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HOLY CRAP thank you. I love the Atheist experience.

 

...

 

Just thought I should throw that in their before I get back to my university work :shock:


Hoping to get a new Signature (with matching avatar) soon. :D

 

In the meantime...Steam username: )I'll rewrite it later (add me if you want)

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Beautiful.

 

 

 

Here is another thing that bothers me. Can religion be universal? Before answering that question let me explain what I mean. Humankind will one day be able to explore the cosmos, we may seem to be at a wall now of how slow we can travel and how much energy will be needed to travel such distances but I think we will eventually overcome it. So lets say by then we discover billions of planets (NASA has already found millions) and some that can be EXTREMELY good candidates for life. So we are colonizing different worlds that could be inhabitable for us and eventually reach planet X. Planet X has a race of beings who are intelligent enough to wonder about their place in the universe, therefor likely have religions of their own. Can any of the religions of Earth be compatible with them?

 

First problem with Christianity in perticular would be something Mormonism had a problem with. (I am no expert on Mormons so excuse me if I seem a little off) Mormons claim that all people were descendants from one tribe, and a scientist who was a Mormon showed that it was impossible through Gene theories and etc, the Mormons eventually had to edit their bible to accommodate this. To me it would be a point of weakness in faith if the bible was to be edited in a certain way to account for different beings.

 

So lets say over on Planet X, the alien race called the Klingons live there. And the astronauts visiting may carry their religion over with them, heres some possibilities for the encounter.

 

1.) Astronauts tell them about Jesus who died for their sins, and they say "Really? Jesus died for our sins thousands of years before he reached your planet"

 

- Would that mean that Jesus would be constantly planet hopping dying for the sins of a number of alien beings?

 

2.) Astronauts tell them about jesus and they say "Oh yeah he didnt die for our sins, he lead a revolution and lived as the ruler of the world"

 

- What would an alternative timeline do to the faith on Earth?

 

3.) Astronauts reach the planet and they say "Jesus? Never heard of him, whats this God, these sins you talk about?"

 

- Would they be part of Gods Covenant or would only humanity be included on it? Would it take another Jesus to die to include the Klingons on Gods Covenant?

 

If they were, would all the rules be relevant? I mean "dont look at a women with lust" what if the beings are A-sexual, I think any christian here would struggle to tell me that Gods word would apply universally instead of just to humans. And the day we do find other life, would it hurt your faith if they have to edit the bible to apply for them as well?

 

 

 

Were living in the start of the space age, while this may still seem like fantasy, the day is getting closer. My personal belief is that Christianity is written for humanity, and is fundamentally incompatible to be a universal religion.

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Watch this video for more discussion about "belief" that atheists have:

 

Which is entirely fine, but how many atheists actually leave it at a lack of belief? How many go around asserting that "God = Flying Spaghetti Monster, Santa Claus, invisible lizardmen running the Illuminati, four-sided triangles, etc." (hint: "I declare god fictional")? Please, I see just as many passionate atheists reciprocating religious people's unfounded claims with more unfounded claims. Did I mention I love it when an atheist argues in intricate detail how modest their belief is?

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Watch this video for more discussion about "belief" that atheists have:

 

Which is entirely fine, but how many atheists actually leave it at a lack of belief? How many go around asserting that "God = Flying Spaghetti Monster, Santa Claus, invisible lizardmen running the Illuminati, four-sided triangles, etc." (hint: "I declare god fictional")?

 

What? What the hell are you talking about. The point is that God is just as believeable as any of these things because none of them have any supporting evidence. Except I have never heard the "four sided triangle" comparison. I would disagree with that comparison because that is an impossibility, not a theory that lacks evidence.

 

Please, I see just as many passionate atheists reciprocating religious people's unfounded claims with more unfounded claims.

 

Such as? I'd love to hear the claims that you hear other "atheists" make

 

Did I mention I love it when an atheist argues in intricate detail how modest their belief is?

 

Modest? Belief? Again, I'm lost as to what you are talking about and what your point is.


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A philosophical answer is not a scientific answer - and the existence of God is infinitely more complex than just science as it has many moral and philosophical offshoots.

 

So why does this ONE issue of the physical world get to be answered by philosophy instead of science?

 

Because science can't answer it, and you've already admitted multiple times.

 

 

If by "creator" you mean "any causal mechanism" then okay.

