You are either not logged in or not registered with our community. Click here to register.
 
December 06, 2016, 04:31:27 AM

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Click here if you are having problems.
Default Wide Screen Beige Lilac Rainbow Black & Blue October Send us your theme!

Hark!  The Herald!
Holiday Issue 2016

Wiki Blogs Dicebot

Author Topic: Ask An Apathiest Anything  (Read 1442 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Ask An Apathiest Anything
« on: March 09, 2010, 07:13:29 PM »
Inspired by another thread- who I wonder if they are trying to kick around some poo on purpose, I decided to have a chuckle by starting my own.

So, go ahead. Ask an Apathiest anything.

A little bit about the point of view being represented-

A simple way to describe Apathiesm is to compare it to Agnosticism. If Agnosticism is answering the question of whether or not there is a god with "I Don't Know", Apathiesm is responding with "I Don't Care". And really, I don't. If there is a deity, they seem to have gone out of their way to always give Plausible Deniability toward evidence to their existence. And since there is no practical difference between a god who is strictly hands-off, a god who is deliberately covering up the evidence of their existence, and there being no god at all then I must ask why the answer to the question of whether or not there is a god matters.

Politically I tend to lean anti-authoritarian and liberal, but the only people I really despise politically are those "my way or their way, nothing in between" types. So at the moment I hate Republicans with a fiery passion, but mostly because they encourage neo-conservatism and religious fundamentalism. Return to the 50's and 60's style Republican, the guy who grumbles about the national debt and how much universal health care would cost then goes back to building rockets, and they'll definitely be respectable to me again- and there's a good chance I'd vote for them. Don't try to sell me a Reagen, sell me an Eisenhower.

Also, getting a graduate degree in Physics in may. A Masters this time. Trying to transfer to another school for my PhD as my college now only has one astrophysicist on staff. I also teach math and science over the internet, and am looking for teaching jobs at the community college level.

So, any questions?
« Last Edit: March 09, 2010, 07:15:14 PM by TheVillain »

Offline Strungintandum

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2010, 07:26:29 PM »
I wouldn't have thought an attempt at being informative would be taken as purpouseful poo kicking. That said I do have a question; would the virtues of the apatheistic position be useful to a debate which seems to encompass a great deal of modern thought and political policy? Certainly and discussion of the truth of unicorns can be easily met with a "who cares" position, and rightfully so, but the question of the existance of god seems to have more wide ranging consequences than a question of whether single horned goat creatures exist.

That siad, I am also curious as to what virtues a position of apathy when it comes to answering questions of existance could lend toward a teaching career. I realize you are being tongue in cheek here but I thought I'd throw this out there to dissuade the "poo kicking" charges.

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2010, 07:39:29 PM »
Ah good points, and perhaps I may have been a bit harsh with the "pureposeful poo kicking" judgment call but I am being a bit tongue-in-cheek admittingly.

And you seem to hit something quite close to my point. Yes, the existence of the question of whether or not there's a god does have a larger range of consequences of the question of the existence of unicorns. My point is there's shouldn't be. You can't prove logical negatives and there is as much unbiased and empirical evidence to suggest the existence of god as there is the suggest the existence of unicorns. So, until that changes, the existence of god has as much practical effect on our lives as the existence of unicorns. Which is to say none at all.

As for how a position of Apathy matters in teaching, I have to say I'm probably the best qualified to teach about a God then- as I would reach a level of Impartiality about the subject most only dream about.

And, in all seriousness, I would teach Science. I know atoms exist, and can prove it. I know light exists, and can prove it. Supernatural creatures like god and unicorns are, by definition, unprovable- so why bother messing with them at all? Especially in a Science Class.

Offline Strungintandum

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2010, 07:51:28 PM »
I agree wholeheartedly, which is why I often chose to approach the question of belief vs non-belief instead of the question of does god exist or not exist. As you pointed out, the second debate is entierly useless. You are correct in saying that the question of god's existance shouldn't matter, but it does, in a very profound and extreme way. I believe the best way to combat this is not with apathy toward the question but through information. (Again I do wholly realize you were being tongue in cheek but I wanted to explain why I chose it as a topic of possible discussion.)

I also agree that the question of a god's existance is wholly useless in a science class. However, in my experience with science classes in general, the question almost inevitably comes up. If and when it does, would a position of apathy toward the question do anything to inform? I'll grant that brushing the question aside and going on with the lecture could prove prudent, but perhaps attacking the question of the question in as brief a manner as possible might prove useful toward fostering a greater apperciation in the uninformed for science. Just a hypothesis, it would need testing.

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2010, 08:06:07 PM »
My usual approach is to go for "informed Apathy". To not only say that it doesn't matter, but to explain why. Not to show that god didn't exist, but to show that God was by definition Supernatural- and as such an intellectual dead end at best for science. I never went for showing that there was no god, I just went to show that due to the supernatural nature of a god "he" is an unnecessary for our understanding of the universe. From there Occam's Razor does suggest that the simplest explanation that accounts for this is that there never was a God- but since logic can't prove negatives this really isn't much more then a suggestion.

I taught physical science at a community college for a couple semesters as a side job, at a community college known for producing business and religion majors. This was good enough for my students- more of them were upset that I could explain in less then 5 minutes exactly why their precious "Intelligent Design" didn't count as a scientific theory then this topic.

Offline Strungintandum

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2010, 08:21:22 PM »
Then it seems we both have the same idea about how to approach the question of the question. I took your "apathy" to mean that you disregarded such questions without explanation. The way you've described it seems very prudent and useful. Thanks for indulging me.

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2010, 08:24:33 PM »
Any time.

Offline Farmboy

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2010, 05:41:51 PM »
OK. If you don't care, why did you start this thread? ;)

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2010, 05:46:23 PM »
I don't care if there's a god. I do care about a good chuckle, and if there's a chance to educate I don't mind taking it.

Appreciate the bump though.  ;D

Offline rick957

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2010, 07:12:22 PM »
"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."  Or sir, in this case.  :)

Aislin beat me to my point, but there's more to his response than you seem to acknowledge. 

It seems to me that by starting this thread, you've already defeated your own position.  Only someone who cared about the topics you claim not to care about would be motivated to publicly solicit discussion of those topics.

I'll bet you have an ongoing and highly personal interest in religion, politics, and philosophy.  How else could you have formed strong opinions on those subjects and learned to express your opinions so clearly?

Quote
I do care about a good chuckle, and if there's a chance to educate I don't mind taking it.

Your desire to foster discussion of these topics, and even your tendency to find humor in them, just make your level of interest in these subjects more apparent -- quite the opposite of actual apathy or disinterest.

Or am I just being a smart-ass?  :)

Offline Xenophile

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2010, 07:17:44 PM »
Or am I just being a smart-ass?  :)

Yes. Yes, you are.

Offline rick957

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2010, 07:20:40 PM »
 :P

Online Doomsday

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2010, 07:31:03 PM »
"How you feeling Apathiest?"
"Meh."

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2010, 07:35:44 PM »
Ah, but just because I don't care if there's a god doesn't mean I don't care about the reasons behind that apathy- does it?

*This is quickly becoming a smart-ass off*

*I like*

Offline Caeli

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2010, 07:36:18 PM »
You guys. Seriously. If you cannot add anything to the discussion and only intend to be sarcastic or try to be a smartass, then don't post.

Be civil or this thread will get locked.

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2010, 07:37:38 PM »
I was under the impression we were being civil- just silly.

Offline Caeli

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #16 on: March 11, 2010, 07:41:41 PM »
Wasn't referring to your posts.

But please try to at least stay within the intentions of the original poster. :P Silly is fine, but pointless spam is not.

Offline rick957

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #17 on: March 11, 2010, 08:35:41 PM »
My apologies, Caeli, I didn't intend to make inappropriate comments. 

My initial post here made an honest, serious point, in spite of the last line, which was just a bit of playful self-effacement.  My second post here was also intended as nothing more than a playful response to a humorous remark from someone else. 

I do appreciate whatever sort of policing or quality control it is that you and other people do on these boards, and I wouldn't want to see every thread turn into pointless, off-topic exchanges.  But, prior to your first comment, Caeli, I only see 3 of the 13 posts that didn't include comments immediately relevant to the topic of discussion.  And, in spite of some serious subject matter, the lighthearted tone of this thread was established in the very first line up there, not to mention the witty title.

If there are expectations in this area of the site about tone or content of posts, I'm perfectly willing to cooperate, but I'd appreciate some clarification about what is considered appropriate.  Thanks.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2010, 08:39:14 PM by rick957 »

Offline Farmboy

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #18 on: March 12, 2010, 10:29:42 AM »
How about the concept of life after death? Do you care if it's true or not? (Personally, I don't believe in death, per se, but I'd rather elaborate on a different thread.) Certainly you must believe there is no life after death, otherwise you'd have to care, wouldn't you?

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2010, 05:50:11 PM »
Similar to the concept of God, there's really no evidence of life after death and an afterlife doesn't seem necessary for the universe to function- so odds are that there isn't one.

But beyond that, no- not really. There's really not enough information to make the call for sure. I have noticed most religions can have all of their important religious rules with "don't be a dick", so I figure that if there is an afterlife then I at least won't be completely screwed if I follow "don't be a dick". But really, being a dick is a dick thing to do- a wise man said that "any done out of fear of has no moral value". So if I was just not being a dick because I was afraid of where I'd end up in the after life it would kind of be against the point.

So, in conclusion- meh, not really. I think worrying about the after life is against the point of what religion should be, just be excellent onto one another and things should be fine.

Offline MasterMischief

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #20 on: April 05, 2010, 01:59:50 AM »
*raises hoof*

Would you care if someone attempted to force their belief in god upon you?  Can you remain an apathiest when confronted in such a way?

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #21 on: April 22, 2010, 02:33:35 PM »
That implies I don't care in a lack of emotional connection sense. I don't care due to a careful evaluation of philosophical points, and from them reaching the conclusion that it doesn't matter.

Offline MasterMischief

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #22 on: April 24, 2010, 02:22:30 PM »
Raises hoof again.

Do you contemplate why you are here, that you may have some purpose?

Offline TheVillainTopic starter

Re: Ask An Apathiest Anything
« Reply #23 on: April 24, 2010, 03:03:11 PM »
I do, and I recognize that without any physical evidence that I won't get anywhere. So while such talks are fun, at the end of the day that debate just killed some time and gave a few laughs.