Debate Theism

rthomas2
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Debate Theism

Hi everyone;

I'm starting this thread with a pretty narrow purpose: I'm a theist, and I think that I can offer a good argument for theism, which can withstand criticism.  From what I can tell, the atheists on this forum are some of the best and most passionate critics of religion, so I'd like to challenge all comers to a debate.  (If there is a god, I may just have stepped onto a cliff during a thunderstorm...)

 

Before we start, I'd like to set some ground rules; if you think any of these are unfair, let me know.  They can certainly be revised.

 

1) No personal attacks/taunting/mockery.

I think that if we start criticizing each other, rather than our positions, the debate will soon disintegrate.  So, the limit to criticism is: if anyone thinks a person's position, manner of argument, etc., are despicable, you can politely say something like, "I think that's very ignorant to say, and here's why," or else, "You're disrespecting the rest of us by doing X."  You get the idea; any criticism must not extend beyond the specific views/arguments voiced in this thread, and must be something that can be rationally defended against by the accused.  By extension, any snide remarks or sarcasm are plain out; don't insinuate someone's position to be ridiculous, prove it so respectfully.

2) No out-of-hand dismissals

This is somewhat similar to the first rule, but deals with over-dismissiveness rather than outright attacks.  If another person posts a view you disagree with, either don't engage it, or do.  However, don't simply disagree without offering evidence which contradicts their claim.  This doesn't imply their claim is weak, it implies you can't counter it.  And presumably if it's so ridiculous you feel it could be ignored, you can easily counter it...so do.

3) Other Guidelines

I. Clarity First

The more clearly you state your arguments, the less time wasted by others in deciphering them, or possibly in engaging points other than the ones you're interested in arguing.  This isn't a school debate; we're going for truth, not the appearance of it.

II. Finish what you start

I'm probably the worst offender when it comes to abandoning arguments once interest wanes, so I know this is hard.  But please, let's all finish any arguments we agree to start, which means: progressing until each side has a fully valid, consistent argument, and any issues of soundness are no longer objectively arguable.  If someone has been convinced of their opponent's or opponents' arguments, it should mean that the validity of their previous argument has been disproven, not that they've simply been impressed by their opponent's rhetoric.  See guideline I.

 

That's it; let the debate begin!


rthomas2
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My Interpretation of Heb. 11:1

jcgadfly wrote:
 Tadgh wrote:

 

 

rthomas2 wrote:

 

... I'd prefer if you all begin by raising objections to faith and I bat them off...

 

 

Hold on, there... you said you had a "strong argument for theism." If that's true, then offer it.

You don't walk into someone else's dining room and start telling them what to eat and serve.

And you don't walk into someone else's playing field and try to set "rules." If you want to, start your own forum. Otherwise, piss off.

 

 

c'mon Tadgh. Let him bring up those counter-arguments that he's so sure we've never heard.

Heck, I'll start. Heb. 11:1 (KJV) says "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen". If it is the substance of hopes and evidence of the invisible how does it differ from faith being defined as "belief without evidence"?

Thanks for the support, although I don't think I'm going to always bring up new counter-arguments; though I do hope they'll be better explained than usual.

My interpretation is that for faith to be the substance of hopes and the evidence of the invisible--my translation being, that which gives substance to hopes and provides proof of the invisible--it means that the very existence of faith in those things offers credence to them.  Now, for faith to offer credence, it must be of a certain nature.  Not simply any belief--for a person could believe himself a monkey, and that would offer proof to no one that he was indeed a monkey.  Instead, it must be a kind of belief that when seen, gives credence to that which it proposes.  Thus it must be belief with evidence, for belief without evidence of some sort convinces no one.  And belief that is thought to be evidenced will only convince those who trust that supposed evidence.

For example, think of any person you've ever met who was convinced of something you were not.  If you asked them why, they would most certainly have given you a reason!  Whether that reason would have been valid or not, it would still have been a reason.

Do we agree here?


Ktulu
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rthomas2 wrote: So, that's

rthomas2 wrote:

 

So, that's my argument. To simplify,

1) The writers of the gospel condemned lies and liars.

2) Thus, said writers tell the truth.

3) Thus, the gospels are accurate.

4) Thus, Jesus said and did what the gospels say he said and did.

5a) The teachings and actions the gospels ascribe to Jesus are superhuman.

5b) The teachings the gospels ascribe to Jesus testify to his integrity.

6a) Thus, Jesus is divine.

6b) Thus, Jesus is trustworthy

7) Jesus asserts that there is a god.

8 ) Because Jesus is divine and trustworthy, his assertion that there is a god is credible.

9) God exists.

 

Is this comprehensive enough for our purposes?

Really? that's the argument?... *takes off blue suit and puts on stained sweat pants and t-shirt that reads 'honk if you're horny'

Most everyone had a go at refuting the FIRST premise of that argument.  So by your logic, nobody that condemns lies and liars can tell lies?  I fear for your financial stability, and also I have a very profitable business proposition for you.  Oh, and I condemn ALL lies and ALL liars, so you know I can't possibly be stating something that's untrue. Eye-wink 

That's the argument... *shakes head

 

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


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rthomas2 wrote:My meaning

rthomas2 wrote:

My meaning was that should knowledge of god be unavoidable, it would limit free will.  However, I agree that by no means would it cease to exist!  And your assertion that, according to my assertions, god rewards gullibility, I disagree with.  In fact, the whole perspective which you advocate, while reasonable to me, is still, I think, wrong.  Here's why.

If god were known to exist, many people would follow him sycophantically--that is, they would do his will not because it was right, but because he was the most powerful being around.  That's a view that some advocate, that is, we should follow god simply because he's omnipotent, because we could go to hell otherwise, etc.  However, if we were to follow god for this reason, we would not need to believe that the morality god voices is the best way to live.  By having to seek god out, however, we must devote ourselves to him solely based on what we know of him, and what we know of him is his morality.  What I'm trying to say is that as it stands now, people will or won't follow god based on whether or not they agree with his morality.

People already follow god because of the fear ingrained into them from their religious training/brainwashing/beliefs that god will condemn you to hell if you don't follow him, it just depends on the sect you follow, and some of the roman catholic church do follow out of that mere fear. Many have left the church for various reason, yet the fear of hell still lingers, and that's because you are taught.

