The internet and the companies on it are a good thing. I can know whatever I want within seconds. The world wide web is a force for great good. But, much like our social circles we tend to only look at things that confirm our own beliefs and reinforce everything we already think. It’s like newspapers and television channels. If you are liberal in your thoughts it’s reasonable to assume you would read The Guardian or Independent. If you are right wing then you might read The Times or Telegraph. If you are just plain crazy then you might read the Daily Fucking Mail.

Now, most of my friends share the same thoughts about society as I do. Some don’t and it’s always great fun to have conversations and discussions and arguments with them. It would be impossible in life to only spend your time with people who agree with you. You need to learn to accept what people think, even if they are clearly wrong.

I was almost going to turn this communication into a discussion about logical fallacies. You can Google that phrase and see what you find. It’s important to understand logical fallacies and how to spot them. I’m quite good at spotting some but I still don’t really understand the Straw Man argument and I keep reading about it and listening to people explain it.

So, this communication is about listening to opposing views. I have done this on twitter and follow some people who I would really rather not. I try to read what they say and do my best to understand them. I force myself to try and understand from their point of view. It’s a bit like reading the Daily Fucking Mail which I do occasionally to see what poisonous shit they are saying now.

So, one of the first people I started to follow to listen and see what they say was Deepak Chopra. He is often ridiculed on podcasts that I listen to. Here are a few of his tweets so you can see what sort of thing this knobhead says.

Now, I haven’t even read the article. It’s enough to annoy me that he claims consciousness isn’t in the body. Where the fuck else is it going to be?

What does this mean? They are words, but none that make sense.

When I see stuff like this and people retweeting this it pisses me off loads. How can people like this bullshit. I don’t understand. One of my issues is that I find it hard to see why people believe this bullshit. To me it is quite obvious how and why things work. We have explanations for all this stuff. We are finding out more and more as time goes on. We understand. We don’t need this waffle to help us cope with this one life we have. Now, I start to understand why people I listen to make fun of this man. Perhaps I’m jealous? Perhaps I think those who find peace in this shit must have contentment and happiness that I do not. this is a force for making people happy and calm. But then, it’s not really is it? People with faith and belief still hurt and have shit happen to them. They are still sad when people close to them die, they aren’t joyous because the soul lives on. Believers still feel pain but also have a veneer of lies to clutch on to, to comfort them.

I often think of this:

So, onto another tweeter I follow. Perhaps that should be twit. I am not sure. I try to be polite but sometimes I just give up and think these people are fucking arseholes. Ken Ham has spent millions creating an Ark in Kentucky. Let’s see what he has to say:

Sure, the biblical worldview values all human life, unless you are gay, transgender, divorce, have an abortion, don’t believe, are foreign, wear mixed fabrics, have sex before marriage, have an affair and so on. Fuck You Ken for saying this. I also don’t understand his first sentence. What the actual fuck? Evolution leads to euthanasia? How? This man just doesn’t understand evolution, which is rather sad. This man believes the bible is the literal truth. My problem with this is how can someone clearly intelligent [he has raised funds for his Ark and runs several organisations] believe that stuff?

Sure, God’s word is the best evidence. But we don’t have god’s word. We have words written by men, in a book, almost two thousand years ago. This book says it is true, therefore it is true. Awesome logic.

An ark! Noah’s ark. In Kentucky. Purporting to be the truth. Nothing to mock there.

I have to admit, I don’t understand “sin”. It seems to be breaking the rules from a book. It’s worse than breaking the law, I think. I’m not sure. Perhaps “sin” is what old celibate men decide it is. That sounds about right.

The number of times I have read this and tried to understand what it means! Arrrrrgh.

I’ll leave it there. Time to move on to another person I follow on twitter. Pastor Alex Rivas describes himself as “Son of God. Researcher. Leader. Prophet. A human being.” I don’t see much human being in the things he says:

I’m pretty sure bible says nothing about gay marriage, abortion or marijuana. If you can find the verse then please let me know. Obviously if you use the bible to support your ideas then you should surely follow all it’s principles. Leviticus 19:19 says:

You shall keep my statutes. You shall not let your cattle breed with a different kind. You shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed, nor shall you wear a garment of cloth made of two kinds of material.

Here’s another:

There’s NO evidence from the time of Jesus that he existed. NONE. Let alone that he was resurrected. NOT one thing. NADA. ZILCH. NOTHING. All we have are mistranslations of stories written about forty years after whatever happened. Yet we are to believe that these writings exactly reproduce the things that Yeshua said. I don’t understand how people who are so invested in the words of the bible haven’t taken the time and opportunity to look into the history of the bible. To understand from where the stories come. To read up about how this book they hold so dear came to be written.

Actually I do understand why these people haven’t looked into the history of their beloved book. It’s because they know it will destroy their faith. It will bring their world view crumbling down. It’s therefore best to ignore that. We don’t want to feel that the time and resources invested have been wasted.

Dana Ullman MPH CCH:

Homoeopathic meds have plenty of molecules, just none of the “active” ingredient that they claim.

That’s good. Homoeopathy is nothing. Seriously, it’s nothing. Anyway, Dana Ullman has MPH and CCH after his name. What does that mean? Right, MPH is Master of Public Health [not a medical degree] and CCH may be a homoeopathic post graduate degree thing. I’m not sure. Do you know how I introduce bullshit medicine in the school where I work? I explain what homoeopathy [and I spell it correctly] and I give pupils an understanding of the claims Homoeopaths make about how it works. I use official homoeopathy websites to describe the rules of homoeopathy. I don’t even get halfway through the rules before the pupils see it for what it is: bollocks.

If I want to create an air of authority then perhaps I should end everything I write with Ian Parish PGCE BEng (Hons) ACGI. Perhaps the world would like that and find my writings more impressive. I could, legitimately, sign off Plt Off Parish RAFVR(T). But I don’t.

I still follow these people. I still read their shit. I try to understand the world view they come from but I will admit that I struggle. I still find it incredibly weird that intelligent people believe these kids of things.

So, instead of wasting time on what these crazy people think. Here’s what science did today:

You see? Do you see what fantastic stuff we can do when we put our energies and minds to it. Science is fantastic.

As an aside, I love the fact that the Space-X barges are named after ships from Iain M Banks books.