Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by NecronLord » 2017-10-08 05:30pm

JLTucker wrote:
2017-10-08 09:27am
Blah blah blah. I never said I was morally superior. I also never mocked her. I’m simply tying to understand whether or not this type of behavior is acceptable. I don’t think it is.

It’s a shame you didn’t take the place of her daughter, you rancid cunt. How’s that for legitimate repellant behavior?

Edit: Your appeal to tradition with OMG MOST PEOPLE GRIEVE THIS WAY is hilarious.
But you are mocking her, you're reposting her pain in a forum you expect to have people find her contemptible or amusing.

And quite simply no, It's not an appeal to tradition - that would be saying 'this is the correct way to handle grief, most people do it' I am simply saying that I do not find my empathy limited to people I politically or socially/religiously agree with. There's plenty of space to intellectually disagree with religion, and indeed hate it in the appropriate way, without feeling a need to mock human suffering.
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Broomstick » 2017-10-08 11:38pm

It would certainly be wrong for someone one to impose their coping mechanism on you against your will or to your detriment.
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by loomer » 2017-10-11 09:13pm

Someone's mourning process is a personal matter. It may be dysfunctional at times, but so long as it isn't hurting anyone, no it isn't immoral, yes it is acceptable, what is wrong with you?
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-11 09:38pm

Broomstick wrote:
2017-10-08 11:38pm
It would certainly be wrong for someone one to impose their coping mechanism on you against your will or to your detriment.
While appealing to a comforting lie may feel better in the short term, it is definitely harmful in the long term. The question is, do you value someone's short-term comfort over their long-term well being?

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Broomstick » 2017-10-11 10:09pm

Some things are beneficial in the short term that are detrimental in the long run.

Losing a child to death is, mentally and emotionally, one of the worst things a human being can go through. It is not unknown for people to have complete mental breakdowns, cease functioning, engage in self-harm, or even suffer physical illnesses (such as a heart attack) due to the stress of the event. If a comforting lie can get them through the initial, most acute phases of grief that is arguably better than, say, drinking themselves unconscious on a nightly basis or engaging in similar self-destructive behavior.

I'm not saying it's an ideal situation, merely that for some people it's a means of coping. As long as the coping mechanism itself doesn't become harmful over time I'm OK with that.
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-11 10:27pm

Broomstick wrote:
2017-10-11 10:09pm
Some things are beneficial in the short term that are detrimental in the long run.

Losing a child to death is, mentally and emotionally, one of the worst things a human being can go through. It is not unknown for people to have complete mental breakdowns, cease functioning, engage in self-harm, or even suffer physical illnesses (such as a heart attack) due to the stress of the event. If a comforting lie can get them through the initial, most acute phases of grief that is arguably better than, say, drinking themselves unconscious on a nightly basis or engaging in similar self-destructive behavior.

I'm not saying it's an ideal situation, merely that for some people it's a means of coping. As long as the coping mechanism itself doesn't become harmful over time I'm OK with that.
You're proposing a false dichotomy "comforting lie or drunken stupor". Regardless, both would fall into the "short term comfort, long term harm category". Either way, the question isn't HOW people behave, but rather how people SHOULD behave. I realize that this isn't something that will change over night, but perhaps teaching people how to accept loss without becoming a quivering mass, would be a good idea...

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Simon_Jester » 2017-10-11 10:47pm

How strongly should we desire that humans behave in a way that, empirically, is very difficult for humans to behave without being badly harmed?

How hard does ideology compel us to want something that seems like a utilitarian net negative? Or to put it another way, how big a utilitarian negative do we accept for a greater good that we are ideologically convinced will happen?
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Broomstick » 2017-10-11 11:42pm

biostem wrote:
2017-10-11 10:27pm
You're proposing a false dichotomy "comforting lie or drunken stupor". Regardless, both would fall into the "short term comfort, long term harm category". Either way, the question isn't HOW people behave, but rather how people SHOULD behave. I realize that this isn't something that will change over night, but perhaps teaching people how to accept loss without becoming a quivering mass, would be a good idea...
So, please do tell me how many deathbeds you have attended. Please do share how many close relatives and friends you have lost.

