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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from Ireth

    You missed the point on all accounts. You keep deflecting instead of answering the questions or stating your beliefs. And still more lies about the Church are spread.

    Seeing as I don't actually have any "beliefs," that is, non-evidential claims to knowledge, I think you either misunderstood what I wrote, or you're simply being disingenuous.

    Quote from Ireth

    "...proud intellectual badge of honor"? Why are you so proud of choosing a position based on 'empirical' evidence? You claim a religious man a fool, but to look at the universe and all its complexities, to look at the human species and our DNA, to look our lives and not see the need and desire for a loving, omnipotent creator is foolish. How can you look at the Big Bang and not see a creator?

    Because empirical evidence is all we have. It is the only way that I can take an idea I have, test it, and pass it to others for the same testing and further scrutiny. It is the only way to seriously pursue knowledge. We may not gain an "ultimate" understanding of rocks through geology, but we learn more about geological processes with each passing year. Gaining more knowledge about the universe is obviously preferable to accepting that we can't know anything about it. You could not be on a computer, on the internet, and using a keyboard, without the aid of empiricism. None of those inventions would have been made without people questioning the nature of the world we live in and seeking to know more about it.

    To say something as absurd as "look at all the complexity," implying that the universe is simply too magnificent to learn anything about it, is to deny the intellect that evolution developed in our species. We have the capacity to learn more about the origin of the universe, substituting a creator and implying the job is there-by done: that's nothing short of willful ignorance


    Quote from Ireth

    Quote from proletaria

    In perfect honesty, I find you asking why I reject such a church to be almost fascicle.

    "I do not think it means what you think it means." -Inigo Montoya

    Good catch on that typo. I meant farcical. ;)

    Quote from Ireth

    And why are there natural physical laws?

    I cannot empirically prove God's existence, just as you cannot empirically disprove his existence.

    And yet the claim, admittedly impossible to prove, has been used as justification for slavery, homophobia, subjugation of women, war on other religious groups, war on other ethnic groups, anti-abortion, anti-medicine, and anti-science movements the world over, just to name a few.

    For such an obviously vacuous claim, it appears that a whole lot has been argued with a basis in that irrational assumption.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from Ireth

    I could prove my interpretation valid to a Protestant, however, you will ignore it because the proof would largely come from the bible.

    You really have no respect for the word "truth," if you're going to say that a line in the book in-question is proof positive that one is reading that very book correctly or not. Unless you are going to be a strict literalist, and as a catholic you most certainly cannot do that, you have no grounds on which to refute someone else' opinions with your own or that of some obviously human hierarchy whom you attribute with divine inspiration.

    Quote from Ireth

    Do you agree with this equation: Human_Life_A = Human_Life_B? At the point of conception, the mass of cells is a human life. All that happens after is simply the 'mass of cells' aging.

    I would leave that to the biologists who know more about those cells. Obviously there's more to the process than an arbitrary moment can describe. I simply think the more reasonable position is completely development, at birth, rather than conception. As I said, I could be swayed on the issue of at what point in a pregnancy an abortion was more or less ethical, but ultimately it's the woman's body and her right to choose. I have to respect a human being who has been alive for a few decades, more than I respect the potential life of her fetus. To do so in reverse is to make women slaves to their uterus and in extreme cases (hello senator Akin) to their rapist. I find that a far more obvious problem than that of not bringing a pregnancy to term.

    Quote from Ireth

    You still haven't answered my question. You even removed it from my quote. Why do you care about the well being of others? Why does almost everyone on this planet have an understanding of good and evil and have a predisposition towards good?

    I care about the well being of other for the same reason you do, although you've mistakenly assumed it to be god instead. Human beings are socially evolved primates. The healthy minds among us do want to work together and do care that others are healthy too. Nobody on this planet has a concrete understanding of good and evil, as I said those concepts are meaningless absolutes in a relative universe. I explained the predisposition for good above. Healthy humans (ie. not mentally ill) are prone to help one another and work to be a cohesive social unit. That is much of what we consider to be "good," and it's no surprise religions have borrowed heavily from this. It is our evolutionary moral compass.

