Andre
user 65942292
London, GB
Post #: 7
Ginny, later on I say that I accept the claim that the minds of pious people are unwell, but my point is that this claim needs to be properly qualified. They are not unwell in the same way that a body with an infection is unwell, to the extent that bodily infections are not genetically pre-programmed in healthy bodies, whereas belief in the supernatural arguably is. Overcoming religious beliefs is something that tends to be the task of highly evolved cultures, rather than highly evolved bodies. Our bodies (at the neurological level) are still primed for belief in the supernatural, whereas our cultural (in a very broad sense that includes science) level of development is perfectly capable of handling belief in a supernatural dimension. Maybe this is not true, but it is what the latest findings in the relevant scientific community (neuroscientists) point towards. I don't agree that saying that religious people are unwell is accurate in the sense of offering a neat analogy. Healthy minds have a natural tendency, or a natural susceptibility, to believe in supernatural entities. `Maybe those scientists who have come to this conclusion are wrong, in which case taking issue with Boghossian's suggestion would amount to assuming that the conclusions of mainstream neuroscientists are right, thereby incurring in factual error. But I think that the arguments offered by neuroscience, and the evidence that they report, are extremely cogent.
Georgi L.
Guffaw
London, GB
Post #: 1,839
Ah ok, I get what you're saying now. Yes, as a species we do seem to be inclined to belief in the supernatural. It may have had some evolutionary benefits, but as you say, now it is a detraction. A bit like the tussle between the cave man part of the brain; the amygdalla, and the later evolved higher reasoning centre; the neocortex. The amygdalla still overrides the neocortex when it shouldn't, because it interprets modern day stress as the same as the stress of running away from a lion. So the term 'lose our heads; is literally correct, we do lose the use of the reasoning centre and have an overreaction like road rage etc. Hence our programming is now faulty.

And I guess we could infer that the faith virus exploits our now faulty programming of inclination of belief in the supernatural.
Andre
user 65942292
London, GB
Post #: 8
When you say 'our now faulty programming' you imply what I meant, because it can be said to be faulty only against the background of a comparatively highly evolved human society. My worry regarding Peter Boghossian assertion that religious people are unwell relates to the fact that by this he can't mean that there is anything wrong with their brains from a physiological point of view, but rather from an epistemological point of view. And, to some extent, being well may well amount to having the ability to overcome nature. But then again this would be nature overcoming nature, i. e., it wouldn't be overcoming nature at all: learning with experience and accumulating data is part of human nature. The interesting fact is that these abilities originate in bodies which haven't had enough time to 'learn with experience', i. e., to evolve. We end up with a kind of duality. If a carry on with this argument I will end up concluding that we are apes with supernatural powers. And we all know what happened to Lucifer and Icarus. Anyway, I'm sure Peter Boghossian isn't proposing that we should approach religious people with the news that they are unwell. Do we want to say that behind their backs? What if we are exposed by The Sun? (By The Sun I don't mean Jesus Christ; I mean The Sun newspaper.)
Georgi L.
Guffaw
London, GB
Post #: 1,840
Anyway, I'm sure Peter Boghossian isn't proposing that we should approach religious people with the news that they are unwell. Do we want to say that behind their backs? What if we are exposed by The Sun? (By The Sun I don't mean Jesus Christ; I mean The Sun newspaper.)
No, obviously it would be entirely silly to go up to a religious person and say 'You're unwell", lol.

But PB isn't being coy about saying that in the public square as a discussion point. And why should we be? Isn't it about time that faith is a vice in virtue's clothing is frankly discussed. I think PB mentions "the grown-up's table". As with the Dawkins row, there will always be infantile people and tabloids who will try and make this into a personal thing with ploys of racism or whatever to distract from the discussion itself. No doubt when PB's book comes out there will be an enormous uproar from the religious. Good, it will help publicise and open the debate.
Andre
user 65942292
London, GB
Post #: 9
Oh, I love seeing the religious getting hot under the collar.
Angela D.
user 71491512
London, GB
Post #: 126
Please anyone, would you supply me with the full POSTAL address of Pitchstone Publishing.
(of prof. Kurt Volkon, USA ) would be very much appreciated.
Adrian
KingHell
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 715
Please anyone, would you supply me with the full POSTAL address of Pitchstone Publishing.
(of prof. Kurt Volkon, USA ) would be very much appreciated.
1909 Stillhouse Rd Charlottesville, Virginia 22901-8837

Tel (434) 296-2384
Angela D.
user 71491512
London, GB
Post #: 128
Great! Thank you very much Adrian.
Jason
SweynTUV
London, GB
Post #: 209
Just turned on the radio. It was tuned to Radio 2 and Chris Evans was on and he had some religious bloke on giving us the benefit of his wisdom. Apparently scientific enquiry is all very well but the primary way to know things is just wordless apprehension. When we get that feeling of awe from looking at a mountain "We just know that there is something there" (God or some unseen level of reality I suppose) and we have more to learn from children before they have language than they have to learn from us. Where do people get these ridiculous ideas and what is the BBC doing serving them up at odd times of the day in entertainment programs? These bloody people get everywhere.
Adrian
KingHell
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 725
Go on... you know you want to complain...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints/­
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