A person becoming a "quivering mess" after the death of a child is actually pretty damn common. My atheist mother had an actual goddamned literal heart attack from the stress. My atheist father was a sobbing mess for a week and wouldn't have eaten if he hadn't had friends and family around to put food in front of him (of course, in addition to losing a child he also was in danger of losing his wife, too - and losing a spouse is yet another "fucks you up" kind of death). NOTHING fucks a person up quite like having a kid die, and it doesn't matter what age the kid is at the time.

You can't change people so they don't react emotionally to losing a child. You can not. I'm not even a parent and I don't need this explained to me, but maybe some of the parents on this forum can weigh in on the matter. Someone whose child dies is the opposite of rational. It is a state incompatible with logical thinking, rationality, or structured thought. It's like criticizing someone who has had a leg cut off because they were thrashing around screaming in pain instead of quietly and calmly applying a tourniquet then calling 911 for medical assistance. Once in a great while you'll find someone who seems to be able to pull that off but they're pretty damn rare. In fact, LACK of irrational behavior and being too calm in a someone suffering a loss like that raises a red flag because it's not normal.

Which is why I say that if a "comforting lie" is necessary to get a person through that initial mourning period it's a tolerable allowance. What's your alternative? Drugging them? Well, yes, use of tranquilizers is an option for devastating grief but that's another short-term solution that can be hazardous long term.

Frankly, we have no clue what sort of baggage and/or mental damage, trauma, or dysfunctions the woman in the OP might have. If her "comforting lie" enables her to get up in the morning, get a shower, get dressed, and get on with the rest of her life I'm not sure where the harm is here. Again, what's your alternative? Have her committed to a psych ward? Drug her? What?

How do you think people "should" behave after such a traumatic loss? And do you arrive at that via personal experience or is it just the way you would like the world to work as opposed to what reality might actually be?
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Now I did a job. I got nothing but trouble since I did it, not to mention more than a few unkind words as regard to my character so let me make this abundantly clear. I do the job. And then I get paid.- Malcolm Reynolds, Captain of Serenity, which sums up my feelings regarding the lawsuit discussed here.

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Formless » 2017-10-12 12:54am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-11 10:27pm
You're proposing a false dichotomy "comforting lie or drunken stupor". Regardless, both would fall into the "short term comfort, long term harm category". Either way, the question isn't HOW people behave, but rather how people SHOULD behave. I realize that this isn't something that will change over night, but perhaps teaching people how to accept loss without becoming a quivering mass, would be a good idea...
Biostem, you do know there are entire talk therapy regimes out there just for helping people deal with grief, right? There is a reason for that: to try and help prevent death from creating long term problems for people, and because having problems due to grief is so normal. Of course, psychologists don't work for free, but oddly enough ministers and priests don't charge a fee to council mourners in their faith. So it should come as no surprise that so many people take solace in religious customs to help deal with their grief.

And as for preparing people for loss ahead of time, there is a limit to how much you can prepare for. I mean, Buddhists don't spend so much of their lives meditating for nothing, pretty much the entire practice is about achieving the kind of non-attachment you seem to think everyone should strive for. That's a lot of your life set aside just to prepare for loss. And even they don't claim that it will fully prepare you for the immediate impact of sudden death! The problem is that death is such a rare emotional trigger, with such unpredictable consequences on the psyche, that you have very few chances to practice your grieving skills. As well it should be! Those few people who see lots of death are often crushed by it. But someone who has this happen once in their life will feel like shit for a few months and experience a sting whenever they remember their loved one, but will usually go on living a normal life soon enough. And by the way? Religion is normal for most people, and not so harmful we should tell people what to think and what to believe during times of crisis. Deal with it.
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by loomer » 2017-10-12 03:40am

Yeah, it seems to me that a religious method of handling loss is, in fact, a way of handling loss 'without turning into a quivering mess'. And given that those methods are usually 'this happened, it sucks, you're feeling a lot of pain and that's completely okay, here are some ways to regear your thinking about it so you can get up out of bed, see the sun, and try to keep moving' rather than 'okay, now take these antidepressants and pretend everything is fine' they're not exactly 'long term harm' either.

