Comments

  1. Chris Wiggins says

    Have you guys seen the recent film, “Spotlight”. I think it’s extremely relevant to the story you’re commenting on.

  2. Mrs Brisby says

    I love you guys but you really need to get on your production. The audio in this episode is the worst by far and I’ve been watching for over 5 years.

  3. philhoenig says

    Russel briefly mentioned biblical archaeology and the fallacy of thinking that just because one bit of information in the bible is proven to be true, therefore it all must be. I’ve volunteered a few times at the digs at Tell es-Safi, which many people are pretty sure (not quite “there are no fairies” sure, but getting there) is the site of the biblical city of Gath, the home of Goliath. Although fundamentalists may like the idea of the site as more evidence that the bible is 100% true, they’d be less than enthused that’s what’s been discovered (particularly last year’s massive gate) suggests that King David’s Jerusalem did not in any way dominate the contemporary philistine cities like the bible claims but in fact was relatively small and politically unimportant.

  4. Glyph says

    In addition to a monetary donation, I have a couple of tin cans and a length of string here that y’all might find useful…

    All jokes aside, I love your show. I listen every Sunday — you’re my coaches for dealing with irrational and in-denial students. You give me hope that if I were to move to Austin for a job in the education system, I might be able to stay sane. (Would have to eat exclusively at Threadgills, though.)

    Stay awesome!

  5. sopmepoposdowork says

    I can’t understand how sound can be such problem after months and months and months for the show. I have been running multiple voice solutions as they evolved over the last 15+ years for gaming and our in game communication has never been even remotely as bad as the voice chat in the show – nor any online show I have ever seen. I have also admin’d voice solutions for a call center using voip and skype solutions. Nothing was even remotely close to this bad ever.

    TAE sets the absolute bar when it comes to tragically bad audio making the show basically impossible to watch/listen to week in and week out. Every new episode guarantees to have the entire show starting off with sound checks, mic checks, and nothing working. There really isn’t even a “show” to “not listen to because it’s all garbled noise” anymore.

    It’s as if you have religious bigots in your studio purposely sabotaging you – the only plausible reason it could be so bad week after week after week after week.

    If you need help with voice communication please let me know. This is not difficult. Someone there is not doing their job and you are posting videos on youtube that are of less quality than what preteen post with their iphones. There is no way you can watch the recorded show, and then post it on youtube in good conscience. Is there?

    Are you just auto posting anything you record regardless if it is audible or not?

    To get so much viewers and then to post such garbage is cringe worthy at best. Why do you post these videos? Where the bulk of the content is “can you hear me now?” “Ok, next, can you hear me now?”

    You need to fix this. I am an atheist and your show, for the past several months, is an embarrassment to atheists like me that have the balls and take the time to stand up to theists in public. Either fix the bullshit or just turn off the show until you fix it. Posting these tragically inept videos does not help atheists nor will it encourage theists to consider our arguments.

  6. alastair says

    Does anyone have a timestamp for a point in the video for when the sound issues have been solved? It’s a bit hard to watch.

  7. StonedRanger says

    @#2
    Wow, angry much? Its a volunteer run show. They don’t have a giant budget. Yes, at times its hard to watch the show because of the problems. If youre in the Austin area Im sure they would love to have you drop in and volunteer to make the show better. No one is making you watch. If it bothers you that much perhaps you should find another outlet for your time. I appreciate that these people who have full time lives, give a couple of hours of their time on the weekend to do what they do. I wish I had the expertise to help but I don’t. I also don’t live within a thousand miles so even if I did have the expertise im too far away to do them much good. Keep up the good work you hosts and crew because I appreciate the effort if nothing else.

  8. Pikabu says

    I got curious about that Anthony that you are talking about in 54 min of the show. Could someone tell me how can i find more about him and hes show?

  9. says

    #6

    If you’d been paying attention, you’d realize they introduced a new speaker system, so they could move away from headphones. This introduces new technical difficulties.

  10. wook76 says

    What’s the story with the no music during the intro thing? Been like this since they left cable, thought it might have been a glitch or something but it’s on going.

