Saturday, February 16, 2013

Dogs and Mormons

I was playing with my dog today and I noticed a striking similarity between her behavior and LDS behavior.

I will draw a comparison between myself and the dog and between the church and the members, respectively.  In this case, I am the governing authority over the dog such as the church is the governing authority over the members.

Being a normal dog, she gets excited whenever someone visits, running to the windows and looking out to see who's out there.  Sometimes I tease her by asking "Who's here?" and laughing as she runs to the window every time to check it out.  No matter how many times I do it, she faithfully runs to the window even after I have fooled her 100 times.

I take my teasing a bit further by having her look out the window, where she sees no one, because no one is there.  However, I knock on the wall to imitate a visitor knocking on the door and she goes crazy to find out who is there.  Even though she can see outside and there is clearly no one there, she takes my knocking as evidence that someone is there.

The comparison I wish to make is how members act like this dog when it comes to defending the church.  Even though there is no one there, any small amout of evidence trumps the obvious.  Even though god can not be seen or heard, any type of "evidence" is taken to prove that what can't be seen is really there.

My point is simple, that evidence can be faked.  It can be mis-interpreted.  Evidence of something is not proof of something.  Evidence of my knocking is not proof that someone is outside.  Members of the church often take evidence, such as proverbial knocking, and interpret it as truthfulness of the gospel.

Mormon defenders might have the occassional bit of evidence here and there that puts Joseph Smith or the church in good light, but if they are going to revert to evidence to support the church, then they must be objective and look at all the evidence.  Unfortunately, members only want to see the evidence that works in their favor.  Anything else is brushed off as a lie made up by the devil.  This is not objective.  It is cherry picking and that is a tactic which is highly unfavorable.  Those who engage in cherry picking are never taken seriously.

My dog denies what her own eyes tell her and relies on the false evidence that I am providing for her. People are no different when defending their beliefs!

Many people will look at a tree and say, "The only way that tree could be there is if god put it there.  Therefore, god exists."

The evidence is the existence of a tree.  What does it prove?  That there's a tree. 

Linking the existence of the tree to reach the pre-determined conclusion that there is a god is a logical fallacy.  I could use the existence of this tree to support any radical claim that I want to make.  I could claim that the tree exists because the Flying Spaghetti Monster put it there; therefore, the FSM is real.  This is extremely illogical and yet believers use it all the time to "prove" their points.  They are really proving nothing at all except how ignorant they are.

So the next time someone shows you evidence of something, ask yourself, "Is this just knocking?"

It brings a whole new meaning to the term "dogma".

30 comments:

erin said...

Perfect analogy!

msd1111 said...

I have recently been researching Mormonism because my lovely daughter started "dating" a Mormon young man fresh off his mission. It's getting serious fast and I'm getting concerned --as I know the time is coming when I'm going to be forced to (as your article about your dog illustrated) open the "door" and show him the truth... No one is there. I actually believe in God, and the Jesus of the Christian bible--- but all that knocking and the exhausting chasing & barking and back & forth stuff is just teasing from the doctrine that humans have added to the scriptures. God is love according to their bible--- and love is just there- it's not behind closed doors- you don't need to listen for the constant cues stirring you up into an ax cited frenzy... It's just there. The only door and knocking comes from that internal urge felt drawing us to see truth---- Truth may knock but it's a one time thing--- you don't repeatedly have to wait at the door and its a calming experience. TRUTH saves--- it's science and scripture. Scripture itself doesn't say that all non Christians or non Mormons are damned-- it says ANYONE WHO DENIES TRUTH is missing out on peace in this life and hurting other people. And the parts of us that are okay with that (hurting others and ig oring truth) or choose the lies to gain things of this world will not inherite the "kingdom of love"--- The word kingdom means, at its rawest level: The way things work, the government -- what governs the inner parts of us--- When we follow truth and acknowledge LOVE as OUR highest governing power We inherit the kingdom of "God" we become involved in the way things work. Blah blah blah--- I'm sorry for the sermon. I just wanted to tell you that I saw wisdom in what you wrote and I think you are onto the truth. I encourage you to avoid the anger, instead pity those who are deceived and who are deceptive because they are ultimately missing out on the abundant life that you are now able to live. Put "love" above everything -----remember that the word LOVE is more about charity than anything else--- and get active in the government of yourself. If you choose to doubt the possibility of an afterlife- that is understandable. But the TRUTH is not erased from you by the lies of the religious leaders--- if you were "baptized" into "Jesus" then your mind has been opened to sense what is TRUE and what is untrue--- they can't distract you from that "sense" anymore. I don't mean in some fairy tale way "your mind has been opened..." I'm speaking scientifically, its psychology-- our brains change physiologically in response to specific focused thought--- the act of participating in some of the "stuff" you were led to participate in during your mormon life literally created changes in your intellect. You now have an awareness (at least subconsciously -- ironic I know) of your ability to choose your own beliefs --- beliefs are essentially what drive all of our behaviors--- many "normal" people have no concept of any separation between thoughts that pop into their heads and who they are--- if they think "something" they assume that indicates what they are..... Where as in reality- thoughts come into everyone's head that are not our chosen beliefs or in harmony with what behaviors we want for ourselves. We have the ability to cast down the thoughts that we are not in agreement with--- where the "normal" or typical person gets confused by such thoughts & often adopts all of them resulting in behaviors that cause them separation from LOVE. Oh okay-- I should stop here-- I'm actually boring myself with all this. Good post-- I'm going to go back & read more now. Thanks :) Follow me on Instagram @mamadusty1111