    Quote from Ireth

    Acts 17:25-28; 1 Tim. 2:4

    A heretic is someone who rejects the teachings of the church. If you don't know the church how can you reject it?


    By now you must know that a rational person feels no more obliged to take the acts of the apostles at face value than they do Shakespeare or Tolstoy. You have presumed to say that your church has some immense value and we should all know those teachings? I say to you that I am well aware of it's teachings, but you reject that notion on the grounds that it can only be interpreted as such a wonderful thing. Clearly that is not the case.

    To be a heretic is to wear a proud intellectual badge of honor; To recognize the invalid "truths," that holy-books and their clergymen foist upon their inculcated populations. We aren't rejecting anything out of hand and if you take the time to read the argument here, I trust you'll have a more constructive point to articulate.

    In perfect honesty, I find you asking why I reject such a church to be almost farcical. Why would anyone hesitate to argue against a body so bent on human suffering that they, to this day, support the suffering of homosexuals, support the genocide of non-Christians in the Balkans and in Africa, support the spreading of lies concerning contraception in Africa and elsewhere in the developing world? On what ground can you possible claim moral superiority? On what grounds can you insist that I, or anyone else, is missing out on a "truth," worth having? The most-holy of your religious tradition are sat in a golden city debating homosexuality and the finer points of child-birth (quite ironic since they're all virgin men) while the vast majority of their laypersons are wrought with hunger, disease, and violence.

    A heretic indeed is someone who rejects the teachings of the church. I ask you then: How can you not be counted among us?
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from Slayerviper

    The basic principles of religion I’m fine with (be a good person); however using religion to teach and control is an outdated practice. At one point when lightning occurred humans thought the Gods were angry because they didn’t understand what was happening. Religion filled a void of science that wasn’t accessible to the masses for a long period of time. As for proving Gods, the above posters have stated enough it cannot be proved or disproved; I have nothing to say on the matter.

    I get this point of view a lot, from both religious persons and non-believers alike, and I think it has merit in the context that religion continues to evolve with society. Having said that, I think there's also a degree of wishful thinking inherent in this proposition. If we're being brutally honest; Religion isn't meant to make you an objectively good person (in so far as we understand objective good), but rather a good follower. One might say they are good due to religion because that is how they (mis)understand the concept of good or right action based on their theology, but I don't tend to allow anyone to claim they have a handle on what's good simply because they are following the tenants of a supposedly good or wise leader (be that leader an actual person, deity, or anything else).

    Religion certainly was man's first way of explaining the universe as he could perceive it, but that has slowly but surely given way to our empirical sciences. That isn't to suggest science currently has all the answers, but through science we now understand that the sum total of religion is simply conjecture or a means of guessing based on absolutely no (or very little) evidence. I do understand that some persons are simply unwilling to give up their long-held beliefs because it feels good, but I don't see much of a reason to believe something because it can't be falsified. As I've said here before, I can't disprove dragons, unicorns, or fairies, but there are not many people around who consider a belief in those things to be anything but an obviously antiquated superstition. I would simply like to live in a world where god (like the many gods before it) was treated in the same fashion.

    Myths, legends, and quirky beliefs do make for wonderful poetry and prose. I doubt the Vedas, Bible, or Koran could ever be ignored for their historical and cultural impact on society. But the onus that true belief in these books (and creative interpretations of those literal beliefs) will continue to confound humanity until we can make that transition. Unless we accept the premise that the world will always be tribally divided on the basis of who was raised in what religious tradition, I think we owe it to ourselves to be more of a skeptic and less accepting of irrationality in all it's forms.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from Greenjoke

    of course believers can't prove god exists. if there were proof then more people would belong to the religion with proof. some would still deny it just like people still deny evolution, but that's typical.

