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Discussion in 'Religion and Lighthearted Discussion' started by weswelker#83, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. weswelker#83

    weswelker#83 Rookie

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  2. Lifer

    Lifer Banned

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    I agree, faith in Christianity, or any "religion" is indeed ridiculous. Faith in Jesus Christ is what matters.
  3. Born_a_Patriot

    Born_a_Patriot PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I have faith in God. Jesus is no more real to me than Santa Claus.
  4. Lifer

    Lifer Banned

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    Why is it when people who dont believe in Jesus, they call it ridiculous or question the persons intelligence. Athiests are free to believe what they want, as do people who believe in God but not Jesus, as do Jews, as do Muslims, but you very rarely hear a Christian calling those people stupid or ridiculous.

    If people are on such strong footing with their beliefs, why the need to ridicule or to spend more time tearing down a belief instead of promoting their own?

    Believe what you want, but id be more apt to consider your position if you told me something positive about why you believe what you do instead of whats so stupid about mine.

    And by the way, I tell my Christian friends the same thing, maybe i dont do it perfectly, but now I try and focus on the Good news of Jesus Christ rather than telling others the Bad News of their ways.

    But maybe im assuming too much. Perhaps Wes will post his personal testimony of how athiesm has changed his life. Then it wont be just a person slamming something, it would be positive exchange of sincere beliefs and ideas.
  5. weswelker#83

    weswelker#83 Rookie

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    The Guardian article was very informative.
    It was interesting as to why he gave up his faith; and the repercussions of that decision were very sad, but predictable.
    It was also interesting to see how his work dismissed a major theory on linguistics by a leading academic, and how that academic would not concede that he may be wrong.

    This explores faith on so many levels: the faith of the academic in his own work, the faith that the missionary lost, not to mention the faith of his wife that couldn't cope with conflict.

    There is even a stab at consumerism, which now threatens tribal life. And the question as to who has the more advanced lifestyle.

  6. Born_a_Patriot

    Born_a_Patriot PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I never questioned your intelligence, but perhaps you were talking in general. I have no problem with people believing what they want to believe.

    Christ doesn’t make sense to me. But we can live that discussion for another thread. If you start one up on why you believe in Christ I will tell you why I don’t.
  7. Synovia

    Synovia Rookie

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    He never slammed you or questioned your intelligence. He said he didn't believe.


    You seem to take a lot of things personally that aren't aimed at you.
  8. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Atheists don't "believe" anything. They don't "believe" in faith. To assign generalizations to a group of people whose only common attribute is that they lack a belief in the supernatural is fallacious.

    I don't need "atheism to change my life." I don't look for answers and pick them based on which one makes me the happiest. I care only about the truth.

    Our society is inundated with religious propaganda. The only "positive" that can be touted about that is the intellectual freedom that comes with rejecting things just because others say they are so.

    We don't have to play your game. We aren't a competing sect or religion. The christian persecution complex is quite entertaining though.
  9. Lifer

    Lifer Banned

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    I was speaking in general, these threads do not live in a vacuum. Maybe he can speak for himself.

    anyway, im so glad these threads have been brought back to life. nothing like going over stuff talked about before thanksgiving.
  10. Lifer

    Lifer Banned

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    its a good thing you never "assign generalizations to a group of people", Wildo :rolleyes:
  11. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    First, when have I? Second, I didn't say in general, assigning attributes to a general group is fallacious, I said it's fallacious for atheists because they lack dogma, churches, tradition or any other common trait beyond simply not believing in the supernatural.
  12. OldEngland

    OldEngland Rookie

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    I don't believe in the supernatural. Naturalism does not eliminate the possibility that Life as an entity has a "soul" that guides it's evolution. It just suggests we haven't found it yet.

    I was naturalist before I came to Christ. The mechanisms that Christ teaches work!!! Changing the psychology of a man to one who lives and works a better more selfless life via forgiveness and a clean state of mind, by eliminating the limitations of prior prejudice from bad experiences. I have trouble understanding why so many people cannot link these two phenomena together.

    When someone's personality and beliefs change as dramatically as this, can this not be explained by scientific means?

    If not. Why not?
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2009
  13. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Altruism as an evolutionary function? You don't say...

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4766490.stm

    And what does that mean "cannot be explained by scientific means?" That science cannot yet answer it? Just because science hasn't answered it YET does not make a superstitious belief true. Science hasn't answered a great many things, and maybe it never will, are they all automatically supernatural? Totally flawed logic there.

    Doing good things for "forgiveness" or the threat of hell is a poor reason to do good things. Just because someone does good things for those reasons doesn't make them real. I might give all my money to the poor because someone put a gun to my head or because I think if I don't the monsters under my bed will kill me.

    And belief in the "soul" or "God" is a supernatural belief:

    Last edited: Jan 30, 2009
  14. OldEngland

    OldEngland Rookie

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    Great find. I hadn’t seen this. Blows the humans are the only ones with the “God hole” in their soul theory out of the water somewhat.