Shit, when my aunt died I took to angry prayer and it helped me get up each day in a way that I wasn't able to when my uncle died, and I'm a graduate of years of cognitive therapy to try and counter depression and pain. I literally turned into a quivering mess, collapsed wailing, the works. It was religious grieving that helped me get out of it, not that kept me there.

How should I have behaved? Should I have gone 'oh well' and flippantly carried on with my existence as though I wasn't in pain? Should I have never felt the pain at all? Should I have gone 'the universe is cold and unfeeling and my aunt is dead of something that couldn't be avoided, this is good'? Given those as my alternatives, I'm pretty sure I made the right decision with my angry prayers and death offerings as a road to accepting mortality and recognizing that things have to end.

There is an intellectual utility to recognizing that the universe is a mechanistic and unfeeling place, in that it allows us to interact honestly and truthfully with the material world around us and make decisions based on evidence and not faith. That utility does not mean that philosophical and religious approaches to emotion lose theirs, and when the streams don't cross, what's the harm exactly? Identify it, please. Tell us exactly where the harm lies if an otherwise rational person, capable of recognizing that there is no compelling evidence of G-d, chooses to mourn their dead in a way that they find comforting?
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Patroklos » 2017-10-12 04:11am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-11 10:27pm
You're proposing a false dichotomy "comforting lie or drunken stupor". Regardless, both would fall into the "short term comfort, long term harm category". Either way, the question isn't HOW people behave, but rather how people SHOULD behave. I realize that this isn't something that will change over night, but perhaps teaching people how to accept loss without becoming a quivering mass, would be a good idea...
What is this SHOULD you are talking about? How do you qualify it, who is empowered to make this decision and why, and how are you empirically measuring its effectiveness over other methods?

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-12 04:33am

So much is/ought confusion here. Let me explain; it IS the case that many people break down at a significant loss. I propose that we OUGHT not do that, as such breakdowns are neither productive, nor do they actually help in the mourning/recovery process. THAT IS ALL I'M SAYING! I am NOT saying that people who weep and carry on are bad, and I don't think they deserve ire. I've experienced my fair share of deathbeds, and the best thing you can do is to keep your composure and take in your last few moments with that loved one. Let them know you are there for them till the end, and when the time comes, make sure that their last wishes/rites are carried out. As for the "effectiveness" of my proposed behavior - let's see; On the one hand, we have crying and carrying on, and on the other we have keeping your composure. It's pretty obvious which is a healthier and more productive behavior. There seems to be a trend here of appealing to emotion, and while I fully admit that emotion is an integral part of being human, and can be very healthy, it is highly likely that bawling at a loved one's passing is probably NOT what they'd want you to do, and only serves to reinforce this notion that we should carry on whenever we face a loss.

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by loomer » 2017-10-12 04:48am

Can you provide evidence that expressing one's emotion in the face of grief is unhealthier than not doing so?
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-12 04:52am

loomer wrote:
2017-10-12 04:48am
Can you provide evidence that expressing one's emotion in the face of grief is unhealthier than not doing so?
I never said that expressing emotion is bad. I only ever advocated for maintaining your composure. Do you not understand that you can feel extremely loss, heartache, and sadness, without crying and carrying on?

