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Old 06-10-2008, 07:11 PM   #41
Rev7
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Originally Posted by Achilles View Post
Why do you believe in christianity? Thus far you have just as much evidence for that as you do these other things. Is your selection arbitrary?
Why do I believe in Christianity? I believe that Jesus is real, and that he died for my sins, and the sins of the world on the cross. I also believe that He rose from the dead.

How exactly can I have "just as much evidence for that as you do these other things"? I am agrueing against these other things.

No, my selection is not arbitrary.

Quote:
Because jesus didn't appear.
So, if you ask someone to do something via a telephone, you have to see this person appear to make sure that they actually did what you asked?

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"Faith" is not a good argument. If you know that "faith" is required for other things, then "faith" doesn't seem like a particularly rigorous way of determining truth.
That is what you think. I certainly think that faith is 'rigorous'. I think that what I am doing has rigor. I am trying to convince you that He is real. I think that YOU think that it is more of a joke. At least I am trying. That is all that I can do. That takes faith, and rigor. I think that many others would think the same.

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It was a question. You're free to answer however you'd like.
Oh, I am sorry. I didn't see it as a question originally. To answer that question, no I will not pray to an 'invisible fairiy".


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Your point wasn't much of a point
Okay.....

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Since this isn't Kavar's I think I'm still allowed to say "yes".

..at least with regards to their beliefs.
And how exactly would Kavar's change your opinion.

I think that many people would think that your view is irrational.

Quote:
What is your evidence? If you believe this is true then what is your source of contention with the author's video?
Okay then. I know that Jesus can/has appeared to people (I know that has already been stated). I am not diputing that. I never disputed that.



Quote:
Being able to figure out what someone else is going to say before they say it is a good skill to have. The best way to apply it is to not say what you were going to if their response isn't something you can counter.
Thank you.

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If you are contesting what the author says then you are contesting what the bible says. If you are not contesting what the bible says, then you cannot contest what the author says. Unless you can somehow demonstrate that what the author says skews what it actually said in the bible. Which you have opted not to do up to this point.
I have already stated what I think to be is 'skewed'.
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Originally Posted by Rev7
Well, I believe that this is His presense. An "annointing"? As for the anything part, that doesn't necsicarily mean that he has to 'grant' it.
You have also stated that you think that what I said was an "excuse".


Thanks for your time.

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Old 06-10-2008, 07:35 PM   #42
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No takers on the 10 questions that every intelligent Christian must answer, so perhaps we'll have better luck with this one:
That's untrue; I answered in Kavar's; http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost....&postcount=383



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Old 06-10-2008, 07:53 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
Why do I believe in Christianity? I believe that Jesus is real, and that he died for my sins, and the sins of the world on the cross. I also believe that He rose from the dead.
That doesn't really address why you believe those things...which seemed to me the point of the question.
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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
No, my selection is not arbitrary.
On what criteria did you make your selection then? Is there more evidence to support Christianity over Judaism or Islam? (Or any other myriad of options...)
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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
So, if you ask someone to do something via a telephone, you have to see this person appear to make sure that they actually did what you asked?
If I asked them to come over to my house to eat pizza and drink beer, then...yes. Otherwise I can be fairly confident that they did not do what I asked.
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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
And how exactly would Kavar's change your opinion.

I think that many people would think that your view is irrational.
I very much doubt his actual opinion would change, he simply would not voice it in Kavar's because they are touchy about his word choice there.



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Old 06-10-2008, 07:53 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
Why do I believe in Christianity? I believe that Jesus is real, and that he died for my sins, and the sins of the world on the cross. I also believe that He rose from the dead.
But believing something doesn't make it true. I can believe that Monica Bellucci fantasizes about me, but that doesn't mean that it happens.

I might specify Monica Bellucci in my example because I find her particularly attractive and I want to believe that it's true. That belief might even cause me to feel like the irresistible hunk o' burnin' love that I am, but even that won't make it true.

Therefore, as I've stated repeatedly, having a belief/faith about something doesn't tell me anything about how real or true it is.

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How exactly can I have "just as much evidence for that as you do these other things"? I am agrueing against these other things.
There is zero evidence. Therefore the quantity of evidence for them is all the same (i.e. none).

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
No, my selection is not arbitrary.
I'll take your word for it, but you'll still need to show me how this isn't the case.

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
So, if you ask someone to do something via a telephone, you have to see this person appear to make sure that they actually did what you asked?
This example is not even close to what we're discussing. The bible says that jesus is among us. Introducing the "other end of a phone" scenario is disingenuous.

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
That is what you think. I certainly think that faith is 'rigorous'. I think that what I am doing has rigor. I am trying to convince you that He is real. I think that YOU think that it is more of a joke. At least I am trying. That is all that I can do. That takes faith, and rigor. I think that many others would think the same.
Sir, "faith" is an argument for jesus just as much as it is an argument for islam, paganism, or any other diametrically opposed belief system that you wish to think up. Arguing that faith is an intellectually rigorous reason for accepting christianity is arguing that it is also an intellectually rigorous reason for believing in invisible pink unicorns and the flying spaghetti monster. Do you accept them as being real as well?

