Cyclist wrote:
The truth is, 1)You can not prove that God does not exist so your assumption that he does not is just a theory. 2)You can not prove the theory of evolution as science to date has not been able to create life from inorganic material and the problem is that if you can’t get something from nothing, it’s pointless thinking you can accurately explain the next step. Juggle the figures any way you like, but without a Creator you are not going to get anything, let alone everything. That is a HUGE problem, and, 3)To discount ancient history, manuscripts, archeology, similarity in oral and written traditions (many cultures have a flood story and a creation story that are similar in nature)is just ignorant.

johnhead1) I do not bear the burden of disproving the existence of an entity which by design is unfalsifiable.  My assumption that your god is entirely man-made is not a theory.  Actual theories are well-substantiated explanations of some aspect of the natural world.  Your god is super-natural and therefore outside the bounds of theoretical explanations.  My non-belief in your god is a conclusion founded upon the complete absence of anything remotely resembling evidence pointing to your god being real.  You have come to the same conclusion regarding every other god ever claimed throughout the history of man-kind.  You are an atheist with regard to literally thousands of other deities.  When you finally get around to understanding the real reason you lack a belief in those gods, you will understand why I lack a belief in yours.

2) The theory of evolution has nothing to do with the creation of life from inorganic material.  You are confusing ‘evolution’ with ‘abiogenesis’ because you are scientifically ignorant.  Evolution is a FACT; organisms change over time.  That’s all evolution is, change over time.  The theory of Evolution by Random Mutation and Natural Selection explains the mechanism by which life evolves and branches into many different species over millions of years.

a. Your assertion that without a Creator you cannot get ‘something from nothing’ is a fallacious argument from ignorance.

b. You claim that we cannot “get anything, let alone everything” must also apply to this supposed creator.  This phantom Creator is ‘something’ is it not, and ‘something’ cannot come from ‘nothing’, so what created your asserted Creator?

3) The fact that “many cultures have a flood story and a creation story that are similar” does not lead to the conclusion that a man was instructed to build a gigantic floating zoo, holding every land animal on the planet, floating for 40 days and nights, before landing on a mountain top, after which he repopulated the world via incest.  That you insist on claiming your specific myth is what happened is ludicrous to say the least and is what is actually ignorant.

Cyclist wrote:

1. No science has been able to prove any viable theory for origin of life. Assumptions have to be made that can not be proven by any science.
2. Random mutation and natural selection do cause change within species but do not cause an organism to change species. That is impossible.
3. Where did the very first organic material come from.
4. What you consider fact is simply your belief in someone’s take on trying to explain things like God or no God, origin of life, age of the universe, etc.
You’ve drank just as much koolaid as I, just a different flavor.

 

johnhead1) Again, I’m forced to weave though your misapplication of concepts. There is no ‘proof’ or absolute ‘truth’ in science. The closest we get are facts, which are indisputable observations. A scientific theory summarizes a hypothesis or group of hypotheses that have been supported with repeated testing. A theory is valid as long as there is no evidence to dispute it.

What I was explaining to you was the difference between ‘abiogenesis’ and ‘evolution via natural selection’. We may not know the exact process by which the first self-replicating molecules arose but we do this; the elements which compose life on earth are abundant both on this planet and the galaxy and, there is nothing in chemistry which would prevent self-replicating molecules from arising on their own.

Your claim that because you cannot fathom life arising via natural processes it must be a supernatural sky wizard playing a cosmic game of the Sims is just a special pleading argument in addition to an argument from ignorance. You assert as a general rule that the ‘something’ which we know exists cannot come from ‘nothing’ yet you except your god from your own rule.

2) Random mutation and natural selection do not cause organisms to change species, correct but that’s not what the theory says. The theory says that over time species diverge via genetic drift over successive generations. They eventually drift so far that they become two different species.

3) The first ‘organic material’ which composes life (carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, etc.) was produced inside the core of a massive star which blew itself apart billions of years ago. You really should brush up on your cosmology.

4) What I consider facts are observable, testable, and repeatable. I believe facts because of those attributes. Your god, like every god, is neither observable or testable. Because I base my belief on objective evidence there is no need for koolaid, someone take is irrelevant unless it matches experiment and observation. This is another attempt to pull my position down to your level because your fully realize your position is untenable, it is a product of wishful thinking and a willingness to become convinced that imaginary beings are real.

 

Cyclist wrote:
1. Give me an example of a species that experienced genetic drift over a period of time to create two different species.
2. So this massive star which blew apart billions of years ago produced the material which composes life. Where did the massive star come from?
3. Explain why your observable facts have so many holes. Since explosions cause disorder and chaos, how could a Big Bang bring about order to the complex level as to create life? If said order did come into being by a massive explosion billions of years ago, why have we never been able to observe a self replicating organism form by itself?
4. If all the galaxies were created as a result of a massive explosion billions of years ago, why do the closer galaxies have a higher degree of red shift than the further galaxies which are blue, suggesting that they are moving toward us as opposed to away from us?
I’m sure you will use big words to try and explain how stupid I am, try not to condescend, just answer.

 

johnheadYES! Now you are catching on. You’re asking for evidence. The absence of knowledge is not stupidity. Stupidity is the inability to obtain and grasp knowledge. I did not always know these facts either, I do not think you are stupid.

1) EXAMPLE: Three species of wildflowers called goatsbeards were introduced to the United States from Europe shortly after the turn of the century. Within a few decades their populations expanded and began to encounter one another in the American West. Whenever mixed populations occurred, the species interbred (hybridizing) producing sterile hybrid offspring. Suddenly, in the late forties two new species of goatsbeard appeared near Pullman, Washington. Although the new species were similar in appearance to the hybrids, they produced fertile offspring. The evolutionary process had created a separate species that could reproduce but not mate with the goatsbeard plants from which it had evolved.

2) The massive star came about when, under the force of gravity, hydrogen gas was drawn together toward a single point. The rise in pressure lead to a rise in temperature until, at 3 million kelvin, 5.4 million Fahrenheit, hydrogen atoms began fusing into the helium atoms. Helium is fused into heavier and heavier elements until iron at which point the star blows apart; iron taking in energy when fused as opposed to giving it off.

3) The Big Bang is not what brought about order to the complex level we see today. It was just the initial expansion of space-time. What we see today the the result of 13.7 billion years of contact interaction between gravity and electromagnetism. I don’t know if you’ve looked at some of the Hubble images but the cosmos is far from orderly.

4) We have not seen a self replicating organism form by itself because such an event occurs on time scales larger than the history of the human race. Though we have not seen it, we know of possible ways it could have happen which do no violate the known laws of physics. In a universe as vast as the one in which we live it appears life was bound to happen somewhere.

5) You have it backwards, the galaxies where are further away are more red shifted. This is called Hubble’s Law and gives rise to something called Hubble’s Constant. The universe is in fact expanding faster and faster by the second. There are some galaxies like Andromeda which are moving toward us, gravity has overcome expansion with regard to these.

 

Cyclist wrote:
1. Still a wildflower, not a different species.
2. Where did the hydrogen and the helium come from?
3. So gravity and electromagnetism created life?
4. So you can’t prove it. Though a mathematical possibility, it is unlikely I will ever win the Tour de France.
5. in an article called The Evolution of the Universe, John P. Huchra and Margaret J. Geller tell us that: “There appears to be a relatively random distribution of small distant blue galaxies,” and that “Each square degree of sky contains more than 300,000 blue galaxies”.
The more of yours and others writings I read, I realize how much you really don’t know. You base your belief on assumptions which you can not prove. Just like I base my beliefs on assumptions I can not prove. The difference is where we look for our answers.

 

johnhead1) Wildflowers come in many different species.  A species is often defined as a group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring.  The flowers in the example could not interbreed because their genetic makeup had ‘changed over time’ <- EVOLVED to the point where the had diverged into two new species of wildflower.  That happened in less than 100 years.  Do you not think that larger changes cannot take place over millions of years?

2) The hydrogen of our baby universe was the result of charged subatomic particles pairing up to form natural atoms around 380,000 years of cooling following cosmic inflation.  Hydrogen = 1 Proton + 1 Electron  It doesn’t get much more simple than that.

3) Gravity and Electromagnetism created life in the sense that without these forces there would be nothing heavier than hydrogen and chemistry would not exist.  Gravity pulls matter together and matter interacts with other matter according to the laws of electromagnetism.  They are only two of the four fundamental forces which we know to govern the universe, the other two being the Strong and Weak Nuclear Forces.

4) Science is not used to prove anything, proof exists the form of observable facts and mathematics.  What I keep trying to tell you is that there is nothing in nature which prevents self-replicating molecules from forming and that’s life is at its most basic level.