 

I mean creative force - and a creative force by definition has some sort of intent or purpose.

 

 

If I tell you that a teapot is in orbit around Jupiter, does it take more faith to believe me or to disbelieve me?

 

Also, nobody has any bones to pick with God. If you make any claims that are based on zero evidence I would be just as little convinced.

 

If I claim that I have an invisible pet unicorn, does it take just as much faith to believe me as to not believe me?

Do you hold other beliefs about the physical world that have zero evidence?

 

This is exactly what I'm trying to say. What I've been reiterating over the past few pages is scientific evidence for the reasonable existence of, at very least, some kind of creative force to whom all the laws of our universe cannot apply.

 

What? A theory is not evidence. Not sure what youre saying here.

 

Interesting - yet the big bang has never been observed, yet many seem content to take that theory as evidence.


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Interesting - yet the big bang has never been observed, yet many seem content to take that theory as evidence.

 

HERP DERP.

 

The Big Bang has not been observed, clearly, since it happened 13-odd billion years ago. But we can plainly see the evidence of it.


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Because science can't answer it, and you've already admitted multiple times.

 

CAN'T answer it? You mean...ever? Why wouldn't science be able to answer the question? I have never "admitted" that the question cannot be answered. I have said that we do not yet have the answer.

 

There are plenty of things that science does not have an answer for right now, and the only one people think "God" is an acceptable explantion for is creation. Do you use philosophy to answer other unanswered scientific questions?

 

Do you have a personal theory for the cure for AIDS? Do you have a personal theory for how we will unify the standard model of particle physics? Theres lots of unexplained questions about the physical world, and we don't just go around writing philosophy for use as an explanation.

 

I mean creative force - and a creative force by definition has some sort of intent or purpose.

 

Why did there have to be someone who intended something to happen? Do you think of other natural things, such as volcanoes erupting, having intent or purpose?

 

This is exactly what I'm trying to say. What I've been reiterating over the past few pages is scientific evidence for the reasonable existence of, at very least, some kind of creative force to whom all the laws of our universe cannot apply.

 

What? You've been reiterating evidence? You have no evidence.

Interesting - yet the big bang has never been observed, yet many seem content to take that theory as evidence.

 

There are many other sources of evidence that are not direct historical observation. Think: did we see any animals evolve? No. Also, another common example is the fact that Pluto's orbit is over 200 years in length but we haven't even known about the planet for 100 years. How do we know this? Because direct observation of an event is only one source of scientific evidence. Our evidence in support of the big bang is largely similar to our evidence for evolution; it is based on historical reconstruction.

 

Also "take that theory as evidence" doesn't make any sense. Theories are not taken as evidence. Evidence is taken as evidence and theories are constructed based on that evidence.


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I wish someone would answer my logical problem with space age christianity.

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I wish someone would answer my logical problem with space age christianity.

http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0802629.htm


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I wish someone would answer my logical problem with space age christianity.

http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0802629.htm

 

What if the aliens are atheists?

 

 

EDIT: Come on creationists, I'm waiting to debate more flawed logic. Let's get back in this thread


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What? What the hell are you talking about. The point is that God is just as believeable as any of these things because none of them have any supporting evidence.

 

Physical supporting evidence of a god is a pretty pointless thing to ask. God, theology, the metaphysical, just does not come down to line-and-grid lab-testing experimenting. Even if there were a god, we wouldn't have evidence. It just does not apply to this field. It's like asking, "How many people did we prevent from overdosing by building a drug rehabilitation center in this city?". Obviously there is an objective answer, but just not one humans can accurately ascertain (unless we had a time machine). So since we physically cannot observe any evidence, does this mean it would be logical to assume no overdoses were prevented? Absolutely not - it would be a jump to assert anything other than ignorance. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

 

As for Santa, there's a little more to this entity's plausibility than an absence of evidence. I've explained how there are quite a few things that suggest Santa is not real. Every present given from "Santa Claus" can be traced back to either a family member, friend, or charitable stranger via a receipt, credit card history, camera, etc. There's also the fact that no one has yet to record or photograph him, despite him making no great attempts of hiding himself on the count of him flying across the world and going to your house through your chimney, year after year. If he really was the one giving us the presents, I'm pretty sure we would know by now.

