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The Altruist-Collectivist Mentality and the Revival of Mysticism

November 5, 2010

Capitalism is the economic and political recognition of the virtue of individualism. Businessmen or capitalists produce goods and services beneficial for the survival of man not for charity but for profits. This is because the ethical basis of capitalism does not lie on the altruist dogma that this system stands for the best way to attain the greater good. Its ethical basis lies in the fact that it is the only political-economic system consistent with the nature of the individual, that it upholds individual rights, and that its fundamental criterion is Justice.

  • NOTE: This blog article is my response to a commenter.

For over two thousand years the world witnessed the great battle between two famous ancient philosophers: Aristotle and Plato. Aristotle was the first intellectual who defined and classified the various branches of knowledge, which he then sorted into physics, metaphysics, psychology, rhetoric, poetics, and logic. Thus, it was Aristotle who laid down the foundation of most of the sciences of today.

If Plato formulated most of philosophy’s basic questions—and doubts,  Aristotle provided most of the answers.

In his essay entitled The Duel Between Plato and Aristotle, Dr. Leonard Peikoff[1] states that for two thousand years, Western history was expressed by a philosophic duel between Aristotle and Plato. He argued that Plato was the first thinker who systematized “other-wordliness”, as his metaphysics supports the primacy of consciousness over reality, his epistemology, intrinsicism, and his ethics, the morality of sacrifice. On the other hand, Peikoff argued that Aristotle was the first intellectual to systematize worldliness. This is because Aristotle’s metaphysics supports the primacy of existence over consciousness; his epistemology, the absoluteness of reason, his ethics, the morality of self-interest or personal happiness.

“The Dark Ages were dark on principle. As the barbarians were sacking the body of Rome, the Church was struggling to annul the last vestiges of its spirit, wrenching the west away from nature, astronomy, philosophy, nudity, pleasure, instilling in men’s souls the adoration of Eternity, with all its temporal consequences.”

Dr. Peikoff[2] writes:

“Plato himself, thanks to the influence of paganism, was more wordly than his followers in Christendom–or in Königsberg. Aristotle, thanks to the influence of Plato, never became completely Aristotelian; although his discoveries made possible all future intellectual progress, his system in every branch retained a sizable remnant of intrinsicism. Plato’s followers included philosophers of genius, who finally stripped from his ideas every form of inconsistency and cover-up. Aristotle’s followers–aside from Thomas Aquinas, who wrote as a faithful son of the Church–were lesser men, unable to purify or even fully grasp the master’s legacy.

“The first battle in the historical duel was won decisively by Plato, through the work of such disciples as Plotinus and Augustine.

“The Dark Ages were dark on principle. As the barbarians were sacking the body of Rome, the Church was struggling to annul the last vestiges of its spirit, wrenching the west away from nature, astronomy, philosophy, nudity, pleasure, instilling in men’s souls the adoration of Eternity, with all its temporal consequences.”

If one seeks reliable historical proof that Aristotle’s influence was one of the most important aspects in the ancient world, one only needs to look at Alexander the Great. The greatest conqueror, who was personally tutored by Aristotle, envisioned the creation of the first library on earth: the Library of Alexandria where most of the things we study today in Physics, Geometry, Medicine, Mathematics, Astronomy, Astrology, etc. were discovered and developed. After Aristotle’s death, it was said that he willed his own library to the Library of Alexandria, which was the first center of education and research known to man.[3]

The Library of Alexandria, established in 323 BC during the reign of Ptolemy I Soter in Alexandria, Egypt, was said to have contained several hundreds of thousand books written by ancient scholars, philosophers, mathematicians, thinkers, poets, and so on. However, this great library of research and learning was destroyed due to the following man-made catastrophes:

But what we all know today is this ancient great palace of learning was destroyed by two destructive religions strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason: Christianity and Islam.

Following the destruction of the Library of Alexandria was centuries after centuries of religious wars, widespread poverty and stagnation. With the rise of Christianity and Islam, the influences of Aristotle and other pro-science and pro-reason philosophers in the ancient world were buried into oblivion.

Christianity or the Vatican City ruled by the Pope reached the pinnacle of its religious reign in what is known today as the Dark Ages. In 1150 AD, the concept of Papal Infallibity was established, making the Pope the sole representative of God on earth.

According to Joseph de Maistre, “[i]nfallibility in the spiritual order and sovereignty in the temporal order are two perfectly synonymous words.”[4]

Louis Veuillot wrote: “We must affirm squarely the authority and omnipotence of the pope as the source of all authority, spiritual and temporal. The proclamation of the infallibility of the pope has no other objective.”[5]

Several hundreds years after the proclamation of the supreme religious power of the Pope, Galileo Galelei was prosecuted and then imprisoned by the Catholic order for defending heliocentrism, which was against biblical passages. These holy citations are found in Psalm 93:1, 96:10, and 1 Chronicles 16: 30, which states that the “world is firmly established, it cannot be moved.” Also, in Psalm 104:5, it is stated that, “the Lord set the earth on its foundations; it can never be moved.” Further, Ecclesiastes 1:5 states that “And the sun rises and sets and returns to its place”

Because the Catholic Church exercised absolute political and religious power over individuals and because the whole European society had not yet discovered the proper concepts of individual rights and freedom, Galileo had to persuade the religious authorities not to ban Copernicus’ ideas, which were against the Catholic belief. There was no such a thing as individual rights or individual freedom during that period. There was only absolute religious order and dogma. Self-interest was regarded as evil because it is totally inconsistent with Catholic doctrines and beliefs.

Today because of the following rational concepts and secular principles—separation of church and state, individual rights, freedom of expression, etc.—we can now freely express our minds and even challenge the doctrines and beliefs of any religion

Today because of the following rational concepts and secular principles—separation of church and state, individual rights, freedom of expression, etc.—we can now freely express our minds and even challenge the doctrines and beliefs of any religion.

In the 12th century AD or nearly one thousand years after the destruction of the Library of Alexandria, St. Thomas Aquinas, who was regarded as the apostle of reason, reintroduced the works and philosophy of Aristotle. He then declared that faith and reason can coexist.[6] Aquinas’ work, which was mainly founded on the Aristotelian philosophy, is known as Thomistic Scholasticism. In 1277, most of his Aristotelian proposals were condemned in Oxford and Paris for being secular.[7]

Due to the revival of Aristotelian influence by Aquinas, many thinkers in the Dark Ages sought to promote and defend reason. This saw the revolt of reason against religious dogma and mysticism.

According to Dr. David Anderson, Aristotle’s influence led to the birth of reason or what is known today as the Age of Enlightenment.[8]

Dr. Anderson wrote: “The Enlightenment was a celebration of human reason, and it rose like a beast out of the sea of the Dark Ages, an age when revelation reigned supreme. The celebration of human reason is the corner stone of modernism., where there is a blatant disregard for revelation and a high regard for reason; where Nature is the sole, impersonal, guiding intelligence of the universe, where the Word of God is considered as relevant as the proclamations of Zeus, where human reason is the sole measurement of ethics, morality, and freedom.”[9]

John Cottingham, in his book entitled Western Philosophy: An Anthology, wrote:

“Aristotle was greatly revered in the early Middle Ages, when after the period of chaos known as the “dark ages”, his ideas where gradually introduced to Western Europe, initially via the writings of the great Islamic philosophers and scholars of the tenth and eleventh centuries. The general thrust of Aristotle’s ‘hylemosphism’ is away from the notion of a soul as a separate entity distinct from the body; and this left some problems from the Christian philosopher-theologians of the Middle Ages, notably Thimas Aquinas, who set themselves the task of reconciling the principles of Aristotle’s philosophy with the doctrines of the Church.”[10]

Another historian Peter Charles Hoffer also said that Aristotle’s works were preserved and studied in the Dark Ages, and philosophers and thinkers relied on his ideas to defend the life of the mind.[11]

Among the thinkers influenced by Aristotle was Thomas Paine who published the Age of Reason in 1795.[12] Paine wrote that the “most detestable wickedness, the most horrid cruelties, and the greatest miseries, that have afflicted he human race, have had their origin in this thing called revelation, or revealed religion.” This revelation, according to Paine, has been “the most dishonorable belief against the character of the divinity, the most destructive to morality, and the peace and happiness of man, that ever was propagated since man began to exist.”

