this budging is that as the most stubborn of us budge after getting an onslaught of good arguments, others who are not so convicted, budge even more.

Science is one of the best 'budgers' out there. It forces us to reconsider other ideas, other notions - sometimes in contradiction to our religious notions. However, the need for spirituality is so much an intrinsically human need, that humans will always find spiritual responses to whatever science forces us to accept or not accept. In the case of Carl Sagan, he found the search for ET to be a 'spiritual' ideal (if you doubt that just read his book "Contact"). If you look at Richard Dawkins, he finds evolution and natural selection to be a 'spiritual' encounter. No doubt these forms of spiritual conceptions are lacking in what humans need, and only a belief in God can even remotely provide for most of us.

Nevertheless, we still live in an era where fundamentalism, in its current forms, is still very appealing to people all over the planet (whether it be Christian, Islamic, Hindu, Communist, Scientific, etc). What is needed is to continue to budge people away from the false sense of hope that fundamentalism provides, and bridge toward a less fundamentalist security blanket which is a more pure form of spirituality.

I think it is worth budging people toward that way. It requires digging in and budging others (as well as being budged), but it is worth the effort since it brings about the spirituality that I desire in myself.

Warm regards, Harv

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