Thoughts about God and Division (Moved to AvT. READ THE RULES PLEASE)

discus70
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Thoughts about God and Division (Moved to AvT. READ THE RULES PLEASE)

My attempt with this post is to provoke thought.  I’m just trying to get people to maintain and opened and an unbiased view in some since, which I know is virtually impossible but just try to bare with me here.  I try to disassociate myself from religion or any thing that encompasses  its rituals, behaviors or ideologies! I do however believe that there are a lot of good moralities and possible inspirations that can be attained from some of the literature. I don’t agree with it but there can be some good taken from it.  

Let me first start off by saying that its my opinion religion is nothing more then a system of social control. Its bigotry and constant realms of hypocrisy are endless. Being religious automatically sets up separation between people.  Religious segregation has lead to millions of murders ,deaths, injustices and unmoral behavior for 100‘s of years.  All of these actions and inhumane acts are justified how?
 “ God told me to do it.”

These types of things most of you can probably agree upon.   What I’m going to try and  present here is an idea of an open mind and further prevention of division while also bringing about a different context to what others have called “ God.” Being atheist or calling yourself atheist brings about distance from other people apposed to your views just as religion does. Granted there have been no mass murders or blood thirsty acts in the name of ATHEISIM. However It is my belief that this type of separation brings about nothing more than fear and hostility to the opposed .  This self perpetuating and repetitious  behavior has caused substantial division and unkind acts between a lot of people in this world.  Everyone is so persistent on  ripping each other apart that there missing the big picture to what is really important, and that is UNITY!  Coming together for the betterment of our world and further advancement of our species should be the primary goal here. Now I know your probably thinking… “ this guys is full of shit and this will never happen because religious people are never going to change because of their “divine” belief. This is very true but its my opinion that engaging others with a open mind and less hostile nature is what we should be after. I know that not every atheist has a hostile stance towards opposing views but the majority are. I think this might come from the oppressive nature of being considered an atheist…always feeling like you’re the under dog in a since. Don’t get me wrong this hostile stance can be said for the opposing view as well. Taking action and trying to promote a more openness and less defensive nature to  your view will probably  be more effective in the long run when debating and rebuttal is necessary.  For example the ABC debate awhile back seemed to anger people rather then provoke thought to a different perspective. The whole purpose of a debate is to some how persuade an opposing view. It became a boxing match rather then an intellectual discussion. The example to best approach these further debates can best be exemplified  by a Doctor King/Gandhi-esk approach. This might be the best way to go about It. Just an idea to roll around.

On that note you probably have gotten the impression that I am not an atheist. This is correct, I fall more on the lines of an agnostic but leaning more towards a belief in “ God.” Although my context Is very different.  Do I believe in the pearly gates or kicking back up in a clouds with good old JC after I die?…..No. I don’t believe a volcano birthed me, nor do I believe in Mohamed  or a cow, so on and so forth. To be honest I don’t know what to believe, I would like to think that after we die we some how get a chance to experience the universe and all of its  unknowns. That would be pretty cool I think. For some reason I want to believe that there is more to life then just  living. This might be a naïve approach but that’s just where I’m kind of at right now. I’m open to many possibilities and hope as I get older my philosophy will evolve into something smarter and maybe more practical. An atheist’s biggest argument is how do you know there is a god?  What is the proof? My answer is I don’t know, and I have no physical evidence.  My counter argument is how do you know that there is not a God or being, or creator or whatever. Our perception of this world and universe has expanded tremendously, we have discovered things that we didn’t know existed. Our ability to learn and continue to learn is the key here.  I guess my only hope is that after we die we will finally get to know all the answers to all the unknown question. Call that believing in a God, after life or whatever because your guess is as good as mine. My point is that we are constantly learning new things about our existence all the time. Why be closed minded and pigeon hold yourself to just one belief. Let us strive for the unknown, the future and to always have an open mind to new possibility. Once again these are just my thoughts/opinions.  I’m going to assume that I might catch some hostility here but will welcome any intelligent rebuttals, arguments and disagreements.  However I will not debate with ignorant or hateful comments.

I wish everyone well, and GOD BLESS….hahaha just kidding, come on you gotta have a little fun!


 


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Quote:My counter argument is

Quote:

My counter argument is how do you know that there is not a God or being, or creator or whatever.

GAAHH! [Or some other generic exclamation of frustration]. Why, why why can people never detect the special pleading here! In any other case they would spot the ad ignorantium fallacy explicit in this "counterargument". What is so hard to understand about this?

Quote:

guess my only hope is that after we die we will finally get to know all the answers to all the unknown question.

Second generic exclamation of frustration

http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/15860

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

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deludedgod wrote:Quote:My

deludedgod wrote:

Quote:

My counter argument is how do you know that there is not a God or being, or creator or whatever.

GAAHH! [Or some other generic exclamation of frustration]. Why, why why can people never detect the special pleading here! In any other case they would spot the ad ignorantium fallacy explicit in this "counterargument". What is so hard to understand about this?

Probably just a lack of experience with the material. discus70, a few things to work on: clarify the positions you're talking about, and it'll be easier to discuss them on this site. For example, it's my position that we don't know that there is not a certain being that you could invent, it's just highly unlikely. It's highly unlikely that your personal conception of something that has never presented itself actually exists in reality.

Quote:

guess my only hope is that after we die we will finally get to know all the answers to all the unknown question.

And you can hope whatever you like. We tend to discuss what we know of reality here.


 

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fabulae! nil satis firmi video quam ob rem accipere hunc mi expediat metum. - Terence


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discus70 wrote:I do however

[EDIT: FYI, this particular area is not for Theists. You haven't openly painted yourself as a theistic fucktard but the mods might move this thread into one of the other forums anyway]

discus70 wrote:
I do however believe that there are a lot of good moralities and possible inspirations that can be attained from some of the literature. I don’t agree with it but there can be some good taken from it. 

Yes, if one is patient and determined they can find useful material in just about any writing. No matter how horrific or absurd the rest of the material may be.

Quote:
Being atheist or calling yourself atheist brings about distance from other people apposed to your views just as religion does.

Sam Harris has talked at length on the idea of "calling ourselves atheists". It unfortunately allows us to be grouped into an imaginary social or philisophical class. He says that we should stop using words like atheist and start using words like reason and logic etc. Neat stuff, do a Google search, he at least partially agrees with this particular point.  

Quote:
... religious people are never going to change because of their “divine” belief. This is very true but its my opinion that engaging others with a open mind and less hostile nature is what we should be after.

Quote:
For example the ABC debate awhile back seemed to anger people rather then provoke thought to a different perspective. The whole purpose of a debate is to some how persuade an opposing view. It became a boxing match rather then an intellectual discussion. The example to best approach these further debates can best be exemplified  by a Doctor King/Gandhi-esk approach. This might be the best way to go about It. Just an idea to roll around.