    The problem is, to doubt religion is treated with the same animosity as the doubt for evolution; however, doubting evolution is to ignore evidence. Doubting god on the other hand is to simply acknowledge that there is no evidence for any such thing. The two are not similar propositions.

    Quote from Greenjoke

    you could try something easier. instead of asking them to prove their god exists, ask them to prove their god is the correct one. but, they can't do that either obviously.

    I'd been tempted several times to edit the OP to reflect something more like this, but the thread is quite old and I didn't want to invalidate quotes or seem to be misleading later posters by editing things so far post-facto. I think the thread made it along just as well, even if I did have some moving to do in getting to the point.

    Quote from Greenjoke

    what can they prove? that they are just as susceptible to parental/community brainwashing or fear of the unknown as billions of other humans. both those currently living and the billions of humans who are long dead that belonged to thousands of different religions or belief structures.

    I think the point here, as always, is to introduce people to rational thought in the context of religion. In point of logical fact, the truly honest will (and did) move directly to admission that faith is required and we get to argue from that point. If they attempt to introduce bad evidence, there is a whole series of debates to be had before they're willing to make that step.

    Strictly speaking, if nobody wants to think about it and just accepts faith and irrationality over evidence, the conversation is over. But, I'd like to think for every person who takes this cop-out there are a few more who do not. Bringing more people to the point of shrugging off their irrational worldviews and considering evidence in a logical way is the goal. The props used to engage that argument are a matter of taste. I don't particularly care if someone comes out of the thread as an atheist, deist, or theist, but I do think they'll be more critical in their assessment of dogma in any case.

    If you're arguing the line of debate in general bears no fruit, I think we have 50 and some pages of evidence to the contrary. If you're arguing that the debate is simply a waste of time, well, I don't feel my time was wasted and I've been the major participant here. Others are, of course, free to feel their time was wasted, but that wasn't the purpose of the thread.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from zoombot

    To believe in G-d takes a leap of faith, but in all of science everything tends to chaos. All except living organic things. They tend to get more and more complex. Look at your hand or a leaf this isn't random it is very very organized and each generation is more so. Just saying. Jewish by choice, but beleive your G-d is also probably the one that is mine.

    The entropic principle you're referring to isn't a means to necessitate divinity. If anything it is a part of the huge body of understanding we have that shows how the universe works in absence of a theologically inclined source. The evolution of living things and non-living (starts, planets, and all manner of technically non-living things have evolved with the developing universe too) shows the source of diversity is not abjectly random events or organized designs, but rather the selection (by environmental pressures) of random mutations/changes over a very long period of time.

    You're right that the god of the aberhamic traditions is the same, theologically, across the three faiths that share it as a concept. However, this doesn't wash with other faimilies of religions. The god of Aberham is not anything like Vishnu or Zaroaster. Ultimately, the attempt to coagulate dogma in this manner is simply to round-off a serious divide in irrational claims by making yet-another irrational claim (that all the myths are pointing in the same direction).
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from Ireth

    Please quote a verse that could be interpreted to advocate a pre-emptive military strike against Iran. Even if you can convolute some verse to support your position, the Church maintains that it is the authortiy on interpretation of the scripture. Your interpreation of the bible would need to be in line with the Church in order for me to believe it. Which is why I would also contend that Protestantism is not a reasonable reponse to Jesus Christ because thousands of demoninations who believe their own understanding of scripture to be the "Truth" is a logical fallacy.

    I think you're conflating "the church," as in the catholic church with it's own doctorine, with christianity and the plethora of protestant spinoffs. The evangelical movement which uses passages such as this one from Romans: "I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin," to justify Zionism and support for it's aggression against neighbor states are majority protestant. As for the idea that anyone's interpretation of the biblical mythos is more valid than another, I think it's entirely foolish to attempt that argument. If it all comes down to taking one or another line on faith, there is no distinguishing factor between which interpretation is correct. All I need to do is point out one way in which something is being interpreted to comment. You; however, have to prove the validity of your specific counter-interpretation. I don't suggest what they're arguing is right. I think you're both flattering a millennial book with far more import than it's value. But I can tell you, logically, you have no way to prove an irrational assertion with another irrational assertion.