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by loomer » 2017-10-12 04:55am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 04:52am
loomer wrote:
2017-10-12 04:48am
Can you provide evidence that expressing one's emotion in the face of grief is unhealthier than not doing so?
I never said that expressing emotion is bad. I only ever advocated for maintaining your composure. Do you not understand that you can feel extremely loss, heartache, and sadness, without crying and carrying on?
Can you or can you not provide evidence that it is healthier to take the course you advocate for than to cry?
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-12 05:04am

loomer wrote:
2017-10-12 04:55am
biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 04:52am
loomer wrote:
2017-10-12 04:48am
Can you provide evidence that expressing one's emotion in the face of grief is unhealthier than not doing so?
I never said that expressing emotion is bad. I only ever advocated for maintaining your composure. Do you not understand that you can feel extremely loss, heartache, and sadness, without crying and carrying on?
Can you or can you not provide evidence that it is healthier to take the course you advocate for than to cry?

You are missing the point completely - can you, or can you not, operate more effectively while crying and carrying on? Who has a higher level of function, a person who is bawling, or a person who remains composed? If you want to conduct an experiment, do something to induce heavy tearing in yourself, and let me know if you're more or less able to function.

The effects of crying, alone, are not very good: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/th ... cts-crying (This was just a very cursory search, so don't take it as gospel).

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Jub » 2017-10-12 05:15am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:04am
You are missing the point completely - can you, or can you not, operate more effectively while crying and carrying on? Who has a higher level of function, a person who is bawling, or a person who remains composed? If you want to conduct an experiment, do something to induce heavy tearing in yourself, and let me know if you're more or less able to function.

The effects of crying, alone, are not very good: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/th ... cts-crying
Would it not be better if you able to outrun Usain Bolt while simultaneously possessing the ability to beat Eliud Kipchoge in a marathon? It would be, but most people are lucky if they even sort of do one of those things at any level. It's like this with grief, some people can be that rock but they also tend to have a harder time letting go of that pain. Others feel it acutely and need any out they can get just to function, and that can help them be more open with their grief and recover faster. It's rare that people can ever do particularly well at being the rock or grieving deeply and moving on, let alone being able to do both.

The fact that you claim to have this combination of skills may actually show that you have serious issues connecting with people, have severely repressed emotional issues, or some other equally fucked up trauma. Any of these, or the fact that you're exaggerating how well you dealt with things online, are more likely than you being in such perfect control of your emotions in the face of tragedy.

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-12 05:22am

Jub wrote:
2017-10-12 05:15am
biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:04am
You are missing the point completely - can you, or can you not, operate more effectively while crying and carrying on? Who has a higher level of function, a person who is bawling, or a person who remains composed? If you want to conduct an experiment, do something to induce heavy tearing in yourself, and let me know if you're more or less able to function.

The effects of crying, alone, are not very good: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/th ... cts-crying
Would it not be better if you able to outrun Usain Bolt while simultaneously possessing the ability to beat Eliud Kipchoge in a marathon? It would be, but most people are lucky if they even sort of do one of those things at any level. It's like this with grief, some people can be that rock but they also tend to have a harder time letting go of that pain. Others feel it acutely and need any out they can get just to function, and that can help them be more open with their grief and recover faster. It's rare that people can ever do particularly well at being the rock or grieving deeply and moving on, let alone being able to do both.

The fact that you claim to have this combination of skills may actually show that you have serious issues connecting with people, have severely repressed emotional issues, or some other equally fucked up trauma. Any of these, or the fact that you're exaggerating how well you dealt with things online, are more likely than you being in such perfect control of your emotions in the face of tragedy.
Nice armchair psychoanalysis there, but you've missed the point yet again. I neither hold myself up as a perfect example, nor do I expect everyone to be one. Children are taught and encouraged to respond to different things as they grow up, in addition to emulating those they see around them. If they see someone break down and bawl at every skinned knee and boo-boo, then that's how they're going to act. If they see that those around them curse and carry on when they stub a toe, then that's what they're going to do. If, however, they see that, when someone skins a knee, they say ouch, pick themselves back up, go clean and bandage their wound, then that's what they're going to do. None of the latter implies a lack of empathy or connection with others. You just cannot distance yourself from what you think I'm saying, and what I'm ACTUALLY saying.