If not, then by the very same logic you must accept that faith is not a good reason for believing in jesus or god either.

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
Oh, I am sorry. I didn't see it as a question originally. To answer that question, no I will not pray to an 'invisible fairiy".
Why not?

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
And how exactly would Kavar's change your opinion.
It's wouldn't, however there are certain words that I'm not allowed to use there. "Irrational" is one of them. "Delusion" is another.

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
I think that many people would think that your view is irrational.
And I would welcome them to discuss that with me any time they would like.

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
Okay then. I know that Jesus can/has appeared to people (I know that has already been stated). I am not diputing that. I never disputed that.
Okay then, if you follow the steps in the video, why does he not appear?

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
Thank you.
You're welcome

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Originally Posted by Rev7 View Post
I have already stated what I think to be is 'skewed'.
<snip>
You have also stated that you think that what I said was an "excuse".
That's because it was

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Originally Posted by jonathan7 View Post
That's untrue; I answered in Kavar's; http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost....&postcount=383
No my friend, you 100% did not. Putting words on a page is not the same thing as answering the question.

Example.
Question: Achilles, what is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Response: I could really use a nap.

I posted a reply. There were words exchanged. I did not answer the question.
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Old 06-10-2008, 07:57 PM   #45
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No my friend, you 100% did not. Putting words on a page is not the same thing as answering the question.

Example.
Question: Achilles, what is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Response: I could really use a nap.

I posted a reply. There were words exchanged. I did not answer the question.
You said 'takers' I took the 10 questions and put forth my answers



"Love is the only reality and it is not a mere sentiment. It is the ultimate truth that lies at the heart of creation." - Rabindranath Tagore

"Many a doctrine is like a window pane. We see truth through it but it divides us from truth." - Kahlil Gibran
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Old 06-10-2008, 08:00 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by jonathan7 View Post
You said 'takers' I took the 10 questions and put forth my answers
I think you and I are going to quibble of word meanings here, my friend. I acknowledge that you did, in fact, post a reply. You did not however answer any of the questions.

Since no one was able to answer any of the questions, there were in fact no takers.
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Old 06-10-2008, 08:06 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by Achilles View Post
I think you and I are going to quibble of word meanings here, my friend.
Yup

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Originally Posted by Achilles View Post
I acknowledge that you did, in fact, post a reply. You did not however answer any of the questions.

Since no one was able to answer any of the questions, there were in fact no takers.
I think we are going quibble here, I answered the questions, you disagreed with those answers; but disagreement over an answer does not mean I didn't offer an answer. It means that you didn't think my answer was correct.

As such I think your analogy is flawed;

Quote:
Originally Posted by A
Question: Achilles, what is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Response: I could really use a nap.
One of the following I would venture is a better analogy;

Q 1+1=?
A 11

Q 1+1=?
A 2

Take Care, I only spotted you were reviewing this thread as was sending you a message, I'm heading back to my usual hang out of Knights...



"Love is the only reality and it is not a mere sentiment. It is the ultimate truth that lies at the heart of creation." - Rabindranath Tagore

"Many a doctrine is like a window pane. We see truth through it but it divides us from truth." - Kahlil Gibran
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Old 06-10-2008, 08:09 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by jonathan7 View Post
I think we are going quibble here, I answered the questions, you disagreed with those answers; but disagreement over an answer does not mean I didn't offer an answer. It means that you didn't think my answer was correct.
I disagreed that they were answers, not with what they said (although I disagree with that too ).

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As such I think your analogy is flawed;
One of the following I would venture is a better analogy;
No, that's an example of getting an answer wrong. Bit different
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Old 06-10-2008, 08:15 PM   #49
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No, that's an example of getting an answer wrong. Bit different
A wrong answer is what is at the heart of the matter though, as one of us is wrong; I shall however have another stab at the 10 questions over in Kavar's, I'll address this video in it too.

Anways, thats officially my last post in this neighbourhood, I spotted some people eyeing up my lightsaber, so I'm outta here



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"Many a doctrine is like a window pane. We see truth through it but it divides us from truth." - Kahlil Gibran
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Old 06-10-2008, 10:40 PM   #50
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That doesn't really address why you believe those things...which seemed to me the point of the question.
On what criteria did you make your selection then? Is there more evidence to support Christianity over Judaism or Islam? (Or any other myriad of options...)
Sorry! I am a little tired. I guess that I will start over then. I want to point out that I am a non-denominational Christian. I don't go to 'church' very much, but I read the Bible a lot, and try my best to live by the Word of God. Why not Judaism or Islam for example, I don't agree with all* that is taught in those religions. I am simply a Christian. That is all that I think that I can say on that part....

(*)= it certainly ranges!

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Originally Posted by ET Warrior View Post
If I asked them to come over to my house to eat pizza and drink beer, then...yes. Otherwise I can be fairly confident that they did not do what I asked.
That is you. Others will answer differently.
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Originally Posted by ET Warrior View Post
I very much doubt his actual opinion would change, he simply would not voice it in Kavar's because they are touchy about his word choice there.
Okay.
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But believing something doesn't make it true. I can believe that Monica Bellucci fantasizes about me, but that doesn't mean that it happens.

<snip>

Therefore, as I've stated repeatedly, having a belief/faith about something doesn't tell me anything about how real or true it is.
I guess that you could say that about you believeing that Jesus isn't real.



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I'll take your word for it, but you'll still need to show me how this isn't the case.
I think that we might not be on the same page. What do you mean by "is your selection arbitrary"?

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This example is not even close to what we're discussing. The bible says that jesus is among us. Introducing the "other end of a phone" scenario is disingenuous.
Okay...
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Sir, "faith" is an argument for jesus just as much as it is an argument for islam, paganism, or any other diametrically opposed belief system that you wish to think up. Arguing that faith is an intellectually rigorous reason for accepting christianity is arguing that it is also an intellectually rigorous reason for believing in invisible pink unicorns and the flying spaghetti monster. Do you accept them as being real as well?
They could be. I (probably you too) don't think that they are real, though.

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If not, then by the very same logic you must accept that faith is not a good reason for believing in jesus or god either.
Well Achilles, Christianity, as well as all of those other religions, is a fairly faith based religion. I don't quite know if you understand this.
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Why not?
Well, I know for myself that they would be a false idol.

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Originally Posted by Achilles View Post
It's wouldn't, however there are certain words that I'm not allowed to use there. "Irrational" is one of them. "Delusion" is another.
Okay. Thank you for informing me.
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And I would welcome them to discuss that with me any time they would like.
Some of us are already doing that.
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Okay then, if you follow the steps in the video, why does he not appear?
I am sure that you would view it as another "excuse" that this man has made.



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Originally Posted by Achilles View Post
That's because it was
Again, I have stated my thoughts on that.



I think that I will have to leave this discussion pretty soon. It seems to most that my views are irrational and irrelevent, so I don't really see the need to continue discussing this.

Thank you for the discussion though. I happen to enjoy them.

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Old 06-11-2008, 01:08 AM   #51
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Sorry! I am a little tired. I guess that I will start over then. I want to point out that I am a non-denominational Christian. I don't go to 'church' very much, but I read the Bible a lot, and try my best to live by the Word of God. Why not Judaism or Islam for example, I don't agree with all* that is taught in those religions. I am simply a Christian. That is all that I think that I can say on that part....

(*)= it certainly ranges!
So are you saying that you agree with all of christianity?

Also, how extensively have you studied these other religions? Read the qu'ran or the old testament? Attended their mosques and synagogues?

If not, then I think you understand what it means to select something arbitarily.

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That is you. Others will answer differently.
Your arguments are becoming increasingly slippery. At some point this may threaten your credibility and some people may decide that you have nothing honest to contribute to the dialog.

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I guess that you could say that about you believeing that Jesus isn't real.
You've completely ignored the point in order to introduce an unrelated argument.
Acknowledging that there is no evidence for something does not require one to hold a belief. There is no evidence for the existence of a man named jesus. That isn't something that I choose to believe. That is reality.

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I think that we might not be on the same page. What do you mean by "is your selection arbitrary"?
From Merriam-Webster:
Quote:
3 a: based on or determined by individual preference or convenience rather than by necessity or the intrinsic nature of something
You've selected to be a christian because it is convenient or because you prefer it, not because it is true or because you've determined that it is better than the existing alternatives by some rigorous process of elimination.

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They could be. I (probably you too) don't think that they are real, though.
Why not? You have just as much evidence for your religion as these yet you accept one but dismiss the others. You recognize that every other belief system is silly on some level...except the one that you call your own.

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Well Achilles, Christianity, as well as all of those other religions, is a fairly faith based religion. I don't quite know if you understand this.
I understand it perfectly. The point that I keep raising and that you are doing an excellent job of consistently ignoring is that doesn't make it true.

Faith is required for all of them. That means the one you believe in is not special.

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Well, I know for myself that they would be a false idol.
This is why theists get such a bad rap.

You just acknowledged that the other religious figures could be real. You acknowledge that all religions require faith. But yet when I ask you a simple question, you profess to know something that you just got finished admitting that you couldn't know.

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Some of us are already doing that.
I promise you that no one has even come close to starting.

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I am sure that you would view it as another "excuse" that this man has made.
Yes, if you offer up another excuse, then I will acknowledge it as such. You either have an answer or you do not. I suspect that we both know that you do not. My fear is that you will spend more time finding a way to ignore that than considering what that means.

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Again, I have stated my thoughts on that.
Indeed but opinions are cheap to produce. Arguments have worth.

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I think that I will have to leave this discussion pretty soon. It seems to most that my views are irrational and irrelevent, so I don't really see the need to continue discussing this.
I'm saddened to hear you say that. I'll continue to hold out hope for you anyway

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Thank you for the discussion though. I happen to enjoy them.
Take care until next time.
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Old 06-11-2008, 12:03 PM   #52
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That is you. Others will answer differently.
You know people who would call friends to come over and hang out, and if they never saw them would actually believe that said friends came over?



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Old 06-11-2008, 01:49 PM   #53
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Perhaps if you drank a lot of the beer before they arrived?

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Old 06-12-2008, 01:24 PM   #54
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Bleh, religious debates. What I really don't get is, why are a lot of Atheists dead set on proving religions(mostly from what I've seen Christianity) wrong? As long as the religion is not being forced on them, then leave it alone. My opinion is the same towards Christians and people of other religions. Beleive what you want to beleive, but do NOT force it on anyone that does not want it.

I was raised Roman Catholic. In the Catholic faith you are somewhat supposed to convert others in order to "save them." Now I can understand this a bit. I could understand converting a person who has no faith and is not sure of what they beleive in. However, when you try to convert people who already beleive something different, that's where you should stop. When I was younger I would try to convert my father, who is an Atheist. Now that my ideas have changed my father and I can have simple discussions about religion. We both beleive that people should beleive whatever they want to beleive and as long as it doesn't harm anyone else then it's fine.

After my confirmation in the Catholic church, I started to not beleive in it. I thought the whole concept of one God wasn't quite right for an entire universe. In a way, I became a Pagan and then an Atheist. I do beleive that Jesus existed. I also beleive that Muhammad and Buddha existed. Beleive what you want to beleive, but mostly try to keep it to yourself. There is no reason in trying to prove someone's religion wrong or right.

Also, I thought that video was just stupid. I've heard better arguements.




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Old 06-12-2008, 01:42 PM   #55
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Bleh, religious debates. What I really don't get is, why are a lot of Atheists dead set on proving religions(mostly from what I've seen Christianity) wrong?
Because no one holds their beliefs in a vacuum. What other think and believe can and does have an impact on all of us.

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Beleive what you want to beleive, but do NOT force it on anyone that does not want it.
When milions of people go into a voting booth and vote against individual rights such as abortion or life-saving scientific research such as embryonic stem cell research because of their religious beliefs isn't that "forcing it on others"?

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I was raised Roman Catholic. In the Catholic faith you are somewhat supposed to convert others in order to "save them." Now I can understand this a bit. I could understand converting a person who has no faith and is not sure of what they beleive in. However, when you try to convert people who already beleive something different, that's where you should stop.
Please help me understand how this is not a double-standard. It's okay to try to convert those without a religious belief, however those without a religious belief are somehow wrong for wanting point out that such beliefs are irrational?

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There is no reason in trying to prove someone's religion wrong or right.
I wholeheartedly disagree for the reasons that I provided above and more.

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I've heard better arguements.
As have I, but you always have to consider your audience when making your case.
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Old 06-12-2008, 01:56 PM   #56
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Anything anywhere is always going to have an impact on others. What you need to ask yourself is "Is this impact negative?" In a way voting could be considered forcing beleifs upon others, but you are trying to tie religion with politics. There is a separation of Church and State which must be recognized. Vote against abortion if you feel it is truly murder, morally wrong and all those other arguements, not because your church told you it is wrong.

I didn't state that it was okay to want to convert those without a religious beleif. Just that I don't find it that wrong to convert those who have NO BELEIF. I think education is sacred and some is better than none, even if it is possibly wrong and biased. For me having some education eventually led me into researching other religions. I may not beleive those religions, but I still like to understand them and know why they beleive what they do. I didn't mean that it is okay to convert those who do not beleive in a God or gods. Them not beleiving in a God or gods is their beleif right there. That there is no God. I don't think that some Christian, Muslim or Jew should come up to you and try to change your views and I don't think that you should do it to others.

Just to avoid any miscommunication, I am not saying that you do in fact try and change others views.




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Old 06-12-2008, 02:15 PM   #57
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Anything anywhere is always going to have an impact on others. What you need to ask yourself is "Is this impact negative?" In a way voting could be considered forcing beleifs upon others, but you are trying to tie religion with politics.
I'm doing that? Hmmm.

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There is a separation of Church and State which must be recognized.
People voting their religious beliefs doesn't apply to constitutional restrictions placed on the government.

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Vote against abortion if you feel it is truly murder, morally wrong and all those other arguements, not because your church told you it is wrong.
It would be nice if all people were that rigorous with their thinking. I have very little reason to believe that even a statistically significant number of us are.

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I didn't state that it was okay to want to convert those without a religious beleif. Just that I don't find it that wrong to convert those who have NO BELEIF. I think education is sacred and some is better than none, even if it is possibly wrong and biased. For me having some education eventually led me into researching other religions. I may not beleive those religions, but I still like to understand them and know why they beleive what they do. I didn't mean that it is okay to convert those who do not beleive in a God or gods. Them not beleiving in a God or gods is their beleif right there.
You're contradicting yourself.

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That there is no God. I don't think that some Christian, Muslim or Jew should come up to you and try to change your views and I don't think that you should do it to others.
I appreciate you wanting to share your counsel, however until you can present an argument that doesn't contradict itself, I'm afraid I won't be able to find your case persuasive.

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Just to avoid any miscommunication, I am not saying that you do in fact try and change others views.
I challenge them with the intent to change. I don't think I can deny that.

But you are correct that I do not try to force others to one particular belief or another.

Take care.
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Old 06-12-2008, 02:35 PM   #58
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I don't want to get on your bad side or anything, but it appears to me that you simply wrote off some of the things I said by calling them contradictory. I will admit that I could have worded them better. I will do that now.

Religion is in it's own sense a form of education. It is certainly biased and is quite possibly wrong. I would not see the harm in educating someone who has no knowledge of the subject as long as you educate them beyond what you beleive. I wouldn't say it is wrong for a Christian, Muslim or Jew to try and convert someone who has no knowledge of the issue, but they also should give the other religions and ideas a fair chance and thus allowing the person to make his or her own decision on what they beleive. Of course most people probably could not educate this said person beyond what they beleive because of lack of knowledge and understanding.

You are correct that the people can still vote towards their religious beleifs, but what are you trying to prove? Disproving a religion will stop this? No, that won't work. They just need to be educated of the others perspectives and keep open minds. My mother is a hardcore devout Catholic woman. I really dislike this. I have gotten in numerous arguements with her about other religions and ideas. She is very conservative and is against abortion basically just because her church is.

People need to be educated from all perspectives and all the different viewpoints, so that they can decide for themselves.




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Old 06-12-2008, 03:26 PM   #59
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Because no one holds their beliefs in a vacuum. What other think and believe can and does have an impact on all of us.

When milions of people go into a voting booth and vote against individual rights such as abortion or life-saving scientific research such as embryonic stem cell research because of their religious beliefs isn't that "forcing it on others"?
Extremely good point. Thank you for posting it, Achilles.

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I don't want to get on your bad side or anything, but it appears to me that you simply wrote off some of the things I said by calling them contradictory. I will admit that I could have worded them better. I will do that now.
Hmm. If you're making contradictory statements it kind of negates your argument. You can't have it both ways. You can't fault Achlles for not arguing back both sides.

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Old 06-12-2008, 03:30 PM   #60
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Extremely good point. Thank you for posting it, Achilles.



Hmm. If you're making contradictory statements it kind of negates your argument. You can't have it both ways. You can't fault Achlles for not arguing back both sides.

_EW_

I agree, but it wasn't contradictory to me. That's why I tried to put it in better words. He didn't argue the side, he just called it contradictory, so I tried to clear things up. I hope it makes more sense now.




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Old 06-12-2008, 04:15 PM   #61
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I don't want to get on your bad side or anything, but it appears to me that you simply wrote off some of the things I said by calling them contradictory. I will admit that I could have worded them better. I will do that now.
Let's have a look:
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Just that I don't find it that wrong to convert those who have NO BELEIF.
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Them not beleiving in a God or gods is their beleif right there.
If it is wrong to try to change someone's belief and if the position that there is no god is a belief (a premise I strongly disagree with), then trying to convert someone that believes that there is no god contradicts your first position that trying to convert someone that already has a belief is wrong. I hope that helps to clarify.

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Religion is in it's own sense a form of education. It is certainly biased and is quite possibly wrong. I would not see the harm in educating someone who has no knowledge of the subject as long as you educate them beyond what you beleive.
So when you attempt to convert non-christians you make sure to include equal time for mormonism, scientology, satan worship, each of the pagan pantheons, ancestor worship, buddhism, the flying spaghetti monster, invisible pink unicorns, fairies, druidism, etc?

Or do you spend most of your time talking about how great your religious tradition is?

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I wouldn't say it is wrong for a Christian, Muslim or Jew to try and convert someone who has no knowledge of the issue, but they also should give the other religions and ideas a fair chance and thus allowing the person to make his or her own decision on what they beleive.
So would you say that parents that raise their children within a specific religious tradition are acting inappropriately? Considering that children are especially vulnerable because they have not yet developed the critical thinking skills necessary to adequately question what they are being told, might you say that they are being exploited?

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Of course most people probably could not educate this said person beyond what they beleive because of lack of knowledge and understanding.
Indeed.

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You are correct that the people can still vote towards their religious beleifs, but what are you trying to prove?
That people need to use reason, not superstitious wishful thinking, to make important decisions.

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Disproving a religion will stop this?
Note: no one can "disprove" religion as it cannot be tested. Therefore the question, as it is worded, is not useful.

To the spirit of the question: Yes, I absolutely believe that foregoing irrational thinking in order to adopt rational thinking will absolutey result in rational decisions. No more "garbage in, garbage out", as it were.

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No, that won't work. They just need to be educated of the others perspectives and keep open minds. My mother is a hardcore devout Catholic woman. I really dislike this. I have gotten in numerous arguements with her about other religions and ideas. She is very conservative and is against abortion basically just because her church is.
The defense rests, Your Honor

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People need to be educated from all perspectives and all the different viewpoints, so that they can decide for themselves.
Indeed they do, but we also need to have a culture that just says no to BS.

The following is one of my favorite quotes from the author Sam Harris:
Quote:
The president of the United States has claimed, on more than one occasion, to be in dialogue with God. If he said that he was talking to God through his hairdryer, this would precipitate a national emergency. I fail to see how the addition of a hairdryer makes the claim more ridiculous or offensive.
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Extremely good point. Thank you for posting it, Achilles.
My pleasure. Thank you for the kudos.

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I agree, but it wasn't contradictory to me. That's why I tried to put it in better words. He didn't argue the side, he just called it contradictory, so I tried to clear things up. I hope it makes more sense now.
My apologies. One of my many faults is that I tend to assume that if I point out an error in reasoning that the person I am conversing with will be able to see how the reasoning is wrong if I stop to point it out. Hopefully by pointing out the two conflicting statements and expanding on how they contradict one another I have helped to alleiviate any confusion.

Please feel free to ask me to slow down and try again if ever I say something that doesn't make sense. I'll do my best to explain what I'm saying.

Thanks.
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Old 06-12-2008, 04:39 PM   #62
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Achilles, to help with this "debate" look up and watch the movie "Before the Harvest" You might like it...


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I don't want to get my hopes up, but it's like the planets are aligning or something.
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Old 06-12-2008, 04:49 PM   #63
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Achilles, to help with this "debate" look up and watch the movie "Before the Harvest" You might like it...
???
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:01 PM   #64
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Achilles, to help with this "debate" look up and watch the movie "Before the Harvest" You might like it...


I hope you don't actually mean that article... and there are no entries with that title in IMDB, either.

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Old 06-12-2008, 05:10 PM   #65
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That article was the only thing Google gave me

(I also checked IMDb and found nothing).
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:30 PM   #66
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Let's have a look:
If it is wrong to try to change someone's belief and if the position that there is no god is a belief (a premise I strongly disagree with), then trying to convert someone that believes that there is no god contradicts your first position that trying to convert someone that already has a belief is wrong. I hope that helps to clarify.

So when you attempt to convert non-christians you make sure to include equal time for mormonism, scientology, satan worship, each of the pagan pantheons, ancestor worship, buddhism, the flying spaghetti monster, invisible pink unicorns, fairies, druidism, etc?

Or do you spend most of your time talking about how great your religious tradition is?

So would you say that parents that raise their children within a specific religious tradition are acting inappropriately? Considering that children are especially vulnerable because they have not yet developed the critical thinking skills necessary to adequately question what they are being told, might you say that they are being exploited?

Indeed.

That people need to use reason, not superstitious wishful thinking, to make important decisions.

Note: no one can "disprove" religion as it cannot be tested. Therefore the question, as it is worded, is not useful.

To the spirit of the question: Yes, I absolutely believe that foregoing irrational thinking in order to adopt rational thinking will absolutey result in rational decisions. No more "garbage in, garbage out", as it were.

The defense rests, Your Honor

Indeed they do, but we also need to have a culture that just says no to BS.

The following is one of my favorite quotes from the author Sam Harris:


My pleasure. Thank you for the kudos.

My apologies. One of my many faults is that I tend to assume that if I point out an error in reasoning that the person I am conversing with will be able to see how the reasoning is wrong if I stop to point it out. Hopefully by pointing out the two conflicting statements and expanding on how they contradict one another I have helped to alleiviate any confusion.

Please feel free to ask me to slow down and try again if ever I say something that doesn't make sense. I'll do my best to explain what I'm saying.

Thanks.

I agree with a lot of what you have said. You still don't seem to be understanding what I said about converting though. I do not think that anyone should try and convert Atheists because I view Atheism as a religion. The person has chosen to beleive in no God or gods and they don't need anyone coming up to them and saying "Do you accept Jesus Christ as your savior?"

I was saying that I wouldn't see it as wrong to try and convert someone who has no beleif at all. As in someone who has never really given religion much of a thought. That way they can take what they hear and do as they wish with it. It may lead them into following that religion or into researching others.

I would not know about converting non-christians because I do not do it. I also don't think I would approve of Christians coming up to me and trying to convert me. I respect what they beleive and all I ask is that they respect what I beleive. If I did try to convert and or educate people on a religion then I think I would try to cover Mormonism, Scientology, fairies etc.

The parents raising their children is tricky. I would say that I am partially thankful for being raised Catholic because it lead me to research other beleifs, to keep an open mind and to learn more. I try to keep an open mind on that what I beleive may or may not be wrong.




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Old 06-12-2008, 05:43 PM   #67
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You still don't seem to be understanding what I said about converting though.
I think I do understand, but that does not mean that I agree.

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I do not think that anyone should try and convert Atheists because I view Atheism as a religion.
Okay, that's fine, however that does not mean that it is. It is legally categorized as such by the Federal goverment for the purposes of religious discrimination.

However atheism has no traditions, no centeral tenants, no dogma, no places of worship, no holidays/days of observance, et cetera.

Everything that we could use to identify something as a religion is completely missing from atheism.

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The person has chosen to beleive in no God or gods and they don't need anyone coming up to them and saying "Do you accept Jesus Christ as your savior?"
I completely agree, but I'm not sure what this has to do with your initial critique of my being critical of religion.

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I was saying that I wouldn't see it as wrong to try and convert someone who has no beleif at all.
Because your categorizing a lack of belief in a god or gods as a belief, I'm having difficult comprehending what "someone who has no belief at all" would look like. Babies is about the best thing I can come up with.

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As in someone who has never really given religion much of a thought.
Would they be wearing a funny hat or maybe a special shirt or something to help us identify who they are? How would you know who it's safe to talk to and who it isn't?

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I would not know about converting non-christians because I do not do it.
Didn't you say earlier that you tried to convert your father?

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I also don't think I would approve of Christians coming up to me and trying to convert me. I respect what they beleive and all I ask is that they respect what I beleive. If I did try to convert and or educate people on a religion then I think I would try to cover Mormonism, Scientology, fairies etc.
Kudos for your objectivity, sir. Unfortuantely I think you would agree that a vast majority of your fellow human beings would not be so enlightened.

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The parents raising their children is tricky. I would say that I am partially thankful for being raised Catholic because it lead me to research other beleifs, to keep an open mind and to learn more.
Do you have a more definitive answer?
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:55 PM   #68
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Ah, you are right. I tried to convert my father a very long time ago. I do no such thing to anyone anymore. I don't know how to identify those who "have no religion." I just remember a while back some kids on my bus were debating religions and when someone asked this one boy what he beleived he said "I don't know. I haven't thought about it much." I guess the only way those who try to convert people would know would be by talking to people.

I do agree that most human beings would not be as enlightened.

Sorry, I don't have a more definitive answer about the parents. Maybe one day when I have my own children and if you're still around here, I will have a better answer.




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Old 06-12-2008, 06:16 PM   #69
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Sorry, I don't have a more definitive answer about the parents. Maybe one day when I have my own children and if you're still around here, I will have a better answer.
You don't have to wait. You can start thinking about that now so that you don't have to make up your mind then.

You seem to feel pretty strongly that no one's views should be pushed on others. Why shouldn't that same consideration be extended toward children?

It is possible that you can teach your children to be polite, respectful, moral, people without having the threaten them with hell or bribe them with heaven?
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:37 PM   #70
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Those are some very good points you have there.

I strongly agree with the not threatening of hell. That's one thing that made me turn away from Christianity. It seems to be based too much on guilt and fear.

If you look at it from another perspective, the concept of heaven and hell is too black and white. If God is all knowing and understanding then he would be able to understand why certain people just can't beleive in his existence and why people have broken commandments for a specific cause. Such as a poor man stealing food for his family.

I guess what I'll do is teach my children about all of the different religions, beleifs and philosophies and then let them decide for themselves.




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Old 06-12-2008, 06:45 PM   #71
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Those are some very good points you have there.
I appreciate the kudos

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I strongly agree with the not threatening of hell. That's one thing that made me turn away from Christianity. It seems to be based too much on guilt and fear.
Wait, you did say that you are a roman catholic right?

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If you look at it from another perspective, the concept of heaven and hell is too black and white. If God is all knowing and understanding then he would be able to understand why certain people just can't beleive in his existence and why people have broken commandments for a specific cause. Such as a poor man stealing food for his family.
And if god created everything, then that would include hell itself and the rules that send you there, right? There's one to think about.

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I guess what I'll do is teach my children about all of the different religions, beleifs and philosophies and then let them decide for themselves.
That's one way to do it (and possibly even the best way to do it). Another would be not to teach them about any of them (until they are old enough to start asking questions on their own). My 2 cents.

Thanks for your post.
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:04 PM   #72
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I appreciate the kudos

Wait, you did say that you are a roman catholic right?

That's one way to do it (and possibly even the best way to do it). Another would be not to teach them about any of them (until they are old enough to start asking questions on their own). My 2 cents.

Thanks for your post.

I was raised in the Roman Catholic faith. I drifted away from them after my confirmation. I may go back to the church or I might just keep going the way I am now.

Yeah, I think waiting for them to be old enough to comprehend, understand and ask questions about what they are learning is also another good way. Lucky for me I've got at least three to five years to think about it.




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Old 06-12-2008, 07:09 PM   #73
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Yeah, I think waiting for them to be old enough to comprehend, understand and ask questions about what they are learning is also another good way. Lucky for me I've got at least three to five years to think about it.
Cool.

So are we good regarding why atheists "insist on proving other religions wrong" (to use your terms)?
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:18 PM   #74
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I suppose so. Fun debate.




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Old 06-12-2008, 07:20 PM   #75
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I agree.

Take care.
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Old 06-14-2008, 09:01 AM   #76
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The theological proof that God exists smacks atheists out!!!



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Old 06-14-2008, 03:43 PM   #77
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Hello, alexrdias. I hope you'll forgive that I did not watch the entire video, as only the first 4.5 minute or so seemed to be related to this "theological proof". Of course my time is valuable to me, so I will only be critiquing what I presume to be the relevant parts. If there is some other part of the video that you feel that I should address, feel free to point it out and I will be happy to do so.

Below is a summary of the argument(s) that the speaker presents in the first half:
Quote:
3 steps in establishing the existence of god:

1) God as a first cause.
2) Argument from design.
3) God as a source of morality.

4 Fundamental questions:
Origin
Meaning
Morality
Destiny

Combine the 3 steps and the 4 questions and, "Only god is big enough to explain this universe".
First, let's point out that none of these are argument for god. At best they are arguments for something supernatural, but no part of this is anywhere close to be an actual argument for the judeo-christian god. I will be returning to this point as tick through each part of this, so I wanted to lay the groundwork first. Okay:
Quote:
1) God as a first cause.
The problem with first causes is that they lead to infinite regression. If Y created Z, then what created Y? Must have been X. Well what created X then? W?

Unfortunately for the purposes of my analogy we can eventually determine that A was the first cause, but for the purposes of the actual logic, there is no end. Hence the "infinite" in "infinite regression".

However, our brain, being what it is has a very difficult time accepting this. Conflicting logic says, "well the whole thing had to have started somewhere!!!". And that's fine. Let's accept that yes, it did indeed all have to start somewhere.

But why is that answer "god"? Why isn't it "satan"? Or the titans, or the flying spaghetti monster, or magic fairiers with magic fairy dust? What evidence do any of us have for one of these fantastic ideas over any of the others? How could we possibly verify them?

Most importantly, how can we rule out a perfectly logic explanation that can be verified by science and requires no superstitious supernatualism at all? Decades of research into quantum physics brings us closer and closer to such an explanation. At some point in the future we'll be smart enough to be able to build the equipment necessary to test our predictions. At that point, there will be a few less gaps for god to hide in.

So the argument that there must have been a first cause is no more an argument for god than it is an argument for anything else. The speaker's first point fails as proof of god's existence.


Quote:
2) Argument from design.
My counterarguments here are going to sound very familiar because the same logic applies.

The appearance of design is not evidence of design. Furthermore, even if it were considered evidence of design, it tells us nothing about the designer.

The designer could be god, satan, the flying spaghetti monster, zeus, apollo, thor, invisible pink unicorns or anything else we care to dream up.

So not only do we not have any supportable argument for design, we have no supportable argument for the identity of the alleged designer. Unfortunately for the speaker, we have more than 150 years of scientific research that shows that not only is a designer not necessary, a designer is highly improbable at worst and highly incompitent at best.

The speaker's second point fails as proof of god's existence.

Quote:
3) God as a source of morality.
At this point I feel confident that I do not need to repeat that even if we were to accept that morality required an external source, that we would not be able to determine what that source is.

Also similar to the examples above is that scientific research continues to offer up natural explanations that make supernatural hypothesis unnecessary (recent research with mirror neurons, etc). Even if that were not the case, we have centuries of moral philosophy that are capable of showing that we can discover morality on our own, if it took the science a long time to be able to figure out how we do it.

So, the speaker's third point fails as proof of god's existence.

I will try to keep my summary of the last part as brief as possible:
Quote:
4 Fundamental questions:
1) Origin
2) Meaning
3) Morality
4) Destiny

Combine the 3 steps and the 4 questions and, "Only god is big enough to explain this universe".
1) Origins can be explained with abiogenesis and evolution.
2) There is no inherent meaning. The question is a non sequitur.
3) Morality can be explained with sociology and neuroscience.
4) There is no such thing as destiny. The question is a non sequitur.

So combine the three steps with the four questions and we're left with, "Supernatural explanations do not tell us anything usefull about the universe whereas science tell us quite a bit". Perhaps this is why most scientists tend to be atheists and many atheists have a passion for the sciences.

I hope that helps. Thanks again for your post.
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Old 06-14-2008, 03:43 PM   #78
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BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK

achilles' point is good too.



"No, Mama. You can bet your sweet ass and half a titty whoever put that hit on you already got the cops in their back pocket." ~Black Dynamite

Last edited by Det. Bart Lasiter; 06-14-2008 at 03:45 PM. Reason: f*10^40000
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Old 06-14-2008, 03:52 PM   #79
M@RS
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I messed up on the movie, it's called "End of the Harvest" sorry, my bad I should have known better


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Originally Posted by Q View Post
I don't want to get my hopes up, but it's like the planets are aligning or something.
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Old 06-14-2008, 04:01 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M@RS View Post
Achilles, to help with this "debate" look up and watch the movie "Before the Harvest" You might like it...
Just looked at End of the Harvest on IMDb and cannot imagine how a work of fiction is going to help the discussion. Rather than presume to have me waste an hour of my life, why don't you summarize the parts that you feel would be enlightening?
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