Other great thinkers who accepted Aristotle’s works were Rene Descartes, John Locke, Edward Gibbons, and the founding fathers of the United States.

But it was the founding of America, the first constitutional republic on earth, in 1776 that Aristotle’s ideas were put into practice. A proper philosophical understanding of the ideas of Aristotle reveals that he advocated the form of government that would protect the rights of every individual member.

Dr. Bill Choby wrote, in his book entitled Liberty in America, Past, Present and Future: A Prescription for America:

“According to Aristotle, this form of government [that protects individual rights] would provide the means to protect the different customs and traditions unique to its citizens, instead of standardizing them to a form that everyone would be forced to follow. According to this viewpoint, the preservation of the differences between people loomed as an avenue to protect the individual and his family from the total control of government. In this sense, Aristotle’s viewpoints were very similar to those of our own Thomas Jefferson.”[13]

Dr. Choby also distinguished the political philosophy between Aristotle and Plato. If Aristotle’s ideas uphold individual rights and a non-intrusive government, Plato, according to Choby, “called for an absolute communism of property, wealth and families.” He argued that Aristotle “believed that the collective ownership of property, i.e. communism, would encourage people toward irresponsible behavior, since property that is the responsibility of everyone becomes the responsibility of no one.” He added that Aristotle focused on the ideal connection between a good and just government and the individual.

This confirms the fact that Aristotle is the first intellectual and advocate of individualism. He understood that individualism requires the protection of the individual’s rights to life, liberty, property, and his pursuit of happiness, ideals which were incorporated by the United States of America in its Declaration of Independence written by Jefferson and in the American Constitution.

In Politics, Aristotle’s description of a good government that protects the rights of its individual members shows that what is important is not the legal mechanism of the state but individuals free to pursue their aspirations nd conduct their lives without intrusion by the state. In fact, it was Aristotle who first tackled the concept of check and balance, which was later on adopted by the founding fathers of the United States. Aristotle urged that the only path to checking and balancing political power was through the influence of cultures and family communities.

“In short, the philosopher suggested that the preservation of individual’s liberty was a necessary social alternative to repressive collectivism. In other words, big government!” wrote Choby.[14]

History has it that before the concretization of Aristotle’s ideas by the founding fathers of America, science, reason, and economic progress were repressed by religion, dogmatism, mysticism, and the absolute monarchs of the medieval ages.

History has it that before the concretization of Aristotle’s ideas by the founding fathers of America, science, reason, and economic progress were repressed by religion, dogmatism, mysticism, and the absolute monarchs of the medieval ages.

It was said that the first light bulb, battery and steam engine were discovered and invented centuries before the birth of Christianity.[15] The question is: Why is it that these inventions and discoveries failed to benefit men during those epochs? Why is it that they perished along with their inventors or with the ancient societies where they were discovered?

The only possible answer is because of the fact that not a single society that protected individual rights to life, liberty, property, and one’s pursuit to happiness existed during those ancient eras. The whole world believed that the earth was flat despite the scientific challenge of the scientists and thinkers in the Medieval Ages. But how could they challenge a religious dogma if the Pope was proclaimed to be infallible? Today we all know that the earth is round, that the sun is the center of the universe, and that there are billions of planets and suns and galaxies in the universe because of science made possible by our rights-based political system.

A defense that religion or the Catholic Church supported and protected science and reason in the Dark Ages is both a historical lie and a deliberate attempt to rewrite history. If the Catholic Church truly supported science and reason, why did it prosecute and imprison Galileo for merely challenging a Catholic dogma? Why did the thinkers, philosophers, scientists, and artists have to go underground and form secret societies in order to avoid the Church’s pogroms? And why did science not truly develop during the centuries-long reign of Catholic Church?

Today we enjoy the wonders of science and technology because of the very existence of a political system that supports and protects freedom, individual rights, rational legal principles, and reason: Capitalism.

It is true that the term “capitalism” was first used by Karl Marx to somehow refute the pro-capitalist thinkers before his time. Karl Marx’s book, Das Kapital, is actually his refutation to Adam Smith ideas. However, this doesn’t mean that it was Karl Marx who conceptualized the idea of capitalism. The truth is, he utterly rejected capitalism. In fact, Marx understood the productiveness of capitalism, however, he disapprove of it because according to his philosophy, it is immoral.[16]

According to Dillon and Wykoff, Karl Marx thought capitalism was immoral because by definition “a few who owned the means of production were rich, while many who owned nothing were poor.”[17]

These words directly came from the two mystics who advocated communism and who, like the Catholic Church, rejected reason, therefore any modern man who does not appreciate the productiveness of capitalism is either stupid or dishonest.

Despite disparaging capitalism, both Marx and his co-author Friedrich Engels admired capitalism for its productiveness. They wrote that the bourgeoisie—

“has accomplished wonders far surpassing the Egyptian pyramids, Roman aqueducts, the Gothic cathedrals… [D]uring its rule of scarcely one hundred years, it has created more massive and more colossal productive forces than have all preceding generations together.”

These words directly came from the two mystics who advocated communism and who, like the Catholic Church, rejected reason, therefore any modern man who does not appreciate the productiveness of capitalism is either stupid or dishonest. As stated, Marx’s Das Kapital aimed to show the errors of Smith and David Ricardo. Referring to Adam Smith’s argument that the working class would gain benefit from more machinery and the division of labor, the grand father of communism wrote in Das Kapital:

“Adam Smith, by a fundamentally perverted analysis, arrives at [this] absurd conclusion… In truth, Adam Smith breaks his investigation off, just where its difficulties begin.”

Instead of presenting the economic value of socialism, Marx enumerated the evils of capitalism, namely, capitalists trying to corner or maintain profits for themselves; prevention of workers’ wages from rising; and increases in labor productivity would not benefit workers.

John Taylor wrote in his book Principles of Microeconomics: “Although socialism may have originally seemed like an attractive alternative to the market system, socialism’s own severe problems eventually became obvious. Surprisingly, however, Marx wrote almost nothing about how a socialist economy would work. His writings focused entirely on capitalism.”[18] This simply shows that Marx’s Das Kapital is nothing but a rehash Smith book, The Wealth of Nations.

On the other hand, as already stated, individualism was founded on the philosophy of Aristotle. According to him, the Individual is the primary reality.  In fact, Aristotle’s political individualism displays a profound metaphysical dedication to the individual.

Edward Zeller observed this as one of the fundamental aspects of Aristotle’s divergence from his teacher Plato:

“In politics as in metaphysics the central point with Plato is the Universal, with Aristotle the Individual. The former demands that the whole should realize its ends without regard to the interests of the individuals: the latter that it should be reared upon the satisfaction of all individual interests that have a true title to be regarded.”[19]

Also, Aristotle’s theory of political justice is fully consistent with a theory of rights because he understood the concept of justice— not communal or social justice—in an individualistic sense. In effect, the Aristotelian concept of justice rejects the theory of “social justice” conceptualized by John Rawls, a modern-day legal philosopher.

This shows that Aristotle, for all his minor flaws, is the first individualist or defender of individualism in mankind’s history. It was Aristotle who laid down the metaphysical, epistemological, ethical, and political foundation of individualism. In ethics, individualism must be founded on the morality of self-interest, not self-immolation or self-sacrifice. Politically, individualism requires the establishment of a limited government that respects and recognizes the individual’s right to Life, Liberty, Property, and his pursuit of Happiness.