 

As for the FSM, it was the most ridiculous example someone could think of in order to compare to something they deem as ridiculous - that has to say something about it's plausibility. It was created for a good purpose though: to propose the idea that we shouldn't have something so iffy and controversial, that lacks any evidence, as part of a school curriculum; now it has been perverted into a way of asserting that god is not real on an epistemological level. And this just sounds an awful lot like appeal to ridicule to me.

 

Appeal to ridicule is a logical fallacy which presents the opponent's argument in a way that appears ridiculous, often to the extent of creating a straw man of the actual argument, rather than addressing the argument itself.

 

This is a rhetorical tactic which mocks an opponent's argument, attempting to inspire an emotional reaction (making it a type of appeal to emotion) in the audience and to highlight the counter-intuitive aspects of that argument, making it appear foolish and contrary to common sense. This is typically done by demonstrating the argument's logic in an extremely absurd way or by presenting the argument in an overly simplified way, and often involves an appeal to consequences.

 

People who argue god is real are not arguing that Santa Claus is real. You are just avoiding debating the existence of god, and instead trying to debate the existence of Santa Claus and FSM by equating them.

 

Except I have never heard the "four sided triangle" comparison. I would disagree with that comparison because that is an impossibility, not a theory that lacks evidence.

 

You have made the claim that you don't fully reject any idea with 100% certainty (such as Santa Claus), yet you claim the concept of a four-sided triangle is an impossibility. So you do pick and choose what to believe with 100% certainty - you just didn't realize it.

 

Such as? I'd love to hear the claims that you hear other "atheists" make

 

"There is no god."

"The God Delusion."

"Religion is the source of every world problem."

"All thinking men are atheists."

"If god existed, then X wouldn't happen."

 

And my favorite:

 

"If you believe in a god, that must mean you also believe in Santa Claus."

 

The fact that you don't think atheists can make illogical claims driven by their atheism is amazing. Not that I have a problem with atheism in it's purest form - but from what I've seen, it's often a little more than "a mere lack of belief". Sometimes it really can be the [hypocritical] inverse of religion. And this is all I am arguing: People need to stop making baseless assertions about something they don't know.

 

Modest? Belief? Again, I'm lost as to what you are talking about and what your point is.

 

My point is that some atheists can act very religiously and that I find it funny how passionate some can get over a lack of belief.

 

CAN'T answer it? You mean...ever? Why wouldn't science be able to answer the question? I have never "admitted" that the question cannot be answered. I have said that we do not yet have the answer.

 

The burden of proof is on you. It would only be logical for us to not believe that the question is able to be answered with science until you can show us the evidence. If I were to propose to you the existence of an orbiting teapot so small that the world's most powerful telescopes could not see it... =P~

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Don't bother CGF, the only athiest I've met on these forums who doesn't regularly break the rules of civilized debate is Meol. Why I've stopped replying ;)


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I'm incapable of believing a god exists. What's the point? There's no reason for me to believe.

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Don't bother CGF, the only athiest I've met on these forums who doesn't regularly break the rules of civilized debate is Meol. Why I've stopped replying ;)

 

Oi! I take exception to that.


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Don't bother CGF, the only athiest I've met on these forums who doesn't regularly break the rules of civilized debate is Meol. Why I've stopped replying ;)

 

Oi! I take exception to that.

I didn't count you seeing as I've debated with you like once :P


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Don't bother CGF, the only athiest I've met on these forums who doesn't regularly break the rules of civilized debate is Meol. Why I've stopped replying ;)

 

Harsh.

 

 

I'm still waiting for a reply (unless I missed it) to what I posted a while back :(.

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Don't bother CGF, the only athiest I've met on these forums who doesn't regularly break the rules of civilized debate is Meol. Why I've stopped replying ;)

 

Harsh.

 

 

I'm still waiting for a reply (unless I missed it) to what I posted a while back :(.

Which post was this? If you repost I'll reply (iirc you're an athiest, and you're reasonable enough :P).


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Physical supporting evidence of a god is a pretty pointless thing to ask. God, theology, the metaphysical, just does not come down to line-and-grid lab-testing experimenting.

 

Why not? We are talking about whether or not a god physically exists aren't we? Theres nothing metaphysical about what most people claim as their "god theory". They are making claims about the physical world.

 

Even if there were a god, we wouldn't have evidence. It just does not apply to this field.

If we are talking about the origins of the universe, evidence most certainly DOES apply to it.

