1. Standard memberknightmeister
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    09 Dec '07 23:35
    To a certain extent we all have beliefs based on what we feel is true to the best of our current knowledge. Here and there we have ragged edges to our beliefs and areas where we struggle but overall there is a sanity to both positions.

    I think that most atheists are sane and hold their beliefs reasonably. I may think that there are assumptions that they make about God which I don't agree with or that there are just things that they don't understand but I can understand atheists....I used to be one.

    For an atheist God seems an unlikely proposition. For a theist God seems likely. The main difference seems to be the differing approach to truth. Atheists seem pre-occupied with trying to "figure out" logically if God might exist or not , whereas for me it's not a question of "figuring it out" so much as "getting to know".

    Atheism makes sense in the context of logic propositions (eg is A true or not true) . Christianity is the idea that truth can be known not as a logical proposition but that God can be known personally. It's the difference between saying "I believe that God does not exist" and " I know God" . One is an intellectual position , the other is about a different kind of knowing , like knowing your partner.

    Christ never said that we were to "know that God exists" just that we would know Him and know Him intimately. I can see the sanity of trying to philosophise about God to "figure it out" but I also see the sanity in trying to seek and get to know God as an alternative way.

    For me the key was the realisation that even if I got to the point where I knew that God probably existed it would mean nothing if I didn't actually get to know him personally. My "knowledge " would still be incomplete.
  2. Joined
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    09 Dec '07 23:491 edit
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    To a certain extent we all have beliefs based on what we feel is true to the best of our current knowledge. Here and there we have ragged edges to our beliefs and areas where we struggle but overall there is a sanity to both positions.

    I think that most atheists are sane and hold their beliefs reasonably. I may think that there are assumptions that ally get to know him personally. My "knowledge " would still be incomplete.
    "For me the key was the realisation that even if I got to the point where I knew that God probably existed it would mean nothing if I didn't actually get to know him personally. My "knowledge " would still be incomplete."

    So true.

    But denying the existence of God is not rational.

    "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:"
  3. Standard memberLord Of Pie
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    10 Dec '07 03:40
    Originally posted by josephw
    But denying the existence of God is not rational.

    "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:"
    To sum this quote up: The only proof that god has is Humankind, and that life is so complex and beautiful that it coult not have come up randomly, there had to be a creator.

    This assumption is grossly wrong, the world as we know it is beautiful and complex and it did not come about randomly, far from it, the darwinian model shows reason and shows how life can come about, it is far from random. The same things that christians marvel at in the way that they marvel at 'God's work I, and many other atheists, marvel at the complexity of life, and the fact that it all came about naturally.

    To say that god's only proof in himself is that it is OBVIOUS that we are created shows agressive ignorance unparalelled. Since it is not OBVIOUS and has been proven otherwise there is no -proof- of a god, therefore god exists only in the mind of man, similar to an invisible friend. Then again, i jump to conclusion, it could be said that although it cannot be proven does not mean it can't exist. To this I ask the question: 'Do you BELIEVE there is a teapot orbiting inbetween Earth and Mars?' If you do, I call you crazy, it is nigh impossible, and infinitly unlikly, however how do I prove you wrong? I can't disprove it, only prove the fact that it is infinitly unlikly, on the flip side you cannot prove that it exists absolutly except by scanning the heavens with a high power telescope. If you believe it that much, and want to prove it to me, please look all you want, it saves me the trouble of having to deal with you and your ignorance.
  4. Standard memberRed Night
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    10 Dec '07 05:53
    Originally posted by Lord Of Pie
    To sum this quote up: The only proof that god has is Humankind, and that life is so complex and beautiful that it coult not have come up randomly, there had to be a creator.

    This assumption is grossly wrong, the world as we know it is beautiful and complex and it did not come about randomly, far from it, the darwinian model shows reason and shows how ...[text shortened]... look all you want, it saves me the trouble of having to deal with you and your ignorance.
    It is fascinating to me that the atheists require their own dogma. A dogma that is no more convincing in dispelling the notion of God than the virgin birth or the ride to Heaven from the rock.

