Convince me not to believe in God.

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Convince me not to believe in God.

YOU RESPOND:

Quote:

----------------- Original Message -----------------
From: Nick
Date: Dec 16 2006 6:54 PM

My name is Nick. Im 18 and have been a Christian believer of Jesus Christ and the Bible for the past three years now. I am a rational thinker and choose not to be ignorant of both sides of any issue. I have nothing against science. I do however have somthing against unproven theories which are presented as fact. This the case of the theories of evolution and most of astronomy. I believe in the existance of a creator because there are simply to many holes and unproven theories about how the universe came to be and the origin of life. A scientific theory cannot be proven as fact unless it can be tested and retested with the same result. No scientist has ever produced living matter from nonliving matter let this is what they believe to be fact. Nor do they know where matter in the universe came from to begin with. For someone to truely deny the existance of God that person whould have to know everything about the existance of everything. Sam Harris gave and example of ones belief in God as somone believeing that there is a dimond the size of a refigeratior buried in his back yard. The same can be true for somone who clames the nonexistance of God. For someone to say "there is no God." as an absolute fact would be the same as somone saying "there is no gold in China." For that statment to be a fact that person would have to know everything about China.
I would like to go on further but I dont mean to write you a novel but I will leave you with this, it seems you have been able to convince many believers that there is no God. I callange you to do the same with me if you are confident in what you believe is true.
Nick

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Quote:My name is Nick. Im 18

Quote:
My name is Nick. Im 18 and have been a Christian believer of Jesus Christ and the Bible for the past three years now. I am a rational thinker and choose not to be ignorant of both sides of any issue. I have nothing against science. I do however have somthing against unproven theories which are presented as fact. This the case of the theories of evolution and most of astronomy. I believe in the existance of a creator because there are simply to many holes and unproven theories about how the universe came to be and the origin of life. A scientific theory cannot be proven as fact unless it can be tested and retested with the same result. No scientist has ever produced living matter from nonliving matter let this is what they believe to be fact.

Insidium mentioned this article on another thread - http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/tt/1990/may09/23124.html

Quote:
Nor do they know where matter in the universe came from to begin with.

Matter was most likely eternal. It, like god (according to theists) didn't have to come from something or be created. Percy Bysshe Shelley summed this pretty well, "It is easier to suppose that the universe has existed for all eternity than to conceive a being beyond its limits capable of creating it."

Quote:
For someone to truely deny the existance of God that person whould have to know everything about the existance of everything. Sam Harris gave and example of ones belief in God as somone believeing that there is a dimond the size of a refigeratior buried in his back yard. The same can be true for somone who clames the nonexistance of God. For someone to say "there is no God." as an absolute fact would be the same as somone saying "there is no gold in China." For that statment to be a fact that person would have to know everything about China.

Again, a strawman. An atheist does not claim to have the "absolute facts." Strong atheists don't believe a god exists because there is no evidence for one, and also some may say the attributes of the Christian god makes him an impossibility. Some hard atheists can also use astronomy to lead to the conclusion an intelligence behind it all is very unlikely. We may not know everything about the universe, but the characteristics of the basic idea of god makes him virtually impossible. There are probably several threads on this subject.


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Quote:For someone to say

Quote:
For someone to say "there is no God." as an absolute fact would be the same as somone saying "there is no gold in China." For that statment to be a fact that person would have to know everything about China.

One: I don't say there is no god.
Two: In order for your beliefs that all other gods are false to be facts, you would have to know everything.

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Quote:My name is Nick. Im 18

Quote:
My name is Nick. Im 18 and have been a Christian believer of Jesus Christ and the Bible for the past three years now.
I'm sorry to hear that.

Quote:
I am a rational thinker and choose not to be ignorant of both sides of any issue. I have nothing against science.
do you understand science? if so, why do you not follow the scientific method?
the scientific method is the process of finding out facts. science is not a set of beliefs or theories. it is a means to determine truth.

The way to determine truth is through experimentation and observation. evidence is necessary for anything to be proven scientifically.

