1. Standard memberknightmeister
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    23 Mar '06 00:03
    I'm still trying to figure out what Atheists actually believe. I may have been hasty to assume that Atheism = Nihilism without exceptions but I still think there's a case to answer. We theists are clear about what rationale backs up our conviction in love, morality and meaning because we believe these things are rooted in reality. As far as I can tell , most Atheists reject the idea that morality, love and meaning are anything more than arbitary mental constructions and emotions. So what rationale backs up your conviction and committment to these things. Is morality a matter of fact or opinion? If it's only opinion (see wheel of morality thread) , then how come you keep talking about moral values as if they were 'real' things? You may think we are off our heads but at least its coherent....God is real- Morality/love is real - committment to reality . Atheism seems to be...Morality is illusionary and a matter of opinion but commit to it as if it is real? This doesn't add up! What do you guys REALLY believe about the ultimate nature of reality? Have you been to the void and looked over the edge? Or do you understand the question I am asking? How do you not descend into Nihilism? What mental trick do you play on yourselves? Or have I missed something?
    Question....if everyone (you included) in the world (alive or long dead) thought that torturing children was Ok would that make it Ok or would there still be a case for saying it was actually wrong? (my answer is - yes and I could tell you why- because morality is ultimately not a matter of opinion) What's your answer? If the answer is no , how do you feel about this? (Heart felt responses only please - enough of this intellectualisation and philosophical beating about the bush - let's get real for a change!)
  2. Standard memberDavid C
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    23 Mar '06 01:20
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    ...if everyone (you included) in the world (alive or long dead) thought that torturing children was Ok would that make it Ok or would there still be a case for saying it was actually wrong?
    The answer to all your questions has been posted in the other threads. Let me ask you a question of my own (and this has also been asked before, albeit not recently):

    If The Lord, Your God, commanded you to do so, would you stick a butcher knife through a newborn baby?
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    23 Mar '06 01:21
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    I'm still trying to figure out what Atheists actually believe. I may have been hasty to assume that Atheism = Nihilism without exceptions but I still think there's a case to answer. We theists are clear about what rationale backs up our conviction in love, morality and meaning because we believe these things are rooted in reality. As far as I can tell ...[text shortened]... llectualisation and philosophical beating about the bush - let's get real for a change!)
    Atheism = a lack of belief in a god or gods.

    Provide some argument that demonstrates that nihilism follows from the above definition. Otherwise, shut up.

    The existence of God has absolutely nothing to do with morality, or love, or meaning, or....When it comes to such questions, I frankly don't care whether God exists or not.
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    23 Mar '06 01:28
    Originally posted by David C
    The answer to all your questions has been posted in the other threads. Let me ask you a question of my own (and this has also been asked before, albeit not recently):

    If The Lord, Your God, commanded you to do so, would you stick a butcher knife through a newborn baby?
    That's a very good question for the Divine Command Theorist. It's probably unlikely you will get a straight answer, though.
  5. Standard memberscottishinnz
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    23 Mar '06 02:29
    Originally posted by David C
    The answer to all your questions has been posted in the other threads. Let me ask you a question of my own (and this has also been asked before, albeit not recently):

    If The Lord, Your God, commanded you to do so, would you stick a butcher knife through a newborn baby?
    excellent point (so to speak). rec'd
  6. Standard memberDavid C
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    23 Mar '06 05:58
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    That's a very good question for the Divine Command Theorist. It's probably unlikely you will get a straight answer, though.
    True. The responses are weak at best: "Well, he'd never do that, he's a God of Love", or somesuch.
  7. Territories Unknown
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    23 Mar '06 06:02
    Originally posted by David C
    The answer to all your questions has been posted in the other threads. Let me ask you a question of my own (and this has also been asked before, albeit not recently):

    If The Lord, Your God, commanded you to do so, would you stick a butcher knife through a newborn baby?
    What's your answer?
  8. Standard memberDavid C
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    23 Mar '06 06:18
    Originally posted by FreakyKBH
    What's your answer?
    Who, me?
  9. Cape Town
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    23 Mar '06 08:07
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    .... We theists are clear about what rationale backs up our conviction in love, morality and meaning because we believe these things are rooted in reality.
    One reason why I am not a theist is because the rationale you talk about is not clear at all. If questioned further you will descend into one of two arguements:
    1. God dictates all and we cannot understand it.
    2. We have to believe in God or we will descend into nihilism.