    What is it about Christians, Atheists, and Muslims that makes them so certain in their convictions that they dispel all other options out of hand and insist on proselytizing their own beliefs as the only possible answer to a question that may be many levels beyond our understanding.
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    10 Dec '07 06:16
    Originally posted by Red Night
    It is fascinating to me that the atheists require their own dogma. A dogma that is no more convincing in dispelling the notion of God than the virgin birth or the ride to Heaven from the rock.

    What is it about Christians, Atheists, and Muslims that makes them so certain in their convictions that they dispel all other options out of hand and insist on ...[text shortened]... iefs as the only possible answer to a question that may be many levels beyond our understanding.
    What is the dogma of atheism?

    I'm an atheist and I have no idea what you're talking about, and I suspect you don't either, but go ahead, prove me wrong!
  6. Standard memberIron Monkey
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    10 Dec '07 06:262 edits
    PART 1
    it really comes down to what it is reasonable to believe, or to put it another way, what we have good reason to believe. usually, but not always, we have good reason to believe what our senses tell us. my senses currently tell me that i am typing this message into a pc, and that the fan is blowing on me, and there are trees growing outside the window, for example, and the best explanation for these appearances is that they correspond fairly closely in some sense to reality. the philosophical position known as empiricism has it that all of our knowledge about the world is ultimately derived from what our senses tell us. to be a skeptic about the appearances i just mentioned is usually to believe something like i am hooked up to a giant computer like in the matrix, and that the world i experience is illusory. but we really don't have a good reason to be skeptical in this way. the best explanation is the most straight-forward: the world exists and it is pretty muc, in a sense, as it appears. yes, the pc, the fan, and the trees are all made of sub-atomic particles/waves or whatever, but that doesn't change the conclusion.

    Now, i also believe that Sweden exists, even though i have had no direct sensory contact with it. either all the books, movies, documentaries and so on i have ever read or watched that mentioned Sweden as a real place, and all the people i have ever met or heard of that claimed to be from Sweden, were perpetrating a giant hoax on me, or there really is a Sweden. again, the best explanation is the most straight-forward one - there really is a Sweden, and i am being reasonable in believing in its existence.

    Now, what can we say about God? what good reasons do we have to believe in his existence? (or non-existence?)
  7. Cape Town
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    10 Dec '07 06:36
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    I can understand atheists....I used to be one.
    Whenever someone says that they used to be Christian you immediately say "but they were not 'a true Christian'" or something to that effect. So maybe I can at this point point out that you were not a 'true Atheist'. 🙂
    Only joking.
    But the truth is that atheists are not a group of people holding similar beliefs they are merely the set of all people not holding a group of beliefs (theism) and as such you cannot possibly claim to understand them all simply because you belonged to that set at one time. In fact you have frequently shown in our conversations that you do not understand my position.
  8. Standard memberRed Night
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    10 Dec '07 06:39
    Originally posted by The Dude 84
    What is the dogma of atheism?

    I'm an atheist and I have no idea what you're talking about, and I suspect you don't either, but go ahead, prove me wrong!
    As an example:

    Atheists preach darwinian evolution as a substitute for God. Some religions believe in creationism. Darwin disproves creationism therefore there is no God.

    But, one doesn't necessarily follow the other.

    Disproving a tenet of a certain religion doesn not disprove the existence of God.
  9. Standard memberIron Monkey
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    10 Dec '07 06:481 edit
    Originally posted by Red Night
    Atheists preach darwinian evolution as a substitute for God.
    I don't think so. Atheists uphold Darwin's theory of the origin of species through natural selection as an alternative to the Judao-Christian story of the creation of the world's inhabitants in the matter of a couple of days. Darwinism isn't inconsistent with the existence of God, and has nothing to say about that - it merely removes one reason people thought they had for believing in God, by showing that animals and plants came to be the way they are today over the course of billions of years and that they came about through natural rather than supernatural means. By the same token, geology also tells us the world wasn't created in six days. Astronomy tells us the universe is about 15 billion (last time i checked) years old, and started off with the Big Bang. Again, this isn't inconsistent with the existence of God.