    Quote from Ireth

    A large part of the world, US social conservatives and Israelis included, regard Iran's acquisition of nuclear capabilites to be a threat to global safety. So does our very liberal president.
    I never said there are no good reasons to fear that outcome. I simply cited the irrational forces at work and attempting to influence policy.

    Quote from Ireth

    I think you would agree that the if people over the age of 35 started to produce stem cells in their brains it would absolutely wrong/evil to murder and harvest 35 year olds' brains to correct ailments and disease in the younger population.

    Full-stop with the stawman argument. I'm not going to take you seriously if you're going to compare a collection of unaware cell matter to a living human being who has had a lifetime of experience.

    Quote from Ireth

    People commit acts of evil without having social disorders. People with true social disorders don't understand their acts to be evil which is why they don't apply to a "moral compass".

    I don't think evil has any meaning in that liberal of a context. If you mean to say "anyone would steal," (under certain circumstances) than you'd be right. But, is there never a time when theft is not so bad or perhaps a lesser good? Do you think the character of robin hood was inherently evil? What about stealing from a dictatorial government in the modern day? What about taking someone's harmful drugs away from them to facilitate their recovery?

    The problem with the bipolar worldview is that it's oversimplified.

    Quote from Ireth

    I am simply impressing the biblical view of the start of the universe in which Adam and Eve knew God. I do not contend that everyone on earth has been exposed to monotheistic teaching. Catholocism does not exclude those who have not.

    Adam and Eve being a myth, your contention is just wrong then. Monotheism is not some kind of innate way of thinking. There are many more polytheistic religions in history and still are quite a few polytheists to this day.

    Quote from Ireth

    Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium)," "Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do His will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience those too may achieve eternal salvation" (no. 16).

    This is how dogma prevents becoming obviously irrelevant and contrived in a modern setting where people actually know of other religions and good people who are their adherents. In the past, the church would have said they're all heretics and pagans. Today they are simply knowing the grace of god in another way. If this isn't obvious ass-covering I don't know what is. The bible says nothing of this sort about non-jew/christians.


    Quote from Ludo_frodo

    In my opinon, there are 2 extremly annoying groups: the believers and non believers. In my opinion, they are no difference between them. Both groups believe in something and why should some one prove anything? This doesnt make sense. The title of this thread, could also be "Prove me god doesnt exists". What is the difference?

    So we have this annoying group of athiests, if we ask them, why, they will usually answer with "because i believe in science". Did you know, even the greatest of scientists(people who knows better than you and i)believes in god? Fair enough if you think god doenst exists, but its so dumb to use this as your argument. It would be better, if you could tell people, why religion is nonsense and because you actually know something about religion.

    The believers are not better, just in another way.

    I went over the crucial, rational, difference between the position of the believer and that of the atheist. I wish I could link it for you, but alas I've lost track of it. The jist of it is: We simply say there is no evidence and thus no reason to assume god. There's no "we're smarter," or any snobbishness of the sort. There is a great deal of pleading to realize the value of evidence, but I think those two are easily conflated by someone who simply isn't reasonable (by no fault of their own) due to indoctrination.

    Prove to me that dragons exist, is a logical question posed to someone who claims to know about dragons. Prove to me that dragons don't exist, is a useless question. You can't prove a negative and assuming that something exists simply because we have a claimant is not the least bit rational.

    Also, great scientists by-in-large don't believe in any god at all and the few who do are majority deistic (a position which is insurmountable, but still a lackadaisical assumption). Only the very few are theists and even they are defenders of scientific rationalism, evolution, and the rest of it. As for the reason why religion is actually not helpful or worthy of criticism. It's on almost every page of this thread. You should take a look.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from Ireth

    As a Catholic I find the misrepresentation of Catholic dogma and history to be almost laughable.

    One might follow this with an explanation if the intention was to correct an error.

