Interview with Courtney Connatser
I wanted to have a good recorded chat and hear about her life, thoughts, anarchism, humanism, feminism, and atheism, all of it, as she is an interesting person. I think Courtney Connatser has ideas that people need to hear, her voice and thoughts matter, as they are so wonderfully authentic. Moreover, I wanted to let people hear other voices, to hear from unique women, or other communities that are marginalized, subjugated or oppressed, and thus I give you an interview with genuine and passionate, artist, activist, and creative writer Courtney Connatser.
“I want to change the world still, but I also want to stay in and only face myself most days. You just need to accept your weirdness. I’m a recluse, sweetheart, with no friends. I do embrace my weirdness. Your looks aren’t important, Your popularity isn’t important, and Your intelligence isn’t important. Anyone who makes you feel like a lesser person in one of those three categories, you can ignore.“ – Courtney Connatser
Courtney Connatser would say she is between Ignostic Atheism and Antitheist Atheism. I am a firebrand atheist. I’m an anti-accommodationist to organized religion, she would be more accommodating to personal spirituality.
Her personal held belief is that evidence shows a dissemination of traditional organized religions. Especially the monotheistic (Man-o-theism) religions, one of which she grew up in. Christianity. So, she finds them easier to combat and to ridicule. Her personal experiences with that religion as far as discrimination against other races, religions, sexualities outside the norm, lifestyles outside the norm leads me to the conclusion that it is more important to combat because through the texts and the history of the rhetoric of the churches it is quite easy to mislead and to hurt others in our community, and she finds that to be a necessary fight, to try to help as many people from getting hurt by these particular religions as possible.
Courtney Connatser really dislikes any spirituality that puts rules on humanity or nature that is not established by physical laws or that necessitates all humans to be, think or believe one thing.
She thinks the evidence shows that even if we are part of a larger organism that we can’t understand, I don’t think that larger organism is conscious of us, is a human, like a creature or relevant to our existence. She will entertain someone and say, if there’s evidence out there that ever proves then, yes, she will believe, but she is highly doubtful that any evidence will ever be provided in her lifetime, if ever. Her stance has evolved over time, she was a believer as a child. She began questioning as a young adult, in her teens. She didn’t leave the church or publicly announce my atheism until she was 23. And, now she is 29 and an outspoken atheist. She is a secular humanist and not against trans-humanism, for it makes her smile. She holds an axiological rationalist persuasion. Although to her nihilism has its points. She is an activist. A feminist, for all human rights including race and LGBT. She is an anarchist, that votes green. Anti-capitalist and anti-war. Supports ending the drug war. She generally says she is a bisexual because she has only had sex with males and females, but I could probably be more pansexual. Overall, she is a woman, so far as she knows as she doesn’t actually know her composition of x or y genes, so whom knows. But, She states that she has got all the female parts or so they say. Leave and be yourself elsewhere or stay silent and be happy here. The option given to Courtney by her family. She chose to leave and be herself. Even if it’s by herself.
All writing from this space on is about Damien Marie AtHope
Do you believe in god?
What is a god? Are you asking me if magic exists? Well, my answer as an ignostic atheist is, first prove the actuality of simple magic, before you try to ask anyone about the possibility of some supreme magic.
“Reason is my only master, whereas faith offered as reality is most defiantly not my friend.”
Theistic believers think that as an atheist, I have a life without meaning. What foolishness, I only have this one short life, how precious life is when you only have “one life” with no extra afterlives nor any reincarnation do-overs.
No, as an atheist, there is just this one valuable life, may I live it well.