It's like asking, "How many people did we prevent from overdosing by building a drug rehabilitation center in this city?". Obviously there is an objective answer, but just not one humans can accurately ascertain (unless we had a time machine). So since we physically cannot observe any evidence, does this mean it would be logical to assume no overdoses were prevented? Absolutely not - it would be a jump to assert anything other than ignorance. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

 

For the thousandth time, nobody is asserting that we have evidence for nonexistence of god.

 

As for Santa, there's a little more to this entity's plausibility than an absence of evidence. I've explained how there are quite a few things that suggest Santa is not real. Every present given from "Santa Claus" can be traced back to either a family member, friend, or charitable stranger via a receipt, credit card history, camera, etc.

None of these are evidence for nonexistence. All it is evidence for is that if Santa Claus does exist, we have his story wrong.

There's also the fact that no one has yet to record or photograph him, despite him making no great attempts of hiding himself on the count of him flying across the world and going to your house through your chimney, year after year. If he really was the one giving us the presents, I'm pretty sure we would know by now.

 

Maybe he stops giving families presents when they stop believing. Or if the family tries to tell other people that Santa is real.

 

As for the FSM, it was the most ridiculous example someone could think of in order to compare to something they deem as ridiculous - that has to say something about it's plausibility.

Actually, intent of the creation of the theory says nothing about the theory's plausibility. In fact many groundbreaking scientific theories started as random "crazy" thoughts that defied logic. Example: the origins of the heliocentric model as opposed to a geocentric model.

 

It was created for a good purpose though: to propose the idea that we shouldn't have something so iffy and controversial, that lacks any evidence, as part of a school curriculum; now it has been perverted into a way of asserting that god is not real on an epistemological level. And this just sounds an awful lot like appeal to ridicule to me.

 

Again, atheism is not assertion of nonexistence. Atheism is the rejection of a claim. Not assertion of the opposite.

 

People who argue god is real are not arguing that Santa Claus is real. You are just avoiding debating the existence of god, and instead trying to debate the existence of Santa Claus and FSM by equating them.

 

Theres no way to debate God's existence or nonexistence because the theory itself is completely illogical. Instead of debating the nonexistence of God, you have to debunk the logic.

 

Its like saying that if I claim "Theres definitely a giant invisible boat sailing around Jupiter" that you should try to refute my claim based on evidence. God existence is not debated with nonexistence because theres nothing to talk about. The theory is undebateable.


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I had to post this reply in two sections due to restriction on the number of quotes.

You have made the claim that you don't fully reject any idea with 100% certainty (such as Santa Claus), yet you claim the concept of a four-sided triangle is an impossibility. So you do pick and choose what to believe with 100% certainty - you just didn't realize it.

 

This is because a triangle is a mathematical idea. Its like saying "Do I think that 5 might equal 2?" No. I am 100% certain that 5 does not equal 2 because of how we define the concept. We can know things for certain about abstract ideas. For example: can anyone ever tell a true lie? No. It is impossible, and I know 100% for certain that a true lie does not exist. But this is only because this type of knowledge only exists in the abstract; we are talking about definitions. Claims about truth or reality in the physical world are much different than claims about abstract concepts.

 

"There is no god."

I don't say this, and it is not representative of the atheist stance.

"The God Delusion."

A delusion is by definition a belief held without evidence. If you define "delusion" to be something else, then perhaps God is not a delusion.

"Religion is the source of every world problem."

Anyone who says this is oversimplifying.

"All thinking men are atheists."

This is almost as bad as "All atheists assert that there is no god"

"If god existed, then X wouldn't happen."

This is a bogus claim and does nothing to disprove the God theory.

 

And my favorite:

"If you believe in a god, that must mean you also believe in Santa Claus."

 

I never said that if you believe one you must believe the other. It is merely a comparable argument because neither case has any supporting evidence.

 

The fact that you don't think atheists can make illogical claims driven by their atheism is amazing.

I never said atheists can't make illogical claims. In fact I said I'd love to hear what claims you hear "atheists" make, so that I can evaluate whether or not it is even representative of the atheist standpoint.

 

Not that I have a problem with atheism in it's purest form - but from what I've seen, it's often a little more than "a mere lack of belief".

And theism is often more than a belief that a god exists. So? It doesn't mean that I take into account gay-bashers and racists when I am evaluating the claim of a god's existence.

 

Sometimes it really can be the [hypocritical] inverse of religion. And this is all I am arguing: People need to stop making baseless assertions about something they don't know.