Debatable. There are some who say that polite discourse is one of the reasons religious thinking has been able to continue as far as it has. Pat Condell suggests that, if we'd stopped pulling our punches a couple of hundred years ago, maybe religion would already be on it's way out.

Also, different approaches accomplish different things. Different audiences are moved by different levels of energy and conflict. So, to say that gentle hugging is the only best approach is actually a rather narrow idea. While functioning in the world as calmly and reasonably as possible would be desired, it is not correct to assume that it will always be appropriate or affective.

Quote:
I know that not every atheist has a hostile stance towards opposing views but the majority are. I think this might come from the oppressive nature of being considered an atheist…always feeling like you’re the under dog in a since.

Statements like this will get you ripped to shreds. FYI. Atheists on a forum like this probably look hostile because we are generally only approached with lunacy (or idiocy, on a good day).

Quote:
My counter argument is how do you know that there is not a God or being, or creator or whatever.

That is really idiotic. Google Russell's Teapot and consider how idiotic your statement sounds.

Quote:
Why be closed minded and pigeon hold yourself to just one belief. Let us strive for the unknown, the future and to always have an open mind to new possibility.

You're confusing two different ideas. 1) strive to understand the unknown and keep an open mind 2) strive to understand the univers and make up answers where you have none... and accept them as valid without even a shred of evidence or even reasonable defense.

One thing is good, the other is counter productive... I'll let you decide which is which.


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Why did you start another

Why did you start another topic on the exact same thing?


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One guy I admire calls the

One guy I admire calls the separation a crime. But it is also clear, that we will be never the same. We can never achieve a peaceful society or group by homogenity. The only way to it is accepting another good idea, which is called Unity in diversity. In practice, it is like I go here, on atheistic forums, let myself be known and study the local rationalists (namely biologic machines), then I go to Christianic forum, or even to a meetings of Christians (namely God's children), doing there the same thing, and once or twice per week I meet with my fellow esoterics (namely spiritual beings in physical body) and we have a chat, tea, cookies and a few hours of meditation. Wherever I go, whatever I see, fits into the great system of things, that the universe has a sense. This sense is a bit complex, but nothing less can be expected from the universe.

As for the great questions of life and death, I use the esoteric worldview, which gives a certain answers, which I fortunately have backupped by a private, personal evidence. I learn to understand how is this worldview alien and bizarre for people, who doesn't possess this evidence. This and other worldviews are fascinating, and as I think, they all in some sense and degree reflect the highest Truth. My knowledge allows me to see this all united, to condemn nobody, and to give everyone a place in the great model of the world. Synthesis, unity in diversity, organic cooperation, brotherhood, equality, justice, freedom, peace, and most importantly, a practical realization of this all.

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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First off welcome.Second,

First off welcome.

Second, why did you start 2 threads with the same exact subject matter?

discus70 wrote:

On that note you probably have gotten the impression that I am not an atheist. This is correct, I fall more on the lines of an agnostic but leaning more towards a belief in “ God.” 
 

Third. Since you admit you are not an atheist this might be more appropriate in general conversation not here as you appear to be an agnostic theist.

 

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

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


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Let me first say for some

Let me first say for some reason I'm having trouble figuring out how to copy the quotes from others into my post.  I think it's my browser or something.

 

My intention with this post was not to try and convert others or make them see the " light" so to speak.

I was brought up without religion, I haven't been to a church since I was around the ages of 8 or 9,  I'm 24 now. I have no formal idea or conditioning with religious practices. Everything I know has been self taught or learned through experience.

I do understand that some of my statements could have gotten miss interpreted or come off a little hazy. Let me sum up what I was trying to get at.

1. Constant division will not further progress

2. Keep an open mind to multiple possibilities.

 

I never tried to GET anyone to understand the universe. This is virtually impossible and completely ludicrous at this point.  I was simply making the point that we are constantly learning  therefore why keep to one solid belief. That's what religious people do.  The fact is nobody knows what happens after we die. This is an impossible question to answer. Regardless if your an atheist, christian, Muslim or whatever. Everyone assumes and can make inferences but there is no proof. ( and yes i know that we get put into a coffin or decide to get cremated then buried or spread out over the land to decompose.... that's not what I'm talking about. )

 

I was also hoping that some of you could show me some links, articles or videos. One was given to me earlier but I would welcome many more.

 

Once again thinks for you time and take care.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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I couldnt figure out how to

I couldnt figure out how to delete my other thread that was posted in the radio section if that is what your talking about. Please delete or tell me how to

 

 

I also apologize if this topic was supposed to go under antoher category. I just figured I would get the best possible response by making a closer connection with the belief system I targeted in my post.


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 No worries.  Freethinking

 No worries.  Freethinking Anonymous is for atheists only, and since you claimed in this very thread to not be an atheist, it's not appropriate for that forum.

As far as the quote function goes, have a look HERE.

Only mods can delete or move threads, and once someone has responded to a post, you cannot edit your own either.  I'll look for your post in the radio forum and move it to an appropriate place or delete it if it is inconsequential.

 

 

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

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discus70 wrote: I do

discus70 wrote:

 

I do understand that some of my statements could have gotten miss interpreted or come off a little hazy. Let me sum up what I was trying to get at.

1. Constant division will not further progress

2. Keep an open mind to multiple possibilities.

 

I never tried to GET anyone to understand the universe. This is virtually impossible and completely ludicrous at this point.  I was simply making the point that we are constantly learning  therefore why keep to one solid belief. That's what religious people do.  The fact is nobody knows what happens after we die. This is an impossible question to answer. Regardless if your an atheist, christian, Muslim or whatever. Everyone assumes and can make inferences but there is no proof. ( and yes i know that we get put into a coffin or decide to get cremated then buried or spread out over the land to decompose.... that's not what I'm talking about. ) 

Throughout history it has been the theists that have dominated and enforced beliefs. Today more and more people are standing up for their right to not believe. There is no compromise on this issue. Religious persons have created the environment for centuries whereby the non-believers are treated as outcasts. This ends now. We have the right to not accept their fantasies and delusions. That they don't wish to relinquish the power they weld is clear. Hence division is inevitable. This does not mean I won't tolerate their beliefs only that I deserve the same respect.

As someone that was brought up in a religious environment I studied and researched for years before I reached the point of disbelief. I have an open mind to further knowledge and understanding, though it needs to be based in reality not in the fanciful world of emotion and delusion. 

