Another new guy

goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Another new guy

I stumbled on this site by chance, and I'm interested in the discussions, so I thought I'd sign up. I'm a theist (my friend likes to call me a mystic), but I don't know much about theology, philosophy, or science. I've got a lot of catching up to do. Cheers.


Jeffrick
High Level DonorRational VIP!SuperfanGold Member
Jeffrick's picture
Posts: 2376
Joined: 2008-03-25
User is offlineOffline
              

 

 

 

                            Welcome aboard.   I'm in Canada where do you hail from and live?

 

"Very funny Scotty; now beam down our clothes."

VEGETARIAN: Ancient Hindu word for "lousy hunter"

If man was formed from dirt, why is there still dirt?


danatemporary
danatemporary's picture
Posts: 1515
Joined: 2011-01-12
User is offlineOffline
       


 

 


    


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Thanks, Jeffrick. I live in

Thanks, Jeffrick. I live in the northwest US.


danatemporary
danatemporary's picture
Posts: 1515
Joined: 2011-01-12
User is offlineOffline
I t s a y s W e l c o m e

 Kind slow about now.  Couldnt tell you why ..


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
danatemporary wrote: Kind

danatemporary wrote:

 Kind slow about now.  Couldnt tell you why ..

 

Thank you, and thanks to the little hints at the bottom of the graphic, I actually figured the message out Smiling


Atheistextremist
atheistSilver Member
Atheistextremist's picture
Posts: 5095
Joined: 2009-09-17
User is offlineOffline
Hi goathead

 

 

Here's your avatar...

 

 

 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
Welcome to the forum

 Welcome aboard. Feel free to join in on the discussions. ask questions or just participate in general. 

When you define yourself as a mystic, are you speaking in terms of like : Gnosticism ? 

 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
goathead

The goathead I was thinking of is the annoying weed that always punctures my bicycle tires. 

My friend is the one that labelled me a mystic. I'm not sure what exactly his definition is, but my belief in God is one way to qualify. I think the term mystic might be popular with the objectivists?


Brian37
atheistSuperfan
Brian37's picture
Posts: 13549
Joined: 2006-02-14
User is offlineOffline
Lots of smart people here.

Lots of smart people here. And yea if you say you don't know much, you do have a lot to catch up on. It took me 11 years to get to where I am today and I am still learning.

Just to arm you a bit. Suggested terms you SHOULD look up in case a theists uses them.

 

1. The problem with "infinite regress" something complex if it has a creator then that creator would have to be even more complex.

2. Circular reasoning, is anything that is self serving.

3. The Fallacy of "Pascal's wager", problem with betting on a belief

4. Ocham's Razor......"Out of many given guesses to solve a problem, the one with the least baggage is the most likely answer".

EXAMPLE:

1. A god exists

2. Or people make up gods.

 

Books you should read.

 

1. The New Atheism by Victor Stinger

2. The God Delusion, by Richard Dawkins

3. God is not Great, the late Christopher Hitchens

4. End of Faith, by Sam Harris

5. Infidel, Ayaan Hersi Ali

 

TONS more. But don't let that overwhelm you. Take your time read and don't be afraid to ask anyone here questions. Welcome.

 

 

 

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Thanks, Brian37. Maybe I'll

Thanks, Brian37. Maybe I'll start with the first item on your list (infinite regress), because I'm currently persuaded that cause and effect begins with an uncaused cause that was not created.


ex-minister
atheistHigh Level ModeratorSilver Member
ex-minister's picture
Posts: 1708
Joined: 2010-01-29
User is offlineOffline
Welcome aboard goathead. I

Welcome aboard goathead.
I thought of the Rolling Stones album, goats head soup, and Dancing with Mr. D, which us atheist love to do.

Religion Kills !!!

Numbers 31:17-18 - Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

http://jesus-needs-money.blogspot.com/


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote:Thanks,

goathead wrote:
Thanks, Brian37. Maybe I'll start with the first item on your list (infinite regress), because I'm currently persuaded that cause and effect begins with an uncaused cause that was not created.

Sounds like that you might lean more towards an Atheist viewpoint, goathead. Most believers argue that everything must have a first cause and that the universe was originated by a god. 