However, it is important to understand that there are fake advocates of individualism like William Maccall who published a book entitled The Elements of Individualism in 1847.[20]

Maccall, in his Articles of Faith, wrote:

“I believe that the grandest attribute of every Man is his individuality, and that the Mission of every Man consists in the Whole and Harmonious Development of his Individual Nature. I claim therefore nothing for myself, either as to faculty or as to mission, which I do not claim for the whole of the human race.”

This exposes Maccall’s anti-self type of individualism, the metaphysics and ethics of which fundamentally rely on faith, religion and “divine revelation”. That is, Maccall’s alleged individualism is fundamentally attached to what he calls “Divine” and commitment to God, as he believed that “the more human an individual, the diviner he is.”[21]

Maccall further wrote:

“I believe that the Revelations of God are perpetual, and that every Individual, while a fresh Revelation of God and of the Universe, is the highest of all Revelations to himself.”

The above-mentioned statement reveals that Maccall is nothing but a mystic and an irrationalist. Based on his mystical “individualism”, man’s purpose is to serve the will of an unknowable entity he calls “God”. This means that the Individual, to be moral, has to sacrifice himself to an unknown entity and to selflessly serve the welfare of others, as it is Maccall’s belief that the “nature of the Individual ought not to be interpreted by sacred books, but that sacred books ought all to be interpreted by the Nature of the Individual.”

He then argued that this proposition “strikes at all religious infallibility, for it maters not whether we make a book or a man or a company of men a standard of theological infallibility; the result is the same wherever we admit the standard of infallibility to reside.”

Maccall sought not to promote and defend the real essence of individualism, but to save the deteriorating influence of the Catholic Church in the 18th century.

Maccall’s monistic philosophical approach to understanding the concept of individualism clearly smacks of utter dogmatism and ignorance of the nature of man. He is, in reality, an advocate of theological collectivism, which demands the individual’s absolute, unconditional obedience and submission to religious order. Maccall sought not to promote and defend the real essence of individualism, but to save the deteriorating influence of the Catholic Church in the 18th century.

Joseph Hamburger observed Maccall’s focus on religion, on faith and on divine revelation, thus rejecting the latter’s concept of individualism.

Hamburger wrote:

“Maccal’s individuality, like Mill’s, was at war with Conventionalism and also with selfishness… Opposition to convention led to spontaneity and diversity (called multiformity) which, however, would be compatible with unity in the future. Maccal’s conception of individuality, moreover, was anything but individualistic, for, like Mill’s, it emphasized responsibility to others and it rejected isolation and selfishness. He regarded humans as sympathetic beings, that is, capable of altruism.”[22]

Altruism means “selfless” concern for the welfare of others. Altruism is not synonymous to charity, because in truth and in reality, altruism makes charity impossible, as it imposes obligation on the individual to put the interest and welfare of others above his own.

Relying on Aristotle’s philosophy, philosopher Ayn Rand offered the most proper definition of individualism, by identifying its metaphysical, epistemological, ethical, and political foundation. Both Aristotle and Ayn Rand reject the morality of altruism. Aristotle rejects altruism because he champions rational egoism. For example in his theory of friendship in Nichomachaean Ethics, the philosopher contends that an individual must befriend himself first before he can befriend others.

On the other hand, Ayn Rand rejects altruism because according to her, “the basic principle of altruism is that man has no right to exist for his own sake, that service to others is the only justification of his existence, and that self-sacrifice is his highest moral duty, virtue and value.”

Ayn Rand wrote in the Virtue of Selfishness:

“Individualism regards man—every man—as an independent, sovereign entity who possesses an inalienable right to his own life, a right derived from his nature as a rational being. Individualism holds that a civilized society, or any form of association, cooperation or peaceful coexistence among men, can be achieved only on the basis of the recognition of individual rights—and that a group, as such, has no rights other than the individual rights of its members.”

This means that in order for an Individual to exist as a human being, his rights must be respected and recognized by the state and his fellowmen. The concept of individualism is thus founded on the following:

  • Metaphysics: Objective reality, which means that Man’s nature requires the protection of his rights and that Man is an end in himself, not the means to the ends of others
  • Epistemology: Reason, which means that Man, in order to survive, must not go against reality and must not initiate the use of force.
  • Ethics: Rational self-interest, which means that Man must neither sacrifice himself to others nor sacrifice others to himself.
  • Politics: Capitalism, which means that Man must be free to pursue his goals, that he must be free from state interference, that all human relationships are voluntary, and that Man’s rights must be protected and respected.

Individualism and capitalism are metaphysically, morally and politically consistent with each other. One cannot exist without the other. Capitalism can neither exist nor flourish in a collectivist, anti-individualist society, while individualism is opposed to the morality of altruism or self-sacrifice and the politics of collectivism.

Science develops and grows in an individualist-capitalist society for the very reason that individual rights, particularly property rights, are duly protected by the state through the implementation of rational and objective rule of law.

Science develops and grows in an individualist-capitalist society for the very reason that individual rights, particularly property rights, are duly protected by the state through the implementation of rational and objective rule of law. The world saw rapid development and progress of science over the past 200 years due to the fact that property rights and intellectual property rights were in place to protect the rights and interests of inventors, scientists, manufacturers, book authors, artists, and creators of productive ideas and wealth.

Since intellectual property rights was formally implemented in the Unites States, many inventors and scientists over the past 200 years left Europe to practice their profession in the New World. This is the reason why most of the productive and useful inventions we use today were discovered and developed in the United States. And it is America’s system of capitalism that made those inventions and discoveries possible for mass production.

Capitalism is the economic and political recognition of the virtue of individualism. Businessmen or capitalists produce goods and services beneficial for the survival of man not for charity but for profits. This is because the ethical basis of capitalism does not lie on the altruist dogma that this system stands for the best way to attain the greater good. Its ethical basis lies in the fact that it is the only political-economic system consistent with the nature of the individual, that it upholds individual rights, and that its fundamental criterion is Justice.


[1] Peikoff, L. (1991). The Duel Between Plato and Aristotle, in Objectivism the Philosophy of Ayn Rand. New York: Dutton.

[2] Ibid

[3] French, R.K. & French, R. (1994). Ancient Natural History: Histories of Nature. New York: Routledge

[4] Tierney, B. (1972). Origins of Papal Infallibility: 1150-1350.

[5] http://www.bringyou.to/apologetics/num40.htm

[6] Anderson, D.R. (2010). Free Grace Soteriology.

[7] Ibid

[8] Ibid

[9] Ibid

[10] Cottingham, J. (1996). Western Philosophy: An Anthology.

[11] Hoffer, P.C. (2008). The Historians’ Paradox: The Study of History in our Time.

[12] Paine, T. (2009). The Age of Reason. Bibliobazaar.

[13] Choby, B. (2010). Liberty in America, Past, Present and Future: A Prescription for America.

[14] Ibid

[15] James, P. & Thorpe, N. (1995). Ancient Inventions. Ballantine Books

[16] World Book (2000). The World Book Encyclopedia.

[17] Dillon, P. & Wkoff, F.C. (2002). Creating Capitalism: Transitions and Growth in Post-Soviet Europe. Edward Elgar Pub.

[18] Taylor, J. (2006). Principles of Macroeconomics. Cengage Learning.

[19] Gerson, L.P. (1999). Aristotle: Politics, Rhetoric and Aesthetics. Francis and Taylor

[20] Maccall, W. (1847). The Elements of Individualism: A Series of Lectures. Google Book

[21] Ibid, p.4

[22] Hamburger, J. (2001). John Stuart Mill on Liberty and Control. Princeton University Press.