Some things may never be known. Death appears fairly permanent to all appearances. As no one has come back to indicate otherwise it is fairly obvious that death is the end. The simple fact that we absolutely know that we will die someday is the major cause for all of the fantasy and conjecture. Since we know this we may try to reject it and think, gee there's gotta be more than this, what a waste. This is how the theists get to you, because they promise you, yes there's more. The only sure thing a religious belief provides is redistribution of wealth. Wishful thinking so far has not won me Lotto.

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

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


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discus70 wrote:I never tried

discus70 wrote:

I never tried to GET anyone to understand the universe. This is virtually impossible and completely ludicrous at this point.  I was simply making the point that we are constantly learning  therefore why keep to one solid belief. That's what religious people do.  The fact is nobody knows what happens after we die. This is an impossible question to answer. Regardless if your an atheist, christian, Muslim or whatever. Everyone assumes and can make inferences but there is no proof. ( and yes i know that we get put into a coffin or decide to get cremated then buried or spread out over the land to decompose.... that's not what I'm talking about. )

I was also hoping that some of you could show me some links, articles or videos. One was given to me earlier but I would welcome many more.

Once again thinks for you time and take care.

What makes you think anyone here is necessarily "keep[ing] to one solid belief"? Atheism is not a belief. That means atheists are almost by definition open to investigating and taking on board any ideas which seem to have something going for them.

The richness of human culture is driven by the range of individual outlooks on the world, so we should not be going overboard to "unify" our beliefs.

The important thing is to discourage dogmatic thinking which can't tolerate the existence of people holding other points of view, which is mostly seen in people with strong religious and political idealogies.

AS to what happens after we die, it is not true to say we have no indications of what happens.

There is massive evidence that our consciousness simply is permanently dissipated once our brain activity ceases. We can't prove it doesn't persist in some other realm, but we have no unambiguous evidence that it does. Whenever we have been able to carefully investigate 'ghost' reports, they have always turned out to have mundane explanations. Several prominent people have made concientious undertakings that if they found themselves in a spirit realm after death they would do their best to leave some specific indication of the sort attributed to 'spirits', but nothing was ever detected.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

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bobspence1Atheism is a

bobspence1

Atheism is a belief.  You can only infer and try to use rational possibilities, outcomes and predictions.  In order for atheism to not be considered a belief it must conclude with 100% accuracy  that nothing happens after we die.  Same applies for theist's and religious people, for them to prove that God exists factual evidence would have to be presented.  We all know this has not happened yet. Therefore BOTH are just beliefs.

 

Its my opinion that Atheist's are not as open minded as you try to lead on. In some aspects their as close minded as evangelical Christians. This self in-titled /superiority complex that takes place is ridiculous and very unnecessary when trying to bring about a positive and logical debate. Lets not discourage anyone from there beliefs or ideologies. However we can discourage the hostile nature that these arguments take place. (this was part of my point in my first post) You bring up a great point about the richness in our culture. There is no doubting that having diversity can be a great thing when utilized correctly. However once you start disassociate yourself  because of those differences then it can become negative. We are all people living in this world with similar emotions, problems and experiences. Finding a common ground will help maintain a more peaceful world regardless of ideology's or culture. Maybe i failed in my intentions with my first post. I was only trying to advocate a constant state of openness on the deepest level and I think once we can do this it will lead to a substantial decrease in the boundaries we try to build up for our own selfish preservation.


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Quote:Atheism is a

Quote:
Atheism is a belief.

Incorrect. Atheism is a lack of belief. That's all. It is saying, "I have no compelling reason to believe in a deity, so I do not." An atheist does not necessarily make the positive claim, "There is no God," - it simply says that, in lieu of evidence, 'faith' in a deity is irrational.

Quote:
Its my opinion that Atheist's are not as open minded as you try to lead on. In some aspects their as close minded as evangelical Christians. This self in-titled /superiority complex that takes place is ridiculous and very unnecessary when trying to bring about a positive and logical debate.

*Sigh*

Imagine I told you that there was a monster living under your bed - but it turned intangible every time you went to look for it. I point-out some very ambiguous 'evidence' to try and convince you that the monster is real (perhaps pointing to the number of mysterious disappearances in the world every year, or some odd marks I fin here or there around your property), and even make-up some total fabrications about it.

You, of course, remain unconvinced. It's not that you're opposed to the very idea - I just have not met the necessary burden of proof to demonstrate that there's a real, dangerous entity lurking under the space where you sleep.

However, because you don't yield to some unreasonable demands I make 'for your own safety', because you don't believe I'm correct about the monster's existence, I get angry and start yelling about how close-minded you are, what a fool you are, how you're trying to suppress important safety tips, etc. I think it's fair to call my reaction one of severe psychosis.

 

Yet, somehow, you fail to recognize that this is the very same reasoning you yourself have just espoused. Because we aren't satisfied with a bald claim about a magical entity, we're 'closed minded' and 'dogmatic', as though every single naked assertion and untestable idea has some intrinsic value and *must* be kept in mind. Answer me honestly: do you believe in the lost continent of Atlantis? Do you believe that perhaps the Earth may be flat? Do you believe in the existence of the undead?

Not likely. You can't absolutely 'prove' that those things aren't real, but you don't need to - there simply isn't good reason to lend credence to the assertions. It isn't 'closed minded' to expect evidence to be presented for a claim.

Quote:
Lets not discourage anyone from there beliefs or ideologies.

No. Let's. Really.

Because if we sit by and tepidly twirl our thumbs while they parade around the notion of a 6,000 year old Earth, it would be a tragically short amount of time before most people believed them.

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"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
February 27, 1940


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discus70

discus70 wrote:

bobspence1

Atheism is a belief.  You can only infer and try to use rational possibilities, outcomes and predictions.  In order for atheism to not be considered a belief it must conclude with 100% accuracy  that nothing happens after we die.  Same applies for theist's and religious people, for them to prove that God exists factual evidence would have to be presented.  We all know this has not happened yet. Therefore BOTH are just beliefs.

First, atheism is not specifically a belief about what happens after we die, it is about the existence of God(s), which is a separate issue.

Second, no matter how you play with words, there is clear difference in kind between believing in a God and not believing in any such entities. To justify belief one would require actual evidence pointing to the existence of such an entity. To justify not believing merely requires that we have not come across any convincing evidence. It does not require actual evidence against the existence of God which is probably not possible. What is possible is actual proof of non-existence if a logical contradiction in the definition of the specific God concept can be demonstrated.

If I wanted to argue against your belief, I would have to ask you to present your reasons for belief and try and demonstrate flaws in those reasons. For you to argue against my position, it still depends on your reasons - you have to defeat all my attempts to demonstrate flaws in your arguments. You are the one with specific beliefs. My justification is a claim of absence of positive justification, which can only be addressed by presentation of what is considered to be valid justification for belief.

