I must write four (or more) comments on blogs to which I have not previously commented. Should I comment on posts that ring true to me, which would be easy? Should I try to comment constructively on views I would spend a lifetime opposing, which would be hard? Or should I seek posts in areas where I am currently on the fence, which would be unlikely as there are fewer such areas around, nowadays?
Religion and Critical Thinking
- Blog: We do recover! A recovered meth addict’s blog.
- Article: Broken critical thinking.
- Author: Jerome Viveiros.
- Comment: Click here.
This post treads the grounds of atheism; the 12-step plan; the nature of discussions with theists; and critical thinking. They’re views with which I agree; and I wanted to augment them; but such a good job had the blogger done that I found it difficult to add value. I did manage to find something, eventually, but I also raised questions as to whether it is necessarily a good thing to cover all the bases, or whether a blog should leave room for others to contribute. He didn’t seem to mind this question as he liked my comment. I also, shamelessly, made reference to a couple of posts in my blog in the vain hope of attracting traffic.
Commenting on a post to which I am strongly opposed
It’s not too difficult to find posts on subjects such as clairvoyants, homoeopathy, creationism and the like. The problem with them, though, are that they are generally written by victims and not perpetrators; and they describe only the benefits of their experiences. And I don’t want to challenge them as these beliefs support them in a time of need. Tell a person that a homoeopathic remedy is a placebo, and it stops working. And so I turned my attention to those who practice such dark arts.
A search for the phychics, mediums, spiritualists and clairvoyants (i.e. the perpetrators and abusers) did succeed in finding a number of web sites, but they were all about self-promotion and selling their services; and none of them had a discussion forum. I guess that’s no surprise!
So I decided to return to home-territory to get this assignment finished.
Cricket (and Religion)
- Blog: Thoughtful Muslim.
- Article: Religion and Respect
- Author: Faraz Patel
- Comment: AWAITING MODERATION (but reproduced in full, below)
So in the interests of variety I opted to leave religion to one side and look for some cricket upon which to comment. But then, having search for “Cricket”, tags, I was drawn to this one that was more about religion than cricket. Oh well, I tried. My comment, if it fails the moderation process, was follows:
I agree with the principle that the respect in which Amla, Dravid and Gilchrist have nothing to do with their religion and everything to do with their deeds. And I concede that their religions have likely contributed to their personalities. But is this the only way to respect – not just from others but of oneself, too?
I am an atheist and a humanist, which means that my ethics have derived from family, friends, teachers, cricket captains and, yes, priests. But I’ve always been free to interpret their input, which means two things:
- I’m always open to new influences.
- My ethics are strong, not because they’re better than anyone else’s, but because I am personally invested in them and will follow them when it counts.
There simply is not enough time in one day to find four blogs to which I can add a meaningful comment – not if one also has to entertain a nine-year old boy, there isn’t. And now it’s two hours past midnight and I must publish and be damned by the Blogging University Police – leave them with just two comments; and a promise that I will make up for it.