Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

MBlume comments on Things You Can't Countersignal - Less Wrong

51 Post author: Alicorn 19 February 2010 12:18AM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (122)

You are viewing a single comment's thread.

Comment author: MBlume 19 February 2010 12:41:53AM *  15 points [-]

might start chanting or something any moment

I don't necessarily see any reason we shouldn't start the day off with some pleasant chanting...

Comment author: Corey_Newsome 19 February 2010 04:15:36AM 8 points [-]

We should set up a program that blasts 'One Winged Angel' through the speakers of every online computer in the house, every morning.

Comment author: Alicorn 19 February 2010 12:51:59AM *  6 points [-]

Well, okay, chanting, but let's leave the robes in the closet - so unflattering! And it's just such a pain to remember to get peroxide on the rabbit blood stains in time for them to come out clean.

Comment author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 19 February 2010 01:51:41AM 8 points [-]

She is here.

Who is absent?

Comment author: Alicorn 19 February 2010 01:54:17AM 1 point [-]

Huh?

Comment author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 19 February 2010 02:56:26AM 4 points [-]
Comment author: sketerpot 19 February 2010 08:50:47AM 11 points [-]

I could have sworn you were going to make a reference to Ezra Dahlquist and friends, who are mentioned in a nearly identical ritual in Space Cadet. I miss books where one could go to Venus in a nuclear-thermal rocket and have a conversation with the swamp-dwelling natives.

Problem #21 with literary allusions: hash bucket collisions.

Comment author: xamdam 19 February 2010 05:10:20PM 0 points [-]

Hey, a religious cult can be a great vehicle for rationality! (Stranger in Strange Land)

Comment author: kragensitaker 24 February 2010 07:13:13AM 15 points [-]

Stranger in a Strange Land is fiction. Obviously it's possible to write about the idea of a religious cult that is a great vehicle for rationality, but it's equally possible to write about faster-than-light travel. Do you know of any real-life examples?

My experience suggests that even religious organizations that purport to venerate rationality (Objectivists, the Roman Catholic Church, possibly the Pythagoreans) are less effective at promoting rationality than other kinds of groups. Objectivists ended up being downright insane.

Comment author: xamdam 24 February 2010 06:59:01PM 2 points [-]

I said what I did mostly for the entertainment value, so essentially I am not going to defend it. I will say that some religions are more rational than others, open to science and "believe" that their faith is logical. Rational (Maimonidean) Judaism has a lot of these ideas, as did Islam as some points. Christianity had their share of rational people, but if you start with nonsense like trinity you cannot get too far IMO.

Comment author: DanArmak 24 February 2010 08:20:54AM *  1 point [-]

Since when do RC Catholics venerate rationality?

ETA: I have tried and failed to find, through Google, any mention of a special connection between RC belief and rationality. Possibly they accept rationality, but that they venerate it is a much stronger claim. Could someone please give a ref and not just downvote?

Comment author: kragensitaker 25 February 2010 04:07:05AM 13 points [-]

Since St. Augustine. One of the core tenets of their faith is that the existence of God can be proven through the use of reason alone, and throughout the centuries they have spent almost as much time as the rabbis arguing about dogma, although with a distinctly different attitude about the need to come to a conclusion.

Comment author: orthonormal 27 February 2010 03:29:41AM 6 points [-]

Indeed. Were it not for the Catholic Church's assertion that the existence of God can be known through reason, I might have stopped short of pursuing my doubts all the way to atheism...

Comment author: Unknowns 24 February 2010 09:39:36AM *  0 points [-]

You might read G.K. Chesterton's story, "The Blue Cross." (http://www.literaturepage.com/read/chesterton-innocence-of-father-brown-1.html)

Or for just one relevant passage from the story, see http://www.literaturepage.com/read/chesterton-innocence-of-father-brown-17.html.

This sort of attitude is fairly common in the Catholic Church and seems a lot like veneration, although that could depend on your definition.

Comment author: DanArmak 24 February 2010 12:58:59PM -1 points [-]

As far as I could make out from just that chapter, that story is about a time traveler observing a robber masquerading as priest and giving an ironic quotation. I'd like some more solid and official evidence tying Catholic dogma to rationality.

Comment author: Unknowns 24 February 2010 07:14:57PM 0 points [-]

As far as I can make out, you didn't understand the story.

Anyway this would be more official: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/encyclicals/documents/hf_jp-ii_enc_15101998_fides-et-ratio_en.html

Of course it's too long to read, and anyway as I said it's a question of interpretation.

Comment author: MBlume 17 March 2011 02:31:32AM *  0 points [-]

At Pantheacon, I encountered a fellow who had started a church modeled after those in SiSL