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What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
#26

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
They're both very poor at communication.  
If they were actually seriously interested in convincing others that their positions have some value, they would learn how to *listen*.
Neither of them listen. They're not actually interested in understanding what makes people of non-belief tick.
They are both here for combat. Combat is not how conversion happens, so I take neither of them seriously. 

I "poke" at them disrespectfully, as neither of them deserve more, and really don't know as much about religion (as taught in main-line university centers) as some here do (ie Cheerful Charlie), and I respect neither of them. An actual religious person would be appalled by both of them. Neither of them care about understanding anyone here. They are not here to be a part of a community or try to understand and listen to others. They're both the same as the old campus shouting preacher yelling at people as they walk by. The fact that Steve appears to "wear a suit" does not help him. 

I have a lot of friends in religion and out, and none of the religious would take the approach they do.
I have this suspicion that Steve is trying to convince himself that his "rational" approach is actually true. The entire approach is flawed for many reasons, including religious ones ... but he is the product of American Fundamentalism ... which is unique in world religions, due I suspect, to his exposure to the WLC/Biola sect of US Fundamentalist religion where presuppositionalism rules. They worship at the altar of "Reasonable Faith", but in the end they abandon reason, (and never actually justify the approach in the first place). Jesus didn't walk around preaching about logical arguments. It was an age where everyone in the culture accepted the common assumptions, and those included a deity. That is no longer true.  

Either here or on AF Steve announced his purpose was to "not let atheists get away with their usual ("misguided"..according to him) arguments". It's very clear in the "soul" thread, he would cook up anything to defend his "world-view" / "personal experience" position to prove the validity of his position. "My logic tells me there must exist my particular god, ..... therefore it MUST be out there". That's not how reality works. Drich is an internet troll who needs to tell himself he's an "expert" on something ... (anything actually), and he's going to shove that down your throat, like it or not. Neither are here to understand anything or listen to anything. They need to tell themselves they are the ones from whom true knowledge comes. Both have often remarked on how long they have been doing their shtick. As poor as it is, they think doing something badly for a long time makes it more valuable.
 
A change in someone's position or understanding of anything is a long slow complex process. While it is not where I came from, these two fail to comprehend the abusive histories many people who left religion came from. Instead of trying to understand these histories, they present simplistic "tripe" ("arguments"). No one is converted by arguments. There is something very suspicious about people who need to try to make you agree with them. I can't get past that. 

The best approach I know are the nuns I know, who teach English to immigrants, attend Native American drumming ceremonies as a "supportive presence", run their free clinics ... and accept people from where they come from and let their actions speak for them ... they preach with their actions, and rarely if ever even talk about religion. 

If they're not a part of the community, their "testimony" will never be taken seriously. No one *hears* what is being shouted at them from the nutcase on the corner. If there remains any value in understanding why ancient people accepted their cultural myth systems, it flies WAY over the heads of these ignorant preachers.
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#27

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 03:35 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: A change in someone's position or understanding of anything is a long slow complex process. 

It sure took me a long time.  So something I wrote may make better sense to Steve ten years down the road.
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#28

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
FFS, isn't there enough opportunities for preaching at people that they've got to come here?
  [Image: pirates.gif] Dog  
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#29

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 01:46 PM)Dānu Wrote: Still working on finding the words, but let's start off with a list:

1. It's a dishonestly passive-aggressive attempt to criticize these men while pretending to want dialog in what is a bad faith analog to the concern troll.  One doesn't start a dialog with somebody by soliciting third party opinions about them.  This is pure passive-aggressiveness of the sort you seem to specialize in, Mark.

Funny, to me it seems to be a very overt criticism of proselytizing generally.  It is put out as an invitation to discuss more effective interactions than attempts to convert.  I ostensibly address it to Drich and Steve because Drich seems intent on conversions while Steve has told me he is here to sharpen his apologetics.


(02-22-2020, 01:46 PM)Dānu Wrote: 2. I've probably known these men as long as you have, and given what I recall them saying, your characterization of both these men and their intentions is so grossly inaccurate as to constitute strawmen that you've constructed just so you can knock them down and then pat yourself on the back for having done so.

3. You fault them for, as far as I can tell, the same sort of attempt to persuade others of their views and beliefs that you are here doing yourself with your own special brand of disingenuous rhetoric in which you cloak judgmentalism in an appearance of wanting compromise and reconciliation.  You've been pulling this schtick for a long time, Mark, and while I don't doubt you think you are trying to be constructive, it shows that you're at least as lacking in insight into your own behavior and your proselytization concerning your worldview as you represent these men as being.  It's the most absurd example of the pot calling the kettle black that I've seen in a while.