Quote:

Its my opinion that Atheist's are not as open minded as you try to lead on. In some aspects their as close minded as evangelical Christians. This self in-titled /superiority complex that takes place is ridiculous and very unnecessary when trying to bring about a positive and logical debate. Lets not discourage anyone from there beliefs or ideologies. However we can discourage the hostile nature that these arguments take place. (this was part of my point in my first post) You bring up a great point about the richness in our culture. There is no doubting that having diversity can be a great thing when utilized correctly. However once you start disassociate yourself  because of those differences then it can become negative. We are all people living in this world with similar emotions, problems and experiences. Finding a common ground will help maintain a more peaceful world regardless of ideology's or culture. Maybe i failed in my intentions with my first post. I was only trying to advocate a constant state of openness on the deepest level and I think once we can do this it will lead to a substantial decrease in the boundaries we try to build up for our own selfish preservation.

People can be a-holes on either side of this particular divide, but we see many instances of atheists receiving threats, including death threats, because of their position, whereas I am not aware of an atheist returning the favour. So it does seem that at least some versions of religious belief do inspire some people to be far worse than just being a bit smug.

There is a least as much, if not more, rejection of association with atheists from the religious side than the reverse, so I hope you are being fair and arguing for this togetherness with believers as much as you are with us.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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I think I'm getting miss

I think I'm getting miss understood here. First off I never debated the definition of an atheist. I know what an atheist is.

 

Second I need to clarify something. My definition of what god might be, should not be associated with biblical or historical reference. Maybe I shouldn't have said God. My general thinking is rather in the hope and not the belief.  Something created something. The complexity of this Universe is unbelievable. I don't know how it came to be ( yes i know about the big bang but something created the big bang and something created that and so on.) I'm clueless in this since. Maybe my belief in God comes from the unknown. You know I'm not going to lie, I'm really at a loss here. I have no clue how to contextualize what I consider to be god. There is no basis or ground that I can stand on here. I have no proof or evidence. I can sit here till I'm blue in the face and say God is all around us by simply viewing a beautiful sunset, gazing at the stars for hours, being able to have emotional connections other humans and animals. This doesn't work though and only gets written off as simple observation. There just seems to be a since of deep connection in all this. This is just something I cant help, and to try and view this world and all that it encompasses objectively with no meaning behind it is so inconceivable to me. My initial intentions for writing what I did were to try bring a non objective approach to some of these issues. I see that I have failed in some aspect. I never tried to convince anyone there was a god, but people tried to convince me that there wasn't. All i did was state my view while trying to radicate an open opinion. An unbiased view on the world and others so that we can tear down the walls that inhibit future growth as a society. These are all just my opinions/beliefs. I'm not imposing them on anyone.


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discus70 wrote:I think I'm

discus70 wrote:

I think I'm getting miss understood here. First off I never debated the definition of an atheist. I know what an atheist is.

 

Second I need to clarify something. My definition of what god might be, should not be associated with biblical or historical reference. Maybe I shouldn't have said God. My general thinking is rather in the hope and not the belief.  Something created something. The complexity of this Universe is unbelievable. I don't know how it came to be ( yes i know about the big bang but something created the big bang and something created that and so on.) I'm clueless in this since. Maybe my belief in God comes from the unknown. You know I'm not going to lie, I'm really at a loss here. I have no clue how to contextualize what I consider to be god. There is no basis or ground that I can stand on here. I have no proof or evidence. I can sit here till I'm blue in the face and say God is all around us by simply viewing a beautiful sunset, gazing at the stars for hours, being able to have emotional connections other humans and animals. This doesn't work though and only gets written off as simple observation. There just seems to be a since of deep connection in all this. This is just something I cant help, and to try and think objectively with no meaning behind any of this inconceivable to me. My initial intentions for writing what I did were to try bring a non objective approach to some of these issues. I see that I have failed in some aspect. I never tried to convince anyone there was a god, but people tried to convince me that there wasn't. All i did was state my view while trying to radicate an open opinion. An unbiased view on the world and others so that we can tear down the walls that inhibit future growth as a society. These are all just my opinions/beliefs. I'm not imposing them on anyone.

Well, we appreciate what you are saying about what you feel when you contemplate the world.

All we ask is that you similarly accept that we are speaking just as honestly when we say that while many, if not all of us, will experience similar emotional reactions to the wonder and beauty that can be seen in the world around us, we know from direct personal experience that it does not diminish that experience if it is not tied to the belief in some transcendent higher being. It can indeed enhance it, if one has by the study of science come to have some insight into the true scale of the Universe and its workings, to appreciate how it has given rise to us and all the rest of the biosphere on Earth.

We can indeed have feelings of connection with other creatures, in fact rejection of traditional Christian ideas of our separate creation allows us to appreciate fully how closely related we are to the rest of the living world.

You say you see God all around you. I say I see the marvellous complexity and connectedness, just without the overlay of an unecessary conception, ie some form of God. I marvel at it for what it is, not as the handiwork of some strange being, who, if he existed, would also have to take the blame for many of the terrible things that happen in the world as well. Why would he create the horrors of disease and earthquakes and drought and flood?

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

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You were addressing Bob, but

You were addressing Bob, but I hope you don't mind if I cut in.

discus70 wrote:
Atheism is a belief.

Yes it is.

discus70 wrote:
In order for atheism to not be considered a belief it must conclude with 100% accuracy  that nothing happens after we die.

I'm not sure I follow. Are you saying that "belief" automatically disqualifies something as being true? Atheism is a belief, sure. But something happening after we die is unrelated.

discus70 wrote:
Same applies for theist's and religious people, for them to prove that God exists factual evidence would have to be presented.  We all know this has not happened yet. Therefore BOTH are just beliefs.

But one belief involves a magical creature, and the other involves no magical creatures. So what's more likely? 

discus70 wrote:
I was only trying to advocate a constant state of openness on the deepest level and I think once we can do this it will lead to a substantial decrease in the boundaries we try to build up for our own selfish preservation.

There's a balance, though, between total trust and total paranoia. I wouldn't necessarily want to always trust everything everyone said, because I think that would be impractical. The same would hold for never trusting anyone. I don't consider that balance "selfish", it's just pragmatic.

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This is where i struggle.

This is where i struggle. The only thing I can say is that if there is a god or higher power at be then his interactions are completely hands off.  The entity set the actions into motion and nothing more. Where allot of religious people fail is their belief in the fact that God has influence in their lives. This is complete bullshit to me. Why does God have influence in their life over the life of a starving child or 1,000 of Africans that are born with aids. Its a completely arbitrary statement. I honestly dint know what to believe. I was thinking early what it would mean for others (religious people) to think as an atheist . If what you stand for is correct and could be proven to all the religious ideologies of the world, the adjustments to peoples lives would be drastic. People of faith and religion tend to believe so much in the after life that the tend to forget about all the important things in life. There are so many people that go from day to day hoping that some sort of divine interventions is going to take hold of their lives. This is such a waste of existence. I really do think if a lot of people had their religion taken away from them this world might become a much better place. You have to make the most of you got....regardless of the outcome in the end.