  11. citizen_scriv says

    good grief, am watching at the moment but the comms issues are just excruciating – if I wasn’t a long time viewer / lover of the show I would have given up and moved on ( probably weeks ago ) I really hope you guys can fix it soon 🙁

  12. Volt says

    Hey Guys,
    Long time fan. First Comment ever here.
    Russell has done a pretty good job as host. Each time, he gets a little more comfortable and it shows.
    But on this episode, Russell clearly came across as irritable, nervous, and impatient. If he’s the host… he _has_ to be able to handle little issues like the time-delays & failed connections with a touch more decorum.
    The first caller was obviously attempting to get situated. Then Russell got himself flustered and started to treat the guest caller like a troll. I feel like Russell is content with his presentation as host, but there’s a lot of room for growth and development. (i.e.: something as simple as a clear and warm welcome to the _connecting_ callers… like, “HELLO! You’re on LIVE with the Atheist Experience Show, WELCOME. I’m Russell and sitting next to me is our dear Tracie… Can you tell us your name and where you’re calling us from today?”) Not just “Are you there? Are you there? Yes your on the air. Can you here us too? Ok, what’s are question?
    Side note, I could tell by watching Tracie as this situation transpired, that she kinda wished _She_ could have handled the “troublesome” caller.

    Sincerely,
    Volt

  13. Russell Glasser says

    I acknowledge that I was on a short fuse after technical difficulties made it impossible to go to calls for a long time. In addition, I unfairly came across as sounding harsh on the technical crew, as well as being curt with early callers. I apologize for that.

  14. says

    Great show guys as usual! It’s great watching people like myself, who have been steeped in religious indoctrination, respond to theistic viewpoints in such an informative and well thought out manner. Thanks for all your help

  15. Mike Davey says

    Regarding the guy who called in and wanted to talk about Islam with his friend, what he should say is:
    I’m not worried about the people who don’t believe the terrible things in scripture, I’m worried about the ones who do.
    His Muslim friend cannot speak for all of Islam that they “do not believe that”. There are many people in Islam who believe every single word of the Koran and believe that if the Prophet said it, it is absolutely true and the best way to live ones life.
    This is the problem with having terrible things in scripture, eventually even in the most moderate places someone will believe the worst parts of holy scripture. His Muslim friend may not, but if it’s in the Koran you can believe there are many Muslims who absolutely do believe it.
    One example comes from the subject discussed on the show, adult men having sex with children. It’s common in Islam countries for the marrying age to be 9, and sex is allowed as soon as a girl has a period. This is specifically because the Prophet consummated his marriage with his 9 year old wife, who he married when she was 6. This is similar to some of the Mormon sects, except it’s much more widespread in Islam. His friend may not believe this, but this is very common in the majority of Islamic countries.
    So while the Muslim friend says we can’t say anything about what Muslims believe, in fact it is he who can not. We can point to evidence of what many Muslims believe. What the majority of Muslims in the West believe is very different from the majority of Muslims in Muslim or mostly Muslim countries. If the caller wants to know how many in Islam believe what, he can do so (to a degree) by looking at the many Pew Research polls. These polls tell us many in Islam hold truly frightening ideas.

    Many Muslims in Western European countries hold ideas that I and many others consider to be at best poor, at worst dangerous:
    What Normal Muslims Think – And Europe Fails to Understand:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYAcLudBbhg
    The above is a link to a video of a meeting of Muslims in a Western European country. They are saying they are regular Muslims, they say they are not extremists, not unusual, and they say if the Prophet says it, then it is not only true, but the most perfect way of doing something possible. They go on to say that if the Prophet mandated the stoning of people as punishment, then that is the correct thing to do and the most perfect method of punishment possible for that crime. He asks who agrees, and the entire hall agrees with him (raises their hands).

    I know not every Muslim believes the same thing. I also know enough Muslims believe things which are not good for society to be worrying, especially to many people in their society who suffer because of those beliefs. I also know many want everyone in the world to follow those beliefs, and some are willing to do anything to ensure that happens. They, like some Christians, believe it’s God’s command that they ensure everyone does believe as they do and they spread their belief.

    We can see how conservative Islam has spread in the past half century. Many Muslim countries once were moderate but have become highly conservative. This is the result of a deliberate plan set in motion by conservative Muslims in various countries.

  16. nahuati says

    Tracie and Russell – I really enjoy The Atheist Experience! Thanks for all who make the show possible. It is appreciated.

  17. Thonord says

    I hope Tracie and Russel watch this episode on Youtube, and really watch the whole thing through the last moments.

    It will be beneficiary for the talent to see the show from our end, when the show goes technically bad..

    I’m not complaining. I’m trying to be constructive.

    Tom

  18. JB74 says

    I was there live and the show was great, Russell and Tracie! They’ll get the technical problems worked out. I know I couldn’t handle things as well as you both do, considering it’s live.