You laugh at the possibility of life arising via natural processes but turn around and with complete conviction assert that a magic invisible being produced life by merely TALKING.  Are you serious?

Science doesn’t know and has made no claim to know the exact means by which life arose naturally.  We may never know how it happened because we only have one planet where we know life exists and we can’t travel back in time.  That fact does not give you licenses to assert, in the absence of knowledge, whatever fairytale notion best appeals to you.

5) The quote you cite having to do with blue galaxies refuting the big bang was cherry picked by creationist and has already been accounted for by cosmology.

An observer at a lower gravitational potential than a source (“downhill”) will observe radiation to be blueshifted to shorter wavelengths.  This is a natural consequence of conservation of energy and mass–energy equivalence, and was confirmed experimentally in 1959 with the Pound–Rebka experiment.  Gravitational blueshift contributes to cosmic microwave background (CMB) anisotropy via the Sachs–Wolfe effect: when a gravitational well evolves while a photon is passing, the amount of blueshift on approach will differ from the amount of gravitational redshift as it leaves the region.

How much I don’t know is quite a lot and I will admit it.  Everything I have ever read by religious people tells me that they actually think they can know everything!

You are right about one thing, we look in different places for answers alright.  Where I look uses observation and experiment, where you look uses an old dusty book full of magic stories.

“ANTI-ATHEIST” wrote:when it comes to exposing your mistakes it bothers you does it not? You guys are as FAITHFUL to your religion of non religion as we are our true religion otherwise you would not be on here acting as missinaries and debating.. If you cant accept your dogma as one of hate and feelings of insecurity caused by pareents who negelected you in your formulative years then that is a handicap you must bear. Yeah i know you became an atheist when you got older and could reason, another way of getting the attention you never received as a child. You feel by being different you will gain your place in our world.Where will you go when you die and I am not reffering to heaven or hell. Unless you choose cremation how can you allow yourself to be laid to rest in a cemetery full of religios dead and monuments.it is what it is . requires just as much FAITH as do any other of our recognized religions.accept it and live with it.

 

johnheadIt would be to my benefit to have my mistakes pointed out to me.  How else would I correct them.  Please, by all means ‘expose’ me but please do so by citing evidence or a flaw in logic and not appeals to supernatural authority.

You dishonestly and intentionally confuse the meaning to different words; the meaning of ‘faithful’ with the religious meaning of ‘faith’.  I am ‘faithful’ to my wife insomuch as ‘faithful’ means trustworthy and dedicated.  That is entirely different from having ‘faith’ in my wife.  First, I know my wife is a real person with a real personality.  The ‘faith’, by which I mean ‘trust’, I have in my wife is based upon the evidence gathered during the totality of my past experience.

The type of ‘faith’ possessed by religious people like yourself is blind, meaning that one must accept, in the absence of evidence, all the tenants and claims of your religion and defend those tenants and claims against all evidence to the contrary.

We are not here as missionaries and science is not a religion. We do not require nor demand you blindly accept the scientific discoveries of the past few hundred years.  We do not demand your blind obedience to anything and we will never assert that you will be punished in some imagined after life for failing to educate yourself.

That being said, we will demand that you provide evidence for your claims.  We will refuse to submit the one think that separates us from the other animals, reason, to your invisible, mute, and apathetic celestial dictator.  We will not abandon our reason and take on the mind forged manacle of your religion in exchange for some false promise of immortality.

There is no dogma of non-belief, dogma is a belief, but this is you being dishonest again.  We do not hate you.  Insecurity actually leads to delusions of having a cosmic babysitter, like Jesus, not atheism.  My parents have always and still love me unconditionally.  They provided for my every need until I was an adult.  Attacking me and making false assertions about my childhood adds not one iota of weight to your belief in some magic sky wizard.  You could be 100% correct in your accusation and at the end of the day your god would still have no evidence of being real or having any measurable effect upon reality.

We didn’t choose to stop believing to get your attention and I already have a place in this world absent my position regarding religion.  I at least stopped believing because I realized that when stopped giving religion a pass regarding reasoning skills I use for everything else in my daily life there was no reason to believe it any longer.  It’s that simple.

The phrase ‘religion of non-religion’ is as absurd now as it was the first time you posted it.  It is a gleaming example of an oxymoron.  Likewise, not believing something cannot require faith because faith is used to justify the very thing atheism lacks.

