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Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
4th September 11, 09:24 AM
Richard Dawkins, outspoken atheist and critic of religion, may be losing his nerve. He has just refused four British invitations to publicly debate with eminent philosopher William Lane Craig when he visits the UK this October. The requests came from The British Humanist Association, The Cambridge Debating Union, the Oxford Christian Union and Premier Radio.

William Lane Craig is Research Professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology, California and is arguably the world’s foremost defender of historic Christianity. He has debated with many leading atheists and academics across the world, including Peter Atkins, Daniel Dennett, Anthony Flew, A.C. Grayling, Christopher Hitchens, Lewis Wolpert and most recently, Sam Harris.

Dawkin’s refusal to debate Craig has led Oxford University philosopher Dr Daniel Came to write to Dawkins urging him to reconsider, saying his refusal to do so is “apt to be interpreted as cowardice on your part.”

Craig, however, throws down the gauntlet, saying “I am keeping the opportunity open for him to change his mind and debate with me in the Sheldonian Theatre in Oxford at 7.30pm on 25th October.”


From BeThinking.com (http://www.bethinking.org/what-is-apologetics/dawkins-refuses-god-debate-with-william-lane-craig.htm)

Craig is going to do the Sheldonian gig with an empty chair open for Dawkins. If Dawkins doesnt show he's going to present his critique of the God Delusion anyway.

That letter from Dr Came.....


Dear Professor Dawkins,

I write as an atheist and in reference to your refusal to participate in a one-to-one debate with the philosopher William Lane Craig.

You dismiss Professor Craig as a ‘professional debater’ and state that you are not willing to debate anyone less senior than a bishop. Professor Craig has a PhD in philosophy and a PhD in theology. He is Research Professor in Philosophy at Talbot University. He has published more than thirty books and over a hundred papers in reputable peer-reviewed journals. Given your passionate and unconditional commitment to truth, I can only think that you were not aware of Professor Craig’s credentials when you made the above reference.

I understand that you have also commented that ‘a debate with Professor Craig might look good on his CV but it would not look good on mine’. On the contrary, the absence of a debate with the foremost apologist for Christian theism is a glaring omission on your CV and is of course apt to be interpreted as cowardice on your part. I notice that, by contrast, you are happy to discuss theological matters with television and radio presenters and other intellectual heavyweights like Pastor Ted Haggard of the National Association of Evangelicals and Pastor Keenan Roberts of the Colorado Hell House.

While I have your attention, may I also urge you to take another look at the ontological argument for the existence of God? On the basis of your brief discussion of the argument in The God Delusion, it appears you do not understand the logic of this argument. The ontological argument moves from the logical possibility of God’s existence to its actuality. Douglas Gasking’s parody of the argument, which you cite, moves from a logical impossibility to actuality and so is not parallel to the argument. In addition, you do not discuss the more sophisticated modal version of the argument advanced by the American philosopher of religion, Alvin Plantinga. Admittedly, you do say that some philosophers ‘resort to modal logic’ in an attempt to prove the existence of God. But this is a bit like saying ‘some botanists resort to looking at plants’ and so can hardly be said to constitute an objection to the argument.

Yours sincerely,

Dr. Daniel Came,
Lecturer in Philosophy, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Oxford



So Dawkins finally admitting he just hasnt got the intellectual metal to deal with somebody who isnt a dribbling idiot?

For those that dont know Doc Craig is one of the leading proponants of The Intelligent Desing School of evolution which makes it even wierder that Dawkins wont engage him IMO

Ajamil
4th September 11, 10:04 AM
So Dawkins' reasoning is that he doesn't want to date debate anyone "less than a bishop?" Also what's a CV? Is that some British resume?It does kinda sound like he's avoiding the guy, but I'd like to get an actual statement from Dawkins on that one.

Robot Jesus
4th September 11, 11:50 AM
yes, a CV is what they call a resume over there.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
4th September 11, 12:05 PM
......an actual statement from Dawkins on that one.


“I have no interest in this.” Richard Dawkins, 11th April 2011
This is the full text of his reply to the CEO of Premier Radio in declining an invitation to debate Craig before an audience of 2000 people in Westminster Central Hall.


I have no intention of assisting Craig in his relentless drive for self-promotion

That last one is pretty funny comming from Dawkins of all people.

Craigypooh
4th September 11, 12:21 PM
So Dawkins finally admitting he just hasnt got the intellectual metal to deal with somebody who isnt a dribbling idiot?

For those that dont know Doc Craig is one of the leading proponants of The Intelligent Desing School of evolution

Hold on, I thought you said he wasn't a dribbling idiot?

resolve
4th September 11, 12:47 PM
*shakes head and walks away*

Nothing to add here.

Cullion
4th September 11, 01:01 PM
yes, a CV is what they call a resume over there.

It stands for Curriculum Vitae

Cullion
4th September 11, 01:01 PM
Hold on, I thought you said he wasn't a dribbling idiot?

You wouldn't last long in debate with him on the subject. Don't kid yourself.

Craigypooh
4th September 11, 01:06 PM
You wouldn't last long in debate with him on the subject. Don't kid yourself.

Then he needs to use his considerable intellect for something more constructive than hunting for gaps where he can hide his God.

Cullion
4th September 11, 02:40 PM
why?

Craigypooh
4th September 11, 02:42 PM
Coz playing hide the god is a pointless waste of time.

SoulMechanic
4th September 11, 03:45 PM
This is what we call a bitchmove. When somebody puts your king in check, regardless of the status of the offending piece, are you not mated if you refuse to move? Dawkins chose to play the game, his lack of participation equates to the tipping of the king. Coward.

OZZ
4th September 11, 03:56 PM
I agree. ^^
In academic circles, his refusal to debate an opponent of high calibre will result in his credibility being severely dimished.


yes, a CV is what they call a resume over there.

Actually, the term is used here in North America too. Its just not one usually heard until a student decides to pursue Graduate Studies and starts applying to programs.

SoulMechanic
4th September 11, 04:53 PM
Coz playing hide the god is a pointless waste of time.
With your line of reasoning the same argument could be said of the receiving blow jobs.

danno
4th September 11, 07:05 PM
you're not the champ if you won't defend the title. but i think he'll come around eventually.

if he does decide to do it, i predict anderson silva to win by knockout in the second round.

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
4th September 11, 07:08 PM
I never saw the point of discussing the existence of a being whose own scripture describes him as unknowable unto Man and as existing on the outside of the universe.

HappyOldGuy
4th September 11, 07:13 PM
hunting for gaps where he can hide his God.

Hawt!

resolve
4th September 11, 08:13 PM
The thing I hate the most when discussing or researching creation, design, evolution, abiogenesis, fossil layers, geology, climate processes et cetera with people is the ridiculous amount of dripping snark-venom just hanging off of every statement... from both sides.

It makes it almost impossible to have a straight discussion or fact-finding talk with people... let alone a debate.

I remember debating this one guy on cometary mass and how it -could- show evidence for a younger solar system than was previously believed (there was no talk of time outside of decay rates, et cetera)... and then this other christian comes in to the forum and starts slamming the atheist kid. I actually had to ask the other christian guy to leave because he was being a major dick... I told him he was wrong for that and he goes "yeah, I'm sorry, that guy just has always gotten under my skin".

/Jesuswept
SO MUCH DRAMA

Why? Because worldviews are built upon the answers. Not just what you believe about origins, the rates of decay/fossilization, time eras, or what have you... but solid convictions about how you should behave and think as a human being.

bob
4th September 11, 10:37 PM
I hear he decided to debate Kirk Cameron instead.

nihilist
4th September 11, 11:37 PM
What exactly does Craig wish to debate?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
5th September 11, 03:46 AM
The existence of god silly

Craigypooh
5th September 11, 05:00 AM
With your line of reasoning the same argument could be said of the receiving blow jobs.

Are you saying he receives a blow job whenever he wins a debate. If so, I now understand and accept his motivation.

Ajamil
5th September 11, 08:23 AM
you're not the champ if you won't defend the title. but i think he'll come around eventually.

if he does decide to do it, i predict anderson silva to win by knockout in the second round.This sounds cool. I want debate cards set up. Are there managers for the debaters? A title belt?

What exactly does Craig wish to debate?He apparently favors a modal ontological argument for the existence of God.

nihilist
5th September 11, 08:56 AM
The existence of god silly Which God sir?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
5th September 11, 09:26 AM
Which God sir?

His.

Honestly Mole you're not event trying any more.

nihilist
5th September 11, 09:45 AM
His.

Honestly Mole you're not event trying any more. Well, that's true.
I didn't even bother celebrating my last birthday.


But seriously, Debating the existence The God Of Abraham is much different than debating a creator, wouldn't you say? the term 'god' is so general that it could be taken to mean almost anything.

The only thing that would be proven in a debate of god exists/god does not exist is the existence of close-mindedness.

Craigypooh
5th September 11, 10:22 AM
Given the arguments I've seen him use, it would be simply the existence of any god.

I don't think he will be presenting any archeological evidence for the existence of Noah, Moses or Jesus.

Dark Helmet
5th September 11, 10:30 AM
Well, that's true.
I didn't even bother celebrating my last birthday.

Is it 'cause you figured celebrating birthdays after 55 is juvenile?

nihilist
5th September 11, 10:31 AM
Given the arguments I've seen him use, it would be simply the existence of any god.

I don't think he will be presenting any archeological evidence for the existence of Noah, Moses or Jesus.

Then the debate will suck ass.

nihilist
5th September 11, 10:33 AM
Is it 'cause you figured celebrating birthdays after 55 is juvenile?

I just turned 50 you dadburned whippersnapper.

nihilist
5th September 11, 10:38 AM
50mm is less than two inches.

HappyOldGuy
5th September 11, 11:20 AM
Nob is mormon. He's congenitally tight assed.

nihilist
5th September 11, 11:22 AM
Nob is mormon. He's congenitally tight assed.

But according to his faith, eventually NoB will evolve into just as big an asshole as God.

nihilist
5th September 11, 11:28 AM
Aha! So you handled it no problem then?

Like most women, my wife would like nothing better than to make me into her bitch.

I'm not likely to join the NoB club anytime soon.

Cullion
5th September 11, 11:42 AM
I don't think he will be presenting any archeological evidence for the existence of Noah, Moses or Jesus.

Moses and Jesus probably existed, from a purely non-religious perspective.

HappyOldGuy
5th September 11, 12:08 PM
Dammit you fucks I am about as Mormon as the Pope.

I'm sure his holiness appreciates the invite into your temple sealed marriage, but you, the missus, and the greasy italian is already enough for eternity don't you think?

Craigypooh
5th September 11, 02:50 PM
Moses and Jesus probably existed, from a purely non-religious perspective.

You wouldn't say that if Virus was around.

HappyOldGuy
5th September 11, 03:10 PM
You wouldn't say that if Virus was around.

Why? I buried my fist so deeply in viruses ass over that subject I was tickling his epiglottis.

It's less defensible than intelligent design. And not too far removed from flat earth.

Ajamil
5th September 11, 03:45 PM
Why did you leave Noah out of that list?

Cullion
5th September 11, 03:58 PM
You wouldn't say that if Virus was around.

Because debating militant atheists who've never read any of the things they want to criticise is boring as hell? Yes. But thankfully he left.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
6th September 11, 06:14 AM
He apparently favors a modal ontological argument for the existence of God.

Just looked that up...


(1) If God exists then he has necessary existence.
(2) Either God has necessary existence, or he doesn‘t.
(3) If God doesn‘t have necessary existence, then he necessarily doesn‘t.
Therefore:
(4) Either God has necessary existence, or he necessarily doesn‘t.
(5) If God necessarily doesn‘t have necessary existence, then God necessarily doesn‘t exist.
Therefore:
(6) Either God has necessary existence, or he necessarily doesn‘t exist.
(7) It is not the case that God necessarily doesn‘t exist.
Therefore:
(8) God has necessary existence.
(9) If God has necessary existence, then God exists.
Therefore:
(10) God exists.

The first premise is based on the idea that God is perfect, and that something is better if it has necessary existence than if it has merely contingent existence.

The second premise of the argument is simply the law of the excluded middle.

The third premise, “Becker’s Postulate”, is a widely accepted principle of modal logic. All modal properties are generally accepted to be necessary.

Four follows straightforwardly from the second and third premises.

Five is entailed by premise one.

Six follows from four and five.

Seven is plausible at first glance, but is widely thought to be the greatest point of weakness in the argument.

Eight follows from six and seven.

Nine is self-evident.

Ten follows from eight and nine.


From The Modal Ontological Argument (http://www.philosophyofreligion.info/theistic-proofs/the-ontological-argument/the-modal-ontological-argument/)

This is nonsense isnt it?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
6th September 11, 06:15 AM
50mm is less than two inches.

I think he means width.

nihilist
6th September 11, 06:46 AM
Eight follows from six and seven.

Nine is self-evident.

Ten follows from eight and nine.

This is nonsense isnt it?

I think he means width.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
6th September 11, 07:02 AM
I think you're right. Its certainly a tight fit.

Cullion
6th September 11, 07:10 AM
Just looked that up...

From The Modal Ontological Argument (http://www.philosophyofreligion.info/theistic-proofs/the-ontological-argument/the-modal-ontological-argument/)

This is nonsense isnt it?

Yes, it is. Points i) and iii) are just assertions which the rest of the argument flows from.

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 07:34 AM
It's based on the premise that God is perfect. Therefore it is not a given that such a "perfect" God would not by necessity not exist. Arguments around problems with omnipotence and omniscience would be used to refute this argument.

There's a nice article on Wikipedia which discusses ontological arguments.

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

AAAAAA
6th September 11, 07:39 AM
This is old stuff. Can't they come up with something new? How many thousand years of thinking do they need yet?

Arhetton
6th September 11, 07:41 AM
"Euthyphro".

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 07:55 AM
This is William Lane Craig's version:


Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
The universe began to exist.
Therefore, the universe has a cause.
This cause is the God of Classical Theism, and is a personal being, because He chose to create the universe.
With two sub-sets of arguments.
The first sub-set of arguments:
Argument based on the impossibility of an actual infinite:
An actual infinite cannot exist.
An infinite temporal regress of events is an actual infinite.
Therefore, an infinite temporal regress of events cannot exist.
The second sub-set of arguments:
Argument based on the impossibility of the formation of an actual infinite by successive addition:
A collection formed by successive addition cannot be an actual infinite.
The temporal series of past events is a collection formed by successive addition.
Therefore, the temporal series of past events cannot be actually infinite.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
6th September 11, 08:01 AM
Wow that's shockingly weak. I was expecting more from him. Has he never heard of Georg Cantor (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georg_Cantor)?

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 08:06 AM
It doesn't shout "massive intellect that has the Atheist community on the run" to me either.

EvilSteve
6th September 11, 08:15 AM
Has anyone who proposes to prove the existence of god come up with a concrete definition of god? Is this just the generic "there is a being that created the universe" they're arguing for?

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 08:26 AM
What something that could be empirically tested? I doubt it.

EvilSteve
6th September 11, 08:36 AM
Doesn't have to be empirically testable, just has to be concrete. Mathematical theorems usually can't be proven empirically, but they are concrete in their definitions. For instance, if I say "the sum of the first N odd numbers is equal to N^2" that can't be proved empirically, but it is an unambiguous assertion (which can be proved algebraically in this case).

Looking at the ontological argument earlier in this post, I don't see WHAT they'r trying to prove the existence of. They label it "God" but it could just as well be labeled "flying spaghetti monster" to pick a cliched example.

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 08:43 AM
The only qualification I've seen is that it is a perfect God: omniscient, omnipotent, omnibenevolent etc.

WLC talks about the God of classical theism.

EvilSteve
6th September 11, 08:54 AM
Aha, so in other words, not the god described in any religion humanity has ever created?

Vieux Normand
6th September 11, 09:37 AM
Aha, so in other words, not the god described in any religion humanity has ever created?

Generally, run-of-the-mill monotheists go with "utterly beyond human attempts to define and describe" and so forth.

They then go on to attempt to name said deity and count up descriptions (omniscient, omnipresent-but-transcendent-as-opposed-to-immanent, benevolent, personal-as-opposed-to-impersonal, male, has a booming voice, et cetera). Some circles debate whether or not this supposedly-incorporeal being has a "face" and "hands". Muslims theologians seem to have gone so far as to say "has face and hands, but no body".

Trouble is, of course, that--given all these descriptions of 'that which is beyond description'--Yahweh/Allah doesn't make for a very credible Tao.

Lose the abrahamic dross and you might get somehwere.

Cullion
6th September 11, 09:59 AM
It doesn't shout "massive intellect that has the Atheist community on the run" to me either.

It's no weaker, from a rigidly logical perspective, than:-

i) The universe runs on unchanging, impersonal, mathematically describable laws.

ii) We know this because everything seems to obey some fixed set of physical laws. We can do repeatable experiments and stuff. We may discover new laws, but it's definitely the case that everything obeys some set of unchanging rules that have always existed, cannot be changed and do not have intellect, personality or purpose.

iii) Except when people report violations of said imagined laws, but then we assume they're insane or lying. Because there just has to be some rigid impersonal mathematics behind everything, I just know it. It's totally okay to believe that such laws exist and cannot change without knowing what they all are. Doubting point i) is prima facie evidence of mental illness.

iv) Therefore there is no God.

v) Nobody should smirk when Christopher Hitchens tries to be morally condescending about Mother Theresa.

Which is pretty much what people like Dawkins' have put their faith in.

EvilSteve
6th September 11, 10:23 AM
The fundamental flaw in the athiest "no god cuz science" argument is that science doesn't really try to PROVE anything- its purpose is to come up with workable models of reality. Best a scientist can say is "your working model of God does not match observable data." But theist arguments for God rarely are based on well-defined, testable, working models.

Ajamil
6th September 11, 10:46 AM
Your observable data is completely at the whim of a personal penultimate, and the idea of somehow constricting this being into a working model is offensive to the point of laughter.

But science is cool and flashy now, so all the theists try it anyway and look stupid doing so.

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 10:54 AM
I think the "no god cuz science" argument is simply a reaction to the "you can't explain X therefore god" argument.

EvilSteve
6th September 11, 11:22 AM
In reply to Craigypooh:

I think you're right, but that doesn't make it sensible.

I don't know there's any effective way to argue with someone who thinks "your theory doesn't explain everything, therefore my mythology in indisputable fact" though, so you get pointless debates about the existence of an ill-defined deity.

nihilist
6th September 11, 11:23 AM
The great thing about explaining a theoretical being is that you can ascribe any quality to it that suddenly becomes necessary.

Cullion
6th September 11, 12:41 PM
In reply to Craigypooh:

I think you're right, but that doesn't make it sensible.

I don't know there's any effective way to argue with someone who thinks "your theory doesn't explain everything, therefore my mythology in indisputable fact" though, so you get pointless debates about the existence of an ill-defined deity.

It's more than that. It's pointing out that your theory relies on belief in something metaphysical. Most hardline atheists don't realise they have a metaphysical belief system resting on unprovable assertions which run counter to evidence, but they do.

Ajamil
6th September 11, 01:04 PM
Is it possible to eradicate the metaphysical from one's belief system? Is it another infinite regression, like who made God?

AAAAAA
6th September 11, 01:21 PM
Cullion, is your strawman just a rhetorical device? Or do you actually think people like Dawkins believe your point "1"?
They just try and show that it's a sensible, useful hypotesis, while the bearded God is not most of the times, WHEN IT COMES TO EXPLAIN THE EXTERNAL WORLD. This is all the beef of Dawkins et al: the pretense of some religions to have a say in matters where they are obviously incompetent.

I think religion is a technique, an exquisitely human tool. Its use isn't in explaining the nature of the sensible world, not now that we have the infamous, objective scientific method and toolset.

Rather it's about consciousness, about ourselves and our own existence, a subjective topic by definition. No wonder people can't agree.

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 01:58 PM
"coz science" is valid when dealing with the "god of the gaps" argument. It is simply saying God is not a necessary assumption when explaining the world. I completely agree that stretching it to say "therefore no god" is invalid.

EvilSteve
6th September 11, 02:00 PM
It's more than that. It's pointing out that your theory relies on belief in something metaphysical. Most hardline atheists don't realise they have a metaphysical belief system resting on unprovable assertions which run counter to evidence, but they do.

Oddly enough, this is very close to the subject of my senior paper for my Buddhist ethics class. Suffice it to say, I concur.

Craigypooh
6th September 11, 02:24 PM
Most hardline atheists don't realise they have a metaphysical belief system resting on unprovable assertions which run counter to evidence, but they do.

What's your evidence for using the word "most".

nihilist
6th September 11, 04:02 PM
Most hardline atheists don't realise they have a metaphysical belief system resting on unprovable assertions which run counter to evidence, but they do.

'Hardline' anything sucks. The thing to remember is that is is human nature to attempt to corral what they deem as "the truth" so as to place it in the "solved" box because man is as fearful as he is arrogant. Just look at the arms race.

danno
6th September 11, 06:47 PM
"coz science" is valid when dealing with the "god of the gaps" argument. It is simply saying God is not a necessary assumption when explaining the world. I completely agree that stretching it to say "therefore no god" is invalid.

you can't stretch it to say "therefore no flying spaghetti monster" either.

we can reasonably assume that something most likely does not exist if there is no evidence for it. that doesn't mean it can't exist.

HappyOldGuy
6th September 11, 07:34 PM
All discussions about the existence or non existence of god are idiotic. If there isn't a flaw in the logic, then the answer is trivially derived from the premises.

Dawkins is a fucking idiot because of what he believes about religion. His beliefs about god are no more or less retarded than anyone elses.

danno
6th September 11, 08:45 PM
richard can be a dick (and "richard" can also be "dick").

but i think it's much less "retarded" to believe that god doesn't exist, rather than basing your perspective on life and the universe on something which has no empirical evidence to support it.

nihilist
6th September 11, 08:59 PM
But dude, they feel it.

danno
6th September 11, 09:27 PM
6000 posts, motherfucker.

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2208/2510814287_85b7c0802e_o.jpg

nihilist
6th September 11, 09:42 PM
I wasn't being flippant. The defining characteristic that agnostics lack is a certainty that they experience a direct connection with God.

danno
6th September 11, 09:48 PM
sorry, that wasn't directed at you.

nihilist
6th September 11, 09:49 PM
God forgives you.

HappyOldGuy
6th September 11, 10:12 PM
It's part of why it's retarded. The one thing that (sane) theists and atheists agree with is that if god exists, it is beyond logical or scientific proof. A hard atheist takes that to mean that they have won the argument, but that ignores that huge areas of human experience, truth, love, beauty, that are equally immune to scientific or rational proof, but that almost noone would deny exist and that most would value far more highly than scientific truth.

A truly hard scientific atheist like yours truly would simply find it laughable that hairless apes would assume that flawed sensory designed for identifying food is capable of comprehending the deepest mysteries of the universe.

danno
6th September 11, 10:49 PM
ignores that huge areas of human experience, truth, love, beauty, that are equally immune to scientific or rational proof, but that almost noone would deny exist and that most would value far more highly than scientific truth.

A truly hard scientific atheist like yours truly would simply find it laughable that hairless apes would assume that flawed sensory designed for identifying food is capable of comprehending the deepest mysteries of the universe.

there is excellent evidence that human emotion and subjective experience exists, however it's very difficult to quantify and model.

that's very different to god or the FSM, of which there is no evidence at all.

HappyOldGuy
6th September 11, 10:55 PM
There is exactly the same evidence for god that there is for beauty.

It's a truth found in experience, not evidence.

You keep trying to lay brick with a screwdriver.

danno
6th September 11, 11:06 PM
beauty is a word used to describe something which people find aesthetically pleasing. it's an artifact of consciousness and evolved instinctual behaviour. it's difficult to quantify beauty or consciousness, but they both exist. you can find scientific papers which investigate them both.

comparing that to the existence of god is silly.

danno
6th September 11, 11:11 PM
but it would make sense if your definition of god was that it's simply an emotion.

HappyOldGuy
6th September 11, 11:13 PM
beauty is a word used to describe something which people find aesthetically pleasing. it's an artifact of consciousness and evolved instinctual behaviour. it's difficult to quantify beauty or consciousness, but they both exist. you can find scientific papers which investigate them both.

comparing that to the existence of god is silly.

I can find scientific papers that examine the religious experience as well. Those papers aren't about god or beauty. It's okay, I understand. You are being intentionally blind because you are a hairless ape and your ape instincts are with the atheist tribe, so you want to throw poo at your rivals. It's perfectly natural. They want to throw poo at you too.

danno
6th September 11, 11:28 PM
that's just evidence that religious experiences exist. it isn't evidence that god exists or created the universe.

nihilist
7th September 11, 12:16 AM
But it could be.

danno
7th September 11, 12:24 AM
indeed. they could be feeling the FSM's noodly appendage and mistaking it for god, too.

nihilist
7th September 11, 01:00 AM
Just because you can't reach out and grab things doesn't mean they aren't there.

Who is to say that man isn't developing a way to sense other energy that surrounds him just as he developed eyes to see light.
Perhaps there is more to spiritual experience than 'meets the eye' so to speak.
I think it would be rather presumptuous to assume that man is done evolving or otherwise understanding what encompasses human potential.

danno
7th September 11, 02:36 AM
Perhaps there is more to spiritual experience than 'meets the eye' so to speak.

I think it would be rather presumptuous to assume that man is done evolving or otherwise understanding what encompasses human potential.

i'm not saying there can't be anything more. something weird might be discovered in the future.

who says man is done evolving? that would contradict scientific evidence.

nihilist
7th September 11, 03:08 AM
Not according to Devo.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 04:22 AM
but i think it's much less "retarded" to believe that god doesn't exist, rather than basing your perspective on life and the universe on something which has no empirical evidence to support it.

Now how is it you are defining God (TM pending)?

Coz you know if you define God (TM pending) as everything then everything you sense (ie gain empirical knowledge of) is de facto proof of God (TM pending)'s existence.

Q.E.D.

danno
7th September 11, 04:52 AM
if everything is god, you're just substituting the word "everything" with "god".

now, let's assume for the sake of argument that god DOES exist.

convince me he doesn't have shitting dick-nipples.

Cullion
7th September 11, 05:06 AM
that's just evidence that beautiful experiences exist. it isn't evidence that beauty exists.

What?

Hard atheists are also using circular reasoning based on faith in the invisible machine almost every time they dispute that a miracle really happened.

bob
7th September 11, 05:07 AM
now, let's assume for the sake of argument that god DOES exist.

convince me he doesn't have shitting dick-nipples.

Well... the bible says that God created chan in his own image. Or something.

danno
7th September 11, 05:47 AM
What?

Hard atheists are also using circular reasoning based on faith in the invisible machine almost every time they dispute that a miracle really happened.

if someone thinks they saw the loch ness monster, that doesn't mean it exists. if someone believes they speak to god, that is not evidence that god exists.

Cullion
7th September 11, 06:24 AM
First hand eyewitness accounts are evidence actually. Absolutely they are.

AAAAAA
7th September 11, 06:54 AM
First hand eyewitness accounts are evidence actually. Absolutely they are.

not really (http://agora.stanford.edu/sjls/Issue%20One/fisher&tversky.htm), especially if it's about a very improbable event.

But you already know that! You're just trolling to beat the stupid out of atheism.

Craigypooh
7th September 11, 07:34 AM
"Absence of evidence is not proof of absence" is strictly correct. This means you cannot put a probability of zero on the existence of God. Dawkins agrees with this I've heard him say so in interviews and I would expect most hard line atheists to agree with it too.

So in my view the argument goes:
Atheist: there is no evidence of God, therefore I'm not going to believe in God
Theist: the evidence is all around you - birds trees and pretty butterflies could not have emerged spontaneously
Atheist: no science can explain how these things emerged spontaneously, I don't need a God to explain them
Theist: you're just being closed minded
Atheist: if God really wants me to worship him then why doesn't he sit on a mighty throne in the North pole and fire lightening bolts at the unbelievers?
Theist: because he wants you to have free will
Atheist: then why did he leave all this supposed evidence around and why did he appear to all those people in the bible?
Theist: err, they were subtle hints to help you make the right decision
Atheist: talking to Moses in the form of a burning bush wasn't very subtle - he obviously wasn't too worried about Moses having any free will. Did he change his mind about the free will thing?
Theist: look your too stupid to understand God's mysterious ways you should just accept
Atheist: do you accept the existence of fairies, unicorns and invisible dragons?
Theist: no they're just fairy tales with no proof
Atheist: exactly
Theist: no coz look I got an ontological proof that God exists.
Atheist: you have proof?! But if god wants us to have free will then there can be no proof of god, therefore your proof is proof that God doesn't exist
Theist: fuck off

Cullion
7th September 11, 07:37 AM
Um, no. The difference in many cases would be that the theist believes themselves to have experienced God, and not experienced fairies and unicorns. When the theist told you about it, you'd use circular reasoning to tell him he was lying or insane because it contradicted your own blind faith in an invisible machine.