    Thank you for all the hosts and crew do for keeping the show going. It means a lot to people like me who don’t have another outlet.

    🙂

  19. Minus says

    Great show. Just want to tell you how much I personally appreciate the hard work that goes into doing this thing. I produced a local public access tv show for a while. Gad what headaches. Please ignore the thankless few who think it is their duty to point out problems about which you are already tearing your hair out.

  20. anotherjason says

    Amusingly, I think Russell sounds even more annoyed by the technical problems than us listeners feel. 🙂

    Serious question: do you come into the studio early before the show to test things out? If so, do you find things generally work ok up until the point you start recording, and then it all falls apart?

  21. Cousin Ricky says

    Regarding the discussion with Keith in Staten island:

    Yes, it’s irritating that I have to give the standard agnostic disclaimer when I’m talking about anthropomorphic and supernatural gods, even though I don’t have to about, say, the tooth fairy. But I still don’t feel right calling myself a gnostic atheist. I call myself a “tooth fairy agnostic” as a convenient shorthand for what Tracie was explaining.

    I have also seen the expression “teapot agnostic,” although that term is harder to explain, since Russell’s teapot isn’t as well known as the tooth fairy among the religious.

  22. beakster says

    Guys, I know you are all volunteers but it seems like it’s been way too long to properly get your audio set up working properly. This seems like it would literally be a 1-day job for a professional to hook up everything and get things running smoothly, which if you are having trouble, I would urge you to consider hiring an actual professional sound guy to come in for a few hours. If you made a little fundraiser to pay for the costs of this I think people would be willing to donate.

    Also, even if your sound setup was perfect, the act of taking calls via skype is just obviously a hit and miss situation. Most people either have terrible internet connections, or awful microphone setups, (I think one guy said he was calling in from an ipad). Those two problems combined just doesn’t make for a good audio quality at all.

  23. Conversion Tube says

    Pikabu #9, there is also a public and closed/private Street Epistemology group on Facebook that you can join which Anthony is very active in.

  24. says

    I wish to provide an update to the audio issues for this eisode. Up until this show all audio issues were the result of one of two things:
    1) Technical issues we didn’t know to check for.
    2) Operational issues we didn’t know to check for.

    For this episode, 3 things went wrong and they were all the result of human error. I know because I made all 3 errors.

    #1) We have been planning for a while to replace the hosts headphones with a speaker in the studio room. Last week (not Sun but the prior Sun) I passed a Radio Shack on the way to the studio and stopped in to buy the wire and connector I needed. As our setup is slightly different from the old studio, we were not sure it would work so I got cheap stuff to allow us to do an experiment. It worked. You mau notice that in the prior show the hosts were not wearing headphones. I then had a few houses on Sat to stop by and mount the speaker on the wall and run the wire in a way that hides it. I ran out of time and rushed out to an appointment I had without retesting the speaker. Unfortunately (unknown to me) I must have pinched or broken one of the solid wire conductors because on Sun the sound from that speaker was badly distorted.

    2) On Sun to demonstrate the speaker was working I launced YouTune on our Skype PC to generate an audio signal, started a music video, then opened other screens in front of it. The source of music was then “out of sight and out of mind”. So much so that I didn’t remember it at all until we heard tbe music “bleed over” from the second caller

    3) The prior time we could not take calls it turned out a configuration within Skype had changed. We use a USB Bheringer audio device to interconnect the Skype callers voice into the sound mixer. Skype needs to know the “microphone” is the audio in from the mixer and the “speaker” is the audio out to the mixer. The device reverted to the “microphone” being the mic jack on the PC. That is why we could hear the caller but the caller could not hear us.

    Anyway, I am personally embarrased by the audio issues of this episode because none of it was new to us.

    The new phone system arrived yesterday and getting it installed is now contigent upon my work schedule.

    We are currently scheduled to install it Fri, but we may need to slip it until next week as I now may need to work Fri.

    Once it is installed and THROUGHLy tested, we will run one last show on Skype in order to the tell the world how they will contact us the following Sun.

    For those of you outside the US you will still be able to call us through your PCs, but it won’t be Skype. On an existing webpage or perhaps a new one, there will be a big button labeled “Call the show” or some such, that anyone can use to call the show from their PC. The only caveat is this feature will require you to run Chrome or Firefox.

    I apologise for the audio issues of this episode. I am personally responsible for them.

    We are making progress.