My goodness does your dishonesty know no bounds?

ANTI-ATHEIST wrote:
DOES ANY ONE KNOW IF LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES HAVE A RULE OR BAN AGAINST HIRING ATHEISTS. IT WOULD SEEM THEY SHOULD BECAUSE I CAN ENVISION OTHER OFFICERS BEING UNCOMFORTABLE AROUND THEM AND NOT TRUSTING THEM IN A SITUATION THAT MAY INVOLVE COVER MY BACK.
IT WOULD ALSO SEEM THAT AN ATHEIST OFFICER COULD NOT DEAL WITH MANY OF THE CRISIS SITUATIONS THEY ENCOUNTER. FOR EXAMPLE. THERE IS A VERY BAD AUTO ACCIDENT AND SEVERAL PEOPLE INJURED BADLY ONE OF WHOM IS NEAR DEATH.
HOW WOULD THIS OFFICER RESPOND IF SOMEONE ASKED HIM TO PRAY WITH US.
LEGITIMATE QUESTIONS. LETS HAVE SOME COMMENTS

Was it your intent to appear to be yelling your post or did you miss the lesson in school with regard to capitalization?

FYI: Any policy discriminating against someone based upon their religious preference would be a violation of standing federal laws.

What entertained me more were the fatuous examples you gave in support of religious discrimination. Let’s look at these.

Reason 1) Other officers would be uncomfortable around them and not trust them in certain situations.

Funny how that same excuse was used back when ignorant people didn’t want blacks hired as cops but that was TOTALLY different you would say. Other than this being a projection of how you feel onto everyone else, people are hired for jobs based upon their ability and prior work experience; not for the sole reason that they happen to agree with your mythological beliefs. Some people are uncomfortable around those of a different ethnicity; we call these people racist and recognize that how they feel is the result of ignorance and fear. You are uncomfortable around people who do not dabble in the fantasy role-playing of Christianity; we call people like you religious bigots because how you feel is likewise a result of ignorance and fear.

Reason 2) AN ATHEIST OFFICER COULD NOT DEAL WITH MANY OF THE CRISIS SITUATIONS THEY ENCOUNTER.

And you know this how? The fact is you don’t. Non-belief in some Santa Clause for grown-ups does not preclude one from possessing empathy or acting courageously. Let us address your absurd example of praying at an accident where someone is near death. A religious person like you might well pray, all the while doing jack shit for the injured person while they lay dying in a mangled car. While you are praying, the officer who understands that incantations and laying-on of hands is pointless, would be assisting with things that actually matter, like stabilizing the victim’s neck, ensuring an open airway, preventing excess blood loss; you know, the kind of medically proven shit that actually saves lives.

This doesn’t mean you can’t hold hands and stand around talking to yourself with your eyes closes, just stay out the way and let the professionals do their job. Don’t worry, we understand that after the person makes a full recovery you’ll forget about the Fire/Rescue team and EMTs that busted their ass to keep the victim alive and simply claim that Jesus did it all because, after all, that’s what you asked him to do isn’t it?

Finally, your question isn’t legitimate, it is an ignorant question posed by a bigoted ignorant person. I pity you enough to give a legitimate answer but only because I wish to expose your bigotry.

Auntie-Atheist wrote:
Ok Mr Smart ass I will give you the opportunity to respond to the post no 1606. You seem to like to stick your nose in.
Challenge . No Bullshit. Read the post and respond. As I said I don’t think either of you can relate to life experiences. You are lost in your lala land of theory and lies.
[QUESTION IN POST 1606]

Anti-Atheist wrote:
Ask yourself the question. Would non-believers fair better under Christianity and civilized law or islam and sharia law?

johnheadThe premise of your question is flawed. The first option is self-contradictory.

Christian religious law is not civilized. Burning witches, stoning unruly kids, executing gay people, stoning adulterers, etc is not in any sense of the word civilized.

We must first separate your false claim that current law is Christian and note the true nature of Christian religions law. Only then can everyone see that an atheist like me would fair no better under Christian religious law than I would under sharia. We are lucky that a majority of the founding fathers were well aware of the divisive nature of religion and set about founding a nation which follows neither of your options. Our laws are secular and our government functions with the principle that religion shall not dictate government policy and government shall not establish or otherwise endorse a religion.

“Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.”-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814

Working for the Lord wrote:

The men who wrote the bible were men used by God to put down what God wanted us to know. It’s accepted historically that the resurrection must of happened because of the eyewitnesses which included skeptics, people who were the enemy of Jesus and those who were his friends and the apostles themselves. Jews did not believe in a resurrected Jesus, they believed in an earthly kingdom. The apostles believed beyond all predisposed facts of the Jewish belief, and were even willing to die for him. The miracles and exorcism helped to confirm who he said he was.

johnheadWorking for the Lord,

“The men who wrote the bible were men used by God” <- Bare assertion fallacy

“It’s accepted historically that the resurrection must of happened” <- False attribution fallacy

“eyewitnesses which included skeptics” <- Who are these “skeptics” and what is your source?

“were even willing to die for him” <- Thousands of people have been willing to die for multiple religions, that does not make them true.

“The miracles and exorcism helped to confirm who he said he was.” – Circular reasoning. The Bible says miracles occurred and we should believe this because it is in the Bible. It is written that Mohammad performed over 1000 miracles. Does this confirm that he was the true prophet of god? No.  Does this confirm that Islam is the one true faith?  No.

 

Working for the Lord wrote:

Life as we know it happens only to be approx. 11,000 years old. If you count the genealogies of the beginig of ceation to now this is what you will come up with, not millions or billions.

johnheadYou base your belief that life began 11,000 years ago on the genealogies of the bible, so how does your Bible account for fossils?

Were all the craters on the moon created in the past 11,000 years?

There is a satellite galaxy next to our Milky Way called The Large Magellanic Cloud. This collection of stars is around 160,000 light-years away from us and yet we can see it with the naked eye from the southern hemisphere. If everything was kicked off 11,000 years ago then we shouldn’t see the light from this dwarf galaxy for another 149,000 years, and yet we do.

The closest spiral galaxy like ours, Andromeda, is 2.5 million light-years away and we can see it.

In 2009 astronomers spotted the most distant object yet confirmed in the universe – a self-destructing star that exploded 13.1 billion light years from Earth. It detonated just 630 million years after the big bang, around the end of the cosmic “dark ages”, when the first stars and galaxies were lighting up space.  To gauge the object’s distance, astronomers measure how much the object’s light has been stretched, or reddened, by the expansion of space. That burst had a redshift of 8.2, more distant than the previous GRB record holder, which lay at a redshift of 6.7.

I can continue to give you a mountain of evidence which shows beyond a doubt that we live in a cosmos Billions of years old. The ignorant superstitious men who wrote your bible had no way of knowing what we now know. They had no clue about physics or biology or chemistry. YOUR BIBLE IS DEAD WRONG. I’m sorry to break it to you but so long as you continue to persist in stultifying nonsense and superstition you will never know that reality is far more amazing than made up stories of the bible.

We are not the center of all things -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pzKZb3qHyXk

Working for the Lord wrote:

Atheist uses tools like science and the thought that when you die you simply cease to exsist, so no need to worry about judgment day when one dies, clever but wrong.

johnheadWTF does this even mean? Atheism says nothing about what happens when you die. This is just another example of your complete misunderstanding of what you are trying to attack.

Speaking for myself, I would have to say that there is no evidence which points to an afterlife (magical religious books are not evidence). We know that what we perceive as consciousness depends upon chemical processes within a physical brain. We know this because we can alter our perceptions and consciousness by altering the chemicals in our brain. There is no evidence or proposed method whereby consciousness can continue in the absence of a living brain. Essentially when your body and brain die, you’re gone as well. Now don’t fret over that fact, you won’t know you are dead. You won’t know anything in fact because knowing requires a brain in the first place. Imagine what it was like for the 13 billion years before you were born, you didn’t exist then and you will return to that after you die.

The idea of consciousness beyond physical death is a novel idea. Who wouldn’t love to fly around as a ghost and screw with the living? I for one would get the hell off this planet and explore the galaxy. I’d love to see the massive black hole at the center of our galaxy, witness a supernova up close, or the birth of new star. But alas, just because I think the idea sounds nice and perhaps dislike the idea of having a limited existence, I refuse to lie to myself and pretend that I know I will become immortal after I die. If you call that clever then I guess I’m clever. At least I’m not deluded.

gotgun1794[1]The act of one mentally disturbed monster at an elementary school has given gun-ban advocates more tragedy to shamelessly exploit in their never-ending fallacious argument that taking weapons from the peaceful and the law-abiding will magically stop the mentally deranged from killing innocent people.  The following is my response to a disingenuous question from just such a anti-gun advocate.

helpfull wrote:

How many guns are enough for one individual? Do you have a gun shrine in your home? An altar for ammo?