Quote:

The issue that you've brought up, I think, is that god punishes those who don't kiss his ass and rewards those who do.  Not only that, he toys with us by not giving us any proof of whether or not he even exists.  This is what I believe certain people say about god, but not me.  I believe that heaven and hell are not places we are assigned to by god; rather, perfect people go to heaven and imperfect ones go to hell.  The only way to become perfect, having lived imperfectly, is to be given a second chance, and god is the one who's able and willing to do so.  Whereas it seems unfair that any being's whim is the only thing that matters in the afterlife, as far as I can tell from the morality advanced in the bible, the "whim" of god is not favoritism based on ass-kissing, but a sort of "waste not" mentality.  For in becoming subservient to god, we pledge ourselves to doing his will, that is, follow his morality--by his standards, live as good people from then on.   If one isn't committed to this, what good would it do to extend a second chance?  One has not committed to using it well.  So, by having to seek out god, we must undergo the process of evaluating his morals, and deciding whether or not to commit to them.  This may seem like it screws over those who have no chance to seek god out, but then, the fact that they aren't seeking something higher than themselves is part of the reason they're not being reached out to.  It's not that believing flimsy evidence is rewarded; it's that deciding to seek god is important, and that if god exists, that step is pretty much disposed of.

Please criticize, I know there's something here I'm overlooking but I can't put my thumb on it.  Thanks!

 

Everything you said here is pretty much rubbish, and here is why, everyone not believing in YOUR GOD does not mean they are not seeking higher beings, which is why we have a HUGE amount of religious beliefs that come from far older religion (hinduism) and new ones, however it does not mean they are not looking for something higher than themselves, even better, depending which part of the bible you use, say the gospel of john, then those that have never heard of god or jesus will never enter heaven no matter what their good deeds are. Those that have heard of god and jesus but do not believe in jesus's divinity, believe in god and believe that jesus was the son of god will not enter heaven as well (John 3: 15 - 18, John 3:36, john 11:25-26, john 20:31). So in other words, if  you don't believe in jesus and god you don't get in no matter what you do. Then there are the contradictions in the john regarding judgement and those that will be judged (john 5:24 and john 5:28-29)

Even more so, this still is a play on free will from ignorance. Wanna see free will in play, have someone with full knowledge and let them make their own choice, then you get to see free will, what you state is basically, don't tell them and if they don't know that they are choosing, or which version to follow, condemn them for not making all the right choices.

Seeking god, which version of god, catholic? Protestant? Mormon? Jewish? islamic? Hindu? norse? Greek? Mayan? Which gods? there is no evidence that your god exists, actually the evidence is the same for all, none outside of myth, holy books/texts and stories passed down from generation to generation. None have concrete evidence for their god(s), wonder why that is? Could it be because it has all been created by man?


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rthomas2 wrote:  1) As I've

rthomas2 wrote:

 

1) As I've said, I'm sorry I didn't immediately offer my argument; you can find it in posts #18 and #47.

 

There is a specific forum for debating with rules, this is more or less an open forum, where there are no specific rules and no one has to follow any rules other than those posted by the administrator of this site, you should be able to request one with one of the admins if you like to get more specific rule oriented one.

As for your argument, I have to admit I agree with redneck you argument is very circular, and someone else has pretty much torn it apart with it's logic. 

I cannot tell a lie

I therefore can only tell the truth

I say there is no god

there is no god because I cannot lie.

That is the circular logic you are using, which is pretty much what you have stated is your argument regarding the authors of the NT, however you have NO way of knowing this at all. None, you have not even bothered to present evidence that this is even true or that they have no other agenda.


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rthomas2 wrote:The issue

rthomas2 wrote:

The issue that you've brought up, I think, is that god punishes those who don't kiss his ass and rewards those who do.  Not only that, he toys with us by not giving us any proof of whether or not he even exists.  This is what I believe certain people say about god, but not me.  I believe that heaven and hell are not places we are assigned to by god; rather, perfect people go to heaven and imperfect ones go to hell.  The only way to become perfect, having lived imperfectly, is to be given a second chance, and god is the one who's able and willing to do so.

So god reincarnates you until you reach Nirvana? I think the Buddhist temple called, they want their belief back.

 

rthomas2 wrote:

 Whereas it seems unfair that any being's whim is the only thing that matters in the afterlife, as far as I can tell from the morality advanced in the bible, the "whim" of god is not favoritism based on ass-kissing, but a sort of "waste not" mentality.  For in becoming subservient to god, we pledge ourselves to doing his will, that is, follow his morality--by his standards, live as good people from then on.   If one isn't committed to this, what good would it do to extend a second chance?  One has not committed to using it well.

So to what degree does this subserversion(not a word) have to be present during life? Does Jeffery Dahmer get to go to heaven because he has converted and is seeking god? Let's assume that he is a model Catholic from then on, does he go to heaven because he decided to 'live as good people from then on'?  Conversely, if one led an exemplary life, but has never bothered to believe in god will that person then go to hell?  What if he converts 5 minutes from the time of death? if that's not enough time, then how long does he actually need? what percentage of time does one need to spend 'subservient to god' in order to go to heaven? 

rthomas2 wrote:

 So, by having to seek out god, we must undergo the process of evaluating his morals, and deciding whether or not to commit to them.  This may seem like it screws over those who have no chance to seek god out, but then, the fact that they aren't seeking something higher than themselves is part of the reason they're not being reached out to.  It's not that believing flimsy evidence is rewarded; it's that deciding to seek god is important, and that if god exists, that step is pretty much disposed of.

Please criticize, I know there's something here I'm overlooking but I can't put my thumb on it.  Thanks!

But I have sought god out and found the evidence lacking and the conclusions severely illogical.  Do I go to heaven because I've 'evaluated his morals'.  You have stated that you do not agree with certain tenets of the Catholic preaching.  I also don't agree with certain tenets of the Catholic preaching, and agree with some (i.e. thou shall not kill, thou shall not bear false witness, etc).  The number and types of tenets that we choose to obey are simply subjective and arbitrary.  In theory EVERYONE agrees with one tenet or other, so EVERYONE goes to heaven, because they have followed their version of god's morals.   

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


rthomas2
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My Retort

redneF wrote:
 rthomas2 wrote:

 

I actually really like your sense of humor

 

It didn't take you long to break your rules, did it?

I guess your rules only apply to others.

 

rthomas2 wrote:
  Before we start, I'd like to set some ground rules; if you think any of these are unfair, let me know.  They can certainly be revised.

 

 

1) No personal attacks/taunting/mockery.

I think that if we start criticizing each other, rather than our positions, the debate will soon disintegrate.  So, the limit to criticism is: if anyone thinks a person's position, manner of argument, etc., are despicable, you can politely say something like, "I think that's very ignorant to say, and here's why," or else, "You're disrespecting the rest of us by doing X."  You get the idea; any criticism must not extend beyond the specific views/arguments voiced in this thread, and must be something that can be rationally defended against by the accused.  By extension, any snide remarks or sarcasm are plain out; don't insinuate someone's position to be ridiculous, prove it so respectfully.

2) No out-of-hand dismissals

This is somewhat similar to the first rule, but deals with over-dismissiveness rather than outright attacks.  If another person posts a view you disagree with, either don't engage it, or do.  However, don't simply disagree without offering evidence which contradicts their claim.  This doesn't imply their claim is weak, it implies you can't counter it.  And presumably if it's so ridiculous you feel it could be ignored, you can easily counter it...so do.