    Quote from Ireth

    How are you correlating Christian dogma with a pre-emptive military strike? I would point to a bilical reference specifically stating otherwise.

    You could easily justify either position, depending on the verses you select and the interpretation you wish to advocate for. This in no way changes the reality that social conservatives rally behind the idea of pre-emptive military action against Tehran for biblical pro-Zionist reasons.

    Quote from Ireth

    What small but notable human tragedies have occured because of a life at conception veiwpoint? When do you believe human life occurs?

    As I already mentioned, stem cell research being under-utilized and under-funded is a human tragedy. The sheer number of ailments which could be corrected and cured by this avenue of science is astounding and yet we're hamstrung by the conception argument.

    Human life begins at birth - life defined as a collection of cells absent conscious brain function doesn't make any sense to me, but I do sympathise with those who are against late-term abortion and might be convinced of a moral objection to abortion after brain function has been established. I'm no neurologist enough to argue the timeline of fetal development. Ultimately there is no position I can defensibly take on the matter other than it is a woman's right to choose.

    Quote from Ireth

    Regarding your proposal in the OP. I would propose that every human has a built in moral compass (except for the clinically insane). You have proclaimed that modern progessive thought is more capable than christianity in reaching a solution where "we all get along". Why do we need to reach a solution where we get along? Where does the morall compass or desire to avoid intrinsically evil things come from?

    I'm glad you find the concept of innate evolutionary social development and morality convincing, but I do have to wonder (if you are serious about that admission) how you can even ask those questions?

    It's patently obvious we need to get along for the continuity of our species and the improvement sum-total of our collective lives and the lives of generations to come. To borrow Sam Harris' term: moving along the "moral landscape," to a point of greater well-being for everyone, requires a societal effort. If you don't expect people to get along, it's hard to imagine they would feasibly cooperate to that end.

    The question of evil is something you more or less answered for yourself. Those who exhibit traits of sociopathy, psychopathy, and other nerological/genetic a-social disorders are always going to be a fount of "evil," which has to be dealt with. Dealing with that is best accomplished by understanding the genetic and environmental causes, not by branding everyone a sinner at birth or simply assuming an evil entity juxtaposed to an almighty good.


    Quote from Ireth

    I would contend that humanity did not exist prior to the founding of monotheism.

    Then you would be impressing upon your readers an entirely new definition of humanity, because (taking the accepted usage of the word) you are demonstrably wrong. Even the written historical record, in many places, positively pre-dates monotheism. Your assertion would be akin to saying most inhabitants of the Indian subcontinent is still something less than human. I would hope you know better than that.

    Quote from tyler_harb

    I wonder what life must be like for the relatives of Proletaria. Can you imagine having him around during the holidays? If he talks the way he types, it would be like having dinner with a fusion of C.S Lewis and Hannibal Lecter. Even if he isn't one who is vocal about his stance, you sure as hell know that his family has access to his facebook, which is guaranteed to be jacked up beyond belief with propaganda that most of them wouldn't even be able to fathom.

    Sweet mother of ad hominem! Just to correct a few points: Firstly, I don't have a facebook account, nor do I feel the urge to lambaste my few living relatives with the rhetoric I espouse here at all times. Free thinking and rationality are not the abandonment of tact. Secondly, I think it's positively ironic (in a cute way) that you should suggest my mode of speaking to be propagandist in nature. If anything, my goal is to dissuade people from accepting the truth of indoctrination and propaganda by fiat.

    Quote from tyler_harb

    Keep up the good work. Keep fighting the good fight. Take away every ounce of faith and hope that you possibly can from others. Keep prying away from them their hope in a god who they believe loves and cares for them; so that they too may find themselves lost in oblivion like the rest of us. Without hope and without reason. Ironically, it's sh!t like that that leaves me yet with an open mind.

