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Survey: What do you think about the Bible?


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#21 BronzeBeard   Members   -  Reputation: 160

Posted 03 February 2011 - 09:30 PM

Bob the kitten slayer - he genuinely believes that running over kittens is moral cause it's the right thing to do.


If we don't take care of these kittens now, and lolcatnet rises up... Mankind as we know it will be doomed.

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I took the survey... seemed a bit bias, I do agree a "what religion are you" question in the beginning would allow you to better organize your responses...

Can I get my cookie now?

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#22 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 29696

Posted 03 February 2011 - 09:50 PM

That's my point. You have no reason to believe that your internal morals and humanity are correct.

Morality can't be "correct", it's a personal value. You may as well say that my favourite colour isn't correct, so we need a deity to tell us what our favourite colour really is.

Take, hypothetically, Bob the kitten slayer - he genuinely believes that running over kittens is moral cause it's the right thing to do.

And his actions obviously do not offend his morality, but they do offend the morality of others.

By saying that your morality is superior to Bob's, all you're really saying is that your brain has better chemical reactions than his. (btw, define "better" in this context)

You've brought the concept of "better" morals into this, not me. As above with "correctness", "better" is nonsense in this context.
Society is based on understanding the moral values of those around you so that everyone gets along (even if your morals don't agree).
^^This is why religion tries to impose a set of absolute morals onto people; it's an attempt to create social order. It's entierly flawed, and contrary to human behaviour, but it's the thought that counts.

And anyway, who says it is wrong to be immoral?

The people who are offended by your 'immoral' actions (immoral = against their own personal morals).
If your actions would offend someone in France or Iran then it matters not, but if your actions offend your neighbours, peers or friends, then you'll have issues.

#23 Seaßourne   Members   -  Reputation: 104

Posted 03 February 2011 - 10:30 PM

I think the bible is a lot of garbage. I don't believe anything written in that book. It is an ancient novel full of murder, corruption, homosexually, homophobic, contradictions, beastiality, incest and fear. God is just a figment of our imagination. God is manmade. God is a hypocritical, controls people with fear. Popes that are child rapists and molesters with followers who condone terroristic acts. That feel the need to run someone elses life because they can't control their own.

#24 ApochPiQ   Moderators   -  Reputation: 15164

Posted 03 February 2011 - 10:37 PM


I have read the bible, numerous times, and am well versed in its contents. I just happen to have very little regard for it or its vaunted contents.

How many times did you read it before coming to the conclusion that you don't care for it? Did you read it any more times after that?


It took probably 3-4 readthroughs before I started losing my taste for it. I've read it another couple of times since then and that only made matters worse.

But as I said, I'd rather not derail this thread with my personal tale, so I'll leave it to you chaps to finish beating the hell out of it :-)

#25 Ticker   Members   -  Reputation: 102

Posted 03 February 2011 - 11:19 PM

But without an all powerful ruling deity, any definition of "nice philosophy" is arbitrary.


Morality can't be "correct", it's a personal value.

With respect, I'd like to point out that you're agreeing with my previous post.
When you set the standard for morality yourself, it is arbitrary. It will differ between people, between cultures.
It may even change over time.

but they do offend the morality of others.
...
You've brought the concept of "better" morals into this, not me. As above with "correctness", "better" is nonsense in this context.

I agree since both yours and Bob's morals are arbitrary neither is better than the other.
But if you accept that your morality is no better than his, why would you be offended when Bob revs up his pickup truck to go kitten squishing?


The people who are offended by your 'immoral' actions (immoral = against their own personal morals).

Such people are being irrational. It might be my moral to be immoral. And since their morality is no better than mine... ah you get the idea.

If your actions would offend someone in France or Iran then it matters not, but if your actions offend your neighbours, peers or friends, then you'll have issues.

This again is an arbitrary rule.
Someone else may well disagree that it is ok to offend someone in France just because they are not a neighbour/peer or friend and be offended at your comment.