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by loomer » 2017-10-12 05:23am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:04am
loomer wrote:
2017-10-12 04:55am
biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 04:52am


I never said that expressing emotion is bad. I only ever advocated for maintaining your composure. Do you not understand that you can feel extremely loss, heartache, and sadness, without crying and carrying on?
Can you or can you not provide evidence that it is healthier to take the course you advocate for than to cry?

You are missing the point completely - can you, or can you not, operate more effectively while crying and carrying on? Who has a higher level of function, a person who is bawling, or a person who remains composed? If you want to conduct an experiment, do something to induce heavy tearing in yourself, and let me know if you're more or less able to function.

The effects of crying, alone, are not very good: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/th ... cts-crying
Certainly, I can't 'operate more effectively while crying'. But my life experience is that I rarely need to operate at full function when I am actively mourning. Do you often encounter situations where, immediately after being exposed to the death of a loved one or during appropriate mourning, you need to 'operate effectively'? I should hope not, at least outside of immediate hazards like a car wreck, a natural disaster, or a warzone.

Further, your link addresses only the immediate aspect, not the long term aspect of crying and open displays of grief - which is the perspective you were advocating for considering earlier, as I recall, especially with that whole 'Short term comfort, long term harm' metric you decided to invoke. Not only that, but your link does not discount the idea that crying can be beneficial, and states outright that research is mixed.

Here, let's have a contrary opinion. http://www.post-gazette.com/news/health ... 1510050002
Ms. Bylsma, who does research on children who are prone to depression, is also the lead author of a 2008 study that looked at the crying experiences of more than 5,000 men and women from around the world.

The key finding: Most people do feel better after they’ve had a good cry, but their sense of catharsis depends partly on where the crying occurs and whom they’re with.

People tend to feel better if they cry alone, or somewhat privately in front of one other person who can offer sympathy and support, the study says. If they weep in front of two or more people, for instance in the workplace or among strangers, they are less likely to get that intimate support and are more likely to be embarrassed.

People also are more likely to experience catharsis — from a Greek wording meaning to cleanse — if the situation they are crying about is resolved, whether it’s a fight with a spouse or frustration in the office.

Of course, the death of a loved one can’t be resolved, but the study also notes that people can get a sense of catharsis if the crying gives them new insights into their suffering. One of those revelations is that even if you can’t be with the people you lost, you can be comforted by your memories of them....

...Besides the psychological salve of crying, there are direct physical benefits, too, Pitt’s Ms. Bylsma says.

Before someone cries, blood pressure and heart rate climb, and the tears then help the body return to baseline levels, a process known as homeostasis....

Many people associate crying during grief with depression, Ms. Bylsma says, but in fact, deeply depressed people are less likely to cry.

In those who are extremely depressed or traumatized, she says, crying can actually be a sign of healing."
So again. You got any actual evidence that it is healthier - and yes, that does mean over the long term, not just 'oh no, short term immune drop' - to refrain from crying in favour of 'operating... efficiently'?
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Jub » 2017-10-12 05:30am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:22am
Nice armchair psychoanalysis there, but you've missed the point yet again. I neither hold myself up as a perfect example, nor do I expect everyone to be one. Children are taught and encouraged to respond to different things as they grow up, in addition to emulating those they see around them. If they see someone break down and bawl at every skinned knee and boo-boo, then that's how they're going to act. If they see that those around them curse and carry on when they stub a toe, then that's what they're going to do. If, however, they see that, when someone skins a knee, they say ouch, pick themselves back up, go clean and bandage their wound, then that's what they're going to do. None of the latter implies a lack of empathy or connection with others. You just cannot distance yourself from what you think I'm saying, and what I'm ACTUALLY saying.
I'm going to expect hard proof from multiple sources that these assertions are true. I think this is fair given the absolute if-then statements you're making. Relevant quotes will also be required as the board frowns upon dumping entire research papers on people.