Therefore as you can guess they would say we are better off that no god(s) or goddess(es) existed and it would be much worse if they did. Morover, axiological attitudes toward God’s existence are axiological theism (thinking God’s existence to be a good thing), axiological atheism (thinking God’s existence to be a bad thing) and axiological agnosticism (indifference toward God’s existence). Issues in the Philosophy of Religion an axiological approach
Axiological Atheism can be thought to involve ethical/value theory reasoned and moral argument driven apatheism, ignosticism, atheism, anti-theism, anti-religionism, secularism, and humanism. Axiological Atheist, can be understood as a value theory or value science Atheist. As such axiological atheism’s ethically reasoning is constructive and pro-humanity. We who believe we are thinking rational, leading to opposition or hate of religion may that be limited to the nonfactual or oppressive ideology and not the people. Beyond just not being something lets be something, rational thinking should challenge myths but also prove our love for humanity and care for all living beings. In most cases, Axiological atheism would assert the traditional concept of “Atheism” answers only a single question: Is there a creator god or not? That is an important question, but if your answer is “no”, it is only a starting point and not a way of life. You may have reached that viewpoint based on your respect for logic, evidence, science,and personal experience which too are vital values. Yet, after you have reached that initial “no god” answer, all the other important questions in life, all the options for mental and emotional wholeness and social and environmental harmony, ethics and morality, personal fulfillment, social values, philosophy and psychology remain open. That is where “Axiological Atheism” holds a connection to both further challenging the god concept and devaluing religion and adding a value meaning and ethical axiological ideology to guide universally desirable secular ethical way of being or a value driven life lived in this reality.
As such axiological atheism’s ethically reasoned antitheism & antireligionism is constructive and pro-humanity. We who believe we are thinking rational, leading to opposition or hate of religion may that be limited to the nonfactual or oppressive ideology and not the people. Beyond just not being something lets be something, rational thinking should challenge myths but also prove our love for humanity and care for all living beings. In most cases, Axiological atheism would assert the traditional concept of “Atheism” answers only a single question: Is there a creator god or not? That is an important question, but if your answer is “no”, it is only a starting point and not a way of life.
You may have reached that viewpoint based on your respect for logic, evidence, science,and personal experience which too are vital values. Yet, after you have reached that initial “no god” answer, all the other important questions in life, all the options for mental and emotional wholeness and social and environmental harmony, ethics and morality, personal fulfillment, social values, philosophy and psychology remain open. That is where “Axiological Atheism” holds a connection to both further challenging the god concept and devaluing religion and adding a value meaning and ethical axiological ideology to guide universally desirable secular ethical way of being or a value driven life lived in this reality.
What is Axiology, Formal Axiology & Axiological Profiling?
Axiology is the name for “value theory.” It is derived from the Greek word “axios” meaning “worth.” Formal axiology is the logic-based science of value anchored in a “hierarchy of meaning” from the most meaningful or richest value to the most destructive or greatest value loss. The logic specifies 18 different levels of richness. Hartman’s “hierarchy of value” is the mathematical measuring standard for human evaluative judgment and decision-making in life and in all social sectors of life in our culture. When people make value judgments, they use both their mental and emotional capacities to arrive at their decision. Some people have very solid and reliable decision-making abilities – while others routinely make wrong or inaccurate choices. Axiological profiles measure the quality of the respondent’s judgment and decision-making by gauging both their mental clarity and their emotional orientation & conditioning.
Formal Axiology (Scientific Axiology/Scientific Value Theory) takes a realistic, or fact-based, view of the world when assessing or understanding value/good/worth. Formal axiology understands that people have and act upon values. Scientific axiologists will seek to understand what those values are, and to analyze their structure. That empirical orientation is why scientific axiology can serve as the formal side of the yet to be developed value sciences. To illustrate this value realism, suppose a theist states they love god(s). Since the science of value has an empirical orientation, a value scientist would see the theistic belief in god(s) not as some actual existing being, instead understand it as a conception in the mind of theist not anything realistic or fact-based. Ref
Dr. Leon Pomeroy in his book, The New Science of Axiological Psychology (Pomeroy, 2005), has shown that formal axiology is also empirically valid. Thus, in our axiological assessment profiles we have the solid support of both scientific methods: the deductive logic-based axiomatic method and the inductive, empirical method. Dr. Pomeroy spent over 20 years collecting statistical data for his book cross-nationally, from numerous and diverse eastern and western countries and cultures, and proving that cultures all over the world make value judgments in the same way.
