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Intelligence And Atheism


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Scientists at the university of Rochester have concluded from their research that atheists are more intelligent than theists (believers in religion). Why should this be? Could it be that those who follow religion are just that - followers, who accept the party line (Strength through social cohesion)? While those that think for themselves, question everything - philosophize / use the scientific model. I think atheists are basically loners who question everything, trusting nothing, not even themselves. As they say Fools rush in where angels fear to tread - hence you are more likely to have an army of believers (political / religious) charging into battle than a Doubting Thomas as typically played by Woody Allen in his early days. The Talmud apparently is different in this respect as it is expected that you argue over its meaning rather than follow it blindly. Likewise Zen is simply waking up to the truth of reality and overcoming set beliefs. Buddhism is of course about living right and Christianity about doing good as is Islam apparently but the real problem is of course obeying without questioning, rather than rebelling and questioning (Thinking for yourself, being independent and learning what the truth is outside what you may have been taught. Intelligence is cold, hard logic and emotion isn't. Does society need one to the exclusion of the other? No, it needs both in the same way as children need adults, until those children in their turn grow up into adults, learn the truth and stand on their own two feet. Nothing is constant but change and as Jesus said when I was a child I did childish things but when I grew up I put away childish things. This is not to promote Christianity but to use wisdom wherever it is found. When you exclude something because it is 'foreign,'this is prejudice and ignorance at work. It is saying because it is 'different' it has no validity or interest for you. This is building walls that not only keep you in and feeling safe but others out, which destroys the ability to learn and explore, the way to build new knowledge and change yourself and the world i.e. become intelligent / learn. I hope my point is clear and well explained. There are no enemies except in your mind and as long as you project them into the world, you are as much divided against yourself as well as others.

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I remember my father giving me swimming lessons.

 

I was absolutely terrified while he averred with the utmost sincerity that he could muster that "I will not let you go."

 

Whereas,

 

A.} I'd heard him tell tales of his method, which involved getting the victim to stroke and then surreptitiously letting go at some point.

 

And,

 

B.} Even without prior warning, if he truly didn't expect to let go of me, then how did he expect to teach me to swim?

 

Likewise,

 

The mass media looks Religious people right in the eye and tells them that their own Religions don't really mean what the scriptures say.

 

And the very cursorily educated Religious Practitioners fall for the trick.

 

Then those "Teachers with Itching Ears" come in and do teach such a watered down, muddled mess of an "Allegorized" Theology.

 

Hell, you can't defend such a mess. It isn't even wrong.

 

I don't think that anyone could claim that Billy Graham or David Wilkerson aren't/weren't highly intelligent men. Probably John Wesley and especially Charles Spurgeon were even more intellectually gifted.

 

I believe that Spurgeon could have held up his end of the intellectual log in any company.

 

Metaphysically and Epistemologically who is to say that Western Style Skepticism and the "Scientific Model" are valid means to apprehend God?

 

But then, there is something to be said for Jesus' comment about becoming like a little child.

 

I once read that a man only needs three Books:

 

A King James Bible

 

A Good Hymnal

 

and,

 

An Almanac to tell him when to plant and harvest.

 

I travelled far from that ideal while still a small boy.

 

But I met people who lived that way when I was a small boy. Folks who'd went to Church and Sunday School every week, and who read their Bible and prayed almost daily.

 

People who frequently and unselfconsciously quoted Bible verses in their moment to moment speech.

 

Those people had a simple dignity. Their wisdom lighted them from within and they were positively numinous.

 

Sadly, I encounter far less such people today.

 

O and Christianity isn't about "Doing Right"; but the realization that even our very Best effort at Right Living isn't going to pay the debt that we've accrued through sin. The choice is to make formal petition to Jesus to pay the debt we cannot pay, or to be thrown into everlasting torment as an alternate form of payment.

 

"Right Living" is a good pious goal to aim at. It isn't fully possible and what partial success we accrue on our own plays no part in our Salvation.

 

 

 

Saxon Violence

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I think what has happened is a shattering of the group mind into separate parts or individuals. It's like big, old computers shrinking down to the mini ones we have nowadays (personal computers). There is the concentrated mind (individual) and the dispersed mind (societal). We need both. Without the mind / body as a continuum, you have one without the other and this is what has happened to us as a natural consequence I believe, of how we evolve spiritually. We either work together as a society, realizing that we need both parts to create a whole or lose this co-operation i.e. working together, to turn into physically ill or mentally ill beings and either physical ability or mental awareness goes out the window, to the detriment of the being. Can any of us stop growing older? Can a society stop itself doing the same? That is all we are witnessing here.

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  • 5 months later...

Ever read Ayn Rand?

 

She makes an excellent case that "Society" is just a Pretext to Violate Individual Rights.

 

 

Saxon Violence

 

Sorry for late reply: Margaret Thatcher also said she didn't believe society existed, just individuals. I personally don't think society is a pretext to violate rights but that it can be used as such by the unscrupulous. In other words the honest (innocent) work within society to improve the lot of the majority because they have a conscience i.e, awareness that is how things work, through co-operation and stop working through criminality (short term gain without regard for later repercussions upon the whole organism of society). It might be that individuals have the original ideas to inspire society but it needs ordinary people to physically turn these dreams into reality through effort (a genius doesn't build a house but manual labourerers do).

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