addressalign-toparrow-leftarrow-rightbackbellblockcalendarcameraccwcheckchevron-downchevron-leftchevron-rightchevron-small-downchevron-small-leftchevron-small-rightchevron-small-upchevron-upcircle-with-checkcircle-with-crosscircle-with-pluscontroller-playcredit-cardcrossdots-three-verticaleditemptyheartexporteye-with-lineeyefacebookfolderfullheartglobe--smallglobegmailgooglegroupshelp-with-circleimageimagesinstagramFill 1launch-new-window--smalllight-bulblinklocation-pinm-swarmSearchmailmessagesminusmoremuplabelShape 3 + Rectangle 1ShapeoutlookpersonJoin Group on CardStartprice-ribbonprintShapeShapeShapeShapeImported LayersImported LayersImported Layersshieldstartickettrashtriangle-downtriangle-uptwitteruserwarningyahoo

Re: [bostonatheists] Cowards!!

From: Zachary B.
Sent on: Sunday, April 21, 2013 6:50 AM
A principle I think about often, is how important it is to treat individuals and not as manifestations of institutions or belief systems. (To use myself as a case in point -- you know I'm an atheist, but thought I strive for consistency in my various ethical and epistemic commitments, I daresay you'd have a hard time guessing at many other of my beliefs from the simple fact of my atheism.)

Each of the manifold attitudes, beliefs, and convictions that constitute a personality, is the product of a history of influences (religious, academic, social, genetic, etc.) so complex as to boggle the mind. This complexity demands -- or rather, an intellectually honest coming to terms with this complexity demands -- that we not reduce any person to one or ever a few of these factors. 

Keeping this in mind has given me the freedom to be more forgiving and more humble in my interactions with people whose religious or philosophical or political views are different from or opposed to my own. It's this complexity I'm referring to in the shorthand when I say -- I'm sure many of you have heard me say -- that we can allow that people are better than their beliefs."

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy