"Begin at the beginning,and go on till you come to the end: then stop." (Lewis Carroll, 1832-1896)

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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Location: Australia

I am diagonally parked in a parallel universe. Like Arthur Dent from "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", if you do not have a Babel Fish in your ear this blog will be completely unintelligible to you and will read something like this: "boggle, google, snoggle, slurp, slurp, dingleberry to the power of 10". Fortunately, those who have had the Babel Fish inserted in their ear, will understood this blog perfectly. If you are familiar with this technology, you will know that the Babel Fish lives on brainwave radiation. It excretes energy in the form of exactly the correct brainwaves needed by its host to understand what was just said; or in this case, what was read. The Babel Fish, thanks to scientific research, reverses the problem defined by its namesake in the Tower of Babel, where a deity was supposedly inspired to confuse the human race by making them unable to understand each other.


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Friday, October 27, 2006

One Woman's Rapture Is Another Woman's Hood Ornament

Quotes of a similar type:

  • One man's magic is another man's engineering.
  • One man's theology is another man's belly laugh.
  • One man's loss is another man's gain.
  • One man's justice is another's injustice; one man's beauty another's ugliness; one man's wisdom another's folly.
  • One man's folly is another man's wife.
  • One man's remorse is another man's reminiscence.
  • One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter.
  • One man's spam is another man's art.
  • One man's cult is another man's cult. (Haha)
  • One man's frankness is another man's vulgarity.
  • One man's treasure is another man's trash.
  • One man's pork is another man's poison.
  • One man's diamond is another man's paving tile.
  • One man's thorn is another man's thistle.
  • One man's prison is another man's castle.

These sayings suggest that everything is just a matter of personal opinion. They suggest that there is no objective reality and that we all just exist in our own separate subjective realities of our own making, and that each opinion on reality has as much validity, credibility, weight and veracity as the next opinion.

Firstly, whether or not each of us have a personal view of the world, does not make each personal view reasonable. So how do we measure, assess, and evaluate information?

Human beings do not individually think the same, process information in the same manner or come to the same conclusions. We don't think the same way because we are all individually products of not only our environments, cultures, education etc, but we are also individuals according to our genetic prescriptors.

Having stated that we are all individuals with individual potentials, how do we assess or test information for veracity? One way to do this, and the most successful way of examining or critically analysing information so far, is through the use of reason. So, how each of us come to conclusions and the steps we use to arrive at those conclusions can be examined and tested according to reason and the laws of logic.

In the case of argument, reason is the ability of the human mind to form and operate on concepts in abstraction. Reason is used in accordance with rationality and logic in order to come to a decision about propositions, ideas, concepts, or beliefs.

Reason is the process of thinking which allows one to differentiate between a logical argument and a flawed argument. For example: If it can be shown that there is a flaw in one of the thought steps, then the conclusion is also likely to be flawed.

If, an individial lives in a world where they believe that everything is possible, it could be argued that they are essentially dooming themselves to a life of stasis, paralysis, and intellectual immobility.

Without the use of reason, everything we can imagine becomes a possibility as there is then no method to test for what is reasonable.

Therefore, if you claim to believe that everything is possible, what is to stop you from believing that if you think of a terrible human-eating monster that it will appear? And if you believed that it is possible for a monster to materialise simply through wishing it, you would try to not think, just in case your thoughts miraculously created said monster on top of your computer monitor.

Many things that humans can imagine, are considered to be highly improbable and are summarily dismissed through the use of reason.

What is also interesting is the notion that the above sayings only offer two choices. The choices of loss or gain, spam or art, treasure or trash, thorn or thistle. This type of thinking encourages people to think in black or white, either this or that, and is an example of the false dichotomy or the false dilema.

Flawed thinking often results in flawed conclusions. Just as flawed beliefs can result in human hood ornaments.

"The way to see by Faith is to shut the Eye of Reason." - Benjamin Franklin

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Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

We should remember, however, that logic and reason are no guarantors of (capital "T") Truth.

All they can do is help us ensure that our arguments are consistent and our thinking is clear. Which is still, I think, extremely important.

28/10/06 1:10 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Haha - funny vid.

28/10/06 2:10 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE arthur:

"We should remember, however, that logic and reason are no guarantors of (capital "T") Truth."

I agree with qualifications.

I don't claim to be able to discern the "capital T". That would require me to believe that there is a truth or truths which are unchanging and non-falsifiable.

Theists tend to believe in the existence of a "capital T", a neverending, unchanging, absolute perfection which cannot be falsified.