I know you’re being disingenuous with your question but in order to give you a genuine response I need you to answer a question for me.

How many guns would it take to piss you off over the fact that I was buying that many guns? Now take that number add 5 more guns along with about 20 or 30 so-called high-capacity magazines and you have your answer.

As far as ammo, again, I need to know much would I need to get my hands on to make you cry like a bitch over the fact that I had that much ammunition, then you would have my answer.

Now, after all the guns and all the ammo had been delivered to my house I would make a special point to build a shrine dedicated to people like you for the sole reason photographing it and mailing to you for educational purposes.

Included with the photo of my newly erected gun shrine would be a copy of the US Constitution and Bill of Rights, printed in large type so as to make it easy for your ignorant ass to read it. Amendment II on the Bill of Rights would be highlighted and circled with a quote from Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis written on the back which reads; “Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficent… The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.”

Yea, that’s what I would do.

coldhands[1]

Working for the Lord wrote:
Fine tuning requires a designer who has the skills of being greater than the design itself, which would be God. Random chance is so off the wall to be even considered as a way of life to have come into existence.

johnheadWorking for the Lord,

Firstly, the claim that the universe is fine tuned needs to be demonstrated. Could it have been tuned some other way? If so, how would you demonstrate that? As far as we know the cosmos simply is the way it is and life appears to have adapted to fit a niche on the surface of one of the trillions of planets which have formed within it.

The error in your argument lies with your premise that the universe is “fine tuned” for life. Suppose I showed you a map of the United Stated and said “Is it not amazing that the Mississippi river was ‘fine tuned’ to exactly match the state borders so perfectly. It must have been designed because a river matching the state borders via random chance is so off the wall to even be considered. The designer who had the skills must have been greater than the design itself, therefore God did it.”

You would look at me like an idiot, kind of like I’m looking at you now. Obviously the borders match the river because the state borders were formed after the river. Likewise, life on earth appears so well suited to the planet because life has had 4.7 billion years to adapt to our planet.

As far as your assertion of chance, the probability of life arising on Earth is exactly 1:1 or 100%; we are here now after all.

If the universe needs a creator to explain the fine tuned order of everything, and this creator you label god obviously possesses order, what super-duper god maker created your god? Surely your god could not have come into being by random chance, that is so off the wall to be even considered.

 

Working for the Lord wrote:

My God didn’t come from random chance, he has always existed. God who is all knowing, all powerful. The first God being as I described is sufficient, only would man need more than one God, or at least think he does. This world could not have been in existence forever as we would have completely exhausted all energy by now.

 

johnheadWorking for the Lord,

You assert that the universe must have been created because it has order which could not have come about randomly. When asked what created your orderly god you simply assert that your god has always existed.

You are making a fallacious appeal to special pleading, a spurious argument where favorable details are included or unfavorable details are excluded by alleging a need to apply additional considerations without proper criticism of these considerations. Essentially, you are attempting to present your god as the one exemption to the very rule you use to make your original argument, without justifying the exemption.

If your God can just “always exist” then what is prevents reality from “always existing”. Conversely, if reality could not have “always existed” and your god is real, what justifies your god being exempted?

You assert your god is sufficient but sufficiency does not imply necessity. There may be a first cause but that cause may not necessarily be an entity remotely like you describe.

Your claim that your god is all-knowing and all-powerful is a fallacious bare assertion. These are attributes which you need to demonstrate. You may not simply start with God is ______ and move on from there without justifying exactly how you know God is _______.

This world has not been in existence forever, in fact the history of the cosmos until now was 2/3 over before this world came into being. We are far from exhausting all of “our” energy, the star which provides all “our” energy has been fusing 700 million tons of Hydrogen into 695 million tons of Helium every second since it formed and will continue burn for at least another 5 Billion years.

Cyclist wrote:

But see, there in lies the problem…unbelief in something does not make it untrue. Lets say I abandoned my belief in God, my abandonment of belief does not make him any less real.

Lets say for example, I decided man never went to the moon, that it was all a hoax. Does that make it any less real that they did?