30 Comments leave one →
  1. xyxy permalink
    November 5, 2010 3:38

    You should consider putting some CAPTCHA in the comments section. Spam’s everywhere!

    • November 5, 2010 3:38

      Sorry I’m not a techie person. I should be deleting these “wise” spams.

  2. November 5, 2010 3:38

    1. According to some authoritative references, it was never confirmed that the Library of Alexandria was categorically destroyed by Christians or Muslims. Orosius and Mostafa El-Abbadi wrote from their books that the library could not have survived during the promulgation of Theodosius’ decree in 391. As for the Muslim conquest, there is no agreement among scholars as to whether this story should be believed, and never has been. However, Plutarch, Aulus Gellius, Ammianus Marcellinus, and Orosius verified Caesar’s accidental fire and Aurelian’s attack on Alexandria. And even if we supposed the two religions did obliterate the library, the reason could not have been that they “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” since both religions have sponsored many scholars and priests to study different branches of science, known then as “natural philosophy”.

    2. Dark Ages is a term referring to the “perceived period” of both cultural and economic deterioration. It has been designated sometime in the early Middle Ages; not the entire era. It was during this time when Theodosius I established Christianity as the official religion in 380 A.D. So it is totally fallacious to conclude that such religion already “reached the pinnacle of its religious reign” during this period. It should also be noted that the Dark Ages occurred after the decline of the Roman Empire. The empire collapsed resulting from the gradual disintegration of political, economic, military, and other social institutions, and barbarian invasions. And the domino effects of destruction were all attributed to the Roman Empire’s self-destructive form of government called Autocracy, where its rulers possess unlimited power and embodied themselves as “Gods”. And like all tyrants, despots and dictators in history who oppress, rob, threaten and kill the people they are serving, their reign of terror ended in bloody conspiracy, assassination or shame, and left their territories with untold desolation and impoverishment. Therefore, the consequential effects of Roman Empire’s corrosion were the culprit for the societal decay of that era, and it could not have been attributed to the Catholic Church or other religion for that matter.

    3. It should be noted that during Galileo’s trial, the Catholic Church had a group of scientists who opposed his heliocentric theory. It’s true that the Catholic clergy with their scientists could not reconcile Galileo’s sun-centered hypothesis to their “literal” interpretation of the Scripture. However, in 1758, the Catholic Church dropped the general prohibition of books advocating heliocentrism from the Index of Forbidden Books. Then Copernicus’s De Revolutionibus and Galileo’s Dialogue were then subsequently omitted from the next edition of the Index when it appeared in 1835. Then in 2000, Pope John Paul II issued a formal apology for all the mistakes committed by some Catholics in the last 2,000 years of the Catholic Church’s history, including the trial of Galileo among others. Therefore, the Church’s official admission of their past mistake and the extending of apology to Galileo confirmed their genuine support for Science and their vow of not committing the same error of “literal’ interpretation of the Bible in the pursuit of scientific truth. That is the whole story.

    4. Altruism is selfless concern for the welfare of others, and the opposite of selfishness. Unlike “individualism”, it is not a 19th-century-invented “ideology” but a traditional virtue in many cultures, and a core aspect of various religious traditions. So altruism is a natural characteristic of human beings. In fact, this intrinsic quality has been studied in scientific fields of Anthropology, Neurobiology and Genetics. Researchers on alleged altruist behaviours among animals have been ideologically opposed to the sociological social Darwinist concept of the “survival of the fittest”, under the name of “survival of the nicest”. Neuroscientists provided the first evidence for the neural bases of altruistic giving in normal healthy volunteers, using functional magnetic resonance imaging. As their experiments suggested, it was not a superior moral faculty that suppresses basic selfish urges but rather was basic to the brain, hard-wired and pleasurable.

    5. Capitalism, Individualism, Radicalism, Pacifism, Egalitarianism or any other -ism is optimistically ideal for people and state but not one is perfect. Aristotle may be historically significant in the area of philosophy but so as Plato and Aquinas. Aristotle’s vision for an Ideal State is everyone’s dream since time immemorial. But it is no better than Plato’s Republic or Thomas More’s Utopia. Whatever earthly paradise we pursue, synthetic ideology or any socio-economic-political system is worthless and futile unless the leaders of the state or nation cease from their graft and corrupt practices and begin to actually serve the people with all honesty and integrity. As Plato profoundly articulates:

    “Until philosophers rule as kings or those who are now called kings and leading men genuinely and adequately philosophise, that is, until political power and philosophy entirely coincide, while the many natures who at present pursue either one exclusively are forcibly prevented from doing so, cities will have no rest from evils,… nor, I think, will the human race.” (Republic 473c-d)

  3. November 5, 2010 3:38

    1. It’s like a person saying a certain house wasn’t destroyed by fire but by looters. You only need to see the whole context here and do not resort to crass history to prove your point. Well, I think you’d be interested to watch Agora, a newly released film that dramatizes the life of Library of Alexandria’s Hypatia.

    “And even if we supposed the two religions did obliterate the library, the reason could not have been that they “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” since both religions have sponsored many scholars and priests to study different branches of science, known then as “natural philosophy”.”

    — When? Any source?

    What kind of Catholic scholars were they? Scholars who believed that the Pope was infallible? Scholars who rejected individual rights? Scholars who never thought of the concept of “separation of church and state” that ended centuries of religious wars? Scholars who believed in an unknowable spiritual entity? Scholars who “somehow” rejected science and reason? Scholars who rejected freedom of expression? Heck, even the fat friars in the Philippines in the past 100 years were intolerant to free speech, science, and freedom! Proof? JOSE RIZAL!

    Here’s my answer: “A defense that religion or the Catholic Church supported and protected science and reason in the Dark Ages is both a historical lie and a deliberate attempt to rewrite history. If the Catholic Church truly supported science and reason, why did it prosecute and imprison Galileo for merely challenging a Catholic dogma? Why did the thinkers, philosophers, scientists, and artists have to go underground and form secret societies in order to avoid the Church’s pogroms? And why did science not truly develop during the centuries reign of the Catholic Church?”

    2. You said: “Dark Ages is a term referring to the “perceived period” of both cultural and economic deterioration. It has been designated sometime in the early Middle Ages; not the entire era.”

    So are you saying that religion did not cause this “perceived period” something? And who told this crass history again? It’s like economist Paul Krugman blaming free-market capitalism (which actually does not yet exist) for the global economic crisis instead of too much government intervention.

    Here are things that you should deal with since you try to evade the fact that religion played a BIG, indispensable role in causing this “perceived period” of both cultural and economic deterioration”:

    1. Was “REASON” allowed to flourish during the Dark Ages?
    2. What do you think was the impact of the “Infallibility of the Pope” on secular teachings, secular knowledge or activities and assertions like Galileo’s “heliocentric” defense
    3. Was there such a thing as “individual rights” during the Pope’s reign? If the answer is in the positive, was it respected and recognized by the Church?
    4. Why did the Church declare pogroms against heretics or “witchcraft?”
    5. Was there equality under the law (if objective laws ever existed) during the Pope’s reign?
    6. Was there separation of church and state? Since the answer is obviously “NONE”, what was the impact of the non-existence of “separation” on the lives of private individuals?

    3. On your Galileo rhetoric: Does that mean that the Church was wrong… or let say, evil? Does that mean that the Church was anti-reason, anti-reason, anti-rights, and anti-freedom?

    And why do you think the influence and power of the Church gradually declined? What was the main FACTOR of this decline? Was it because the Church was willing to give up its absolute political and religious power? Or was it because of some EXTERNAL factor? I hope you get my drift here.

    4. On your “altruism”: pure rhetoric. Besides, I don’t agree with Darwinism’s moral and epistemological approach.

    You said: “Researchers on alleged altruist behaviours among animals have been ideologically opposed to the sociological social Darwinist concept of the “survival of the fittest”, under the name of “survival of the nicest”.”

    “Altruist behavior among animals”? Just like the food chain? I think the food chain and the survival of the fittest explain how “selfish” animals are.
    Any source? Does that echo Richard Dawkins’ “selfish gene”?

    5. You said: “Capitalism, Individualism, Radicalism, Pacifism, Egalitarianism or any other -ism is optimistically ideal for people and state but not one is perfect.”

    So what’s the perfect “ism” for you? Collectivism? The Pope’s Infallible “ism”? Catholicism? Theocracy by the Catholic Church or any religion? Don’t be like Karl Marx who offered no explanation of how his communism works but attacked Adam Smith’s capitalism instead. By the way, I don’t agree with much of Smith’s theory.

    I observed your failure to distinguish between different concepts here. That’s the effect of mysticism, of believing in an unknowable entity they call… Flying Spaghetti Monster?. It’s like skepticism. It says: “nobody can be certain of anything but… GOD, maybe?”

    Kindly tell me what’s Aristotle’s “ideal state”? Did I not discuss it here?

    You have to deal with the following issues then?

    1. What’s your understanding of Aristotle’s individualism?
    2. Why did he put much emphasis on the individual, not the state or polis?
    3. Why did Aristotle put so much value on Eudaimonia?
    4. Why did he champion rational egoism or self-interest instead of altruism or self-sacrifice? What’s your understanding of Aristotelian “rational egoism”? Does it mean we should disregard the rights of others? Is that your interpretation of his ethics, if ever you understood it?
    5. Why do you think Aristotle’s “ideal state” is no better than Plato’s Utopia? Can you give the fundamental differences between the two philosophers’ political concepts/theories?
    6. So what works now? Catholicism? Theocracy? A rule by the Pope or by any God’s representative? A rule by a religious leader?
    7. What do you suggest since I observed your utter nihilism and mysticism?

    Well, it’s good you didn’t put up a crass defense of Maccall since his so-called “individualism”, which deserves to be called mystical collectivism, is totally indefensible.

  4. November 6, 2010 3:38

    1. Galileo’s heliocentric theory contradicted the “literal” interpretation of the Bible and then opposed by Catholic scientists. At the sentence of Inquisition, he was found “vehemently suspect of heresy” that led to his imprisonment and house arrest. But years passed, the Church admitted its mistake and apologized. After the Galileo affair, the Church continued to sponsor scholars for scientific endeavors. The Church might not have been that open-minded in finding truth basing from science at some point in history but no one can entirely conclude that the Church has resisted all scientific knowledge all throughout history. That is precisely my point. No more. No less. But if you think otherwise, that will be completely illogical. You are just attacking the Catholic Church or religion for the “wrong reasons”. Isn’t that what you PREACH?

    2. According to Encyclopedia Britannica: “Dark Ages, the early medieval period of western European history. Specifically, the term refers to the time (476–800) when there was no Roman (or Holy Roman) emperor in the West; or, more generally, to the period between about 500 and 1000, which was marked by frequent warfare and a virtual disappearance of urban life. It is now rarely used by historians because of the value judgment it implies. Though sometimes taken to derive its meaning from the fact that little was then known about the period, the term’s more usual and pejorative sense is of a period of intellectual darkness and barbarity…”

    Remember, Theodosius I established Christianity as the official religion in 380 A.D. But historically, the Early Middle Ages or Dark Ages began in 476 A.D. right after the decline of the Roman Empire. During this era, North Africa and the Middle East, once part of the Eastern Roman Empire, were conquered by Islam. Centuries of depopulation, deurbanization, and increased barbarian invasions continued until the 1000 A.D. It was only during High Middle Ages (1000 to 1300 A.D.) when Christian-oriented art and architecture flourished and Crusades were mounted to recapture the Holy Land. Hence, your assumption that the Catholic Church “reached the pinnacle of its religious reign” during the Dark Ages is nothing but speculative and baseless. So next time, read more about history. I mean – REAL HISTORY.

    3. Galileo rhetoric? I believe it’s more of Galileo “facts” because they were gathered from authoritative sources and not just merely “speculation”. During the Galileo’s trial, the Catholic Church did make a “mistake”. I already pointed that out on my last comment. Do you need me to REITERATE?

    4. On Altruism, I already provided you some excerpts on scientific studies made by neuroscientists and yet you disregard them. So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now? On “altruist behavior among animals”, try caring for a pet sometime. It might surprise you.

    5. So after capitalism & individualism, now nihilism and mysticism? Well, I think the only perfect –ism here is “froivinberism”. LOL Seriously, your –isms have blown out of proportion. Care for some sleepism? Oops.

    So after endowing you with all those factual details, you just regard them as “crass history”? I believe the correct term is “historical facts” which are gathered from authoritative sources. And the process I do is a called “fact-checking” to eliminate any accidental or deliberate error, inaccuracy or journalistic fraud from reportage that may somehow be committed by the author. In this case, I already “fact-checked” some of your articles. And I regret to inform you that I am quite displeased from your indolent retorts considering you seem to be knowledgeable. Well, façade can be deceiving sometimes.

    So if you think those historical details about Galileo’s affair, scientific studies about altruism, the period of Dark Ages, et al, are not “factual”, then try to disprove them by providing FACTS; and NOT by presenting a multitude of sweeping statements and immaterial questions; and certainly NOT by exclaiming more speculation based from your pre-conceived anti-religion & anti-history opinions. So try to think about it while I enjoy my weekend.🙂

    • November 6, 2010 3:38

      These are all forms of evasion. Are you a troll? Please answer the questions I made above.

  5. November 6, 2010 3:38

    @ freethinker2008:

    What planet are you from? Freethinker? Give me a break!

    You said: “Galileo’s heliocentric theory contradicted the “literal” interpretation of the Bible and then opposed by Catholic scientists. At the sentence of Inquisition, he was found “vehemently suspect of heresy” that led to his imprisonment and house arrest. But years passed, the Church admitted its mistake and apologized. After the Galileo affair, the Church continued to sponsor scholars for scientific endeavors. The Church might not have been that open-minded in finding truth basing from science at some point in history but no one can entirely conclude that the Church has resisted all scientific knowledge all throughout history. That is precisely my point. No more. No less. But if you think otherwise, that will be completely illogical. You are just attacking the Catholic Church or religion for the “wrong reasons”. Isn’t that what you PREACH?

    – Yeah, the Church continued to sponsor scholars for scientific endeavors and killed the “REAL” scientists and thinkers who opposed its agenda! Where the hell’s your source. You keep on making claims that never exist in history books!

    So you are defending the Church for the right reasons. Based on your illogical arguments, it seems that the “Dark Ages” and the Catholic inquisition did not exist! It seems that Jose Rizal was not murdered by the Catholic Church for writing a book! Drop your stupidity, man!

    2. So according to you, religion did not play a central role in the Catholic inquisition, the Dark Ages, and the oppression of scientists and thinkers! Wow! Why not make your own history book. It seems that arguing with a lunatic like you won’t make any sense at all lol!

    3. You said: “Galileo rhetoric? I believe it’s more of Galileo “facts” because they were gathered from authoritative sources and not just merely “speculation”. During the Galileo’s trial, the Catholic Church did make a “mistake”. I already pointed that out on my last comment. Do you need me to REITERATE?”

    But it’s not even about Galileo at all! So did the Catholic Church did a “mistake”? Your point is POINTLESS! That’s stupid history! Did the Church have any right to prosecute someone simply for challenging its views! In today’s terms, that kind of institution would be called EVIL! It’s not simply a mistake, as if your downgrading that kind of mistake! That’s IMMORAL and EVIL, period, and it simply shows that the Church suppressed science and reason! Only a lunatic person won’t get that.

    4. You said: “On Altruism, I already provided you some excerpts on scientific studies made by neuroscientists and yet you disregard them. So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now? On “altruist behavior among animals”, try caring for a pet sometime. It might surprise you.”

    Of course one has to disregard them because they’re INSANE! Where’s your source. And yes, what about Dawkins’ “SELFISH GENES!” As if those neuroscientists are infallible! Are you crazy?

    5. You said: ” So after capitalism & individualism, now nihilism and mysticism? Well, I think the only perfect –ism here is “froivinberism”. LOL Seriously, your –isms have blown out of proportion. Care for some sleepism? Oops.”

    Why not answer the questions posted by Vincenton? So you’re just a freethinker and that’s all? We can know nothing? What a crazy mind!

    Where the hell are your sources for your “historical facts”? Just a plain, stupid claim?

    If you really fact-checked the author’s article, kindly state what you found and do not merely make a claim.

  6. November 6, 2010 3:38

    @ freethinker2008:

    What planet are you from? Freethinker? Give me a break!

    You said: “Galileo’s heliocentric theory contradicted the “literal” interpretation of the Bible and then opposed by Catholic scientists. At the sentence of Inquisition, he was found “vehemently suspect of heresy” that led to his imprisonment and house arrest. But years passed, the Church admitted its mistake and apologized. After the Galileo affair, the Church continued to sponsor scholars for scientific endeavors. The Church might not have been that open-minded in finding truth basing from science at some point in history but no one can entirely conclude that the Church has resisted all scientific knowledge all throughout history. That is precisely my point. No more. No less. But if you think otherwise, that will be completely illogical. You are just attacking the Catholic Church or religion for the “wrong reasons”. Isn’t that what you PREACH?

    – Yeah, the Church continued to sponsor scholars for scientific endeavors and killed the “REAL” scientists and thinkers who opposed its agenda! Where the hell’s your source. You keep on making claims that never exist in history books!

    So you are defending the Church for the right reasons. Based on your illogical arguments, it seems that the “Dark Ages” and the Catholic inquisition did not exist! It seems that Jose Rizal was not murdered by the Catholic Church for writing a book! Drop your stupidity, man!

    2. So according to you, religion did not play a central role in the Catholic inquisition, the Dark Ages, and the oppression of scientists and thinkers! Wow! Why not make your own history book. It seems that arguing with a lunatic like you won’t make any sense at all lol!

    3. You said: “Galileo rhetoric? I believe it’s more of Galileo “facts” because they were gathered from authoritative sources and not just merely “speculation”. During the Galileo’s trial, the Catholic Church did make a “mistake”. I already pointed that out on my last comment. Do you need me to REITERATE?”

    But it’s not even about Galileo at all! So did the Catholic Church did a “mistake”? Your point is POINTLESS! That’s stupid history! Did the Church have any right to prosecute someone simply for challenging its views! In today’s terms, that kind of institution would be called EVIL! It’s not simply a mistake, as if your downgrading that kind of mistake! That’s IMMORAL and EVIL, period, and it simply shows that the Church suppressed science and reason! Only a lunatic person won’t get that.

    4. You said: “On Altruism, I already provided you some excerpts on scientific studies made by neuroscientists and yet you disregard them. So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now? On “altruist behavior among animals”, try caring for a pet sometime. It might surprise you.”

    Of course one has to disregard them because they’re INSANE! Where’s your source. And yes, what about Dawkins’ “SELFISH GENES!” As if those neuroscientists are infallible! Are you crazy?

    5. You said: ” So after capitalism & individualism, now nihilism and mysticism? Well, I think the only perfect –ism here is “froivinberism”. LOL Seriously, your –isms have blown out of proportion. Care for some sleepism? Oops.”

    Why not answer the questions posted by Vincenton? So you’re just a freethinker and that’s all? We can know nothing? What a crazy mind!

    You said: “So after endowing you with all those factual details, you just regard them as “crass history”? I believe the correct term is “historical facts” which are gathered from authoritative sources. And the process I do is a called “fact-checking” to eliminate any accidental or deliberate error, inaccuracy or journalistic fraud from reportage that may somehow be committed by the author.”

    Where the hell are your sources for your “historical facts”? Just a plain, stupid claim?

    If you really fact-checked the author’s article, kindly state what you found and do not merely make a claim.

  7. RT Gonzales permalink
    November 6, 2010 3:38

    Freethinker2008,

    Interesting discussion, but I think I need to repost this:

    1. Was “REASON” allowed to flourish during the Dark Ages?
    2. What do you think was the impact of the “Infallibility of the Pope” on secular teachings, secular knowledge or activities and assertions like Galileo’s “heliocentric” defense
    3. Was there such a thing as “individual rights” during the Pope’s reign? If the answer is in the positive, was it respected and recognized by the Church?
    4. Why did the Church declare pogroms against heretics or “witchcraft?”
    5. Was there equality under the law (if objective laws ever existed) during the Pope’s reign?
    6. Was there separation of church and state? Since the answer is obviously “NONE”, what was the impact of the non-existence of “separation” on the lives of private individuals?
    3. On your Galileo rhetoric: Does that mean that the Church was wrong… or let say, evil? Does that mean that the Church was anti-reason, anti-reason, anti-rights, and anti-freedom?
    And why do you think the influence and power of the Church gradually declined? What was the main FACTOR of this decline? Was it because the Church was willing to give up its absolute political and religious power? Or was it because of some EXTERNAL factor? I hope you get my drift here.
    4. On your “altruism”: pure rhetoric. Besides, I don’t agree with Darwinism’s moral and epistemological approach.
    You said: “Researchers on alleged altruist behaviours among animals have been ideologically opposed to the sociological social Darwinist concept of the “survival of the fittest”, under the name of “survival of the nicest”.”
    “Altruist behavior among animals”? Just like the food chain? I think the food chain and the survival of the fittest explain how “selfish” animals are.
    Any source? Does that echo Richard Dawkins’ “selfish gene”?
    5. You said: “Capitalism, Individualism, Radicalism, Pacifism, Egalitarianism or any other -ism is optimistically ideal for people and state but not one is perfect.”
    So what’s the perfect “ism” for you? Collectivism? The Pope’s Infallible “ism”? Catholicism? Theocracy by the Catholic Church or any religion? Don’t be like Karl Marx who offered no explanation of how his communism works but attacked Adam Smith’s capitalism instead. By the way, I don’t agree with much of Smith’s theory.
    I observed your failure to distinguish between different concepts here. That’s the effect of mysticism, of believing in an unknowable entity they call… Flying Spaghetti Monster?. It’s like skepticism. It says: “nobody can be certain of anything but… GOD, maybe?”
    Kindly tell me what’s Aristotle’s “ideal state”? Did I not discuss it here?
    You have to deal with the following issues then?
    1. What’s your understanding of Aristotle’s individualism?
    2. Why did he put much emphasis on the individual, not the state or polis?
    3. Why did Aristotle put so much value on Eudaimonia?
    4. Why did he champion rational egoism or self-interest instead of altruism or self-sacrifice? What’s your understanding of Aristotelian “rational egoism”? Does it mean we should disregard the rights of others? Is that your interpretation of his ethics, if ever you understood it?
    5. Why do you think Aristotle’s “ideal state” is no better than Plato’s Utopia? Can you give the fundamental differences between the two philosophers’ political concepts/theories?
    6. So what works now? Catholicism? Theocracy? A rule by the Pope or by any God’s representative? A rule by a religious leader?
    7. What do you suggest since I observed your utter nihilism and mysticism?

  8. November 6, 2010 3:38

    Freethinker2008’s “historical facts”: Encyclopedia Britannica

    Medieval history: Only exist in his mind.

    Argument: Pure stupid claims, elusion and circumvention.

