Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

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Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Carleas » Tue Feb 24, 2009 10:43 pm

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby PavlovianModel146 » Wed Feb 25, 2009 2:41 am

Very good choices for judges.

I believe that Xunzian has the much more difficult position to defend and that he is required to play a lot more offense than his opponent. If DorkyD00D can just hang back and sidestep enough arguments, he should come away with this thing.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Carleas » Wed Feb 25, 2009 3:09 pm

I disagree. While I agree with Dorky in fact, I think making the case is hard. It's not at all a given that if religion were removed, the middle east would pacify to any significant degree. Unless you are willing to understand 'religion' as the entire cultural/group identity that it involves, removing religion still leaves two tribes that have been fighting over land for millenia. As I see it, Dorky will have to do a lot to show how religion is indirectly causing or perpetuating these disagreements.

Also, Xunzian's slippery. I think he'll do a lot to make hanging back a losing strategy.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby uglypeoplefucking » Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:28 pm

A powerfully constructed opening argument from Xunzian - it's got a few soft spots, but chances are they're bait - even tho i'm naturally sympathetic towards Dorky's position i have to say he's going to have his work cut out for him.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby PavlovianModel146 » Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:06 am

Carleas wrote:
Also, Xunzian's slippery. I think he'll do a lot to make hanging back a losing strategy.


I agree with that, but I still say he is going to have to be almost all offense. My main concern for Xunzian would be that having to play more of an attacker's role and less of a defensive role in this debate may give DorkyD00D the ability to slide a strong, yet subtle, clincher argument in there that Xunzian might miss.

DorkyD00D may have the same obstacle, just in a different way. Since he will be hit with so many attacks throughout the course of this debate, it may end up being difficult for him to recognize and respond to each individual attack. And obviously, the more attacks Xunzian can throw out there, the greater the chance that he throws out two or three irrefutable ones.

In summation, I say this is classic offense vs. defense.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Xunzian » Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:52 am

That would depend on whether or not I am being cynical about this. Since I reject the idealistic idea of history, I am presenting my view as I hold it as opposed to arguing with the intention of winning. I'd rather lose but argue well and perhaps convince a few readers than win a purely rhetorical victory. *shrugs*

Dorky and I have been around the block a few times on this topic, so formally discussing it makes sense for us.

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=154121&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&start=25
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=166686&p=2045168
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=165864&p=2026557
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=165562&p=2019880

Are all examples. Topics 1, 3, and 4 lead to Dorky starting 2, if I remember correctly. But it will be nice to have the arguments presented in a single place.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby PavlovianModel146 » Thu Feb 26, 2009 2:01 am

There is nothing better than getting a straight answer from one of the participants themselves!

Am I right, ladies? I'm here all week. (That will never get old to me!)
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby felix dakat » Fri Feb 27, 2009 6:08 pm

Pavlovianmodel146

I believe that Xunzian has the much more difficult position to defend and that he is required to play a lot more offense than his opponent.


I agree. The way the question is constucted, it appears Xunxian is charged to persuade us that religion has no causitive role whatsoever. I have discussed this issue with dorky not long ago, but I never held that extreme position on the matter. Harris maintains that religion is THE cause of the problem. That is far from the question as framed here.

That said, Xunxian has made an excellent start in his opening thesis. For dialectical materialism, religion is always strategy for controlling the masses not a cause. Dorky will have to prove that it has some causitive role. This he has done before by saying that religion is the avowed reason the suicide bomber gives for carrying out her mission. Xunxian can counter with unconscious motivation. I think I can anticipate how this thing will go.

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Carleas » Fri Feb 27, 2009 8:25 pm

On reflection, that does seem like an unassailable claim, but it was Xunzian who provided it. There are many ways to interpret it, though.

From his first post, it seems like Xunzian is putting the emphasis on the causality, because he acknowledges that it plays a role (he mentions that those involved have no fear of death), but emphasizes that that role comes after the fact. So emphasized, he can accept that religion makes matters worse, exacerbates the troubles, but consistently deny causality.