Neuro‐Axiology: merges Neuroscience understanding how the brain works with Axiology’s formal science that makes possible the objective measurement of value how humans make value judgments. (You will ALWAYS choose what you think adds the MOST value to your life.) Accepting the standard of neuroscientific model of consciousness means that everything we think, feel, remember, and do is a function of the brain. This includes the emotion of empathy. We are not empathic because it makes sense to be empathic – meaning that most humans don’t simply reason their way to empathy. Nor do we simply learn empathy (although brain development is an interactive process with the environment, so we can’t rule out environmental influences). For the most part, we have empathy because our brains are wired with empathy as a specific function.
Like every function of the body you can think of, if it is not essential for survival then some subset of the human population likely has a disorder or even absence of this function. We recognize the biological limits of empathy or absence of empathy as the disorder, psychopathy. It is estimated that about 1% of the general population are psychopaths, while about 20-30% of the US prison population. Dr. Robert S. Hartman discovered that people hold back a 40% latent reserve of cooperation and productivity until they have been valued as human beings.Axiology is the science of how humans value and make value judgments as well as how they relate to ethics (not moral values often religious or culture relative).
The basics of Axiology are in its 3 Classes of Value and 6 “Advisors”. The following are the Classes of Value:1. Systemic: plans, rules, best practices, procedures; ideas or expectations2. Extrinsic: practical or situational; measurable, tracked; tasks (tangible)3. Intrinsic: personal or transcendent; infinitely valuable; irreplaceable; human beings (intangibles)
The following are the 6 Advisors which consist of 2 views of one inward and one outward and one must remember people are neither their thoughts nor their advisors.1. World View: Empathy-Intuition “people”, Practical Judgment “tasks, & Systems Thinking “plans & ideas”2. Self View: Self-Esteem “who you are”, Role Awareness “what you do,” & Self Direction “where you go”.
The word “Axiological” (to the term “Axiological atheism” is meant to denote an atheistic “Value” rejection of the existence of gods or supreme beings and in favor of a “higher absolute” such as humanity or universal ethical principles. The perception of moral obligation removed from ethical sensitivity to universal justice [is] thus unintelligible as “higher absolute”. As a form of atheism, Axiological favors humanity as the absolute source of holistic ethics and care values which permits individuals to resolve moral problems without resorting to a god’s moral obligation which is anti-humanity and not needing to connect to equal justice. Axiological Atheism can be seen as ethically reasoned antitheism and antireligionism where it is all about axiology values that underlie the universal truths. A few examples of universal truths such as there is no such thing as just rape, no honorable thoughtful unwanted torture, and no just humanistic caring abuse of the innocent. You can offer excuses but the true values violations hold true. Axiologists are broadly concerned with all forms of value including aesthetic values, ethical values, and epistemic values. In a narrow sense, axiologists are concerned with what is intrinsically valuable or worthwhile—what is desirable for its own sake. All axiological issues are necessarily connected to ontological and epistemological assumptions.
Axiology in Axiological Atheism can be seen as applying science of morality, referring to its ethically naturalistic views basing morality on rational and empirical consideration of the natural world. The idea of a science of morality has been explored by writers like Joseph Daleiden in The Science of Morality: The Individual, Community, and Future Generations or more recently by neuroscientist Sam Harris in the 2010 book The Moral Landscape. Harris’ science of morality suggests that scientists using empirical knowledge, especially neuropsychology and metaphysical naturalism, in combination with axiomatic values as “first principles”, would be able to outline a universal basis for morality. Harris and Daleiden chiefly argue that society should consider normative ethics to be a domain of science whose purpose amounts to the pursuit of flourishing (well-being). “Science” should not be so narrowly defined as to exclude important roles for any academic disciplines which base their conclusions on the weight of empirical evidence. The term “science of morality” is also sometimes used for the description of moral systems in different cultures or species.