Well I have Drich blocked so I don't have to see what he writes and I only rarely look at what Steve writes.  But I stand behind the characterizations I've written.  Both are concerned with manipulating the beliefs of others.  I don't see why my saying so upsets you.  I haven't set out to specifically address them in particular.  I've only drawn on them as ready to hand examples.  Maybe that is calloused of me but it is not any objective of mine to be morally exceptional in all regards.


(02-22-2020, 01:46 PM)Dānu Wrote: 4. Your comments show a rather pathetic and inept understanding of human nature, all the while bandying about how you feel that these men are oblivious to the facts of human nature, or at least your human nature, which would help them succeed if they were in fact doing what you claim they are doing.
5. It's an example of the type of mind-reading psychoanalyzing typical of trolls, Dunning-krugers, and other similar idiots.

No doubt I am ignorant of that of which I am ignorant.  


(02-22-2020, 01:46 PM)Dānu Wrote: 6.  I'll add more later but this whole enterprise sickens me.  If I gave negative rep, this and other recent posts of yours might well move me to do so.

I suspect I know the ones you have in mind.  So I am also critical of the scientism which so often accompanies online or outspoken atheism.  I'm also disinterested in debate.
"Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense, and I'll kiss you for it. To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's. 
F. D.
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#30

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
Here, we are a lost cause, so coming here as a missionary is not going to work.
But if they must...

1.  Avoid Walls of Text will large fonts and lots of exclamation points.
2.  Remember, we have all heard it all before.
3. Remember, we value reason and facts.  We don't like God of the gaps, rationalizations, and abandonment of reason.
4. Bible verse quoting means you are on aboard the Bible all the way.  Cherry picking verses, and ignoring verses that contradict your favorite verses will be called out sharply.
5. If you really don't know the atheist arguments about religion, you will read them loud and clear here.  If you just ignore us and plow ahead, you have lost the arguments.
6.  Mere repetition is not an acceptable substitute for measured reasoning.
7.  Merely posting a link to some video is going to get you ignored.
8.  Threats of hell fire and damnation don't work.  It will get you some rough handling if this is all you have to offer.
9.  Many atheists here were Christians in the past.  You are not going to be for the most part, be educating people who have just not heard the words of the Lord.
10.  Most of us have indeed read the bible, and are familiar with it. Some of us in great detail.
11.  Evidence.  Hard evidence.  Evidence talks, foolish claims walk.
12. The Bible is full of nonsense, contradictions, silliness and evil doings of a supposedly perfectly good God.  If hearing about these bothers you, don't come here to argue.  If you don't have good reasons to offer for these things, you are not going to get very far here.
13.  We don't care about the ancient thoughts of St. Dumbass or St. Cowflop of ever so many centuries ago.
14.  Bible verses do not trump the findings of science.
15.  If backed into a corner, all you have to offer is "God is incomprehensible.  His ways are not our ways.  God is inscrutable.", you have lost the debate.  These things are how we know we have won the debate.
“Common sense is not a gift, it’s a punishment. Because you have to deal with everyone who doesn’t have it.”
- George Bernard Shaw



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#31

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
Unbelievable. You freely admit you don't read them, yet you stand behind your characterization of the shit you admit you haven't read. What a fucking douche bag.

I think you've topped the time Aractus doubled down on his criticism of a book he hadn't read.
[Image: afo-sig-009%20copy.jpg]
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#32

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 04:56 PM)Mark Wrote: Both are concerned with manipulating the beliefs of others.

Gee, who does that remind me of? I'll have to get back to you after I've had time to think about it.
[Image: afo-sig-009%20copy.jpg]
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#33

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 05:14 PM)Dānu Wrote: Unbelievable.  You freely admit you don't read them, yet you stand behind your characterization of the shit you admit you haven't read.  What a fucking douche bag.

I think you've topped the time Aractus doubled down on his criticism of a book he hadn't read.

The only one engaged in mind fuckery here is yourself.  You don't approve.  Got it.  You are as entitled to your opinion as I am mine.
"Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense, and I'll kiss you for it. To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's. 
F. D.
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#34

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
I've got a novel idea. Why don't you ask Steve and Drich to come here to your thread and tell you themselves what their intentions are.
[Image: afo-sig-009%20copy.jpg]
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#35

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
From my lifetime observations of Christians (theists) they fall into one of two camps, and we have
representatives of both camps here on this forum.

