This is ridiculously long. Apologies. If we were together drinking coffee, laughing, and being serious, I would be just as long, but i am actually good listener as well. If you read this whole thing. Well, good luck. Try to find the positive i am saying because there is no intentional negativity. Let me know if you find some.
I want to apologize for wording my question so awkwardly. There was no “impure” or hidden (@widdershins) motive or anything of that nature.
But, I do want to thank you for your answers.
@3point13rat did a great job of cutting throw the junk, throwing it aside without prejudice, found the question and gave an answer. That was nicely done. And, your answer was indeed a genuine personal, honest presentation of your motivations. BTW. I agreed with everything you said regarding your motivations, what you desire, and wish to see. Oh, and this got longer when i went back and saw that he said “hope he comes back and reads our replies.”
It is interesting to note the depth of distrust that exist on both sides. I see the same thing happen when an atheist or humanist enters a Christian site. They are frequently approached with mistrust and every word is measured for hidden meaning instead of trying to hear what the person is saying or asking. It is hard to do. I actually quit participating in such forums years ago (I am older) because of the behavior which was quite uncivil. And, I do mean by everyone, so-called Christians and opponents. Lots of people are writing just to see their words in print instead of learning or genuine understanding. So it gets ugly.
As I said, I am not concise. i just read a couple other posts before leaving. I actually enjoy the exchange. And, as one said, I would like to thank i am not shrinking violet, but whatever Sherlock Holmes is, I don’t think I am or don’t want to be.
I was thinking about pulling up stakes here and moving on, but because of a couple of rather “nice” overtures, I will not yet. I will watch my notifications for a couple of days and see if anything comes up to follow up on.
As I said, I dropped in with the ridiculous mistaken notion that I was going to drop a quarter in the machine and win a prize just like that. This is a discussion forum with all kinds of people (as has been pointed out) where people come to relax, enjoy, have fun, learn, share…and I am a dumb piece of red meat in the water coming here interrupting the flow. I actually deserve the distrust, not because of what I have done, but I am in your home asking dumb, not well thought out questions. So, I get it. I do that sometimes.
I also believe the moderator who said that many have entered here saying something similar and then veered in some other direction. I think we have all seen that in most forums. However, in this unique case, I am teaching a class in which clashing worldviews will be presented as a part. I can read the Humanist Manifesto. I can (and have) read books or essays. I can listen to debates on youtube, etc… But, I do like listening to actual people, real people.
I did make a couple of miscalculations here for which I am now aware. The man tenets of humanism is embraced by such a diversity of thinkers and practitioners just like in the Christian faith or any other logic system. That was mistake number one. I was on a quest with just one portrait in mind and dropped in with that imaginary person in mind and I offended real people by mentioning militancy and relativity. Yes, the Christian faith is also militant in its devotion and callings, granted. So, mentioning militancy was not, in my application here, was not an insult. It is a description of devotion and commitment to a cause which we all possess.
As you can see, I am never short on words. I am not concise. Sometimes, that works out OK and sometimes, it is an obstacle.
There was not one syllable of hidden disrespect, but there was wordy awkward clumsiness because I was not clear even with myself what I was looking for and may have been looking in the wrong place. Perhaps, I should have just called the local humanist association and spoke to a professor. So, the quick wrong assumptions about motives and actual real agendas, though completelty understandable, is the same stuff that has polluted man’s interactions down through history just as some of the extreme episodes some mentioned that led to horrible treatment of each other. We still do it all the time. It is hard to change.
I think my question is really an epistemological question that involves existentialist thinking, postmodern structures and relativity and the development of /creation of self according to newly freshly minted paradigms, then forcing others to live within them by penalty. I think that kind of stuff is rolling around in my head. It is informing, unconsciously, what I am asking. And, it created a shambles to lay before such a broad collection of members. It is not about facts or science. We all have access to the same set of facts. We sift the facts through different through different filters; then prioritize the data points differently. Also informing my visit to your site is the obvious world view clash taking place loud and out front in our culture which is at least two (or more) world views clashing like tectonic plates shifting underground. But, again, all this is working behind the scenes in my mind and I just dropped in here like a bull in a china shop as the old saying goes.
I think I have decided to say good bye here. Thank you. If anyone feels like you would like to engage in private discussion, maybe this site allows you to PM me. Feel free. However, I think I am fishing in the wrong place for the fish that I am looking for and that would not be the first time.
I am not running away. i just think I need to better define what i am looking for and consider where the answers are that I am really seeking. Best wishes to all of you. Thank you for taking time to engage me. I hope you find joy and satisfaction in all you do.
And, may God bless you on your journey.
Oh. I do not believe in magic. There is not such thing. It is interesting that in the same thread, I will both be lumped with those who killed those who were charged with magic arts and also be charged as one who practices or believes in magic and scolded that my magic is the most harmful, destructive force in society. NOrmally and rightly, majorities usually outlaw, penalize, marginalize, punish those who practice thinking and behaviors that they believe threaten the health of their society. What do you think?
Ok. that’s it for now. Somehow, the paragraphs got out of order. Don’t know what i did. But, I will leave it as it is.