Mormon411 said...

Hi msd1111,

That is quite a lot to respond to and honestly, I have no idea what point you're trying to make.

The Mormons may have added to the scriptures, but even going back to the fundamentals of what the Bible teaches doesn't make it TRUTH. It's just a book with words printed on the pages. It tells incredible stories of talking animals, food falling from the sky, magic tricks, war, genocide, rape, drunkenness, slavery, human sacrifice, cannibalism, pregnant virgins, dead people coming back to life, etc. It is not truth. It is a compliation of fairy tales and myths.

My greatest peace in this life is giving up all that nonsense and accepting reality. I no longer deny evidence for the sake of faith. Yes, I know I just wrote a post on evidence. But I don't cherry pick the evidence to support my views. I look at the evidence and use it to determine my views.

And the evidence says: the stories in the Bible are all made up... not a word of truth in there.

The fact is, I am happier and more at peace than I have ever been since I gave up all that nonsense.

I don't need the Bible to tell me to love other people and to not hurt them. I don't need the Bible to tell me that stealing is wrong. I don't need church in order to give service to other people. I don't need religion. In my view, all religion does is suppress people's minds and impede progress.

It has no benefits at all.

weston krogstadt said...

Ruff Ruff!

Mormon411 said...

Bark away at the sky daddy who isn't there!

weston krogstadt said...

I thought about this post last night. And this is what popped into my mind thismorning: I actually enjoy chatting with atheists because they are open-minded, however, their open-mindedness is also their downfall in conversations like this one. Let me explain . . . You believe in stuff much much much crazier than the stuff in the Bible. I know this from years and years of experience chatting with atheists. Now, you might not admit what you believe on this blog, but I KNOW it's in your brain because you are a smart guy. Every atheist I have ever become close with believes in some kind of Chariots of the Gods/ Ancient Alien philosophy. You saw 2001 a Space Odyssey? That stuff. You know what I say is true: "Perhaps aliens came down and had intercourse with Astrolopithicus Afarensis?" Now maybe you don't believe in the Ancient Alien theory, but maybe you believe in something stranger than that. I know you believe homosexuality is genetic, which is a direct contradiction against Darwin's theory of Natural Selection, is it not? My point is, ALL human beings believe in stange paranormal/fantasy things, ALL of them, including you. Yes I believe Jesus rose from the dead, is that any stranger than believing homosexuality is genetic, passed on through genes of heterosexuals? Is it any stranger than believing Neanderthal or Cro-Magnon or whoever got it on with aliens?

senigami said...

wow weston, just wow. I'm an atheist and your whole alien rant makes me think that you are 1 brick shy of ... a brick. Seriously, you talk about atheists having hidden weird theories which I have never ever heard anyone talk about and yet your theory is just as far out there. The difference is that I don't have a crazy theory and yet you have just shown us yours. If that is the mind of a believer, give me the cold hard facts any day.

weston krogstadt said...

senigami, we both know you believe in weird stuff. Quit hiding behind that atheist mask and spill them beans.

weston krogstadt said...

Atheists all believe in crazy theories, that's just part of being an atheist, you belive in all of this crazy wacked out stuff but you are afraid to talk about it because you can't handle being laughed at. While I am very comfortable with anyone and everyone laughing at me. I can handle it, you can't.