The first are the Christians (like my friends) who're well-educated, scientificality aware, rational thinkers,
articulate speakers, unprejudiced, rational debaters, broad-minded, generous of spirit, and free from
petty resentfulness or vindictiveness.

The second are the Christians who're poorly educated in the sciences, irrational thinkers, inarticulate,
severely prejudiced or biassed, narrow-minded and self-centred, ineffectual debaters, hypocritical of
others, and vindictive towards people with contradictory opinions.

The first group fit in well in atheist forums like ours, and partake in rational debates about religion and
also non-religious topics across the forum.  They make their points and express their (often opposing)
opinions economically, articulately, and with courtesy.

Whereas the second group are invariably antagonistic towards both atheism and atheists.  They flood
forums with biblical scripture disguised as history, and refuse to accept the well-established tenets of
the sciences.  They're bombastic in delivery, often pompous and judgmental.  They generally refuse to
debate specific points of their beliefs in any depth, while belittling their opponents with attacks on their
alleged lack of knowledge or breadth of vision.

—Entering into any sort of meaningful debate with the latter group is destined to fail, both from the
perspective of respectful discourse, or the promotion of the veracity of either point of view.

Atheists usually try to frame their points of view using accredited scientific facts, ratiocination, and other
viable, empirical evidence.  Theists on the other hand largely refuse to accept any of the modern sciences
which dare to oppose their way of thinking—structure along the lines of ancient religious dogma and long
outdated, blinded beliefs in the supernatural and phenomenal.
I'm a creationist;   I believe that man created God.
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#36

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 02:21 AM)Mark Wrote: The Christians I respect most are those who respect my position.  So the only ones who can ever get me to care what they think are the ones who genuinely accept that some people simply have other beliefs.   If they admit that there is no argument for the existence of God which can persuade someone who doesn't already find that likely, then I will consider them honest and bright and be more open to what else they have to say.  

Yeah, but ....

Someone who makes their belief a topic of conversation is completely alien to me. As I said numerous times. It's highly unusual that someone talks about religion at all where I live. I mean, apart from priests, but that comes with the job description. Politics, yes, that comes up often, but I don't remember to have had a religious talk at all in the 57 years of my existence. It's just not a topic bearing any importance.
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#37

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 05:14 PM)Dānu Wrote: ... You freely admit you don't read them, yet you stand behind your characterization of the shit you admit you haven't read.  What a fucking douche bag ...

I don't listen to or read Trump's rallies, speeches, tweets or other utterances.  I'm not a masochist.  Yet my characterizations of Trump are more or less accurate; it isn't necessary to personally experience every syllable an author emits to reach an accurate assessment of the author's veracity, knowledge, erudition, temper, prejudice, or the point.  In many cases, accounts proffered by credible third parties are also sufficient.  In fact, assessments made by third parties often reveal perspectives I wouldn't have reached on my own.  Direct exposure to every turd in a septic tank is not required to grade its stink.
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#38

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 05:11 PM)Cheerful Charlie Wrote: Here, we are a lost cause, so coming here as a missionary is not going to work.
But if they must...

1.  Avoid Walls of Text will large fonts and lots of exclamation points.
2.  Remember, we have all heard it all before.
3. Remember, we value reason and facts.  We don't like God of the gaps, rationalizations, and abandonment of reason.
4. Bible verse quoting means you are on aboard the Bible all the way.  Cherry picking verses, and ignoring verses that contradict your favorite verses will be called out sharply.
5. If you really don't know the atheist arguments about religion, you will read them loud and clear here.  If you just ignore us and plow ahead, you have lost the arguments.
6.  Mere repetition is not an acceptable substitute for measured reasoning.
7.  Merely posting a link to some video is going to get you ignored.
8.  Threats of hell fire and damnation don't work.  It will get you some rough handling if this is all you have to offer.
9.  Many atheists here were Christians in the past.  You are not going to be for the most part, be educating people who have just not heard the words of the Lord.
10.  Most of us have indeed read the bible, and are familiar with it. Some of us in great detail.
11.  Evidence.  Hard evidence.  Evidence talks, foolish claims walk.
12. The Bible is full of nonsense, contradictions, silliness and evil doings of a supposedly perfectly good God.  If hearing about these bothers you, don't come here to argue.  If you don't have good reasons to offer for these things, you are not going to get very far here.
13.  We don't care about the ancient thoughts of St. Dumbass or St. Cowflop of ever so many centuries ago.
14.  Bible verses do not trump the findings of science.
15.  If backed into a corner, all you have to offer is "God is incomprehensible.  His ways are not our ways.  God is inscrutable.", you have lost the debate.  These things are how we know we have won the debate.

But ..... big red letters. They are convincing. The bigger the better. If they write in big red letters, I know they are right.  Chuckle
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#39

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
Quote:Both are concerned with manipulating the beliefs of others.

And both suck at it.
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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#40

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
The best possible approach would be to define their god in such a way that he could be tested in a scientifically falsifiable fashion. Since this is impossible they should just shut up about their imaginary god. Quoting the bible or any other holy book is useless, empty twattle.
                                                         T4618
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#41

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 07:17 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(02-22-2020, 05:11 PM)Cheerful Charlie Wrote: Here, we are a lost cause, so coming here as a missionary is not going to work.
But if they must...

1.  Avoid Walls of Text will large fonts and lots of exclamation points.
2.  Remember, we have all heard it all before.
3. Remember, we value reason and facts.  We don't like God of the gaps, rationalizations, and abandonment of reason.
4. Bible verse quoting means you are on aboard the Bible all the way.  Cherry picking verses, and ignoring verses that contradict your favorite verses will be called out sharply.
5. If you really don't know the atheist arguments about religion, you will read them loud and clear here.  If you just ignore us and plow ahead, you have lost the arguments.
6.  Mere repetition is not an acceptable substitute for measured reasoning.
7.  Merely posting a link to some video is going to get you ignored.
8.  Threats of hell fire and damnation don't work.  It will get you some rough handling if this is all you have to offer.
9.  Many atheists here were Christians in the past.  You are not going to be for the most part, be educating people who have just not heard the words of the Lord.
10.  Most of us have indeed read the bible, and are familiar with it. Some of us in great detail.
11.  Evidence.  Hard evidence.  Evidence talks, foolish claims walk.
12. The Bible is full of nonsense, contradictions, silliness and evil doings of a supposedly perfectly good God.  If hearing about these bothers you, don't come here to argue.  If you don't have good reasons to offer for these things, you are not going to get very far here.
13.  We don't care about the ancient thoughts of St. Dumbass or St. Cowflop of ever so many centuries ago.
14.  Bible verses do not trump the findings of science.
15.  If backed into a corner, all you have to offer is "God is incomprehensible.  His ways are not our ways.  God is inscrutable.", you have lost the debate.  These things are how we know we have won the debate.

But ..... big red letters. They are convincing. The bigger the better. If they write in big red letters, I know they are right.  Chuckle
You mean like this???

God is real because it says so in this Book!!!!

Big Grin
                                                         T4618
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#42

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 07:03 PM)abaris Wrote:
(02-22-2020, 02:21 AM)Mark Wrote: The Christians I respect most are those who respect my position.  So the only ones who can ever get me to care what they think are the ones who genuinely accept that some people simply have other beliefs.   If they admit that there is no argument for the existence of God which can persuade someone who doesn't already find that likely, then I will consider them honest and bright and be more open to what else they have to say.  

Yeah, but ....

Someone who makes their belief a topic of conversation is completely alien to me. As I said numerous times. It's highly unusual that someone talks about religion at all where I live. I mean, apart from priests, but that comes with the job description. Politics, yes, that comes up often, but I don't remember to have had a religious talk at all in the 57 years of my existence. It's just not a topic bearing any importance.


Day to day there isn't much presumption of religiosity near me either.  But it does seem the US is home to a disproportionate chunk of the supernaturally inclined.

But I take it that if someone came up to you out of the blue to sell you on joy unbound and the best afterlife ever most people around you would regard him as unstable and possibly in need of help.  In my neighborhood it wouldn't be so remarkable as to think that way.  We are in the US here.
"Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense, and I'll kiss you for it. To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's. 
F. D.
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#43

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 06:47 PM)SYZ Wrote: From my lifetime observations of Christians (theists) they fall into one of two camps, and we have
representatives of both camps here on this forum.

The first are the Christians (like my friends) who're well-educated, scientificality aware, rational thinkers,
articulate speakers, unprejudiced, rational debaters, broad-minded, generous of spirit, and free from
petty resentfulness or vindictiveness.

