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I have my own definition of conservative and progressive and it really can jump the lines of left wing or right wing in the political sense. I look to the linguistic roots of the words.
I see progressive and someone who believes in "progress", also known as change. I see conservative and someone who wants to "conserve" the status quo. Change can often be chaotic and disrupting, so there is a natural resistance to it. It is entirely possible to have someone conservative on the left-wing of the political spectrum, someone who is left but does not want progress or change to happen because it is comfortable to remain in the current status quo. Consequently, it is possible to have someone on the right being a progressive. My example here would be the Futurists and Italian Fascist Party who were indeed looking back at Roman aesthetic but progresses into the future (no pun intended) for a change, no matter how reactionary that change may be.
Personally, I identify myself as a Leftist, and a pragmatic one at that as opposed to dogmatic.
I came to this idea with the example of the artists and architects of the Bauhaus movement in the 20s. How I came to that conclusion is probably a diary rather than a comment.
Secondly, I also personally believe the religious issue is over blown. I best identify as a Deist (and lapsed Freemason behind on my dues), who believes in a Deity who works through physical laws of nature in the order of the universe in a hands-off approach. I also believe that human being have added a lot of superstition to ritual and religion, especially since all religions have basically the same message, once you take away the pomp and self-rightiousness: "hey, wouldn't it be great if we could be nice to one another for a change". This also conforms to natural laws of survival and survival of the fittest of Darwin. That would also be an entire diary to go into further.
Now, I had a very productive conversation with a firm scientific atheist over at big orange. I firmly stated that my belief, which is rooted so deep within my being that I don't even know where it comes from, was entirely irrational. There was no logical basis for it and no way to prove or disprove it.
In fact, this is the way it should be. Kirkegaard's Fear and Trembling is probably the best treatise on the nature of faith. By definition it must be irrational and absurd (absurdity meaning here beyond the realm of reason and fact).
That is how I define my faith, if you would call it that. It's part of my being and no intellectual exercises will allow me to exorcise this very primal part of me.
However, once I defined my conception of faith, once I admitted that it was irrational and that I did not believe or condone forcing irrational thought on others, that atheist complimented me with the greatest of respect.
In this sense, I have never been attacked for being deluded with my beliefs, just the opposite.
I think it depends on how the faith and religion is presented in conversation on whether there is rejection or acceptance. I don't believe anyone here at ET will reject or deride me for for this comment of my views even if they do not hold them themselves.
"Schiller sprach zu Goethe, Steck in dem Arsch die Flöte!
Goethe sagte zu Schiller, Mein Arsch ist kein Triller!"
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