Quote:
I do however have somthing against unproven theories which are presented as fact.
actually, theories have supporting evidence. hypotheses are unproven concepts.
if you are against believing in things that have not been proven, why do you believe in Christianity?

Quote:
This the case of the theories of evolution and most of astronomy.
evolution has been proven. evolution is both fact and theory.
the fact part is THAT evolution occurs. and this has been scientifically proven.
the theory part of evolution is HOW it occurs. and this is constantly being scrutinised and updated by scientists.
If you do not believe there is evidence for evolution, and do not believe THAT it occurs, then you are simply ignorant.

Quote:
I believe in the existance of a creator because there are simply to many holes and unproven theories about how the universe came to be and the origin of life.
first of all, this is a fallacy called Bifurcation.
even if the theories we have have holes in them, that does not automatically mean god exists. You are completely ignoring the possibility of other alternatives.

second of all, you have not bothered to state any of these theories or why they have holes in them.

Quote:
A scientific theory cannot be proven as fact unless it can be tested and retested with the same result.
actually, a theory is a concept that has supporting evidence.
Also, theory and fact are not mutually exclusive.

you know what the THEORY of gravity is?
yes, it is a theory. We know that gravity occurs, so it is a fact; we just don't know for certain that our explanation of HOW is 100% accurate.

this is exactly the same with evolution. THAT it occurs is fact. our explanation of HOW, although it is quite accurate, still needs some work.

Quote:
No scientist has ever produced living matter from nonliving matter let this is what they believe to be fact.
1. Evolution does not cover this. evolution only covers changes in genetic frequency.
Your argument is flawed; Just because scientists have not created living matter from living matter, doesn't mean it cannot occur.
You also fail to define precisely what you mean by "living"
Also keep in mind, it took approximately 13 billion years for life to actually happen here on Earth, since the big bang happened

and before you go on about the big bang:
the big bang is a theory. it is also fact.
THAT the big bang happened is fact, and we do have evidence for it. This includes, but is not limited to, the Hubble telescope's viewing limit - beyond 13.7 billion lightyears, objects travel faster than the speed of light away from us. Since objects cannot do that in fixed space, the only explanation is expanding space.
Now, the theory part of the big bang, is HOW it occured. we don't know how it occured. we only know THAT it occured.

Quote:
Nor do they know where matter in the universe came from to begin with.
there are plenty of viable theories that don't include "goddidit".
However, this is still begging the question. It has not been confirmed that the matter in the universe actually had to "come from" anywhere, or if the matter was always here. You are making the assumption that the universe had a beginning, and that originally there was nothing.

Quote:
For someone to truely deny the existance of God that person whould have to know everything about the existance of everything.
no you don't. the sheer lack of evidence for god speaks for itself.

Quote:
Sam Harris gave and example of ones belief in God as somone believeing that there is a dimond the size of a refigeratior buried in his back yard. The same can be true for somone who clames the nonexistance of God.
it's really simple. It's most logical to say something does not exist if there is no evidence.

you don't believe that there are invisible, undetectable unicorns living on the moon, do you?
you can't prove that they aren't there. But, that does not somehow magically mean they are there.

Quote:
For someone to say "there is no God." as an absolute fact would be the same as somone saying "there is no gold in China." For that statment to be a fact that person would have to know everything about China.
no it's not the same. whether or not there is gold in China, is a falsifiable claim.
However, the existence of god is unprovable, just like the undetectable, invisible unicorns on the moon.

[qote]I would like to go on further but I dont mean to write you a novel but I will leave you with this, it seems you have been able to convince many believers that there is no God. I callange you to do the same with me if you are confident in what you believe is true.
Nick

shifting the burden of proof, are we?


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I've got another idea. I've

I've got another idea. I've got a 42-inch dick. Prove it. Will you?

Didn't think so.


