Dusty applauded an April post by an atheist blogger he's become, apparently, enamored with. The antetheos posted about being open minded. You can see it here
I don't want to lose my response to what I think might be a bit of under-thought on the part of the blogger, so I'm inserting it here for safe keeping:
"Beware of Dog"
Being rather new to this idea of "no theos", please forgive me if I ask questions that have been unquestionably accepted by rational thinkers, or well enough documented in this or other blogs. You, I think would agree that public opinion is among the least of the proofs. You've said as much in refusing, as we all should do, to accept opinion or another's word as complete, or whole evidence. So I thank you for the freedom to consider your opinion here as same weight as Billy Nascar, St. Augustine or a midlevel potato farmer. I'm happy to say, we all of us dead or alive, have produced moments of brilliance.
Am I right to draw from this post, that open mindedness is an important value to which I, as an atheist must cling? You have several themes running through, but it might me help to stick to only one, for "I am a bear of very little brain."
Tell me if I have the gist of your view right: An open mind is a desirable thing. A closed mind to be avoided. So far, so good. I'm strongly considering atheism already, open-mindedness is the only way to fly if we're to give and take, fully, in these short years incorpus.
Thank you again, for leading us by your example. I think I can trust you to give me the best atheism has to offer. So, by your post, a good atheist "should" agree that evidence must live up to several criteria, some pretty strict boundaries. Can you help me here? I was just about to join you, valuing open-mindedness as much as you do. But, these words seem a bit restrictive. Here they are again:
"convincing" "irrefutable" "logical" "consistent with the reality we know" "practical" "sensible" "possible" "rational"
I'm trying for as much common ground as I can get here. Let's imagine that a religious mystic describes his faith. You'll require "convincing, irrefutable logic". But when he starts, we atheists will have a problem with reality we all, including him, "know". His faith is "practical" to him and he would say "sensible" or why would he bet his lifestyle upon it. But if you're not convinced of his "proofs" because they don't meet your very specific "rationality", I'm afraid I might hear you declare "Impossible!!!"
So as one who is in total agreement with you on the importance of remaining open, my question is simply, "Is not this atheism, both narrow, and closed?" After all... your mission, if you'll allow, is wonderfully described in a single word. I wish I had a single word mission. That word: Atheist. "No Theism" as you say. Sounds a bit more rigid than you originally promoted above.
I greatly desire peer respect, in the end. After all, we both have our moments of brilliance. I fear we're starting off on the wrong foot. Could you clarify this one, what looks to me to be, blind spot? In this one post you've alienated those who can't meet your subjective, albeit narrow rules, and have devalued our beloved openness by your title which says "I'm closed to theism". If it were on a business card, I'd know your name and that you value closedness. Maybe we're expecting too much of an open mind. In that case let's search for some other common ground, something we can agree is valuable (even though To Value requires a faith in yet another thing we can't quite prove...)
Thanks in advance for your gentle response, I am but a potential disciple, with a deep lack of experience in such an obvious (as you put it) need for exclusively rational thinking.
All the best,