#26 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 29696

Posted 04 February 2011 - 12:01 AM

With respect, I'd like to point out that you're agreeing with my previous post. When you set the standard for morality yourself, it is arbitrary. It will differ between people, between cultures. It may even change over time.

Except that you're saying that the existence of an all powerful ruling deity changes things in some way -- even if we knew the bible was the word of God and taught His morality, it would still be arbitrary.

But if you accept that your morality is no better than his, why would you be offended when Bob revs up his pickup truck to go kitten squishing?

Because I like cats? Because at an emotional level, seeing a cat be squished would manifest a feeling of disgust. Morals are a personal feeling - you can't choose to change base emotional responses to the world. Bob, knowing that squishing cats causes so much emotional distress to those around him, Bob should probably compromise in order to avoid conflict with his neighbours.

Such people [who's morals are offended by immoral actions] are being irrational. It might be my moral to be immoral. And since their morality is no better than mine... ah you get the idea.

You're missing the point.
Let's say that a lion's nature is such that if you punch it, it will eat you. This is it's morality.
It doesn't matter if you proclaim that "it's your moral" to punch lions -- the lion will still eat you if you do so. Saying "Oh mr lion, you're being irrational" isn't going to change the nature of the lion.
In the same way, telling someone that their morality is irrational is not going to change the nature of that person -- the nature to how they respond to the world.

So, no, I don't get the idea because it's flawed. A world where we say "I can do whatever I feel is right, because my right is just as right as your right" is a world full of people being eaten by lions. You're ignoring the fact that humans are not robots, we're animals, and animals have their own nature.
Instead, we need to balance what we feel is right along with what the rest of the community feels. The community thus has it's own composite morality that is a compromise between it's individuals.

Someone else may well disagree that it is ok to offend someone in France just because they are not a neighbour/peer or friend and be offended at your comment.

You've misread me, it's ok if your actions *would* (hypothetical "would") offend someone on the other side of the planet, because that person is not aware of or affected by your actions.
If your actions do affect someone, then you've created conflict.

I have no idea what this has to do with a survey though.

#27 Sirisian   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1738

Posted 04 February 2011 - 12:46 AM


Morality can't be "correct", it's a personal value.

With respect, I'd like to point out that you're agreeing with my previous post.
When you set the standard for morality yourself, it is arbitrary. It will differ between people, between cultures.
It may even change over time.

I've always kept this simple. My view of morality is always right. It's not set arbitrarily, but instead by critical thinking. It might differ with other people, but their views are always wrong if they don't agree. If my morality toward something changes over time it reflects what's morally right still. It's worked pretty well. It's rather open-minded too.

I took the survey earlier. I don't believe in deities. I'm sure the bible has some nice viewpoints since it's entertained people for years, but I couldn't get passed Genesis.

#28 Ticker   Members   -  Reputation: 102

Posted 04 February 2011 - 01:02 AM

Except that you're saying that the existence of an all powerful ruling deity changes things in some way -- even if we knew the bible was the word of God and taught His morality, it would still be arbitrary.

No because an all powerful (infinite) God has the ability to *define* what is right and what is wrong.
And because His word is the very definition of right or wrong, it is not arbitrary. It is the standard.

Because I like cats? Because at an emotional level, seeing a cat be squished would manifest a feeling of disgust. Morals are a personal feeling - you can't choose to change base emotional responses to the world.

Just because someone has an emotional response to something does not make it right or wrong.
Bob has a different emotional response to flat cats and he is offended that you prefer cats in an unflattened state.

Sorry I must admit I don't follow what you're trying to say with the lion example.

I have no idea what this has to do with a survey though.

Yes we have hijacked this thread. Apologies to AndyGeers. If you want to continue this discussion, you can PM me.

#29 AndyGeers   Members   -  Reputation: 132

Posted 04 February 2011 - 01:03 AM

Repeat after me, voluntary response data are worthless.


Surely it's only worthless if your goal is to publish a survey with results like "50% of all game developers are Christians!!!1!1"
I think there are still some meaningful conclusions to be drawn if you're more interested in some correlation of answers.