Unfortunately, that could make the debate the kind of language game he was interested in avoiding, because d0rky might emphasize the question differently, and treat the role of religion as proof that they are a cause of the current situation, even if perhaps not the cause of the historical situation.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby PavlovianModel146 » Sat Feb 28, 2009 12:38 am

Carleas wrote:
From his first post, it seems like Xunzian is putting the emphasis on the causality, because he acknowledges that it plays a role (he mentions that those involved have no fear of death), but emphasizes that that role comes after the fact. So emphasized, he can accept that religion makes matters worse, exacerbates the troubles, but consistently deny causality.


That's pretty much what I got out of it. The problems (or causation) are not mutually exclusive to religious beliefs, but the beliefs are used in a motivational way.

Carleas wrote:Unfortunately, that could make the debate the kind of language game he was interested in avoiding, because d0rky might emphasize the question differently, and treat the role of religion as proof that they are a cause of the current situation, even if perhaps not the cause of the historical situation.


That would be the easy way to go, but given the relative difficulty of defending Xunzian's position, I would like to see D0rkyD00d go up against Xunzian on Xunzian's terms.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby felix dakat » Mon Mar 02, 2009 10:34 pm

Xunxian stole Occam's razor from Dorky and gave him a clean shave with it!

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Carleas » Tue Mar 03, 2009 12:51 am

Pav, you called it. Dorky went at it without so much as quoting a dictionary.

I thought his last quote was strange, it acknowledged the role of land, something I thought Dorky would avoid. Maybe he's trying to keep a moderate position to stay more plausible, but I think he's exposed himself to some skillful rhetoric. A trap maybe? Xunzian passed on it, anyway.

I'll give Xunzian the steal, but I think it was a little more of a hoodwink. What's the practical difference between motivations and justifications in this case? Without religion, the region is peaceful, are we talking about motivation, or just significant responsibility?
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby felix dakat » Tue Mar 03, 2009 2:13 am

Dorky might be more persuasive if he did not pursue the Harris' line of reasoning. The problem is he really seems to believe it. But hey, I get it. If the Jehovah Witnesses were my paradigm for religion, I would likely despise religion too.

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby PavlovianModel146 » Tue Mar 03, 2009 3:22 am

Carleas wrote:Pav, you called it. Dorky went at it without so much as quoting a dictionary.

I thought his last quote was strange, it acknowledged the role of land, something I thought Dorky would avoid. Maybe he's trying to keep a moderate position to stay more plausible, but I think he's exposed himself to some skillful rhetoric. A trap maybe? Xunzian passed on it, anyway.


I agree. I couldn't say what, but I think he definitely had something in mind. Xunzian probably would have countered had he not had the Occam's razor thing set up.

Carleas wrote:I'll give Xunzian the steal, but I think it was a little more of a hoodwink. What's the practical difference between motivations and justifications in this case? Without religion, the region is peaceful, are we talking about motivation, or just significant responsibility?


The difference isn't practical, but it's there. I mean, a justification (to me) is just coming up with a reason to do something that you would be doing and want to do anyway whereas a motivation is something that causes you to do something.

It basically just makes Religion a convenient excuse to do what it is they want to do.

That having been said, I'm feeling a little itchy, might have to get myself in another debate soon. Do you disagree with me fundamentally about anything? I asked Xunzian, I actually promised Xunzian a debate after the ILP v. ILO Debates are over provided he could come up with something that we disagree on.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Carleas » Tue Mar 03, 2009 4:11 am

Rap battle?
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby PavlovianModel146 » Tue Mar 03, 2009 4:33 am

I don't like rap, nor can I rap.

I'm sorry to disappoint you.

Do you think a serious contributor to me not getting in any heated debates with anyone might be my reluctance to take an absolute stance on things?
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Xunzian » Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:07 am

Need to work on that man. I routinely try and impress on people in the religion section that it is better to take a position, stick with it, and see where it takes you. Sometimes it will be wrong, yes. It does run that risk. I've been wrong plenty of times. Ucci, a paragon of Christian intransigence, found himself wrong often enough that he switched from Protestantism to Orthodox. That sort of thing happens when you actually have a position to examine and be found wrong on. May as well lay it all out and see where it takes you -- agnosticism, on any issue, cannot be proven wrong so it prevents development. Better a sincere position that is open to change.

