Suggested Guidelines for this Section

Xarog

Honorary Master
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1. In your first post, state any assumptions that you want the other people to make before responding. As an example, let's say you wanted the merits of creationism as opposed to evolution. Such a discussion would be rather difficult to get around to if an atheist comes along and starts attacking the bible. Of course, the attack is more or less fair, because people who argue creationism generally use the bible as a starting point. But on the other hand, how can you discuss creationism with your fellow Christians when there's an atheist wrecking your thread?

The answer is easy, simply put an "Assume that God exists and that the bible accurately represents His nature." or something to that effect; the point is, make it clear where you want the boundaries of the discussion to be.

2. Debate the position, not the people. Insults don't prove your position. Worse, they just make you look like an idiot. So stay away from them.

Well that's all for now. I'll add suggestions as they come to me. Feel free to discuss my suggestions as well as add your own. :)
 

bwana

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I'd like to point out that this section is not intended to be solely for theological debates and hopefully we'll be able to explore various philosophical ideas.
 

rpm

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Thanks for clearing that up Bwana. And please also note that this is merely a test. If we find that there are personal attacks, blasphemy etc this section will be deleted. We received complaints about such issues and we can obviously not allow this.
 

Xarog

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I'd like to point out that this section is not intended to be solely for theological debates and hopefully we'll be able to explore various philosophical ideas.
Yes, I also hope that it will service a wide variety of topics beyond theology. However, what I said applies to them to.

For instance : Let's presume that it was my belief that 'reality' is nothing more than an illusion. If someone was having a debate regarding the value of the scientific method... let's say for arguments sake that they had a problem with the principle of falsification..., then I could hijack the thread by attacking the assumptions which science makes when attempting to deal with reality (i.e. the assumption that there is an objective reality and that our perceptions can reliably interpret this reality for our conciousness). All I would have to do is to argue that one's senses are not infallible and that they can be tricked, and that there is no way to prove that they are not being tricked -

The result would most likely be that the thread would quickly degenerate into discussing the merits of my position instead of the position of the person that created the thread.

Of course, some assumptions are easier to see and accept than others - I doubt anyone who saw reality as a mere illusion would bother to get stuck into a debate regarding falsification. The reason I posted that guideline was simply so that the Christians, or Scientists or whoever could follow the proposed rule, and in doing so, at their discretion, have a discussion with other Christians or Scientists or whoever without having to worry about militant atheists, while at the same time allowing this section to cater to more than just Christians or Scientists or whoever.

Thanks for clearing that up Bwana. And please also note that this is merely a test. If we find that there are personal attacks, blasphemy etc this section will be deleted. We received complaints about such issues and we can obviously not allow this.
I can understand not tolerating personal attacks and so forth, but I'm a little concerned over the inclusion of blasphemy in your list. Surely to a believer, an atheist declaring that God does not exist is blasphemy? If that is the standard, then I really don't see the point of even going to the trouble of creating this section.
 
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ajax

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I can understand not tolerating personal attacks and so forth, but I'm a little concerned over the inclusion of blasphemy in your list. Surely to a believer, an atheist declaring that God does not exist is blasphemy? If that is the standard, then I really don't see the point of even going to the trouble of creating this section.
Agreed it is not blasphemy. But if I for example call Muhammad a weed smoking drunkard whose favourite pastime is threesomes, then that is blasphemy. It would also be a comment that adds nothing to any debate and that only serves to mock and stir up emotional responses such as name calling.
 

Xarog

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Agreed it is not blasphemy. But if I for example call Muhammad a weed smoking drunkard whose favourite pastime is threesomes, then that is blasphemy. It would also be a comment that adds nothing to any debate and that only serves to mock and stir up emotional responses such as name calling.
I find that hard to accept - some would say that Christianity is little more than an evil cult bent on manipulating and controlling the people it has sway over, as well as converting those that don't believe...

There are many such religious cults, even if Christianity is not one of them. In your opinion, would the previous paragraph count as blasphemy or not?
 

Skeptik

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Obviously if post 6 is blasphemy then post 7 is as well. The difference is that Christians are more tolerant and your house won't be burnt down as revenge (usually ;))
 

arf9999

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Blasphemy is the defamation of the name of God or the gods, and by extension any display of gross irreverence towards any person or thing deemed worthy of exalted esteem. In this broader sense the term is used by Sir Francis Bacon in the Advancement of Learning, when he speaks of "blasphemy against learning". Many cultures disapprove of speech or writing which defames the God or gods of their established religions, and these restrictions have the force of law in some countries.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blasphemy

I think that this will limit many of the religious "debates" to the extent of making them worthless, so we should limit the control to personal attacks.
 

mancombseepgood

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Personally I think Blasphemy is just one bit in the whole trolling thing. Common sense should prevail and posts or comments that are engineered to simply offend or provoke knee-jerk reaction (destructive to the discussion) should be deleted IMO.
 

Debbie

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Guidelines for this section?

Assume that no one will change their mind, and that there is no truth- only perspectives. PiesangTee's sig puts it nicely :)
 

Xarog

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In other words, you should rather be trying to understand the other person's point of view (and not neccessarily agreeing with it) rather than trying to convince them that you're right?
 
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