You sound like you might think a little differently.

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
ex-minister wrote:Welcome

ex-minister wrote:
Welcome aboard goathead. I thought of the Rolling Stones album, goats head soup, and Dancing with Mr. D, which us atheist love to do.

 

I thought of that album myself when I first saw the name. But the song that I associate with that album the most is "Angie". 

I may be only in my mid-thirties, but I gotta say, The Rolling Stones are the greatest band and far superior to anything my generation ever produced. 

I know that is off topic, but I never miss a chance to say I am a diehard Stones fan. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
harleysportster wrote:Sounds

harleysportster wrote:

Sounds like that you might lean more towards an Atheist viewpoint, goathead. Most believers argue that everything must have a first cause and that the universe was originated by a god.

You sound like you might think a little differently.

Hmm, I'm not sure, but I think I agree with the believers you describe.  I think there must be a first cause, but I also think that cause is necessarily uncaused (and therefore always existent).  Perhaps I didn't understand your point?
 


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead

goathead wrote:

harleysportster wrote:

Sounds like that you might lean more towards an Atheist viewpoint, goathead. Most believers argue that everything must have a first cause and that the universe was originated by a god.

You sound like you might think a little differently.

Hmm, I'm not sure, but I think I agree with the believers you describe.  I think there must be a first cause, but I also think that cause is necessarily uncaused (and therefore always existent).  Perhaps I didn't understand your point?
 

Well, most theists argue that since everything has to have a first cause, the universe itself has to have a first cause and that cause must be the by-product of a divine creator/deity.

Yet, you mentioned that the cause was uncaused and always existent. 

Which seems to lean towards the atheist viewpoint, since you did not state that a deity/god was the cause of the origins of the universe. 

Atheism simply means a lack of belief in god, nothing more or nothing less really. Go to the link in the left-hand bar and click on "Am I an agnostic or an atheist?" scroll down the page to the video, about halfway through and watch it. (It's very brief) Let me know which one that you identify with the most. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Nice FAQ.  I think the

Nice FAQ.  I think the uncaused cause is God, so it sounds like I'm in the theist bucket.  I also think that while it doesn't make sense that a creature could fully comprehend its creator, it's reasonable that a creator could reveal certain knowledge to the creature about himself.  So I'm not in the "it's theoretically impossible to know about a creator" category (at least not presently).


Ktulu
atheist
Posts: 1830
Joined: 2010-12-21
User is offlineOffline
Welcome aboard, any reason

Welcome aboard, any reason why the "uncaused" cause has to have a white beard and impregnate female virgin earthlings?  Why not the universe itself be the uncaused cause?  Why take that extra step and call the uncaused cause God, or Steve, or the Out-dimensional-chicken-creating-universes?

 

"Don't seek these laws to understand. Only the mad can comprehend..." -- George Cosbuc


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote:Nice FAQ.  I

goathead wrote:

Nice FAQ.  I think the uncaused cause is God, so it sounds like I'm in the theist bucket.  I also think that while it doesn't make sense that a creature could fully comprehend its creator, it's reasonable that a creator could reveal certain knowledge to the creature about himself.  So I'm not in the "it's theoretically impossible to know about a creator" category (at least not presently).

What part of this "creator" do you believe reveals itself to us ? I have heard the argument that it would be technically impossible for a finite mind to grasp infinity. However, I think if that statement were true, then if something like that actually existed, and it were beyond our understanding, then we would have no way of determining the motives or workings of such a thing.

I take the position, that in the absence of all evidence, the default position would be non-belief. 

For instance, if I were to tell you that a celestial creature had descended from the sky, was living in my backyard, and could not be seen, felt, touched or known, would you not want to see some evidence of it ? 

There are allot of people on here, that are deists and panentheists, would you consider yourself possibly in that category ? 

Tell me more about the god that you believe in. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Ktulu wrote:Welcome aboard,

Ktulu wrote:

Welcome aboard, any reason why the "uncaused" cause has to have a white beard and impregnate female virgin earthlings? Why not the universe itself be the uncaused cause? Why take that extra step and call the uncaused cause God, or Steve, or the Out-dimensional-chicken-creating-universes?