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discus70 wrote:This is where

discus70 wrote:
This is where i struggle. The only thing I can say is that if there is a god or higher power at be then his interactions are completely hands off.  The entity set the actions into motion and nothing more.

You would have that attitude in common with many of the founding fathers of the United States.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deism

discus70 wrote:
I honestly [don't] know what to believe.

As much as that's a scary place to be, it's also a great opportunity to be sure of what you believe. But still, it is scary for people to challenge long-held beliefs, because that might mean that they were wrong for a long time. Being wrong (even a little) is very uncomfortable. Anyway, I'd encourage you to trust your own judgment on these things. It's easier to deal with the world if you begin to see it for what it is.

discus70 wrote:
People of faith and religion tend to believe so much in the after life that the tend to forget about all the important things in life.

Like life! With some people that's very true.

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discus70 wrote:This is where

discus70 wrote:

This is where i struggle. The only thing I can say is that if there is a god or higher power at be then his interactions are completely hands off.  The entity set the actions into motion and nothing more.

Or possibly there is no such entity at all.

discus70 wrote:

Where allot of religious people fail is their belief in the fact that God has influence in their lives. This is complete bullshit to me. Why does God have influence in their life over the life of a starving child or 1,000 of Africans that are born with aids. Its a completely arbitrary statement.

Kind of indicates that their ideas are based in fantasy and wishful thinking doesn't it?

discus70 wrote:

 If what you stand for is correct and could be proven to all the religious ideologies of the world, the adjustments to peoples lives would be drastic. People of faith and religion tend to believe so much in the after life that the tend to forget about all the important things in life. There are so many people that go from day to day hoping that some sort of divine interventions is going to take hold of their lives. This is such a waste of existence. I really do think if a lot of people had their religion taken away from them this world might become a much better place. You have to make the most of you got....regardless of the outcome in the end.

You have some good basic ideas here. Religion takes the meaning of life away and defines it to be only for the glory of the god. Life and people are what is important not pleasing an imaginary being. If people realized that this life and other people were that which were the highest value what a difference that would actually make in the world. 

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

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


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 Discus, you seem to be

 Discus, you seem to be having some issues with the difference between knowledge and belief.  Let me give you a brief breakdown (very brief) to give you an idea where you might be hanging up in your thought processes:

Belief - holding something to be true.  Belief is not truth-contingent.  That is, people believe what they believe, regardless of whether it's true or not.  One belief is exactly the same as another belief, if there are no other qualifiers to the belief.

Knowledge - There are qualifiers to belief, as it turns out.  Knowledge is "justifiable true belief."  By justifiable, we mean that there is a sound epistemological reason for holding the belief, that the object of belief has a valid ontology, and that the believer is aware of and believes the epistemology and ontology.  True means that it corresponds to something existing in the objective universe.

Here we have to digress slightly because there are two kinds of logic which lead to belief and knowledge.  You are probably aware of deduction and induction, but I wonder if you know how they work together.  Deduction is that which must certainly be true.  All deductive conclusions are derived ultimately from axioms, the most well known being the axiom of identity.  Descartes says, "I think, therefore I am," but a more proper way of thinking of it is that the axiom is proved through retortion.  The act of asking the question proves it true, for in order to ask, "Do I exist?" I must exist.

Much of our logical thought in life is based on deduction, but deduction only works with 100% certainty in the abstract:

1) All cats are felines.

2) Tom is a feline.

3) Therefore, Tom is a cat.

On paper, this is certainly true.  However, the senses are unreliable, and there is forever a disjunction between theory and reality.  We can never be 100% certain that the premises hold true in the material universe.  That is, maybe all cats aren't felines.  Maybe Tom is not a feline.  Even if it's a slim chance, we have to admit that reality is never 100% certain.

This is where induction comes in.  In a way, it works exactly backwards from deduction, where we go from general to specific.  Induction moves from specific to general.

1) All cats ever seen have been felines.

2) Therefore, all cats are felines.

We don't know it for certain.  Perhaps we missed a cat that's not a feline.  (I know... feline is a definition for cat... just run with it for illustration.)  No matter how unlikely, we must accept the possibility of being wrong about the general conclusion because it's impossible for us to know for certain that we have seen all cats and seen them correctly.

This is where probability comes in.  Bayes theorem is designed to solve problems just like this.  With enough data, we can reach the answer that all cats are felines with, say, a .99^100 probability.  So insanely probable that if we were to construct a bar graph to show how close it is to one that we wouldn't be able to fit a single atom in the space left for the probability against it.

It's been said that Bayes theorem can even predict whether the sun will come up tomorrow.

Now, here's the kicker.  Probability is math, which is based on deduction.  There is really a tie between induction and deduction.  If we have ten cookies, five plain and five chocolate chip, we can do some simple math to determine the probability of picking a chocolate chip randomly out of the pile after each cookie has been chosen.  On the first draw, there is a 50:50 chance of getting chocolate chip.  Here's where deduction comes in.  Though the outcome of the draw is not certain, the probability of the draw is!

In other words, it's certain that there is a 50:50 chance of picking chocolate chip, given the parameters mentioned.

This becomes very important when we start talking about things like god or the afterlife.  Think of it this way.  I can't say with certainty that there is no afterlife or that there is no god.  However, given every bit of knowledge available to me, if I were to work out a probability for the existence of either, I would come out with such bad odds that you could expect to win the lottery millions of times before you could expect god or an afterlife to exist.

The existence of god or the afterlife is uncertain.  The probability against them (were someone to work it out completely... perhaps someone has... I don't know) is certain.  You don't have to work it out.  It's unnecessary.  You can use the laws of logic and your knowledge of human history and science.  Can you think of anything for which there is zero evidence, the object of which is internally contradictory, and the terms used to describe it nonsensical, that exists with any reasonable degree of certainty?  There is nothing, obviously.   There is a nearly infinite possible number of things for which there is zero evidence, which are internally contradictory, and are not described coherently.

Hopefully, you know what happens when you start plugging infinity into math equations designed for real numbers.  You get nonsense.  That's literally what the probability of god is.  Nonsense.

(By the way, I know I'm mangling the math here.  I'm just trying to make the broad point.  I'm sorry if any math people are cringing or crying.)