Truthfully, you can not prove God doesn’t exist any more than I can prove that he does. You can offer why you believe he does not, but you can’t offer fact based evidence that shows he does not. I can offer why I believe he does exist but can not offer tangible fact based evidence that he does.

johnheadCyclist,

Correct, non-belief does not equal non-existence. I never said that it did and atheism, despite what many misinformed people may say and what you may have been told, is NOT the assertion that gods do not exist. That position is called anti-theism.

Correct, your abandonment of belief in gods will have no effect on whether or not gods actually exist. Your abandonment of belief does not make your god any less real. Likewise, your current belief in no way makes your god actually real.

Correct, if you told me that you disbelieve the claim that man walked on the moon you would be contesting a positive claim; that man did walk on the moon. The burden of proof would be upon the person making the claim. Let’s say I am the one making the claim. I could point you to the mountains of evidence like moon rocks, photos, and even video. Fake you say! OK, I could point a laser at one of the three retro reflectors that astronauts left on the surface and show how reflected laser light can be detected by a photo multiplier. I could even show you images taken recently by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter here which show the actual landing sites and left over crap from 40 years ago. The last thing I would do is tell you to have faith. There is no need for faith because we have evidence.

(Now if I told you man walked on Mars, I would have no evidence for that claim and you would be justified in not believing that claim)

I cannot prove your god doesn’t exist, but then again nobody bears any burden to disprove any claim. There have been more than a thousand different gods which have been worshiped and claimed to exist throughout recorded history. Should you be expected to disprove all of those gods? NO. Does your inability to disprove Thor or Oden mean that belief in Thor or Oden is justified? Certainly NOT.

Imagine I told you that there was a teapot in orbit around mars, you would have no way to disprove that. Would that inability to disprove my claim justify some belief that a teapot was orbiting Mars? NO. The default position with regard to any existential claim is to disbelieve until that claim is demonstrated to be true.

Going back to what I said in my previous post, I am not claiming there are no gods. All I am stating is that the theist has not met their burden of proof and there is no evidence yet discovered which can demonstrate that gods either exist or are required for the cosmos to operate. This is the null hypothesis, which by definition can never be proven.

If you can offer a good reason why you believe then let’s examine your reasoning for any flaws. Have at it.

According to Reason,

I freely admit to not being as knowledgeable about the whys and how’s of my beliefs, as you are about yours, you have obviously put much time and study into what you believe, where as I have just accepted what I believe to be true.

Having said that, I can not separate my belief in the Bible and God from my views on creation and how everything came to be. In other words, I look at everything through “God glasses”. In doing that I have automatically accepted the bibles account of creation.

Secularism is as foreign to me as Christianity seems to you. I don’t mean that to sound flip, we just have different world views. I do enjoy our conversations though, they challenge me and make me think.

– Cyclist

johnheadCyclist,

You pretty much summed it up in your first sentence. My beliefs are based on much time and study and not simply accepting something a priori.

If you cannot separate your belief in God from the biblical views concerning creation then maybe you should consider separating yourself from a belief in gods. I know, its shocking to even consider what with hell and all but that BS goes away when you begin basing what you believe upon empirical data and the rejection of magical unsubstantiated superstition.

Those “God glasses” are keeping you from learning about reality. Imagine someone rejecting chemistry because he could not separate himself from his belief in alchemy or rejected astronomy because he could not separate himself from his belief in astrology. That person would be insisting upon being willfully ignorant of how the universe actually was, he would be rejecting reality in favor of fantasy.

Why would you purposefully choose to believe a story with absolutely no evidence to support it while rejecting scientific conclusions supported by mountains of the stuff. It’s insane that anyone would limit their minds in such a way.

You also have a misunderstanding of secularism as it is not antithetical to Christianity. Secularism relates to the principle of separation of government institutions, and the persons mandated to represent the State, from religious institutions and religious dignitaries. It is not impossible to be both a Christian and a Secularist, that is to say someone who believes in the precepts of Christ’s redemption on the cross, and that such belief should be kept separate from acts of government.

We do have different world views, no argument there, but you do realize that whereas you ignore evidence and reason in favor of what your holy book says, I discard anything which is contrary to or unsupported by evidence and reason.

I think you are being self-contradictory with your last sentence. You write that I am challenging you to think but by that same token you just admitted that you limit your own thinking via “god glasses”.

If the Bible is true and your god is real then there should be evidence which bears that out. You are being dishonest with yourself when you start with a conclusion that “X is true” and proceed to automatically reject anything suggesting otherwise simply because “X is true”.