    Logic: NONE

  9. xyxy permalink
    November 6, 2010 3:38

    Pastafarian!

    • November 6, 2010 3:38

      Pastafarian indeed! lol!

      • xyxy permalink
        November 6, 2010 3:38

        Are you ‘freethought’ from the FF forum?

      • November 6, 2010 3:38

        A visiting fellow.😉

  10. November 6, 2010 3:38

    @ Freethinker2008:

    That was the funniest and stupidest thing I’ve ever seen!

    “On Altruism, I already provided you some excerpts on scientific studies made by neuroscientists and yet you disregard them. So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now? On “altruist behavior among animals”, try caring for a pet sometime. It might surprise you.”

    Froivinver clearly defines altruism. It means selfless concern for the welfare of others. That was Auguste Compe’s definition, from the French word “alter” or others. Those cientific studies made by neuroscientists which you mentioned proves NOTHING. Besides, you didn’t provide any source at all. If you call that scientific, then what about Dawkins’ “selfish gene” which is diametrically oppose to what you’re saying. The proper question is: It is OK or moral to sacrifice your life to others. Is it OK or moral to put the interest of others above our own. We’re not “animals”! We’re rational animals who are capable for thought and concept. Animals are perceptual beings. Humans are conceptual beings.

    You said: “So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now?”

    That’s non sequitor fallacy. Are you out of your mind? If that’s how you think, I’m not surprised you think and reason like a lowlife animal, seriously.

    Here’s another invalid claim and logic:

    “The Church might not have been that open-minded in finding truth basing from science at some point in history but no one can entirely conclude that the Church has resisted all scientific knowledge all throughout history. That is precisely my point. No more. No less. But if you think otherwise, that will be completely illogical. You are just attacking the Catholic Church or religion for the “wrong reasons”. Isn’t that what you PREACH?”

    Are you saying the Church was open-minded during those eras? Are you out of your mind? If the Church really sponsored or supported science, why did it execute or kill scientists, thinkers, etc? You want me to enumerate them? My golly that’s GENERAL KNOWLEDGE! I share the opinion of Froivinber, does that mean I’m attaching the Church for “wrong reasons”? So what’s the reason reasons then? I believe in the freedom of religion, but attacking the Church is OK so long as I don’t advocate the gagging of the Catholic priests who want to speak their minds. Are you out of your damn mind again?

    Here’s another one:

    “So after endowing you with all those factual details, you just regard them as “crass history”? I believe the correct term is “historical facts” which are gathered from authoritative sources. And the process I do is a called “fact-checking” to eliminate any accidental or deliberate error, inaccuracy or journalistic fraud from reportage that may somehow be committed by the author. In this case, I already “fact-checked” some of your articles. And I regret to inform you that I am quite displeased from your indolent retorts considering you seem to be knowledgeable. Well, façade can be deceiving sometimes.”

    – “Historical facts”? Where the hell are they? They only exist in your empty mind.

    – Where’s the result of your fact-checking? It seems you’re just fond of spouting words without backing them with facts and proof. I’d be interested to see those fact-checked items you mentioned.

    Here’s another one:

    “So if you think those historical details about Galileo’s affair, scientific studies about altruism, the period of Dark Ages, et al, are not “factual”, then try to disprove them by providing FACTS; and NOT by presenting a multitude of sweeping statements and immaterial questions; and certainly NOT by exclaiming more speculation based from your pre-conceived anti-religion & anti-history opinions. So try to think about it while I enjoy my weekend.”

    – But you haven’t provided a single factual item but pure invalid claims and illogical rhetoric! lol!

    Conclusion: YOU’RE DAMN CRAZY MAN!

  11. November 6, 2010 3:38

    ERRATUM:

    “I share the opinion of Froivinber, does that mean I’m attaching the Church for “wrong reasons”? So what’s the reason reasons then? I believe in the freedom of religion, but attacking the Church is OK so long as I don’t advocate the gagging of the Catholic priests who want to speak their minds. Are you out of your damn mind again?”

    SHOULD HAVE BEEN:

    I share the opinion of Froivinber, does that mean I’m ATTACKING the Church for “wrong reasons”? So what are the GOOD reasons then? I believe in the freedom of religion, but attacking the Church is OK so long as I don’t advocate the gagging of the Catholic priests who would like to speak their minds. Are you out of your damn mind again?

  12. November 6, 2010 3:38

    @ Freethinker2008,

    I have to congratulate you for a job well done. Your arguments successfully carry buckets and buckets of fallacies and illogical rhetoric.

    The most visible fallacy of them all is “red herring argument”, as you tried to distract your opponent or the blogger from the issue in question through the introduction of some irrelevant issues.

    Another one is Argumentum ad Ignorantiam as your illogical defense of the Catholic Church and your attempt to argue that the Holy Inquisition and the butchery conducted by the Church did not exist is based on lack of evidence or even ignorant, if not utter dishonesty.

    Other ones are Argumentum ad Logicam, non sequitor fallacy, etc.

  13. November 7, 2010 3:38

    So after 48 hours, what do I get from your retort? NOTHING.

    You totally disregarded my “historical facts” and labeled them as “crass history” without even FACT-CHECKING. Afterwards, you (and your “reinforcement” people here) called me names as “troll“, “freefarter” & “pastafarian“ without giving me the BENEFIT of the doubt. And then you just expect me to accept your NON-FACTUAL statements and respond to your SOPHOMORIC questions against my free-will? Is this how you handle your anger-management blog? Or am I under “Inquisition” now? LOL

    Here’s my unsolicited advice:

    1. Refrain from arguing by special case to general rule to avoid the Converse Fallacy of Accident a.k.a. Hasty Generalization.
    2. Stop asking too many loaded questions to avoid the Fallacy called Plurium Interrogationum.
    2. Just give me FACTS. No sweeping statements. No trick questions.
    3. And tell your “prep squad” to keep it down. Their “argumentum ad ignorantiam” is getting TOO LOUD.

    So what’s next? Will you argue by “reason” and “facts”? Or will you just argue by “name-calling“?

    Your choice.🙂

    • November 7, 2010 3:38

      I’d like to see your fact-checked items. You should first answer the questions I made above.

      If that’s how you insanely evaluate the role of the Catholic Church in the past 2000 years, then you have to DENY that:

      1. The Holy Inquisition is not part of mankind’s history.

      2. there were pogroms against thinkers and scientists.

      3. there was Catholic theocracy.

      4. there was infallibility of the Pope.

      5. the Catholic Church connived with the monarchies in Europe.

      6. the Catholic church did wield absolute political power.

      … And you have to cheat historical reality by saying that:

      1. there was a separation of church and state during those eras.

      2. civil liberties and individual rights were duly protected.

      3. scientists and thinkers were allowed to pursue their profession and quest for knowledge.

      4. objective and rational rule of law was implemented and duly recognized.

      I have to tell you these things I think you’re either STUPID or DISHONEST.

      Besides you have not presented a coherent, point-by-point argument against my blog. When you said that with my statements against the Catholic Church “I don’t practice what I preach”, that shows you’re either stupid or dishonest (for you might have some agenda here). I defend the right of the Catholic priests to express their opinions and views, political or social, but that doesn’t mean that I have to waive my right to criticize the Church. Simple logic, kid.

      I’d like to point out what you stated here: “On Altruism, I already provided you some excerpts on scientific studies made by neuroscientists and yet you disregard them. So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now? On “altruist behavior among animals”, try caring for a pet sometime. It might surprise you.”

      That’s funny! Is that how you think? So crude and stupid. Where’s the source of that study? By the way, is that against Richard Dawkins’ “SELFISH GENE”? LINK: http://www.rubinghscience.org/memetics/dawkinsmemes.html

      We’re not low-life animals. We’re human beings, kid. We’re capable of thought. We have the capability to reason. Questioning the methodology of some crude scientists doesn’t mean I’m against the propagation of science. Besides, these so-called scientists (link?) are not infallible like your Catholic Pope. That’s exactly the rhetoric of some Global Warming fanatics like Al Gore. The scientists who’d like to open a debate on Global Warming were accused of being “anti-science” or anti-earth.