The axiological movement emerges from the phenomenological method. The axiologists sought to characterize the notion of value in general, of which moral value is only one species. They argue against Kant, that goodness does not exclusively derive from the will, but exists in objective hierarchies. They emphasize the extent to which it is through emotions and feelings that human beings discern values. The notion of right action is understood derivatively in terms of the values which emotions reveal. Evolutionary psychology seems to offer an account of the evolution of our “moral sense” (conscience) that dispenses with any reference to objective values. Its apparent elimination of objective values on the grounds of their being unneeded in explanation has led the skeptical writings of J.L. Mackie and Michael Ruse. By contrast, Robert Nozick has resisted this interpretation of evolution (1981) arguing that an evolutionary account of the moral sense can no more dispense with values than an evolutionary account of perception can dispense with perceptual objects objectively present in the world. Axiologists in contemporary ethics are Platonists such as Iris Murdoch and Neo-Kantian theorists such as John Rawls and Robert Nozick.
Tenets of Secular Ethics
Despite the width and diversity of their philosophical views, secular ethicists generally share one or more principles:• Human beings, through their ability to empathize, are capable of determining ethical grounds.• Human beings, through logic and reason, are capable of deriving normative principles of behavior.• Human beings have the moral responsibility to ensure that societies and individuals act based on these ethical principles.• Societies should, if at all possible, advance from a less ethical, less empathy, and unjust form to a more ethical, more empathy and just form.
Many of these tenets are applied in the science of morality, the use of the scientific method to answer moral questions. Various thinkers have framed morality as questions of empirical truth to be explored in a scientific context. The science is related to ethical naturalism, a type of ethical realism.
The problems of axiology fall into four main groups, namely, those concerning (1) the nature of value, (2) the types of value, (3) the criterion of value, and (4) the metaphysical status of value.
(1) The nature of value experience. Is valuation fulfillment of desire (voluntarism: Spinoza, Ehrenfels), pleasure (hedonism: Epicurus, Bentham, Meinong), interest (Perry), preference (Martineau), pure rational will (formalism: Stoics, Kant, Royce), apprehension of tertiary qualities (Santayana), synoptic experience of the unity of personality (personalism: T. H. Green, Bowne), any experience that contributes to enhanced life (evolutionism: Nietzsche), or “the relation of things as means to the end or consequence actually reached” (pragmatism, instrumentalism: Dewey).
(2) The types of value. Most axiologists distinguish between intrinsic (consummatory) values (ends), prized for their own sake, and instrumental (contributory) values (means), which are causes (whether as economic goods or as natural events) of intrinsic values. Most intrinsic values are also instrumental to further value experience; some instrumental values are neutral or even disvalued intrinsically. A few recognized as intrinsic values are the (morally) good, the true, the beautiful, and the holy. Values of play, of work, of association, and of bodily well-being are also acknowledged. Some (with Montague) question whether the true is properly to be regarded as a value, since some truth is disvalued, some neutral; but love of truth, regardless of consequences, seems to establish the value of truth. There is disagreement about whether the holy (religious value) is a unique type (Schleiermacher, Otto), or an attitude toward other values (Kant, Höffding), or a combination of the two (Hocking). There is also disagreement about whether the variety of values is irreducible (pluralism) or whether all values are rationally related in a hierarchy or system (Plato, Hegel, Sorley), in which values interpenetrate or coalesce into a total experience.
(3) The criterion of value. The standard for testing values is influenced by both psychological and logical theory. Hedonists find the standard in the quantity of pleasure derived by the individual (Aristippus) or society (Bentham). Intuitionists appeal to an ultimate insight into preference (Martineau, Brentano). Some idealists recognize an objective system of rational norms or ideals as criterion (Plato, Windelband), while others lay more stress on rational wholeness and coherence (Hegel, Bosanquet, Paton) or inclusiveness (T. H. Green). Naturalists find biological survival or adjustment (Dewey) to be the standard. Despite differences, there is much in common in the results of the application of these criteria.
