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The Atheist Raison D’etre
Posted: 13 April 2011 10:57 AM   [ Ignore ]  
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The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

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Posted: 16 April 2011 08:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.

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Posted: 16 April 2011 08:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 12:38 PM
toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.


The Soviets were bound by a common belief structure.
Atheists share nothing but non-belief.
And that does not encourage group cohesion.
No one is willing to die for something they don’t believe.

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Posted: 16 April 2011 12:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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toombaru - 16 April 2011 12:53 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 12:38 PM
toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.


The Soviets were bound by a common belief structure.
Atheists share nothing but non-belief.
And that does not encourage group cohesion.
No one is willing to die for something they don’t believe.

Its not really my point, but if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief. If you also believe, as almost every atheist does, that there is no afterlife, then you have a common belief structure that radically affects how you act in this life. Furthermore, in my experience, many of the “New Atheists” are forcefully against religions and see many of the problems of the world as having their source in religion. There are few forces which unite people to action more than having a common enemy which is the result of a large portion of the worlds problems. Or in my view, a common scapegoat.

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Posted: 16 April 2011 01:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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You really don’t provide much traction for discussion, Mr. J. As an acknowledged Christian, you must view us atheists as people who wake up everyday and choose not to believe in something that is actually there. If we were, than your logic would stand. But we’re not.

 


I know it is a stretch, maybe too much of a stretch, to accept atheists as those who once decided that Jehovah was not there and not as those who know they are ignoring Jehovah’s constant invitations on a daily basis. Atheism does not need to be renewed or ritually maintained. If our memories and knowledge were wiped away, we would still be atheists while you would no longer be a Christian.

 

To suggest that this is a group belief makes as much sense as socially categorizing those who no longer play Canasta. On the hand, we are united in that we all live on the outside of the dominant point of view. I have to agree with Mr. M’Baru’s comments. The challenge is unite behind secularism itself or science or rationality or…. You see the problem.

 

Unless you’re prepared to open up to some new possibilities, Mr. J., I don’t think you’ll get much of a discussion going.
I know of no of atheists that answer to your description.

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Posted: 16 April 2011 06:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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Nhoj Morley - 16 April 2011 05:34 PM

You really don’t provide much traction for discussion, Mr. J. As an acknowledged Christian, you must view us atheists as people who wake up everyday and choose not to believe in something that is actually there. If we were, than your logic would stand. But we’re not.

 


I know it is a stretch, maybe too much of a stretch, to accept atheists as those who once decided that Jehovah was not there and not as those who know they are ignoring Jehovah’s constant invitations on a daily basis. Atheism does not need to be renewed or ritually maintained. If our memories and knowledge were wiped away, we would still be atheists while you would no longer be a Christian.

 

To suggest that this is a group belief makes as much sense as socially categorizing those who no longer play Canasta. On the hand, we are united in that we all live on the outside of the dominant point of view. I have to agree with Mr. M’Baru’s comments. The challenge is unite behind secularism itself or science or rationality or…. You see the problem.

 

Unless you’re prepared to open up to some new possibilities, Mr. J., I don’t think you’ll get much of a discussion going.
I know of no of atheists that answer to your description.

To make my point clearer, I will quote you directly, but I am not doing so with the intent taking you out of context or disrespecting you. You say,


“Mr. J. As an acknowledged Christian, you must view us atheists as people who wake up everyday and choose not to believe in something that is actually there. Atheism does not need to be renewed or ritually maintained.”


This is not what I believe. However, I do believe you have accepted the proposition “God does not exist,” and hold that proposition as true, not that you need to renew it every day.


“I know it is a stretch, maybe too much of a stretch, to accept atheists as those who once decided that Jehovah was not there and not as those who know they are ignoring Jehovah’s constant invitations on a daily basis.”


In fact, since you brought it up (this is not something I enjoy talking about) my view is that when you accept the proposition that God does not exist it is similar to blinding yourself, so that you could no longer see, or have a very hard time seeing God’s grace in your life. I spent much of my life rejecting Christianity, and I don’t think God’s existence was obvious to me after I had disbelieved.

“to suggest that this is a group belief makes as much sense as socially categorizing those who no longer play Canasta.”


Correct me if I am wrong, but I belief you are defining atheism as the “lack of belief in God.” If you are saying the lack of belief in something cannot affect your worldview such that you can be socially categorized, I don’t think this will hold. If I lack belief in the reliability of science, or the reality of ethics, (neither of which I do) my worldview will be radically different then someone who accepts those things. Therefore, I don’t think substituting people who play a game with God is a sufficient comparison here.

Also, it seems to me that you are abstracting “atheism” from the real world of “atheists.” If find that atheists generally share many common beliefs. Atheists seem relatively united on issues such as homosexuality, abortion, reason and science being the sole arbiters of truth, materialism, and naturalism. Furthermore, the fact is that many atheists scapegoat religion (especially Christianity) for the world’s problems and so have something to unite on those lines.


“If our memories and knowledge were wiped away, we would still be atheists while you would no longer be a Christian.”


If you are defining atheism as the “lack of belief in God,” and taking it literally to the degree that you accept the above statement, I don’t think your definition will fare well. On this definition, dogs, squirrels, and tables are atheists because they all lack belief in God.


“I have to agree with Mr. M’Baru’s comments. The challenge is unite behind secularism itself or science or rationality or…. You see the problem.”


I am not sure I am understanding this quote correctly, and I would appreciate if you explained to me how you understand it in relation to this discussion before I respond.


“Unless you’re prepared to open up to some new possibilities, Mr. J., I don’t think you’ll get much of a discussion going.
I know of no of atheists that answer to your description.”

I have tried to understand and reply to your arguments fairly, I apologize if I have mischaracterized you. If atheists do not declare themselves in the category of people who accept the proposition “God does not exist,” it does not follow that they do not accept this proposition. What I contend, (though as I pointed out this is not what I intended initially to argue) is that if you lack a belief in God you also accept the proposition “God does not exist.” (unless you are a tree or a fish, but I assume you wouldn’t call them atheists) The fact that atheists seem to refuse to admit that they accept the proposition, “God does not exist,” seems to me to be because they have realized that they cannot defend this proposition in debates, since it requires a certain amount of evidence that they do not possess.


I look forward to reading your response,
I wish you the best.

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Posted: 16 April 2011 07:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 04:23 PM
toombaru - 16 April 2011 12:53 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 12:38 PM
toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.


The Soviets were bound by a common belief structure.
Atheists share nothing but non-belief.
And that does not encourage group cohesion.
No one is willing to die for something they don’t believe.

Its not really my point, but if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief. If you also believe, as almost every atheist does, that there is no afterlife, then you have a common belief structure that radically affects how you act in this life. Furthermore, in my experience, many of the “New Atheists” are forcefully against religions and see many of the problems of the world as having their source in religion. There are few forces which unite people to action more than having a common enemy which is the result of a large portion of the worlds problems. Or in my view, a common scapegoat.

Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.
There is no evidence to support the belief in an afterlife and I see no reason to believe that “good’ behavior will be rewarded after we die.
I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous.

[ Edited: 17 April 2011 08:28 AM by toombaru]
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Posted: 17 April 2011 06:01 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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…since you brought it up (this is not something I enjoy talking about) my view is that when you accept the proposition that God does not exist it is similar to blinding yourself, so that you could no longer see, or have a very hard time seeing God’s grace in your life. I spent much of my life rejecting Christianity,


This sure sounds like you’re making my point for me, Mr. J. Here you are describing us as those who deny the existence of something that is there. For you, any proposition that Jehovah does not exist is complicated by the fact that He does. This shows in bizarre statements like this:

…and I don’t think God’s existence was obvious to me after I had disbelieved.

Why is this something you don’t like to talk about?

 

Nh: “If our memories and knowledge were wiped away, we would still be atheists while you would no longer be a Christian.”

If you are defining atheism as the “lack of belief in God,” and taking it literally to the degree that you accept the above statement, I don’t think your definition will fare well. On this definition, dogs, squirrels, and tables are atheists because they all lack belief in God.

Yes. I told you it would be a stretch.
On the subject of theism, I have more in common with than the table than you.

What I contend, (though as I pointed out this is not what I intended initially to argue) is that if you lack a belief in God you also accept the proposition “God does not exist.”

I guess so, Mr. J. But only when the proposition is put forth. The rest of the time… not so much.

The fact that atheists seem to refuse to admit that they accept the proposition, “God does not exist,” seems to me to be because they have realized that they cannot defend this proposition in debates, since it requires a certain amount of evidence that they do not possess.

This also makes my point. Atheism must seem like quite a conundrum if this statement seems logical to you.

“Accepting the proposition” means something very different to me than you, at least in this context.

 

I take the position that Jehovah is a myth based on the same pile of evidence as those who claim He is real because for me, it is the more reasonable position. I don’t “ultimately reason” or “absolutely reason” because that would not be reasonable.
Yours is the proposition that has the burden of evidence. The case for Jehovah is unconvincing and I am unconvinced. What burden of proof do I carry with this stance?


You insist on framing these questions in a religious context. My answers are framed in a non-religious context. Hence, no traction.


It is more reasonable to conclude that the reason you are a Christian has more to do with how primates evolved into conscious creatures than how the cosmos is actually structured. I think your Personal Experience God (PEG) and other PEG’s that other theists have brought to the site will find an equally mundane explanation.


To try to find some absolute conclusion about “The Proposition That God Exists” is absurd.
The premise is so ridiculous as to render it beyond proving or disproving.
I am quite tired of visiting this old sandbox on the church playground.


Back to Mr. Ru’s original point…
I admit that we atheists should recognize the common advantage of standing on the solid ground of reasonableness. Actually, we do. So far, all we gotten out this is a Jon Stewart Rally. Otherwise, we are like a herd of cats with varied positions on economics, sociology, ethics and even science issues. Religion has been the blueprint for organizing people with a particular point of view and that is the last thing we want. Granted, trying to turn the Federal Government into a compassionate community of secularism is not the best choice. But how do we start a religion that isn’t a religion? How do you have gurus that aren’t really gurus? And how the hell do we do this on your turf?


If someone held a political rally for those who propose the non-existence of God, I would not go. Too stupid, and not the point.
It would be amusing to see who would show up. 


Can you step out of the box, Mr. J.?


I appreciate the respectful tone. By the way, the name thing is just a bit of fun we have here and in no way is meant to be derogatory (unless it really obvious). Feel free to loosen your collar a bit.

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Posted: 17 April 2011 01:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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toombaru - 16 April 2011 11:56 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 04:23 PM
toombaru - 16 April 2011 12:53 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 12:38 PM
toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.


The Soviets were bound by a common belief structure.
Atheists share nothing but non-belief.
And that does not encourage group cohesion.
No one is willing to die for something they don’t believe.

Its not really my point, but if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief. If you also believe, as almost every atheist does, that there is no afterlife, then you have a common belief structure that radically affects how you act in this life. Furthermore, in my experience, many of the “New Atheists” are forcefully against religions and see many of the problems of the world as having their source in religion. There are few forces which unite people to action more than having a common enemy which is the result of a large portion of the worlds problems. Or in my view, a common scapegoat.

Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.
There is no evidence to support the belief in an afterlife and I see no reason to believe that “good’ behavior will be rewarded after we die.
I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous.

I said, “if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief.” You responded,
Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.”
Therefore, I am unsure how this is not a straw man.

I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.

I was not thinking of these things. I had in mind the fact that if you don’t believe there is an afterlife you probably don’t believe in any religion and so have in common something with others with the same belief. However, in reality, it is much different. Atheists form groups, this forum for the most part is an atheist group, Richard Dawkins’ foundation is an atheist group. I visited the site recently and there is a link called “non-believers giving aid.” This seems to be a clear example of what you said would not happen, atheists forming groups and taking action because atheism is a non-belief. In reality, however, they are forming groups and defining themselves by their non belief.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous I agree with you, and I am a Christian. Theologians have sometimes called this “demon faith,” based on “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.[sarcasm]”(James 2:19) And verses like, “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Cor. 9:7)

However, if sometimes someone does good simply to avoid punishment, I don’t think this is wrong. If there was no threat of punishment for breaking laws, how would society function? If we relied on the goodness of people’s hearts to do good and eliminated the police I think this world would be ruled by gangs and thugs. Nevertheless, I don’t think that someone who does good only to avoid punishment is moral at all. I would probably agree with the theologians who called it demon faith.

[ Edited: 17 April 2011 02:03 PM by TJ the Christian]
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Posted: 17 April 2011 03:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]  
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TJ the Christian - 17 April 2011 05:25 PM
toombaru - 16 April 2011 11:56 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 04:23 PM
toombaru - 16 April 2011 12:53 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 12:38 PM
toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.


The Soviets were bound by a common belief structure.
Atheists share nothing but non-belief.
And that does not encourage group cohesion.
No one is willing to die for something they don’t believe.

Its not really my point, but if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief. If you also believe, as almost every atheist does, that there is no afterlife, then you have a common belief structure that radically affects how you act in this life. Furthermore, in my experience, many of the “New Atheists” are forcefully against religions and see many of the problems of the world as having their source in religion. There are few forces which unite people to action more than having a common enemy which is the result of a large portion of the worlds problems. Or in my view, a common scapegoat.

Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.
There is no evidence to support the belief in an afterlife and I see no reason to believe that “good’ behavior will be rewarded after we die.
I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous.

I said, “if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief.” You responded,
Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.”
Therefore, I am unsure how this is not a straw man.

I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.

I was not thinking of these things. I had in mind the fact that if you don’t believe there is an afterlife you probably don’t believe in any religion and so have in common something with others with the same belief. However, in reality, it is much different. Atheists form groups, this forum for the most part is an atheist group, Richard Dawkins’ foundation is an atheist group. I visited the site recently and there is a link called “non-believers giving aid.” This seems to be a clear example of what you said would not happen, atheists forming groups and taking action because atheism is a non-belief. In reality, however, they are forming groups and defining themselves by their non belief.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous I agree with you, and I am a Christian. Theologians have sometimes called this “demon faith,” based on “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.[sarcasm]”(James 2:19) And verses like, “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Cor. 9:7)

However, if sometimes someone does good simply to avoid punishment, I don’t think this is wrong. If there was no threat of punishment for breaking laws, how would society function? If we relied on the goodness of people’s hearts to do good and eliminated the police I think this world would be ruled by gangs and thugs. Nevertheless, I don’t think that someone who does good only to avoid punishment is moral at all. I would probably agree with the theologians who called it demon faith.

 


Let’s say that you find yourself is a world where eighty percent of the people continue to believe in Santa after the age of six.
Lets say that most of the adults walk around asking Santa for favors…...praising Him for his wonderful grace…...and indoctrinating their children to follow their ill founded footsteps.
Let’s say that there are many different Santa sects in which He is imagined to be vastly different.
Let’s say that some of the true believers want to convert or kill anyone who believes in what they consider the wrong Santa.
Some of the groups subjugate women and children based on what they are told their particular Santa said several thousand years ago.
Some of the people believe that everything their leader says comes directly from Santa.
I could go on and on.
Let’s say that they insist in clinging to their beliefs in spite of there not being a shred of evidence to support their shared delusion.
Let’s say that after many attempts by you and others to show them the lunacy of believing that on the top of the world lives a man who is obsessed with how they act, what they say and what they eat….how they cut their hair or touch their private parts…..and if they don’t follow His demands…....He will cast them into the flames of hell…...not for a hundred years….......not for a thousand years….....not for a million years….....not for a billion years….......not for a trillion years….........and not for a trillion trillion years…......but for eternity.

Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance?

You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

It really isn’t the desire to organize and convert true believers that drives the average non-believer.

The average atheist is infused with a profound sense of compassion and agonizes over all the time, money and effort that is wasted trying to placate an imagined creator.

[ Edited: 17 April 2011 03:26 PM by toombaru]
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Posted: 17 April 2011 09:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]  
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toombaru - 17 April 2011 07:23 PM
TJ the Christian - 17 April 2011 05:25 PM
toombaru - 16 April 2011 11:56 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 04:23 PM
toombaru - 16 April 2011 12:53 PM
TJ the Christian - 16 April 2011 12:38 PM
toombaru - 13 April 2011 02:57 PM

The reason you won’t see a bunch of atheists forming a group to take on the local religious zealots is simply because atheists share no common belief structure and are unwilling to die for an ideology they don’t have.

Chances are….....if it comes to an armed conflict…....the atheists will lose.

Don’t forget about Soviet Russia where they did from a group and exterminated religious pope.


The Soviets were bound by a common belief structure.
Atheists share nothing but non-belief.
And that does not encourage group cohesion.
No one is willing to die for something they don’t believe.

Its not really my point, but if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief. If you also believe, as almost every atheist does, that there is no afterlife, then you have a common belief structure that radically affects how you act in this life. Furthermore, in my experience, many of the “New Atheists” are forcefully against religions and see many of the problems of the world as having their source in religion. There are few forces which unite people to action more than having a common enemy which is the result of a large portion of the worlds problems. Or in my view, a common scapegoat.

Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.
There is no evidence to support the belief in an afterlife and I see no reason to believe that “good’ behavior will be rewarded after we die.
I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous.

I said, “if you believe the proposition “there is no God,” then you share a common belief.” You responded,
Calling not believing in something a shared belief is like calling not stamp collecting a hobby.”
Therefore, I am unsure how this is not a straw man.

I am kind to people, have been an in home hospice volunteer for many years, donate more than a fair share of my income to disaster relief, swerve my car to avoid collision with small animals, comb my wife’s hair in the evening and hug my grandchildren every chance I get.
All without regard for my afterlife living circumstances.

I was not thinking of these things. I had in mind the fact that if you don’t believe there is an afterlife you probably don’t believe in any religion and so have in common something with others with the same belief. However, in reality, it is much different. Atheists form groups, this forum for the most part is an atheist group, Richard Dawkins’ foundation is an atheist group. I visited the site recently and there is a link called “non-believers giving aid.” This seems to be a clear example of what you said would not happen, atheists forming groups and taking action because atheism is a non-belief. In reality, however, they are forming groups and defining themselves by their non belief.
The thought of doing all that because one fears an imaginary god or is hoping to fast track a future of eternal bliss makes me nauseous I agree with you, and I am a Christian. Theologians have sometimes called this “demon faith,” based on “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.[sarcasm]”(James 2:19) And verses like, “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Cor. 9:7)

However, if sometimes someone does good simply to avoid punishment, I don’t think this is wrong. If there was no threat of punishment for breaking laws, how would society function? If we relied on the goodness of people’s hearts to do good and eliminated the police I think this world would be ruled by gangs and thugs. Nevertheless, I don’t think that someone who does good only to avoid punishment is moral at all. I would probably agree with the theologians who called it demon faith.

 


Let’s say that you find yourself is a world where eighty percent of the people continue to believe in Santa after the age of six.
Lets say that most of the adults walk around asking Santa for favors…...praising Him for his wonderful grace…...and indoctrinating their children to follow their ill founded footsteps.
Let’s say that there are many different Santa sects in which He is imagined to be vastly different.
Let’s say that some of the true believers want to convert or kill anyone who believes in what they consider the wrong Santa.
Some of the groups subjugate women and children based on what they are told their particular Santa said several thousand years ago.
Some of the people believe that everything their leader says comes directly from Santa.
I could go on and on.
Let’s say that they insist in clinging to their beliefs in spite of there not being a shred of evidence to support their shared delusion.
Let’s say that after many attempts by you and others to show them the lunacy of believing that on the top of the world lives a man who is obsessed with how they act, what they say and what they eat….how they cut their hair or touch their private parts…..and if they don’t follow His demands…....He will cast them into the flames of hell…...not for a hundred years….......not for a thousand years….....not for a million years….....not for a billion years….......not for a trillion years….........and not for a trillion trillion years…......but for eternity.

Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance?

You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

It really isn’t the desire to organize and convert true believers that drives the average non-believer.

The average atheist is infused with a profound sense of compassion and agonizes over all the time, money and effort that is wasted trying to placate an imagined creator.

I don’t want to sound arrogant, but I think you admitted the point that I was debating with the other poster. The other poster claimed that atheism is not a belief system and does not therefore encourage group cohesion and group action, and so it could not result in group violence.

Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance? You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

If this is not a statement that encourages group cohesion and group action, I don’t know what is.

To adress the rest of what you said directly I want to just point out that the way you describe religion I find very insulting, but I do respect you; this is similar to how I viewed religion in the past.

Let’s say that they insist in clinging to their beliefs in spite of there not being a shred of evidence to support their shared delusion.

I don’t think this is the case. I took an enlightenment philosophy class and realized that almost every enlightenment thinker was a theist who believed that you could prove the existence of God by reason alone. I never once came across the “blind watchmaker” argument that Dawkins rails against. For contemporary philosopher’s I find the arguments that William Lane Craig gives for the existence of God (when that is the debate topic) very strong.

Let’s say that after many attempts by you and others to show them the lunacy of believing that on the top of the world lives a man who is obsessed with how they act, what they say and what they eat….how they cut their hair or touch their private parts…..and if they don’t follow His demands…....He will cast them into the flames of hell…...not for a hundred years….......not for a thousand years….....not for a million years….....not for a billion years….......not for a trillion years….........and not for a trillion trillion years…......but for eternity.

 

Since I read “The Dialogues of Plato” in High School I have questioned everything, and I continue to do so constantly. I have watched many debates on the existence of God, and looked at arguments against God’s existence in books, and find none of them convincing. I received an A in logic class, an A in my Enlightenment Philosophy class, and I am in my senior year in college with a 3.67 cumulative GPA. I don’t think its fair to characterize my beliefs as lunacy.

 


The God that you mentioned above is a God I reject as well. I don’t think God is obsessed with how we act, and I think the only reason he cares how we act is because he wants what is best for us. I don’t think his main concern is how we cut our hair or if we touch our private parts. Jesus actually says this when asked about what are the greatest commandments, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

 


On Hell, there is much debate in Christian theology, but no theologian teaches that you will go there because to don’t eat something right or because you touched your privates. I heard a debate on a radio show called “Unbelievable” with between two Christians who were debating the existence of eternal torment. One argued, rather strongly, that eternal conscious torment for all those who reject God is something that came from the influence of Greek Philosophy into the Christian Church. (of which there has been a lot) Specifically it was the idea of an eternal soul that this Theologian argued was from Greek Philosophy. If souls are not eternal, they can be destroyed in hell. The biblical statements where the word “eternity” is used in connection with Hell could be understood as claiming that the judgement of God is eternal in its effects. By “eternal in its effects” I mean final. It could be God’s final decision that such a person will not be saved, but it does not follow that this person could not cease to exist in hell. But I understand why the existence of Hell would be a difficult thing to accept. When I became more convinced about the authority of the bible, this had caused me some very difficult sleepless nights. But as I get to know God, and His character, this becomes less of a problem for me.

 

Furthermore, if there is no punishment in the afterlife, life seems almost unbearable. To imagine that Hitler lived a life of fame and indulgence and received no punishment but a quiet painless death with his wife seems just as much of a problem for naturalism as the existence of Hell is for Christianity.

 

If you have more points that you would like to bring up, I would be happy to respond. I wish you the best, you remind me of myself a few years ago and I honestly respect you. I think there are a lot of things about modern day popular Christianity that Atheists have a right to be upset about, but also, a lot of those same things many Christians are upset about as well. I wish you the best.

[ Edited: 17 April 2011 09:35 PM by TJ the Christian]
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Posted: 17 April 2011 11:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]  
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Let’s say that you find yourself is a world where eighty percent of the people continue to believe in Santa after the age of six.
Lets say that most of the adults walk around asking Santa for favors…...praising Him for his wonderful grace…...and indoctrinating their children to follow their ill founded footsteps.
Let’s say that there are many different Santa sects in which He is imagined to be vastly different.
Let’s say that some of the true believers want to convert or kill anyone who believes in what they consider the wrong Santa.
Some of the groups subjugate women and children based on what they are told their particular Santa said several thousand years ago.
Some of the people believe that everything their leader says comes directly from Santa.
I could go on and on.
Let’s say that they insist in clinging to their beliefs in spite of there not being a shred of evidence to support their shared delusion.
Let’s say that after many attempts by you and others to show them the lunacy of believing that on the top of the world lives a man who is obsessed with how they act, what they say and what they eat….how they cut their hair or touch their private parts…..and if they don’t follow His demands…....He will cast them into the flames of hell…...not for a hundred years….......not for a thousand years….....not for a million years….....not for a billion years….......not for a trillion years….........and not for a trillion trillion years…......but for eternity.

Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance?

You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

It really isn’t the desire to organize and convert true believers that drives the average non-believer.

The average atheist is infused with a profound sense of compassion and agonizes over all the time, money and effort that is wasted trying to placate an imagined creator.

 

 

 

 

I don’t want to sound arrogant, but I think you admitted the point that I was debating with the other poster. The other poster claimed that atheism is not a belief system and does not therefore encourage group cohesion and group action, and so it could not result in group violence.

Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance? You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

If this is not a statement that encourages group cohesion and group action, I don’t know what is.

 

 

 

(t)
Not believing in something for which there is no evidence cannot be called a shared belief.
Simply not believing in God does not create a common belief anymore than not believing in worm cows or moon monsters.
I could make an infinite list of unbelievable creatures.
You and I could come to full agreement that they do not exist and yet we couldn’t call our mutual unbelief a shared belief.

 

 

 

 

 

To address the rest of what you said directly I want to just point out that the way you describe religion I find very insulting, but I do respect you; this is similar to how I viewed religion in the past.

 

 

 

 

 

(t)
There is no evidence to suggest the presence of a living God.
“Lunacy” is a term that can be applied to those who believe in the make believe.
Those of a religious mindset invariably protect their beliefs by being insulted when their religion is questioned.
It is viewed as impolite to point out the logical flaws within religious thought and yet the same restraints do not apply to one’s other beliefs.
It’s a clever trick that keeps religion safe from reason.
If your beliefs are beyond question, whatever anyone says about it should have no effect on you at all.
There is nothing that you could say about my non-belief that I would find insulting since non-belief is simply the absence of belief.

 

 

 

Let’s say that they insist in clinging to their beliefs in spite of there not being a shred of evidence to support their shared delusion.

I don’t think this is the case. I took an enlightenment philosophy class and realized that almost every enlightenment thinker was a theist who believed that you could prove the existence of God by reason alone.

 


(t)
Perhaps you would care to do that here.
I would be most interested.

 

 


I never once came across the “blind watchmaker” argument that Dawkins rails against. For contemporary philosopher’s I find the arguments that William Lane Craig gives for the existence of God (when that is the debate topic) very strong.

 

 

 

(t)
When he was six, I ask Natie if he believed in the Easter Bunny.
“Yes”, he said, “I do”.
“Why do you say that?”, I said.
“Well”, he said, “Zoe (his eight year old sister) said that she actually saw the Easter Bunny.

........end of conversation.


There are no arguments to support the existence of God or the Easter Bunny.
If there were, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

 

 

Let’s say that after many attempts by you and others to show them the lunacy of believing that on the top of the world lives a man who is obsessed with how they act, what they say and what they eat….how they cut their hair or touch their private parts…..and if they don’t follow His demands…....He will cast them into the flames of hell…...not for a hundred years….......not for a thousand years….....not for a million years….....not for a billion years….......not for a trillion years….........and not for a trillion trillion years…......but for eternity.

 

Since I read “The Dialogues of Plato” in High School I have questioned everything, and I continue to do so constantly. I have watched many debates on the existence of God, and looked at arguments against God’s existence in books, and find none of them convincing.

 


(t)
That’s simply because the non-existence of something can’t be proven.
I can’t prove that there are no purple angels on the moon.
If someone tells me that there are…....I would expect them to offer some form of evidence.

 

 

 

I received an A in logic class, an A in my Enlightenment Philosophy class, and I am in my senior year in college with a 3.67 cumulative GPA. I don’t think its fair to characterize my beliefs as lunacy.

 

 

 


(t)
You are obviously very smart.
Some very smart people believe some very strange things.
Mitt Romney is a Mormon.
He believes that when he dies he will get his very own planet with all new animals over which he will eventually become God.
John Travolta is a Scientologist…....He believes that spacemen….....well you get the idea
I would call that Lunacy.

 


The God that you mentioned above is a God I reject as well.

 

(t)
If you believe in the Christian God, you have to accept the Bible as the word God.
You have to take the whole thing as truth or none of it as truth.
You can’t just choose the parts that coincide with your preconceptions.
If you reject the Christian God, you will have to invent your own.
I’m pretty sure that you could come up with a better one than any currently around today.

 


I don’t think God is obsessed with how we act, and I think the only reason he cares how we act is because he wants what is best for us.

 

 


(t)
A God with a plan is an impotent, indecisive God.
If He wants something, why doesn’t He just go ahead and do it?

 

 


I don’t think his main concern is how we cut our hair or if we touch our private parts. Jesus actually says this when asked about what are the greatest commandments, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

 

 


(t)
If God wants my love so much, why didn’t He wire me so that I would love Him?

 

 

 

 


On Hell, there is much debate in Christian theology, but no theologian teaches that you will go there because to don’t eat something right or because you touched your privates. I heard a debate on a radio show called “Unbelievable” with between two Christians who were debating the existence of eternal torment. One argued, rather strongly, that eternal conscious torment for all those who reject God is something that came from the influence of Greek Philosophy into the Christian Church. (of which there has been a lot) Specifically it was the idea of an eternal soul that this Theologian argued was from Greek Philosophy. If souls are not eternal, they can be destroyed in hell. The biblical statements where the word “eternity” is used in connection with Hell could be understood as claiming that the judgement of God is eternal in its effects. By “eternal in its effects” I mean final. It could be God’s final decision that such a person will not be saved, but it does not follow that this person could not cease to exist in hell. But I understand why the existence of Hell would be a difficult thing to accept. When I became more convinced about the authority of the bible, this had caused me some very difficult sleepless nights. But as I get to know God, and His character, this becomes less of a problem for me.

(t)
The nice thing about all things imaginary is that they can be reshaped to fit any container.

 


Furthermore, if there is no punishment in the afterlife, life seems almost unbearable.

 


(t)
Here the opposite is true.

 

 

 

 


To imagine that Hitler lived a life of fame and indulgence and received no punishment but a quiet painless death with his wife seems just as much of a problem for naturalism as the existence of Hell is for Christianity.

 

 

 


(t)
I see no problem.
Explaining Hitler by using religious thought merely kicks the can down the road.
Try explaining where and how this punishment data is stored and the criteria used to dole out the proper sentence.

 

If you have more points that you would like to bring up, I would be happy to respond. I wish you the best, you remind me of myself a few years ago and I honestly respect you.

 


(t)
I respect your courage to discuss your religious beliefs.
That is very rare.
I do not, however, respect your beliefs.

 


I think there are a lot of things about modern day popular Christianity that Atheists have a right to be upset about, but also, a lot of those same things many Christians are upset about as well. I wish you the best.

 

 

 


(t)
Conflicting belief will always create tension.
Especially when those for whom there is no supporting evidence come in contact with those who demand evidence.

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Posted: 18 April 2011 07:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]  
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toombaru - 18 April 2011 03:06 AM

Let’s say that you find yourself is a world where eighty percent of the people continue to believe in Santa after the age of six ...

... Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance?

You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

It really isn’t the desire to organize and convert true believers that drives the average non-believer.

The fact that question even comes up is a demonstration of special case thinking—compartmentalization.

We humans are a highly social species with a pretty amazing capacity for communication, so we tend to form groups around topics of mutual interest. This isn’t an obscure fact about our social structure, it’s pretty basic to our nature—standard issue human behavior. That alone explains atheist forums, but what you explained above should also be quite obvious to anyone who’s not “changed intellectual gears” when considering the topic. So when the question occurs to someone, damn near at the same time more than one sufficient explanation should also occur to that someone ... assuming such consideration doesn’t run into internal cognitive obstacles, such as a world view that won’t allow for it (cognitive dissonance).

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Posted: 18 April 2011 08:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]  
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SkepticX - 18 April 2011 11:51 AM
toombaru - 18 April 2011 03:06 AM

Let’s say that you find yourself is a world where eighty percent of the people continue to believe in Santa after the age of six ...

... Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance?

You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common.

It really isn’t the desire to organize and convert true believers that drives the average non-believer.

The fact that question even comes up is a demonstration of special case thinking—compartmentalization.

We humans are a highly social species with a pretty amazing capacity for communication, so we tend to form groups around topics of mutual interest. This isn’t an obscure fact about our social structure, it’s pretty basic to our nature—standard issue human behavior. That alone explains atheist forums, but what you explained above should also be quite obvious to anyone who’s not “changed intellectual gears” when considering the topic. So when the question occurs to someone, damn near at the same time more than one sufficient explanation should also occur to that someone ... assuming such consideration doesn’t run into internal cognitive obstacles, such as a world view that won’t allow for it (cognitive dissonance).

 

That’s a great insight.
I was just thinking that there is no way that religious-magical thought can be free of cognitive dissonance.
(An uncomfortable feeling caused by holding conflicting ideas simultaneously.)
And that for a few the brain-soothing ideas that religion offers in its effort to answer the mind’s imponderables creates even more stress and are simply abandoned.

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Posted: 18 April 2011 02:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]  
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I have spent about an hour responding to your comments. I need to get homework done, so I have not finished responding to all of them, but I will soon. I trust that you are reading everything I write, and are trying to look at it without bias insofar as that is possible. I hope i didn’t accidentally delete anything, all the sudden I see I had extra characters. Please let me know if I did. The end is absent because I haven’t gotten to it yet.

toombaru - 18 April 2011 03:06 AM

Let’s say that you…[deleted for space]
Wouldn’t you feel like you were going a little crazy and want to contact someone….....anyone…..who didn’t buy into the group trance?

You wouldn’t even mind if you had nothing else in common….
.

 

 

I don’t want to sound arrogant, but I think you admitted the point that I was debating with the other poster…

 

 

 

 

(t)
Not believing in something for which there is no evidence cannot be called a shared belief.
Not believing something 80% of the U.S. believes (“Christianity”) and a majority of the worlds population is a different story. And I do not believe there is no evidence, you seem to be begging the question. not believing in God does not create a common belief anymore than not believing in worm cows or moon monsters. See above. Furthermore, I think the poster’s Santa Clause example, as I mentioned is evidence to the contrary, along with Dawkins’ group explicitly donating money in the name of unbelief.
I could make an infinite list of unbelievable creatures.
You and I could come to full agreement that they do not exist and yet we couldn’t call our mutual unbelief a shared belief. I don’t think this is an adequate example, there are significant differences between believing in God and Santa Clause, which is something I will go into later.

 

To address the rest of what you said directly I want to just point out that the way you describe religion I find very insulting, but I do respect you; this is similar to how I viewed religion in the past.


(t)
There is no evidence to suggest the presence of a living God. I disagree, I think you are arguing against a straw man. I will get into the evidence later in the post.
“Lunacy” is a term that can be applied to those who believe in the make believe. Saying the beliefs I define my life upon are lunacy, you are implying I am a lunatic. Implying someone is a lunatic who seems perfectly sane in the logical manner they speak, the courtesy they give you as a fellow human being, and the educated way in which they reason, suggests that you are supporting a weak position by ad hominem attacks. Futhermore, a less sympathetic person might call it bigoted prejudice.
Those of a religious mindset invariably protect their beliefs by being insulted when their religion is questioned. I could throw out a bunch of stereotypes of atheists at you but I wont do so. The only reason I mentioned that it was insulting is because I think we could live in a much happier world if we can speak more respectfully to each-other. I disagree with Isalm, but I could do so repsectfully. I would never compare Isalm’s God to Santa, which in any case is a ridiculous comparison, which I will address later.
It is viewed as impolite to point out the logical flaws within religious thought and yet the same restraints do not apply to one’s other beliefs.
It’s a clever trick that keeps religion safe from reason.On what basis do you judge all religious believers in this category? I love logic and reason. It seems to me that your statements here are ad hominem attacks are purposed so that you can avoid reason. That is why it classifies among the logical fallacies.
If your beliefs are beyond question, whatever anyone says about it should have no effect on you at all. If you can show that my religious belief is logically contradictory or false by rational arguments I will gladly become an atheist.
There is nothing that you could say about my non-belief that I would find insulting since non-belief is simply the absence of belief. I don’t think so. I could say that you don’t believe in God because of X, Y, Z (insert insulting phrases). But I am not going to throw out insults in this discussion.

Let’s say that they insist in clinging to their beliefs in spite of there not being a shred of evidence to support their shared delusion.

I don’t think this is the case. I took an enlightenment philosophy class and realized that almost every enlightenment thinker was a theist who believed that you could prove the existence of God by reason alone.


(t)
Perhaps you would care to do that here.
I would be most interested. I am prepared to defend any of Dr. William Lane Craig’s arguments for the existence of God. (save the Ontological argument which I do not properly understand. If you simply search his name along with the existence of God. He has defended the same arguments for over 30 years, and I have yet to find someone satisfactorily answer any of them.

 

 


I never once came across the “blind watchmaker” argument that Dawkins rails against. For contemporary philosopher’s I find the arguments that William Lane Craig gives for the existence of God (when that is the debate topic) very strong.

 

 

 

(t)
When he was six, I ask Natie if he believed in the Easter Bunny.
“Yes”, he said, “I do”.
“Why do you say that?”, I said.
“Well”, he said, “Zoe (his eight year old sister) said that she actually saw the Easter Bunny.

........end of conversation.
Two of Dr. Craigs contentions usually are: 1. There is no good reason to believe that God does not exist. 2. There are good reasons to believe that God does not exist. Same with the easter bunny vs. God.


There are no arguments to support the existence of God or the Easter Bunny. Your begging the question, I do think there are arguments, and I will be interested to see if you can refute any of Dr. Craigs.
If there were, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. Not true. What isn’t it possible for someone to deny something that is demanded by the evidence? You certainly believe religious people do that in regards to the falsehood (in your view) of their faiths.

 

 

Let’s say that after many attempts by you and others to show them the lunacy of believing…[deleted for space]

Since I read “The Dialogues of Plato” in High School I have questioned everything, and I continue to do so constantly. I have watched many debates on the existence of God, and looked at arguments against God’s existence in books, and find none of them convincing.


(t)
That’s simply because the non-existence of something can’t be proven. I disagree. I can prove there are no married bachelors, because it is a logical contradiction. Similarly many people have tried to argue that it is a logical contradiction between God’s omnipotence and the reality of evil in the world. And if it was not for Dr. Alvin Plantinga who refuted this in Philosophy, I suspect you would bring it up here.
I can’t prove that there are no purple angels on the moon.
If someone tells me that there are…....I would expect them to offer some form of evidence. As I said, I believe there is evidence i.e. Dr. Craigs arguments. Furthermore, I think you are apriori assuming that the concept of God is akin to a purple angel on the moon. I could apriori assume that atheism is akin to denying the existence external world. However, you cannot prove to me that I am not a brain in a vat hooked up to computers to make me think I am writing on the internet. However, I think I am justified in believing the world I am experiencing is real.

 

 

 

I received an A in logic class, an A in my Enlightenment Philosophy class, and I am in my senior year in college with a 3.67 cumulative GPA. I don’t think its fair to characterize my beliefs as lunacy.

 


(t)
You are obviously very smart.
Some very smart people believe some very strange things.
Mitt Romney is a Mormon.
He believes that when he dies he will get his very own planet with all new animals over which he will eventually become God.
John Travolta is a Scientologist…....He believes that spacemen….....well you get the idea
I would call that Lunacy. The example given was that of Santa. And I think my example of getting good grades in philosophy and school is sufficient to disprove this, or make it very unlikely. How many people have you met who do these things and believe in Santa Clause? How many are there? If none, or very little, as I am sure you will grant, then you need to find a better example. I think Moromonism and Scientology probably do have some grain of truth in them, such as I think secular humanism probably does. I think all are mistaken, but none are lunatics. I don’t think its fair to call them lunatics because I disagree with them.

 


The God that you mentioned above is a God I reject as well.

(t)
If you believe in the Christian God, you have to accept the Bible as the word God. I do. The debate was what the word “eternal” referred to. The duration of punishment, or finality of it.
You have to take the whole thing as truth or none of it as truth. The debate was over interpretation, as I mentioned.
You can’t just choose the parts that coincide with your preconceptions. Agreed. I don’t think I do. For this reason I am leaning toward an eternal hell. However, I don’t think you need to believe in one to be saved, which is something else I think the bible teaches.
If you reject the Christian God, you will have to invent your own. I agree. But this means you worship some God. I wonder if it is Sam Harris, or Atheism, or secularism, or sex, or something else.
I’m pretty sure that you could come up with a better one than any currently around today. Its pretty easy to say that, but the problem is that you are not even close to omniscient. If God exists, his intelligence would be almost unimaginably higher than yours, so to make such a judgement seems rather unjustified.


I don’t think God is obsessed with how we act, and I think the only reason he cares how we act is because he wants what is best for us.

 

(t)
A God with a plan is an impotent, indecisive God.
If He wants something, why doesn’t He just go ahead and do it? It could be for reasons you haven’t thought of, but I will give a possibility. He wants to act in time, and everything in time happens progressively and not immediately.

 

 


I don’t think his main concern is how we cut our hair or if we touch our private parts. Jesus actually says this when asked about what are the greatest commandments, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

 

 


(t)
If God wants my love so much, why didn’t He wire me so that I would love Him? I don’t think he wired you not to love Him. I think he wanted to make free creatures, and it is a contradiction to force free creatures to love someone.

 

 

 

 


On Hell, … [deleted for space] But as I get to know God, and His character, this becomes less of a problem for me.

(t)
The nice thing about all things imaginary is that they can be reshaped to fit any container. The debate was over the objective biblical text. Both sides must recognized that it was the final authority on the matter. The nice thing about non-beliefs is that they can serve as a cover for beliefs such as “there is no God,” and you can hide behind them in order to simply take them by faith and never take responsibility for any of the burden of proof. Which is what happened in the Craig-Hitchens debate

 

[/b

[ Edited: 18 April 2011 02:25 PM by TJ the Christian]
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“...rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind.” (1 Peter 2:1, NIV)

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Posted: 18 April 2011 03:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]  
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I tried several times to respond to your post but something seems to go haywire when it write.
I will try later.

Thanks


toombaru

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