    Fits with the chromosome 2 in humans being a combination of apes chromosome 2 and 3 theory as well. (common ancestor, not saying altruism is located on Chromosome 2)

    No of course not, when we are clever enough we will find out.....
    IMHO and flawed logic “supernatural” are things that are considered possibly natural but we able been able to reason how/why they occur yet. Include God, ghosts etc if you want, some maybe be right, others maybe not. I can live with that.

    Plato believed in the soul. Evolution and “life as an entity” to me seems to have a charmed life, full of lucky coincidences and random chance gone exactly right. I would describe this guidance as a force or "soul of nature", but my words are obviously inadequate to describe this.

    Plus you’ve completely missed the point of altruism. Altruism is doing things for no reward (not because of a threat). Altruism is the highest thing in the universe. Try it, go and be nice to a complete stranger (especially someone you would usually consider too low to even speak to) for no reason whatsoever, then leave quietly. Do it a couple of times, give a small amount of your time and see what happens. For no reason whatsoever other than to make someone else happy.

    I agree with your premise though, believe in God so I’m not “burnt in hell for eternity” is not a good reason to believe. Eventually you don't need the little temptations that once seemed so important to you.
  15. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    But that's just it, the luck of you personally being here against all odds requires astonishment and recognition, not divine interference. As for evolution, it's neither lucky coincidences nor random chance; it's a random variable (genetic mutation) acting in concert with a non-random filter (natural selection). This dichotomy between chance v. God is a false choice that people can't seem to understand because they see he world through the prism of religion and assume it must be either completely random or have purpose. That is not the case.

    Even if we can't explain things currently, or may never be able to, their has to atleast be evidence for it. I agree that to some, things we can't explain seem supernatural when they first see them, or atleast that's the attribute they assign to it, such as lightning or fire, but we do know they exist. It's not that I've seen it and can't explain it yet, it's that I have never seen evidence of God or ghosts at all and don't believe they exist. Same with Alien UFOs which is an archetype that has a lot of parallels with religion.

    Which makes you feel good because we've been built that way. This trait is advantageous for a species from an evolutionary standpoint.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2009
  16. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I do think that Old England is on a pretty decent path here, Wildo; the difference between you and him will end up being one of perspective.

    Pure and simple, he will believe, and you will not, however he'll continue to look at God as an infusion into each natural phenomenon that can not be disproven. This is absolutely consistent with the natural explanation of said phenomenon, and a good challenge to anyone who wants a naturalistic explanation.

    You can say "9.8 meters per second squared -- not just a good idea, it's the law." He can say, "God dictated that earth gravity in the absence of air resistance results in acceleration of 9.8 meters per second squared. You're right, not just a good idea, it's the law."

    Ultimately, a few hundred years ago, you would be saying "HA! There are no evil spirits, as your religion dictates! Sickness comes from microorganisms!"

    He would reply unruffled "Then the evil spirits were an allegory of sorts, and you mistakenly think you have disproven God's hand in sickness. God made microorganisms, and those make you sick -- that's the real story!"

    So long as Old England is content that faith is an add-on to whatever is the current status of scientific knowledge, he is right: His faith offends nobody and does not impinge on science.

    If, however, he insists that the world was created 6000 years ago in a seven-day period, etc. etc. etc., because certain books associated with faith say as much, then we have a problem. Faith impinges on science, because the man of faith claims to have the answer regardless of scientific inquiry.

    You two may continue to do ideological battle, but so long as both point to empirical evidence and empirical explanations insofar as they are available, there is no practical distinction between Old England's search for God and your search for answers; he merely posits a universe that taken together has a spiritual fabric, whereas you posit one with no such fabric.

    Ultimately the consciousness of the other cannot be discovered or proven except indirectly; in this sense nature itself becomes the "other" (although one is a part of it.)

    I will definitely agree, however, that it is simplest to treat scientific inquiry as if one had no faith, to avoid the bias introduced by preexistent formulations of said faith.

    PFnV
  17. godef

    godef Rookie

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    Are you kidding me? That has to be the one most ignorant statement I ever heard.
  18. Lifer

    Lifer Banned

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    well, if youve been called stupid by a Christian then I regret that.
  19. godef

    godef Rookie

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    Personally, I don't get into in face discussions about Christianity vs atheism, because the one time when I did, I almost got beat up for merely stating my opinion. But for you to say that "you very rarely hear a Christian calling those people stupid or ridiculous" is patently absurd. Ridicule and browbeating of athiests by Christians happens all the time. Yes, I am free to believe what I want, but there is a price to pay for it.
  20. Lifer

    Lifer Banned

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    ridicule and browbeating is not Christian behavior and again I think that is deplorable and im sorry you experienced that. Being a non-Christian for 43 years, and Jewish at that, I faced a little of that at a very young age. Maybe im just being naive that it goes on today with some people who claim to Christian.

    Perhaps that beeping you hear is me back off that statement a bit and a commitment to do some praying and research on it with eyes wide open.

    That all being said, I would hope all sides could discuss these matters without questioning another groups collective intelligence or motives.

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