    The problem with atheism is that it goes a step too far. it goes from 'there isn't sufficient evidence for the existence of God' - a reasonable assertion - to 'there isn't a God'. But there isn't sufficient evidence for that either. The only really reasonable position is agnosticsm.
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    10 Dec '07 08:01
    Originally posted by Iron Monkey
    I don't think so. Atheists uphold Darwin's theory of the origin of species through natural selection as an alternative to the Judao-Christian story of the creation of the world's inhabitants in the matter of a couple of days. Darwinism isn't inconsistent with the existence of God, and has nothing to say about that - it merely removes one reason people th ...[text shortened]... icient evidence for that either. The only really reasonable position is agnosticsm.
    When I say I am an atheist I mean it in the sense that I live my life as if I know God certainly does not exist, though I'll allow for the theoretical possibility that he could in the same way Santa Claus or the easter bunny is real.
  11. Melbourne, Australia
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    10 Dec '07 08:13
    Originally posted by Red Night
    As an example:

    Atheists preach darwinian evolution as a substitute for God. Some religions believe in creationism. Darwin disproves creationism therefore there is no God.

    But, one doesn't necessarily follow the other.

    Disproving a tenet of a certain religion doesn not disprove the existence of God.
    I've never heard an atheist preach - let along preach a scientific theory. That would be a little idiotic - like preaching about gravity or acid base reactions.

    Evolution doesn't substitute for god, which the many religions that accept evolution can simply suggest. Darwin doesn't disprove anything - let along creationism. Creationism, being a religious position is not disprovable. You either believe it or you don't. (I don't.)
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    10 Dec '07 08:15
    Originally posted by Red Night
    As an example:

    Atheists preach darwinian evolution as a substitute for God. Some religions believe in creationism. Darwin disproves creationism therefore there is no God.

    But, one doesn't necessarily follow the other.

    Disproving a tenet of a certain religion doesn not disprove the existence of God.
    Evolution isn't made up by atheists!! Scientists without any religious agenda theorized it and affirmed it over and over again.

    Evolution is not atheist dogma. It is among the most conclusive things in science. It doesn't make sense to hold any position without a reason for it and evolution is a big part of the reason why it makes no sense to believe creationism. So what?

    If you tell me that your god created the world in and everything in it in 6 days and everything in science completely disproves it I don't have to disprove EVERYTHING in your religion for it to be reasonable to hold the position of an atheist.

    You have to admit that the non-sensical explanation of the worlds creation should make the other things in the bible less credible right? If you were taking financial advice from someone who made a MASSIVE mistake in a fundamental part of their advice how seriously would you take everything else they say? I bet you wouldn't say "my accountant works in mysterious ways! I gotta have faith!"

    What a joke.
  13. Cape Town
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    10 Dec '07 08:16
    Originally posted by Red Night
    Atheists preach darwinian evolution as a substitute for God.
    When referring to atheists you should always qualify your statements with "some atheists" as you can only reasonably be talking about a subset of them. I don't personally know of any atheists who "preach darwinian evolution as a substitute for God." but there probably are some out there.
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    10 Dec '07 08:321 edit
    The burden of proof is solely on the person who holds the outrageous position of believing a man in the sky created the world in 6 days.

    This has been said so many times on this forum and it's so obvious I shoudn't have to say it, but it's true and requires reminding.

    Every argument that works for God works for santa claus, a flying spaghetti monster and any other conceivable object.

    If I was a clever enough marketer (maybe a science fiction writer) I could probably come up with a creation story featuring aliens this time! It would seem outlandish but by manipulating the right people I could probably make millions of dollars! Besides, HOW CAN ANYONE TELL ME HUMANS WEREN'T PUT HERE BY ALIENS?

    This is how religion got started in the first place and I'm sure you picked up on Elron Hubbard and scientology in my example. It seems impossible until you realise it still happens...

    It is soo easy to see how people thousands of years ago had no idea how they got here and religion showed human conscioussness to an amazing extent. THEN it was a tremondous advancement in thought. The fact that people are still clinging to it in the face of such a mountain of evidence is nothing less than pathetic.

    Jesus would be an atheist in the year 2007!
  15. Standard memberknightmeister
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    10 Dec '07 08:42
    Originally posted by amannion
    I've never heard an atheist preach - let along preach a scientific theory. That would be a little idiotic - like preaching about gravity or acid base reactions.

    Evolution doesn't substitute for god, which the many religions that accept evolution can simply suggest. Darwin doesn't disprove anything - let along creationism. Creationism, being a religious position is not disprovable. You either believe it or you don't. (I don't.)
    "I've never heard an atheist preach"-----

    Richard Dawkins?
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