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Evolution is only a theory

Evolution is only a theory to creationists who look only at Darwins work and criticize known flaws within. The proof of evolution surrounds us, as simple a concept as it is. Since you are relatively familiar with science, I'll assume you know some basic genetics, such as passing on genes from generation to generation(such as hair colour, eye colour, etc). Perhaps you are aware of some genetic mutations that have been documented?

 http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5278028/

Kid with abnormal strength, for an example. Such mutations in the genome are easily passed from one generation to another. And if those genes happen to make survival easier or more possible, then they are more likely to be transmitted to others. Most theists demand instant proof of evolution, which will never happen. A random mutation followed by generations of it spreading into more and more families doesn't happen in the time it takes to do a study. Stack a number of mutations on top of one another and you have a completely different species. Hence, evolution proven.

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All I have to say is the

All I have to say is the "gold in China" analogy is getting pretty tiresome. Like, do they think we've never heard it before? It proves nothing at all, except that humans don't know everything. That's obvious enough.


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Quote: it's really simple.

Quote:
it's really simple. It's most logical to say something does not exist if there is no evidence. you don't believe that there are invisible, undetectable unicorns living on the moon, do you? you can't prove that they aren't there. But, that does not somehow magically mean they are there.


 

 

Does your definition of "most logical" entail that logic is temporally dependent? What I mean is, before Copernicus (whenever people thought that the world was flat), were people being most logical because there was no evidence to support the idea of a spherical earth? Those people were wrong (mostly because they did not have any method to evaluate this aspect of existence), but were they also being logical?

Similarly, according to you, is it *most logical* for me to say unicorns living on the moon which escape our senses do not exist if it turns out I am wrong, when in 2035 we develop a unicorn detector?

I understand that people usually agree that the pattern of existence has been such that for the most part people know more in later generations than they do in previous generations. Can you elaborate on what it means to be most logical in general?


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We've done this before,

We've done this before, hello.

This topic has been covered ad nauseum. Rational is like binary. A thing is rational, or it is irrational. One or zero. A compound statement can have rational components and irrational components. A person can be rational in one instance and irrational in another.

A person who applies rational thought to a set of irrational statements will come up with a conclusion that followed rational lines, but is invalid because the premises were invalid. So the methodology was rational, and the conclusion irrational. Thus, people who had not been to the tops of tall mountains and seen the curvature of the earth made observations based on false data and came up with false conclusions. Some of them used rational methods, some irrational.

Get it?

 And just for the record, to be completely precise, that statement should have just said "it's logical to believe that something doesn't exist if there's no evidence for it."  Why are you nitpicking something like that?

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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hello wrote: Quote: it's

hello wrote:

Quote:
it's really simple. It's most logical to say something does not exist if there is no evidence. you don't believe that there are invisible, undetectable unicorns living on the moon, do you? you can't prove that they aren't there. But, that does not somehow magically mean they are there.

 

So you're saying that you'll seriously believe in and live your life by the Code of the Great Invisible Unicorn because one day, they could actually be discovered to exist? You know, lies make baby jesus cry. I don't care for bullshit. I don't care to hear it and I don't care to speak it. If you're honest with yourself and the people on this forum, you'll admit that you have absolutely no intention of accepting the Invisible Unicorn or the Floating Speghetti Monster as fact, nor should you. No one should unless evidence exists that might support it's existence, evidence which of course we all know we won't ever find, because it's patently absurd.

You're problem is that you've confused the cause and the effect. You've embraced god because you were told it was true at an age where you didn't understand how to think abstractly and had no choice but to accept that what the adults told you was true, as with Santa Claus. No child will think to question Santa until they interact with children who have learned he's not real. Well, you've been forced then to accept the existence of god before uncovering evidence to support the hypothesis. This is the opposite of the proper scientific method, where it is imperative that a hypothesis is supported by evidence before it is embraced as fact. If you are to analyze the evidence objectively, you must first let go of your belief in God and see if the evidence leads you back there. No one can use evidence to support a negative (for instance to prove god or Santa Claus doesn't exist). Certian things then are simply left to common sense.