Cullion
7th September 11, 07:38 AM
not really (http://agora.stanford.edu/sjls/Issue%20One/fisher&tversky.htm), especially if it's about a very improbable event.

But you already know that! You're just trolling to beat the stupid out of atheism.

You can't assign a high improbability to something which people report all the time. You're using exactly the kind of circular reasoning I just explained.

AAAAAA
7th September 11, 07:54 AM
You can't assign a high improbability to something which people report all the time. You're using exactly the kind of circular reasoning I just explained.

I assign high improbability to their interpretation and explaination of the experience, not to the experience itself.

Cullion
7th September 11, 07:57 AM
Yes, but you're doing that based on your own faith in the invisible machine. This is a metaphysical construct you have faith in, not something you can prove the existence of.

Once you understand this, you'll see you've reached a limit of human reason.

AAAAAA
7th September 11, 08:07 AM
Yes, but you're doing that based on your own faith in the invisible machine. This is a metaphysical construct you have faith in, not something you can prove the existence of.

Once you understand this, you'll see you've reached a limit of human reason.

I understand your argument. I'd like you to think about the difference between "improbable" and "impossible". I don't need faith in your "point n.1" to deem something improbable.

Craigypooh
7th September 11, 08:17 AM
Um, no. The difference in many cases would be that the theist believes themselves to have experienced God, and not experienced fairies and unicorns. When the theist told you about it, you'd use circular reasoning to tell him he was lying or insane because it contradicted your own blind faith in an invisible machine.

The evidence that God exists because they have experienced God is lumped in with the pretty butterflies, rainbows and magnets. It is shit anecdotal evidence that can be explained by science. We get straight back to why isn't God sitting on a mighty throne.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 08:21 AM
if everything is god, you're just substituting the word "everything" with "god".

Well yes that is generally what Panthiesm does. Although it is more akin to replacing your narrow deinition of the word God (TM pending) with the concept of Universe.

The substitution has ramifications beyond a simplistic swapping of words.


now, let's assume for the sake of argument that god DOES exist.

convince me he doesn't have shitting dick-nipples

Eh? Why would I?

I am espousing a Spinozain/Einsteinian/Bucky-Fullereen panthiestic point of view not indulging your sexual wish list.

Arhetton
7th September 11, 08:26 AM
Religion is regarded by the common man as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.

Ajamil
7th September 11, 08:46 AM
I find it interesting that people think the appearance of incontrovertible proof of God would somehow destroy free will.

For instance - Craig, what if a being were to show up and actually set up a North Pole throne? I mean he just materializes some 5 mile high throne in no time at all and begins spouting lightning bolts out of his ass and wherever they hit diamonds explode. Then he tells you to give him all your stuff and start making babies so he can eat them. Oh, and by the way, he says he's God.

Would you fall down and worship? Would you do so if a more benevolent image showed up and started claiming Godhood?

Even if such a being could show power and ability beyond human comprehension, I don't think the majority of humanity would willingly surrender and give their lives to God. I think a lot of people would try and fight, I think even more would protest, and I think most would try to slap a follower label on themselves to try and get the new dude to be on their side.

Craigypooh
7th September 11, 09:19 AM
Don't worry too much about the throne analogy - it was intended to highlight the difference between a grainy picture of a big foot (that could easily be a guy in a suit) and a 10 foot tall, white-haired primate, screaming and clawing at you from inside one of the cages at the Bronx Zoo.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 09:21 AM
Religion is regarded by the common man as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.

Religion ~= God (TM pending)

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 09:31 AM
So in my view the argument goes:
Atheist: there is no evidence of God, therefore I'm not going to believe in God

The evidence is all around you - birds trees and pretty butterflies are all spontaneous manifestations of a part of God (TM pending)


Atheist: no science can explain how these things emerged spontaneously, I don't need a God to explain them

Err no it cant.


Atheist: if God really wants me to worship him then why doesn't he sit on a mighty throne in the North pole and fire lightening bolts at the unbelievers?

Athropomorphising God (TM pending) as an angry father says more about your psychological hang ups than it does about the nature of God (TM pending)

The rest of your argument is based on this childish assumption and so as far as I am concerned has no bearing the concpetion of God (TM pending) I'm promoting.

EvilSteve
7th September 11, 09:35 AM
It's 10PM. Do you know WHERE IS YOUR GOD NOW?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 10:05 AM
EVERYWHERE!

Craigypooh
7th September 11, 10:23 AM
Yes you're right there is an alternative ending to the argument:
Atheist: science can explain blah blah don't need God
Theist: no it can't
Atheist: yes it can fuck off

Please substitute 100 foot tall koala which fires moonbeams out its arse, which turn bad people into good people and heal everyone's little booboos.

lant3rn
7th September 11, 10:23 AM
Max, it looks like you got some of your God on my carpet.

I'll be sending you the cleaning bill.

HappyOldGuy
7th September 11, 10:24 AM
EVERYWHERE!

Specifically, balls deep in your mom.

Vieux Normand
7th September 11, 10:26 AM
Heard on the radio, a couple of weeks ago, that some astrophysicists claim to have found possible evidence of areas, in the known universe, where the laws of physics are not as they are here. The announcer quipped that what we know as "laws" in this sense may only be "local bylaws".

The person sharing my cafeteria table, a Muslim, didn't buy a word of it. This rather vocal refusal didn't stem from any pro-Newtonian, anti-quantum stance or any such. Apparently, there can only be one set of physical laws because that was taught to him, in his childhood madrassah, as proof positive that there is only one lawmaker.

Not sure how monotheists would view all this. How many "lawmakers" (gods) are there if there are different sets of laws in different areas of the observable universe? (Yes, I am aware that one god could set different laws for different places, but the gentleman at the table didn't seem to agree.) If monotheists claim that one deity is better than many, can one then not also claim that zero--being similarly fewer--is better than one?

Can the arguments, for the existence of one deity, not also be arguments for the existence of more than one? I'm just curious on this point because many--if not all--of the pro-deity arguments are presented by monotheists who--due to their upbringing or whatever--tend to see "one god" as somehow "better" than "many gods".

Cullion
7th September 11, 10:30 AM
The evidence that God exists because they have experienced God is lumped in with the pretty butterflies, rainbows and magnets. It is shit anecdotal evidence that can be explained by science.

Everything that stems from your faith can be explained within their framework, so you are back where you started.

OZZ
7th September 11, 10:32 AM
Heard on the radio, a couple of weeks ago, that some astrophysicists claim to have found possible evidence of areas, in the known universe, where the laws of physics are not as they are here. The announcer quipped that what we know as "laws" in this sense may only be "local bylaws".

The person sharing my cafeteria table, a Muslim, didn't buy a word of it. This rather vocal refusal didn't stem from any pro-Newtonian, anti-quantum stance or any such. Apparently, there can only be one set of physical laws because that was taught to him, in his childhood madrassah, as proof positive that there is only one lawmaker.

Not sure how monotheists would view all this. How many "lawmakers" (gods) are there if there are different sets of laws in different areas of the observable universe? (Yes, I am aware that one god could set different laws for different places, but the gentleman at the table didn't seem to agree.) If monotheists claim that one deity is better than many, can one then not also claim that zero--being similarly fewer--is better than one?

Can the arguments, for the existence of one deity, not also be arguments for the existence of more than one? I'm just curious on this point because many--if not all--of the pro-deity arguments are presented by monotheists who--due to their upbringing or whatever--tend to see "one god" as somehow "better" than "many gods".

And of course, said monotheists will argue that their god is 'the true god' and all the millions of people of other faith's are delusional...
I had a short conversation along these lines with my father in law, a devout Greek-Orthodox, a year or so after we met.
It was the last conversation on religion/god we ever had.

HappyOldGuy
7th September 11, 10:37 AM
It's not so much that god exists, as that atheists don't.

lant3rn
7th September 11, 10:45 AM
There is no objective reality. You're all just just peices of my consciousness, playing out a script of my unconcious design, for my own amusement.

AAAAAA
7th September 11, 10:49 AM
Can the arguments, for the existence of one deity, not also be arguments for the existence of more than one? I'm just curious on this point because many--if not all--of the pro-deity arguments are presented by monotheists who--due to their upbringing or whatever--tend to see "one god" as somehow "better" than "many gods".

That's one of Dawkins' and friends main arguments indeed. Conveniently packed in the catchy sentence "I just believe in one god fewer than you".

nihilist
7th September 11, 10:49 AM
'God' won't be attending the debate












































































































or will he?

Craigypooh
7th September 11, 11:15 AM
Everything that stems from your faith can be explained within their framework, so you are back where you started.

For the avoidance of doubt I agree. But my framework is better.

lant3rn
7th September 11, 11:20 AM
my framework is better.

What qualities are YOU basing this descision on.

Cullion
7th September 11, 11:30 AM
It should be apparent by now that the raw force of dork-logic just isn't sufficient to answer a lot of important questions.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 11:41 AM
Specifically, balls deep in your mom.

and yours too dont foget!

OZZ
7th September 11, 11:44 AM
It should be apparent by now that the raw force of dork-logic just isn't sufficient to answer a lot of important questions.

Define dork logic..

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 11:45 AM
Yes you're right there is an alternative ending to the argument:
Atheist: science can explain blah blah don't need God
Theist: no it can't
Atheist: yes it can fuck off

If it could explain everything then there would be no need for people like Leonard Suskind (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonard_Susskind) cuz u no science knows everything.



Please substitute 100 foot tall koala which fires moonbeams out its arse, which turn bad people into good people and heal everyone's little booboos

Why? Again I'm not advocating the existence of anything that cannot be directly obsereved by you the viewer.

HappyOldGuy
7th September 11, 11:46 AM
But my framework is better.

By what standard? They are healthier, happier, more productive, and contribute more to their communities. (all of which is "scientifically" documented)

Unless there is a galactic shortage of whine, I'm not seeing your upside.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 11:46 AM
Max, it looks like you got some of your God on my carpet.

I'll be sending you the cleaning bill.

You should cherish it as God (TM pending) Poo and worship it you fucking heathen!

Cullion
7th September 11, 11:47 AM
Convincing yourself something is true by reasoning from unexamined axioms which you never realised actually require unprovable belief.

OZZ
7th September 11, 11:49 AM
Knowledge = justified, true belief tied down by reason.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 11:51 AM
Knowledge = justified, true belief tied down by reason.

LOL

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
7th September 11, 11:52 AM
I was going to type something long and protracted refuting what you typed OZZ but just couldnt stop giggling

¦:¬ D

HappyOldGuy
7th September 11, 11:53 AM
Knowledge = justified, true belief tied down by reason.

Reason is such a whiny top.

OZZ
7th September 11, 12:24 PM
lol
That was one definition I remember being thrown out there in Epistemology class..

Vieux Normand
7th September 11, 12:42 PM
Garden-variety atheists: "We ALONE possess the truth."

Run-of-the-mill monotheists: "No, we alone possess the truth."

Both packs will now attempt to browbeat, upon everyone else, the truth(s?) that they alone possess.

See? We're not alone.

Ajamil
7th September 11, 03:58 PM
Craig, what would you consider as incontrovertible proof that a being who claimed to be divine actually is God? If such proof came about, would you then surrender your life to this being?

Feryk
7th September 11, 04:47 PM
Aj, you should think about the question before you ask it.

IF a being showed up and said 'Yep, I'm God. Creator of the universe and you, specifically, now worship my awesomeness,' how do you think the world at large would react? I'm guessing absolute terror.

The question of whether or not you would surrender your life to such a being is a moot point. If he did exist, and he did show himself directly, then he is essentially assuming control over his creations. Your 'choice' wouldn't exist.

Robot Jesus
7th September 11, 05:27 PM
Ever hear of a well known atheist finding god? A lot of writers have claimed to have not believed at some point and then finding god; but how many of them were actual atheists, and how many just had never made god an important part of their lives before.

resolve
7th September 11, 06:43 PM
Ever hear of a well known atheist finding god?

Finding God:
C.S. Lewis (atheists claim he was never a "true atheist" - irony)
Joy Gresham (Lewis' wife, also a former atheist)
Francis Collins (God must have had a hand in directing evolution, Dawkins called him cowardly in a debate referring to "god of the gaps")
Bo Giertz (from atheist to minister)
Kirk Cameron (although yes lol @ banana video, he was an atheist which makes him an especially delicious target for internet atheists)
Anna Haycraft (raised atheist became roman catholic)
William Jay Murray (son of militant atheist Madalyn Murray O'Hair)
Lee Strobel (lawyer, author of the "Case For Christ")
Monty White (from evolutionist to creationist)
Nicko McBrain (drummer of Iron Maiden)
Edith Stein (philosopher, declared a saint by RCC)
Lacey Mosley (lead vocalist for Flyleaf)
Nina Karin Monsen (philosopher, was raised in humanistic atheism)
Alister McGrath (biochemist and one of the leading opponents of Richard Dawkins)
Khang Khek Leu (former Phnom Penh detention worker)
Félix Leseur (doctor turned priest)
Ignace Lepp (atheistic communist to priest)
Anders Borg (Sweden's Minister of Finance)
Steve Beren (atheistic communist to conservative christian politician)
George R. Price (geneticist to christian writer and homeless caretaker)
Dame Cicely Saunders (Templeton Prize and Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize winning nurse)
Fay Weldon (British novelist and feminist)
Allen Tate (American poet, consultant to Library of Congress)
Peter Steele (lead singer of Type O Negative)
Enoch Powell (British Conservative Party member)
Marvin Olasky (Marxist Atheist now edits Christian World magazine)
Brian Welch (former guitarist of Korn)
Josh Hamilton (Major League Baseball player)
Norma McCorvey (the PLAINTIFF in Roe vs Wade, later became Pro-Life)
Brian Sumner (famous skater from the UK)

Larry Flynt converted to christianity for one year before taking backsies
Anne Rice converted to christianity for several years also before taking backsies

Accepting there probably is a god (deism/agnosticism/spiritism of some sort):
Anthony Flew
Kirsten Powers
Plutarco Elías Calles
John Dobson (astronomer convert to hinduism)

Charles Darwin was actually an agnostic who stated "For myself, I do not believe that there ever has been any revelation. As for a future life, every man must judge for himself between conflicting vague probabilities."