But that is just one man's opinion.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby uglypeoplefucking » Wed Mar 04, 2009 9:35 pm

I have problems with the way Xunzian used the distinction between motivation and justification, too - if a person has a ready-at-hand justification to do something, that fact alone will figure into their motivation for doing it - i don't think the line is all that clear, particularly in the case of religious violence - sure a person may be inclined to kill anyway, but if they have a religious mandate to do so, then that's all the more motivation to follow through, in which case religion is still playing a causal role . . .

i hope it's not out of line for me to say so, it not being my debate - but it was alluded to above . . .
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Xunzian » Fri Mar 06, 2009 5:08 pm

It seems as though D0rky has already written his conclusion. I'll be following with mine shortly (probably later today) but Dorky wants to post his conclusion and finish up the debate. I don't see anything wrong with this, so I'll be creating a blank dummy post so he can reply with his conclusion. That allows for more natural reading order, so the final debate will look like:

Xunzian
Dorky
Xunzian
Dorky
Xunzian
Dorky

As opposed to
Xunzian
Dorky
Xunzian
Dorky
Dorky
Xunzian

Especially since the most memorable parts of any argument are the beginning and end, I feel it would be unfair to Dorky for me to both lead and finish the debate.

So don't be confused when you see a blank post with my name on it. I'll edit it for my conclusion later.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby felix dakat » Tue Mar 10, 2009 5:45 pm

If Dorky's argument of 03/07/2009 is his last, then he has lost the debate. Dorky's side of the issue was easily winnable. There is no doubt in my mind that religion plays a role in the Middle East’s trouble. But Dorky tried to prove that it is the central or primary role. By trying to prove too much he lost the argument.

Religion ultimately boils down to what is believed by individuals. What is written in the Koran is always subject to the interpretation of a someone. If anyone in the Middle East believes that the Koran teaches them to kill innocent people and acts on that belief, then religion has played a role in the troubles of the Middle East. It's that simple.

But by trying to prove that Islam is ultimately evil or that religion is ultimately evil or is the root cause of terrorism, etc. Dorky took on too much. He is saying that all the Muslims who don't believe that the Koran teaches suicide bombing are wrong about Islam. He is saying they are not true Islamists. He, Dorky must know what Islam really means and stands for in contradistinction to their millions of professing Muslims who believe it teaches otherwise.

Dorky’s arguments follow Sam Harris’. Harris is already retreating from the extreme positions that he took in the aftermath of 911 when hysterical religion bashing appeared to be more rational than it does now.

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby d0rkyd00d » Tue Mar 10, 2009 6:44 pm

Felix,

I will wait until the debate has concluded before I toss your salad.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby Xunzian » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:01 pm

Hey man, lemme fall on my sword before we post judgment ;) Should be out soon, sorry, life getting in the way. You all know how it is.
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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby felix dakat » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:12 pm

d0rkyd00d wrote:Felix,

I will wait until the debate has concluded before I toss your salad.


:character-kermit:

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby d0rkyd00d » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:16 pm

I just hope there is a judge in my corner that is as blatantly and disturbingly biased toward my argument as felix is towards Xunzian's.
"We have heard talk enough. We have listened to all the drowsy, idealess, vapid sermons that we wish to hear. We have read your Bible and the works of your best minds. We have heard your prayers, your solemn groans and your reverential amens. All these amount to less than nothing. We want one fact. We beg at the doors of your churches for just one little fact. We pass our hats along your pews and under your pulpits and implore you for just one fact. We know all about your mouldy wonders and your stale miracles. We want a this year's fact. We ask only one. Give us one fact for charity. Your miracles are too ancient. The witnesses have been dead for nearly two thousand years." -Robert Ingersoll

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Re: Religion's Role in the Troubles in the Middle East

Postby felix dakat » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:28 pm

Dorky

Hey I was drafted after all. I give you points for sincerity. You could have won me over with an argument like I presented above. Instead, you stuck to your true beliefs even though it meant losing my vote. I applaud you sir. =D>

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