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Why I'm an atheist...

http://atheismandme.com/why-religion-sucks/


There is only one reason that I'm an atheist: I don't believe in God. Even if religion was wonderful, I would still be an atheist because I don't believe in God.
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Those reasons are not why I'm an Atheist. They are, however the reasons I despair for humanity.

AM
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Those reasons are not why I'm an Atheist. They are, however the reasons I despair for humanity.



yup.
......reasons I had to invent my own religion
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I'm an atheist because I'm a rational, thinking individual. I've learned to think critically.
The whole myth is nice, but it doesn't make sense.
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I'm an atheist because I'm a rational, thinking individual. I've learned to think critically.
The whole myth is nice, but it doesn't make sense.

----------


What's nice about it?

AM
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The whole myth is nice, but it doesn't make sense.

The Abrahamic one isn't even nice...
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MadCap: Even if religion was wonderful, I would still be an atheist because I don't believe in God.

Grammar police alert! First degree abuse of the subjunctive mood. The punishment is harsh -- one hundred lashes with a wet noodle.


Better: Even if religion were wonderful, I would still be an atheist because I don't believe in God.

Or British: Were religion wonderful I should still be an atheist, having no belief in God.

If everyone knew the sublime beauties of the subjunctive, my mood would be better.

Loren
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MadCap: Even if religion was wonderful, I would still be an atheist because I don't believe in God.

Grammar police alert! First degree abuse of the subjunctive mood. The punishment is harsh -- one hundred lashes with a wet noodle.


Better: Even if religion were wonderful, I would still be an atheist because I don't believe in God.

Or British: Were religion wonderful I should still be an atheist, having no belief in God.

If everyone knew the sublime beauties of the subjunctive, my mood would be better.

Loren


If there were fewer grammar Nazis, *my* mood would be better.
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But what if you don't believe in the subjunctive mood?

PF
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But what if you don't believe in the subjunctive mood?

Even if you didn't believe in the subjunctive mood, it would still exist. Unlike that other thing...

rj
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If everyone knew the sublime beauties of the subjunctive, my mood would be better.

When I was in school I don't remember them teaching any of that. Or maybe I was sleeping. It was odd, I knew what was correct (usually) just by how it sounded. Or by how it read. I couldn't have told you 'why'. I didn't know my subjunctive from my pluperfect. For a while when I was studying Spanish I learned it, but thinking about it now I couldn't define it (without going to the Wiki).
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If there were fewer grammar Nazis, *my* mood would be better.

If you don't like it, then go away. Precision in speech is important for effective communication. Most folks here don't mind the occasional correction. I find it interesting that those who get annoyed with "grammar Nazis" are also those who, in general, seem to talk about "job-killing regulations" (without the hyphen...they're not smart enough to know there's a hyphen in there), etc.

Their attitudes about everything seem to be wrong. You're a case in point.

1poorguy
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If you don't like it, then go away


Go Away
..... fixed that for you (>:
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If you don't like it, then go away


Go Away
..... fixed that for you (>:

---------


GO. AWAY!!!!


There. Fixed it for you both.

AM
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GO. AWAY!!!!

What is the purpose of the period after "go"??
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GO. AWAY!!!!

What is the purpose of the period after "go"??



changes the rhythm
emphasizes the 'away'


--- thinks four '!' a bit excessive
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If everyone knew the sublime beauties of the subjunctive, my mood would be better.

When I was in school I don't remember them teaching any of that. Or maybe I was sleeping. It was odd, I knew what was correct (usually) just by how it sounded. Or by how it read. I couldn't have told you 'why'. I didn't know my subjunctive from my pluperfect. For a while when I was studying Spanish I learned it, but thinking about it now I couldn't define it (without going to the Wiki).


I learned more English grammar in Spanish class than I did in English class. I've heard others say the same thing.

German subjunctive seems to be used more than the English.

Count Upp
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If there were fewer grammar Nazis, *my* mood would be better.

If you don't like it, then go away.


I cut Mad some slack on this one. Almost humorous.

Count Upp
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I cut Mad some slack on this one. Almost humorous.



meh
.... me and you among the most beet up buy the grammer 'Nazi'

but don't get all grouchy like
... sew: no ice from me
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Sum of us are just plane humerless.
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Sum of us are just plane humerless



they're is that two





humorusless would be creepy
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humorusless would be creepy

Humerusless wood bee wurss.

Count Upp
... Did I ever mention my old friend, Humerus Femur?
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Now this is a grammar Nazi:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4vf8N6GpdM

Personally, being the OCD sort of person I am, it bothers me to see "its" and "it's" and "your" and "you're" and so on mixed up in print. Likely it's just that so many more publications exist, but it seems that it's no longer rare to see these sorts of goofs in magazines, newspapers, and more-formal internet news sites.

rj
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Personally, being the OCD sort of person I am, it bothers me to see "its" and "it's" and "your" and "you're" and so on mixed up in print. Likely it's just that so many more publications exist, but it seems that it's no longer rare to see these sorts of goofs in magazines, newspapers, and more-formal internet news sites.

rj



This is because they are hiring idiots for editors.

AM
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humorusless would be creepy

Humerusless wood bee wurss.



thats watt i was going four ...just speelt it wrong
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If there were fewer grammar Nazis, *my* mood would be better.

If you don't like it, then go away. Precision in speech is important for effective communication. Most folks here don't mind the occasional correction. I find it interesting that those who get annoyed with "grammar Nazis" are also those who, in general, seem to talk about "job-killing regulations" (without the hyphen...they're not smart enough to know there's a hyphen in there), etc.

Their attitudes about everything seem to be wrong. You're a case in point.

1poorguy


Give me a break. I write well. Nobody is perfect. I could go around correcting everyone's spelling, grammar, and punctuation mistakes, but it is extremely annoying and won't change anything.
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Give me a break. I write well. Nobody is perfect.

No. Nobody is perfect. But you're the one who whined when a simple point was made (and in a very friendly fashion). You could have said "OK", or "that's interesting", or nothing at all, and that would have been the end of it. Instead you whined, attracting further criticism. And now you're whining about the response to your first whine.

I suspect it's turtles all the way down from here, so that will be my last comment on the subject.
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Give me a break. I write well. Nobody is perfect.

No. Nobody is perfect. But you're the one who whined when a simple point was made (and in a very friendly fashion). You could have said "OK", or "that's interesting", or nothing at all, and that would have been the end of it. Instead you whined, attracting further criticism. And now you're whining about the response to your first whine.

I suspect it's turtles all the way down from here, so that will be my last comment on the subject.


You must really enjoy being ridiculous and annoying. You are so good at it.
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Personally, being the OCD sort of person I am, it bothers me to see "its" and "it's" and "your" and "you're" and so on mixed up in print. Likely it's just that so many more publications exist, but it seems that it's no longer rare to see these sorts of goofs in magazines, newspapers, and more-formal internet news sites.

rj

---------

This is because they are hiring idiots for editors.

AM


This is because they are hiring idiots AS editors.
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PucksFool: But what if you don't believe in the subjunctive mood?

Yep, that would be a problem. Oddly enough, it is related to religion, beliefs, doubts, and yes, even atheism.

Is God counterfactual? This question is a huge component of the ongoing argument between religious fundamentalists, on one hand, and just about everyone else on the other.

A "counterfactual" is an idea that we express with a certain degree of doubt, or desire, or wish, or fantasy, or as a hypothesis, or as a "fact" that was told to us by a dubious source. It might be true or false or distorted, or it might be "not even wrong" (to borrow a wonderful phrase from Wolfgang Pauli).

Counterfactuals also include claims that are superficially wrong but have some deeper element of truth: metaphors, similes, hyperboles, allegories, myths, and legends.

Much of what passes for history in the Bible is legend, myth, allegory, and metaphor. The historical "facts" that it contains are subject to serious doubt, but on some metaphorical level they convey useful and even important truths about the human condition. The same can be said of all religious scripture, regardless of language, culture, or theology. All of these religious "facts" are, in one sense or another, counterfactual.

English, in common with every other human language, has a variety of ways of indicating that an idea is a counterfactual. Most of these require additional words that describe or specify the doubt:

"I have heard that..."
"She would like you to..."
"If only..."

But in addition to these circumlocutions, almost all human languages also provide a quick and subtle way to emphasize the counterfactual nature of a statement, simply by modifying the verb. Grammarians call this a subjunctive.

"When I was strong..." conveys a fact: I was once strong.
"If I were strong..." conveys a counterfactual: I am not actually strong.

The slight change in the verb, from "was" to "were", is the marker for the counterfactual. Grammarians would say that it changes the mood of the sentence from indicative (factual) to subjunctive (counterfactual). In this case the precise sense of the subjunctive "were" might be a wish, a fantasy, or a hypothesis -- we (the listeners) are not sure precisely which sense is meant, but we get the counterfactual nature of the statement immediately.

Although we call the subjunctive a "mood", the word is really just an alternate spelling of "mode" -- it has little or nothing to do with the mood of the speaker. Verbs have modes. In English there are only three:

-- indicative (simple fact)
-- imperative (command)
-- subjunctive (counterfactual)

We English speakers overload the poor subjunctive mode with a variety of meanings: doubt, desire, wish, fantasy, hypothesis, etc, etc. In other languages these different shades of counterfactuality have their own special modes, each indicated by a particular slight change in the verb:

-- conditional (hypothesis [e.g. Spanish])
-- optative (hope, wish, desire [e.g. Japanese])
-- jussive (imploring, pleading [e.g. Arabic])
-- potential (probable but not certain [e.g. Persian])

These changes in mode are especially powerful in spoken language, where they provide an independent auditory channel of subtle coloration of meaning. It is no accident, I believe, that ancient languages tend to have many more modes than modern languages.

Ancient Greek, Latin, Sanskrit, Hebrew, Aramaic, Old Norse, and Old Church Slavonic had a bewildering variety of modes and inflections for their verbs. Storytellers used them to brilliant effect, weaving a tapestry of colorful meanings -- and coincidentally making their stories devilishly difficult to understand for modern readers.

It doesn't help that ancient orthography was quite primitive. Ancient scribes omitted indications for accents, tonal variations, and emphasis. The same symbol was often used for a variety of consonants and vowel sounds, and sometimes vowels were omitted altogether. We have very little idea what overtones and shades of meaning we are missing when we read ancient texts, even in those rare circumstances when we can actually read the originals.

Here's the thing: I am convinced that people gathered around a fire and listening to an ancient storyteller were never in doubt when they heard a counterfactual, and that they could distinguish by ear all the various counterfactual forms that we now communicate only with awkward circumlocutions. Over the last 500 years of modernity, these shades of meaning have been rapidly lost -- and with them our ability to decipher exactly what the old storytellers were really trying to say.

Gone are the optative and jussive moods. The subjunctive is barely alive in English, and many other modern languages. It is now a mere relic of a former glory of the spoken word, a shadow that leaves a mere hint of what our ancestors had available -- and heard every night around the campfire.

That's what we lose when we cease to believe in the subjunctive mood.

Loren
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