Many times, I have heard the religious say to the opposition in an argument "You do not have an open mind and that is why you cannot see why my faith is the truth".

 

Now, this to me has always been an interesting statement. It is interesting because it is the "faithful" in fact that are the ones that are obviously not "open minded".

 

Let me explain. To me, being "open minded" means to critically look at both sides of an argument, compare the validity of each side based on prior knowledge and/or research and then come to a conclusion from there.

 

Now it becomes quite apparent, that the non religious, have done their due diligence and have given a great deal of thought to the argument of the existence of supernatural beings based on various religious scriptures, philosophy, history, reason and logic as well as, science in order to come to their conclusions.

 

However, the religious, more often than not, admit that they have never studied or better yet, researched the opposition's side of the argument.

 

They fail at exactly what they accuse the opposition of "to be open minded".

 

Now surely if one was to spend the time and really think about the issue of the existence of supernatural beings. One would overwhelmingly come to the conclusion that they are nothing more than myths created by man themselves. (Ask a religious person what is a soul and you will quickly see their lack of knowledge even on their own “beliefs” let alone their ability of reason). Moreover, do the research and review/test for the existence of these beings. To this date there has never been a proven divine miracle, proof for the existence of: a soul, heaven, hell, ghosts etc… .

 

Furthermore, I see that the trend of the religious is that they are mentally (for lack of a better word) lazy. I’m not saying that they are not intelligent or mental misfits incapable of learning but rather what one would call the “intellectually barren”.

 

You could say that the education process failed them but that is more than likely not the truth. Anyone that wants to learn these days can pick up a book, scour the internet or talk with others to enhance their mind.

 

So why is this? What does it take to educate these people to be able to critically think? Would this be an exercise in futility? Has our species come to the point that our technology has increased our mortality rate to the point that there is an over abundance of the mentally lazy?

 

I’m interested to hear your thoughts.

 

Peace

Views: 118

Tags: Critical Thinking, Education, Open Minded

Comment by Luis Contreras on February 24, 2012 at 5:48am

I guess that's one conclusion you can come to as to why there is an abundance of people who are "mentally lazy". On this topic i would like to talk more. I strongly feel that a majority of the population is just stupid but that may be to strong of a statement but if i were debated on this subject, i feel like i can easily change my mind.

And on the subject of being open minded, reminds me of a time where i got into a heated conversation with a friend of the family and she accused me of being ignorant and i inturn called her ignorant. I have since learned not to confront people about their believes especially people i consider close. Good thing we still all talk to each other normally but no way am i getting into that topic again near them even though god always comes up i just keep  my mouth shut. To this day i still remember her calling me ignorant; it hurts.

Comment by Logicallunatic on February 24, 2012 at 10:31am

The laziness stems from the fact that all the answers are already there in the infallible holy books. Why bother lifting a brain cell when it's all laid out for you... like a feeding a baby.

Religion gives answers that may not be questioned... it's a kind of intellectual cancer.

And yes, the religious mindset is the definition of close-mindedness. They are so certain in their absolute authority that they refuse to properly acknowledge the possibility that they could be wrong.

Open mindedness is healthy.. but too much and your brain falls out. A line needs to be drawn somewhere. Bullshit is bullshit and labelling extremely improbable things as 'open minded' is intellectually dishonest. 

Comment by kris feenstra on February 24, 2012 at 6:36pm

The 'open-minded' line is difficult to wield.  If a person actually is close-minded, I doubt they'd be open to the criticism.  Indeed, if I am close-minded, I'm not aware of it.  I would think it would take somewhat special circumstances to get me to open my eyes.

More importantly, telling someone they aren't being open-minded isn't an argument.  If they want to bow out of the conversation, they should just bow out.  It's on them, not you.  Other wise, it's just an ad hom.  The last time I encountered this, I replied, "It's possible that I am -- I can't rightly say --, but that doesn't address my argument and that's what you need to refute here."  I pressed the issue enough that they admitted they couldn't address my argument.  While disappointing, at least it was honest (though I did get the impression that they thought I was being a dick).

While I don't see this open mind issue as something that intrinsically falls along the religious/ irreligious divide, there probably is some correlation.  In many cultures, atheism is a departure from the norm.  There is a process in moving away from faith that requires some level of deliberation.  If a person is raised to be a Christian (for example), questioning their faith may result in remaining Christian or it may result in abandoning their faith.  Not questioning their faith, however, will almost always result in remaining a Christian (I think).  There's a selection factor for being atheist in that scenario which does not exist for being Christian.

I've grown up in social circles where lots of people weren't raised to be religious, though.  In that case, it's the same deal: they can remain atheists without really needing to examine their views too deeply.  Just anecdotally, I haven't really found atheists to be more or less open-minded than religious people on average.  They are, perhaps, just less opinionated because they haven't had as many doctrinal views crammed down their throats.

Comment by Matthew on February 24, 2012 at 10:07pm
Reading into the other side? Half of them don't even read the bible...
Comment by Logicallunatic on February 25, 2012 at 5:11am

Maybe, but what about Muslims? I would hazard a guess that a lot more Muslims read the Koran than Christians read the bible.... on average.

Comment by Matthew on February 25, 2012 at 2:07pm
They read it, I think it makes them shut out others even more. That's why I kind of think christians are easier to deconvert. I have to admit that when I see religion the first thing that comes to mind is Christianity, so I apologize for that.

Muslims, they have tenants in their religion to lie to convert people, I think it's called taqquiyah and I see it done soooo often, like telling people Darwin and Neil Armstrong were Muslim, etc... I find Muslims more closed minded than Christians.

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