Articulett on the OTF

Do you think someone of another faith-- say a Mormon-- could look at their faith the way you (an outsider) would and still maintain that faith? Or would they not really be seeing it as the outsider does? What would it take for you to accept their faith? Do you have that kind of evidence for your own supernatural beliefs? Do you think the reincarnationist has the kind of evidence you'd require to believe in reincarnation? Do you think you should have the same kind of evidence to believe whatever you believe happens after death that you'd require to believe in reincarnation?

These are the kinds of things that the OTF encourages others to consider. John came to understand that his former beliefs were wrong and he developed the OTF as a tool so that others might see how he came to that conclusion. I'm sure you and others with conflicting faiths believe that they have taken the OTF and passed. But the question is, are they really seeing their faith as an outsider does? If a Mormon passes the OTF in his own mind, you might conclude that he hasn't seen his faith the way you (as an outsider) does. Just as an outsider to your faith might conclude about you. Just because it doesn't help every person unbrainwash themselves, doesn't mean that the OTF isn't a useful tool for many.

I think everybody thinks they believe the supernatural things they do for good reasons. Sometimes stumbling on John's website makes one think a little deeper on that topic and consider if they might be as wrong as all those others whom they are SURE are wrong. Wouldn't you want a Muslim stumbling upon this site to consider that they might be as mistaken as they think the Christians are? Shouldn't every believer in the supernatural be considering this possibility since there is no method for distinguishing a true supernatural claim from a myth? The OTF shouldn't be a problem for a person who is sure their religion is good or true, right?

Shouldn't our level of belief correspond with the level of evidence? The skeptic's level of belief does. The believer in the supernatural does not. "That which is asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence." "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence". The supernatural beliefs you believe in have no more real evidence supporting them than the supernatural beliefs you reject... but you believe them anyhow, because someone convinced you that you are "saved" for believing them-- not because they have a chance in hell of being true. This is the same reason that Muslims belief that Mohummed flew on a horse and that Christians go to hell for worshiping Jesus as a god. It's a great way to manipulate people into believing in certain kinds of magic-- but it's not a good method for anybody who is interested in the truth. You can tell because the kinds of manipulations you use to try to get others to buy your claims would not work to get you to believe the supernatural claims of others.

The bible is not an authority on anything to an outsider-- it means as little to us as the Quran or Book of Mormon mean to you. Who cares if believers in these things think they contain magical words on how to solve disputes between believers? Clearly the words were never enough to stop holy wars (or the Inquisition). We don't consider any books to be divinely inspired because we don't believe in divine beings. To an outsider, these books seem very human-- not divine in any way shape or form. You rest your whole supernatural belief system on the idea that your holy book is the word of the hypothetical "uncaused first cause" of the universe (who became his own son) and that you know what it means!

Naturally, we scoff.We reject your faith for the same reasons you reject all those other cults, superstitions, conflicting religions, magical beings, fairies, gods of yore, invisible supermen, etc. There isn't enough evidence to accept the magical stuff as anything more than a myth.It seems to me that John's definition of faith is spot on! You are clearly as unlikely to change your mind about your magical beliefs as a Muslim is... or Mormon... or Scientologist... or to understand that to an outsider, your reasons for believing your "woo" is no more convincing than their reasons for believing theirs.

So, naturally, as an outsider to your faith (most of us are former believers) you look as brainwashed to us as they do to you. You all look like you are leaping over probabilities to confirm your respective biases. How do you imagine you are different? You would need to give us the kind of evidence you'd require to take their supernatural beliefs seriously if you wanted us to do the same for yours. And you haven't. No theist has. It's all word games.