As for those who found themselves unable to answer the questions because you don't believe in a god - I'm sorry you felt that, although I must confess to being pretty surprised. My intention was that only the very last block of questions presupposes a belief in God (and perhaps the final question in some of the other blocks).

#30 valderman   Members   -  Reputation: 512

Posted 04 February 2011 - 04:38 AM


... some nice philosophy to live by ...


But without an all powerful ruling deity, any definition of "nice philosophy" is arbitrary.
ie.
Why is it "nice" to be polite to people?
Why is it "not nice" to cut peoples' ears off?
etc...

That's basically saying "if God hadn't told me not to, I'd totally spend EVERY DAY raping, killing and generally being a totally bad-ass viking!"

No because an all powerful (infinite) God has the ability to *define* what is right and what is wrong.
And because His word is the very definition of right or wrong, it is not arbitrary. It is the standard.

Even people of the same religion come to different conclusions about morals - what gives you, and not those who disagree with you, the right of interpretation?

#31 ChaosEngine   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2297

Posted 04 February 2011 - 06:38 AM

Your survey questions could really use some work. The first question asks something how familiar are you with the bible, but the answers imply it's how often do you interact with it now?

Like ApochPiQ, I would class myself as reasonably familiar with the bible, but I don't believe any of it (other than the fact that it may be based around some actual historical events). I wouldn't say I was forced to read it, I just didn't comprehend as a child that there was a possibility of not reading it.

BTW, you give ApochPiQ kudos for at least reading the bible before dismissing it. I assume you've read the Quran, the Torah, the Norse mythologies, the Bhagavad-Gita, the Tipitaka and so on before you dismissed those religions. All of which brings us back to the far more interesting phenomenon of how geography is the over riding factor in the majority of most peoples belief systems. It would be interesting to note how many people were "born christian" and how many chose it.
if you think programming is like sex, you probably haven't done much of either.-------------- - capn_midnight

#32 Machaira   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1028

Posted 04 February 2011 - 06:46 AM

Your survey questions could really use some work.

Agreed. I stumbled my way through it but some of my answers aren't going to be very useful as they're the lesser invalid choice of a number of invalid choices. For instance the school question I could only answer from a historical 25 years ago POV which I'm guessing wasn't the intent of the question. Posted Image


It would be interesting to note how many people were "born christian" and how many chose it.

The latter for me. and I'm glad to see you use quotes (since the definition of "Christian" means you can't be born one). Posted Image
Microsoft XNA MVP | Check out my blog for random ramblings on XNA game development

#33 kseh   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2003

Posted 04 February 2011 - 11:13 AM

The Bible... tl;dr

I believe I was somewhere around 6 years old and I was sitting in a doctors office waiting for something or other and I came accross a book that I guess was a condensed version of Genesis. I forget exactly how it caught my eye but I started checking it out and I recognised the names Adam and Eve from CS Lewis books that were read to me at bedtime. I glanced accross a few pages and came to something that was like "The First Man and Woman" and my mind was like, "Oh hey, cool, finally I can get some answers here." Like any kid, I was curious about the whole where do we come from thing and even though my parents explained babies come from a mom and a dad, I quickly figured out that at some point there still had to be a first and I never got an answer about that. The book was a little above my comprehension level but not by a lot. I got through as much as I could and in the end I was like, "No, this can't be right." Being 6 the whole idea of a magic guy in the clouds making stuff by waving his hands around isn't a crazy idea (I'd try and figure out where he came from later). Evolution wasn't something that I was familiar with and my parents hadn't really pushed me to nor away from religeon. But the bit that I read seemed completly rediculous to me. It just felt like I wasn't being told the truth.

As such were my first impressions of the bible so I never got into it (never got much into reading books in general). In general, I don't think there's anything wrong with people trying to find an altruistic path through the writings of others. And if there's stuff in there that's based on historic events (exagerated or not) there's immense value in that. The way that some people idolize the book creeps me out though (and I think there's something in there about not doing that sort of thing).