(4) The metaphysical status of value. What is the relation of values to the facts investigated by natural science (Koehler), of Sein to Sollen (Lotze, Rickert), of human experience of value to reality independent of man (Hegel, Pringle-Pattlson, Spaulding)? There are three main answers: subjectivism (value is entirely dependent on and relative to human experience of it: so most hedonists, naturalists, positivists); logical objectivism (values are logical essences or subsistences, independent of their being known, yet with no existential status or action in reality); metaphysical objectivism (values — or norms or ideals — are integral, objective, and active constituents of the metaphysically real: so theists, absolutists, and certain realists and naturalists like S. Alexander and Wieman).
Axiological atheism can be seen as antitheist and takes a very strong unsympathetic line by saying no being, of any sort, is worthy of the name of god and demanding worship a “moral obligation,” to his values alone which demonstrates an axiological disapproval of their value to be worshipped. No being deserves to be god because they have not provided irrefutable proof nor have done anything to prove separation from the natural world which all beings are part of.
Morality is a biological adaptation. It is likewise natural as fully detailed in the book “The Moral Lives of Animals” where morality or ethical conscience is an evolutionary persuasion seen in how wild elephants walking along a trail stop and spontaneously try to protect and assist a weak and dying fellow elephant. As well as in how laboratory rats, finding other rats caged nearby in distressing circumstances, proceed to rescue them. A chimpanzee in a zoo loses his own life trying to save an unrelated infant who has fallen into a watery moat. The examples above and many others, show that our fellow creatures have powerful impulses toward cooperation, generosity, and fairness. Yet, it is commonly held that we Homo sapiens are the only animals with a moral sense. This rigorous challenges that notion and shows the profound connections—the moral continuum—that link humans to many other species. Understanding the moral lives of animals offers new insight into our own.
Since the god concept in axiological atheism can only be likewise conceived as natural, it deserves no more value than a tree, human, or a black hole, if it was true. If the god concept is outside of nature, it has demonstrated no relevance or worth to the obviously natural world. If the god concept was outside of nature but found relevant over nature, it would be shown to be either willfully guilty for allowing harm or the direct creation of the harm. If the god concept was demonstrated as outsider to the natural world with no ability to manage harm in every stance, it would thus be valueless and undesirable to be given praise and actually shown contempt.
Beyond simply taking the stance that we know, as Atheists, gods do not exist; axiological atheism further strives from just evolution and shows that a creator and designer are not needed to explain life. Axiological atheism ethically critique, value judge analyze, and attack anything that we might be missing out on to remove belief that a god real or concept would be something of value seeing gods as oppressive moral monsters. Axiological atheism can also be seen as a form of antitheist and anti-religionist viewing the negative axiological difference that goddess/gods or religion’s existence makes in a world. Because “fact” symbolizes objectivity and “value” suggests subjectivity, the relationship of value to fact is of fundamental importance in developing any theory of the objectivity of axiological value and of value judgments understands “Axiological atheism” as axiological protest to existence of gods or supreme beings.
Axiological atheism is anti-theist challenging the slandered thinking that god gives or has morality or is a moral being, exposing instead that such a belief is wrongly based on a premise (a hypothesis) that does not stand up to testing. Axiological atheism is anti-religionist challenging the slandered thinking that religion gives or has morality, exposing instead that such a belief is wrongly based on a premise (a hypothesis) that does not stand up to testing.
Axiological atheism is a branch of atheism that is also called constructive atheism: looks to science, humanity, and nature as the only viable source of ethics, morals, and values. These axiological atheists say that humans know what is morally right or wrong, inherently due to evolution which can also be seen in lesser forms of animal life with cognitive abilities demonstrating the rational rejection that its existence is only attributed to the myths of gods or supreme beings creation. Axiological atheism value view goes beyond Nietzsche’s comment that “god is dead” with the ethical opinion that god deserved to die.