Mormon411 said...

It's hard to imagine stuff stranger than the Bible. Talking animals.. You believe in the Bible and yet admit that it is crazy.

I'm going to have to side with senigami and tell you have I have no idea where you get these ideas from.

As far as a "gay gene," I don't believe in one just because I want to. I believe in one because science has discovered and documented it. I did have that question of "wouldn't being gay be a trait that would quickly die out if evolution was real since homosexuals don't typically reproduce for obvious reason?" It's a great question and one that deserves special attention. Perhaps I'll write a post about it soon.

I believe in crazy things because I'm a smart guy. Sorry, but that's just a poor argument.

I've never heard of the alien theory (and I use the term "theory" very loosely here). But it sounds insane, whatever it is.

I have always freely stated that science does not yet have all the answers. How did life come to exist on this planet? There are suggestions but, as far as I know, no answers. Saying "I don't know" is better than making up a crazy story, which is exactly what the Bible is.

So, I know that being Mormon, you just know you are right and everyone else is wrong. I was that way once too. It's actually quite liberating to give up all that elitist thinking. You don't know what's in my brain, as much as you think you do.

The whole idea of becoming an atheist is to STOP believing in weird nonsense. To accept reality and give up myths and fairy tales.

So honestly, if you want to poke and make fun of how "crazy" our "beliefs" are then, honestly, look in the mirror. You admit that you believe in crazy things, so you have no right to point fingers, eh?

weston krogstadt said...

I don't think what you belive is crazy, but I do believe that an objective third person would think it was crazy. A human being evolving from an amoeba? That is no crazier than a talking donkey. It just seems normal to you because you belive it.

Mormon411 said...

The difference between my beliefs and yours is that mine have overwhelming scientific evidence that is ratified by people all over the world. Yours simply requires faith, and faith is the act of believing in something which has no evidence.

I don't base my beliefs on what I want to be true. I base my beliefs on scientific data, observation, testing. On my side bar are a few links to some evolution websites. Go read them. They are very fascinating. As soon as you can learn to expunge magical thinking out of your head, the beauty of science (including evolution) becomes amazingly clear.

When you accept REALITY, there is no more need to defend your beliefs. If you truly believed Mormonism was true, you would not need to defend it. You wouldn't need to argue and make round pieces fit in with square ones. In my world view, there is no need to rationalize my beliefs so that they fit in with proven data. When your belief IS the data, then no justification is required. You should try it. It is beyond liberating.

But you can only find that piece of mind when you want it badly enough. If you're happy believing in myths and stories that completely contradict everything we know to be true, be my guest. It makes zero difference to me. But having been on both sides of the fence, I would choose the atheist side a million times over, even if it meant I had to be starving and homeless.

weston krogstadt said...

Reality consists of a world in which Billions of human beings believe in a Supreme Being, and Billions of human beings HAVE believed in a Supreme Being, and Billions of human beings WILL believe in a Supreme Being. Reality is a world in which radio waves and television waves and satellite transmissions fly through the air unseen unheard and unfelt, but they still exist. And like little ants on an ant hill, there are a few atheists out there who say "We are the biggest and the badest Sons of Bitches in the world, we know it all!"

Mormon411 said...

Yes, Weston, reality does consist of billion of people who BELIEVE. We have been through this before. You are using another argument that is a logical fallacy. Just because everyone believes it, does not make it true. Thousands of years ago, it was universally believed that the earth was flat. Did that make it so? Belief has nothing to do with reality.

I wonder why I even bother to keep responding to you because you don't seem to even read my words. I have NEVER stated that atheists know everything. In fact, I have stated that I am very comfortable saying "I DON'T KNOW."

One of the best things about giving up religion is this idea that I am always right no matter what. Unfortunately, Weston, it is you who has this delusion that you are the badass bitch who is always right. You even know everything about what I believe and the whole world. You are truly an arrogant dude.

Serious case of the pot calling the kettle black...

And the difference between radio waves, which can't be seen, and your god, who also can't be seen, is that every person with a radio can tune in and hear exactly the same thing and concur that a very specific message was sent. With religion, nobody agrees on anything. Why are there 10,000 different Christian churches? Because, it's a big cluster f*ck of people who have no idea what they are talking about.

Because it's all made up...

weston krogstadt said...

Bull $hi*, Religions believe in 95%the same thing. Don't kill, don't steel, don't rape, love is good, parents are good, forgiveness is good. All of these good virtues came from religion. Without religion you get A-holes like Stalin and Mao who murderer tens of MILLIONS of people in one century. There is a God, but even if there were not, religion is the best thing to ever happen to the human race. We don't have to imagine a world with no religion like John Lennon's song, we have seen it first hand with Soviet Russia and Communist China and Cambodia under the Khmer Ruge (spelling?) Religion is good, God is good. They help the world be a better place. Millions of bodies pilled on top of each other is a bad bad bad thing. That is what you get with atheism, lots of dead bodies.

Mormon411 said...

All of those virtues of doing good to others are a basic human instinct. They do not come from religion. They come from evolution; from the fact that if ancient humans did not band together and help each other, then no one survived. If what you claim is true, then that means I go around killing and raping my neighbors. Not so at all. I help people when I am able. I am honest. I am true to my word. Atheism does not equal pure evil and wickedness as you seem to think. And more people have been killed in the name of god than whatever atrocities you are referring to. If religion is good, then why did 9-11 happen? That attack was religiously motivated.

The bottom line is this: religion doesn't cause people to be good and atheism doesn't cause people to be bad. There are good and bad people in both groups and so pointing at the bad ones is not a fair way to judge the group.

I don't judge religious groups based upon what their "bad" members do. I'm smart enough to know that their behavior doesn't reflect the group. So Stalin killed millions... that doesn't mean all atheists do that. You are trying to use yet another logical fallacy: if one does it, they all do it.

weston krogstadt said...

Just so I'm sure about the rules on your blog: It's perfectly fine for people to say all kinds of anti-religious, hypocritical sarcastic BS, and I'm supposed to just take it, but if I shoot back then that pisses you off because you hate religion? I just want to get your biased rules figured out.

weston krogstadt said...

Do you just expect me to act like a little monkey you can toy with? Because you and Brian strike me as the kind of guys who would spend hours poking a monkey with a sharp stick and then become horrified when the monkey jumps on your shoulder and takes a bite out of your face.

I enjoy your blog, but I'm kind of conussed how you would get so distraught just because my insult was much more damaging than Brian's was. I think you know if he had just asked the question without being a smart-ass I would have answered it with no problem.

Your hatred of religion has made both of you very unreasonable.

Mormon411 said...

No, you're not supposed to just "take it", but you are supposed to at least act grown up about it.

Where did I act distraught? I simply suggested that you clean it up a little. I simply suggested that you act the way that your religion dictates that you should.

weston krogstadt said...

So now you're going to get all smug and indignant? You compare Mormons to dogs and then have the audacity to say "You need to act the way your religion dictates"? What is that, some kind of a sick joke? You liberals sure are amazing people. Admit it, you're only mad because my insult was much better than his was.

Mormon411 said...

This was not a post comparing dogs to Mormons. It might appear that way to someone who is looking for any reason to be offended.

Yes, your religion dictates that you turn the other cheek, not curse and swear and call people awful names.

weston krogstadt said...

Mormon411, I get the feeling you don't like me much anymore. What about Las Vegas, Bed Bath & Beyond, rollerblading in the park? Are you now going to pretend we never did those things?

weston krogstadt said...

OK I'll start following the Bible now if it will make you feel better, including the laws in the Book of Leviticus, I'll start stoning homosexuals to death.

Mormon411 said...

Don't forget to stone your own children to death as well when they rebel. That is also a commandment in the OT. Clearly, god hates disobedient children just as much as homosexuals.

weston krogstadt said...

You are also a bit of a stick in the mud Mormon411, if this is a version of someone who has been set free from the tyrany of Christianity, I'd hate to see the uptight judgemental Mormon version of you.

weston krogstadt said...

"Tyranny" I bet you were more fun back when you were Mormon and doing what you were supposed to do.

weston krogstadt said...

"Judgmental" Mormonism has not helped my spelling much. Get it, that was called humor? Lighten up, why are you being such a tight ass?

Mormon411 said...

It's not that I don't like you. It's just that you aren't really interested in an intelligent discussion. You prefer to just throw around insults and stereotypes. What's the point in debating with someone who already knows everything?

weston krogstadt said...

Because I called him a "dicksucker"? When I was in the army I was called dicksucker cocksucker and various other homosexual titles on a daily basis, sometimes hourly, it's not that big of a deal, and I think you're only using it as an excuse to disengage with me.

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