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Debates Forum

  1. 13 Jun '15 23:47 / 1 edit
    I've noticed in my life that quite often Christians find themselves defending their beliefs, and that is no less true than this forum so far. I'm fine with this, needs to be done. But I like to go on the offensive a bit too. Afterall, it's only fair and an Atheist ought to be able to answer for themselves too just as a Christian does.

    So, I'm just going to put this out there, and I'm looking for non-Christians to defend and Christians hopefully to attack. Let's play fair and turn the tables a bit if we can.

    It has been commonly asserted by Christian apologists that every religion and worldview (and by worldview we can encompass Secularism, Atheisms, Agnosticism, etc) need to answer these four fundamental questions.

    -Origins
    -Meaning
    -Morality
    -Destiny

    Now, evolution can in many ways answer origins to an extent, but can it really satisfy meaning or morality or destiny? I don't believe so.

    So I'm looking for you professed Atheists/ Evolutionists to leave the realm of science a bit or use science if you think you can and candidly discuss meaning, morality, and destiny.

    I'll look forward to what you have to say, but be prepared for me to attack too This is afterall what I do for a living.

    For example-I find meaning in knowing I'm made in the image of God and through the blood of his Son find my destiny to be in heaven. What do you non-Christians do with that sense of longing. Surely you want to find meaning, and if you don't then why bother with anything? This is just an example-I'm looking for you to explain to me how you get those four from your framework.
  2. Standard member wolfgang59
    Infidel
    14 Jun '15 00:15
    Originally posted by AppleChess
    I've noticed in my life that quite often Christians find themselves defending their beliefs, and that is no less true than this forum so far. I'm fine with this, needs to be done. But I like to go on the offensive a bit too. Afterall, it's only fair and an Atheist ought to be able to answer for themselves too just as a Christian does.

    So, I'm just goi ...[text shortened]... just an example-I'm looking for you to explain to me how you get those four from your framework.
    There is absolutely no reason why two atheists should agree on
    -Origins
    -Meaning
    -Morality
    -Destiny
    Atheism doesn't say anything about these, indeed Atheism doesn't say anything about anything. It is merely not having a belief in god or gods.
  3. 14 Jun '15 00:17 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by wolfgang59
    There is absolutely no reason why two atheists should agree on
    -Origins
    -Meaning
    -Morality
    -Destiny
    Atheism doesn't say anything about these, indeed Atheism doesn't say anything about anything. It is merely not having a belief in god or gods.
    So good to know you are able to meet and play ball.

    Actually, Atheism should. You have some form of morality I assume-how do you determine your moral stance? Atheism needs to have a source. Or are you saying everything with Atheism is meaningless?

    Not having a belief in god/gods affects all four of those questions. Surely you can see that.

    Also, the fact that you don't think Atheism should/ought to answer these makes me question your Atheism altogether lol. It can't be a very fulfilling worldview to hold. A denial of God is a denial of God's morality; from where do you get yours?
  4. Standard member vivify
    rain
    14 Jun '15 00:28 / 1 edit
    "Meaning" and "destiny" don't need to be "satisfied" by non- theists. These are made-up concepts that vary by region, worldview and time period. Any answers to these are completely arbitrary.

    Morality can vary in the same way, but morality can have objective measures. For example, rape and murder being considered wrong is fairly universal, for objective reasons such as the results of these actions harming society both collectively and on an individual basis.

    For a non- theist like myself, moral truths that can be reached objectively are among the most important things to consider.
  5. 14 Jun '15 00:55
    Originally posted by AppleChess
    I've noticed in my life that quite often Christians find themselves defending their beliefs, and that is no less true than this forum so far. I'm fine with this, needs to be done. But I like to go on the offensive a bit too. Afterall, it's only fair and an Atheist ought to be able to answer for themselves too just as a Christian does.

    So, I'm just goi ...[text shortened]... just an example-I'm looking for you to explain to me how you get those four from your framework.
    I think that things simply are, no more. I am agnostic, leaning atheist, or sometimes the other way around. We make our own meaning and morality, to fit in with our existence. It is what is and we then give it a name. as for origins and destiny??? again they are what they where and will be. no more. Life is simply a chain of events, there is no such thing as free will, it is an illusion. Because we are conscious of our place in the " flow" we feel that we make choices. But everything that happened prior to our smallest of choices is what led to that choice. the small particle of dust that you may or may not look at/for now was destined to be there forever ago. if you now feel for that piece of dust it will only be because I am replying to your post etc etc ad-infinitum.

    to sum up, these things do not" need" meaning. We create ( some of us) the need.
  6. 14 Jun '15 01:21
    Originally posted by vivify
    "Meaning" and "destiny" don't need to be "satisfied" by non- theists. These are made-up concepts that vary by region, worldview and time period. Any answers to these are completely arbitrary.