    I thank you for your patience and keep the faith……

  25. says

    Just to add that I am not at all involved in the tech end of the show–BUT…we are constantly adding new things to try and improve the show. One issue was that we have to wear head sets because we can’t hear the callers in the studio–like we used to over at the Access Studio. As a result, this week, the crew very kindly surprised us with a new speaker they’d wired so that we’d be able to hear calls in the studio and not have to wear ear buds. It did not work out as planned, but try to bear in mind, it’s an improvement…even if it takes more than one week to get that improvement up and running. The crew took proactive steps to add something useful for the hosts, but any time you add a new widget…you take a risk on something going wrong. In the end, we just went back to the ear buds for the episode.

    But as far as the question about why we can’t get it working even after so many weeks–bear in mind we’re swapping out for better equipment and new ideas just about constantly. So, it’s not like same system week after week, and it just mysteriously implodes one week or another. Upgrades are happening often.

    Also, above, just to say I really do appreciate the constructive feedback, but telling me to go back to watch the show, without telling me what specifically you want me to notice about it, isn’t “constructive.” Please feel free (as some did) to say what it is you felt was mishandled, and offer feedback about how it could be better handled. “Go watch the episode and you’ll see what we see” doesn’t really help me.

    I don’t mind the feedback or the suggestions. But sometimes if people know what’s happening behind the scenes, it can explain at least a few things that may seem mysterious and problematic when you’re just watching online. I understand. And hope this helps.

  26. vince says

    At one point Tracie says most people that are in a denomination don’t say they are against religion. The fact is I hear this at our church at least once a week. With Christians that believe in grace alone for salvation and not by any works, what they are saying is they don’t believe in works or rules to please god, a lot of those people are also heavy on the “relationship” with god instead of rules. I agree with them that works don’t please god, I don’t like them expressing it that way because the bible does say what true religion is in James chapter 1 and it does not say it is a bad thing.

  27. Thonord says

    The reason I suggested watching the whole show was that this must have been the worst show you have produced.
    There is also the element og different experiences. One comment in this thread was:” I was there, and thought it was greate”. Obviously the individual couldn’t hear the quality of audio altering from poor via bad to non existing. Not only from the caller, but Tracie and Russel too who fell out from time to time. The camera once shifted to show only Russel while Tracie was talking, while the audio was missing. I doubt that anybody noticed that for a long periode of time. Not the guy in the audience, obviously not the talent and not the controle room, but very obvious to us abroad..
    Its my oppinion that only by watching the whole feed, all problems will be visible and audible.

    So, am I somebody who loves to complain? No, I’m somebody who loves and enjoys the show! Someone who will keep on doing so:)

  28. Kevin Carney says

    There was a bit when the stream stopped, but the recording didn’t, so what’s on YouTube does not have that missing bit.

    We’re not sure why the stream stopped and had to be manually resumed.

  29. Monocle Smile says

    @vince
    That’s doubletalk. You try to evade the “religion” label to (rather dishonestly) separate yourself from those people Everything you do that’s god-related falls under any reasonable definition of religion. By drawing a divide, you’re attempting to absolve yourself of their crimes while continuing to enable the worst parts of religion. Replacing a blindly held belief with another blindly held belief is just as bad, if not worse, then maintaining the first belief. False beliefs exist solely to be destroyed.

    I agree with them that works don’t please god, I don’t like them expressing it that way because the bible does say what true religion is in James chapter 1 and it does not say it is a bad thing.

    Read James again. This is borderline double talk. Also, I’m going to ask again…why do you believe any of this is true? Not sure anything else is worth discussing; complaining to atheists about some imagined divide between you and those people is going to fall on deaf ears.

  30. vince says

    @Monocle Smile,

    I was not complaining about anything. She made a comment that I thought could use some further explanation. Christians say this a lot and they mean something specific in Christian circles. I don’t think Tracie understood this from her comments. I actually agree with you, its all religion as we define religion. When Christians say I am not into religion, they mean they don’t believe rule following pleases god. They are not really saying they are not religious as you would define it.

  31. Monocle Smile says

    @vince
    I was a believer for 21 years and not once did “I’m not into religion” ever mean anything remotely close to that. In fact, I find it utterly laughable. It’s just an excuse to ignore some “rules” and not others, because lots of people understand that most of the tenets of Christianity are abhorrent and barbaric.

  32. Monocle Smile says

    @vince
    Okay, that’s fine. I have no problem with that. I wish you’d address the rest of my post, but oh well.

  33. vince says

    @Monocle Smile,

    I am not sure what else you want me to respond to. There is no need to discuss my belief in god because I have already said it is not rational. I am also not here to prove god exists. I cannot, I think I explained this on the last thread.