I concern myself with "lowercase ts" which remain true for as long as they are not falsified.

28/10/06 3:00 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

Obviously, I doubt the existence of a "capital T" :)

28/10/06 3:04 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He he he! Points of view uh?

28/10/06 4:38 am  
Blogger rebeleyeball said...

Please take a moment to read After Pat's BirthdayThis poingant story was written by Pat Tillman's brother, Kevin. This is a must read. Please tell everyone about it.

28/10/06 5:04 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

Hehehe... Nice vid...:)

"T...T...t...t What begins with T? Ten tired turtles on a tuttle-tuttle tree." - Dr. Seuss...:)

Thanks for that link to "After Pat's Birthday", stirring stuff...

28/10/06 9:31 pm  
Blogger pissed off patricia said...

How the hell did you know about this monster sitting on my computer? Can you see him from where you are? He wasn't there until a couple of days ago when I just happened to think about what if, and sure as hell, there he was. ;)

28/10/06 9:57 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE patricia:

Don't worry, just imagine him away and "poof".. there he goes.

29/10/06 10:49 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Hey, I recognize that video. That's from HBO's 'Six Feet Under'.
Hysterical. Awful to laugh at, but oh, so funny.

30/10/06 5:21 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

Yup, you got it :)

30/10/06 6:09 pm  
Blogger Stardust1954 said...

Hey, I recognize that video. That's from HBO's 'Six Feet Under'.
Hysterical. Awful to laugh at, but oh, so funny.

That is one of the funniest "dying" scenes I have ever seen. Like KA says, awful but oh, so hilarious at the same time! Reminds me of the story I heard in the news when my husband and I were living in the hellhole state of Arkansas when he was in the Air Force in the 70s. A woman was said to have climbed out the window of a speeding car because she thought she saw Jesus walking down the side of the road and thought it was "rapture time". (It was a hitch-hiking hippy dude.) Her husband was trying to hold her in her seat and drive at the same time...she finally won out and threw herself out the window, bounced off down the side of the road and was killed.

31/10/06 3:12 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE stardust:

It is sad to think that some people will be so deluded as to accidently kill themselves in such a way. I can and do feel sorry for them, but it really does point to the danger of such a belief.

31/10/06 4:25 pm  
Blogger Stardust1954 said...

It is sad to think that some people will be so deluded as to accidently kill themselves in such a way. I can and do feel sorry for them, but it really does point to the danger of such a belief.

Beep - religion is a kind of psychosis which includes hallucinations, delusional beliefs and delusions of grandeur. Human knowledge and fear of their impending death causes this psychosis.

On a separate note, you may have noticed that GifS is experienced some technical problems. It appears we may have had a hacker troll. If you get any "visits" from the Dallas Christian College asking for you to answer questions for their Philosophy class and a guy named Spence...or any other troll for that matter...beware!

GifS will be back up and running and whoever did this needs to be turned into the feds. I got an email from another blogger who said that a few atheist sites have been attacked by hackers recently so just wanted to warn you and your readers. It's good you use comment moderator, I may start using mine as well.

31/10/06 11:35 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Who Would Jesus Hack?

1/11/06 12:26 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE stardust:

RE: "Beep - religion is a kind of psychosis which includes hallucinations, delusional beliefs and delusions of grandeur. Human knowledge and fear of their impending death causes this psychosis."

I think it encourages and is exacerbated by a feeling of existential angst. (without trying to sound too Freudian)

Existential angst - The fear that NOTHING can be known with any real surety creates an overwhelming sense of helpnessness; which is partially moderated and alleviated by displays of masochistic supplication to imaginary forces.

I would liken it to a pack animal displaying its belly to the alpha male in a gesture of subordination, except that it is an invisible, non-existent alpha male to whom the supplication is offered.

If I had to provide it with a fallacy name, I would call it the "woe is me fallacy".

I did notice that gifs was down. It appears that freedom of expression is reserved for those who wish to freely express a right to agree; not a freedom to dissent.

This is of no real surprise to me, as it is analogous to the authoritarian structures that some of these people represent.

In other words, the freedom to kiss ass is not the same as the freedom to suggest that the ass smells.

Thanks for the tip about Dallas Christian College etc. I have comment moderation turned on and I hope that gifs is up and running again soon.

1/11/06 12:46 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE arthur:

Supposing that jesus existed, he would hack jewish law. (According to judaism)

1/11/06 1:23 am  
Blogger L said...

ha ha ha ha! I LOVE that video

8/11/06 12:15 pm  

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