    Morality can vary in the same way, but morality can have objective measures. For example, rape and murder being considered wrong is fairly universal, for objec ...[text shortened]... f, moral truths that can be reached objectively are among the most important things to consider.
    So you look at the results as a measure of right and wrong? Care to flesh that out a bit?
  7. 14 Jun '15 01:23
    Originally posted by jimmac
    I think that things simply are, no more. I am agnostic, leaning atheist, or sometimes the other way around. We make our own meaning and morality, to fit in with our existence. It is what is and we then give it a name. as for origins and destiny??? again they are what they where and will be. no more. Life is simply a chain of events, there is no such thing as ...[text shortened]... -infinitum.

    to sum up, these things do not" need" meaning. We create ( some of us) the need.
    Do you really find that view that we create meaning but there is actually no meaning existentially satisfying? I mean, do you like knowing there is no ultimate meaning in your soon or daughter's life, your life, or any one else's for that matter?

    Also, "we make our own meaning and morality." Ok. So does the man who takes life by force to gain what he wants. Is that not his meaning and morality? Upon what basis do you really judge his actions as wrong? Do they just inconvenience you?

    Some societies prefer to love their neighbour; others prefer to eat their neighbour. Which is your personal preference?
  8. 14 Jun '15 01:47 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by AppleChess
    Do you really find that view that we create meaning but there is actually no meaning existentially satisfying? I mean, do you like knowing there is no ultimate meaning in your soon or daughter's life, your life, or any one else's for that matter?

    Also, "we make our own meaning and morality." Ok. So does the man who takes life by force to gain what he ...[text shortened]... o love their neighbour; others prefer to eat their neighbour. Which is your personal preference?
    being satisfied with that view or not has no relevance, it simply is. I find meaning, therefore it is. I love and care for my family, and indeed people everywhere. I am powerfully pro many Christian morals, My "choice". My morality.
    Taking someone elses life "has" meaning and morality, but it is one that I strongly detest. I am not sure that I would "judge" them but I would condemn them as they represent a way that I do not want to be a part of. That is not the world that I want to live in. It is not "just" an inconvenience but I would not debate the use of that term.
    I also find a massive difference between individual morality and bureaucratic morality. An individual being immoral is sad but a bureaucracy being immoral is worse. though even then morality is often a grey area as 3 or 4 people that care VERY much about a circumstance can have VERY opposing views.

    Even then we give our view the term " morality" It is what it is.
  9. 14 Jun '15 01:59
    Originally posted by jimmac
    being satisfied with that view or not has no relevance, it simply is. I find meaning, therefore it is. I love and care for my family, and indeed people everywhere. I am powerfully pro many Christian morals, My "choice". My morality.
    Taking someone elses life "has" meaning and morality, but it is one that I strongly detest. I am not sure that I would "judge" ...[text shortened]... ave VERY opposing views.

    Even then we give our view the term " morality" It is what it is.
    So here's a question-

    If I took an infant in front of you and cut it's head off, would you say I had done something wrong?
  10. Standard member wolfgang59
    Infidel
    14 Jun '15 04:02
    Originally posted by AppleChess
    Or are you saying everything with Atheism is meaningless?

    Everything within Atheism is this.

    NO BELIEF IN A GOD

    No more.
  11. 14 Jun '15 05:00
    Originally posted by wolfgang59
    Everything within Atheism is this.

    [b]NO BELIEF IN A GOD


    No more.[/b]
    Your view is overly simplistic. To not see that a disbelief in God has consequences is for you to close your eyes to obvious evidence. It is really an untenable way to live.

    Nietzsche saw this in his poem, The Parable of the Madman. He at least was honest about the extent of Atheism-that it logically leads to nihilism. You just don't seem prepared to accept that. But it is really not a logical posture to hold.

    Here is the The Parable of the Madman, in case you are curious for your own reading,