#34 AndyGeers   Members   -  Reputation: 132

Posted 04 February 2011 - 12:08 PM


Your survey questions could really use some work.

Agreed. I stumbled my way through it but some of my answers aren't going to be very useful as they're the lesser invalid choice of a number of invalid choices. For instance the school question I could only answer from a historical 25 years ago POV which I'm guessing wasn't the intent of the question. Posted Image



Thanks for the feedback. I agree that I could have been clearer in terms of separating out *current* habits from historic habits. Partly I was limited by the fact that SurveyMonkey only lets you have 10 questions before you have to upgrade to a paid account. That's no excuse however.

#35 Fl4sh   Banned   -  Reputation: 30

Posted 04 February 2011 - 01:17 PM

I just went through it. But like other said, there are glaring problems with some of the questions. Posted Image



Your survey questions could really use some work.

Agreed. I stumbled my way through it but some of my answers aren't going to be very useful as they're the lesser invalid choice of a number of invalid choices. For instance the school question I could only answer from a historical 25 years ago POV which I'm guessing wasn't the intent of the question. Posted Image



Thanks for the feedback. I agree that I could have been clearer in terms of separating out *current* habits from historic habits. Partly I was limited by the fact that SurveyMonkey only lets you have 10 questions before you have to upgrade to a paid account. That's no excuse however.


Should have just make a custom survey in php/mysql (or something similar) and put it on a free host.
They hated on Jeezus, so you think I give a f***?!

#36 Aardvajk   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5968

Posted 04 February 2011 - 01:49 PM

tl;dr;


Thread winnar. :)

#37 Oluseyi   Staff Emeritus   -  Reputation: 1678

Posted 04 February 2011 - 02:51 PM

I'm developing an Old Testament adventure game myself, and enjoy blogging on related topics. I guess partly I'm trying to figure out who's out there who might even be vaguely interested and what they think, so that I can think about how to reach out and engage with them.


Surveying game developers is not a meaningful way to understand the interests of gamers.

#38 AndyGeers   Members   -  Reputation: 132

Posted 04 February 2011 - 02:52 PM


I'm developing an Old Testament adventure game myself, and enjoy blogging on related topics. I guess partly I'm trying to figure out who's out there who might even be vaguely interested and what they think, so that I can think about how to reach out and engage with them.


Surveying game developers is not a meaningful way to understand the interests of gamers.


Yes, but my blog is more for game developers than for gamers.

#39 slayemin   Members   -  Reputation: 2464

Posted 04 February 2011 - 03:14 PM

I would bet that 80-90% of western game developers (and other engineers) are atheists or agnostics.

Eric Nevala

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#40 Nathan Handley   Members   -  Reputation: 792

Posted 04 February 2011 - 06:29 PM

I think the questions/survey is poorly aimed. It'd work better targeted directly at Christians or non-Christians.

I say this because I'm not a believer in the Christian mythology and can only really assess it as a literary work. I've read all of Old Testament and most the New Testament, but couldn't really get into it. It wasn't engaging enough and had a bit too much 'bad' in it (Bigotry, Sexism, raw Hate). The more contemporary derivatives are rather nice (Constantine, Supernatural TV series, so on). Overall though, I find Norse or Greek mythology more interesting.

As for the questions in your original post, I think that it's probably time for a revision. The amount of interpretation required for a 'ultimate authority' on life and everything is a bit too much, so a concise rewriting is probably in order. Getting rid of the oppressive views and simply bad lessons would be great as well. I'm not sure what would be required for someone's rewrite to be taken seriously since anyone who claimed to be transcribing for God-- except maybe the Pope-- would probably be simply labelled a Lunatic by even the Christian communities.

Hmm... perhaps it'd be impossible. The Bible is only taken seriously because it IS old and the writings cannot be validated. Then again, Scientology was able to start up recently.

Bleh, whatever. I just hope I'm wrong about all this stuff and get a chance to join the Einherjar.




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