    Question....if everyone (you included) in the world (alive or long dead) thought that torturing children was Ok would that make it Ok or would there still be a case for saying it was actually wrong? (my answer is - yes and I could tell you why- because morality is ultimately not a matter of opinion) What's your answer? If the answer is no , how do you feel about this? (Heart felt responses only please - enough of this intellectualisation and philosophical beating about the bush - let's get real for a change!)
    Many people in the world do think that torturing children is OK and do so regularly (spanking and other forms of punishment). Of course the definition of torture does matter. Many americans appear to think that torturing of adults is also OK so long as those adults are either not american or are terrorists. Other people disagree and say it is moraly wrong. It most definitely is a mater of opinion when it come to the borderline cases of morality. Oh and what about blowing up children with bombs? Is that moraly better than torture? If everyone agrees on the morality of this then why does it still happen.
  10. Standard memberknightmeister
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    23 Mar '06 18:22
    Originally posted by FreakyKBH
    What's your answer?
    This may sound petty but I do recall that I asked a question first....?

    What the hell though...no I wouldn't stick a knife through a baby if commanded by God. I would be very cynical about this 'God' and think that I was either hallucinating or deluded by something masquerading as God.

    I'm guessing that you probably didn't understand my question in this thread since none of you have made an attempt to answer it properly but instead have chosen to ask me to answer your question. Fine , I've had a go at answering it....at least it's an attempt.

    Your Atheism is too cosy. You don't see that there is something to wrestle with? Your reactions are very emotive and suggest to me that you find the idea of where your beliefs ultimately lead you disquieting.It's also interesting that you want me to 'shut up' . Oops...have I pushed a button? My beliefs are a constant challenge and sometimes frighten me , I know that often I don't live up to them and they present me with great contradictions sometimes. But you guys don't seem to even grasp the nettle , or maybe you do but don't want to own it. I've answered your question ...now please answer mine if you would.(you might like to re-read again to find it)
  11. Standard memberknightmeister
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    23 Mar '06 18:27
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    One reason why I am not a theist is because the rationale you talk about is not clear at all. If questioned further you will descend into one of two arguements:
    1. God dictates all and we cannot understand it.
    2. We have to believe in God or we will descend into nihilism.

    [b]Question....if everyone (you included) in the world (alive or long dead) tho ...[text shortened]... better than torture? If everyone agrees on the morality of this then why does it still happen.
    At least it's an answer! I was interested in you saying that in borderline cases it may be a matter of opinion , which suggests that in other cases it may be a maater of fact in your mind? If this is so , have you really thought through what you are saying? What facts? Without an outside moral law of some kind (which takes you dangerously close to being a theist), there can be only opinions! Which moral law are you appealing to?
  12. Standard memberHalitose
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    23 Mar '06 18:40
    Originally posted by David C
    The answer to all your questions has been posted in the other threads. Let me ask you a question of my own (and this has also been asked before, albeit not recently):

    If The Lord, Your God, commanded you to do so, would you stick a butcher knife through a newborn baby?
    Ah... the Euthyphro Dilemma. As Aquinas argued, morality is ingrained in God's character, so you are asking the wrong question -- the question should be whether God would give such a command.
  13. Standard memberBosse de Nage
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    23 Mar '06 18:43
    Originally posted by Halitose
    Ah... the Euthyphro Dilemma. As Aquinas argued, morality is ingrained in God's character, so you are asking the wrong question -- the question should be whether God would give such a command.
    I thought you said God was not bound by his own laws!
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    23 Mar '06 19:09
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    I thought you said God was not bound by his own laws!
    The term "law" here needs disambiguation. Halitose's statement was about His character (which may be called "law" in the sense that it determines what He can/will or cannot/won't do) - not about laws He has given to human beings to follow.
  15. Standard memberHalitose
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    23 Mar '06 19:111 edit
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    I thought you said God was not bound by his own laws!
    He cannot be dishonest to himself. Goodness is not a law -- it's an expression of His character.

    Edit: Ah... LH beat me to it.
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