 


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AModestProposal

AModestProposal wrote:

 

So you're saying that you'll seriously believe in and live your life by the Code of the Great Invisible Unicorn because one day, they could actually be discovered to exist? You know, lies make baby jesus cry. I don't care for bullshit. I don't care to hear it and I don't care to speak it. If you're honest with yourself and the people on this forum, you'll admit that you have absolutely no intention of accepting the Invisible Unicorn or the Floating Speghetti Monster as fact, nor should you. No one should unless evidence exists that might support it's existence, evidence which of course we all know we won't ever find, because it's patently absurd.

well then, obviously we should stop this discussion.

 

AModestProposal wrote:
You're problem is that you've confused the cause and the effect. You've embraced god because you were told it was true at an age where you didn't understand how to think abstractly and had no choice but to accept that what the adults told you was true, as with Santa Claus. No child will think to question Santa until they interact with children who have learned he's not real. Well, you've been forced then to accept the existence of god before uncovering evidence to support the hypothesis. This is the opposite of the proper scientific method, where it is imperative that a hypothesis is supported by evidence before it is embraced as fact. If you are to analyze the evidence objectively, you must first let go of your belief in God and see if the evidence leads you back there. No one can use evidence to support a negative (for instance to prove god or Santa Claus doesn't exist). Certian things then are simply left to common sense.

 



whoa.

thanks for illuminating me not only about my belief system but also my childhood ModestProposal. i must have left this chapter out of the autobiography...

 




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thanks for clarifying


thanks for clarifying hambydammit; i wasn't nitpicking; i honestly didn't understand.


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just so i'm completely set

just so i'm completely set straight, does rational = logical?

sorry again if this seems like nitpicking. it is not--i'm dumb.  i don't like to read into what's typed because i'm afraid that i might misinterpret what is being said; i need smarter people to clarify the vocubulary used in these forums so that i can use it.


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They are interchangeable to

They are interchangeable to a degree, but thanks to the english language being so flexible, they can also be different enough to require two terms. Looking up the definitions would help you.

 

http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&lr=&defl=en&q=define:rational&sa=X&oi=glossary_definition&ct=title

 

http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&lr=&defl=en&q=define:logic&sa=X&oi=glossary_definition&ct=title

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hello: Rational refers to a

hello:

Rational refers to a process that employs sound logic.

 Logic refers to the system of thought that uses inference to arrive at conclusions based on available information.

 So, you can use logic to form sentences that go together to form a rational argument.

In other words, you must use logic to be rational.

 Does that make sense?

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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It should be noted that

It should be noted that using logic doesn't make you rational, but you can't be rational without using logic. Even though it makes it more complicated. Sticking out tongue

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Nick wrote:My name is

Nick wrote:
My name is Nick.

 

Hello, Nick. I am Heini. Nice to converse with you.

 

Nick wrote:
Im 18 and have been a Christian believer of Jesus Christ and the Bible for the past three years now.

 

I'm 23 and I was a Christian for the first 16 year of my life or so.

 

Nick wrote:
I am a rational thinker and choose not to be ignorant of both sides of any issue.

 

Glad to hear it.

 

Nick wrote:
I have nothing against science.

 

Why would you? Science is a method - a tool if you will - designed to gain ever-increasing knowledge of the world we live in. Science is more than the sum of current scientific understanding, which is limited to the scope of our hitherto reached achievements at any given moment. Being opposed to science because of disagreement with any particular theory is like being angry at a hammer because it built an aesthetically unappealing window-pane on a mansion that is not even finished yet.

 

Nick wrote:
I do however have somthing against unproven theories which are presented as fact.

 

You seem to be confused in regards to scientific terminology. Facts and theories are not mutually exclusive rungs in a hierarchy. A scientific fact is an empirical observation. For a hypothesis to be upgraded to the status of "theory," it must have supporting evidence, be grounded in facts, be falsifiable, and make predictions - among other things.

 

A theory that is not a fact, is not a theory in the scientific sense of the word.

 

As for proof there is no such thing as absolute scientific proof since science is inductive and not deductive. No matter how many observations of white swans you make, you can never claim with absolute certainty that no swans are black. No matter how many times you test the theory (and fact) of gravity, you can never prove that objects will not start falling upwards come tomorrow.

 

Nick wrote:
This the case of the theories of evolution and most of astronomy.