    You said:

    “False beliefs exist solely to be destroyed.”

    Why? What do you base this on? Do you feel you have the right to destroy others false beliefs?

  34. says

    Do you feel you have the right to destroy others false beliefs?

    I’ll agree with you that false beliefs exist because they exist, not for some cosmic reason that they be destroyed. But, MS is more stating his intention than a fact.

    And, your question is loaded. We don’t have any more *right* to destroy false beliefs others hold beyond their right to either listen or not listen to us. If they listen to us, and their false belief is destroyed, it was not because we had a right to do it without the consent of the person who heard it. Now, why would we invite people to listen to us point out their false beliefs? Because we think holding as many true beliefs and as few false beliefs, as humanly possible, is good for humanity. Are we 100% right about this? Probably. Science is the best process we know of at arriving at true beliefs and humanity is where it is today based on that philosophy (prayers didn’t end small pox, Jesus didn’t create the Internet, priests use a phone to call the Vatican and not telepathy). I say “probably” because humanity can do many good and many bad things, regardless of the truth or falsity of their beliefs. But, armed with more true beliefs than false ones gives us a much better shot at doing the right thing.

  35. says

    I have already said it is not rational.

    This is going to sound a bit rude, but I don’t buy that. I think you do have a rational reason for your belief in god, or you wouldn’t hold that belief. What if I told you: “I believe faeries exist for very irrational reasons that I’m not going to tell you. I don’t care if you want to know my irrational reasons and I’m not here to convince you faeries exist. But, I’m going to hang around here with all of you faerie deniers and tell you how you’re all completely wrong about what faerie believers think.”

  36. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Vince

    I am not sure what else you want me to respond to. There is no need to discuss my belief in god because I have already said it is not rational. I am also not here to prove god exists. I cannot, I think I explained this on the last thread.

    This particular place is not here to cater to your every whim. In this particular place, we have adopted a particular culture of critical thinking and skepticism. If and when you make particular claims, or express particular beliefs, we are going to ask you to explain yourself. If you express that you do not want to explain yourself on a particular topic in this particular venue, I do not care, and I will ask you to explain yourself anyway. Especially when it relates to religion, because this is The Atheist Experience blog.

    So, the choice is thus yours. You can leave. You can stay here and explain yourself. You can stay here and never explain yourself while continuing to express your religious beliefs, and in that case we’ll continually pester you to explain yourself, which sounds like it’s unpleasant for everyone all around. I cannot make you leave, and currently I have no desire to make you leave, even if you persist in being annoying by expressing your religious beliefs without explaining your reasoning behind them.

  37. Cousin Ricky says

    @vince – The problem with quoting James at relationship-not-religion people is that they are the very same people who wish James weren’t in the canon. (Of course, James is in the canon, but we’re talking about wishful thinkers here.)

  38. vince says

    @changerofbits

    “If they listen to us, and their false belief is destroyed, it was not because we had a right to do it without the consent of the person who heard it.”

    Good Point.

    “Science is the best process we know of at arriving at true beliefs and humanity is where it is today based on that philosophy”

    I can agree with this mostly. We gain a lot of what we think is truth by experience. An example is when my daughter tells me she how she is feeling, I believe this as the truth based on my past experiences with her. Maybe science can figure out how she is feeling but that is not how we determine those kind of truths.

  39. vince says

    @EnlightenmentLiberal

    “This particular place is not here to cater to your every whim. In this particular place, we have adopted a particular culture of critical thinking and skepticism. If and when you make particular claims, or express particular beliefs, we are going to ask you to explain yourself. If you express that you do not want to explain yourself on a particular topic in this particular venue, I do not care, and I will ask you to explain yourself anyway. Especially when it relates to religion, because this is The Atheist Experience blog. ”

    Well my first post was about a statistic one of the hosts used that I thought was wrong. I though the skeptics would want to talk about that, but I was quickly asked why I was a believer. My second post was about something Tracie said about how the word religion is used. I expressed what it meant in my experience as a believer to try to give more information. So I have never started a post trying to defend my beliefs or thought I could. I make a separate post about why I believe.

  40. vince says

    @Cousin Ricky

    James is a difficult book if you look at it alone without the rest of the bible.