Therefore, axiological atheism’s stance on a being in most faiths and the actions claimed of the imaginary being can be attributed to such atrocities, unfairness, injustices, and selfish/self-serving distortion of values. If there were such beings as gods, they are deserving of a life sentence in prison, the death penalty, or at least to be rebuked and shunned as an anti-humanist.
Axiological atheism holds judgmental axiological attitudes towards the existence of gods if there was even such myths, that is to say between an interest in grounds for positioning the existence of god or a god concept as harmful and desires to expose the negative orientations or evaluative reason for believing in god and religion and why they should have no value but do deserve distain. For some unbelievers, an axiological atheism stance would be a drastic position because it sees little necessity of disproving a god’s existence. However, sees no value in a god at all, even if one was true, and devalues the concept so fully that the preference would be that it be non-existent. If one was found to be real, and would wish to do away with the very flawed god concept all together to remove its harm to humanity.
Axiological atheism makes sense mainly on the assumption that believers have a distorted or inadequate concept of god and the violations to a just caring ethical humanity such a concept would be. Axiological atheist inquiry focuses on what a person values, finds desirable, or concern themselves with how a god is wrongly perceived or conceived as positive. Axiology to the philosophy of disbelief asks whether the existence of god (conceived in a particular way) would be a good or a bad thing, welcome or unwelcome. The axiological attitudes toward a god’s existence such as axiological atheism that thinks a god’s existence to be a very bad thing and axiological agnosticism is the indifference toward a god’s existence.
Damien Marie AtHope (axiological atheist) http://damienmarieathope.com/
I am an Axiological Atheist, with a Rationalist Persuasion, who Supports Anarcho-Humanism: http://damienmarieathope.com/2018/01/i-am-an-axiological-atheist-with-a-rationalist-persuasion-who-supports-anarcho-humanism/
Damien Marie AtHope: Axiological Atheist, Anti-theist, Anti-religionist, Secular Humanist. Rationalist, Writer, Artist, Poet, Philosopher, Advocate, Activist, with schooling in Psychology and Sociology as well as an Autodidact in Science, Archeology, Anthropology, and Philosophy. Damien Promotes Science, Realism, Axiology, Liberty, Justice, Ethics, Anarchism, Socialism, Progressivism, Liberalism, Philosophy, Psychology, Archaeology, and Anthropology; advocating for Sexual, Gender, Child, Secular, LGBTQIA+, Race, Class Rights, and Equality.
Damien Marie AtHope’s Writer Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/DamienMarieAtHope/
Damien Marie AtHope’s Personal Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100012093571404Axiological
Again, Axiological Atheism, can be thought to involve ethical/value theory reasoned and moral argument driven apatheism, ignosticism, atheism, anti-theism, anti-religionism, secularism, and humanism. Roughly understood axiological atheism = Strong Disbelief as well as Strong Secularism and Humanism.
Axiological Atheism Explained: http://damienmarieathope.com/2015/10/30/axiological-atheism-explained/
Axiological Atheist Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AxiologicalAtheist
Here is Damien Marie AtHope’s blog on the evolution of religion and the memes used are my art: http://damienmarieathope.com/2018/01/understanding-religion-evolution-animism-totemism-shamanism-paganism-progressed-organized-religion/
Here is Damien Marie AtHope’s atheist humanist art: “AtHope Wicked Designs” https://www.facebook.com/AtHope-Wicked-Designs-287913388398828/
Here is my external pages or content: Facebook Witter Page, My YouTube, My Linkedin, Twitter: @AthopeMarie, Instagram: damienathope, Personal Facebook Page, Secondary Personal Facebook Page, Main Atheist Facebook Page, Secondary Atheist Facebook Page, Facebook Leftist Political Page, Facebook Group: Atheist for Non-monogamy, Facebook Group: (HARP) Humanism, Atheism, Rationalism, & Philosophy and My Email: email@example.com