 

Not really, no. Not inasmuch as it is not the case with all scientific theories - including gravity. However, I would surmise that you do not object to schools teaching gravity as fact even if it can never be proven absolutely, do you?

 

Nick wrote:
I believe in the existance of a creator because there are simply to many holes and unproven theories about how the universe came to be and the origin of life.

 

That, my friend, is a logical fallacy called "appeal to ignorance." (Google it, if you must.) You claim the existence of a creator because we do not (yet) have knowledge of every single little detail of how life, the universe, and everything came to be. Why must God (which himself is absolutely and completely unproven) be the answer? Even if everything we currently hold to be true about physics and biology turned out to be wrong, "God did it" is hardly the only other alternative. Even if the universe did not come about via the Big Bang and life did not come about via abiogenesis (not evolution. Evolution deals with the diversity of life, not the origin thereof) it is entirely conceivable that it happened through some other naturalistic means - or for that matter it might have happen through some other supernatural means that had nothing to do with any gods. (Why should there only be one?)

 

Nick wrote:
A scientific theory cannot be proven as fact unless it can be tested and retested with the same result.

 

Confusion of basic scientific terminology again. See above. A theory is always based on facts. Otherwise it wouldn't be called a theory but a hypothesis. Moreover theories need not necessarily deal solely with easily performed tests. I challenge you to cram a supernova into a test-tube in a laboratory so it can be tested and retested. Yet, we are aware of facts about supernovas and we have theories of physics based on those facts even though we can never purposefully induce such star-deaths.

 

Nick wrote:
No scientist has ever produced living matter from nonliving matter let this is what they believe to be fact.

 

We know for a fact that life arose somehow. It is quite easily observable that it must have happened. Evolution is not dependent upon abiogenesis in any way, though. Evolution is merely an explanation of the diversity of life, not how it originated. As of yet, nobody claims to know how life originated. No scientists claims any explanation to be a fact. (Confused terminology aside.) There are a bunch of competing hypotheses floating around but there is no consensus about a theory of abiogenesis.

 

We do not know yet. That is still not a reason to postulate yet another unknown (God) to explain that unknown. You cannot explain an unknown with an unknown.

 

Nick wrote:
Nor do they know where matter in the universe came from to begin with.

 

You can always go further back. Matter came from an expansion of a gravitational singularity, (Big Bang) which might have come from a collision and subsequent rippling of 11th dimensional M-branes, which came from...?

 

God? Then where did God come from? A bigger God? Where did that bigger God come from?

 

Is it turtles all the way down? Perhaps. Or perhaps we can stop at an unmoving mover somewhere but there is no reason whatsoever to give that eternal starting point unverifiable attributes such as sentience and anthropomorphic personality. That's just muddying the limits of our understanding with silly make-believe.

 

Nick wrote:
For someone to truely deny the existance of God that person whould have to know everything about the existance of everything.

 

Not so. What can be asserted without evidence, can also be dismissed without evidence.

 

By your reasoning we would be unable to claim non-existence about anything at all, which is quite absurd.

 

If all-knowledge truly were a requirement for denial of existence, you could never, ever claim that trolls, elves, unicorns, the flying spaghetti monster, Russel's teapot, Chewbacca or any other number of conceivable - yet imaginary things - do not exist. Would you suggest we conduct our lives based on the premise that absolutely everything exists no matter how ludicrous? If not, which criteria would you suggest us to distinguish between real and imaginary, then?

 

Nick wrote:
Sam Harris gave and example of ones belief in God as somone believeing that there is a dimond the size of a refigeratior buried in his back yard. The same can be true for somone who clames the nonexistance of God. For someone to say "there is no God." as an absolute fact would be the same as somone saying "there is no gold in China." For that statment to be a fact that person would have to know everything about China.

 

That is a faulty analogy. We know that gold actually exists and we know that not only is it possible that gold exists somewhere in China - it is so likely that it is nearly a certainty - moreover it is easily testable. We need only call someone in China and ask them if they own a piece of gold jewellery. Or we could go to China to see for ourselves.

 

In comparison we have never, ever observed God as we have gold. Do you feel the need to know everything about China in order to claim that there are no invisible pink unicorns that can talk there?

 

Nick wrote:
I would like to go on further but I dont mean to write you a novel but I will leave you with this, it seems you have been able to convince many believers that there is no God. I callange you to do the same with me if you are confident in what you believe is true.

 

Nick

 

I cannot prove to you that God does not exist. However, I can show you why your belief in God is based on everything but the rationality you purported initially to possess. If God truly exists, your reasoning for believing is still faulty and seems to be based mostly on ignorance and unfamiliarity with critical thinking.

 

Respectfully,

 

Sketch

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Nick. By what god definition

Nick. By what god definition might you explain to me , your assumption that "something is not gawed ? "  As an atheist I find most all major "traditional" gods absurd and most usually harmful. 

The vast majority of atheist posters at this RRS site are of course, referring to 'God of Abraham' types, which they rationally oppose.  I gave that god a brief consideration when I was a kid, laughed, and moved on. Today I loathe that God of Abe dogma nightmare, polluting "Devil" of wrong thinking, creating division and suffering.

I am 100% god as you, as all is 100% god, as all is ONE, as a simple wise jewish "story" buddha, we call Jesus, simply proclaimed, as did many many others. Who messed up the "saving" message of 'ONE',  and why ???  

  Young Grasshopper Nick, check out these short videos from 2 atheist "angels"  * *                            *                My atheist Jesus would highly approve.    

Carl Sagan - "Pale Blue Dot"  , 3 min
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p86BPM1GV8M

"Wisdom of the Buddha" 8 min   
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTsb-woP3jI

   Just for your information: I am not a "Pantheist", for reasons dealing with my ideas regarding consciousness / energy / matter .... But I respect many of these non dogmatic thinkers .... 

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Pantheist&btnG=Search

   Christianity = Antichrist .... Obviously, the design of "wrong thinking" separatism, many call the the 'Devil , Satan, Lucifer' , the "Paulines", dividers , dogmists. Hear them loons at your local God of Abe / Allah churches and on TV / Radio ....

    YICKS      No more tears  ,  Kill dogma      Fight the good fight. God is ATHEIST ! We are ONE !  No Master .... No patriotism , no division ....

  .... and so "I come not to bring peace" (appeasement) with them dividers, "but a sword" of debate, to make the division known, as the dogmatic hypocrisy it is ..... "Ye are god(s)"....

Using your own wisdom mind , your own common sense, "fix my words", said a wise buddha ....


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Do you know everything there

Do you know everything there is to no about the North Pole region? So how can you ever claim that there is no Santa Clause?

 

Tell us what is your justification is for not believing every other religion, legend and myth story.

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


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It never ceases to amaze me

It never ceases to amaze me how little people think ahead. I have my faults as well, being sticking to a budget. But when one thinks about "ifs and buts" it never occurs to people like the OP. That maybe, just maybe, we have been down this route before.

To the OP, did it ever occur to you that what you LIKE believing is no different than what other people LIKE believing , and is nothing more than a gap argument?

Many famous scientists throughout history threw "God" in when they thought they couldn't get any further. But, as history has shown, future scientists look back at the ceiling and break it, finding out more than the prior scientist, putting what once was thought as magic, into the reality of the mundane.

What has happend to you is that you have, like people of various other religions, let your sense of "awe" affect your judgment. There is also a lot of nasty stuff that goes with nature as well. So unless you want to attribute things like Ecoli, Cancer, tsunamis, black holes, pedophilia to your "awe"some god, I would suggest that you  take the good with the bad and STUDY IT, without assignging a magic caregiver into the mix.

And if there were a magic caregiver, what evidence do you have other than your "teachers pet", that would demonstrate your label being  superior to all others, OTHER THAN MERELY CHEERLEADING FOR IT?

If "Allah" didn't do it, what makes you think your magic wand is any more potent? Just because someone sold you a story you like? If that is the case, I have an invisible Lamborginni that I will sell you for $100.

 

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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