The process of rational thought involves first admitting your ignorance; “I do not know if X is true or false”, sometimes called the null hypothesis. Then setting out to find evidence pointing in either direction and not moving in that direction until such evidence is found, no matter how strongly you may want one direction over the other.

To be honest, if you strip out all the evil shit in the Bible and stick with just the Sunday school kid version of a god who is nothing but caring , loving, and wanting of the very best for everyone, I might want that to be true. However, even if that was all the Bible said I could not simply accept it as true in the absence of reason and evidence. I know the universe does not exist according to my wants and desires and wishing for something to be true does not justify my pretending that it actually is.

 

Irrational wrote:
I do not believe in werewolves. Therefore I spend NO time arguing their existence with those who do believe. I spend No time arguing the fallacy of werewolf mythology, discussing werewolf legends, etc. because I am not emotionally invested in the argument. I merely pointed out the fact that you are emotionally very heavily invested in convincing believers in God that they are believing a myth. Your care is irrational. And yes, you do have faith. Faith that your belief in nothing is correct, that nothing can be proven. You have a tremendous faith in yourself, for you appear to assume that you know absolutely everything there is to know, including the impossibility of God’s existence. I am not that arrogant.

———

Irrational,

I lack a belief in werewolves as well but have you ever asked yourself why? I think we can agree that the reason neither of us believe in werewolves, also known as lycanthrope, is due to the fact that there is no evidence in support of the claim. In the absence of EVIDENCE we as rational adults would dismiss outright that there are humans with the ability to shape shift into a wolf or an anthropomorphic wolf-like creature, either purposely or after being placed under a curse and/or lycanthropic affliction via a bite or scratch from a werewolf, or some other means.

There is a HUGE difference between my want to convince people that belief in supernatural deities like Jesus is unfounded and my lack of want to convince people that belief in werewolves is unfounded. There is no such thing as a Church of Lycanthrope, nor are their adherents to such a church attempting to shoe horn their belief in Lycanthrope into civil government, or public schools, or public policy decisions. Nobody is being denied employment because they lack a belief in Lycanthrope. Nobody has to hide their disbelief in Lycanthrope from their supervisors for fear of discrimination. Children are not being told they will burn in hell for lacking belief in Lycanthrope or having their genitals mutilated at birth because they feel the god of Lycanthrope commands it.

So you see, the REASON you and I do not spend time arguing the fallacy of werewolf mythology and discussing werewolf legends is because it is unnecessary. EVERYONE knows it is a myth. The same cannot be said for Christianity, which is also founded upon myth and legend. Therefore my “emotional invested”, as you call it, is completely rational and your argument to the contrary is false. If there were such a thing as the Church of Lycanthrope you can your bet your ass I would be speaking out against such BS.

Now let me address your misunderstanding of what it means to have FAITH. Faith is a dogmatic belief in SOMETHING. I do not have a “belief in nothing”, which is oxymoronic at any rate. Rather my beliefs are founded upon evidence and reason. Your assertion that “I assume to know absolutely everything there is to know, including the impossibility of God’s existence” is utterly fatuous and a lie. I never made any such claim; you simply assume that that is my position out of ignorance and prejudice.

So what is my actual position? It is NOT a belief in “nothing” like you incorrectly assume. My position is that of the NULL hypothesis, which means that in the absence of evidence one way or the other the only reasonable position is that WE DO NOT KNOW. We do not KNOW of anything supernatural. Because I am not gullible, my standard of belief requires reason and evidence; since none of those exist to support the assertion that gods are real, much less that we know the mind of just one of them, I hold a position of non-belief. This does not require faith of any sort because faith pertains to a claim that something “IS” and in the absence of such an “IS” claim there can be no faith. Asserting that “non-belief” is a “faith” is as asinine as asserting that non-belief in Santa is a faith; or non-belief in the Tooth Fairy is a faith. Belief without evidence REQUIRES faith and where evidence exists faith is not required. It’s not a hard concept to understand yet it will not surprise me if you continue to attempt to twist my position into one of faith.

I admit what I do not know and you accuse me of arrogance. You claim to KNOW that some god made the entire cosmos just for you, that he charged you with spreading his “good news” around the world. Your position is truly humble [sarcasm].

I will ask you again. You made a claim to possess knowledge that mankind was created, knowledge is demonstrable and objective, please substantiate that claim. That is all that I am asking you to do; it should be simple enough. Do this and you WIN!