      Now get back to your free-farter camp, gather your friends there and then plan your next step. Don’t expose your idiocy here.

      • MC Ramirez permalink
        November 7, 2010 3:38

        That pastafarian is suffering from mental disorder. “Reinforcement” my ass!

        I think I need to REPOST my reply above:

        That was the funniest and stupidest thing I’ve ever seen!

        “On Altruism, I already provided you some excerpts on scientific studies made by neuroscientists and yet you disregard them. So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now? On “altruist behavior among animals”, try caring for a pet sometime. It might surprise you.”

        Froivinver clearly defines altruism. It means selfless concern for the welfare of others. That was Auguste Compe’s definition, from the French word “alter” or others. Those cientific studies made by neuroscientists which you mentioned proves NOTHING. Besides, you didn’t provide any source at all. If you call that scientific, then what about Dawkins’ “selfish gene” which is diametrically oppose to what you’re saying. The proper question is: It is OK or moral to sacrifice your life to others. Is it OK or moral to put the interest of others above our own. We’re not “animals”! We’re rational animals who are capable for thought and concept. Animals are perceptual beings. Humans are conceptual beings.

        You said: “So who “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” now?”

        That’s non sequitor fallacy. Are you out of your mind? If that’s how you think, I’m not surprised you think and reason like a lowlife animal, seriously.

        Here’s another invalid claim and logic:

        “The Church might not have been that open-minded in finding truth basing from science at some point in history but no one can entirely conclude that the Church has resisted all scientific knowledge all throughout history. That is precisely my point. No more. No less. But if you think otherwise, that will be completely illogical. You are just attacking the Catholic Church or religion for the “wrong reasons”. Isn’t that what you PREACH?”

        Are you saying the Church was open-minded during those eras? Are you out of your mind? If the Church really sponsored or supported science, why did it execute or kill scientists, thinkers, etc? You want me to enumerate them? My golly that’s GENERAL KNOWLEDGE! I share the opinion of Froivinber, does that mean I’m attaching the Church for “wrong reasons”? So what’s the reason reasons then? I believe in the freedom of religion, but attacking the Church is OK so long as I don’t advocate the gagging of the Catholic priests who want to speak their minds. Are you out of your damn mind again?

        Here’s another one:

        “So after endowing you with all those factual details, you just regard them as “crass history”? I believe the correct term is “historical facts” which are gathered from authoritative sources. And the process I do is a called “fact-checking” to eliminate any accidental or deliberate error, inaccuracy or journalistic fraud from reportage that may somehow be committed by the author. In this case, I already “fact-checked” some of your articles. And I regret to inform you that I am quite displeased from your indolent retorts considering you seem to be knowledgeable. Well, façade can be deceiving sometimes.”

        – “Historical facts”? Where the hell are they? They only exist in your empty mind.

        – Where’s the result of your fact-checking? It seems you’re just fond of spouting words without backing them with facts and proof. I’d be interested to see those fact-checked items you mentioned.

        Here’s another one:

        “So if you think those historical details about Galileo’s affair, scientific studies about altruism, the period of Dark Ages, et al, are not “factual”, then try to disprove them by providing FACTS; and NOT by presenting a multitude of sweeping statements and immaterial questions; and certainly NOT by exclaiming more speculation based from your pre-conceived anti-religion & anti-history opinions. So try to think about it while I enjoy my weekend.”

        – But you haven’t provided a single factual item but pure invalid claims and illogical rhetoric! lol!

        Conclusion: YOU’RE DAMN CRAZY MAN!

  14. freethinker2008 permalink
    November 8, 2010 3:38

    Since you just REHASH your OLD POSTS, called on your “reinforcement” or “prep squad” for help, and continued your juvenile tactic called “name-calling”, I would rather be civil and be amused by your “appendectomy”. LOL

    And since your comprehension is compromised by your ANTI-RELIGION SENTIMENTS & IGNORANCE ON HISTORY AND SCIENCE, let me rephrase my points for your further understanding.

    Your assumptions are summarized into 2 highly speculative and baseless CLAIMS:

    1. Catholic Church “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason” all throughout history.
    2. Catholic Church “reached the pinnacle of its religious reign” during the Dark Ages.

    My Analysis:
    1. Plutarch wrote that Caesar burned the Library of Alexandria. Paulus Orosius and Mostafa El-Abbadi NEVER CONFIRMED that it was categorically destroyed by Christians or Muslims. So it’s NOT CORRECT to assume that Catholic Church or any religion “strongly opposed the propagation of science and reason”. There’s simply NO VALID PROOF. Clearly, this claim is ARGUMENTUM AD IGNORANTIAM.

    2. Galileo’s Trial was a “special case”. The Catholic Church admitted its “mistake”, apologized, & now has recognized Galileo’s scientific theory. So it cannot support the first claim since it’s clearly an “exception”. You are obliged to show more proof of CONTINUOUS EVENTS of the Church’s opposition to science & reason since the birth of Catholicism until the present time. Otherwise, your first claim FAILS. Clearly, this claim is Converse Fallacy of Accident or HASTY GENERALIZATION.

    3. Encyclopedia Britannica clearly stated that the Dark Ages occurred within 476 A.D.-800 A.D. or generally between 500 A.D.- 1000 A.D. During this era, “there was no Roman (or Holy Roman) emperor in the West” & “was marked by frequent warfare and a virtual disappearance of urban life”. Moreover, “little was then known about the period” and it’s known as the “period of intellectual darkness and barbarity.” So, there was NO RECORD of Catholic Church had ever “reached the pinnacle of its religious reign” during the Dark Ages. Again, this claim is ARGUMENTUM AD IGNORANTIAM.

    My Authoritative Sources:
    1. Plutarch – a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist known primarily for his Parallel Lives and Moralia.
    2. Pollard, Justin, and Reid, Howard. 2006. The Rise and Fall of Alexandria, Birthplace of the Modern World.
    3. Paulus Orosius – Christian historian, theologian and student of Augustine of Hippo from Gallaecia; wrote the “Historiarum Adversum Paganos Libri VII” (Seven Books of History Against the Pagans)
    4. . Mostafa El-Abbadi – Professor Emeritus of Greco-Roman Studies at the University of Alexandria; wrote the “Life and Fate of the Ancient Library of Alexandria”
    5. Encyclopedia Britannica

    So far those statements are still CLAIMS. No historical basis. Just sweeping statements and ignorant assumptions.

    So AGAIN, where are your HISTORICAL FACTS to support your CLAIMS?
    I’m still waiting.🙂

    • November 8, 2010 3:38

      Check my reply to your stupidity here… https://fvdb.wordpress.com/2010/11/08/rcc/

      Any defense of Maccall? It seems that you just mentioned him after doing the google thing without even reading his crappy book.

      Any defense of collectivism?

      Would you deny that the Holy Inquisition did exist?

      Any proof that the RCC supported science and reason?

      NOW here are my predictions:

      You going to cherry-pick and point out irrelevant issues again.

      Your going to evade my questions like you always did, which shows you can never argue properly.

      You will resort to context-dropping.

      You will mention “names” again without including citations.

      You will make claims which I did not state in my original post.

      Get back to your drawing board and try to troll better.

  15. November 17, 2010 3:38

    I cannot express how much I admire this blog post… how much I admire your work. Thank you so much for opening my mind to your political philosophy, which is capitalism. I know I have to learn a lot and read a lot. But at least, as what Aristotle said, we have this purpose or motive-power to pursue our personal goals. Thanks!

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