 

I don't think anyone even in this thread has made any assertions that god is nonexistent. It sounds like you have met some pretty dumb atheists.

 

Modest? Belief? Again, I'm lost as to what you are talking about and what your point is.

 

My point is that some atheists can act very religiously and that I find it funny how passionate some can get over a lack of belief.

 

The burden of proof is on you. It would only be logical for us to not believe that the question is able to be answered with science until you can show us the evidence.

 

I didn't say that science can and will answer the question. I asked why you claim (if that IS what you're claiming) that science will not be able to answer it? There certainly is no reason to believe that the question is unanswerable by science, but that doesn't mean that it will definitely be answered by science.

 

Also this question is not a scientific question. "Can science be used to determine the origins of the universe?" is not a scientific question and doesn't have any relationship to physical evidence. It is a philosophical question. If you don't think science can be used to answer the question then theres no point in trying to prove it or argue against atheists.

If I were to propose to you the existence of an orbiting teapot so small that the world's most powerful telescopes could not see it... =P~

Then the burden of proof would be on you to support your claim.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also @Y_Guy is there something I've done to convince you that I do not debate civilly?


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Don't bother CGF, the only athiest I've met on these forums who doesn't regularly break the rules of civilized debate is Meol. Why I've stopped replying ;)

 

Harsh.

 

 

I'm still waiting for a reply (unless I missed it) to what I posted a while back :(.

Which post was this? If you repost I'll reply (iirc you're an athiest, and you're reasonable enough :P).

 

Found it.

 

What I don't get is what makes Christianity a more "believable" means of explaining the world compared to the thousands of other religions that have been around? What I don't get is that you have people' date=' very smart people, trying to find all of these scientific reasonings behind the bible when it was written in a time when those things were not known. I just don't see what makes Christianity so different from any other religion as just like any other religion it was a means of explaining the unknown.

 

Yes, we don't know everything. I would wager we know very little in fact. However my first thought isn't to jump to one ancient explanation of why the world is how it is. I mean essentially I think a lot of these theologists are just trying to find scientific meaning where there isn't and, quite honestly, shouldn't be.

 

I'm an athiest mostly because I don't like this idea of trying to stand behind one religion in what seems like a 1 in a million chance. Any one of these religions "could" be right, and how could you prove them wrong? I would much prefer it if people stopped worshiping what they think is there and focus on what is here and on finding what is out there. I think that being so hard-fast on an answer that must be true (in this case: a Christian god) isn't the way to really go about things.

 

So yeah, I just think the idea of Religion is outdated.

 

 

Also I wanted to say that these debates on the forums (or should I say "debates") are ridiculous. It's nothing but two parties trying to come up with the most off-the-wall metaphor to explain why their side is correct. In the end you guys are arguing about some things that we don't know for certain. [/quote']

 

I guess I didn't really have any specific questions, just wanted to know what some of the religious folk thought.

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Also I wanted to say that these debates on the forums (or should I say "debates") are ridiculous. It's nothing but two parties trying to come up with the most off-the-wall metaphor to explain why their side is correct. In the end you guys are arguing about some things that we don't know for certain.

 

There aren't two sides. Its not like all atheists are trying to assert that we know there is no god. All you know about an atheist is that he doesn't believe the god story. It says nothing about what he does believe. Atheism is really just a label for the system of thought that rejects a claim. There are more than two sides to this argument.


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What I don't get is what makes Christianity a more "believable" means of explaining the world compared to the thousands of other religions that have been around? What I don't get is that you have people, very smart people, trying to find all of these scientific reasonings behind the bible when it was written in a time when those things were not known. I just don't see what makes Christianity so different from any other religion as just like any other religion it was a means of explaining the unknown.

 

Yes, we don't know everything. I would wager we know very little in fact. However my first thought isn't to jump to one ancient explanation of why the world is how it is. I mean essentially I think a lot of these theologists are just trying to find scientific meaning where there isn't and, quite honestly, shouldn't be.

 

I'm an athiest mostly because I don't like this idea of trying to stand behind one religion in what seems like a 1 in a million chance. Any one of these religions "could" be right, and how could you prove them wrong? I would much prefer it if people stopped worshiping what they think is there and focus on what is here and on finding what is out there. I think that being so hard-fast on an answer that must be true (in this case: a Christian god) isn't the way to really go about things.

 

So yeah, I just think the idea of Religion is outdated.

 

Well, there are a couple good points you brought up.

 

I think that the intellectual who adheres to a religion (specifically) likely believes in the existence of a God, and chooses a specific religion based on whatever morality they can relate to best. For example, there are certain things about the bible that make a lot of sense - indeed I think almost everyone (atheists included) would agree that there are very many good lessons and morality imposed there.

 

You compare the morality imposed by the Koran, the old testament, and the new (Islam, Judaism and Christianity respectively) - I consider those the three major religions, since Hinduism and Buddhism are quite different.

 

To me, personally, no "holy book" is perfect - I don't believe I need to go into detail as I'm sure you're well aware of the flaws of each book, but I believe that out of the three, the new testament is the one which best sums up an ideal version of religion - with a loving, caring, and powerful God.

 

Now, it's easy to point out inconsistencies with all of these holy books, but the belief is, at least, that they were in fact written by men, with divine inspiration - many different men, in fact. Most criticisms of the bible tend to be leveled at the old testament, as the new testament is an enlightenment of the old. It stands to reason that there will be some minor discrepancies and contradictions throughout. However, there are also certain things about the new testament that make it seem odd it was the work of manipulators, exaggerators or liars.

 

My personal belief, as well, is that a religious (specifically Christan) society is a much more productive and moral one. A common example used is the minimal testing of atheist society and what it has thus far achieved, hence references to communist Russia. (It's interesting to note, however, that when this problem is brought up with atheists, they tend to me much more likely to sidestep the argument or present a straw man rather than actually debate it - see this gem.

 

A good read on this topic (if you're interested, as I'd expect someone hoping to obtain an objective view of the subject to be) is Peter Hitchen's The Rage Against God: http://www.amazon.com/Rage-Against-God-Atheism-Faith/dp/0310320313/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1297742667&sr=8-1

There's a very extensive chapter on the danger's wrought by godless states and the pseudo-religious cults often replacing religion.

 

 

Your definition of atheist appears to be that you aren't religious, but you don't necessarily believe there is no God. At the moment, personally, I'm not a practicing member of any religion - but I am a theist. I do believe God exists. There's a large difference between that and the specificity of a certain religion and the accompanying beliefs.


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What I don't get is what makes Christianity a more "believable" means of explaining the world compared to the thousands of other religions that have been around? What I don't get is that you have people, very smart people, trying to find all of these scientific reasonings behind the bible when it was written in a time when those things were not known. I just don't see what makes Christianity so different from any other religion as just like any other religion it was a means of explaining the unknown.

 

Yes, we don't know everything. I would wager we know very little in fact. However my first thought isn't to jump to one ancient explanation of why the world is how it is. I mean essentially I think a lot of these theologists are just trying to find scientific meaning where there isn't and, quite honestly, shouldn't be.

 

I'm an athiest mostly because I don't like this idea of trying to stand behind one religion in what seems like a 1 in a million chance. Any one of these religions "could" be right, and how could you prove them wrong? I would much prefer it if people stopped worshiping what they think is there and focus on what is here and on finding what is out there. I think that being so hard-fast on an answer that must be true (in this case: a Christian god) isn't the way to really go about things.

 

So yeah, I just think the idea of Religion is outdated.

 

Well, there are a couple good points you brought up.

 

I think that the intellectual who adheres to a religion (specifically) likely believes in the existence of a God, and chooses a specific religion based on whatever morality they can relate to best. For example, there are certain things about the bible that make a lot of sense - indeed I think almost everyone (atheists included) would agree that there are very many good lessons and morality imposed there.

 

You compare the morality imposed by the Koran, the old testament, and the new (Islam, Judaism and Christianity respectively) - I consider those the three major religions, since Hinduism and Buddhism are quite different.

 

To me, personally, no "holy book" is perfect - I don't believe I need to go into detail as I'm sure you're well aware of the flaws of each book, but I believe that out of the three, the new testament is the one which best sums up an ideal version of religion - with a loving, caring, and powerful God.

 

Now, it's easy to point out inconsistencies with all of these holy books, but the belief is, at least, that they were in fact written by men, with divine inspiration - many different men, in fact. Most criticisms of the bible tend to be leveled at the old testament, as the new testament is an enlightenment of the old. It stands to reason that there will be some minor discrepancies and contradictions throughout. However, there are also certain things about the new testament that make it seem odd it was the work of manipulators, exaggerators or liars.

 

My personal belief, as well, is that a religious (specifically Christan) society is a much more productive and moral one. A common example used is the minimal testing of atheist society and what it has thus far achieved, hence references to communist Russia. (It's interesting to note, however, that when this problem is brought up with atheists, they tend to me much more likely to sidestep the argument or present a straw man rather than actually debate it - see this gem.

 

The effects of religions on social behavior has nothing to do with the claim of physical existence of something. Even if the most prosperous society in the world was 100% atheist, I would not even attempt to justify my claims with this because it is completely irrelevant. Reality doesn't depend on whats good for society.

 

A good read on this topic (if you're interested, as I'd expect someone hoping to obtain an objective view of the subject to be) is Peter Hitchen's The Rage Against God: http://www.amazon.com/Rage-Against-God-Atheism-Faith/dp/0310320313/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1297742667&sr=8-1

There's a very extensive chapter on the danger's wrought by godless states and the pseudo-religious cults often replacing religion.

 

 

Your definition of atheist appears to be that you aren't religious, but you don't necessarily believe there is no God. At the moment, personally, I'm not a practicing member of any religion - but I am a theist. I do believe God exists. There's a large difference between that and the specificity of a certain religion and the accompanying beliefs.

 

Sure, there are differences. But there is not a difference in the strength of your claim. There are many philosophical differences but you still believe an explanation that has no evidence.


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Your definition of atheist appears to be that you aren't religious, but you don't necessarily believe there is no God. At the moment, personally, I'm not a practicing member of any religion - but I am a theist. I do believe God exists. There's a large difference between that and the specificity of a certain religion and the accompanying beliefs.

 

Thanks. I consider myself to not believe in a God (or at the very least I find the idea incredibly unlikely) so that's why I just stick with the term "Atheist". It's good to get some opinions from someone else though who is level headed about the whole thing.

 

 

My personal belief, as well, is that a religious (specifically Christan) society is a much more productive and moral one. A common example used is the minimal testing of atheist society and what it has thus far achieved, hence references to communist Russia. (It's interesting to note, however, that when this problem is brought up with atheists, they tend to me much more likely to sidestep the argument or present a straw man rather than actually debate it - see this gem.

 

I'm not totally sure how good of an example communist Russia is in terms of an atheist society. Of course it's kind of hard when it really is the only example, and it's also sort of difficult when there are a lot more people who adhere to some religion than who are atheist. Finding a good test sample without having a dictatorship-like level of censoring free religion (or lack of it) is difficult and impossible currently.

 

That being said I don't think that Religion should be totally gotten rid of more so than some societies need to place less of an emphasis on it. I don't think the US, for example, should place such an emphasis on Christianity. Yes, you can practice (or not practice) whatever religion you want here; but if you were to be running for president you damn well better be Christian. Of course this is more of a public view thing than anything else, I think that some of the more... outspoken members of religions need to understand that while good morals can come from religion it also is not the only place they come from.

 

 

At the moment, personally, I'm not a practicing member of any religion - but I am a theist. I do believe God exists. There's a large difference between that and the specificity of a certain religion and the accompanying beliefs.

 

This is kind of the thing I'd wish more people did. Honestly the thing I am against are the actual religious groups. You can believe in God if you want, after all we don't know one way or another. If you feel strongly about it (just as I feel strongly about there being no God) than it's totally fine, neither of us are wrong because neither of us know.

 

What I don't like are groups who use religion as a means to scare people into acting right or as a means to shun those who are different than them. (either by being homosexual or of a different religion). I just think that you should believe what you believe in and not be so fixated on one version or ideal of "God" or what your religion tells you is right or wrong. I firmly believe that people are good natured without being instinctively threatened by the ever-looming thought of a "hell". I just wish that people would follow their own moral compass rather than one laid out for them by a religion.

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This is kind of the thing I'd wish more people did. Honestly the thing I am against are the actual religious groups. You can believe in God if you want, after all we don't know one way or another. If you feel strongly about it (just as I feel strongly about there being no God) than it's totally fine, neither of us are wrong because neither of us know.

 

Do you also feel this way about other unknown information about the physical world?

 

What causes the force of gravity? Cause I'm going to claim that it is tiny tiny men who have telekinetic powers. Nobody knows so theres no problem with my claim.


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