    "Have you not heard of that madman who lit a lantern in the bright morning hours, ran to the market-place, and cried incessantly: "I am looking for God! I am looking for God!"
    As many of those who did not believe in God were standing together there, he excited considerable laughter. Have you lost him, then? said one. Did he lose his way like a child? said another. Or is he hiding? Is he afraid of us? Has he gone on a voyage? or emigrated? Thus they shouted and laughed. The madman sprang into their midst and pierced them with his glances.
    "Where has God gone?" he cried. "I shall tell you. We have killed him - you and I. We are his murderers. But how have we done this? How were we able to drink up the sea? Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon? What did we do when we unchained the earth from its sun? Whither is it moving now? Whither are we moving now? Away from all suns? Are we not perpetually falling? Backward, sideward, forward, in all directions? Is there any up or down left? Are we not straying as through an infinite nothing? Do we not feel the breath of empty space? Has it not become colder? Is it not more and more night coming on all the time? Must not lanterns be lit in the morning? Do we not hear anything yet of the noise of the gravediggers who are burying God? Do we not smell anything yet of God's decomposition? Gods too decompose. God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we, murderers of all murderers, console ourselves? That which was the holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet possessed has bled to death under our knives. Who will wipe this blood off us? With what water could we purify ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we need to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we not ourselves become gods simply to be worthy of it? There has never been a greater deed; and whosoever shall be born after us - for the sake of this deed he shall be part of a higher history than all history hitherto."
    Here the madman fell silent and again regarded his listeners; and they too were silent and stared at him in astonishment. At last he threw his lantern to the ground, and it broke and went out. "I have come too early," he said then; "my time has not come yet. The tremendous event is still on its way, still travelling - it has not yet reached the ears of men. Lightning and thunder require time, the light of the stars requires time, deeds require time even after they are done, before they can be seen and heard. This deed is still more distant from them than the distant stars - and yet they have done it themselves."
    It has been further related that on that same day the madman entered divers churches and there sang a requiem. Led out and quietened, he is said to have retorted each time: "what are these churches now if they are not the tombs and sepulchres of God?""

    I'd submit this to your reading too, by Steve Turner,

    "We believe in Marx,Freud and Darwin
    We believe everything is OK
    as long as you don’t hurt anyone
    to the best of your definition of hurt,
    and to the best of your knowledge.
    We believe in sex before, during, and
    after marriage.
    We believe in the therapy of sin.
    We believe that adultery is fun.
    We believe that sodomy’s OK.
    We believe that taboos are taboo.
    We believe that everything’s getting better
    despite evidence to the contrary.
    The evidence must be investigated
    And you can prove anything with evidence.
    We believe there’s something in horoscopes
    UFO’s and bent spoons.
    Jesus was a good man just like Buddha,
    Mohammed, and ourselves.
    He was a good moral teacher though we think
    His good morals were bad.
    We believe that all religions are basically the same-
    at least the one that we read was.
    They all believe in love and goodness.
    They only differ on matters of creation,
    sin, heaven, hell, God, and salvation.
    We believe that after death comes the Nothing
    Because when you ask the dead what happens
    they say nothing.
    If death is not the end, if the dead have lied, then its
    compulsory heaven for all
    excepting perhaps
    Hitler, Stalin, and Genghis Kahn
    We believe in Masters and Johnson
    What’s selected is average.
    What’s average is normal.
    What’s normal is good.
    We believe in total disarmament.
    We believe there are direct links between warfare and
    bloodshed.
    Americans should beat their guns into tractors .
    And the Russians would be sure to follow.
    We believe that man is essentially good.
    It’s only his behavior that lets him down.
    This is the fault of society.
    Society is the fault of conditions.
    Conditions are the fault of society.
    We believe that each man must find the truth that
    is right for him.
    Reality will adapt accordingly.
    The universe will readjust.
    History will alter.
    We believe that there is no absolute truth
    excepting the truth
    that there is no absolute truth.
    We believe in the rejection of creeds,
    And the flowering of individual thought.
    If chance be
    the Father of all flesh,
    disaster is his rainbow in the sky
    and when you hear
    State of Emergency!
    Sniper Kills Ten!
    Troops on Rampage!
    Whites go Looting!
    Bomb Blasts School!
    It is but the sound of man
    worshipping his maker."

    Yes, Atheism has consequences.
  12. 14 Jun '15 05:03
    Originally posted by AppleChess
    So here's a question-

    If I took an infant in front of you and cut it's head off, would you say I had done something wrong?
    without adding provisos I would say YES. and????
  13. 14 Jun '15 05:12
    Originally posted by jimmac
    without adding provisos I would say YES. and????
    Upon what basis do you pronounce that judgement ?I'm going to really try to nail down why etc. You have to have a reason. Why is that wrong? By what authority is it wrong? Who says it's wrong?
  14. 14 Jun '15 05:23
    Originally posted by AppleChess

    Yes, Atheism has consequences.[/b]
    Yes, I agree, Atheism has sad consequences "yet" that in and of itself does not prove there is a God rather points to the need for one. It is that " need" that has created " god".
    That humankind has lost its way is ( to me at least) self evident. And salvation may indeed be found in the self delusion of a god. Though god worshipers over time have had dubious morals to say the least. (By todays moral standards at least.) but as time passes we seem to re-create new morals. that is what we do.

    Humanity desperately needs a role model. And yes, sadly,the non existence of a God is, well, sad, but, as I see it at least, a fact.
  15. 14 Jun '15 05:26
    Originally posted by AppleChess
    Upon what basis do you pronounce that judgement ?I'm going to really try to nail down why etc. You have to have a reason. Why is that wrong? By what authority is it wrong? Who says it's wrong?
    only that the me that is me feels as though it is wrong.I have created, or have been the product of my past created, the moral standard for myself. It pains me so therefore I call it wrong.