So... (I know I said this was brief.  It is.  Trust me.)  when someone says they're an atheist, all they're doing is acknowledging the odds.  They aren't making a statement of 100% certainty unless they don't know any better.  Certainty is reserved for math, axioms, and tautologies.  Anything else functions in the land of probability.

 

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

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Quote:.99^1000.99 raised to

Quote:

.99^100

0.99 raised to the power of 100 is approximately 0.36.

I think you just meant "0.99".

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

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Hambydammit wrote:1) All

Hambydammit wrote:

1) All cats are felines.

2) Tom is a feline.

3) Therefore, Tom is a cat.

On paper, this is certainly true.   

 

Actually it's not. This is the logical equivalent of

 

1. All women are humans

2. Bob is a human

3. Therefore, Bob is a woman

(1) sould be "all felines are cats. " or it should be

2. Tom is a cat

3. Therefore Tom is a feline.

 

Edit: To be clear to anyone reading who hasn't actually taken a logic course, yes the premises and conclusion are true. The cocnclusion still doesn't follow from the premises in the original presentation.

 

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So, Hamby, I guess that your

So, Hamby, I guess that your maths requires a basic premise, that the notions of God or any other thing what an atheist disbelieves in, are constant. That we mean any kind of God with similarly improbable divinity and existence. Sure, then the logical conclusion is the one you presented.

However, this worldview is betting on certainity a lot. (a polite way how to say that it's getting near a circular logic) It was proven that there is always more to discover, that the new knowledge never stops appearing, but increases the rate. This suggests, that there is more what we don't know yet, than what we know. Unfortunately, it seems that the longer the atheism is being held, the more diffcult it is to revise it, if the need arises. It would be nice to see the people actually change their opinion if they would see something substantial enough. The problem is, that the only substantial things are already within a scientific paradigm, and everything else is doubted and ignored - just for not being understood or repeatable. A banal rationale can be made up for anything, which may answer 'how', but not 'why'.

This is why my notion of atheism is a bit extended. It doesn't judge a belief, hypothesis, presumption, knowledge, of (g)God(s) or anything like that as it's subject. It considers if a person worships, fears, loves, hates, or appeases this presumed being(s). (more complete list is here) I believe that even if some god would be scientifically proven to be real, all of the local atheists would acknowledge his existence, but they wouldn't join the worshipping crowds, and so they would remain atheists by my definition.
Maybe this definition isn't even atheism, maybe there's already another name for it, did anyone ever hear about it?
 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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 Quote:0.99 raised to the

 

Quote:
0.99 raised to the power of 100 is approximately 0.36.

I think you just meant "0.99".

Ergh.... this is what I get for just plopping something down in a rush.  I was trying to express a number that is exponentially closer to one than 0.9 is close to 1.  Should have said ^-100?

Anyway, the broad point is that some probabilities are so close to certain as to make the alternative absurd in an astronomical way.

 

 

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

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 Quote:Actually it's not.

 

Quote:
Actually it's not. This is the logical equivalent of

 

1. All women are humans

2. Bob is a human

3. Therefore, Bob is a woman

(1) sould be "all felines are cats. " or it should be

2. Tom is a cat

3. Therefore Tom is a feline.

Crike.  I'm never hitting "post" without a proof read again.  Yes, I did have the two terms switched.  My proof should have read:

1. All cats are felines.

2. Tom is a cat.

3. Therefore, Tom is a feline.

 

 

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

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Luminon, you appear to me to

Luminon, you appear to me to be at least, if not more, stuck in several preconceptions which you appear unwilling or unable to revise, despite all sorts of arguments and examples presented to you, than any of those who disagree with you.

Among these are an inaccurate concept of what science actually is and can be applied to, how it is carried out and how it responds to new ideas. Now you display similar misunderstandings of atheism, associating a whole bunch of things with simple non-belief in God. This is totally indefensible for someone who participates in these forums, since this business about the 'definition' of Atheism has been thrashed out so many times.

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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Quote:However, this

Quote:
However, this worldview is betting on certainity a lot. (a polite way how to say that it's getting near a circular logic) It was proven that there is always more to discover, that the new knowledge never stops appearing, but increases the rate.

'It was proven', eh? When? By whom? Where did they publish their work?

Luminon, the major barriers in exploring our universe are it's scale and complexity. There is a lot of very unintuitive universe in front of us, and ergo, a lot of new discoveries yet to be made. 'A lot' does not mean 'an infinite amount of', however; if not for the human lifespan being so flickersome and our brains being so limited, it's quite conceivable that we could eventually learn everything there was to learn (the only way this becomes utterly impossible is if there is some entropy-defying system constantly churning-out new variables. Say, for instance, if it's the case that most supermassive black holes wind-up spawning a new universe, and then it's own black holes spawn one after that, etc ad infinitum.

Quote:
Unfortunately, it seems that the longer the atheism is being held, the more diffcult it is to revise it, if the need arises. It would be nice to see the people actually change their opinion if they would see something substantial enough. The problem is, that the only substantial things are already within a scientific paradigm, and everything else is doubted and ignored - just for not being understood or repeatable. A banal rationale can be made up for anything, which may answer 'how', but not 'why'.

What. The. Fuck?

Luminon, seriously. Roll-up your sleeves, do your research, write your paper and submit it. That's all academia asks for. You don't need credentials, you don't need affluent sponsors, you don't need political clout; you just need a good head on your shoulders, the willingness to drop your biases and the ambition to get work done. There is no outright 'ignored' or 'doubted' phenomena, so quit the dishonest bitching, get out there and get your hands dirty already.

And you're right - if what you've outlined in your paper can't be reproduced by other researchers, your paper will be very rightly not survive the gauntlet of peer-review. If something can only be seen by, heard by or otherwise experienced by just yourself, it is not an applicable science!

Quote:
This is why my notion of atheism is a bit extended. It doesn't judge a belief, hypothesis, presumption, knowledge, of (g)God(s) or anything like that as it's subject. It considers if a person worships, fears, loves, hates, or appeases this presumed being(s). (more complete list is here) I believe that even if some god would be scientifically proven to be real, all of the local atheists would acknowledge his existence, but they wouldn't join the worshipping crowds, and so they would remain atheists by my definition.
Maybe this definition isn't even atheism, maybe there's already another name for it, did anyone ever hear about it?

Yes, Luminon. It's called 'Deism'.

So you're a deist. Congrats on your new identity.

Quote:
"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
February 27, 1940


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Quote:Should have said

Quote:

Should have said ^-100?

No, because that is 2.7. Ok, look, you need a crash course in basic exponentials so you don't humiliate yourself further. Any number between zero and one raised to the power of a number greater than one will made smaller. Any number raised to a negative number will give the inverse of whatever that number is when raised to the same number with the sign changed. In other words, if you raise x^-y, then you get 1/[x^y], and since a number between zero and one reciprocated is greater than one, if you raise a number between zero and one to a negative number, you will get a number greater than one. If you want to make 0.99 arbitrary close to 1 approaching the limit from that side, you should raise it to the power of [1x10^-n] as n tends to infinity, in other words, a positive number arbitrarily close to zero. This is unsuprising since a corollary of the first law of exponentials is that x^0=1.

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

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Let me first start off by

Let me first start off by saying that I'm very glad I decided to join this forum. I've really learned a great deal by reading everyone's reactions and opinions. I've read a couple of the essays as well, really good stuff.   Its funny, sometimes I kind of feel like the main character on  that show intervention. "Hi everyone, my name is Brad and I'm a theist." "HI BRAD!! hahaha (Brad is my real name) I just want to thank you guys for engaging my post with such intellectual responses. Atheist's seem to truly be THINKERS! This is something that tremendously lacks on the other end of the spectrum. Trust me, I'm surrounded by it everyday. I live in Texas. I also want to say that I think its really crucial to engage into these types of discussions. I really feel that the people who choose to not question what they hold as truth are doing more harm then good. This is something that all of you have probably done.  I'm pretty sure that at one time or another you might have been associated with some sort of religion or theist reasoning.  Just the action alone of trying to let yourself believe another way is huge in my opinion. It will either make your beliefs stronger or they will crumble.  I have so many family members and friends who believe in Christianity for no other reason then just to believe. Its like a trendy thing to do, or whatever. I guess the feeling of being ostracize for thinking different is to much handle. Your guess is as good as mine. I've struggled when it comes to engaging Christians in debate. Some of you might call my thinking naive, how about the belief that their is only one right way to believe. All opposed go to hell. Talk about a bullshit story. Anyway maybe i shouldn't be that harsh, i guess whatever floats your boat. Going back to what I was saying earlier, I really think the big problem with people is that they choose to not question as much. I say question everything no matter right,wrong, up, down or whatever. Their are multiple ways to solve a problem why choose just one?


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 Quote:If you want to make

 

Quote:
If you want to make 0.99 arbitrary close to 1 approaching the limit from that side, you should raise it to the power of [1x10^-n] as tends to infinity, in other words, a positive number arbitrarily close to zero.

Ok.  Thanks for the crash course.  I think I just proved the "Use it or lose it" platitude.

 

 

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

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Hi Brad,Could you please use

Hi Brad,

Could you please use paragraphs? More people will read what you have to say if it is not a block of text.


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From the looks of things

From the looks of things people have been reading my post's. Thank you for your kind words.


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deludedgod

deludedgod wrote:

Quote:

Should have said ^-100?

No, because that is 2.7.

Full crash course aside, didn't he just mean 0.9 (dot or macron over the 9)? Y'know, "nine repeated"? I haven't been able to find a way to write that in HTML.

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BobSpence1 wrote:Luminon,

BobSpence1 wrote:
Luminon, you appear to me to be at least, if not more, stuck in several preconceptions which you appear unwilling or unable to revise, despite all sorts of arguments and examples presented to you, than any of those who disagree with you.
Argument is a theory. If a physical experience of me or someone I know says otherwise, then it has for me a greater value, than an argument. How this dichotomy between reality and theory is possible?
There is an objective reality, the ultimate Truth, but we are unable to see it. Instead, we detect as much of this objective reality as we can, to create our subjective reality. Mostly, we detect the same part of objective reality, so our subjective realities are very similar, but not entirely. There is a small number of people who sees less, and who sees more. The greater deviation from the norm, the less of them there is. (as the graph of Gaussian distribution would depict )
Using a personal evidence in our lives is normal, we all do it, it's called learning. It's a greater influence than the standards of a society, because it's here and now. This is both it's power and weakness.

BobSpence1 wrote:
Among these are an inaccurate concept of what science actually is and can be applied to, how it is carried out and how it responds to new ideas. Now you display similar misunderstandings of atheism, associating a whole bunch of things with simple non-belief in God. This is totally indefensible for someone who participates in these forums, since this business about the 'definition' of Atheism has been thrashed out so many times.
As for the science, I'm influenced by how it works in this country, where it's far from the ideal. There's a saying, "in this country, everything is possible", in a negative sense. We've seen a lot of stupidity from the members of Czech Skeptics' Club. Judging from their articles, I don't see much difference between the Church and those who claims to have a patent on the rationality.
As for the atheism, does it sometimes get you angry, when Christians assume, that if you don't worship God, you must automatically worship Satan? Or if you're a science guy, that you actually worship the science, instead of God? Or that the science is 'playing with humans were never meant to know'? Why is it so diffcult for some of them to understand, that we  don't worship, don't climb up the anyone's holy or endegreed butt? 

Kevin R Brown wrote:
'It was proven', eh? When? By whom? Where did they publish their work?
Just a common sense. It was proven by everyone, who ever discovered something new, just after someone stated that 'everything what could be discovered, was already discovered'.

Kevin R Brown wrote:
And you're right - if what you've outlined in your paper can't be reproduced by other researchers, your paper will be very rightly not survive the gauntlet of peer-review. If something can only be seen by, heard by or otherwise experienced by just yourself, it is not an applicable science!
This is the problem. I would need an applicable science, I'd need to have the research done. This is a work for experts on decades. Rather than the one who can withstand the academic critical look, I can be a participant on the research, one of research objects.
It is good that there is more people who see, hear and feel what I do, but still, there is a big difference between a personal evidence (even for a multiple people, as in my case) and a truly objective, repeatable and measurable phenomenon. I can't describe what I perceive in scientific terms, because in the science of today, there are almost no such terms. Some can be found in the works from which the 'quantum mysticism' originates, and some in the non-mainstream science. There are no mainstream peers I'd need for a review. Literally and metaphorically said, there's no scientist who's ajna chakra is still excited after yesterday's meditation, unlike mine. There's a great schism instead. Also, the mainstream science is closely related to the politics and commerce, which are areas not welcoming for a certain changes, to say it mildly. These factors I think damages the objectivity of the scientific institution. The world is in all kinds of crises, and the science is not protected from them. Generally, I think these crises are justified and by solving them, there will be a great paradigm shift, which will correct this schism. (which will untie my hands a lot) You may hear about me during next 20 or 30 years.

