[FoRK] Poll: I would rather my daughter married a Muslim than an Atheist

Corinna Schultz <corinna.schultz at gmail.com> on Fri Jun 22 12:56:46 PDT 2007

>   There IS no purely rational way of living;  That's what I've been trying
>   to explain to you.
>
>   Rationality is to a purpose.  Rationalization ALWAYS happens towards
>   some purpose.
>
>   But what that purpose should be-- Nobody has an absolute answer towards.

This is why the existentialists are suicidal...

I more or less believe (at the moment) that purpose and meaning are
pretty arbitrary, constructed by the individual.

Example:

For a variety of reasons under and not under my control, I choose to
think that long walks in the woods are meaningful and contribute to my
sanity. It is therefore rational to schedule my week such that I have
the opportunity to walk in the woods, instead of, say, playing Magic
with my kids. *They* may think it's irrational, since I enjoy playing
Magic and have very little time during the week to be with them. But
they don't understand the underlying meaning and value to me.

My husband doesn't care for walking in the woods. For him to do what I
do would be irrational because it would contribute to his insanity
instead of sanity. So he plays computer games.  We could get into a
big argument about it and decide that the other person is being
irrational, and totally miss the underlying meaning that is being
acted upon.

Alternatively, say I arrange my schedule and so forth, but *say* and
*think* it's because I'm making my family happy when I do so. Then
it's irrational, because a good argument could be made that my family
would be much happier if I didn't disappear for hours like that. By
denying the underlying meaning, I have constructed an irrational
argument that anyone can all me on.

So I think, in a large measure, that much of what we see as irrational
is really that the person has not adequately examined or accounted for
their meaning and value. Many people are religious not because they
think it's *true*, but for aesthetic reasons. But they will deny that
vehemently. Even though the way they live provides ample evidence that
it is the case. I would say those people are being irrational.

-Corinna

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