  41. vince says

    A couple people want to know why I am a Christian. The short answer is I believe because I have faith. I did not believe or actually just didn’t care about the idea of god until I was around 26. I became a Christian at 32. The bible says in Romans 10:

    How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

    I heard and studied gods word and god gave me my faith. So one of the reasons I believe is that I have faith in the first place. Eph 2 says:

    For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

    I believe this is what God has done for me. Without god giving me my faith I could not believe. I know it is circular and I am not here to defend it. I am simply stating why I believe after being asked.

  42. Monocle Smile says

    @vince
    Save the pity party. We DID address your very first post about some “wrong statistic.” It was not presented as some absolute, dead-on fact; it was presented to make a point that you appeared to miss. You got multiple replies about it. Whining like this is hilariously dishonest.

    I’m entirely with EL. You don’t get to demand that we not poke at you (you ARE a believer on an atheist blog, after all), especially when your posts not only defend your religion based on meaningless technicalities (if thats,) but your responses to our inquiries have been extremely confusing.

  43. Monocle Smile says

    @vince
    I posted that before your comment #48…and now my posts goes doubly so. That is perhaps the most baffling “conversion” story I’ve ever heard, and I seriously doubt you’re giving all the relevant information.
    Why would anyone care what some old book says? Clearly there’s something else at work here. You didn’t just decide to walk into a church one day for no reason and then get ensnared, especially not at the age of 26.

  44. says

    We gain a lot of what we think is truth by experience. An example is when my daughter tells me she how she is feeling, I believe this as the truth based on my past experiences with her. Maybe science can figure out how she is feeling but that is not how we determine those kind of truths.

    Yeah, we’re kind of stuck with interpreting the experience that our senses allow us to examine. And there isn’t a scientific widget that can measure our thoughts or feelings (which is almost definitely for the best). I will say that I think you can probably think of some ways in which your daughter would lie to you about her feelings, for any number of honest reasons. I don’t know how old your daughter is, but my 6yr old daughter tells me she’s feeling really full when there are only vegetables left on her plate, but can almost instantly become hungry again when she learns we have some cookies for desert.

  45. says

    Without god giving me my faith I could not believe.

    How does god give you faith? This is an honest question, coming from an ex-Christian. Only different in that I was raised as a Christian, and then became an atheist about the same time you became a Christian (we were both born-again, just going in the opposite direction).

  46. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To vince in 46
    That seems reasonable. I don’t care enough to look back to see if that’s a fair description of what transpired earlier, but out of context what you wrote in that post is reasonable.

  47. vince says

    @Monocle Smile, 49

    Where did I demand not to be made fun of? I guess I don’t see the point in discussing my faith when you want some kind of proof god exists and I have none. Can you explain why that would be productive?

  48. vince says

    @Monocle Smile, 50

    “That is perhaps the most baffling “conversion” story I’ve ever heard, and I seriously doubt you’re giving all the relevant information.”

    It was not a conversion story. I thought you wanted to know why I have faith. so I explained that. So yes, there are many details and events through the course of the 6 years. You keep saying why would anyone care about what an old book says. Well, some Christians including myself believe god wrote it, so that’s why we care.

  49. vince says

    @changerofbits

    Its true my daughter could lie to me. But my experience is that she does not. My daughters are 14 and 11 so the situation is a little different from when they were 6. I do have a 4 year old boy who does exactly the scenario you stated. My 11 yo daughter may not tell me how she is really feeling, but that is because she doesn’t like to talk about those things too much, you really have to get it out of her so to speak. My point is that through experience with them I understand truth about them that I don’t get scientifically. Truth is acquired by different means.

  50. vince says

    @changerofbits

    “How does god give you faith? This is an honest question, coming from an ex-Christian. Only different in that I was raised as a Christian, and then became an atheist about the same time you became a Christian (we were both born-again, just going in the opposite direction).”

    I don’t know the answer to that. Are you asking the mechanism of how god gives me faith? I don’t know how he does it only that the bible says he does when you hear the gospel. As to why some people hear and god doesn’t give them faith, I don’t know either. Maybe he does and they reject it but the bible indicates he gives faith to some and not to others.

  51. Monocle Smile says

    @vince

    I guess I don’t see the point in discussing my faith when you want some kind of proof god exists and I have none. Can you explain why that would be productive?

    Why would it be productive to show a believer that they believe for bad reasons and help them leave their faith behind and establish better ways of thinking? Are you really asking that? I think that’s kind of the point.

    I thought you wanted to know why I have faith. so I explained that

    But you didn’t actually explain anything. “I believe because I have faith” is a content-free sentence, in my opinion. It’s not anything other than a rehearsed one-liner.