There's more... I'm just tired of trying to remember lol.

Robot Jesus
7th September 11, 07:17 PM
how man of those are on the record saying there is no god and theists are very silly, and how many just never really talked about religion before they found god. What changed for them.

"I was lost and now I am saved" is a common meme; I suspect some people on that list where never really serious about atheism.

danno
7th September 11, 07:25 PM
Convincing yourself something is true by reasoning from unexamined axioms which you never realised actually require unprovable belief.

i'm not sure what you're talking about. it's non-belief. if there is no evidence of something, i see no reason to believe it. i shouldn't have to explain that, you should have to explain your belief in something for which there is no scientific evidence.

religious experiences can be explained by what happens in the human brain, we don't need anything outside it. it's a huge leap to assume that people are communicating with an intelligence who created of the universe. why should i believe that is the case? what evidence demonstrates that it exists and i can communicate with it?

if many people see the sun rise and assume it's being pushed by a giant dung beetle, that doesn't make it true. it's paranormal conjecture, the furthest thing from the scientific method.

do you believe in god? if so, why? do you think it's likely or unlikely there are multiple gods?

resolve
7th September 11, 07:35 PM
how man of those are on the record saying there is no god and theists are very silly

Just about every one of them.

Does it matter?

nihilist
7th September 11, 08:57 PM
I'll bet all of those 'atheists' had early religious indoctrination.

resolve
7th September 11, 08:57 PM
/facepalm

This forum has serious problems with reading...


Also, it's even ironic that I posted on the first person I listed that it was ironic that atheists didn't consider him a "true atheist" (because you've NEVER heard a religious person say that right?) and then you guys go on and repeat that meme yourselves on all the others as well.

It's so thick you could cut it with a knife LOL!

danno
7th September 11, 09:01 PM
i'm not trying to convert anyone here, btw. i'm just defending non-belief in things for which there is no empirical evidence.

nihilist
7th September 11, 09:10 PM
Someone raised in a Christian family who claims atheism and then backslides into the arms of jebus is not any kind of atheist at all, let alone a 'true' atheist.

resolve
7th September 11, 09:12 PM
It's just... it's just too precious.

I'm dying here I really am :).

nihilist
7th September 11, 09:17 PM
Nobody finds Jebus without prepubescent indoctrination, drug dependency, or threat of prison rape.

Arhetton
7th September 11, 09:19 PM
Religion ~= God (TM pending)

you're just saying something useless like god = universe. God is closely associated with religion and people who hide from that are dishonest. Dawkins is not against the Einsteinian sense of 'god' (meaning, the laws of nature), he is absolutely opposed to religion. Which makes him wise, but not a ruler.

Using the 'unmoved mover' to justify beliefs in things like christianity or hinduism or islam is just completely ignorant of all progress in human understanding.

If you know so much more about God than me then you must be a genius, on a par with newton, euler, dirac, maxwell, einstein, feynman etc. I doubt it.

Ajamil
7th September 11, 09:22 PM
Aj, you should think about the question before you ask it.

IF a being showed up and said 'Yep, I'm God. Creator of the universe and you, specifically, now worship my awesomeness,' how do you think the world at large would react? I'm guessing absolute terror.That's exactly my point. Even if such a being were to show up and do nothing but good for all in the most literal and unassuming way the world would reject surrender. This existence is a place for souls who for whatever reason use their free will to reject rather than accept God. Whether he/she/it actually shows up will not change that.


The question of whether or not you would surrender your life to such a being is a moot point. If he did exist, and he did show himself directly, then he is essentially assuming control over his creations. Your 'choice' wouldn't exist.Why? How? Take it literally - God shows up and says "Bow down." Do you bow?

Don't imagine a threat. Don't imagine some doubt as to whether it's God or not. There's just the knowledge that you are before an omnipotent, omnibenevolent thing and it appears to have requested that you bow. Why do you no longer have a choice?

Also, Antony Flew. (http://www.simpletoremember.com/articles/a/atheist-believes-in-god/) (Edit: Actually, resolve got him already, but I think the link is nice support.)

resolve
7th September 11, 10:23 PM
Nobody finds Jebus without prepubescent indoctrination, drug dependency, or threat of prison rape.

When Jesus heard this, he told them, "Healthy people don't need a doctor--sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners."


Since you're so perfect, you should do just fine...

nihilist
7th September 11, 10:36 PM
Why does your God not offer something for healthy, well adjusted people?

AAAAAA
8th September 11, 02:30 AM
Why does your God not offer something for healthy, well adjusted people?

You can be as healthy and well-adjusted as you want, but you're still a sinner. And if you haven't sinned recently, there's the original Sin always with you.
I guess some people never develop the symptoms, don't know they need a cure, and they die as sinners, to the dismay of Jesus.

Robot Jesus
8th September 11, 03:52 AM
when someone is very angry with god for not existing, he might find it in himself to see what he wants and then forgive what he sees.

what I'm looking for is an atheist who is cool with god not existing and speaks at length about there being no god; then one day deciding that he does and that's much cooler.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 04:06 AM
you're just saying something useless like god = universe..

I find it quite useful personaly.


God is closely associated with religion and people who hide from that are dishonest. Dawkins is not against the Einsteinian sense of 'god' (meaning, the laws of nature), he is absolutely opposed to religion. Which makes him wise, but not a ruler..

I agree the most prevailant concepts of God (TM pending) are associated with power structures deeply embedded within society.


Using the 'unmoved mover' to justify beliefs in things like christianity or hinduism or islam is just completely ignorant of all progress in human understanding.

Agreed




If you know so much more about God than me then you must be a genius, on a par with newton, euler, dirac, maxwell, einstein, feynman etc. I doubt it.

I havent claimed any such thing just presented a personal interpretation on the idea of God (TM pending). Your snark bite is unjustified.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 04:09 AM
Since you're so perfect, you should do just fine...


OOOooOoo veiled threat of hell and damnation!

Ajamil
8th September 11, 05:10 AM
what I'm looking for is an atheist who is cool with god not existing and speaks at length about there being no god; then one day deciding that he does and that's much cooler.Did you read the link on Antony Flew? Guy wrote two books on Atheism, then decided the science in his opinion points to Deism.

Craigypooh
8th September 11, 06:04 AM
Craig, what would you consider as incontrovertible proof that a being who claimed to be divine actually is God? If such proof came about, would you then surrender your life to this being?

The 100ft tall moonbeam koala would be sufficient.

Yes, as soon as I was hit by an arse moonbeam.

Craigypooh
8th September 11, 06:22 AM
By what standard? They are healthier, happier, more productive, and contribute more to their communities. (all of which is "scientifically" documented)

Unless there is a galactic shortage of whine, I'm not seeing your upside.


The problem with your "scientific" documentation is that it doesn't prove cause and effect only correlation.

There are lots of atheists who are former theists but changed when their God dealt them a really shitty life. The lack of health, happiness led them to atheism not the the other way round. Also lack of health and happiness leads you to be less productive and to contribute less to your community, so that's just double counting.

This is the same as the detailed analysis which suggested not drinking alcohol was really unhealthy, until someone thought to remove the former alcoholics and people with liver failure from the data.

EvilSteve
8th September 11, 07:30 AM
Why does your God not offer something for healthy, well adjusted people?

I think that's called Heaven.

The best way I've heard it put to date is that God cares about your spiritual well being, not your physical well being. So if you want something in this life, talk to Satan.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 09:23 AM
Do you have his phone number?

666

bcYppAs6ZdI

Vieux Normand
8th September 11, 09:30 AM
I think that's called Heaven.

The best way I've heard it put to date is that God cares about your spiritual well being, not your physical well being. So if you want something in this life, talk to Satan.

So far much of this, um, 'debate' seems between christians (or those raised in that environment) and atheists, as if theirs are the only two extant worldviews. If this is so, those posters who have made a "god-is-the-universe" type of statement had best remember that abrahamics are exhorted to "worship the creator, not the creation"...y'know, the whole "god-was-in-the-storm-but-god-was-not-the-storm" biblical routine.

Theirs is a god that exists outside of what they see as a mechanical universe (except for one deity and human beings, with their 'souls'). This is why they often accuse all atheists of believing in a solely-mechanical universe: that would be their own cosmology, with the exception of absence deity and 'souls'. As they see it, atheists cannot believe in anything spiritual if it is not within the context of a specific type of theism, usually monotheism of mid-eastern origins.

This is also why atheists are often accused of placing our species at the pinnacle of existence, rather than being part of a greater web of existence. The more common monotheisms have a hierarchy which places a deity at the very top, our species as some kind of deity-appointed co-regent (compared to other life, but still subservient to the diety), and all other life far below. They then accuse atheists as simply having maintained the very same hierarchy, minus the deity.

The problem is, there are other views and traditions out there. There are a great many cosmologies, worldwide, which do not stem from either monotheism or monotheism-minus-deity. As long as god-versus-no-god discussions are limited to a pair of cosmologies defined by only one tradition versus one reaction to it, they will continue in their present form: circling the drain, same arguments and retorts, over and over.

Meanwhile, I have yet to hear why any "in-favour-of-god" arguments posted cannot just as easily be "in-favour-of-the-gods" arguments. Any takers?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 09:58 AM
So far much of this, um, 'debate' seems between christians (or those raised in that environment) and atheists, as if theirs are the only two extant worldviews. If this is so, those posters who have made a "god-is-the-universe" type of statement had best remember that abrahamics are exhorted to "worship the creator, not the creation"...y'know, the whole "god-was-in-the-storm-but-god-was-not-the-storm" biblical routine.

Theirs is a god that exists outside of what they see as a mechanical universe (except for one deity and human beings, with their 'souls'). This is why they often accuse all atheists of believing in a solely-mechanical universe: that would be their own cosmology, with the exception of absence deity and 'souls'. As they see it, atheists cannot believe in anything spiritual if it is not within the context of a specific type of theism, usually monotheism of mid-eastern origins.

This is also why atheists are often accused of placing our species at the pinnacle of existence, rather than being part of a greater web of existence. The more common monotheisms have a hierarchy which places a deity at the very top, our species as some kind of deity-appointed co-regent (compared to other life, but still subservient to the diety), and all other life far below. They then accuse atheists as simply having maintained the very same hierarchy, minus the deity.

The problem is, there are other views and traditions out there. There are a great many cosmologies, worldwide, which do not stem from either monotheism or monotheism-minus-deity. As long as god-versus-no-god discussions are limited to a pair of cosmologies defined by only one tradition versus one reaction to it, they will continue in their present form: circling the drain, same arguments and retorts, over and over.

Nicely put.


Meanwhile, I have yet to hear why any "in-favour-of-god" arguments posted cannot just as easily be "in-favour-of-the-gods" arguments. Any takers?

I have no problem with multiple Gods (TMs pending) or what may defined as such by the limited conciousness that we possess.

I would see them as manifestations of Universe which could of course be Multiverse.

nihilist
8th September 11, 10:03 AM
You can be as healthy and well-adjusted as you want, but you're still a sinner. And if you haven't sinned recently, there's the original Sin always with you.
I guess some people never develop the symptoms, don't know they need a cure, and they die as sinners, to the dismay of Jesus. Having God attach original sin to me is impinging on my free will.

nihilist
8th September 11, 10:05 AM
OOOooOoo veiled threat of hell and damnation!

Who
Would
Jesus
Damnate?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 10:08 AM
Where there's blame there's a claim!

EvilSteve
8th September 11, 10:10 AM
Meanwhile, I have yet to hear why any "in-favour-of-god" arguments posted cannot just as easily be "in-favour-of-the-gods" arguments. Any takers?

Nope. I've never even heard anyone try to prove that the divine object must be singular. Well, not unless it's your basic ranting "God exists and he's a man" type of BS.

For that matter, I don't think I've ever heard any one of the QED God crowd even try to prove that God is GOOD. Wouldn't it be a larf if a bunch of butthurt Christian scholars accidentally proved Gnosticism to be correct?

nihilist
8th September 11, 10:17 AM
Meanwhile, I have yet to hear why any "in-favour-of-god" arguments posted cannot just as easily be "in-favour-of-the-gods" arguments. Any takers?

The trinity has already been invented.
Seriously, man's feeble attempts at imagining things he doesn't understand is not going to be any more compelling no matter how many gods one contrives.

Arhetton
8th September 11, 10:20 AM
I havent claimed any such thing just presented a personal interpretation on the idea of God (TM pending). Your snark bite is unjustified.

I'm sorry I do not intend to puff myself up to be anything special either, I know that I am a bug next to those intellects and it frustrates the shit out of me when people like this william craig character (who I have since gone to watch on youtube) claim to be not only religious experts, but philosophical and scientific ones.

In fact I find this topic so frustrating and time wasting that I prefer to stay out of the arguments altogether.

Like someone else put it more eloquently in the thread, this man is just looking for a place to 'hide his god', and then justify all of his other beliefs (jesus etc). Might as well be unicorns.

nihilist
8th September 11, 10:24 AM
So: "God can't not exist, ergo Jesus died for your sins."

Sounds sensible to me.

Ajamil
8th September 11, 11:16 AM
The 100ft tall moonbeam koala would be sufficient.

Yes, as soon as I was hit by an arse moonbeam.Really? That's it? No future predictions? No breaking of the physical laws? No eradication of some great world ill in an instant? You're easy to please.

The best way I've heard it put to date is that God cares about your spiritual well being, not your physical well being. So if you want something in this life, talk to Satan.
Basically what I would say, although Shiva is a much nicer person in our cosmology than Satan - he's just fickle. There's actually a nice parable about how Vishnu was asked if he's the topmost, why are all his followers in rags, and all of Shiva's followers so very opulent. Basic moral of material wealth anchoring you to this existence.

The problem is, there are other views and traditions out there. There are a great many cosmologies, worldwide, which do not stem from either monotheism or monotheism-minus-deity. As long as god-versus-no-god discussions are limited to a pair of cosmologies defined by only one tradition versus one reaction to it, they will continue in their present form: circling the drain, same arguments and retorts, over and over.

Meanwhile, I have yet to hear why any "in-favour-of-god" arguments posted cannot just as easily be "in-favour-of-the-gods" arguments. Any takers?I can only represent the cosmology I follow. You are welcome to bring up these other systems of thought and belief in the thread.

As for the one God or many gods thing - I see no contradiction. My cosmology has an entire pantheon, although I know the demigods are not what you mean. God for me also exists as infinite personalities. They aren't the same being, but they are non-different. It's kinda hard to get the connotation right with just words.

The quality of bhagavan is important here - it's basically my definition of God (although my personal one has a few tweaks to better fit my mind). Bhagavan is a personality that is infinitely opulent in wealth, fame, strength, knowledge, beauty, and independence (more literally, renunciation). If a person can show me this about themselves, then they are God to me. Well how about JHWH? He's not concisely described that way, but it seems to be the general gist so yep - He's God. What about Balarama? Yep - same qualities, He's God.

These are not the same personalities. They are not described as looking the same, they do not feel the same way about things, they do not do the same things. Yet both are personalities within the Godhead. Is there a hierarchy in the infinite personalities of God? Our philosophy says a hesitant yes - there is a supreme personality, but all the personalities are ultimately non-different.

Perhaps you could say it's a bit like looking at infinite mathematical functions. Take y=x^2 and y=2^x. These are different functions: they give wildly different answers (in most places) and they progress toward infinity at different rates. Still, both are infinite, and there is no difference in those infinities.

And that's kinda my problem with asking about multiple Gods. Can you have more than one infinite? Just because a line is infinite points and a plane is infinite lines doesn't mean a plane has more infinity than a line (which still bugs me - it should, dern it).

HappyOldGuy
8th September 11, 12:00 PM
Why does your God not offer something for healthy, well adjusted people?

Religious people are healthier and better adjusted than atheists. Full stop. Documented to fuck and back.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 12:01 PM
Can you have more than one infinite?

Yes you can. Think about this for instance,

Between every number there are an infinite number of rational divisions (fractions) that can be made, between those fraction there are an infinite number of irrational numers (numbers that cant be represented by a fraction, or ratio) eg square root of 2. So between each number there are at least two infinties ie infinity squared divisions. So thats a least two types of infinty and then of course there are an infinte number of numbers so you get infinty cubed.....and so on ad infinitum........

Cantor was so freaked by the metaphysical implication of this he couldnt bring himself to call these number infinte and coined the term transfinite

OZZ
8th September 11, 12:02 PM
And if you haven't sinned recently, there's the original Sin always with you.

^^^Why Christianity sucks^^^

Craigypooh
8th September 11, 12:06 PM
Really? That's it? No future predictions? No breaking of the physical laws? No eradication of some great world ill in an instant? You're easy to please.[COLOR=#d3d3d3].

Don't doubt the power of the Koala arse moonbeam.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 12:34 PM
Don't doubt the power of the Koala arse moonbeam.

“Look for the ridiculous in everything and you will find it.” Jules Renard, 1890

Ajamil
8th September 11, 12:36 PM
Yes you can. Think about this for instance,

Between every number there are an infinite number of rational divisions (fractions) that can be made, between those fraction there are an infinite number of irrational numers (numbers that cant be represented by a fraction, or ratio) eg square root of 2. So between each number there are at least two infinties ie infinity squared divisions. So thats a least two types of infinty and then of course there are an infinte number of numbers so you get infinty cubed.....and so on ad infinitum........

Cantor was so freaked by the metaphysical implication of this he couldnt bring himself to call these number infinte and coined the term transfiniteI think my visual of points/lines/planes/space is easier to understand, but you still end up saying nonsense terms like infinity squared.

Why do arbitrary divisions make the infinite sequences a different type? What if you take just the even numbers - well that's a infinite series. So is the series of odd numbers now a different type of infinity? What about just the numbers divisible by five?


Why Christianity sucksI agree this is always a point that staves me off. To say that my default position is sinner due to someone else's choice, and that somehow I am the one that has to fix this even though the flaw is left in place by God just irks me. In Hinduism the Original Sin was a choice made by each and every soul.

Don't doubt the power of the Koala arse moonbeam.
We got 33 million demigods listed in our pantheon, and I'm sure Sri-Koala fits in with them just fine. I can respect power and believe a being is on some plane higher than my existence without saying it's Bhagavan. So far, however, it doesn't sound like this being's much more than an advanced yogi.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
8th September 11, 12:47 PM
Why do arbitrary divisions make the infinite sequences a different type? What if you take just the even numbers - well that's a infinite series. So is the series of odd numbers now a different type of infinity? What about just the numbers divisible by five?

They are sets of infinite numbers. So you have the set of infinite lines on a plane and the infinte set of numbers divisible by 5 and the infinite set of even numbers and the.....well I'm sure you get the idea. Each of the sets is different because it is constrcuted in a different way. They are all infinite and yet different. (Which is kinda like what you said earlier about God(s) (TM(s) pending)

(BTW the text editor here is really buggy keeps jumping about all over the place)

Craigypooh
8th September 11, 01:43 PM
They are sets of infinite numbers. So you have the set of infinite lines on a plane and the infinte set of numbers divisible by 5 and the infinite set of even numbers and the.....well I'm sure you get the idea. Each of the sets is different because it is constrcuted in a different way. They are all infinite and yet different. (Which is kinda like what you said earlier about God(s) (TM(s) pending)

(BTW the text editor here is really buggy keeps jumping about all over the place)

It's more than that. A countable infinity is an infinite number that can be mapped onto the natural numbers. An uncountable infinity is an infinite number which can't be mapped onto the natural numbers.

Odd numbers, even number, integers and rational numbers are all a countable infinity.

Irrational numbers and real numbers are both an uncountable infinity.

Robot Jesus
8th September 11, 01:53 PM
Did you read the link on Antony Flew? Guy wrote two books on Atheism, then decided the science in his opinion points to Deism.

That's about as close to what I was looking for that I'm probably likely to get. Deism is not a retarded position, the big bang is not a terribly satisfying creation story, intellectually or emotionally. I find ID offensive not on it's own merits, but that it functions as a trojan horse for a very specific theoretical designer.

I was trying to find a reasoned atheist who wasn't just "going through a phase"; who found not only that there might be a god, but that he knows in his heart that it's a specific one.

EvilSteve
8th September 11, 02:40 PM
It's more than that. A countable infinity is an infinite number that can be mapped onto the natural numbers. An uncountable infinity is an infinite number which can't be mapped onto the natural numbers.

Odd numbers, even number, integers and rational numbers are all a countable infinity.

Irrational numbers and real numbers are both an uncountable infinity.

The documentary Dangerous Knowledge (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8492625684649921614) has a great section on levels of infinity. Worth a look for anyone with time and interest. Although I do have a problem with the blurb describing Alan Turing as being driven to suicide by his genius. As I recall, that was British intelligence that did that.

Cullion
8th September 11, 02:44 PM
I was trying to find a reasoned atheist who wasn't just "going through a phase"; who found not only that there might be a god, but that he knows in his heart that it's a specific one.

C.S. Lewis was an atheist until his early 30s. First he became a theist, then a couple of years later he became a Christian (episcopalian, or anglican as we call it here). He wrote about his transition from one to the other, in several books.

Vieux Normand
8th September 11, 02:59 PM
I can only represent the cosmology I follow.

Bullshit. I do not follow any abrahamic faith, but I can describe its tenets (transcendence of deity as opposed to immanence, 'souls', humans as co-regents over other life on Earth, and so on) whether I buy them or not. You can fucking well do likewise.


You are welcome to bring up these other systems of thought and belief in the thread.

Okay. I'll pick a tradition. In Nordic mythology, the single phenomenon which creates and sustains the multiverse is a force called Örlog (Ur-Law). This name is merely a matter of conversational convenience, as--much like the Tao and other such--it is beyond any name or description. No attempt is made to limit it with any terms like "god", gender, human emotions like wrath, or any other attributes. It is beyond any matter of "personal" versus "impersonal", "immanent" versus "transcendent" and is not addressed in rites. This appears to be the place of "god" in, say, mid-eastern traditions, but it is worth noting that these latter simply took one of their original deities (according to some theologians, a perpetually-angry volcano-god called Al-Shaddai) and raised it to supremacy with the name of Yahweh. Trouble is, while they raised this being to universal-force status, they left it imbued with tribal-god baggage: gender, human emotions such as wrath, and so on.

In Nordic tradition, gods are not equated with Ur-Law: like all else in the multiverse, they are subject to it. Their position might be likened, in some ways, with that of saints in mid-eastern tradition. Much depends on how one defines a "god". Like other traditions such as Shinto, the Nordic gods can be identified as personifications of forces of nature. Others, like Jung, see them as tribal archetypes inhabiting our subconscious. As we are not separate from nature, there is no reason not to see them as both.

Examples? Thunor as thunder, the electricity that arcs across a stormy sky (the very same force that urges our cardial nodes, giving us the heartbeat that keeps us alive for a time). Scientifically, thunder can be represented on a blackboard in terms of little letter-e-minuses while the same chalk drawing of the ground features little letter-e-pluses, finishing with a zap-drawing of a charge racing from cloud to ground or vice-versa. This is a scientific working-model representation. If one belongs to a culture that also has a mythic representation--such as a rollicking redbeard with a huge hammer--then these are merely complementary models of the same force of nature. One in no way tries to deny or interfere with the other. That is why the much-discussed "science-versus-religion" debate is actually more of a "science-versus-some-religions" debate.

Whether one wishes to argue that thunder cannot be deified because it isn't conscious, one may refer to Heisenberg's uncertainty principle, which mathematically demonstrates that the very act of observing a phenomenon changes that which is being observed. In that case, attempting to delineate a line between what is "conscious" and what isn't, in our universe, might be an uncertain prospect at best. (It is also why a "mechanistic universe" might have been fine in DesCartes' time, but is--at bes--an incomplete vision for this day and age).

Likewise, Woden would embody the wind--not just the wind between trees, but the 'wind' of exhaled spoken words between people (which is why old One-Eye is considered a god of teaching). Sif, like her cognate "sheaf", symbolises fertility, while Tiw (cognate of Zeus and Ju-piter) personifies the everlasting sky which looks equally upon all--not just the space over our heads, but also the space that forms most of the volume of what we call "matter", being the separating force that gives our universe--and all the matter in it--the shape that allows it to exist for the span it is given.

These forces interact, in harmony and in conflict, to create and sustain (for a time) all that is, including us. Seen this way, one might call us "children of the gods".

How to pray to these deities? The tradition in question does not demand the bent-knee begging common to certain other traditions. One hails the gods standing straight up and pledges to follow their examples as best we can: to try, as best we can, to be as strong as Thunor, as swift and wise as Woden, as just as Tiw, and so on and so forth.

There. You wanted another worldview--there it is. One can describe this tradition by being well-enough read to do so. This need not include a claim to "represent" it in any way.

Robot Jesus
8th September 11, 03:35 PM
C.S. Lewis was an atheist until his early 30s. First he became a theist, then a couple of years later he became a Christian (episcopalian, or anglican as we call it here). He wrote about his transition from one to the other, in several books.

Who described himself as angry at god for not existing.

Ajamil
8th September 11, 03:39 PM
So how is this different than other polytheistic philosophies? Is there something vital I missed that would make you deny the similarities between Ur-Law and Brahman?

resolve
8th September 11, 03:53 PM
the place of "god" in, say, mid-eastern traditions, but it is worth noting that these latter simply took one of their original deities (according to some theologians, a perpetually-angry volcano-god called Al-Shaddai) and raised it to supremacy with the name of Yahweh. Trouble is, while they raised this being to universal-force status, they left it imbued with tribal-god baggage: gender, human emotions such as wrath, and so on.


1) What theologians? Really, who? I'd like to read this, because in all my studies, I've never heard of an angry volcano god outside of Pacific Islander culture.

2) El is the original term that I've heard used. It is the noun for a singular god in the Hebrew language. Elohim is its plural. The term El, meaning god, was borrowed from Mesopotamian languages who often had an "El" as the head of a pantheon (although not always, for instance some had a relatively close "Ea" - god of wisdom and Anu as the head deity). Also of note is that the Sumerians had Ur as one of their city-states and Abraham and his wife Sarah came from Ur. Sumerian religion had Anu as the head deity with Ea as the wisdom god... no El. This also correlates with El being a borrowed word.

3) El Shaddai means God Almighty in the traditional English translations. In Greek it is God of the Heavens. Some translators believe it should be God of the Mountain because the related Akkadian semitic language has a word "shadu" which is similar that means mountain. It's one of many cases (El Elyon, El Roi, et cetera) of a descriptor-name (where a "name" is used as a simple description of one of the attributes of deity). It's origin, using borrowed words (as all languages do over time), has one explanation in this snippet that I find easier to digest...


Still another view is that "El Shaddai" is composed of the Hebrew relative pronoun She (Shin plus vowel segol), or, as in this case, as Sha (Shin plus vowel patach followed by a dagesh, cf. A Beginner's Handbook to Biblical Hebrew, John Marks and Virgil Roger, Nashville:Abingdon, 1978 "Relative Pronoun, p.60, par.45) The noun containing the dagesh is the Hebrew word Dai meaning "enough, sufficient, sufficiency" (cf. Ben Yehudah's Pocket English-Hebrew/Hebrew-English,New York, NY:Pocket Books, Simon & Schuster Inc.,1964,p. 44). This is the same word used in the Passover Haggadah, Dayeinu, which means "It would have been enough for us." The song Dayeinu celebrates the various miracles God performed while liberating the Hebrews from Egyptian servitude. It is understood as such by The Stone Edition of the Chumash (Torah) published by the Orthodox Jewish publisher Art Scroll, editors Rabbi Nosson Scherman/Rabbi Meir Zlotowitz, Brooklyn, New York: Mesorah Publications,Ltd. 2nd edition, 1994, cf. Exodus 6:3 commentary p. 319. The Talmud explains it this way, but says that "Shaddai" stands for "Mi she'Amar Dai L'olamo" - "He who said 'Enough' to His world." When God was creating the world, He stopped the process at a certain point, holding back creation from reaching its full completion, and thus the name embodies God's power to stop creation.

It is often paraphrased in English translations as "Almighty" although this is an interpretive element. The name then refers to the pre-Mosaic patriarchal understanding of deity as "God who is sufficient." God is sufficient, that is, to supply all of one's needs, and therefore by derivation "almighty". It may also be understood as an allusion to the singularity of deity, "El", as opposed to "Elohim" (plural), being sufficient or enough for the early patriarchs of Judaism. To this was latter added the Mosaic conception of the tetragrammaton YHWH, meaning a God who is sufficient in Himself, that is, a self-determined eternal Being qua Being, for whom limited descriptive names cannot apply. This may have been the meaning the Hebrew phrase "ehyeh asher ehyeh" (which translates roughly as "I will be that which I will be") and which is how God describes himself to Moses cf. Exodus 3:13-15. This phrase can be applied to the tetragrammaton YHWH, which can be understood as an anagram for the three States of Being: past, present and future, conjoined with the conjunctive Hebrew letter vav.

4) Due to some Assyrian writings and the original invasion of Canaan description from the Bible scholarly humanists tend to put YHWH as a war-god from the Hebrew "pantheon". I've really never heard of a volcano although I have heard of a mountain...

5) It was commonly known that the Hebrew people, as a whole, were MONOLATRISTIC not MONOTHEISTIC for a good portion of the Old Testament. Monolatry = the belief in a pantheon but one god is above the others or is your people's special god. Polytheism = belief in a pantheon and gods are worshipped on a by-situation basis or just loosely on the whole. Monotheism = there is only one god. This can be seen as some Hebrew worship taking up with Egyptian, Canaan, Sea-Peoples, and that God is constantly getting upset over it. The story of the Bible (as a whole, New and Old testaments) is how God takes one people and tries to take them under His wing so to speak so they can be an example to the world and them still turning away from Him again and again and again and again and again... until God eventually takes a part of them (Jesus' descendance through their people) to use as the end-game to bring humanity back to Him.


-------------
Edited for clarity, hopefully :/

lant3rn
8th September 11, 04:44 PM
The story of the Bible (as a whole, New and Old testaments) is how God takes one people and tries to take them under His wing so to speak so they can be an example to the world and them still turning away from Him again and again and again and again and again... until God eventually takes a part of them (Jesus' descendance through their people) to use as the end-game to bring humanity back to Him.



So you beleive this is more correct than arj's circle of life theology, why?

resolve
8th September 11, 04:59 PM
In Hinduism you try to reconnect with the godhead... living life after life trying erase a Karmic debt.

I find it funny Arj, that you would hate the idea of someone else's guilt/karma being passed down to you through birth but that it's ok for you to try and erase the karmic debt of your past lives (or if this is your first life to build up enough karma for the next one) so you can be reborn in a higher station in the next.

Imagine how the Judeo-Christian God must see humanity (at least, in part). Humanity could just be all parts of Adam... forever striving with God. If God exists outside of time... descent from 1 being and being part of that same being could very well be the same thing... all descendants of Adam, not the same, but still taking part of that one person. Sorry, it's hard to explain...

It would also correlate with the ancient idea of a redeemer that was prevalent in so many different cultures... basically the "redeemer" is a descendant who's existence justifies your own. That's why in Job he cries out after being accused "I know my redeemer yet lives" (he was speaking about one of his descendants that Satan had not killed in the story).

(And genetics have proven that there is one mitochondrial female ancestor for ALL of humanity alive on the globe today and 3 phenotype male ancestors for ALL of humanity today [and where were there 3 ancestors in the Bible? Ham, Shem, Japheth?]... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sons_of_Noah ... does this prove the Biblical account or anything to do with a young earth or creationism or anything of that nature? no, but it correlates strongly with that part of the story... something to think about at least that all those nations considered themselves descendants of those people or similarly named people)

lant3rn
8th September 11, 05:16 PM
Lol

just admit you're basing this descision on an emotional conncetion to the social norms you grew up with.

That would be way more intellectually honest.

resolve
8th September 11, 05:23 PM
I grew up in a christian household (my dad was an army chaplain), but was not a christian (well I'd say I was... but really only culturally) for many years until I was converted and gave my life to God.

I often look back at that moment, and see myself taking 1 of 3 paths I had laid out in my mind. 1 of those paths was definitely an agnostic/atheistic worldview and understanding. At one point I was almost convinced that it would be more rational (in my rather rudimentary childish and naive understanding of the world) until God showed up.

resolve
8th September 11, 05:29 PM
Lol

just admit you're basing this descision on an emotional connection to the social norms you grew up with.

That would be way more intellectually honest.

To say that emotion never has any tie to the decisions we make regarding the "big questions" (why are we here? etc) would be even more intellectually dishonest.

It's part of it. I accept that. But it's much more than emotion. We are more than just logical thinking programs as well... we feel we live we are so much more. Spirituality, at least in the way I've experienced it, touches on just about every human facet... and every human facet comes into our cognition and weighs in when we make worldview decisions.

resolve
8th September 11, 05:51 PM
I think we are getting really off track from the OP... and I helped... so sorry for that.

Here's something that kind of goes along with the "from nothing" or "God kickstarted it" argument and abiogenesis that was referred to in the OP. These guys kind of go over some of the same points, although they are talking about a book by Stephen Hawking and not Dawkins' work:

0wMyMmjPgLs

WHUh9S6Kg7Y

Fearless Ukemi
8th September 11, 06:50 PM
I agree this is always a point that staves me off. To say that my default position is sinner due to someone else's choice, and that somehow I am the one that has to fix this even though the flaw is left in place by God just irks me. In Hinduism the Original Sin was a choice made by each and every soul.


Adam and Eve, taken as a unit, is just a representation of every soul here.

Fearless Ukemi
8th September 11, 06:53 PM
It's more than that. A countable infinity is an infinite number that can be mapped onto the natural numbers. An uncountable infinity is an infinite number which can't be mapped onto the natural numbers.

Odd numbers, even number, integers and rational numbers are all a countable infinity.

Irrational numbers and real numbers are both an uncountable infinity.

Applying this to reality, we see that the universe is merely just a large collection of contingent objects. The only other possibility is that it has a definite beggining and end. If the contingecy stops, then you have a god. If not, then we are all just stuck in an inifnite loop.

Fearless Ukemi
8th September 11, 06:55 PM
That's about as close to what I was looking for that I'm probably likely to get. Deism is not a retarded position, the big bang is not a terribly satisfying creation story, intellectually or emotionally. I find ID offensive not on it's own merits, but that it functions as a trojan horse for a very specific theoretical designer.

I was trying to find a reasoned atheist who wasn't just "going through a phase"; who found not only that there might be a god, but that he knows in his heart that it's a specific one.

The Big Bang is fine, but it is not THE beginning. All the matter and energy that exists in the universe today existed prior to the Big Bang. Who knows if consciousness could have evolved prior to that event; it isn't impossible.

nihilist
8th September 11, 09:12 PM
Religious people are healthier and better adjusted than atheists. Full stop. Documented to fuck and back. Downs syndrome people seem pretty happy too. I suppose if you don't have to worry about feeling guilty for doing despicable shit because the invisible man forgives you then you would be heathier, sure.
Well adjusted? Are prisons filled with atheists?

It isn't God who makes religious people happier so you didn't really answer my question.

Ajamil
8th September 11, 09:32 PM
So you beleive this is more correct than arj's circle of life theology, why?Actually if you take out the social bias and replace a specific people with all souls, this is pretty much what I believe.

In Hinduism you try to reconnect with the godhead... living life after life trying erase a Karmic debt.

I find it funny Arj, that you would hate the idea of someone else's guilt/karma being passed down to you through birth but that it's ok for you to try and erase the karmic debt of your past lives (or if this is your first life to build up enough karma for the next one) so you can be reborn in a higher station in the next.Sort of. In bhakti-yoga it's more you ignore the karmic cycle and work outside of it. Seeing karma as something to get rid of still is an entrapment of thinking there is something outside of Krishna. Simply bringing oneself to a point of karmic nil allows merging into the Brahman effulgence, but for bhaktas this is an untenable and undesirable position. The Brahmajyoti is more akin to Catholocism's Purgatory - there is no action and thus a soul cannot engage in loving service, which to us is its natural state.

My specific qualm with Adam's tale is that it is not my soul according to literal Biblical interpretation. If you take it metaphorically that we are all making this choice, then it is by my actions I am here, not someone else's.

Humanity could just be all parts of Adam... forever striving with God.
In our theology all souls are eternally distinct. We are one with God in that we have similar qualities and in that our existence rests upon His, but Vaishnavism does not ascribe to the idea that souls are parts of a whole.

It would also correlate with the ancient idea of a redeemer that was prevalent in so many different cultures... basically the "redeemer" is a descendant who's existence justifies your own. That's why in Job he cries out after being accused "I know my redeemer yet lives" (he was speaking about one of his descendants that Satan had not killed in the story).
This would be in the realm of karma for me. There are karmic debts owed to the ancestors, and through good works one can redeem their souls to a better karmic position. It wouldn't affect one's relationship with the Godhead.

As for the single progenitor idea, this doesn't automatically include the idea of Original sin. There are ironically many single progenitors in the Vedas.

Adam and Eve, taken as a unit, is just a representation of every soul here.The story of the Garden of Eden - taken metaphorically - does not clash with the Vedic descriptions. There is even a similar analogy in Gita's 15th chapter about a spiritual and material tree.


Applying this to reality, we see that the universe is merely just a large collection of contingent objects. The only other possibility is that it has a definite beggining and end. If the contingecy stops, then you have a god. If not, then we are all just stuck in an inifnite loop.Whereby the loop then - to me - can be called an impersonal representation of the Godhead.

As for the videos, I think people get caught up too much on the word "law." I think it would be less confusing if instead of saying "because we have a law of gravity, the universe does not need a God to manifest," we could say, "it is possible to describe how the universe manifested solely through the understood actions of matter, and thus it is not necessary to introduce an outside mover."

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 02:23 AM
Applying this to reality, we see that the universe is merely just a large collection of contingent objects. The only other possibility is that it has a definite beggining and end. If the contingecy stops, then you have a god. If not, then we are all just stuck in an inifnite loop.

Actually quantum mechanics allows for particles to appear from nothing.

WLC's counter argument to this is "nu uh".

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 02:44 AM
We got 33 million demigods listed in our pantheon, and I'm sure Sri-Koala fits in with them just fine. I can respect power and believe a being is on some plane higher than my existence without saying it's Bhagavan. So far, however, it doesn't sound like this being's much more than an advanced yogi.

Jesus H Christ on a bike, you've got actual 100 ft tall Demi-gods living at the North pole firing moonbeams out their arses? Are there any photos?

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 03:01 AM
I think we are getting really off track from the OP... and I helped... so sorry for that.

Here's something that kind of goes along with the "from nothing" or "God kickstarted it" argument and abiogenesis that was referred to in the OP. These guys kind of go over some of the same points, although they are talking about a book by Stephen Hawking and not Dawkins' work:

0wMyMmjPgLs

WHUh9S6Kg7Y

I switched off before they started giving each other hand jobs.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
9th September 11, 05:38 AM
1) What theologians? Really, who? I'd like to read this, because in all my studies, I've never heard of an angry volcano god outside of Pacific Islander culture.

Really?

OMG (TM pending)!!

You are being serious arent you!

I'll give you a clue, you used a word in that quote that is derived from a non pacific island God (TM pending).....
...........
..........
.......
...
.

Found it yet?

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 05:42 AM
What is Vulcan?

I'll take stupid ontological arguments for $400 please.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
9th September 11, 05:47 AM
It's more than that. A countable infinity is an infinite number that can be mapped onto the natural numbers. An uncountable infinity is an infinite number which can't be mapped onto the natural numbers.

Odd numbers, even number, integers and rational numbers are all a countable infinity.

Irrational numbers and real numbers are both an uncountable infinity.


SSsssshhh trying to keep things simple init

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
9th September 11, 05:49 AM
What is Vulcan?

http://www.motifake.com/image/demotivational-poster/small/0909/youre-a-winner-winner-champ-special-demotivational-poster-1253919191.jpg

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 05:55 AM
Where did you get my old school photo?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
9th September 11, 05:57 AM
Your mom gave it me as a keepsake

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 06:02 AM
Someone needs to reference hitler so that this thread can finish.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
9th September 11, 06:12 AM
8I1mHW60nmU

Ajamil
9th September 11, 07:22 AM
Jesus H Christ on a bike, you've got actual 100 ft tall Demi-gods living at the North pole firing moonbeams out their arses? Are there any photos?Well not of those guys, but I did happen across some video of the God of Japan recently...(nsfw)

7G46YMyQjBY

Fearless Ukemi
9th September 11, 09:13 AM
Actually quantum mechanics allows for particles to appear from nothing.


Has this actually been observed spontaneously?

I'm still in calculus based physics ATM, maybe someday I'll get to differential equations and QM.

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 09:58 AM
Has this actually been observed spontaneously?

I'm still in calculus based physics ATM, maybe someday I'll get to differential equations and QM.


In modern physics, there is no such thing as "nothing." Even in a perfect vacuum, pairs of virtual particles are constantly being created and destroyed. The existence of these particles is no mathematical fiction. Though they cannot be directly observed, the effects they create are quite real. The assumption that they exist leads to predictions that have been confirmed by experiment to a high degree of accuracy. (Morris 1990: 25)

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
9th September 11, 10:14 AM
It should be clarified that the virual particle model is just that...a model

Vieux Normand
9th September 11, 10:19 AM
So how is this different than other polytheistic philosophies? Is there something vital I missed that would make you deny the similarities between Ur-Law and Brahman?


Seeing as I didn't even mention Brahman, how do you figure that I denied any similarities between Ur-Law and Brahman?

What I was contrasting involved original European cosmologies (gods stand before an unfathomable Law and are subject to fate) versus those of mid-eastern origins (an unfathomable--but still oft-'described'--god is behind the Law, pulling the strings of fate).

So....where did I refer to Brahman?

Cullion
9th September 11, 10:26 AM
It should be clarified that the virual particle model is just that...a model

And it usually refers to matter-energy conversion (i.e. photons into particle pairs and back).

Besides, none of this is relevant to Deism or Theism. You can't logically infer the existence of an intelligent creator by saying 'well there must have been something before the big bang'.

Craigypooh
9th September 11, 10:32 AM
And it usually refers to matter-energy conversion (i.e. photons into particle pairs and back).