 

Seeing as I never indicated I was joking, you've immediately offered both, a personal criticism of me, and an out of hand dismissal that my posts are a joke of some sort.

Your overview and 'rules' would indicate that you've already lost.

I win.

I disagree.  First off, whether or not it was intentional, your flippant tone suggested mirth; when I said I liked your sense of humor, I was referring to you oversimplifications of arguments to show their circularity, to with, your diagram.  Thus, I think it was reasonable to infer that you were joking.  Either way, the comment you've quoted where I compliment your sense of humor is in no way a dismissal, but rather an indication that I thought you were mocking theism.  I do dismiss your post later, because for reasons I detailed it appeared to be an out of hand dismissal of theism.  And by the way--the rules I've suggested are not to gauge winning and losing; I don't consider this a game: it's not that unimportant to me.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
 ..you've asserted over and over that theists are wrong

 

Please quote the numerous times I've asserted they were wrong...

My apologies.  "Wrong" is not the correct word; insane is.  Here are the times you've called theists insane:

redneF wrote:
 Theism is insanity.

Theism is a psychosis.

There is no rational discussion with circular reasoning (their scriptures) being substituted as logic and evidence.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
...and insane, but offered insufficient proof for such a claim.  

 

The dictionary definitions are the absolutely correct definitions for the usage of the terms we use.

The terms I used are completely compatible with theists.

I do not argue that you've provided correct definitions.  I do assert that you have not yet offered evidence for the applicability of those terms to theists.  Including in the immediately above quote.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
To prove that all theists are insane, that all theism is insane, you'd have to know every form of theism, and provide a reason why each one is insane. 

 

Incorrect. 

I only have to prove the compatibility that the category of theism is an insanity. Theism does that itself.

That's a compelling assertion...but how?  You have so far offered no evidence.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
To provide an argument which proves that any central tenant of any and all theism is insane would certainly suffice, but I can prove that you haven't done so:

 

By equivocating terms, and denial, only.

Not by fact.

 

rthomas2 wrote:
1) You've asserted that all theists base at least part of their reasoning on the circular argument depicted in your illustration, but I myself don't;

 

You'll not base any of your reasoning on the bible? Or it's veracity?

Your claim is in complete contradiction with your actions.

 

rthomas2 wrote:
  I do not believe the bible is infallible, though I do believe it's very, very trustworthy. 

 

This contradicts your claim that you don't base your reasoning using the bible in a circular reasoning. 

 

rthomas2 wrote:
 I believe it's the word of god because I believe its morals to be above those that humans would imagine..

 

You believe what the bible says, because it says it.

More personal demonstrations of your circular reasoning using the bible.

Another epic fail...

Let's review.  1) I asserted that my reasoning as to why the bible was trustworthy was not circular, and that therefore, not all theists use circular reasoning.  2) You drew the inference from that statement that I would not refer to the bible at all in my reasoning, and then asserted that I had lied.  However, I had only claimed not to use circular reasoning.  Had I claimed I would not refer to the bible in my reasoning, you would be right in calling me a hypocrite; yet I did not make such a claim. 3) I then claimed that the bible was trustworthy (though not infallible.) 4) You reiterated your claim that I had already engaged in circular, self-contradictory reasoning.  However, I had not done so.  I had mentioned the bible, yes.  I had asserted its validity.  I had not used the bible itself in order to assert its own validity.  5) I asserted that the quality of the morality of the bible made it appear to me that said morality is from god.  6) You accused me of "believ[ing] what the bible says, because it says it." No, I don't, nor do I assert such.  By oversimplifying my words, you've lost their import.  I have asserted that I believe the bible is the word of god--that is, divinely inspired--not because of any claims within the bible that it is such, but rather, because its morality seems divine--that is, its message seems so.  To properly simplify, I believe the bible to be the word of god because of my evaluation of its quality.  I don't have a scale which registers "divine" or "human".  Rather, I have one which registers "good" and "bad."  This simply registers higher than anything else on the "good" scale.  Because it registers so far apart from anything else, I disbelieve in its human origin, and believe in its divine origin.  Comprende?

redneF wrote:

rthomas2 wrote:

 So right there, I've given a form of theism which isn't as you've described it.  

 

False.

I think I've given you enough explanation that you should reconsider that judgment.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
 Unless you genuinely believed all theism was so easily and simply categorizable and simplifiable, you seem not to have accorded me or any theist respect

 

The position of theism is based solely on it's own conjecture that it is true.

That doesn't qualify as veracity.

You haven't responded to my statement, except to create another assertion, itself valid but with nothing to prove its soundness, which insinuates a rebuttal without offering one.  

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
2) You've called theism "insanity" and "a psychosis", and given definitions of these things, but not provided me with any reason why they are such. 

 

 

If you're still trying to argue that you are indeed being respectful and mature, rather than disrespectful and juvenile, this is hurting your case.

redneF wrote:
 

 

rthomas2 wrote:
Or perhaps the idea that all theists substitute scripture for evidence is this reason.  

 

Cool.

The adage is true!

Even a blind squirrel gets a nut, once in a while...

As is that.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
However, it too is easily proven false

 

Being 'argued' is not the same as 'proving'.

You are using the term 'proven', incorrectly.

The Supreme Court does not agree with the bible.

Tell it to a Supreme Court judge.

You are guilty of equivocating.

 You're absolutely right that arguing and proving are two completely different things.  To me, disproving an assertion means offering evidence which is 1) not deniable and 2) inconsistent with said assertion.  My use of non-circular reasoning is an instance of non-circular reasoning by a theist.  Thus, the assertion that theists don't use any reasoning but circular reasoning is proven false.

redneF wrote:
 

rthomas2 wrote:
..perhaps even by the above paragraph.  Specific to this assertion, I would say that scripture does not substitute for evidence. 

 

One could use the same circular reasoning for the tales of Atlantis, as a basis for argument.

And one would be incorrect.

No, one could not.  My argument hinges on the specific content of the bible.  That unique content is not present in the tales of atlantis.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
 So please, either more caution, more respect, more maturity, or all three in the future

 

Get real, rookie.

 If you're implying that in reality, no one must exhibit caution, respect, or maturity, I disagree.  If you're refusing to exhibit them, I disapprove.  And I will ignore flippant or dismissive posts by you in the future.  You've had what we in the majors call "two strikes": your first overly flippant post and your very flippant retort.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
...so long as you want to debate me.  

 

Narcissistic aren't we?

I'm not debating you.

You are not doing anything new. You are parroting the same hackneyed defenses of apologetics, that were already worn out before you were born.

