I thought I’d explore the concept of conviction, and I have been largely inspired by a series of comments (see this post of mine) from one ‘Spartan Theist’. I can only imagine what long-time blogger Spartan Atheist makes of that, but then, they say imitation is the highest form of flattery, except ‘Spartan Theist’ was clearly indulging in trolling.
Conviction is a powerful thing. To have conviction is to be confident, to be sure, to be certain of one’s positions and arguments. That is conviction’s power, and its flaw. Absolute certainty can lead to justifications for all sorts of things, without remorse or regret, as ‘Spartan Theist’ demonstrated.
They believed themselves to be utterly right, insisting they spoke truth, and they were so utterly convinced of their superiority that they managed to be thoroughly conceited and arrogant. To quote from their first comment:
One should have broad-vision and intelligence to foresee the result of such activities. we theist people are intelligent than you because we follow the commandments of God. You people are so much engrossed in sex life intoxication and meat eating that you don’t have intelligence to foresee the result of such an act.
Remarkable isn’t it? That conviction leads ‘Spartan Theist’ to believe they are smarter than I am, and that I (and people like me) are not intelligent. That’s obviously rude, but it is a demonstration of something else: pride, and pride is as we know, considered a sin.
Proverbs 11:2-18 ERV
Proud and boastful people will be shamed, but wisdom stays with those who are modest and humble. Good people are guided by their honesty, but crooks who lie and cheat will ruin themselves.
I have no doubt that ‘Spartan Theist’ will argue they are merely being honest, but in their second comment, they demonstrated themselves to be a liar, casting doubt upon their intentions:
Smiles, I’m not here to convince or insult your intelligence because you are not going to accept good principles anyway.
If ‘Spartan Theist’ is not trying to convince me of anything, why did they then produce numerous comments arguing their ‘case’? And any reasonable person would find their boasting of intelligence and their final statement from their first comment to be an insult. So clearly, ‘Spartan Theist’ was not being honest about their intentions. The last time I checked, dishonesty was not considered a good Christian character trait, yet here we have someone so utterly convinced they are right, so full of righteous conviction, that they cannot even see how their behaviour is ignoble. What we are getting from ‘Spartan Theist’ is posturing, and as you’ll see from the comments, they grow increasingly rude and petulant as things go along.
You may be wondering why I place parentheses’ around ‘Spartan Theist’, that’s because I am not at all convinced they are a newcomer. The arguments are remarkably similar to Silence of Mind’s aggressive approach, and I have my suspicions that ‘Spartan Theist’ is a sock-puppet account. I can’t prove that, and the IP addresses don’t match, but that doesn’t rule out a VPN. I can only give ‘Spartan Theist’ the benefit of the doubt, for now.
Sometimes, there is nothing wrong with having conviction, but sometimes, being so close-minded to any opinions that contradict your own will only make you look ignorant, and foolish, and prideful.