    You keep saying why would anyone care about what an old book says. Well, some Christians including myself believe god wrote it, so that’s why we care.

    This isn’t an explanation, either. Do you actually understand what I’m saying? I’m not convinced. In addition, you could prove that a god wrote the bible and I still wouldn’t care. So this “explanation” is a non sequitur as it stands.

  52. JB74 says

    @32 (Thonord) I’m the one who commented earlier that I was in the audience, and I thought the show was great. Us in the audience did witness the audio problems they were having. But as someone who has watched many of the episodes dating back to the beginning, I realize this is a minor bump in the road that they will get ironed out. One of the nice things about watching the show live is you get to see the hard work that is put into the show by both the hosts and the crew. When you realize this, and also realize the great work this group has done and continue to do for Atheism in general, you know they will work hard to get the problem fixed.

    By the way, I’m a girl, not a guy. 🙂

  53. vince says

    @Monocle Smile

    “Why would it be productive to show a believer that they believe for bad reasons and help them leave their faith behind and establish better ways of thinking? Are you really asking that? I think that’s kind of the point.”

    So you ask me “am I really asking that?” to a question I never asked. I don’t get it. My question was how is it productive if you want proof god exists and I readily admit I don’t have any. I realize it is not “good” thinking. You don’t need to convince me of that.

    “But you didn’t actually explain anything. “I believe because I have faith” is a content-free sentence, in my opinion. It’s not anything other than a rehearsed one-liner.”

    I thought I told you that before I answered your question. You seem to want me to build a case for faith so you can knock it down. The problem is I don’t have a case for faith that you will accept. And I want to be clear I never had the intention of posting here to convince people of gods existence, you and others asked me to tell you why I have faith. It’s ok if you don’t like my answer, but I did answer it.

    “This isn’t an explanation, either. Do you actually understand what I’m saying? I’m not convinced. In addition, you could prove that a god wrote the bible and I still wouldn’t care. So this “explanation” is a non sequitur as it stands.”

    I never was trying to convince you of anything. You asked the question twice so I answered it. Your question wasn’t if you cared but why anyone would care. You changed the question again in your response.

  54. Conversion Tube says

    Vince 45 and 46.

    Using our senses to determine facts about reality like whether your daughter is sick is still using a “soft” version of the scientific method.

    We develop beliefs because we understand they are a guide to our actions and decisions. We also have goals and we recognize which processes (beliefs and decisions) were successful at helping us meet our goals.

    You understand that when your daughter claims to be sick you probably consider her behaviour over the last few hours and decide whether her actions may lend to clues that lead to that story line. You intuitively analyse and measure what you already know about being sick and what expectations you would have if it was really true. Is she pail, does she constantly want to be laying down. Or is she claiming to be sick, while simultaneously playing a Xbox game with great precision and skill. Did she refuse to eat the last meal because she “Wasn’t hungry”. Was she moody and irritable the last few hours?

    These are all using our senses but it’s a soft version of the scientific method or pragmatism.

    Beliefs drive decisions and actions.
    Those actions have consequences.
    Consequences are objective and can be analysed.

  55. vince says

    @Conversion Tube

    I see what you are saying but I don’t think I fully agree. I don’t really scrutinize her claim of being sick, I believe her when she says it, but over time I may notice she is not acting sick and question it. I may think over the past day and think if I noticed anything that indicates her being sick. But I am not trying to prove her right or wrong, I assume she is sick.

  56. corwyn says

    @64 vince:

    You started with a reasonably high prior probability that she was telling the truth. Then you collected more data, to which you assigned a likelihood, and did an update on your confidence level, taking into account the prior probability and the new evidence and its likelihood, and other possibilities. Assuming you did the math correctly (at a rough level), this is just an application of Baye’s theorem, a fundamental tool in the scientific method.

    Congratulations, you did science.

  57. vince says

    @corwyn

    You can describe it like that but it is not accurate. We don’t think like that and where is the math you are talking about? I started with a 100% trust that my daughter is telling me the truth and saw no evidence (not that I was looking for it) to the contrary. Relationships are just not like that. What if I told my wife I have a reasonably high confidence level that I can trust you. I 100% trust my wife and that is what I tell her. If she ever fails at that, I will forgive her and trust her 100% again. I can congratulate myself that I did life with others, not science.

    Have you ever trusted someone without any reason to? or gone with a gut feeling on someone or something?

  58. Monocle Smile says

    @vince
    How do you function? You do realize that con men bank on your extreme naïveté, right? You live in a fantasy world where people don’t generally suck. News flash…people generally suck.