I was and am under the impression that you are engaging ideas I am presenting.  That whether or not they originate with me, you are engaging my presentation of them.  And that you are also including in your responses personal attacks against me, because I hold views which you think are irrational--though you have given much less evidence for your assertions than they require in order to be convincingly argued.  As for narcissism, I'm probably a very narcissistic person.  But not in thinking that you're debating with me when you debate with my presentations of ideas, and hopefully not for anything in this thread.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
There's no penalty for rudeness, but I will be more and more inclined to ignore you.  

 

Ouch.

 Whether or not you're being sarcastic, I'm not attempting to say this as an attack.  I'm simply trying to give ample reason for ignoring someone, rather than simply doing so.  If you think that effort is contemptible, I'll abandon it in your case.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
Still, in this case, though your presentation was not the best

 

Don't put the onus on me, for your lack of comprehension of succinctness with your ad hominems, you hypocrite.

I comprehended your succinct post perfectly well.  And I can certainly imagine instances of proof for your argument.  But the onus is on you to support any claims you make; that goes for everyone.  If you don't honor that principle, you're mudslinging, not arguing.

redneF wrote:

 

rthomas2 wrote:
you did at least raise the ideas that theists argue circularly concerning scripture, which I hope I've debunked in at the very least my own case.

 

 

 

All you have is hope...

You are no logician, or objectivist.

 

You're no challenge, whatsoever.

 I'm not sure why you think I care about being a "challenge."  I care about finding truth.  In fact, if I am challenging, it might make it more difficult to ever know if I'm right or wrong.  But in response to your strong implication that I have failed to debunk your proposition, I leave the above portions of this post.  And by the way: I am an not an objectivist, mostly because I am not an atheist.  But I do hold to most tenants of objectivism, for the record.  One of which is that logic is the tool by which man can come to knowledge.  Logic requires evidence.  You have supplied no evidence, or so little that I've already forgotten it in the time it took to answer this post.  I thus find it hypocritical for you to attempt to insult me by claiming that I am not logical or an objectivist. Please respond with more respect and evidence in the future.

 

 

 


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rthomas2 wrote:My meaning

rthomas2 wrote:

My meaning was that should knowledge of god be unavoidable, it would limit free will.  However, I agree that by no means would it cease to exist!

The only thing it limits is the number of rational choises. It does nothing to prevent you from choosing an irrational one.

 

Quote:
And your assertion that, according to my assertions, god rewards gullibility, I disagree with.

You claim yourself we can't (not don't, CAN'T) know christianity is true because that would mess with free will. Accepting unproven and unprovable shit is gullible, whether you agree with that or not. We know it's unprovable in your theology because if god is real and he doesn't want to reveal himself, then he is obviously going to make sure he remains unknown to us since he can do anything. Therefore, anyone who accepts god's existence MUST be doing it without sufficient evidence. This alone is enough to reject your claims.

Quote:
If god were known to exist, many people would follow him sycophantically--that is, they would do his will not because it was right, but because he was the most powerful being around. That's a view that some advocate, that is, we should follow god simply because he's omnipotent, because we could go to hell otherwise, etc.  However, if we were to follow god for this reason, we would not need to believe that the morality god voices is the best way to live.  By having to seek god out, however, we must devote ourselves to him solely based on what we know of him, and what we know of him is his morality.  What I'm trying to say is that as it stands now, people will or won't follow god based on whether or not they agree with his morality.

Ok, so let's say the morality of the bible is awesome. Why would I not just adopt that part of the bible and skip the whole glorifying god thing since, according to you, I can't know he exists anyway? Why does god demand I kiss his ass in addition to following his moral laws?

Quote:
I believe that heaven and hell are not places we are assigned to by god; rather, perfect people go to heaven and imperfect ones go to hell.  The only way to become perfect, having lived imperfectly, is to be given a second chance, and god is the one who's able and willing to do so.
 

Just not willing if you didn't arbitrarily pick the right religion, a choise god gave you no assistance in by your own admission.

Quote:
Whereas it seems unfair that any being's whim is the only thing that matters in the afterlife, as far as I can tell from the morality advanced in the bible, the "whim" of god is not favoritism based on ass-kissing, but a sort of "waste not" mentality.  For in becoming subservient to god, we pledge ourselves to doing his will, that is, follow his morality--by his standards, live as good people from then on.   If one isn't committed to this, what good would it do to extend a second chance? One has not committed to using it well.  So, by having to seek out god, we must undergo the process of evaluating his morals, and deciding whether or not to commit to them.
 

Again, you can do this without kissing his ass, so why does god demand that too?

Quote:
This may seem like it screws over those who have no chance to seek god out, but then, the fact that they aren't seeking something higher than themselves is part of the reason they're not being reached out to.  It's not that believing flimsy evidence is rewarded; it's that deciding to seek god is important, and that if god exists, that step is pretty much disposed of.

So it's not about morality after all, it's about seeking god (and guessing the right one)? So god just wants to be glorified, he doesn't actually care whether you follow his laws or not since christians can apparently break every law they want as long as they repent, what he really NEEDS you to do is kiss his ass.

If god actually cares about his rules and not just whether we kiss his ass or not, why did he reveal the existence of hell to us? He's not against keeping information from us as evidenced by his own game of hide and seek, so why doesn't he keep hell a secret since that would make it a free choise for us to follow his rules or not without anyone feeling the need to worship him purely out of fear? Wouldn't that be a better system if the rules actually matter? What did god gain by revealing hell other than the kind of sycophantic following he doesn't want according to you?


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My Admission

Gauche wrote:
 By the OP's own admission he cannot have a strong argument or evidence. If he did god's existence would be obvious making knowledge of it unavoidable.

 Of course even if its existence were apparent we could still think that the actions, ideas, and doctrines of this thing were completely vile, abhorrent, and counter to human interests in almost all ways imaginable and refuse to accept such an authority, which would be a difficult choice unlike disbelieving things that aren't obvious and can't be.

 

I admit that there is no physical evidence of god's existence, at least not definitively.  I do not admit that there is no evidence.  Rather, I say that the evidence which exists hinges on testimony and anecdote of events.  This is an oversimplification, but it should clear up the difference between my form of argument and, as I understand them, many others.

And yes, I agree entirely on your second paragraph, except perhaps for the "aren't obvious and can't be." I'll leave off talking about that because the only issue I have would be semantical.  But yes, we could still reject god if he were around.  Supposedly Satan did.  Whether we should is another matter.


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My Request

 

BobSpence1 wrote:
 The bible is not the word of a moral God  because its morals are inferior to what we hold now - we do not allow people to be owned as property, ie slaves. Slavery is ok with God, according to the Bible.

It is very strange in its attitude to rape. God actually appears to ok it, specifically allowing all the young women of a conquered people, who are not betrothed, to be 'given' to the soldiers. It is certainly not unconditionally condemned.

And the fundamental message of the Garden of Eden is bad.