    I fail to see a negative correlation between an open mind and accepting false premises or bad evidence (or no evidence at all). I will continue to "pry away," at the minds of others. The hope I have (founded in the observation of secular humanism in history) is that more people will abandon their fruitless delusions and attempt to improve our collective experience. To quote Marx:

    "The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness. To call on them to give up their illusions about their condition is to call on them to give up a condition that requires illusions. The criticism of religion is, therefore, in embryo, the criticism of that vale of tears of which religion is the halo. Criticism has plucked the imaginary flowers on the chain not in order that man shall continue to bear that chain without fantasy or consolation, but so that he shall throw off the chain and pluck the living flower."

    Quote from Ireth

    Evil is perspective, there is no such thing as good or evil.

    You are basically saying that our perspective changes reality; that becase two people can disagree on what is good and what is evil, no such things exist.

    If you really believed there is no such thing as good or evil, I don't think you would be alive today.

    While I advocate for the position of objective, rather than abject relativism, I don't think you adequately appreciate the argument. Good and evil are simply ideas, characterizations of actions that society deems to be worthy of repetition or not and in the context they were carried out, based on the alternatives. If we know something about the common human experience (excising that of the mentally ill, because our social needs cannot be diluted by the will of a psychopath) then we have a basis upon which to articulate what makes things good or at least better than alternatives.

    It's true that two people can disagree with what good and evil is, but one of them can - by extension - be demonstrably wrong in their assertion by objective means. If you were to say that castrating every other male child at birth was "good," because of a divine edict it would be just as silly as someone suggesting that a society built on this grotesque idea was operating under it's own unimpeachable moral sphere where it was an objectively "good," thing.

    The more we understand about the mental and physical human experience, the better we can objectively identify and pursue "good," things. Evil will always be nothing more than a pejorative term for things that aren't even close to optimal in terms of attempting an outcome for humanity that is socially positive. To say any one action is "evil," (not by comparison, but by fiat) is to try and prove a negative. You are insisting that something is never good, always the lowest possible rung on the ladder. I think you'll find that is a trough position to argue for.

    There are actions, in our present situation and society, which are bad or demonstrably worse for us than their alternatives. If you wish to use that as a context for "evil," then you have my support, but you should be clear in articulating this beforehand as it is not the common usage of the word.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    Quote from EisenHoward

    If there's something i've learned from the internet, it is that discussing religion is a complete and utter waste of time and brings no purpose whatsoever.

    Leaving aside the baffling bold portion of your sentence, I can't seem to find anything but irony.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on General Government Discussion Thread
    As my students might say: "Shit just got real."

    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on Paragon farmers: How much xp / hour are you getting?
    Quote from Bilge

    On the other hand, looking back, I didn't really baes my statement on any logic, just a notion. You could also argue it the other way around; that it doesn't matter what order you do them in because you're likely to kill as much trash between each pack while stacking up no matter what maps you start with. In my defense, I may have gotten the notion because I only took data with 5 stacks, so figuring out where to stack up first was on my mind.

    I'm trying to unpack the notion myself, but I can't shake the (possibly unfounded) feeling that there is merit to that assumption. There are certainly some waypoint locations one could start with that will cause a lot of trash-killing to occur prior to many NV stacks accruing. ie. If you went to stonefort (to use a rather extreme example) from square one and then on to the fields. There may ultimately be a degree of overlap due to time spent jogging between superior NV waypoints and better farming zones, but I would be troubled to say that completely negates the benefit.

    Perhaps it's late and my intensive grading has fried the old noggin.
    Posted in: Witch Doctor: The Mbwiru Eikura
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    posted a message on Paragon farmers: How much xp / hour are you getting?
    Quote from Bilge

    Actually I'm finding some surprising things. For example my Stonefort and Keep lv 1 exp is pretty bad, 15-18 mill / hour. But I'm getting 30+ in Arreat lv 1, a map most farmers ignore. And the reason you want to start in Core is that it's a short zone with at least one pack, usually two - you want to stack up in these quick zones, then do the longer ones, which have more available exp, with a full 5stack. I'll probably post my data later tonight in the general forum, but it's looking like my runs will go Core -> Keep 3 -> Tower Damned 1 -> Arreat 1 + 2 -> Fields of Slaughter -> Rakkis south.