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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-12 05:43am

Jub wrote:
2017-10-12 05:30am
biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:22am
Nice armchair psychoanalysis there, but you've missed the point yet again. I neither hold myself up as a perfect example, nor do I expect everyone to be one. Children are taught and encouraged to respond to different things as they grow up, in addition to emulating those they see around them. If they see someone break down and bawl at every skinned knee and boo-boo, then that's how they're going to act. If they see that those around them curse and carry on when they stub a toe, then that's what they're going to do. If, however, they see that, when someone skins a knee, they say ouch, pick themselves back up, go clean and bandage their wound, then that's what they're going to do. None of the latter implies a lack of empathy or connection with others. You just cannot distance yourself from what you think I'm saying, and what I'm ACTUALLY saying.
I'm going to expect hard proof from multiple sources that these assertions are true. I think this is fair given the absolute if-then statements you're making. Relevant quotes will also be required as the board frowns upon dumping entire research papers on people.
I'll throw that right back at ya.

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Jub
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Jub » 2017-10-12 05:45am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:43am
I'll throw that right back at ya.
You're the one making the assertions ergo, you provide the proof. This is pretty simple and supported by the rules of this message board, so produce proof or get reported.

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biostem
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by biostem » 2017-10-12 05:48am

Jub wrote:
2017-10-12 05:45am
biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:43am
I'll throw that right back at ya.
You're the one making the assertions ergo, you provide the proof. This is pretty simple and supported by the rules of this message board, so produce proof or get reported.
Wrong - I started by responding to the original post. Others derailed the conversation into emotional grandstanding and virtue signaling, and I was just responding to them. At no point, did anyone actually address the points brought up in the OP, and instead resorted to personal attacks and/or character assassination. Now, will you demonstrate that appeals to the supernatural do in fact help with mourning or not?


https://jezebel.com/5825987/researchers ... know-sniff

http://www.mediate.com/articles/PollackPbl20110808.cfm

http://www.lesliefarnsworth.com/blog/20 ... -work.html
Last edited by biostem on 2017-10-12 05:54am, edited 1 time in total.

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loomer
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by loomer » 2017-10-12 05:53am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:48am
Jub wrote:
2017-10-12 05:45am
biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:43am
I'll throw that right back at ya.
You're the one making the assertions ergo, you provide the proof. This is pretty simple and supported by the rules of this message board, so produce proof or get reported.
Wrong - I started by responding to the original post. Others derailed the conversation into emotional grandstanding and virtue signaling.
Once you start making assertions, others have the right to challenge them and request evidence. That's how a debate works. You moved beyond just replying with an opinion into making categorical statements of fact - specifically that it is healthier to refrain from crying when grieving, and that religious grieving is a lie with long term harm attached to it - and it is those statements we are challenging you on.
"You're wonderful, and you're alive, and you deserve every little bit of happiness that the universe has to offer anyone, no matter who or what you like. Never forget that." - Achewood

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Jub
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Re: Is Religious-based Mourning Immoral?

Post by Jub » 2017-10-12 05:54am

biostem wrote:
2017-10-12 05:48am
Wrong - I started by responding to the original post. Others derailed the conversation into emotional grandstanding and virtue signaling.
In your response to me, you made the claim that if a person is exposed to a certain consistent behavior from a young enough age they will exhibit the same behavior later in life.

"If they see someone break down and bawl at every skinned knee and boo-boo, then that's how they're going to act. If they see that those around them curse and carry on when they stub a toe, then that's what they're going to do. If, however, they see that, when someone skins a knee, they say ouch, pick themselves back up, go clean and bandage their wound, then that's what they're going to do."

Do you deny that you typed the above-quoted text? If you don't, then you owe me proof that this is a scientifically founded claim or you owe me a concession. You don't get to make a claim and then cry when someone asks you for proof. If you fail to do so, the mods will be called in and I do so hope that they're in a bad mood when the deal with you.

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