Disobeying an Authority figure is not inherently wrong, otherwise we would have let Hitler's deputies off when they could show they were "just following orders".

It is also wrong to punish someone's descendants for the crime the ancestor committed.

It is also wrong to punish someone for their thoughts, as in the Commandment about not 'covetting' your neighbours wife , or servants, or ass, etc. Thought Crime was a big theme in Orwell's "1984", and is associated with Totalitarian regimes.

That same commandment is also bad because it treats wives and servants as property.

It also seems ok with torture.

There are many other examples, but to me, these are the big ones.

Please don't take this as flattery, but I think those are excellent, excellent points.  Would you point out specific passages which show these things, and I'll respond?  If not, I'll do the quote-hunting, but it sounds like you have passages in mind.

 


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 Brian37 wrote: Quote:1)

 

Brian37 wrote:
 Quote:
1) No personal attacks/taunting/mockery.

 

If you owned this website, you would be within your rights to determine how people respond to you. Since you don't all you can do is request. Now that you have, the answer is NO. We respond to claims, unfortunately some equate their claims to being equal to them, the person themselves, and the two are NOT THE SAME.

If you want a "library" type debate there is a "Kill em with kindness" section.

I only owe my fellow human the right to claim what they want. I do not owe the claim, or the person, automatic respect just because I agree with a basic human right.

I can respect your right, for example, to claim that Allah or Vishnu or Thor exist, without wanting to literally kill you. But I don't owe the claim itself respect, just because I might think you are a nice guy. The logic behind the claim and the evidence to back it up is the issue, not the fact that someone I might like holds a position I find to be absurd. If you can prove me wrong, name calling and blasphemy to your claim, can be combated and shut the skeptic up quite quickly with EVIDENCE.

I don't make demands at websites I don't own. I also don't complain about being banned on sites I don't own. Instead of demanding we don't pick on your god, spend more time providing evidence for your claimed god.  What is more important to you? Protecting an old myth, or learning that the earth is a globe and not flat?

The truth is not an agenda or something to be afraid of scrutiny or blasphemy. The truth is found through the ability to admit when one is wrong. That is why our species no longer lives in caves.

I think I've responded already to a similar post, but yes, all I can do is request.  And by the by, I don't personally think that claims deserve respect...I do however think that evidence does.  And if you think I'm asking that you not "pick on my god", I'm sorry if I gave that impression.  Please, pick on him all you want.  But I'd really prefer you not do it in a debate.  I'd hope you'd debate in the manner outlined--and all I have any right to do is hope.  But as far as ridiculing mine or anyone else's positions rather than addressing evidence, and as far as offering assertions without evidence, I'd think those things don't belong in a true debate.

Again, if I've given any impression I'm looking for people to go easy on my positions, let me dispel that right now.  Go as tough on them as you can!  But I don't think mud-slinging is going tough.  I think offering contradictory evidence is going tough.

 


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My Syntax

 

Ktulu wrote:

redneF wrote:

 

The whole drama, buildup, and cliffhanger of the OP, is an appeal to emotions.

There is no method of proving that one's 'notion', or 'intuition' is true, simply based on those things, or on mere conjecture and speculations that have no physical evidence, and cannot make any testable predictions.

That's the reality.

 

 

I'm with redneF on this one.  I had my mama take out my good blue suit so I can get ready for church, thinking this guy will have me converted by Sunday.  Now I'm sitting here in my blue suit feeling ripped off... 

Perhaps I'm getting lost in the intricate paragraph syntax.  Or the way rthomas2 so eloquently states his facts with his extensive vocabulary.   I've yet to be blown away.  Still hanging in there though, in my good blue suit...

 

"Mr. Madison, what you have just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul."

My deepest apologies if I'm too wordy or poorly form paragraphs.  And I really think I'm arguing evidence, not just emotional appeal.  But as for having you convinced by this weekend?  I highly doubt it.  Even if I was actually god, I think having my id's verified would take 'til march at least. Smiling


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My Justifications

 

BobSpence1 wrote:
 The problem is that the justifications for belief presented here amount to very subjective judgments, intuitions, etc, rather than reference to any actual evidence.

Such internal feelings, no matter how strong and compelling to the individual, have long been shown to be extremely poor guides to what is actually true.

To trust such feelings as proof of the existence of something so totally outside any established science as a God is really a stretch way too far.

Even if all the miracles and visions in the Bible were reported exactly as experienced, all it 'proves' is that something strange was going on. Even if we discount hallucinations, it still only suggests something unusual occurred. Nothing is pointing to the existence of a God, let alone one with exactly the attributes assumed by believers, as the only possible explanation.

Visiting aliens would work better, since that doesn't require supernatural assumptions, or violation of known science. And many people today do believe in aliens, ancient and modern, as explanations for many things. I don't think aliens are the most likely explanation for what was written, just much more plausible than 'God'.

First off, I may not be mentioning a great deal of evidence yet, but that will come as we discuss specific cases.  But I would think I've made it clear that I too do not agree with subjective judgments or intuition-based evaluation of truth.

Second: if he miracles and visions in the bible are correct, what proves it to be the work of god is the testimony of Jesus.  Time and again, after a miracle has happened, he asserts that the miracle was god's doing.  Now, what is more plausible--that he's lying, that he's making an assertion without proof (which turns out to be wrong), or that he's telling the truth?  To me it's the last.  If I can call the gospel writers as character witnesses: Jesus continuously claims knowledge of the divine.  Could he or any person bring themselves to make such claims so easily and so constantly, without knowing what they were talking about?

The most subjective I'll get is to say that looking at human nature itself, call it psychology if you like, one sees certain patterns that never seem to be broken.  There are behaviors by which we can pretty certainly know whether a person is truthful, deceitful, knowledgeable, bullshitting, etc.  And to my best understanding, those signs that Jesus and the gospel writers exhibit are those of honest people who know what they're talking about.

 


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Cutoff, 02-05-2011

Anything beyond this point, I won't be able to respond to today.

 


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rthomas2 wrote: Brian37

rthomas2 wrote:

 

Brian37 wrote:
 Quote:
1) No personal attacks/taunting/mockery.

 

If you owned this website, you would be within your rights to determine how people respond to you. Since you don't all you can do is request. Now that you have, the answer is NO. We respond to claims, unfortunately some equate their claims to being equal to them, the person themselves, and the two are NOT THE SAME.

If you want a "library" type debate there is a "Kill em with kindness" section.

I only owe my fellow human the right to claim what they want. I do not owe the claim, or the person, automatic respect just because I agree with a basic human right.

I can respect your right, for example, to claim that Allah or Vishnu or Thor exist, without wanting to literally kill you. But I don't owe the claim itself respect, just because I might think you are a nice guy. The logic behind the claim and the evidence to back it up is the issue, not the fact that someone I might like holds a position I find to be absurd. If you can prove me wrong, name calling and blasphemy to your claim, can be combated and shut the skeptic up quite quickly with EVIDENCE.

