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Belief meme - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Belief meme
Snagged from gehayi.

Do you believe
In God? Definitely, and I think He's got quite a Personality, too. I don't think He's totally infallible, and I'm more than willing to argue with Him if the situation calls for it, as did Abraham before me, or wrestle with Him like Jacob. I think He appreciates this about human beings--why else would He give us our big brains?

In ghosts? Too much anecdotal evidence to disdain the possibility. Some phenomenon exists which we refer to as ghosts--I won't pretend to know what they are, though. Serious research needs to be done.

In aliens? I think there's definitely life, and probably intelligent life (though I think the latter is a lot less common than alien enthusiasts would have us think).

In Bigfoot? To quote gehayi, "The guy who faked that died last year." On the other hand, I think there probably are some weird species of critters out there which haven't been carefully observed and may well be the root of various creature myths.

In fairies? Not even as a small child.

In ESP? I think everyone has at least a low level of ESP, and it's not very impressive. It's just that weird prickly feeling at the base of the neck when you walk by a dark alley, or the butterflies in the stomach that occur for no discernable reason. My motto in life is "trust the butterflies." On the other hand, I think this is a very mundane part of life, nothing to write home about.

In superstition? I find them interesting, but I think they only work when they psych a person into behaving a particular way, eg, "I'm wearing my lucky socks, therefore I feel good and confident, and therefore I will do well... must be the socks."

In equal rights for gays? In a secular sense, yes. In a religious sense? I don't know. I guess I figure that there are a lot of religions out there to choose from, and if I disagree with a basic tenet of behavior, I can always choose a different religion or a different branch of the one I'm in.

In equal rights for women? See above. I believe in the right of that Georgia golf course to not allow women to be members. And I believe in my absolute right to pay my greens fees to someone else until they change that policy. However, if it comes from the government or any government-associated arena, then there better not be a whiff of that. My basic belief about the great debates about masculine and feminine realms is that people can believe any silly damn thing they want about women, as long as they stay out of my way.

In psychics? I believe there are real ones, but they don't hang out their shingles. On the other hand, I think it's fun to have my palm read or my Tarot cards done.

In appearance? Basic, inherited appearance? No. Fashion? Too malleable to mean much. Chosen body language and the way people choose to present themselves? That counts for something, since it's a freely made decision.

In auras? We do all have a kind of energy and can sense when something is near our skin without actually touching, so I don't see why there couldn't be people who can see this. But changing colors like a mood ring and getting cleansed? No.

In true love? Yes. I have no evidence of it, but I absolutely believe it.

In happy endings? I think happy endings are more common and more realistic than bad ones.

In abortions? I'll just quote gehayi again: "I'm not crazy about abortions but I would prefer that a medical procedure be legal and be performed by qualified and skilled physicians." I'd also add that I think it's a religious matter and therefore not under the proper guidance of the government.

In Santa? No. And Jewish now, so not likely to instill the belief in any children I may have.

In soulmates? Yes. See "true love."

In magic? Agnostic.

In evolution? Definitely. I think it's the mechanism G-d uses to create.

In cloning? I can see a lot of medical potential in tissues and organs, but I don't see much point in cloning whole organisms.

In fraggles? Um....

In werewolves? No. Though I believe there've been people who believed themselves to be werewolves.

In vampires? Weirdly, and for no reason I can articulate, I'm an agnostic on vampires rather than an outright disbeliever. I won't even try to explain, because I can't. It makes no logical sense to believe even a little bit.

In miracles? Some of them. Some are explained scientifically.

In existing thylacines? Not a clue.

In Nessie? See Bigfoot.

In existing dinosaurs? Weird question. Depends on how you define "dinosaur." The actual great lizards? No.

In interracial marriages? I can't even imagine why this would ever be an ethical issue. Duh. Human is human is human.

In adoptions? I would adopt, but I don't think I'd put a child up for adoption. That's just drilled into my brain.

In saving the rainforests? Yes. Because they are good in and of themselves and need no hyped up reason for protection.

In saving dying species? When it's possible.

In the human race? I'm actually very positive about the human race.

In recycling? Recycling appeals to my Yankee frugality, though I'm more likely to think of it in terms of turning my Coke bottles into hanging planters than sending them to a plant. I'm not sure the plant does all that much environmentally.

In blue tigers? Erm... maybe if a white tiger got a weird kind of fur mold?

In tattoos? Not into them, and I always think when I see someone with one, "What will the nurses aides say when they chat at the retirement home?" But I don't have anything against people who like them. I enjoyed a temporary henna tattoo.

In plastic surgery? Not a fan.

In love in general? I believe in it, and think it's an incredibly powerful force in human affairs. Not always in a warm and fuzzy positive way, either.

In animal rights? I don't think animals have the same rights as humans, but they definitely have the right to be treated with affection when they're alive, and to not be tortured. I think medical research is all right at a late stage in testing, but cosmetic research is unconscionable.

In the death penalty? I'm conflicted. It's a whole essay. And rendered null and void by the AIDS levels in prisons--that's practically a death sentence anyway.

PS: Looked up "thylacine"--a Tasmanian wolf, or zebra wolf, believed to be extinct. Actually a marsupial, carnivorous. You know what--I'll give that brain space until I learn more. Provisional belief.

(finished now)
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(Deleted comment)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: February 3rd, 2004 03:52 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Some Points...

Do you believe that people who thing that Augusta *should* let women in have a right to make sure everyone in the country *knows* that they don't, and to try to make sure no one forgets it? I.e., letting market forces influenced by bad press pressure the club?

Pretty much. I have faith that their interest in sponsors will eventually break down the old interest--they don't actually seem that married to the idea. They just weren't going to stop simply because people were yelling at them. My general idea with businesses is that if I don't like their practices, I won't patronize them.

Not sure what you mean about "in a religious sense."

Pretty much what you said--I don't think we should be coming up with a bracha for shrimp. That doesn't mean there's anything wrong with eating shrimp if you're non-Jewish (or even Reform, since they've jettisoned kashrut), or that there should be any laws in the civil realm against shellfish. I just don't think that, just because there's nothing inherently wrong with shrimp, Orthodox Jews should be forced to eat them. I don't think Orthodox women should be forced to uncover their hair, either, even though I would refuse to cover my own. By the same token, I don't think the Catholic Church should be pushed to allow priests and nuns to marry (unless they come to the conclusion on their own), nor should atheists be forced to kneel for public prayer.
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