Anyone having suicidal thoughts?

crocaduck
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Anyone having suicidal thoughts?

No preconceptions, assumptions, or one liners, PLEASE.

"If all of life is meaningless, and ultimately absurd , why bother to march straight forward, why stand in the queue as though life as a whole makes sense?" —Francis Schaeffer, The God Who Is There

If everyone completely passes out of existence when they die, what ultimate meaning has life? Even if a man's life is important because of his influence on others or by his effect on the course of history, of what ultimate significance is that if there is no immortality and all other lives, events, and even history itself is ultimately meaningless?

Suppose the universe had never existed. Apart form God, what ultimate difference would that make?

In a universe without God or immortality, how is mankind ultimately different from a swarm of mosquitoes or a barnyard of pigs?

What viable basis exists for justice or law if man is nothing but a sophisticated, programmed machine?

Why does research, discovery, diplomacy, art, music, sacrifice, compassion, feelings of love, or affectionate and caring relationships mean anything if it all ultimately comes to naught anyway?

Without absolute morals, what ultimate difference is there between Saddam Hussein and Mother Theresa?

If there is no immortality, why shouldn't all things be permitted?(Dostoyevsky)

If morality is only a relative social construct, on what basis could or should anyone ever move to interfere with cultures that practice apartheid, female circumcision, cannibalism, or ethnic cleansing?

If there is no God, on what basis is there any meaning or hope for fairness, comfort, or better times?

Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness?

What is the point in arguing on this forum if there is no true meaning to life itself?


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You're right...  I'm off

You're right...  I'm off to kill myself.

 

(sorry... one-liner) 


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To have a good ass time. I

To have a good ass time. I mean id rather exist than not exist... thats basically the reason i dont pop myself off. Its to have the best time i can doing things that i enjoy. Or making the best of things that i do because i might as well do it to my liking if there is no point anyhow. If there is eternal life after death why wait?


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Not

Not recently.

 

Anyways,

Question: Why buy a car when it's only going to break down in years to come?

Answer: Because it gets you around.

 

Life doesn't have to have meaning to be enjoyable. What's the point of enjoying life? I don't know, but it makes me happy. 


Nero
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Please see my discussion of

Please see my discussion of Existentialism.


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If I knew that Christ was

If I knew that Christ was going to send me to eternal paradise after I died, I'd kill myself when the going got tough!


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crocaduck wrote: Without

crocaduck wrote:
Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness? What is the point in arguing on this forum if there is no true meaning to life itself?

I am coincidental, but loved none the less.

I have purpose for my family and those important to me, not a magic sky daddy.

My life is neither futile, pointless, or meaningless, rather every precious day here is infinitely more meaningfull, poignant than one spent look for something else after this.

I posit that it is your life that is meaningless and pointless as it is you who is longing for a perfection after this. Why not skip this life, end it now and get on with your party the likes of Falwell, Martin Luther and the murderous popes of ages past?


crocaduck
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"I posit that it is your

"I posit that it is your life that is meaningless and pointless as it is you who is longing for a perfection after this. Why not skip this life, end it now and get on with your party the likes of Falwell, Martin Luther and the murderous popes of ages past? "

I appreciate this response and question.

I explain this life here: http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/sapient/atheist_vs_theist/7331


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BGH wrote: crocaduck

BGH wrote:

crocaduck wrote:
Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness? What is the point in arguing on this forum if there is no true meaning to life itself?

I am coincidental, but loved none the less.

I have purpose for my family and those important to me, not a magic sky daddy.

My life is neither futile, pointless, or meaningless, rather every precious day here is infinitely more meaningfull, poignant than one spent look for something else after this.

I posit that it is your life that is meaningless and pointless as it is you who is longing for a perfection after this. Why not skip this life, end it now and get on with your party the likes of Falwell, Martin Luther and the murderous popes of ages past?

Now hold on a minute. All popes weren't murderous. The really effective ones were but not all of them. I can think of Linus II and Sylvester IV off the top of my head. I am sure there is another one in there somewhere.

"Tis better to rule in Hell than to serve in Heaven." -Lucifer


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You are aware that this is

You are aware that this is an appeal to emotion, correct?

 

The only difference, to me, between an atheist and a theist is that I don't believe in something just because I want to. I can't believe in god just because I want it to be true. I can't ignore science because the idea of a personal creator is a nicer one. I can't ignore the fact that there is no scientific evidence that points to the existence of a god.

If I ignore facts in favour of feeling, I am doing myself a disservice.

If I spend this life looking in vain towards an eternity with something I can't prove exists, then I am wasting the little time I have here.

I don't feel that my life is empty and useless without a deity in it. I am still a human, and a unique one amongst billions. I still have a voice to express myself, a family to love, and a whole species to be accountable to.

I don't believe that my life has no meaning simply because I am not created by a divine being. I mean lots of things to lots of people, and so do you. I think that my personal actions; how I treat others, what I spend my life doing, what I try to accomplish - this shapes my life, gives me a purpose. As a social service worker, my main purpose in life is to love and care for those who have been rejected, forgotten and neglected by the rest of society. To these people, surely I serve a purpose, and I am more 'real' to them than any god.

I don't believe that humanity is lost, morally, without a god. I believe in the good in people. I put my faith into us, I know that although we are not perfect, we are a highly evolved species. We feel love and compassion for those around us, and were there not so many useless things to divide us(like religion), that we could truly do what is best for all of us. I base my hope for better times for humanity ON humanity, for surely it is the strength and ingenuity of our species that has allowed us to come this far already?

I don't want to believe in a god because I am afraid of death. And really, this is what deity worship comes down to. Every religion on this planet has one thing in common - eternal life. Death is a scary concept, and none of us want to die. But not wanting something to happen can't change the truth of it. We need to die; it is only through the death of our ancestors that we are alive now. Our planet is finite, and can't hold everyone who has ever lived. The atoms that are holding your body together dissipate when you die and go off to form other things in the universe - what could be more magical and awe inspiring than that? As Carl Sagan told us, we are all made of star stuff.

I believe that life is so much more precious because I don't believe in a heaven, because I know that this is my one shot and that I need to do everything in my power to make my short time here productive for myself and my fellow man. Why can you not see that we live on through humanity? Everything you do here has an imact on those around you. It is this impact that will be remembered and felt when you're long dead. What do you choose to do with this life?

You can close your eyes and wait for the next life to come along and be better than this one, or you can accept your limitations and realize that you are finite. Once you do that, you can begin to really live - for yourself, and for the rest of humanity.