Besides, none of this is relevant to Deism or Theism. You can't logically infer the existence of an intelligent creator by saying 'well there must have been something before the big bang'.

WLC begs to differ.

Ajamil
9th September 11, 12:00 PM
Seeing as I didn't even mention Brahman, how do you figure that I denied any similarities between Ur-Law and Brahman?

What I was contrasting involved original European cosmologies (gods stand before an unfathomable Law and are subject to fate) versus those of mid-eastern origins (an unfathomable--but still oft-'described'--god is behind the Law, pulling the strings of fate).

So....where did I refer to Brahman?You didn't, but you also don't give an alternative from the two established ideas of an impersonal law/force directing everything, and a personal being directing everything. So why is it so important to bring up?

Vieux Normand
9th September 11, 10:02 PM
You didn't, but you also don't give an alternative from the two established ideas of an impersonal law/force directing everything, and a personal being directing everything. So why is it so important to bring up?

You had asked for an example of world views other than the specific ones being debated. I provided one.

Before that point, the two views being debated appeared to be mostly monotheism versus monotheism-minus-deity atheism. I provided an example of a cosmology that was neither, a theology in which deities, while powerful in their way, are not supreme.

Nobody--you included--asked me to provide an 'alternative' to either a monotheist's deity or and an 'impersonal force'.

Your reading comprehension is usually far better than this. What's going on?

Ajamil
9th September 11, 11:42 PM
That's the gentlest insult I've ever seen you give. I suppose I could ask the same thing.

I'm sorry if I misunderstood, but I don't see much of a difference between the theology you presented and the monotheism-minus-deity: both are subjected to impersonal universal laws. It's just that yours adds in beings that are more powerful than humanity, the notion of which which I don't think anyone here would say science rejects.

For instance on the idea of the creation of the universe - does this cosmology describe something besides the universe being created through force of will or being created through an as yet unknown interaction of matter?

Vieux Normand
10th September 11, 09:31 AM
That's the gentlest insult I've ever seen you give.

You do know the difference between an insult and an expression of concern...right?


I don't see much of a difference between the theology you presented and the monotheism-minus-deity: both are subjected to impersonal universal laws.

Kindly reread post # 189.

UrLaw is not described as "impersonal". UrLaw is described as being beyond description and not subject to commonly-debated theological dichotomies such as "personal-versus-impersonal" or "immanent-versus-transcendent". The closest comparable concept from any other tradition might be the Tao.


For instance on the idea of the creation of the universe - does this cosmology describe something besides the universe being created through force of will or being created through an as yet unknown interaction of matter?

It has elements of both. Again, be careful with the dichotomies: you've now referred to creation in terms of "matter-versus-will." This assumes the spiritual as mutually-exclusive from the material. Consult Heisenberg--and stray a bit into quantum physics--and you might find the line between these is not as clear as DesCartes and his ilk would have had us believe.

Cullion
10th September 11, 10:13 AM
Did you play a lot of Donjons et Dragons as a youngster, Vieux?

All this talk of demigods and viking mysticism has me wondering.

nihilist
10th September 11, 11:13 AM
Did you play a lot of Donjons et Dragons as a youngster, Vieux?

All this talk of demigods and viking mysticism has me wondering.

Thanks for 'expressing your concern'.

Vieux Normand
10th September 11, 12:13 PM
Did you play a lot of Donjons et Dragons as a youngster, Vieux?

No(n). Dee-en-dee was after my time. It was standard card games, mostly.


All this talk of demigods and viking mysticism has me wondering.

Must have been all the euker and pochre.

EDIT: Either that, or it was all the fanciful brand names I grew up with. There's nothing to set the thud a-blunder like having a "Report"-brand beer along with one's bowl of "Attack" soup and "Rescue" salad, then going to "Flat Park" in a "File" car.

Ajamil
10th September 11, 05:34 PM
UrLaw is not described as "impersonal". UrLaw is described as being beyond description and not subject to commonly-debated theological dichotomies such as "personal-versus-impersonal" or "immanent-versus-transcendent". The closest comparable concept from any other tradition might be the Tao.So if you can't describe it, why bring it up? So far it seems this third alternative is solely known as being "not the other two."


It has elements of both. Again, be careful with the dichotomies: you've now referred to creation in terms of "matter-versus-will." This assumes the spiritual as mutually-exclusive from the material. Consult Heisenberg--and stray a bit into quantum physics--and you might find the line between these is not as clear as DesCartes and his ilk would have had us believe.Acintya-bedabeda-tattva: incomprehensible, simultaneous oneness and difference. Vaishnavas recognize that there is no separation between the spiritual and material energies, and yet they are distinct. It is our faulty perception that creates a world of labels and dichotomies.

Still, I don't see how this presents us with a third alternative, or even a clear description of some hybrid theory.

OZZ
10th September 11, 06:36 PM
Did you play a lot of Donjons et Dragons as a youngster, Vieux?

All this talk of demigods and viking mysticism has me wondering.

Actually, playing D&D was what got me interested in exploring the various pantheons and reading tales of Greek Heroes and Norse Mythology..I credit that game with piquing my interest.
Many a high school class was skipped to play that game.

Vieux Normand
10th September 11, 07:13 PM
So if you can't describe it, why bring it up? So far it seems this third alternative is solely known as being "not the other two."

Not semitic-style monotheism and not the mechanistic universe commonly described by detractors of said monotheism. What I described is indeed different from these, and there are many other world traditions which resemble none of the above. What is it you're not getting about this?


Acintya-bedabeda-tattva: incomprehensible, simultaneous oneness and difference. Vaishnavas recognize that there is no separation between the spiritual and material energies, and yet they are distinct. It is our faulty perception that creates a world of labels and dichotomies.

Still, I don't see how this presents us with a third alternative, or even a clear description of some hybrid theory.

How does your "Acetaminophine-whatever" identify with either of the two worldviews (mid-eastern-origined monotheism and mechanistic-universe atheism) which dominated the thread...or are you one of these "all-religions-are-one" types who try glossing over the considerable differences in the many cosmologies and theologies found worldwide?

Is it "all one" to you, or some such thing?

'Cause if it is, why do some religions have standing orders for their adherents to get rid of the other faiths (or lack thereof)? If "it's all One", why bother to require an attempt at this?

Ajamil
10th September 11, 09:35 PM
Not semitic-style monotheism and not the mechanistic universe commonly described by detractors of said monotheism. What I described is indeed different from these, and there are many other world traditions which resemble non of the above. What is it you're not getting about this?What it's bringing to the table as a cosmology. I don't see much difference between a pantheon still subject to an undefinable law, and a group of powerful extraterrestrials who are subject to the physical laws. I could see animism perhaps bringing a third option - the universal laws themselves have will.


How does your "Acetaminophine-whatever" identify with either of the two worldviews (mid-eastern-origined monotheism and mechanistic-universe atheism) which dominated the thread...It's both, and neither. Kind of like a large business with a single CEO and owner - the owner created the business, and has the power to affect any part of it she wishes, yet she rarely does and instead lets the business run on policy.


or are you one of these "all-religions-are-one" types who try glossing over the considerable differences in the many cosmologies and theologies found worldwide?

Is it "all one" to you, or some such thing?

'Cause if it is, why do some religions have standing orders for their adherents to get rid of the other faiths (or lack thereof)? If "it's all One", why bother to require an attempt at this?

BG 4.7 (http://vedabase.net/bg/4/7/en): Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata (http://vedabase.net/b/bharata), and a predominant rise of irreligion — at that time I descend Myself.BG 4.8 (http://vedabase.net/bg/4/8/en): To deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to reestablish the principles of religion, I Myself appear, millennium after millennium.
I believe all religions have the same source. I believe what is espoused in each religion is specific towards what the people of that time and place could assimilate. I believe that due to ego and differences in worship different religions have often decried the others as being false and thus an affront to their own way.

There's a nice parable given about this where a father asks his two sons to massage his legs (lol Hindus), and while doing so one son declares that he is making their father feel the best. The other son says he is doing better. They begin arguing, and eventually striking the leg that the other son is massaging.

Often times great bhakti-yogis are called paramahansa (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paramahamsa) because of the idea that swans are able to separate milk and water after they are mixed, analogously great yogis are able to take anything and separate the truth from the illusion. Thus these souls delight in any spiritual pursuit, and would have no problem with any religious tradition - encouraging the truths found within and trying to move it's adherents away from their illusions. The characteristics of these great souls are found in any religion's historical people of note.

There's a great essay by Bhaktivinode Thakur called "How to worship outside your sect," that basically lays the foundation for my interfaith ideals. I've been trying to find it online for years. Lemme give another stab at it. (LOL when the only hit on Google is me saying I need to find this essay in the Jarnaxa Scale thread.)

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
11th September 11, 08:43 AM
Ultimately all your pantheons and hierachies are illusionary phantasms created by your nervous system to explain something beyond your ken.

IMO here are 2 credible null hypotheses,

1) Purely materalistic-mechanical universe where consciousness is an entropic inevitability.

2) That Universe is a conscious being and is curious about what it is, hence the development of a sensory apparatus (life) of which we are part.

Craigypooh
11th September 11, 10:11 AM
Hypotheses are only useful if they can be tested.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
11th September 11, 11:18 AM
They can both be tested that's why I mentioned them. In my experience of reality those two are the only two that hold any water.

Craigypooh
11th September 11, 11:53 AM
I'm interested to know how.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
11th September 11, 12:08 PM
Hypothesis (1) can be tested via the scientifc method.

Hypothesis (2) can be tested by exploring your own (and to some extent other people's) consciousness.

My conclusion from (1); to date I havent observed anything that disobeys the second law of thermodynamics.

My conclusion from (2); to date panthiesm fits the data better than any other model of reality.

One could be truer than the other or both may hold true or neither may be true or there may be some overlap or not etc.......

All models are open to re-evaluation based on new data.

Although I will admit their is one caveat for (2) and that for me it is only a valid hypothesis IFF there is a meaning to ascertained from the existence of conciousness. Otherwise my default is (1)

Ajamil
11th September 11, 12:45 PM
In order to test hypothesis 1, wouldn't you need to create a completely isolated system in order to see if consciousness arises from it's entropic progression? I don't even know how you would test number 2. Exploring other people's consciousness doesn't tell me whether or not all of existence is conscious.

Vieux Normand
11th September 11, 01:11 PM
What it's bringing to the table as a cosmology. I don't see much difference between a pantheon still subject to an undefinable law, and a group of powerful extraterrestrials who are subject to the physical laws. I could see animism perhaps bringing a third option - the universal laws themselves have will.

Read the above. Are you really proposing "physical" as a synonym for "undefinable"? It looks as though you are. Between these lies a gulf nearly as wide as that between our two viewpoints.


It's both, and neither. Kind of like a large business with a single CEO and owner - the owner created the business, and has the power to affect any part of it she wishes, yet she rarely does and instead lets the business run on policy.

You are, therefore, positing a single (as opposed to multiple) chief deity who is personal (rather than impersonal) in a universe (as opposed to a multiverse) created and maintained by this personal deity. Basically, you are either monotheist or monentheist. You have defined and described your deity, which means that--for you--the creative force, of the universe you believe in, is both definable and describable. Not the same as angry li'l YHWH, but closer to that than to either Tao or UrLaw.


I believe all religions have the same source. I believe what is espoused in each religion is specific towards what the people of that time and place could assimilate. I believe that due to ego and differences in worship different religions have often decried the others as being false and thus an affront to their own way.

When humans migrated to diverse regions of the planet, they had to develop and codify knowledge and practices that would help them to survive each region's particular challenges (climate, terrain and so on). Culture can thus arguably be described as a set of interactions between a people and the land that forged that people.

Beliefs and rites would develop as part of any given cultures in order to aid in committing to memory the various practices that help a people survive and thrive in a given environment. These would be considered an integral part of a tribe's culture and not separate from it. If one were to ask an early-Roman-Era celt what the "name of his faith" is, he wouldn't have a separate name like "celtism" or some such--he'd simply say: "These are our ways." Only when some religions developed their own inertia did separate faith-names ending with "-ism" or "-anity" appear in the language. Even names given to surviving tribal folkways, such as "Shinto" or "Hinduism", were bestowed more as terms of convenience for recent-era outsiders accustomed to such catch-all terms.

The nature and outlook of each tribal tradition would reflect the land of its birth. Rites in Mongolia traditionally reflect a steppe-equestrian culture, as opposed to the maritime-related cultures of Pacific Islanders. Likewise, there are no frost-giants in Zulu tradition whereas they exist in Norse myths--for obvious reasons. If one's people inhabit a flat desert landscape under a mostly-uniform sky, where the only animals you see most of the time are dull-eyed domesticated livestock, then a monotheistic faith in which you are exhorted to see yourself as "above all other earthly life" is a logical result. If your tribe lives in a land of winter mountainous forests full of wildlife, then your people's indigenous ways will reflect a landscape and life in which one is a part, but not some kind of divinely-mandated "master-on-Earth".

The business of some religions calling each other "false and an affront" is only found in certain faiths. Read Tacitus: pre-christian Romans didn't try to convert peoples to their own gods--to do so would have seemed to them to be somewhat like trying to change another's DNA to make them join your tribe. Tacitus-era Romans listed deistic parallels (Woden was identified with Mercury, for instance, as they corresponded to similar natural forces and qualities). Even Genghis Khan left conquered people's religions well enough alone. In Japan, Buddhism and Shinto have co-existed quite happily for most of that country's history. Christianity was given the boot because--among other reasons--it attempted to replace the native religion, not co-exist with it as did Buddhism.

Some faiths have gone beyond the lands which spawned them and developed their own inertia (their own vested bureaucracies and so on). These "universalist" (as opposed to tribal) faiths--a historically-recent phenomenon when compared to the total time our species has existed--are the ones which cannot abide religions other than their own. Christianity and Islam are two of the more prominent examples of this.

"It is all one" may be your interpretation of history. It is not mine--therefore, it is NOT "all one".

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
11th September 11, 01:33 PM
In order to test hypothesis 1, wouldn't you need to create a completely isolated system in order to see if consciousness arises from it's entropic progression? I don't even know how you would test number 2. Exploring other people's consciousness doesn't tell me whether or not all of existence is conscious.

Re: (1) As far as science has demostrated it would appear that this hypothesis is the most robust to date. We live in a universe that obeys the laws of thermodynamics (rememebr NOBODY has broken these emprically formulated laws that we know about) consciousness has arisen, Null hypothesis is therefore that consciousness is a consequence of entropy. Not very tricky Aj now was it?

Re: (2) To explore consciousness you have to start with your own not somebody elses. That's why I said 'other people's to some extent'. You follow?

Craigypooh
11th September 11, 01:57 PM
I'm on board with (1), but (2) sounds a little vague. What should I expect to see when I explore my consciousness?

Ajamil
11th September 11, 02:20 PM
Read the above. Are you really proposing "physical" as a synonym for "undefinable"?In their time? Yes. In our time the undefinable law is something other than the physical laws we have now. In the future - assuming a similar rate of knowledge increase - it will be something else. It's still a force that isn't understood and can't be related to.


You are, therefore, positing a single (as opposed to multiple) chief deityNo. Krishna is God. Balarama is God. Aniruddha and Hayagriva and Kurma and Radha and Vishnu and Rama and Nrisingha and uncountable more are God. They are not the same person, but they are all non-different.

who is personal (rather than impersonal)At times. The concept of all-inclusiveness is more important than the concept of creator. God is both personal and impersonal. It is you who is getting caught in dichotomies, now.

in a universe (as opposed to a multiverse)No, multiverse is a much closer concept to my theology.

created and maintained by this personal deity.No. Garbhadoksayi Vishnu (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garbhodaksayi_Vishnu) does that. He is also God.

Basically, you are either monotheist or monentheist.Not certain what monentheist means - Google provides no results. There was a term used earlier in the thread I liked - monolatrism. I would consider myself either that or henotheistic.

You have defined and described your deity, which means that--for you--the creative force, of the universe you believe in, is both definable and describable. Not the same as angry li'l YHWH, but closer to that than to either Tao or UrLaw.I'd hardly say I've defined and described the Godhead. I've badly relayed the information given to us by Krishna in the Gita. I can give top-down answers, and I can give simplistic analogies that make sense to me, but the Godhead is infinite and logically contradictory - I do not think it is ultimately understandable at all.


If one were to ask an early-Roman-Era celt what the "name of his faith" is, he wouldn't have a separate name like "celtism" or some such--he'd simply say: "These are our ways."But who would ask such a question in that era? They would ask, "Who do you worship and how?" That I would imagine to be an easy answer.


The business of some religions calling each other "false and an affront" is only found in certain faiths. Read Tacitus: pre-christian Romans didn't try to convert peoples to their own gods--to do so would have seemed to them to be somewhat like trying to change another's DNA to make them join your tribe.And yet when a faith came whose method was to convert others, they reacted to this false path very violently. Especially taking into consideration the lack of separation between culture and religion the battles between cultures could in one sense all be seen as battles over different religions. They wouldn't have it that way, but they would see these people as dressing different, acting different, worshiping different, thinking different and thus an affront to the one, true Roman way. The fact that after conquering they left them alone to continue their culture (as long as they paid) has parallels in Islam.


Some faiths have gone beyond the lands which spawned them and developed their own inertia (their own vested bureaucracies and so on). These "universalist" (as opposed to tribal) faiths--a historically-recent phenomenon when compared to the total time our species has existed--are the ones which cannot abide religions other than their own. Christianity and Islam are two of the more prominent examples of this.These arise because cultures are merging and co-existing on a much larger scale than in history. Just because official stances and documents say there was co-existence (like in the current US) does not mean there weren't clashes wherever different worldviews came together (like in the current US). I would say the fact that some areas had and still have different religions co-existing is more due to the specific types of religions and whether or not they filled the same of different niches in humanity.

"It is all one" may be your interpretation of history. It is not mine--therefore, it is NOT "all one".You hold a fan, and I hold a rope, therefore we cannot possibly be grabbing the same elephant.

Null hypothesis is therefore that consciousness is a consequence of entropy. Not very tricky Aj now was it?Consequence is very different than inevitable which is what you first said.

To explore consciousness you have to start with your own not somebody elses.This assumes my consciousness is the same as another's. How would I be able to say that unless I studied another's consciousness first? How does this help us understand whether the whole of creation is conscious?

Vieux Normand
11th September 11, 05:00 PM
In their time? Yes. In our time the undefinable law is something other than the physical laws we have now. In the future - assuming a similar rate of knowledge increase...

Similar to what?


...it will be something else.

It "will". Not "might"--but "will".

Really? Where's this crystal ball of yours, One Who Can See The Future?

Or is this some kind of statement of faith-and-hope-whatever? We have barely scratched the surface of the surface--ask any astrophysicist--but you think we will figure out the totality?


It's still a force that isn't understood and can't be related to.

Yeah, but one day we will...right? On what, exactly, do you base this assertion?


No. Krishna is God. Balarama is God. Aniruddha and Hayagriva and Kurma and Radha and Vishnu and Rama and Nrisingha and uncountable more are God. They are not the same person, but they are all non-different.

Basically, trinity-plus. Pass the holy water. Moving right along...


At times. The concept of all-inclusiveness is more important than the concept of creator. God is both personal and impersonal. It is you who is getting caught in dichotomies, now.

You cited the example of a single CEO creating a universe and stepping in to run things occasionally. A CEO is, by definition, a person--neither "impersonal" nor "beyond personal-versus-impersonal". One CEO is in charge, not several. That's the example you gave, these are the terms you used, how does my quoting them back to you make any dichotomies therein "mine"?


No, multiverse is a much closer concept to my theology.

What...am I supposed to know this telepathically or something? YOU fucking wrote "universe". If you cannot use language to relate ideas clearly, don't go "correcting" anyone who responds to what you actually wrote.


I'd hardly say I've defined and described the Godhead.

Oh, you do about as good a job as any other monotheist. First they say their god is "beyond any description"...then they turn right around and try giving attributes to their "indescribable" deity. "Beyond words or concepts", they say...and then what do they do in the very same Holy Tome? That's right: bla-bla-bla about that which is beyond words and concepts. Do any of them, I wonder, see the hypocrisy in this?


They would ask, "Who do you worship and how?"

Pre-christian Romans did just that. Read Tacitus. They'd ask the Germans, get names of their gods, and then they'd ask for attributes of these personified forces of nature. When they had enough information, the Romans equated those gods with seemingly-similar gods of their own pantheon. "Their Woden is our Mercury, their Tiw is our Mars" (what they did write) is far different from saying "their gods are false, our gods are true" (which many today seem to think as the norm for "religious thinking"...not realizing that such exclusivism is a relatively-recent phenomenon).


And yet when a faith came whose method was to convert others, they reacted to this false path very violently.

Might want to bone up on your history. Even in Europe, christian missionaries behaved themselves until they felt they had a chance to oust the native gods. Those people who held troth in the latter had no problem "absorbing" another deity into their pantheon for politeness' sake (somewhat like Hindus have been known to do, which is why I'm surprised at what you wrote there). It is the newcomers who, when they had the chance, replaced the inclusive with the exclusionary. Read up on why Yule was replaced by "christmas", even though jizzus wasn't born anywhere near Winter Solstice time. Ditto Easter, where the resurrection of all life in springtime was gradually replaced by the supposed resurrection of one individual. If you know how cuckoo birds reproduce, you'll get some idea of the initial methods used to replace native folkways in Europe. Otherwise, it's Charlemagne and "Saint" Olaf and the bloody wars of conversion they waged.


Especially taking into consideration the lack of separation between culture and religion the battles between cultures could in one sense all be seen as battles over different religions. They wouldn't have it that way, but they would see these people as dressing different, acting different, worshiping different, thinking different and thus an affront to the one, true Roman way.

You do know the difference--don't you?--between empire-building for material and territorial gain...and holy wars? Jihadist/crusader religious fanaticism is a feature of a specific culture (deuteronomist middle-eastern monotheism) which didn't appear anywhere on any sizeable scale outside the middle-east until centuries after the time of jizzus. Before then, wars were fought for different reasons. Crusader/jihadist fanaticism simply added another reason.


The fact that after conquering they left them alone to continue their culture (as long as they paid) has parallels in Islam.

Romans conquered celts, some Africans, some fellow-mediterraneans and some mid-easterns. I'm from a country that had been conquered by the Romans before my ancestors got there. The culture was Romanised and they still speak a debased form of Latin.


These arise because cultures are merging and co-existing on a much larger scale than in history.

The US? Okay, I'll bite: what happened in the Black Hills was an example of "merging and coexisting"?


Just because official stances and documents say there was co-existence (like in the current US) does not mean there weren't clashes wherever different worldviews came together (like in the current US).

Let's stay in the Black Hills, shall we? So...what occurred there was a "clash of world views"? Not "you have land with gold on it; we'll write treaties with you to get you off your guard--and then drive you off your land by force"? Okay, I suppose that could be massaged into a "clash of world views" rather than a simple land-grab at the point of many guns.


I would say the fact that some areas had and still have different religions co-existing is more due to the specific types of religions and whether or not they filled the same of different niches in humanity.

Roman-age Germans and neighbouring celts had different names for very similar figures in their pantheons. They were sometimes neighbourly, trade-wise, and sometimes not--but when they fought, it wasn't because one side was, in any way, trying to "convert" the other. Every tribe had its own ways.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th September 11, 03:10 AM
What should I expect to see when I explore my consciousness?

LOL how the fuck should I know?

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th September 11, 03:18 AM
Consequence is very different than inevitable which is what you first said.

Sorry - inevitable consequence.


This assumes my consciousness is the same as another's.

No it doesnt. I never said anything along those lines. Your inference is an artifact of your own consciousness.

Craigypooh
12th September 11, 04:34 AM
LOL how the fuck should I know?

You need to make falsifiable predictions in order to test your hypothesis. Otherwise your wasting your time coming up with the hypothesis.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th September 11, 05:17 AM
You need to make falsifiable predictions in order to test your hypothesis. Otherwise your wasting your time coming up with the hypothesis.

You experiment with your own consciouness and come up with your own. For me I have (and still do) done a number of experiments with my own consciousness and drawn my own conclusions.

I am satisfied that either (1) or (2) could be true.

An example of testing hypothesis 2 then. This hypothesis rests on a number of assumptions most notably that there exists a higher level of intelligence questing for knowlege about itself. So I used a technique common to many different cultures to contact 'the others' (whatever you wish to call them) trance inducing dance under the influence of powerful psychedelics.

Conclusions, something really out of the ordinary happened, the impression that something truely vast and timeless enetered my consciousness lingered for quite some time after the each of the events.

Possible explainations,
- drug, excercise, sleep deprivation induced hallucination (orhodox psychiatiric)
- a demon tried to possess me (Catholic-Orthodox)
- a saint revealed themseves to me (also Catholic-Orthodox)
- Holy Spirit communed with me (Pentacostal)
- communication with my Holy Guardian Angel (Thelemic-Golden Dawn)
- Shiva's eye opened and devoured by ego (Hindu)
- Legba went for a ride (Voudoun)
- Eris is fucking with my mind (Discordian-Erisian)
- Universe had a nose around one of its sense organs (me)
- none of the above (unknown)

You make your own mind up. Me the second to last one fits better than the rest IFF there is meaning to be gained from conciousness. It explains alot of unresolved philosophical debates and opens up quite a few others.

Craigypooh
12th September 11, 05:59 AM
So use drugs and see if anything odd happens and/or I feel a bit strange?

Cullion
12th September 11, 06:36 AM
In your case Craig, that's probably a bad idea.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th September 11, 06:49 AM
So use drugs and see if anything odd happens and/or I feel a bit strange?

No you dont have to do anything. Its your call, not mine. I'm not being prescriptive. You asked me how I came to the conclusions I've come to. I gave you one example of a series of experiments I did on myself, one that was easy to explain.

You are welcome to stay within the well defined borders of your own reality if that makes you happy.

¦:¬ )

Craigypooh
12th September 11, 06:59 AM
No you dont have to do anything. Its your call, not mine. I'm not being prescriptive. You asked me how I came to the conclusions I've come to. I gave you one example of a series of experiments I did on myself, one that was easy to explain.

You are welcome to stay within the well defined borders of your own reality if that makes you happy.

¦:¬ )

No I asked how you proposed testing your hypothesis. This involves proposing falsifiable predictions. Otherwise it's just a belief, along with all the other non-falsifiable beliefs I could come up with. Such as: God created the world last week, but in such away as to fool everyone into thinking it was billions of years old.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th September 11, 07:00 AM
So use drugs and see if anything odd happens and/or I feel a bit strange?

PS...

Adj. 1. glib - marked by lack of intellectual depth; "glib generalizations"; "a glib response to a complex question"
superficial - concerned with or comprehending only what is apparent or obvious; not deep or penetrating emotionally or intellectually; "superficial similarities"; "a superficial mind"; "his thinking was superficial and fuzzy"; "superficial knowledge"; "the superficial report didn't give the true picture"; "only superficial differences"

Craigypooh
12th September 11, 07:04 AM
PS...

Adj. 1. glib - marked by lack of intellectual depth; "glib generalizations"; "a glib response to a complex question"
superficial - concerned with or comprehending only what is apparent or obvious; not deep or penetrating emotionally or intellectually; "superficial similarities"; "a superficial mind"; "his thinking was superficial and fuzzy"; "superficial knowledge"; "the superficial report didn't give the true picture"; "only superficial differences"

You think your "experiment" had intellectual depth. LOL.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th September 11, 07:11 AM
No I asked how you proposed testing your hypothesis. This involves proposing falsifiable predictions. Otherwise it's just a belief along with all the other non-falsifiable beliefs I could come up with. Such as God created the world last week, but in such away as to fool everyone into thinking it was billions of years old.

Jeez do actually read or do you just parse enough information to make a glib one liner retort?

So in an effort to determine if God(s) (TM(s) pending) or spirits or whatever you want to call them, actually exist. I have spent years replicating excercise from all over the place that have been reported to give you access to the divine/other/spirite world. On my behalf my agnostic/skeptical stance constructing, enetring and evaluating these experiences has been invaluable.

Given my initial null hypothesis that these things do not exist I have reason to put forth an alternative null hypothesis for panthieism.

My personal experiences with my consciousness justify this hypothesis otherwise I wouldnt bother telling you about it.

The experiences have been proven to my satisfaction to be repeatable. What conclusions you draw from such experimentation is invariably subjective.