Yes, the science told us a lot of about the world, but it told us very little about ourselves. The science develops a technologic aspect, neglecting the humanistic, and this combination is a danger to our kind. I am right in saying that there are great depths of meaning, neglected by what we call 'skepticism' and 'rationalism'. The critical thinking we have, is selective.
The ignorance hurts and kills, do you agree? So by that standard, we are very ignorant. Our world is ravaged and polluted by poisons. Our time is counted on minutes, evaluated and taxed. We are biologic machines who does what they are told, and there is no human rights chart found in our DNA. The science doesn't even consider it as a valid question.
Is this what science says, or rather allows to be said? Is there a mainstream scientific research of sustainable human society acceptable for all? Is there a research of a rational ideology uplifting the minds of people and encouraging them to be good? Where are the keys to human mind, resolving an ideologic conflicts? What are long-termed effects of poverty and conflict in a region on the whole world? Is there a genetic combination, which makes a genius, or a morally advanced person? We would need a lot of them. How can we prevent a phenomena like fanatism, extremism, crime, monopoly, conspiracies or corruption? How to estabilish an organized advancement of a society, in cultural and biological sense? How to give everyone a degree of independence, thus to make them resistant to misuse from a side of the system itself?
Yes, we know a details of sub-atomary particles, but we don't know how to prosper and evolve. You may wonder why there are irrational people and bogus science. I'm not surprised, we are so "rational" that it's killing us, and we desperately search for an alternative. I don't mean an opposite extreme, I mean an optimum, the opposite of any extreme. An extreme provokes an opposite extreme. If the scientific institution would be a happy land of justice and freedom, there would be no renegades and gossips of persecution of alternative scientists, everyone would simply understand and admit their mistake. This search for an alternative is a good sign of the last remains of sanity, just as a disease is a sign of body's immunity reaction against a virus. Don't underestimate the so-called irrationality. Learn from what it really means.

Kevin R Brown wrote:
Yes, Luminon. It's called 'Deism'.

So you're a deist. Congrats on your new identity.

The wikipedia article on Deism doesn't resemble me very much. I am convinced that the reality has multiple levels and some idea what is on them, and how to do my part in mutilevel reality cosmology, but I doubt that local Young Men Deist Association would know what I mean.
Btw, so all atheists would theoretically become deists, if an existence of God would be proven?

 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


iwbiek
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i just have to highjack the

i just have to highjack the thread for a sec here to say that, while i don't agree with the vast majority of the points he makes, i admire luminon for constantly taking a verbal pummeling yet, from what i've seen, always maintaining a graceful demeanor.

"I have never felt comfortable around people who talk about their feelings for Jesus, or any other deity for that matter, because they are usually none too bright. . . . Or maybe 'stupid' is a better way of saying it; but I have never seen much point in getting heavy with either stupid people or Jesus freaks, just as long as they don't bother me. In a world as weird and cruel as this one we have made for ourselves, I figure anybody who can find peace and personal happiness without ripping off somebody else deserves to be left alone. They will not inherit the earth, but then neither will I. . . . And I have learned to live, as it were, with the idea that I will never find peace and happiness, either. But as long as I know there's a pretty good chance I can get my hands on either one of them every once in a while, I do the best I can between high spots."
--Hunter S. Thompson


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Hambydammit

Hambydammit wrote:

 

Quote:
0.99 raised to the power of 100 is approximately 0.36.

I think you just meant "0.99".

Ergh.... this is what I get for just plopping something down in a rush.  I was trying to express a number that is exponentially closer to one than 0.9 is close to 1.  Should have said ^-100?

 

The expression you're looking for then is 0.999. . This probability converges so close to 1 that the difference is not even computable. Using current algebraic methods it is effectively equal to 1. ie:

c = 0.999.
10c = 9.999.
10c - c = 9.9999. - 0.999.
9c = 9
c = 1

 

EDIT: I was just thinking over the expression DG gave you compared to this one and which one actually says what you want it to say. The thing is that both expressions use infinity to indicate that we want to get arbitrarily close to the probability of finding a feline that is not a cat - but infinity would basically give us a hard never we could search forever and ever and ever and never find a feline that is not also a cat, so to admit that if we searched for ever and ever and ever we would eventually find a feline that is not a cat and other strange unexpected things with it, then our expression should avoid infinity by a bit, which you just can't do. 

I guess that there really isn't any precise way to express that probability in general terms.

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iwbiek wrote:i just have to

iwbiek wrote:

i just have to highjack the thread for a sec here to say that, while i don't agree with the vast majority of the points he makes, i admire luminon for constantly taking a verbal pummeling yet, from what i've seen, always maintaining a graceful demeanor.

You should hear my thoughts when that **** gave me the theist cattle brand. ** ****** with him, throwing all people he doesn't like into the same sack will hardly produce understanding. It seems to be the good old principle of "if you don't go with us, you go against us". A division in practice. Well then, Christians doesn't want me, atheists neither, what's the third side of the two? Someone should explain the atheists, that the world isn't just black or white.

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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Luminom what is your

Luminom what is your philosophy on life?


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discus70 wrote:Luminom what

discus70 wrote:

Luminom what is your philosophy on life?

I guess I had sent you a rather lengthty PM on this topic as you asked, but if you mean a simplier public summary, then let's try.
We are One. We are connected together by many ways we see and don't see, we have one origin, and the evolution leads to further integration, and organic unity. Furthermore, there is several of important laws, law of Action and result (Karma, basically), law of Attraction (resonance, basically), and the law of Sacrifice.
The law of Karma is extended in the law of Rebirth, thus it's impossible to escape a bad consequences of our actions by death. We must preserve the world well for our descendants, because we will be the descendants. It also means that we were the ancestors. We must care for the world, because all bad (and good) consequences of our actions are inescapable and we will reap them. As a personal evidence the law of Rebirth, I use a years of my mother's succesful practice in past life therapy.
The law of Attraction is quite abstract, and it means a need to be responsible for our every action, thought and emotion, because we might get more of it, whatever it is.
The law of Sacrifice is a basic way of development, one is also developing by sacrificing our lower properties in favor of the higher. For example, I sacrifice a few hours per week to do some meditation, instead of sitting in front of a computer, or someone else sacrifices his life, to save other people's lives. Plants and animals are just sacrificed whether they like it or not, but a human needs to reach such an awareness that he decides by himself that it's for his good to sacrifice something, in order to develop. Thus shortly, it must be voluntary, otherwise it's not a real self-sacrifice.


It make a beautiful future for the humanity, if it would be proven that these laws are objective. Until then, they are here for those who likes these ideas enough to try to behave according to them.

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


discus70
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I never recieved your

I never recieved your Pm...either i have no clue where to find it, which could be the case. Or I never got it.

 

could someone send me a Pm....like a test Pm to see if I'm recieving them


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Discus, I just sent you a

Discus, I just sent you a PM... If you look at the bar on the left side, there should be a little number 1 next to the words "My inbox."  You can change your settings to get an e-mail when someone sends you a PM by using the "My account" link in the top banner.