I don't make demands at websites I don't own. I also don't complain about being banned on sites I don't own. Instead of demanding we don't pick on your god, spend more time providing evidence for your claimed god.  What is more important to you? Protecting an old myth, or learning that the earth is a globe and not flat?

The truth is not an agenda or something to be afraid of scrutiny or blasphemy. The truth is found through the ability to admit when one is wrong. That is why our species no longer lives in caves.

I think I've responded already to a similar post, but yes, all I can do is request.  And by the by, I don't personally think that claims deserve respect...I do however think that evidence does.  And if you think I'm asking that you not "pick on my god", I'm sorry if I gave that impression.  Please, pick on him all you want.  But I'd really prefer you not do it in a debate.  I'd hope you'd debate in the manner outlined--and all I have any right to do is hope.  But as far as ridiculing mine or anyone else's positions rather than addressing evidence, and as far as offering assertions without evidence, I'd think those things don't belong in a true debate.

Again, if I've given any impression I'm looking for people to go easy on my positions, let me dispel that right now.  Go as tough on them as you can!  But I don't think mud-slinging is going tough.  I think offering contradictory evidence is going tough.

 

"Ridicule is the only weapon that can be used against unintelligible propositions" Thomas Jefferson.

Here is the difference between you and Jefferson.

You, "mudslinging isn't tough"

Jefferson, "Bring it on, my position can withstand ridicule"

Jefferson was NOT an atheist, but unlike you if I debated him he would not be concerned with words like "bullshit" or "your god is a prick", he would be more concerned with WHY!

That is the difference between protecting one's ego, which is what you are trying to mask by pretending it is about civility, and Jefferson's much more ridged standard of having a claim have the shit kicked out of it.

If a claim, ANY CLAIM ON ANY ISSUE, can withstand having the shit kicked out of it and it becomes universally accepted, then you have something. The rest is merely protecting one's ego.

What you can do, if you want to falsely accuse people of being "childish", you can. I would suggest rather than complain "be the bigger man". If you want to assume we are taking the "low road'. You would be right if there were no option of a library, which is offered in this site in "Kill em with kindness".

What wont happen here, is when you by your own choice, step into the boxing ring, and then complain about being punched. No one here wants to eat your babies or rape your women. But you cannot assume the same standard for others when it isn't even your website.

We do want you here, but I'd advise you to grow a thick skin and treat us all as individuals and if you want a more quite setting "kill em with kindness" is an option for you. I am perfectly capable of liking people who make absurd claims. I can like the person without liking every claim they make ON ANY ISSUE, not just religion.

As far as me personally I like the boxing ring and the "mud" is like water off a duck's back to me, but that is an individual choice.

I find ALL CLAIMS of the super natural, with labels like God/deity/spirit/ghost......ect ect ect ABSURD and bullshit. If you don't, I won't hate you for that, but I will despise any person who has the attitude that their claim deserves a pedestal just because I agree with their right to claim it.

Taboos have always been a cluster fuck to humanity. If you can accept that it is horrible to force women to submit to men and wear tents, then why wouldn't it be pragmatic to blaspheme and ridicule such a horrible social norm?

Don't let your fear of hearing things that might offend you to lead you to a false perception that we are out ot oppress you or cant be your friend merely because we might find your claim ON THIS ISSUE, absurd.

Let go of your stereotypes and lose your fear of our words. I promise you everyone here would not leave you bleeding on the street from a car accident or set out to stab you to death because you hold a belief we find to be absurd.

We only ask that you be brave in not asking us to sugar coat our position. The worst that may happen even if you don't change your mind, is that you will understand, at a minimum, that we are just as human as you and we are just as much individuals and diverse as any other label.

What you wont get is any sympathy for a choice you made in coming here. AGAIN, if you want a more quite setting, that has been set up for you. But do not project your individual choices on others. I don't like it when you do it, and I don't like it even when atheists do it.

It is your choice. But it is not your right to tell others how to run their own household.

 

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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BobSpence
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rthomas2 wrote: BobSpence1

rthomas2 wrote:

 

BobSpence1 wrote:
 The bible is not the word of a moral God  because its morals are inferior to what we hold now - we do not allow people to be owned as property, ie slaves. Slavery is ok with God, according to the Bible.

It is very strange in its attitude to rape. God actually appears to ok it, specifically allowing all the young women of a conquered people, who are not betrothed, to be 'given' to the soldiers. It is certainly not unconditionally condemned.

And the fundamental message of the Garden of Eden is bad.

Disobeying an Authority figure is not inherently wrong, otherwise we would have let Hitler's deputies off when they could show they were "just following orders".

It is also wrong to punish someone's descendants for the crime the ancestor committed.

It is also wrong to punish someone for their thoughts, as in the Commandment about not 'covetting' your neighbours wife , or servants, or ass, etc. Thought Crime was a big theme in Orwell's "1984", and is associated with Totalitarian regimes.

That same commandment is also bad because it treats wives and servants as property.

It also seems ok with torture.

There are many other examples, but to me, these are the big ones.

Please don't take this as flattery, but I think those are excellent, excellent points.  Would you point out specific passages which show these things, and I'll respond?  If not, I'll do the quote-hunting, but it sounds like you have passages in mind. 

About slavery:

Quote:

Leviticus
25:44
Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids.

25:45
Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession.

25:46
And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession; they shall be your bondmen for ever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour.


Exodus
21:20-21
And if a man smite his servant, or his maid, with a rod, and he die under his hand; he shall be surely punished. Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not be punished: for he is his money.

The Leviticus quote makes it undeniable that the slave is considered property, not a bonded servant or some such, as is often claimed by apologeticists.

The Exodus quote speaks further about the way salves could be treated, and also adds to the torture evidence.

Quote:

Proverbs 20:30
The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly.

This tells us just how the Bible considers beating with rods or sticks is a regular and acceptable, even beneficial, part of life.

But of course, the ultimate ok to torture is the concept of Hell itself.

The bit about Authority simply applies to the whole narrative of the garden of Eden, as does the concept of 'original sin' and God's reaction to the 'sin' of disobedience in condemning the descendants. I hope you are familiar with that story.

About rape, and treatment of women:

Quote:

Deuteronomy
22:28-29
If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.

Numbers
31:15-18
And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? ... Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

In the first quote, the man does have to make a payment, but is not really punished, it is more a matter of having stolen some property of the father, and then having to keep her as his property. No regard to the women's wishes whatsoever.

In the second one, it further reinforces that women are things to be owned by men, to do with as they like, as long as they have 'legally' acquired them by either an agreement with their father, probably involving payment, or as a trophy from a military victory.

So the Bible does not really recognize rape as a sin, the willingness of the woman to accept the act is hardly considered. Other references to a man possibly forcing himself on a women seem to mostly involve a women who is betrothed, which is because that makes it effectively adultery, a different context, but still basically a 'property' crime, not an offense against the women.

The New Testament doesn't repeat all those pronouncements, but Jesus is supposed to have said

Quote:

Matthew
5:17
Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

5:18
For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

Which suggests he is ok with everything in the Old Testament.

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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rthomas2 wrote:I disagree. 

rthomas2 wrote:

I disagree.  First off, whether or not it was intentional, your flippant tone suggested mirth


 

What were some of your first rules? "I think that if we start criticizing each other, rather than our positions, the debate will soon disintegrate."
 "any criticism must not extend beyond the specific views/arguments

So now here you are criticizing 'me', and 'extending beyond the specific views/arguments, instead of the idea I put forth.

My 'delivery' is not up for debate.

My 'ideas' are.

Grow up, and learn to distinguish between the two, and stop lecturing people when you are going to be a hypocrite.

rthomas2 wrote:
  My apologies.  "Wrong" is not the correct word; insane is.  Here are the times you've called theists insane:

I'm not seeing where I've said "Theists are insane"

Please provide the proof of your allegation that I've 'called' theists insane.

rthomas2 wrote:
I do assert that you have not yet offered evidence for the applicability of those terms to theists.  Including in the immediately above quote.

I believe that I have.

You can attempt to falsify my claim, to my peers here, and if you succeed, then your argument was compelling.

Good luck....

rthomas2 wrote:
That's a compelling assertion...but how?  You have so far offered no evidence.

Very simply.
The much accepted definition of insanity is "Doing the same thing over and over, and expecting a different result every time"

Using the bible as proof of a god, based on the claim that it is the word of god, as a compelling argument is like arguing that a rabbit can pull himself up by the ears, over and over, and over again, and expecting that people should believe it based on a wild claim, and getting upset when people don't accept extraordinary claims in the abscence of extraordinary evidence.

Let's be honest.

The primary reason that religion is trying to prove the creationist argument, is for power.

Power over the people, by proxy, of the creator.

Evolution is a threat to the creationist claim, of a 'god' as a creator, which would completely undermine the bible, and render it a 'fairy tale'.

That's the 'prime motivation'.

 

I don't give a chit what people believe in Santa Claus, because it does not allow for them to lecture others how to live, and breach the secular human rights law that "Your rights end where mine begin".

rthomas2 wrote:
I asserted that my reasoning as to why the bible was trustworthy was not circular

And you were proven incorrect in your assertion.

Next....

rthomas2 wrote:
If you're still trying to argue that you are indeed being respectful and mature, rather than disrespectful and juvenile, this is hurting your case.

Where did you get the impression I was arguing that I was respectful and mature, in the first place, much less STILL trying to argue that?

Please provide the quote where I did that.

Good luck...

rthomas2 wrote:
You're absolutely right that arguing and proving are two completely different things.

TYVM.

I understand that I was correct in pointing out that you are simply arguing, and being misleading by using the term 'arguing' interchangeably with 'proving'

rthomas2 wrote:
I was and am under the impression that you are engaging ideas I am presenting.

I did.
But they are the same ones you were taught to use, so to claim they're your own, is dishonest.
rthomas2 wrote:
Whether or not you're being sarcastic, I'm not attempting to say this as an attack.

I never alleged the comment was an attack.

It was merely extreme hubris, and condescending.

I'd elaborate more on hubris and condescension, but I've got better things to do than waste my time with you, on the topic, boy.

rthomas2 wrote:
I comprehended your succinct post perfectly well.  And I can certainly imagine instances of proof for your argument.

But the onus is on you to support any claims you make; that goes for everyone. If you don't honor that principle, you're mudslinging, not arguing.


I Would be, but my assertions are supported by the definitions that are inherent in the categorizations I've place them in.

If you feel they are not insane, you're free to do so. I'm comfortable others will be able to extrapolate my meaning perfectly.
Call me lazy if you like, but 'mudslinging'? Nah.

I'd have to give a chit, first.

rthomas2 wrote:
  I'm not sure why you think I care about being a "challenge."

hmmmmm....
It was probably this that did it:


rthomas2 wrote:
Hi everyone;

I'm starting this thread with a pretty narrow purpose: I'm a theist, and I think that I can offer a good argument for theism, which can withstand criticism.  From what I can tell, the atheists on this forum are some of the best and most passionate critics of religion, so I'd like to challenge all comers to a debate.


Can you say, duuuuuuuhhhhhh????

 

You can claim victory all you want, here, on the internet. It means nothing, really. There's little at stake.

But, in the outside world, where battles are really won and lost, I have people like you for breakfast.

I get chosen over them, where it counts.

My theories get chosen over theirs, where it counts.

My innovations get chosen over theirs, where it counts.

My ideas get chosen over theirs, where it counts.

My influence get chosen over theirs, where it counts.

My leadership get chosen over theirs, where it counts.

My orders get chosen over theirs, where it counts.

Which is why I excel in knowledge, and achievements, and actually contribute tangible things to advance the modern world, instead of being a circular reasoning automaton, like yourself.

Which is why creationsists lost when they tried to pit themselves against the Theory Of Evolution, with their intellectually pathetic rebadging of the Christian dogma as "Intelligent Design".

That was a monumental step in basically demonstrating to theists, that your dogmas and 'beliefs' are irrational, and are no longer tolerable.

So are gay rights a big middle finger to theists.

And it's demonstrating that your efforts at admonishing, or abolishiong abortion, birth control, stem cell research, sodomy, premarital sex are irrational as well, and will not be condoned by the government, as we 'evolve'.

You need to realize that your 'rights' to practice your hate mongering masquerading as 'the divine word of the creator' are on the decline, as are your powers to do it openly, and in the classrooms of the world.

Education, and specifically 'science' will prevail over what theists misbrand as 'knowledge'.

You will become a subculture of cults, and known as 'freaks', much like Scientologists.

 

That was my prediction as I was learnin' my edumacation.

 

Looks like I have a knack for making predictions that are 100% compatible with my claims.

 

Good luck, with you delusions of being 'right', boy....

 

 

 

 

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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Others have already

Others have already addressed your earlier responses, so I will address your newest ones.

rthomas2 wrote:
I admit that there is no physical evidence of god's existence, at least not definitively.  I do not admit that there is no evidence.  Rather, I say that the evidence which exists hinges on testimony and anecdote of events.  This is an oversimplification, but it should clear up the difference between my form of argument and, as I understand them, many others.

Personal testimonies and anecdotes are unreliable. They are especially unreliable when it comes to supernatural events and phenomena. Add that to the fact that these testimonies are thousands of years old, are not always consistent with each other, and are not even justified to be first hand accounts.

If you want Bible passages, here are some more:

Bobspence1 wrote:
It is also wrong to punish someone's descendants for the crime the ancestor committed.

Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me. And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. Exodus 20:5-6

Sexism

Quote:
Say to the Israelites: "A woman who becomes pregnant and gives birth to a son will be cermonially unclean for seven days, just as she is unclean during her monthly period. On the eighth day the boy is to be circumcised. Then the woman must wait thirty-three days to be purified from her bleeding. She must not touch anything sacred or go to the sanctuary until the days of her purification are over. If she gives birth to a daughter, for two weeks the woman will be unclean, as during her period. Then she must wait sixty-six days to be purified from her bleeding." Leviticus 12:2-5

But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God. 1 Corinthians 11:3

Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church. 1 Corinthians 14:34-35

In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety. 1 Timothy 2:9-15

Stoning/Killing

Family members for following another religion -

Quote:
If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices you, saying, "Let us go and worship other gods" (gods that neither you nor your fathers have known, gods of the peoples around you, whether near or far, from one end of the land to the other), do not yield to him or listen to him. Show him no pity. Do not spare him or shield him. You must certainly put him to death. Your hand must be the first in putting him to death, and then the hands of all the people. Stone him to death, because he tried to turn you away from the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. Deuteronomy 13:6-10

Blasphemy -

Quote:
Anyone who blasphemes the name of the Lord must be put to death. The entire assembly must stone him. Leviticus 24:16

Homosexuality -

Quote:
If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads. Leviticus 20:13

Rapist and rape victim for not crying for help enough -

Quote:
If a damsel that is a virgin be betrothed unto an husband, and a man find her in the city, and lie with her; Then ye shall bring them both out unto the gate of that city, and ye shall stone them with stones that they die; the damsel, because she cried not, being in the city. Deuteronomy 22:23-24

Rebellious son -

Quote:
If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them: Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place; And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard. And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear. Deuteronomy 21:18-21

For Picking up sticks on Sunday -

Quote:
And while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man that gathered sticks upon the sabbath day. And they that found him gathering sticks brought him unto Moses and Aaron, and unto all the congregation. And they put him in ward, because it was not declared what should be done to him. And the LORD said unto Moses, The man shall be surely put to death: all the congregation shall stone him with stones without the camp. And all the congregation brought him without the camp, and stoned him with stones, and he died; as the LORD commanded Moses. Numbers 15:32-26

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


redneF
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I challenge our visitor to

I challenge our visitor to demonstrate how all of the above 'learnin's' would not classify anyone carrying out these atrocities, as insane and/or psychotic...

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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Thomas, multiple people have

Thomas, multiple people have pointed out that your argument (the gospel writers love truth, therefore they tell the truth, etc) on why you trust the gospels is circular, please address their criticisms. I'd also like you hear your response to how you think the morality in the numerous bible passages quoted above is superior to any human morality. 

 


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Hi Ryan

rthomas2 wrote:

 Hi!  Thank you for being the first to use my name; actually, it's Ryan Thomas, but I see what threw you off.  Sorry for that!  And btw, I look forward to the ordered chaos due to ensue!  Should be fun.  As I think ordered chaos always is!

To respond to your question: Perhaps it does, in fact I think it does indeed.  Because as I've defined faith, in post #16, every step of a definition would involve adding a layer of belief to one's previous definition.  So, yes, I would say so, that it is a matter of faith to ascribe characteristics to a god.  That he is the only one, that he is all-powerful, etc; any characteristics past the central one are belief.  I think the central one is, creator of the universe, but it might be creator of the world, or maybe onlooker instead of creator...but only one of those is central.  The rest of the characteristics we add on are beliefs about that object, and the very central piece itself, though not tantamount to a belief in the existence of said thing, is equivalent to a believe that said word describes said thing, that is, that god = {definition}.

I'm having some trouble being clear here; if you understand what I mean, could you rephrase what I've said, and then I'll confirm if that's what I meant?  Greatly appreciated!

 

Yes, I've had trouble with the idea that the whole being of god demanded faith, let alone an acceptance of the doctrine itself.

Do you believe in hell? If so how do you make this morally consistent? If the morals of the OT are perfect, why did jesus need to undertake his reformation of the jewish church in the NT? You'd agree jesus has moments of OT, especially in mark where he rages about the lake of fire?

Ryan, I've never really understood how a christian could base their god-belief on morality - the reification of a subjective and intrinsically self serving form of human behaviour. Morality always seems a poor reason to me. Humans are mostly very nice to their near and dear ones and oddly nice to strangers. We clearly evolved in very small groups and have carried this behaviour into urban life. 

I think the morality of the UN's Human Rights Charter written in 1948 beats the hell out of the bible. Why not read that - it's good. Finally, have you ever wondered why the first 6 commandments are aggrandisements - house ads for the lord - with no moral worth whatever? That's always bugged. 

 

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


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Well

 I don't know anything about theology, but what do you get when you... nevermind.

 


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rthomas2 wrote:jcgadfly

rthomas2 wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:
 Tadgh wrote:

 

 

rthomas2 wrote:

 

... I'd prefer if you all begin by raising objections to faith and I bat them off...

 

 

Hold on, there... you said you had a "strong argument for theism." If that's true, then offer it.

You don't walk into someone else's dining room and start telling them what to eat and serve.

And you don't walk into someone else's playing field and try to set "rules." If you want to, start your own forum. Otherwise, piss off.

 

 

c'mon Tadgh. Let him bring up those counter-arguments that he's so sure we've never heard.

Heck, I'll start. Heb. 11:1 (KJV) says "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen". If it is the substance of hopes and evidence of the invisible how does it differ from faith being defined as "belief without evidence"?

Thanks for the support, although I don't think I'm going to always bring up new counter-arguments; though I do hope they'll be better explained than usual.

My interpretation is that for faith to be the substance of hopes and the evidence of the invisible--my translation being, that which gives substance to hopes and provides proof of the invisible--it means that the very existence of faith in those things offers credence to them.  Now, for faith to offer credence, it must be of a certain nature.  Not simply any belief--for a person could believe himself a monkey, and that would offer proof to no one that he was indeed a monkey.  Instead, it must be a kind of belief that when seen, gives credence to that which it proposes.  Thus it must be belief with evidence, for belief without evidence of some sort convinces no one.  And belief that is thought to be evidenced will only convince those who trust that supposed evidence.

For example, think of any person you've ever met who was convinced of something you were not.  If you asked them why, they would most certainly have given you a reason!  Whether that reason would have been valid or not, it would still have been a reason.

Do we agree here?

A reason can be persuasive but it is not evidence. Are you basing your Christianity on "It seemed like a good idea at the time"? Smiling

Also, many theists interpret faith as not just a belief but how one can believe - "You can't believe in God unless you have faith in him". What's your view?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin