Can somebody be intelligent but at the same time make an exception in their logic to remain beholden to their religious beliefs?
It's not rocket science to discredit God and religion. It's simple logic and judgement. Somebody's brain has to be f'ing retarded to accept the Jesus myth.
But you wouldn't immediately know somebody's stupid enough to accept Christianity (or some belief in a deity) because they attempt to accept their religion alone on faith, and otherwise scrutinize everything else.
Problem is, at what point does this not work? I suggest that unlimited intellectual growth is only possible for somebody who doesn't accept bad logic and bad judgement. If somebody is dumb enough to accept beliefs in God and religion, then these beliefs infect their thought processes whether they've deliberately made an exception for them or not.
My cousin is almost 40, with an Ivy League Computer Science PhD. He's a teacher at a prominent university. And he's a Christian. When I ask him if he's a Christian, he admits that he is, but then he immediately follows it up with "but I'm not very religious." So he knows he needs to feel embarrassed for accepting stupid beliefs like this, and by his words he shows his embarrassment is so intense that he tries to excuse himself from the humiliation he is due because of his beliefs. So he's saying, "yes, I'm an idiot, but being an idiot is not a very big part of who I am from day to day." But it shows up somewhere else. He watches kiddie cartoons! LOL!
So is it truly possible to "make an exception" for religious faith and be otherwise intelligent? How intelligent can somebody get? What are the limitations? Where does somebody's stupidity show up when they try to be a "smart" believer?
You say you stop at "theory" because you remain open to new discoveries. I stopped at Adam's rib and the talking snake and decided I would remain closed to anything but extraordinary proof.
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. XD
Talking snakes and rib ladies are far more extraordinary than anything I see in science, which mostly has such proof. Stopping at fiction that disproves itself and never starting on reality seems like an odd place to be...
Is that why we call women 'honey', we just dropped the BBQ part?
'I want my baby back, baby back, baby back...'
This was God creating Eve as an afterthought, basis for evangelical claims she is nothing but a help mate and subordinate to the husband. God only put them in the world to put out. Be fruitful, go forth and multiply, but only in the missionary position. That Eve encountered a talkiing snake is nothing, Lewis Carroll did it all the time in his Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. And the fact that no biologist -- and certainly no herpetologist -- has come upon a snake that talked does not disprove it's having happened. God can do anything He likes.
God can do anything he likes? Ok, prove it.
Yup, one more reason to call religion a pox on humanity. Treating other groups, women, and other races/groups, as 2nd class citizens or worse, property.
Religion is evil, and this is just one more example.
Atheists also can have bastions of irrationality. Many do.
Can that irrationality -- and maybe each step in reaching intelligence -- be compartmentalized? I knew that the god thing and religion was stupid by the time I was 14. That doesn't mean that I was "intelligent" (and certainly not "wise") in all things. I was very weak at math, for instance. My compartmentalization comment has specifically to do with this math example. When I was in my mid-30's, I developed a fascination with engineering, took all of the requisite math classes and had suddenly "got it." I have no idea why. Is this part of how otherwise intelligent people can't "get" the religion fallacy issue? It just won't happen until something clicks in their brain?
Yeah, and then we have all these late bloomers coming around in their middle age, finally dropping their religious beliefs.
Yes, that is very interesting.
But, one thing is mathematics, believing in funky stuff is another.
Irrationality often comes from strong psychological forces. Many people have intense feelings buried that they don't cope with. Really having those feelings might destabilize their relationships. So the intense feelings are expressed in a masked way, as conspiracy theories or whatever.
Especially, having intense buried feelings from very early childhood tends to be expressed in child-type thinking. Religion involves thinking patterns from childhood - where people (God) can read your mind, where magic can happen, where just wishing (praying) might accomplish things.
People can do this without religion, being slightly crazy instead or having a magical "philosophy" of life.
Being intelligent doesn't change this.
Some people are brilliant and rational in their profession but personally, quite crazy. They do keep their craziness away from their professional life.
My father seems to have been quite different in his professional life, from how he was in his family.
He wrote a book at the end of his life, about evolution, in which he argued that there must be some intrinsic purpose or will in the universe, because natural selection was inadequate to explain the history of life. I read his book and I saw many problems with it. And the professional reviews from biologists pretty much said his book was a piece of crap. He was not a biologist.
What he was actually doing, I think, was trying to explore some realities about his family and his life, that were too hot to handle. So being an intellectual, he tried to handle these realities by writing a book arguing (sort of) for intelligent design.
Thanks for sharing.
@Dorian: this won't do. Daring the believers to get God "to do anything." Their holy books are replete with instances of non-believers making such a request, both to O.T. heroes and New. In the New Testament, for example, Satan is shown tempting Jesus to perform super-human acts and he refuses, and one must suppose this is the origin of the old saying, "Only fools accept dares." Satan was being silly. As we all know, a religion is cheapened when spectacular feats are attributed to it. (Other than the miracles of the Bible, which are another matter.) My guess is, a lot of theists will simply laugh at you when you make that suggestion (proving God by His acts) since the holy books already provide the believer with an excuse for not doing so.