    That's an excellent point. It's very important to optimize how quickly you collect those NV stacks. I'd love to see that data about which methods you found most effective. I've been going on nothing more than intuition and I have probably hurt my xp per hour by not mixing up that path very much.
    Posted in: Witch Doctor: The Mbwiru Eikura
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    posted a message on Paragon farmers: How much xp / hour are you getting?
    Quote from Jaetch

    I never do bosses. I never pick up items below level 63 other than jewelry and uniques. I don't pick up plans other than Exalted Grand or legendary. I don't pick up off-hands or 2h weapons other than bows/crossbows. I ignore all blues, gems, tomes, and potions. At below 5 NV, I even ignore goblins.

    This is key, as far as I understand it. Taking the method of starting at the checkpoint just before Azmodan and working backward to high-value waypoints appears to be far and away the superior method. Once you have that basic template down, there's little to be done aside from accelerating the rate at which you kill elites, trash, and up your movement speed. I never took the extreme position of not picking up ilvl 61+ rares (although I have ignored blues and misc junk like gems and tomes for a while), but I don't actually grind enough for such a hair-splitting efficiency move to matter. I put in 1-2 runs of act3 (usually just 1) per night a couple nights a week and that is why i'm still plvl 25. :/
    Posted in: Witch Doctor: The Mbwiru Eikura
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    posted a message on Paragon farmers: How much xp / hour are you getting?
    When I dumped all my gold into glass cannon gear I was burning at ~20mil full-steam-ahead. I've now taken most of it to the AH for resale and plan to try a different gearing approach more focused on staying alive. I think minimizing deaths in act3 is more important than anything else. The walk back from checkpoints in most of that act is brutal.
    Posted in: Witch Doctor: The Mbwiru Eikura
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    posted a message on Leeching beasts.. useless?
    Most people are playing one character 90% of the time because of paragon levels. I figured that was an obvious critique.
    Posted in: Witch Doctor: The Mbwiru Eikura
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    posted a message on Prove to me that your God exists.
    The case-in-point of abominable, irrational, and untenable truth claims: Today there are Christians who, by virtue of faith in their dogma think that our secular state should pre-emptively strike a Muslim country (Iran) before the Jewish state (Israel) can do the same, or at the request of Israel; however you want to read it. The Muslims feel their dogma justifies their entitlement to most of (if not all) the land currently occupied by Israel. The Jews feel their dogma justifies their entitlement to the land currently occupied by Israel. The Christians either want to support the Jewish claim or want to instigate a conflict between the two because it would bring about the Armageddon mentioned in their book of revelation.

    The ongoing debate of how to create a 2-state solution in Israel/Palestine is constantly derailed by dogma. The conflict is continually escalated by dogma. And unfortunately, there is no way for a moderate of any of these religious groups to diffuse it (and they have tried. Ask Tony Blair, Jimmy Carter, George Bush, Bill Clinton, and a thousand others who arbitrated negotiations over the years). This is the defining achievment of religious faith and one that moderates must honestly come to grips with. Their simple false-consolation (ie. I don't have any reason to believe this rationally, but it would be nice and I grew up around it, so I continue) is not harmful in and of itself. But indirectly it prevents them from taking the one and only stand that can end these conflicts once and for all: Faith is nothing but the assertion of truth without evidence or on bad evidence. When someone says "this land belongs to me because of a 6000 year old book [of fiction]" they are necessarily making a statement with zero validity.

    The moment you allow even the slightest shred of validity in that line of reasoning, such as "his faith that the book is the word of god," to progress there is absolutely no ground left to stand on. You have allowed someone with a clinically insane point of view to stand toe to toe with the most progressive, modern, and sophisticated understandings of human well being and how we might best get along rather than kill one another. This simply cannot be allowed. Fanatics of all stripes need to be stamped out, not apologized for.
    Posted in: General Discussion
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