Hi Ktulu, thanks for the welcome. I think the first cause is God for various reasons, but I can't prove that it's necessary. That's why I'm here--to learn and develop ideas on those kind of things.

harleysportster wrote:

What part of this "creator" do you believe reveals itself to us ? I have heard the argument that it would be technically impossible for a finite mind to grasp infinity. However, I think if that statement were true, then if something like that actually existed, and it were beyond our understanding, then we would have no way of determining the motives or workings of such a thing.

I take the position, that in the absence of all evidence, the default position would be non-belief. 

For instance, if I were to tell you that a celestial creature had descended from the sky, was living in my backyard, and could not be seen, felt, touched or known, would you not want to see some evidence of it ? 

There are allot of people on here, that are deists and panentheists, would you consider yourself possibly in that category ? 

Tell me more about the god that you believe in. 

Yep, I pretty much agree with all of that.  I don't have any original or innovative arguments for God; I'm just trying to do the best with what little knowledge I have.  I think the "first cause" is God for the usual reasons (e.g. order in the universe).

BTW, I don't know exactly what a deist or panentheist is, so I'll have to check up on that before I can answer.


tonyjeffers
tonyjeffers's picture
Posts: 482
Joined: 2012-02-14
User is offlineOffline
Beware of religion. It is a

Beware of religion. It is a poison that is not easily to flush out of your system. And remember "I don't know, must be god" is not a position you have to take.  Those who try to lead you to that belief are  toting a book of fairy tales and/or are trying to sell you their philosophy of assumptions laced with double talk and words and numbers games.

I speak from experience. I am a recovered christian and to my shame and humiliation am guilty of the crimes listed above.

BTW Welcome

"...but truth is a point of view, and so it is changeable. And to rule by fettering the mind through fear of punishment in another world is just as base as to use force." -Hypatia


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote: Yep, I

goathead wrote:

 

Yep, I pretty much agree with all of that.  I don't have any original or innovative arguments for God; I'm just trying to do the best with what little knowledge I have.  I think the "first cause" is God for the usual reasons (e.g. order in the universe).

BTW, I don't know exactly what a deist or panentheist is, so I'll have to check up on that before I can answer.

Quick definitions from wikipedia :

Deism (Listeni/ˈd.ɪzəm/[1][2] or /ˈd.ɪzəm/) is a religious philosophy which holds that reason and observation of the natural world, without the need for organized religion, can determine that the universe is the product of an intelligent creator. According to deists, the creator never intervenes in human affairs or suspends the natural laws of the universe. Deists typically reject supernatural events such as prophecy and miracles, tending instead to assert that a god (or "the Supreme Architect&quotEye-wink does not alter the universe by intervening in it. This idea is also known as the clockwork universe theory, in which a god designs and builds the universe, but steps aside to let it run on its own. Two main forms of deism currently exist: classical deism and modern deism.

Panentheism (from Greek πᾶν (pân) "all"; ἐν (en) "in"; and θεός (theós) "God"; "all-in-God&quotEye-wink is a belief system which posits that the divine exists (be it a monotheistic God, polytheistic gods, or an eternal cosmic animating force), interpenetrates every part of nature and timelessly extends beyond it. Panentheism differentiates itself from pantheism, which leaves open the possibility that the divine is not a distinct being or beings but is synonymous with the universe.[1]

In panentheism, the universe in the first formulation is practically the whole itself. In the second formulation, the universe and the divine are not ontologically equivalent. In panentheism, God is viewed as the eternal animating force behind the universe. Some versions suggest that the universe is nothing more than the manifest part of God. In some forms of panentheism, the cosmos exists within God, who in turn "pervades" or is "in" the cosmos. While pantheism asserts that 'All is God', panentheism goes further to claim that God is greater than the universe. In addition, some forms indicate that the universe is contained within God.[2] Much Hindu thought is highly characterized by panentheism and pantheism.[3]

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
I don't know

I don't know why those smiley faces appeared in my copy and paste definitions. Just ignore those. Hehe.

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


pauljohntheskeptic
atheistSilver Member
pauljohntheskeptic's picture
Posts: 2484
Joined: 2008-02-26
User is offlineOffline
Welcome

goathead wrote:

I stumbled on this site by chance, and I'm interested in the discussions, so I thought I'd sign up. I'm a theist (my friend likes to call me a mystic), but I don't know much about theology, philosophy, or science. I've got a lot of catching up to do. Cheers.

Welcome to the forums. I see you have already met Brian and he gave you some good places to research. I once was a believer, my name really is Paul John, very religious parents.

Perhaps with some study and research you too will see why the idea of a god did it is not very likely.

Have fun.

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
I'll have to ponder those

I'll have to ponder those definitions for a bit.  For one thing, I'm not sure exactly what they mean by "universe."  Typically I think of universe as the set of all existence, but the panentheism definition in particular seems to have a different definition.
 


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote:I'll have to

goathead wrote:

I'll have to ponder those definitions for a bit.  For one thing, I'm not sure exactly what they mean by "universe."  Typically I think of universe as the set of all existence, but the panentheism definition in particular seems to have a different definition.
 

Let me look up some links and see if I can post them for you. A more reliable source than wiki might be needed.  Smiling 

I am not trying to sway your opinion either way, just seeing what you might identify with and hearing your opinion on it. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
Links (kinda lengthy, you can just skim)

Here's a couple of links ( kinda lengthy, you can just skim them) :

Deist :

http://www.deism.com/deism_defined.htm

Panentheism and Pantheism ( There is a slight difference) :

http://atheism.about.com/library/FAQs/religion/blrel_theism_panen.htm

 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote:Nice FAQ.  I

goathead wrote:

Nice FAQ.  I think the uncaused cause is God, so it sounds like I'm in the theist bucket.  I also think that while it doesn't make sense that a creature could fully comprehend its creator, it's reasonable that a creator could reveal certain knowledge to the creature about himself.  So I'm not in the "it's theoretically impossible to know about a creator" category (at least not presently).

 

My personal journey to Atheism was not an overnight thing. (Not trying to persuade you one way or the other, different people, different journeys and different conclusions).

I was raised in a very strict Catholic home. I was very devoutly religious for most of my childhood and late teens. Certain experiences ( it would take hours to relate all of them here) lead me to question and doubt all of it. 

I left home and went through a pretty rough period of my life, and I could not shake the persistent feelings of guilt and shame that religion had instilled into me. 

I drifted for a bit, flirted with Buddhism, kinda got involved in the whole New-Ager type thing, even went through a short period of ghost hunting and stuff. 

At the bottom of all that searching, I just never found anything to really fill the void. 

Well, long story short, I have always loved to read and I heard one of my favorite fiction writers, Harlan Ellison, state that he was an Atheist. 

I had never really pondered Atheism that much. I always assumed the stereotype, that life without SOME kind of spirituality would be empty and meaningless. 

But hearing Harlan talk about it, got me to thinking. 

I soon discovered Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens ( my favorite) and something clicked. 

It all began to make sense. I soon started delving into scientific books and such and was actually overjoyed. This was what I had been looking for my whole life. 

Of course, I do not have all the answers or all of the mysteries solved, but I know what I am today. 

Now, to look at me, I am a skinny, long haired, bearded biker, with tattoos all over my arms and chest and earrings.  Allot of people take a look at me and automatically dismiss me as some thug with nothing on his mind but beer bikes and babes ( which takes a huge part of it up I might add) but looks can be deceiving. But, I do ponder things, I do like learning new things. 

There are a couple of books ( I don't necessarily agree with their final conclusions) called, The God Part of the Brain by Mathew Alper, Why God Won't Go Away by Neuberg and Religion Explained by Pascal Boyar that touch upon the way that human beings seemed somewhat inclined towards some sort of, shall we say, "spirituality". However, that has alot to do with neurological processes in the brain, cultural memes and biological evolution. I could get allot more in depth here, but it would take too many pages. 

Just thought I'd share that with you. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Thanks for the welcome,

Thanks for the welcome, pauljohntheskeptic.

And thanks for the information, harleysportster; I'm still digging through it.  I'm not really coming from a position of personal doubt or crisis at the moment, but I've obviously got some squishiness in my worldview.  BTW, I've never owned a HD, but I'm a hopeless moto fan myself.


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote: I'm still

goathead wrote:

 I'm still digging through it.  I'm not really coming from a position of personal doubt or crisis at the moment, but I've obviously got some squishiness in my worldview.  BTW, I've never owned a HD, but I'm a hopeless moto fan myself.

Understandable. Famous Atheists like Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens never reported having any "bad" experiences with religion or with the religious community. 

You have people on here that have always been atheists, others that are undecided, christians and deists and everything in between. 

I was just trying to get a better idea of where you might be coming from and where the term "mystic" as your friend describes you, would apply. 

Of course, not every type of believer or theist has to fall into a set category. 

There used to be a regular poster on here named Eloise ( haven't heard from her in awhile) who described herself as a Panentheist. But her intelligence level was so high and her arguments were often so complex and beyond my grasp that I never quite grasped exactly WHAT she believed in. But I always enjoyed her posts. 

There are other long time theists on here like Teralek and Luminon that I have had enjoyable discussions with. 

It's generally the fanatical, zealous and self - righteous assholes that I show no respect to at all. But they don't usually last very long. ( Well, there are a couple of persistent pests, but I look at them as comic relief). 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


Vastet
atheistBloggerHigh Level ModeratorSuperfan
Vastet's picture
Posts: 10554
Joined: 2006-12-25
User is offlineOffline
Welcome!

Welcome! Smiling

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


Brian37
atheistSuperfan
Brian37's picture
Posts: 13549
Joined: 2006-02-14
User is offlineOffline
goathead wrote:Thanks,

goathead wrote:
Thanks, Brian37. Maybe I'll start with the first item on your list (infinite regress), because I'm currently persuaded that cause and effect begins with an uncaused cause that was not created.

Be careful there, the truth is that scientists currently are not saying either way with absolute certainty if there was something before this universe, or the universe came out of nothing.

WHAT causes infinite regress in not finite vs infinite.

What matters in either case is that a god is not required for either something before, or nothing before.

In other words, an all powerful God would be complex which would need something even more complex and that complexity would need something even more complex and so on and so on.

If one looks at the universe as an ongoing thing like a weather pattern, you know that weather patters are made up of simplistic parts, that manifest without cognition into a bigger pattern.

 

 

 

 

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Philosophically speaking,

Philosophically speaking, and independent of my belief in God, I don't believe that something can come from nothing.  It may be the case that my definition of nothing is different than a scientists' definition though.  For example, I don't think a unicorn is nothing.  It's not real, but it's not nothing either.


tonyjeffers
tonyjeffers's picture
Posts: 482
Joined: 2012-02-14
User is offlineOffline
goathead

goathead wrote:

Philosophically speaking, and independent of my belief in God, I don't believe that something can come from nothing.  It may be the case that my definition of nothing is different than a scientists' definition though.  For example, I don't think a unicorn is nothing.  It's not real, but it's not nothing either.

Incorrect.  A unicorn IS nothing.  It doesn't exist.

A drawing of a unicorn is something.  Even the ides of a unicorn is something. 

The idea of god is something. A drawing of a jesus character is something.

But god is nothing.  it doesn't exist.  But a unicorn is a good comparison.

"...but truth is a point of view, and so it is changeable. And to rule by fettering the mind through fear of punishment in another world is just as base as to use force." -Hypatia


tonyjeffers
tonyjeffers's picture
Posts: 482
Joined: 2012-02-14
User is offlineOffline
Btw goathead. if you want a

Btw goathead. if you want a easy look at the idea of something coming from nothing and creation in general, The discovery channel is showing Stephen Hawking's Grand Design series, episode "Did god create the universe?"

"...but truth is a point of view, and so it is changeable. And to rule by fettering the mind through fear of punishment in another world is just as base as to use force." -Hypatia


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead

goathead wrote:

Philosophically speaking, and independent of my belief in God, I don't believe that something can come from nothing.  It may be the case that my definition of nothing is different than a scientists' definition though.  For example, I don't think a unicorn is nothing.  It's not real, but it's not nothing either.

Good analogy about the unicorn.

However, simply because science does not have the conclusive answers about the origins of the universe, I don't think that would necessarily mean that a god would be behind it. 

For if something can not come from nothing, where would god have come from ? 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
For example

 I don't have the book in front of me, so I am paraphrasing here. But Mathew Alper's God Part of the Brain has a quote where the author mentions : What is God ? What can people all agree upon that would be considered God ? After careful thought, it struck me (Alper) as profound. God was a word. That was something that could be agreed upon. God is a word and where do words originate from ? They originate from the human mind. 

Such as the thing with ideas, beliefs and such. They may be a product of what we have been taught or what we have learned through our own journeys, but how they can be beyond our own thoughts is something that I think would be next to impossible. 

That is not to say that something necessarily came from "nothing". But, by the same token, where does the "something" originate ? 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Hi TonyJeffers: we cancelled

Hi TonyJeffers: we cancelled our cable last summer.  Maybe that show will be on Netflicks streaming sometime.

harleysportster wrote:

For if something can not come from nothing, where would god have come from ? 

It's my belief that there has never been nothing.  So my answer is that God didn't come from anywhere, he always has been.  Some of my objectivisit friends also believe that there was never nothing, but they don't believe in God either.  They don't speculate on what the always-has-been is, except to say that it isn't intelligent.


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote: It's my

goathead wrote:

 

It's my belief that there has never been nothing.  So my answer is that God didn't come from anywhere, he always has been.  Some of my objectivisit friends also believe that there was never nothing, but they don't believe in God either.  They don't speculate on what the always-has-been is, except to say that it isn't intelligent.

I would lean towards the views of your objectivsts friends. 

If god has always been here, would it not be too far fetched to say that the universe has simply always been here ? 

Of course, the semantics of what would constitute "nothing" could get rather far out. 

What would constitute nothing ? 

I don't think I could define that one. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
 Agreed, nothing is a

 

Agreed, nothing is a strange thing to talk about. That's why I say a unicorn is not nothing (I humbly disagree with tonyjeffers), because I don't think it makes sense to say that something is nothing, regardless if the something is real or not.

I also agree with your point that even if you grant that there was always something for argument's sake, that in itself doesn't demonstrate an intelligence (whatever "intelligence" means--squishy ideas here!).

 


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
goathead wrote: Agreed,

goathead wrote:

 

Agreed, nothing is a strange thing to talk about. That's why I say a unicorn is not nothing (I humbly disagree with tonyjeffers), because I don't think it makes sense to say that something is nothing, regardless if the something is real or not.

I also agree with your point that even if you grant that there was always something for argument's sake, that in itself doesn't demonstrate an intelligence (whatever "intelligence" means--squishy ideas here!).

 

Well, technically a unicorn does not exist, other than as a concept of the imagination. As far as nothing, something and intelligence, I guess that would fall into the defintion of the person's perception, which would make such terms rather subjective. 

When someone calls me on the phone and asks what's up. I generally say : nothing. 

Hehe, this has become quite an interesting conversation. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
Nothing, Something, Intelligence

 Hehe, this got so interesting that I had to look up the dictionary : 

Nothing : no thing, not anything, naught. no part or trace of anything. nonexistence. 

Something : A certain determined or unspecified thing 

Intelligence : capacity for learning, reasoning, grasping concepts and ideas, aptitude with facts and reason, the faculty of understanding. 

 

Well, I guess the dictionary did not tell me anything ( what is anything ? lol )  that I did not already know. 

So I guess we are still in abstract and subjective territory. 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


Brian37
atheistSuperfan
Brian37's picture
Posts: 13549
Joined: 2006-02-14
User is offlineOffline
goathead

goathead wrote:

Philosophically speaking, and independent of my belief in God, I don't believe that something can come from nothing.  It may be the case that my definition of nothing is different than a scientists' definition though.  For example, I don't think a unicorn is nothing.  It's not real, but it's not nothing either.

I am in between, but either way to me, postulating a god is absurd in any case. I've seen too much of the cycles of life and sudden rain storms to think that magic is involved EITHER WAY.

I mostly lean toward something prior, yet unknown, but with QM I cant say that it did not start from nothing.

My best guess is that what we call the universe is the new cycle as a result of the dead material of  a prior cycle, like the seasons changing. But if this universe started from nothing, I still fail to see how a god would need to fit in.

QM postulates tons of freaky shit, even gravity affecting time. But I will not let the projections of humans projecting their own desires in the form of childish myth, fill in that gap, either way.

"I don't know" the theist constantly jumps at and clings too and shouts AH AH, but whatever we as a species do not know will not make pink unicorns real or will it ever mean that Angelina Jolie will give me a blow job, in a prior universe, now, or in a future universe.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


goathead
Theist
Posts: 14
Joined: 2012-06-05
User is offlineOffline
Brian37 wrote:But if this

Brian37 wrote:

But if this universe started from nothing, I still fail to see how a god would need to fit in.

A god can't fit in if there was nothing.  A god can only fit in if there was not nothing (I assume that when we say god, we are talking about a being that always was).

 


Jean Chauvin
Theistard
Jean Chauvin's picture
Posts: 1211
Joined: 2010-11-19
User is offlineOffline
Hello

Hey Goathead,

I live in the northwest also. I know exactly what you mean by goatheads. I may be near you.

First off, a definition must have it's meaning in the context. While stem words are fine for general understanding, the context is what gives it their meaning Bryan.

The issue of cause if absurd. Since we were not there to witness the cause, then we do not know who the cause was. And even if the cause was without a cause for infinty, the causer is never defined.

The Causer could be Allah, my Uncle Frank, or Satan.

If you have no understanding of the the creator of the cause, then you are simply arguing in ambiguity. While this weakens wannabe atheists, it adds no meaning to anything and is a weak generic argument.

As a Christian Theist (not a theist), one must argue more preciesely like a sniper. Use valid arguments and have the soundness of those premises tested by an impeccable normative.

 

Only in this way can we understand who the cause is by not argument to the Cause but arguing from the cause

 

The argument was formed by Aquinas and has been refuted. It fails miserably. You end up arguing backwards to an unknown probable/maybe cause. We also need to define cause. Since Cause is greater then effect, then the Cause of the effect is naturally greater then the cause which points back to goathead when he said that the creature cannot comprehend the creator. One needs to qualify this.

Stay away from Tomistic arguments goathead, they are like a those holloween candies you got as a kid but actually have razors in the candy to utterly bring you to your death.

 

The lack of belief is not all of atheism. It is a modern invention. And since Christianity has faith belief and knowledge interchangeable with eachother, we would agree that wannabe atheists have a lack of knowledge, I agree with them. But actually this definiton is that of agnosticism.

Since agnosticism doesn't have the "PUNCH" of atheism, they choose atheism kind of like Tiger woods wears Nike Gear even though Nike is not the best shoe.

But they also misled you. This is one definition. There are many "atheist" denominations. You have weak vs. strong Laveyian atheism vs. Northern Buddhist atheism. You also have communism which is a form of atheism. This is a denomination which is actually weak in the literal sense since it is by definiton NOT atheist. lol.

I was called this avatar becuase I beat up Brian Sapient so hard, he cried for weeks. This is an ad hominem towards their weakness of argument.

Yes, Brian27. God created the earthquake in Japan. lol.

Respectfully,

Jean Chauvin (Jude 3).

 

A Rational Christian of Intelligence (rare)with a valid and sound justification for my epistemology and a logical refutation for those with logical fallacies and false worldviews upon their normative of thinking in retrospect to objective normative(s). This is only understood via the imago dei in which we all are.

Respectfully,

Jean Chauvin (Jude 3).


Vastet
atheistBloggerHigh Level ModeratorSuperfan
Vastet's picture
Posts: 10554
Joined: 2006-12-25
User is offlineOffline
Lol. You couldn't argue your

Lol. You couldn't argue your way out of a paper bag.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3273
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is onlineOnline
I figured Jean

 I figured Jean would have to materialize sooner or later on a thread like this one. 

Still cracks me up. 

Took me awhile to figure out that OPIE was OP. 

Kinda like how his responses used to have : ANSWERS at the top of each post. 

Anyone remember that one ? Just like that post that stated " IT TAKES TIME TO ANSWER, HAVE SOME PATIENCE" 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno