You Can't Win An Argument
I was thumbing through an old book by Dale Carnegie called How to Win Friends & Influence People. It was first published in 1936 with several revisions over the years. This must've been one of the first self-help books ever written. It is simply amazing that after so many years, wars have been fought, technology has advanced, economies have gone boom and bust, yet this book is still as relevant today as it was back in 1936, because human nature hasn't changed one bit.
Anyway, I came across a section that says you can never win an argument. I was instantly reminded of the debates between atheists and theists. Generally, atheists do not constantly engage theists to argue about each other's beliefs, but some, like Sam Harris (I noticed), do participate in a number of such debates. Personally, I think Sam argues very well, always rational, always interesting but how many of his opponents did he manage to convince that there is no god? Even Richard Dawkins - the most famous atheist in the world - only claims to have ever had one convert - his friend, Douglas Adams. Dale Carnegie wrote that, "A man convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still." You may be right, but as far as changing another's mind is concerned, you will probably be just as futile as if you were wrong.
So, with this little piece of wisdom, it's basically pointless arguing with people about their religion, even if you think they are wrong. I also feel that when talking to theists, there is no need for me to justify my beliefs, unless I'm asked about it. I will just remind theists (if they need reminding) that everyone is free to believe whatever they want. I will also stress that I'm not possessed by demons (I get accused of that sometimes!). As far as this blog is concerned, some of the issues I write about here are not written to ridicule theistic beliefs. That's simply because they're not written for theists. They're written mainly for those in the middle-ground - people who care about the truth, people who're a bit uncertain about the uncertainties of life and who'd like to hear alternative, secular views on things. I do apologize, though, if some might find my writings offensive. Anyway, don't forget to read my mission statement.
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