I agree and I think Steve is an honest dealer.  The only reason I don't read him more is I think the task of proving or disproving the existence of a supernatural being is doomed.  I don't fault him for holding out hope, I just don't keep checking back to see how he's doing with that because I don't think it likely he'll succeed.


(02-22-2020, 06:47 PM)SYZ Wrote: The second are the Christians who're poorly educated in the sciences, irrational thinkers, inarticulate,
severely prejudiced or biassed, narrow-minded and self-centred, ineffectual debaters, hypocritical of
others, and vindictive towards people with contradictory opinions.

And you can't spend a couple months on an atheist site without meeting this type.


(02-22-2020, 06:47 PM)SYZ Wrote:
Atheists usually try to frame their points of view using accredited scientific facts, ratiocination, and other 
viable, empirical evidence.  Theists on the other hand largely refuse to accept any of the modern sciences
which dare to oppose their way of thinking—structure along the lines of ancient religious dogma and long
outdated, blinded beliefs in the supernatural and phenomenal.

I piss some people off because I don't expect science to carry as much weight as they do.  I'm with the Christians in thinking there is more to it than what the deductive powers of our conscious minds can turn out.  I simply disagree with them about it being something supernatural, involving external agents of omni-like powers who have finally tuned every last quark and also hold the keys to two afterlife parks.  All of that is silly.
"Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense, and I'll kiss you for it. To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's. 
F. D.
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#44

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
approach? backing in, bent over with pants down and one arm reaching back with a handful of freshly-cut switches from the willow tree.
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#45

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 07:41 PM)Mark Wrote: But I take it that if someone came up to you out of the blue to sell you on joy unbound and the best afterlife ever most people around you would regard him as unstable and possibly in need of help.  In my neighborhood it wouldn't be so remarkable as to think that way.  We are in the US here.

Possibly. Any politician making a fuzz over religion is frowned upon and regarded with distrust. Along the lines of who is he adressing there and to what purpose?
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#46

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 02:21 AM)Mark Wrote: I'm going to go ahead and let the cat out of the bag.  Sorry guys.  @Drich, you taking notes?  @SteveII, sorry but I don't see you as being able to pull this approach off even if you wanted to - but I don't think you'd want to.

The Christians I respect most are those who respect my position.  So the only ones who can ever get me to care what they think are the ones who genuinely accept that some people simply have other beliefs.   If they admit that there is no argument for the existence of God which can persuade someone who doesn't already find that likely, then I will consider them honest and bright and be more open to what else they have to say.  

Somebody who embodied the approach I'm advocating is @Catholic_Lady.  But there are plenty of Christians in the sciences who take this position.  Some will go so far as to admit they wrestle with faith but are committed to going on wrestling.  If they sense you would really like to go on wrestling they'll be happy to support you but they don't push their own agenda where it isn't welcome.

So @Drich, if you want to win converts.  Be brutally honest with yourself and humble about your beliefs and you'll have them eating out of your hand, provided that what you're handing out is at all tasty.  But so long as you go on pushing your religion on us out of your duty to God .. well, sorry but you can just get bent for all we care.  

@SteveII you couldn't make this work because you're convinced that you yourself are clever enough to prove God's existence both to us and to yourself.  We're never going to agree with you about that, but for what its worth I do believe you honestly think it can be done and that you can figure it out.  That means I think you're honest even if lacking insight.

Trying to convert people on an atheist website is silly.  We're not just atheists, we're people who actively sought out other atheists on the internet.  That's not a group of people who are sitting on the fence.
  
The only reason for religious folks to come to one is they like to argue, or out of curiosity.

So to answer the question, I don't think there is any good way to be a missionary on a site like this.  Nobody is this deep in atheism, and is like "Wow, that catholic lady was nice, maybe I'll believe in God now."
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#47

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
I didn't come here to hear people preach.
  [Image: pirates.gif] Dog  
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#48

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
(02-22-2020, 11:22 PM)Gawdzilla Sama Wrote: I didn't come here to hear people preach.

Amen!
ROFL2
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#49

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
Best approach?  BackwardsSlowly

ETA- If I wanted to hear religious twaddle I'd seek it out.
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#50

What is the best possible approach a missionary could take on an atheist website?
My cousins tried preaching at me. When they started missing work they gave it up.
  [Image: pirates.gif] Dog  
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