  59. vince says

    @Monocle Smile

    When you have a relationship with people you can determine if you can trust them. Are you saying after 18 years of marriage I should be skeptical of anything my wife says? Or my 14 yo daughter that has never lied to me past the age of 8 or so that my default position is mistrust. I said people I have a relationship with not strangers. I would ask how do you function in a relationship with that attitude? News Flash….Any relationship you have you will get hurt at some point, but most meaningful relationships in life are based on trust. Not trust but verify or mistrust.

  60. sopmepoposdowork says

    I have to say that after my rant about the terrible (understatement) technical problems on this show (that are recent relative to the shows’ lifespan and the amount of years I have watched) – and my first post ever to this blog, I was basically done watching. You posters with your “angry much” and “auto worship for AE” replies were entertaining to read and also do nothing to resolve the problem. You never have, and that’s fine.

    So here we are 2 weeks later – I had not unsubbed yet so the new show popped up in my recommends – and it seems dedicated to technical issues. The show (that I am about to watch) is called “Tech Episode”

    Wow.

    I have not watched it yet but I just wanted to show up again and say that I feel heard (even if I played less than a .000001% in the decision to do this). I understand that I presented a very harsh observation of the show that has been building in frustrated bias over the last year or so, but I feel my observations were fair.

    If I offended you, good. You keep calling in and telling the hosts how much you love them on air – and I’ll keep returning to the forums to complain when the show is falling to shit. Now off to watch the tech episode!

  61. sopmepoposdowork says

    @Monocle Smile

    The difference is: I matter. You don’t.

    Only you can change that. Good luck.

  62. corwyn says

    @66:

    I am just repeating what YOU said you did, in proper mathematical language.

    You can claim all you want that you aren’t using science, but you betray with each statement that you are (although badly).

    my 14 yo daughter that has never lied to me past the age of 8 or so that my default position is mistrust.

    You trust your daughter BECAUSE she hasn’t lied to you (that you know of) . You have a belief based on evidence, this is science.

  63. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Emphasis added:

    You trust your daughter BECAUSE she hasn’t lied to you (that you know of) . You have a belief based on evidence, this is science.

    <3

  64. JD and Co. says

    @66 Vince

    Have you ever trusted someone without any reason to? or gone with a gut feeling on someone or something?

    Myself, I try very hard not to trust without reason, especially if the matter at hand is important. My gut has turned out to be wholly unreliable. Sometimes it’s worked out, and other times it’s crashed and burned big time (leading me to wish I’d done more thinking and less gut checking). What people call “gut feeling” is sometimes composed of wishful thinking, and other times it’s a thought process running underneath the conscious radar, based on past forgotten details of similar situations. Either way, I don’t think you can go wrong examining closely why you’re being swayed one way or another.

    Relationships are just not like that.

    Your relationship may not be. My relationships certainly are *very* much like that.

    @68

    When you have a relationship with people you can determine if you can trust them.

    How does this determination work if not with some sort of evidence?

    Are you saying after 18 years of marriage I should be skeptical of anything my wife says?

    Not anything and everything, but yeah, my opinion is that married people should exercise some skepticism with each other–more or less depending on past actions, but always some. I do, and I’ve been married over 25 years, not because I suspect deliberate deceit (I have 25 years of data points indicating a high level of trustworthiness), but because people can be mistaken, or make hasty pronouncements without thinking it over, etc. But also I’m aware that people change. There’s even the remote possibility that over the last quarter century, even despite my skepticism, that my spouse has completely buffaloed me. Unless you never read the paper or watch the news, you have to know this happens every day.

    Or my 14 yo daughter

    You sound like a nice guy with a nice family. But I really feel you ought to consider that parenting teenagers is the time to especially sharpen your bullshit meter. I hope she’s a completely lovely child who will always deserve your trust, but teenagers are notorious for their hormones and emotions overcoming their integrity. If there’s something serious going on and your child is lying to you about it, blindly trusting them is the exact wrong thing to do.

    I 100% trust my wife…If she ever fails at that, I will forgive her and trust her 100% again.

    Hypothetically speaking, how many times would she have to fail that you would continue to forgive her? And have you ever had a friend who trusted their spouse even when their spouse abused their trust over and over again? Didn’t you ever wish that they would…you know…look at the evidence that’s staring them in the face?

  65. phil says

    On the difference between religions and cults…

    At the head of every cult is someone who knows it’s all bullshit. In religions that person is already dead.