Kate Shaw wrote:Hailey wrote:Kate Shaw wrote:I have mentioned before that I do not jump into discussions about curling (for example) to opine that curling is stupid, tedious, not a real sport and anybody who watches or plays it must be an idiot. And I have wondered why so many people feel constrained to jump into religious discussions with the same kind of opinions. Here I differ from Stephen in that I do not believe atheists and agnostics have anything to contribute to a debate on a doctrinal point, any more than I would have anything to contribute about curling to a curling thread save my dislike of it and my belief that it is not a sport.
I am sorry that you are feeling that way Kate. Genuine I am.
You raise a good point though perhaps when people start threads on skiing or baseball people should post negative things about those sports ad nauseum and remind them about how their focus should be on the middle east or masturbating.
I think that Stephen as a protestant minister comes from a different angle though. He probably has more interest in seeing them convert. My sense is that you just want atheists and agnostics to leave you alone.
Only when we are discussing doctrinal points -- for example, in the current thread about whether Jesus was or was not celibate (a hypothetical question at best), the atheists and agnostics have already jumped aboard to argue that He isn't even real. If they would refrain from doing this, I would be content. Perhaps the atheists and agnostics also feel constrained in the movies to point out loudly that Superman can't really fly and Doctor Who is an actor?
I agree that technically this is what they are doing by "jumping aboard," but your earlier posts painted the picture that they were being violent and obnoxious about it. That is your perspective; mine is that they are being entirely civil so far and not trying to sink the thread in anti-religion rhetoric. In fact it looks like a couple of folks who otherwise seem agnostic, atheist or indifferent are weighing in to discuss the subject on the merit of what is known via the Bible without actually making much claim as to their own stance - I'd say that's close to objective as one can be on the subject of religion.
I guess I just fail to see how you find fairness in saying that they shouldn't be able to speak up at all (by saying "I wish they wouldn't post), when by posting on this site you are fitting yourself among the Free Speech crowd. That means freedom for anyone to speak up on any subject no matter how well-reasoned or factually baseless their opinions may be.
In other words I understand where you are coming from, I just don't agree that anything should be done about it.
To quote you and respond directly:
Kate Shaw wrote:I do not believe atheists and agnostics have anything to contribute to a debate on a doctrinal point
I believe anyone who reads a piece of literature and analyzes the content for internal consistency and for insight into the author and the times the author lived in, can contribute as much as anyone else regardless of whether they believe the literature is truth or fiction.
I don't believe dragons and wizards are real, and yet I can hold a civil discourse on the nature of dragons and wizards based on the information available.