 

 


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I think we create our own

I think we create our own meaning to life, we don't have it thrust on us. There is no objective meaning to life except to pass on our genes but there is plenty of subjective meaning. I want to be an academic, that is the lifestyle I want. I want to have fun. I want to enjoy every second of life because I only have one. I know that I could die at any minute as soon as I walk out the door, there's always a slight chance, falling meteors, bad drivers rushing through red lights, gangsters (ok not so much in Lancaster but when I'm in Manchester it can be a real fear sometimes). But I accept it that it probably won't happen, I expect to live a long and fruitful life, write many books, papers, articles, teach students the ins and outs of ethics and political philosophy. I have plenty of meaning in my life. What's the meaning of life? We all have our own.


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crocaduck wrote: I explain

You understand though, this post referenced in the link is merely your 'opinion' of this life and god. I do not hold god to be true, a creator god to be true, heaven to be true, hell to be true, salvation to be true, damnation to be true or any other parts of the 'god' concept. 

The post does not speak to me, nor explain anything.


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This question absolutely

This question absolutely kills me (excuse the pun). Why does god have to be the ONLY meaningful thing in my life?  Why can't I be meaningful in my life? 

My life is not meaningless.  Its full of wonderful people, memories and events.  Yes, I've had my share of sorrow but it's been worth it to have the experiences I have had.  My family, friends, lover and pets make this life meaningful. 

So what if we die and there is no afterlife.  We still had this life and that's what is most important.  If you're just sitting around waiting for the afterlife, go ahead, that's your perogative.  But what a waste.  My life is more meaningful to me because its the only one I've got. 

If god takes life he's an indian giver


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It was actually an appeal

It was actually an appeal to math.

If you think that:

I DO NOT THINK THIS. I belive what we do in the world has signifigance beyond measure. If a person belives the teaching of christ he won't stare into the sky waiting but he will go and do what Christ taught; to help people.

Most Christians simply stare and wait becuase it is easier than getting your hands dirty. It makes as much sense as believing that what i do now has no signifigance or wont have siginifigance 500 years from now so what is the point?

 

 


crocaduck
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These are great responses,

These are great responses, thanks!


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I don't want to die. I am

I don't want to die. I am more afraid of death than anything, because my mind will cease to function.

The difference is that I don't lie to myself that after I die, some sort of retribution or continuation will happen. I will die, my sentience will cease and the thoughts in my head will generate no longer.

The death part? Not afraid of it, live after death will be just like life before birth, I won't realize I'm dead. I won't exist.

Not being able to think, though? I dread the day that my brain stops functioning.

YOU shut the fuck up! WE'LL save America!


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Sleepy Norris wrote: To

Sleepy Norris wrote:
To have a good ass time. I mean id rather exist than not exist... thats basically the reason i dont pop myself off. Its to have the best time i can doing things that i enjoy. Or making the best of things that i do because i might as well do it to my liking if there is no point anyhow. If there is eternal life after death why wait?

If you exist to only do things you enjoy; why not rob gas stations to fuel a life of "fun" vs. hold down a job you don't like 100% of the time?


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LosingStreak06 wrote:Not

LosingStreak06 wrote:

Not recently.

Anyways,

Question: Why buy a car when it's only going to break down in years to come?

Answer: Because it gets you around.

Life doesn't have to have meaning to be enjoyable. What's the point of enjoying life? I don't know, but it makes me happy. 

Who made the car or how did the car come into existance? Your analogy has too many holes. If life is meant solely for enjoyment why not... See previous post.


crocaduck
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Was the original post even

Was the original post even read?


LosingStreak06
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crocaduck

crocaduck wrote:
LosingStreak06 wrote:

Not recently.

Anyways,

Question: Why buy a car when it's only going to break down in years to come?

Answer: Because it gets you around.

Life doesn't have to have meaning to be enjoyable. What's the point of enjoying life? I don't know, but it makes me happy.

Who made the car or how did the car come into existance? Your analogy has too many holes. If life is meant solely for enjoyment why not... See previous post.

 

Where the car comes from isn't relevant to the matter at hand. There is a car, and you are telling me not to buy it, simply because it won't last forever. The way society has been set up, robbery doesn't lead to happiness. It leads to jail. And incarceration isn't on my list of "fun activities."


crocaduck
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The most consistent theme

The most consistent theme here is that life has meaning to each person because of enjoyment, or some contribution made to society, or family.If these are the meanings why not rob convenience stores to fuel the party life or find and kill evil dictators, or love your family.I believe you all have moral boundaries. You have not just laws of society, but a sense of conscience attributed by a Sky-God (thanks BGH).

 

{FIXED} 


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crocaduck

crocaduck wrote:
LosingStreak06 wrote:

Not recently.

Anyways,

Question: Why buy a car when it's only going to break down in years to come?

Answer: Because it gets you around.

Life doesn't have to have meaning to be enjoyable. What's the point of enjoying life? I don't know, but it makes me happy. 

Who made the car or how did the car come into existance? Your analogy has too many holes. If life is meant solely for enjoyment why not... See previous post.

You just asked a completely different question!


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crocaduck wrote: Sleepy

crocaduck wrote:

Sleepy Norris wrote:
To have a good ass time. I mean id rather exist than not exist... thats basically the reason i dont pop myself off. Its to have the best time i can doing things that i enjoy. Or making the best of things that i do because i might as well do it to my liking if there is no point anyhow. If there is eternal life after death why wait?

If you exist to only do things you enjoy; why not rob gas stations to fuel a life of "fun" vs. hold down a job you don't like 100% of the time?


Because we have morals and societal rules, that's why. This has already been covered before, many times. You should look through the threads.
And yes, atheists do have morals. No, you do not need god to have morals. If you want to broach this topic, I strongly suggest you look through the other threads, as its been discussed ad nauseum.

If god takes life he's an indian giver


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LosingStreak06

LosingStreak06 wrote:
crocaduck wrote:
LosingStreak06 wrote:

Not recently.

Anyways,

Question: Why buy a car when it's only going to break down in years to come?

Answer: Because it gets you around.

Life doesn't have to have meaning to be enjoyable. What's the point of enjoying life? I don't know, but it makes me happy.

Who made the car or how did the car come into existance? Your analogy has too many holes. If life is meant solely for enjoyment why not... See previous post.

 

Where the car comes from isn't relevant to the matter at hand. There is a car, and you are telling me not to buy it, simply because it won't last forever. The way society has been set up, robbery doesn't lead to happiness. It leads to jail. And incarceration isn't on my list of "fun activities."

Again the use of a car to describe existance is futile when describing the meaning of life. You might get caught stealing, true. But if enjoyment is the meaning to life then why are you in college? Becuase you want to better yourself. Again the question, why?


crocaduck
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pariahjane

pariahjane wrote:
crocaduck wrote:

Sleepy Norris wrote:
To have a good ass time. I mean id rather exist than not exist... thats basically the reason i dont pop myself off. Its to have the best time i can doing things that i enjoy. Or making the best of things that i do because i might as well do it to my liking if there is no point anyhow. If there is eternal life after death why wait?

If you exist to only do things you enjoy; why not rob gas stations to fuel a life of "fun" vs. hold down a job you don't like 100% of the time?

Because we have morals and societal rules, that's why. This has already been covered before, many times. You should look through the threads. And yes, atheists do have morals. No, you do not need god to have morals. If you want to broach this topic, I strongly suggest you look through the other threads, as its been discussed ad nauseum.

I suppose a forum is a poor way to organize these issues.


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I have never robbed a gas

I have never robbed a gas station i didnt know it was the fun thing to do... is it? Plus even if it is fun do you think the risk is worth the reward... get a felony for like enough money to last me maybe 2 weeks then i would have to knock off another. I like to see your morality though, God is the reason you dont knock off a gas station, or lie steal cheat or rape. Not that maybe i want to devolop trusting relationships with other people or that the idea of doing those things dont seem much fun.

As for holding down a steady job "all paid jobs absorb and degarde the minde" of course i dont want to have a real job, it would be awesome to marry a wife that loves me and makes enough income to support me while i presue what i want to do. However, those are uncommon (i also dont mean using a woman for her money, the woman in this sense would truly love me and i love her, she would love her job and i would love my lack of job)


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crocaduck wrote: But if

crocaduck wrote:

But if enjoyment is the meaning to life then why are you in college? Becuase you want to better yourself.

 

If you are going to ask me a question, I would appreciate being givene the opportunity to answer it myself, as I believe I can answer it better than you can (though perhaps you disagree).

I am in college because I enjoy it. I learn, I drink, I get laid every now and then. It's quite nice, although it's a tad expensive. Besides that, it is a means to an end: a career that I will find rewarding, both financially and personally.


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The better question is why

The better question is why you still are not in college at like 35 college is a good time. As a 45 year old "holding down a steady job where he would rather be". Living the college life or "married with children" Eye-wink


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The way I see it is, if

The way I see it is, if there is a God, in particular the Christian God, life doesn't have "meaning"; it has a meaning...a singular, immutable meaning, governed by moral laws, codes of conduct, and expected behavior.

The living of one's life without that imposition is what gives life true meaning, for in that removal lies true freedom that is only subject to ethics we can find through finding concepts that are objective to all human life.  Do we know that objective ethics totally?  No, but we can come to a good number of agreements, and it's a constant work in progress.

So, in short, the meaning to life without a creator would be to make sense of life as we live it...or not, and that's what we've been doing ever since we began to think. 

David Cross: So I was watching this one show where - there's a guy on stage and he pretends he has contact with the dead and people are watching.
Audience Member: Crossing Over.
David Cross: No, not Crossing Over. It was uh, church.


Maragon
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crocaduck wrote:

crocaduck wrote:

The most consistent theme here is that life has meaning to each person because of enjoyment, or some contribution made to society, or family.If these are the meanings why not rob convenience stores to fuel the party life or find and kill evil dictators, or love your family.I believe you all have moral boundaries. You have not just laws of society, but a sense of conscience attributed by a Sky-God (thanks BGH).

 

{FIXED}

 

This is so incorrect.

How can you liken an enjoyment of life, contibutions to your family and fellow man to robbing gas stations and killing dictators?

 

Are you really reading what has been written?

 

I don't think that robbing people is fun, in fact I think it's wrong.

I would never kill anyone, not even an evil dictator, because all life is precious and I will never be the one to decide whom should live and die. The minute you start quantifying how much someone 'deserves to live', you have dehumanized them.

And no, I am not just bound by laws of society, I am bound by moralality, which is something that is partly inherant and partly taught to me as a child. What happens in your childhood has FAR more effect on what type of person you'll be than a belief in god does.

 

Here's my questions for you;

Why are you pre-supposing that our existance here needs an ultimate purpose? What, then, is the ultimate purpose of things like cancer?

Why do you feel that your life is useless without god in it?

If science proved tomorrow, with 100% certainty that there was no god, would you kill yourself?


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Maragon wrote: crocaduck

Maragon wrote:
crocaduck wrote:

The most consistent theme here is that life has meaning to each person because of enjoyment, or some contribution made to society, or family.If these are the meanings why not rob convenience stores to fuel the party life or find and kill evil dictators, or love your family.I believe you all have moral boundaries. You have not just laws of society, but a sense of conscience attributed by a Sky-God (thanks BGH).

 

{FIXED}

 

This is so incorrect.

How can you liken an enjoyment of life, contibutions to your family and fellow man to robbing gas stations and killing dictators?

 

Are you really reading what has been written?

 

I don't think that robbing people is fun, in fact I think it's wrong.

I would never kill anyone, not even an evil dictator, because all life is precious and I will never be the one to decide whom should live and die. The minute you start quantifying how much someone 'deserves to live', you have dehumanized them.

And no, I am not just bound by laws of society, I am bound by moralality, which is something that is partly inherant and partly taught to me as a child. What happens in your childhood has FAR more effect on what type of person you'll be than a belief in god does.

 

Here's my questions for you;

Why are you pre-supposing that our existance here needs an ultimate purpose? What, then, is the ultimate purpose of things like cancer?

Why do you feel that your life is useless without god in it?

If science proved tomorrow, with 100% certainty that there was no god, would you kill yourself?

I hate it when theists tell us we're all miserable people! I may have been miserable at certain times in my life. We all have break-ups, fall outs with friends, family issues. I was unhappy at school, I was bullied both by other students and by teachers. None of this has anything to do with atheism (except maybe being picked out by theistic teachers as the little left-wing atheist rebel).

Telling us we can't be happy because we don't have God and their belief in God makes them happy is like me telling someone who doesn't like chocolate that he's miserable because I can't possibly enjoy life without chocolate! God makes you happy, chocolate makes me happy as do many things that actually exist! I love chocolate so much! I like it so dark it sucks in light and matter!


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Beautiful response. Thank

Beautiful response. Thank you so much. First off I totally agree with you on the following.

"I don't think that robbing people is fun, in fact I think it's wrong.

I would never kill anyone, not even an evil dictator, because all life is precious and I will never be the one to decide whom should live and die. The minute you start quantifying how much someone 'deserves to live', you have dehumanized them."

"And no, I am not just bound by laws of society, I am bound by moralality, which is something that is partly inherant and partly taught to me as a child. What happens in your childhood has FAR more effect on what type of person you'll be than a belief in god does. "

When I said "robbing people is fun" I wanted the responses you gave me.

I believe in God becuase of these same ideas you espouse.

  1. All life is precious
  2. I am bound by morality (my conscience)

Only instead of being content with my life map; i wondered how through mutations and random chance we came up with an idea of right and wrong. It doesn't match up with a survival anamilistic mentality. There is something that separates us from the other animals.

"Why do you feel that your life is useless without god in it?" 

If my life is simple 82 years (guess, I eat alot of pizza) in a undecillion year universe, or if my impact is only felt for 10,000 years after i die then why even try to help or love people. Why not serve myself and do exactly what the hell i want to.

If my life is only a drop in a undecillion million gallon bucket then why drip?

"If science proved tomorrow, with 100% certainty that there was no god, would you kill yourself?"

No, I would wait for "science" to prove the earth was flat again. (pun) Science can't prove some theories. It can only lend to that theory's credability. I would put the existance of an eteranal being as a theory. 

"What, then, is the ultimate purpose of things like cancer?"

I belive all bad stuff is a ripple from adam's drop in the bucket.

I already know this is lame but... Just becuase O.J. wasn't "proved" guilty how many people think he is innocent?
Note: White Bronco

 

 


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In advance I apoligize

In advance I apoligize for the plagarism, but i thought your point was very valid.

I hate it when atheists tell us theists that we're all miserable people! I may have been miserable at certain times in my life. We all have break-ups, fall outs with friends, family issues. I was unhappy at school, I was bullied both by other students and by teachers. None of this has anything to do with theism (except maybe being picked out by atheistic professors as the little conservative theist rebel).

Dark chocalate is amazingly good. But only makes me happy when i have it. One reason the poor, besides lack of education, are theists is becuase they are happy with nothing but the understanding of God.


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Crocaduck, there are some

Crocaduck, there are some good points that you brought up that I'd like to address, but I have to go to work now.

I'll get back to you when I get home.

 


Iruka Naminori
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Jacob Cordingley wrote: I

Jacob Cordingley wrote:

I hate it when theists tell us we're all miserable people! I may have been miserable at certain times in my life. We all have break-ups, fall outs with friends, family issues. I was unhappy at school, I was bullied both by other students and by teachers. None of this has anything to do with atheism (except maybe being picked out by theistic teachers as the little left-wing atheist rebel).

Telling us we can't be happy because we don't have God and their belief in God makes them happy is like me telling someone who doesn't like chocolate that he's miserable because I can't possibly enjoy life without chocolate! God makes you happy, chocolate makes me happy as do many things that actually exist! I love chocolate so much! I like it so dark it sucks in light and matter!

I loved chocolate, too, but I can no longer eat it because I have developed diabetes.  I suppose I should just nip off and kill myself.   

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Avecrien
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I decided that my life

I decided that my life should be spent as a constructive force. It makes me happy to make an effort towards that end. I do things I enjoy, but I do lots of things I don't enjoy because I feel compelled by my sense of what I should be about. I'd rather be content in my nature than feeling positive stimuli.

I know someday soon my brain will stop functioning and I'll cease to exist. I'm okay with that. Even coming to believe in God and the prospect of immortality if I finish the race, I'm still comfortable with ceasing to exist. If this god I believe in reconstitues me only for a short time, say to die in the war Jesus leads against the world leaders when he comes back, I'm cool with that too.
I should admit that I have at least one terminal disease and have been through enough deadly situations that I've had perhaps more time to get comfortable with my demise.

I feel that quality is preferable to quantity and I prefer to work with the immediate rather than distant.

In reply to the mention of never taking a human life, I would. I'm a pacifist when it comes to myself. I LOVE to fight. I used to. But something's come over me that just won't let me do it outside of play or recreation. I've been mugged. I got in the way of him taking stuff from me and others, but only offered myself up as a punching bag. If he were to try to harm those other people though, and my trying to be a replacement didn't work, I'd definitely be all over him. I'd kill someone to save others without hesitation. But then I'd get shot to save others without hesitation. Even knowing that it'll cost me existence.

I see no difference between atheist and theist value of life. I see no difference in morality. I see different views on purpose, goals, etc., but not even all that much there.
Things such as willingness to do what I described above are held or despised by people on both sides.

Mike Gravel for president!


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Sorry, but this is a giant

Sorry, but this is a giant straw-man.

crocaduck wrote:
“If all of life is meaningless, and ultimately absurd , why bother to march straight forward, why stand in the queue as though life as a whole makes sense?“ —Francis Schaeffer, The God Who Is There

Meaningless compared to what? We aren't objective bystanders in human affairs. We are every bit invested in them. It affects us directly and indirectly, it affects society directly and indirectly, what we do in our lives. That whatever the effects of our actions are may not be seen as a satisfying end in and of itself, and the earthly developments of mankind over the millennia pales in comparison to the grandiose fantasies of religion is no point against the meaningfulness and significance of life in itself; but a stark realization of the ineffectual conceit of having a universe that obeys an imagined anthropomorphic manifestation of natural laws, which we call “god.”

crocaduck wrote:
If everyone completely passes out of existence when they die, what ultimate meaning has life? Even if a man's life is important because of his influence on others or by his effect on the course of history, of what ultimate significance is that if there is no immortality and all other lives, events, and even history itself is ultimately meaningless?

Maudlin drivel. Meaning exists in the experience: whether in your life, or in a hope for future generations.

crocaduck wrote:
Suppose the universe had never existed. Apart form God, what ultimate difference would that make?

I have no idea what that's supposed to mean.

crocaduck wrote:
In a universe without God or immortality, how is mankind ultimately different from a swarm of mosquitoes or a barnyard of pigs?

If you can't see a slight difference, I don't think there's much I can do for you. This argument is nothing but a philosophical temper tantrum at not being explicitly special and meaningful. But it's such a foul and unnecessary debasement of what humanity has achieved in being an animal capable of such abstract thoughts. That you're able to ask such stupid questions is  a luxury a mosquito or pig would kill for if they had the intellect to realize their own deficits in this regard. Pigs and mosquitos, don't, that I'm aware of, have such existential angst. It's such a gift that we can have it, that we really shouldn't have it.

crocaduck wrote:
What viable basis exists for justice or law if man is nothing but a sophisticated, programmed machine?

Mischaracterization of man. Man is a highly adaptable, intelligent, self-aware, thinking, feeling, social animal.

crocaduck wrote:
Why does research, discovery, diplomacy, art, music, sacrifice, compassion, feelings of love, or affectionate and caring relationships mean anything if it all ultimately comes to naught anyway?

Just as an individual can't feel entitled to fame in their lives if they have no talent, no money, and no connections, why should humanity collectively feel entitled to a definite meaning to its existence? What do you want? A pat on the back from “god?” If so, what makes “god's” existence meaningful? You could stop the infinite regression of this premise with a prime mover argument, but it would be arbitrary to do so.

crocaduck wrote:
Without absolute morals, what ultimate difference is there between Saddam Hussein and Mother Theresa?

Relative doesn't mean nonexistent or infinitely plastic. Today, in first world western society, we work toward a morality based on respect for rights, empathy, etc. The actions of corporations and politicians aside, our attitudes have been improving. I'm sure there have been times when re-establishment of slavery would have benefitted some American land owners, but I don't see it coming back. Again, relative doesn't mean infinitely plastic.

On the other hand, if you bring up something like stonings or female circumcisions in my presence, I'll react badly to those ideas because they go against my relative (but not infinitely plastic) morality. Obviously, there are cultures that practice stupid, horrible things like this; but a lot of people disagree with them. Who's correct? It depends on if you're fundamentally interested in humane behavior and the rights of all people. After that, the specifics tend to follow. It ain't perfect, but it's the best we have (as the most socially complex species on the fucking planet). Besides, in my view, there have only ever been human-dictated morals and laws; whether humans admit to writing them, or try to legitimate them under the auspices of divine inspiration.

crocaduck wrote:
If there is no immortality, why shouldn't all things be permitted?(Dostoyevsky)

I don't know the reference, but the question assumes a moral vacuum such as does not exist.

crocaduck wrote:
If morality is only a relative social construct, on what basis could or should anyone ever move to interfere with cultures that practice apartheid, female circumcision, cannibalism, or ethnic cleansing?

Same answer.

crocaduck wrote:
If there is no God, on what basis is there any meaning or hope for fairness, comfort, or better times?

This doesn't sound coherent.

crocaduck wrote:
Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness?

We're on a living planet in a vast expanse of non-living things. It's so fucking amazing to be alive at all. Your comparison laments a loss that never occurred and demeans the fantastic reality. There was no life, there was simple life, there was complex life, there was us. Sweet. There could be variations in how it happened, but “god” is not a plausible answer and not much of a loss to philosophy.

crocaduck wrote:
What is the point in arguing on this forum if there is no true meaning to life itself?

What's the point in arguing in this forum if there is meaning to life itself?

 


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This brief existence we have

This brief existence we have is a precious thing that, once gone, will never return. There are those who seek to make it as miserable as possible for those who do not share their ancient, outdated beliefs. That, in itself, is cause enough to argue.


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crocaduck wrote: Anyone

crocaduck wrote:
Anyone having suicidal thoughts?

Not me. Are you? What made you ask this weird question anyway? Theists kill themselves more than atheists.

crocaduck wrote:
No preconceptions, assumptions, or one liners, PLEASE.

Right back at you.

crocaduck wrote:
"If all of life is meaningless, and ultimately absurd , why bother to march straight forward, why stand in the queue as though life as a whole makes sense?" —Francis Schaeffer, The God Who Is There

What makes you think life is meaningless to quote this?

crocaduck wrote:

If everyone completely passes out of existence when they die, what ultimate meaning has life?

To live.

crocaduck wrote:
Even if a man's life is important because of his influence on others or by his effect on the course of history, of what ultimate significance is that if there is no immortality and all other lives, events, and even history itself is ultimately meaningless?

Who cares? It meant something to the man. Therefore it had meaning. You're doing a lot of assuming here, despite your request that no reply assume. Hypocrite.

crocaduck wrote:
Suppose the universe had never existed. Apart form God, what ultimate difference would that make?

Since you are assuming god in this question, you must be the one to answer it.

crocaduck wrote:
In a universe without God or immortality, how is mankind ultimately different from a swarm of mosquitoes or a barnyard of pigs?

How are they different from it in a universe with god? Why does it matter that there are or aren't differences? You think you're better than all other life don't you? You need god to justify your pure arrogance and ego, to support the idea you mean more than anything else. Selfish.

crocaduck wrote:
What viable basis exists for justice or law if man is nothing but a sophisticated, programmed machine?

Interaction with other men. What kind of stupid question is this? You need a god for you to be good to others? Immoral.

crocaduck wrote:

Why does research, discovery, diplomacy, art, music, sacrifice, compassion, feelings of love, or affectionate and caring relationships mean anything if it all ultimately comes to naught anyway?

What do any of these things matter with your god? He did it all. It robs the meaning of everything mankind has ever accomplished, and attributes it to an invisible void. Sucker for punishment.

crocaduck wrote:
Without absolute morals, what ultimate difference is there between Saddam Hussein and Mother Theresa?

There isn't one, even with your pretend absolute morals. That bitch killed children as surely as hitler did.

crocaduck wrote:
If there is no immortality, why shouldn't all things be permitted?(Dostoyevsky)

What value would permitting everything have?

crocaduck wrote:
If morality is only a relative social construct, on what basis could or should anyone ever move to interfere with cultures that practice apartheid, female circumcision, cannibalism, or ethnic cleansing?

When looking at attempts to change cultures, it's obvious that any attempt to do so creates more strife and evil than doing nothing and letting them work it out on their own.

crocaduck wrote:
If there is no God, on what basis is there any meaning or hope for fairness, comfort, or better times?

Happiness. Are you unfamiliar with being happy? Hardly surprising. Theists are very unhappy in general.

crocaduck wrote:
Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness?

Why is it such a problem for you that mankind arose out of billions of years of struggle? Why do you assume such a struggle to be meaningless? You really are a selfish prick.

crocaduck wrote:
What is the point in arguing on this forum if there is no true meaning to life itself?

The meaning of life is to live. Immoral people like you would rob me of it. I will fight you to my last breath.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Okay, I'm biting, here's my

Okay, I'm biting, here's my answers:

 



1) I feel very fortunate to have the life that has been given to me.  If I'm going to be alive, I may as well enjoy my time as much I can before my ultimate end.

2) The ultimate meaning of life is what you make of it.  I don't think there needs to be a 'meaning for life'.  I am quite content knowing that I'm just a tiny part of nature as a whole.

3) If the universe never existed, neither would I, so I wouldn't know the difference.

4) We're not.

5) All species live in communities and have unwritten laws (so to speak).  As we are a lot more aware and intelligent than other speciies we have found that we connect and cross our communities a lot more and vocalize and record our laws for what we feel is the betterment of all people to make the most of their time.

6) They are things that we find enjoyment in and amazement in.  They are fascinating to us much like a new bug may be to a cat.  They interest us so we want to learn more about them.

7) Mother Theresa spent her life trying to make peoples lives better where as Hussein seem to spend his making his own life better at the cost of others enjoyment.

Cool Because allowing all things reduces the amount we can extract out of our lives.  By setting up guidelines and rules for our lives we can allow more people more enjoyment out of life and ideally find ways to maximize our efficiency and by working together to achieve goals that we could not do individually.  We can work together as a community to educate each other, develop new technologies and share ideas and teach each other about the fascinations in the world and new fascinations we can find through our shared discoveries.  We have a great benefit from working together as a group.

9) Ethnic cleansing and other things you have mentioned obviously detract from the peoples lives that are affected in a negative fashion.  As for Cannibalism...I honestly don't see a moral problem with it.  It does seem liable to produce diseases much like it does with cows, but I don't see a moral issue with eating the dead.  But since it's always been something not accepted by society, I admit to thinking it strange.

10) Hope is what you make of it.  You can hope in the ability of your community to affect change and increase fairness, comfort, and better times.  That's what this atheist movement is all about.  Hoping that if we work together we will ultimatly make the world more fair, comfortable, and a better place for all humans to live in.  I hope we're right.

11) It's a great way of wording it, but we are nothing more than that.  Sorry.  But I don't see that as a reason to not try to make the most out of the situation.

12) Because I find enjoyment in it.  And I hope to help influence change for the betterment of my own life as well as the life of people around me.  I honestly do believe that if people could forget about religion, borders, and find true globalization we would all be better off for it and be able to further advance our society as a one rather than in divided groups we would all receive more enjoyment out of life and perhaps find more ways to extend life, and extend our existance in the universe.


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Because I will use the tons

Because I will use the tons of money (that I will make one day) to build a cybernetic body and at some point replace my human brain with a quantum computer.

:: evil laugh ::

That or just live my life because its the only one I got.


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crocaduck wrote: No

crocaduck wrote:
No preconceptions, assumptions, or one liners, PLEASE.

Unfortunately all your questions fit into these categories. But they are an honest attempt to get to the bottom, so...

Quote:
"If all of life is meaningless, and ultimately absurd , why bother to march straight forward, why stand in the queue as though life as a whole makes sense?" —Francis Schaeffer, The God Who Is There

I will conflate "meaning" with "purpose". I don't see what else "meaning" could mean.

If you are a theist, then life has the meaning/purpose: "serve His purpose whether you want it to or not: he planned it that way, and you are part of his greater plan even if you are a sinner bound for hell" or possibly "a test to see whether you can get to heaven." Could be a few others, but they boil down to one basic point: the only purpose is the one God gave it.

If you are an atheist, "life" has NO purpose or meaning. You only have those things if you are a tool or a message, both of which require deliberate creation. "The meaning of life" is in that sense a gibberish sentence, like "the meaning of farts" or "the purpose of the number 4."

Life disagrees, though Smiling To life, the purpose of each individual is to be a part of a generation that will pass on a slightly better-adapted pool of genes to the next generation. The meaning of life is sex, yay!

But we are individuals and do not need to be the part of the generation that reproduces. Myself, I'm "childfree" (hate that term) by choice. So, Life's, or rather, "the process of living's" purpose for living things, isn't the same as our own personal purpose in life.

For our own personal purpose in life? We have to actually sit down and decide what we want to do with our lives. Turn on, tune in, drop out? Wild orgies? Become wealthy? Help people? What do we want to accomplish in our threescore and ten? It's up to us, and we can change our minds at any time.

Some of us want to be remembered, in some way. Others want to ensure that others in the future have an even better life. But, yes, to many of us, it seems silly to have a crappy life just so that others can have a better one, so being happy and finding beauty in small things is important. Look a ladybird just landed on my monitor Laughing out loud

Quote:
If everyone completely passes out of existence when they die, what ultimate meaning has life? Even if a man's life is important because of his influence on others or by his effect on the course of history, of what ultimate significance is that if there is no immortality and all other lives, events, and even history itself is ultimately meaningless?

None, whatsoever, beyond what that man ascribes to it himself.

Quote:
Suppose the universe had never existed. Apart form God, what ultimate difference would that make?

None whatsoever. The universe is not a message, an experiment, or a tool: so its existence would have no effect on anything. But that's OK. We can still be happy that it's here anyway. Its nice. Life a piece of meaningless driftwood on the beach. We can just enjoy it for itself, without needing to ascribe meaning to it ("driftwood! It must mean we are going to be attacked by trees!" vs "Driftwood. Pretty. I might carve it into a duckodile.")

Quote:
In a universe without God or immortality, how is mankind ultimately different from a swarm of mosquitoes or a barnyard of pigs?

No different. Why does it need to be? Does it hurt your ego to think of that? This point is why theists often care a lot more about animals: they don't think we are naturally superior.

Me, I don't. They taste good, and anyway I am superior in some ways: see, opposable thumbs, piggehs! Mwahahaha! (though I can imagine a shark saying "Me, I don't care about those humans, after all they taste good, and I am superior: see, tailfins, humies! Mwahahaha!")

Quote:
What viable basis exists for justice or law if man is nothing but a sophisticated, programmed machine?

The golden rule, silver rule, non-violence ethic, and other basic morals are observed in most social animals. They just help ensure that the society remains healthy and each individual gets a reasonably long life. In a society where everyone is always fighting, the risk to each individual would be higher, survivability would be lower. So morality and passing on morals to your children, is a trait with a definite survival advantage.

Quote:
Why does research, discovery, diplomacy, art, music, sacrifice, compassion, feelings of love, or affectionate and caring relationships mean anything if it all ultimately comes to naught anyway?

Quote:
Without absolute morals, what ultimate difference is there between Saddam Hussein and Mother Theresa?

Actually, I never liked MT, she was nasty to my grandma. But that aside, two points about "absolute morals":

1) There's no such thing. Theists don't have absolute morals: each one interprets their holy book the way they want. They also give different priorities to different rules in different situations.

2) Relative morals have a fair amount that's common for evolutionary reasons: nonviolence, reciprocation, golden & silver rules, etc: these alone are sufficient to establish a difference between despots and heroes.

Quote:
If there is no immortality, why shouldn't all things be permitted?(Dostoyevsky)

All things are: however, following common morality increases your survivability, and that of those around you, including your offspring and family.

Quote:
If morality is only a relative social construct, on what basis could or should anyone ever move to interfere with cultures that practice apartheid, female circumcision, cannibalism, or ethnic cleansing?

I don't know, since I have never considered morality only a relative social construct: at root it is part of us. It takes very extreme situations to cause an entire society to act immoral: someone wrote a book about such a society they claimed to have found, once, but on reading it I found they utterly failed to prove that these people had no morality.

Quote:
If there is no God, on what basis is there any meaning or hope for fairness, comfort, or better times?

Fairness? Nobody ever said life would be fair, and people whining "but it's not fair" tend to get short shrift. However,

Comfort? Most of the universe isn't very comfortable, but we're smart cookies, we can change it for ourselves to be nice. God won't provide us with pillows, or even air, if we go somewehre without them.

Better times? Well, again, sitting there wishing on a star won't get you those: God helps those who help themselves. Or, in the absence of God, those who help themselves, help themselves.

Quote:
Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness?

I'm not? So? It's nice while it lasts, and looking for some kind of eternal meaning to it seems a bit pointless. Let's rephrase the question:

Without picking a purpose in life for yourself, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless creation of God, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while in your futile, pointless, meaningless life in the endless darkness, before joining the billions upon billions of other souls in the afterlife?

You are still one in about ten billion humans, trillions of other creatures, and unknown infinities of other souls on other planets. With or without God, you aren't special, but you can still have a life that is worthwhile to you.

Quote:
What is the point in arguing on this forum if there is no true meaning to life itself?

An enjoyable pastime. Just because I am not an employee or slave, does that mean I should not work if I feel like it? That I shouldn't help people?

T="theists who's posts are fun-to-read, truth-seeking and insightful". Your own T will be different, but Tdewi includes { Avecrien, Cory T, crocaduck, JHenson, jread, wavefreak }


caseagainstfaith
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I haven't read every

I haven't read every response, I'll probably be redundant. But, I'll answer the way I answer this question when people ask me.

"Meaning" in inherently subjective and ephemeral. For example, if you were really busy getting some report done from work, that report has a lot of meaning TO YOU, NOW. That report might mean nothing at all to me. And it might mean nothing to you tomorrow.

Now, I concede that I understand why theists want some "universal, unambiguous" meaning to "life, universe and everything". That is why I resisted atheism myself, for a long time. I wanted a universal meaning. But, I eventually realized that there is no such thing, EVEN IF THEISM IS TRUE. For example, even if there is a God, and you will go to heaven, will that report you did today for work mean anything to you in, say, a billion years from now in heaven? What possible meaning would the report you did today have to a purely spiritual being in a billion years?

What about MAJOR events, the time your parents died? Well, once you are in heaven with your formerly deceased parents, what meaning would their death on earth have to you then? Can you really think of anything that you find meaning in here on earth that would have meaning to you in heaven?

How about your career? You spent years learning how to, say, be a computer programmer (my profession) or a counselor or a doctor, plumber, etc. Then you spend hours upon hours, days upon years, doing your programming or doctoring or plumbing, etc. What possible use would plumbing knowledge do you in heaven?  What good will Jesus' carpentry skills do him now?

So, I say again, "meaning" is subjective and ephemeral, and this is true if God exists or not. Now, some atheists deny that sounds bleak. I don't deny it, I find it not appealing myself. But, I can't do anything about it.

P.S. Yeah, I've had suicidial thoughts. I suffer from depression, and take Prozac.


Iruka Naminori
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I hate having my every

I hate having my every feeling and thought scrutinized by theists.  If I'm depressed, it must be because I haven't accepted Jesus Christ as my personal savior.  If I do something wrong, it must be because I'm not religious.

Christians get depressed and do wrong things, too, but they aren't under as much scrutiny.  In fact, the word "Christian" is a synonym for "good" in this country.  I wish I had a nickel for every time I've heard the words "he / she is a Christian" following a glowing report of how wonderful the person in question is.  "He / she is a Christian" has become a way to justify one's existence in this culture and I'm sick of it.

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I have since I was in Junior

I have since I was in Junior high, and was a Christian the first few of those years. Nothing to do with atheism, and I finally got medication!

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crocaduck
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Wow. Lots of really good, well thought out (long) responses.

Wow. Lots of really good, well thought out (long) responses.

I am really starting to like you people; not because you're atheists but because you are real. I meet way to many people who are content with blind faith and their religious bubbles.

I find myself in line with most of you. I don't want to be "good" person who follows the same "god" that Pat Robertson, and Jerry Falwell follow. "In fact, the word "Christian" is a synonym for "good" in this country" That is totally right on the money.

I found myself suicidal right when I realized I was simply a “good” person; and that my “god” was the same "god" that Pat Robertson, and Jerry Falwell follow.
I was NOT going to follow that shitty God.


I realized how pointless and futile religions are/where and I realized I was right in the middle of it. I came to the place in life that I had to figure out who I wanted to be. I decided right then and there I would seek the truth no matter who or what or where it was.

I thought (think) of myself as the Detective/ Prosecutor/ Defender / Judge and Jury. I had (have) to gather all the evidence, research, and somehow still remain unbiased. I stopped attending church completely and limited my contact with “Christian” friends. I wanted truth no matter what.

I have to admit somewhere in the discovery process I got lazy and didn’t go to religious functions because I didn’t feel like it, not because I wanted to remain unbiased.

After all the evidence was in I realized that what I thought I had believed I never really had. All I had was religiosity and not a real search for truth. I was so content sitting in church doing nothing but warming a bench. I knew the Jesus recorded by the men who knew him best was not the Jesus of the modern day, Ford driving, tithe paying, church attending instead of church being, Christian.

I realized one major argument against the existence of the Judean-Christian God was the modern day “Christian”. Which led to me this forum. Because I seek truth, and I believe most of the people on this board seek truth as well.

That said… I want more from this existence than to propagate the species and to get my rocks off. I want meaning and purpose and want to know how, when, why. I understand truth is not always simple. But I am not satisfied with random chance after random chance after random mutations gets the world I exists in. I am also not satisfied with accepting god said it happened.

I think the God of the Gap garbage is just that Garbage. So with all that fluff I actually have to take a stand. I have to state where and why I am a theist and defend that point. Which I will do my best throughout the board.

Again, Thanks to you folks who genuinely seek the truth, whether theists or atheists. I know you will find it. There are quite a few irrational responders and I hope you resolve to find truth not quick one liners.

Last note: I do not consider all atheists the same type of person. I know there are many types of atheists, those who want rationality and truth and those who just want whatever makes them happy at the moment and not what is truthful. SO- Please dont group me into the grape juice sipping republican voting homo hating crowd, and I won't make assumtuptions about you either.

If you read me slipping into the grape juice, non rational crowd - CALL me on it.


Jacob Cordingley
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crocaduck wrote: Wow. Lots

crocaduck wrote:

Wow. Lots of really good, well thought out (long) responses.

I am really starting to like you people; not because you're atheists but because you are real. I meet way to many people who are content with blind faith and their religious bubbles.

I find myself in line with most of you. I don't want to be "good" person who follows the same "god" that Pat Robertson, and Jerry Falwell follow. "In fact, the word "Christian" is a synonym for "good" in this country" That is totally right on the money.

I found myself suicidal right when I realized I was simply a “good” person; and that my “god” was the same "god" that Pat Robertson, and Jerry Falwell follow.
I was NOT going to follow that shitty God.


I realized how pointless and futile religions are/where and I realized I was right in the middle of it. I came to the place in life that I had to figure out who I wanted to be. I decided right then and there I would seek the truth no matter who or what or where it was.

I thought (think) of myself as the Detective/ Prosecutor/ Defender / Judge and Jury. I had (have) to gather all the evidence, research, and somehow still remain unbiased. I stopped attending church completely and limited my contact with “Christian” friends. I wanted truth no matter what.

I have to admit somewhere in the discovery process I got lazy and didn’t go to religious functions because I didn’t feel like it, not because I wanted to remain unbiased.

After all the evidence was in I realized that what I thought I had believed I never really had. All I had was religiosity and not a real search for truth. I was so content sitting in church doing nothing but warming a bench. I knew the Jesus recorded by the men who knew him best was not the Jesus of the modern day, Ford driving, tithe paying, church attending instead of church being, Christian.

I realized one major argument against the existence of the Judean-Christian God was the modern day “Christian”. Which led to me this forum. Because I seek truth, and I believe most of the people on this board seek truth as well.

That said… I want more from this existence than to propagate the species and to get my rocks off. I want meaning and purpose and want to know how, when, why. I understand truth is not always simple. But I am not satisfied with random chance after random chance after random mutations gets the world I exists in. I am also not satisfied with accepting god said it happened.

I think the God of the Gap garbage is just that Garbage. So with all that fluff I actually have to take a stand. I have to state where and why I am a theist and defend that point. Which I will do my best throughout the board.

Again, Thanks to you folks who genuinely seek the truth, whether theists or atheists. I know you will find it. There are quite a few irrational responders and I hope you resolve to find truth not quick one liners.

Last note: I do not consider all atheists the same type of person. I know there are many types of atheists, those who want rationality and truth and those who just want whatever makes them happy at the moment and not what is truthful. SO- Please dont group me into the grape juice sipping republican voting homo hating crowd, and I won't make assumtuptions about you either.

If you read me slipping into the grape juice, non rational crowd - CALL me on it.

I can understand that need to hold onto something. I personally don't need to hang on to the idea of God. I don't group you in with the other theists. Grouping people always seems a little bit silly.

Seriously though if you want meaning and purpose you can create your own, something worthwhile that you really want to do, that can be your meaning. As scientists and philosophers many of us want to know why or how, science certainly answers the how. The truth can also give us meaning, it is not bleak out here, it is amazing and rich with wonder, excitement. It is beautiful, there is a beauty in genes and memes, and looking at the stars and trying to fathom in your mind just how far away they actually are. It is possible to be an atheist and still have a romantic view of the world and the universe in all its glory. God really isn't needed to fill the emotional gap either anymore than the epistemological one.


DewiMorgan
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Quote: one major argument

Quote:
one major argument against the existence of the Judean-Christian God was the modern day “Christian”.

It's an awfully good thing that's a one-edged sword though. You can take the gooberousity of a lot of Christians to be evidence against Christianity only because believers should ideally be better people than unbelievers.

If the same were true of atheism, then "one argument against atheism is that a lot of atheists are total goobers" would be a telling blow.

Maybe it is? Atheism claims to be the smart choice. But there are some really dumb atheists. Few post here, but you see them on the Christian IRC channels and such, just as often as you see evangelists coming to atheistic places and spamming with bible quotes: they (and religious goobers of other flavours) are the reason that Christian communities generally feel that they're under siege, and have strict policies about trolling.

If it could be shown that there are more goobers in atheism than in theology, when corrected for things like education and wealth, then that might be evidence against it.

Quote:
I want more from this existence than to propagate the species and to get my rocks off. I want meaning and purpose and want to know how, when, why.

People claim science can't answer "why" questions. I would disagree, but I don't believe it's possible to give an "ultimate why" answer any more than it's possible to give an ultimate answer to "where" or "how", since all these words need a context.

So before you can find a "why", you need to find a context to ask it in.

Often, when people ask "why" they mean "to what end are humans on earth?" or "what purpose are we here to accomplish?" That implies forward planning. You can't have planning without a planner, a purpose without a... a purposificationer.

Now, that's sounding like the Christian "No creation without a creator" argument, so I must either defend it, or withdraw it Smiling I'll try the former.

A plan is a combination of:
1) a view of the future: a prediction.
2) a goal, or purpose: something that is desired.
3) a sequence of intended actions to change the predicted future so that the goal is accomplished.

I cannot conceive of anything having predictions, desire, and intent without intelligence. So the idea of planning, of having a future purpose, assumes a mind.

Now, if you want there to be a plan or purpose, who's mind do you imagine that plan to be in?

The alternative is that there is no plan or purpose, that the future is unwritten, and that you can write it. I find that idea sexier (both more logical and more exciting) than that there is someone else with a plan. Though, if I can find a way to stay to see the end of the story, that will make me happy too.

T="theists who's posts are fun-to-read, truth-seeking and insightful". Your own T will be different, but Tdewi includes { Avecrien, Cory T, crocaduck, JHenson, jread, wavefreak }


Nero
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Iruka Naminori wrote: I

Iruka Naminori wrote:

I hate having my every feeling and thought scrutinized by theists.  If I'm depressed, it must be because I haven't accepted Jesus Christ as my personal savior.  If I do something wrong, it must be because I'm not religious.

Christians get depressed and do wrong things, too, but they aren't under as much scrutiny.  In fact, the word "Christian" is a synonym for "good" in this country.  I wish I had a nickel for every time I've heard the words "he / she is a Christian" following a glowing report of how wonderful the person in question is.  "He / she is a Christian" has become a way to justify one's existence in this culture and I'm sick of it.

Agreed. In fact, I have heard people attempt to figure out why someone is ill. They end up saying something like, "I can't believe he has cancer. He goes to church every Sunday." While I was a clergyman, I often heard members of the flock complain that they were Christians; therefore, they should be exempt from difficulties in daily life. *shrug*

"Tis better to rule in Hell than to serve in Heaven." -Lucifer