1. Standard memberKnightWulfe
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    25 Nov '05 13:55
    seen, read, studied, heard, etc... What, of that which diametrically opposes your belief, makes the most sense?

    Atheists, What makes the most sense to you within theism?
    Theists, what makes the most sense to you outside of your belief?
  2. Shetland Primary
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    25 Nov '05 14:47
    Originally posted by KnightWulfe
    seen, read, studied, heard, etc... What, of that which diametrically opposes your belief, makes the most sense?

    Atheists, What makes the most sense to you within theism?
    Theists, what makes the most sense to you outside of your belief?
    There is a story that knda makes sense to me:

    There was a certain atheist that went for a strole in the forest. He was encountered by a famished bear that thought the atheist looked like a good meal. The athesit was terrified. He thought that seeing he was going to die anyway, he might just as well call out to God before he died. He called out and said, "God if you exist, if pray that this bear would become a Christian." His prayer was obviously answered as the atheist suddenly heard the bear prayig to God, saying, "Lord, for this meal that I am about to receive, make me sincerely grateful".
  3. Jupiter
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    25 Nov '05 18:42
    Originally posted by KnightWulfe
    seen, read, studied, heard, etc... What, of that which diametrically opposes your belief, makes the most sense?

    Atheists, What makes the most sense to you within theism?
    Theists, what makes the most sense to you outside of your belief?
    To answer this I'd like to split theists into 2 catagories, mild and extreme. Apologies if you feel pigeonholed by this.

    mild = people who feel religion helps them understand the world a bit more, enjoy the company they keep in the church/mosque/etc., and feel that their beliefs lead them to be tolerant and kind to fellow man.

    extreme = the extremists; religious terrorists, george bush, blind faith101; people who use religion as a tool to hurt others and leverage power that makes them feel slightly more adequate about their own pitiful existance.


    I can understand why the mildly religious want to believe in something. The thought (or threat if brought up in a religious way) of no afterlife is a powerful one, especially for the old and infirm.
    I still don't think it makes sense, but I can understand the need for comfort. I find these people intruiging, progressive and in some cases respect them as much as people who share my own atheist beliefs.

    I can also understand (to a degree) the extremists. They feel weak, and wish to claw back as much power as they can, and use a tool that has been used for several thousand years on record, and probably more off the record, and the main reason why religion has perpetuated throughout history. They use it as a tool to feel better about themselves. If they're cunning, for personal gain and to increase their state and position, and if they're nasty or just led to hurt others and eventually themselves.
  4. Donationrwingett
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    25 Nov '05 19:17
    Originally posted by KnightWulfe
    seen, read, studied, heard, etc... What, of that which diametrically opposes your belief, makes the most sense?

    Atheists, What makes the most sense to you within theism?
    Theists, what makes the most sense to you outside of your belief?
    Nothing theists say makes any sense. Nothing. Well, nothing they say about theism anyway.

    Their very premise is illogical. Nothing that follows from that can possibly make any sense.
  5. Felicific Forest
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    25 Nov '05 19:201 edit
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Nothing theists say makes any sense. Nothing. Well, nothing they say about theism anyway.

    Their very premise is illogical. Nothing that follows from that can possibly make any sense.
    Question for DoctorScribbles: Can a premise ["Their very premise"] be illogical ?
  6. Standard memberDoctorScribbles
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    25 Nov '05 19:243 edits
    Originally posted by ivanhoe
    Question for DoctorScribbles: Can a premise ["Their very premise"] be illogical ?
    I don't know what illogical means. It's not a term I use.

    RWillis probably should have used 'false' or 'incoherent' or 'inconsistent' instead, since those are properties that premises may have. I recommend that he get these things straight before the Battle of '06.
  7. Donationrwingett
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    25 Nov '05 19:321 edit
    Originally posted by DoctorScribbles
    I don't know what illogical means. It's not a term I use.

    RWillis probably should have used 'false' or 'incoherent' or 'inconsistent' instead, since those are properties that premises may have. I recommend that he get these things straight before the Battle of '06.
    I will bow to the good doctor in this instance and accept his critique. As I do not have the same philosophical pretensions that he does, my terminology is not always rigorous. But he may rest assured that the fabled Battle of '06 will be of a higher standard.
  8. Standard memberKnightWulfe
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    25 Nov '05 20:23
    Even being an atheist, myself, I do not see that believing in a higher power is an illogical, incoherant, or false premise, theory or idea. The power behind the belief that there has to be some purpose to our existance is a powerful one.

    Given the utter complexity that is life, even if only upon this planet (which I do not believe we are the only planet to sustain life) would be very easy to believe that there is some sort of higher power out there that created everything. Something or someone that engineered it all. A "Prime Mover" of sorts.

    To believe that humans are the pinnacle of intellect and there is nothing greater is just arrogant. To believe that there is nothing more powerful that exists within a reality alternate from our own is narrow minded. There are too many sciences that show proof that there is more to this reality than what we can see, hear, touch, smell and taste. Far too many studies that show evidence to things that we cannot yet explain. Do I believe it is God or Gods? No. But it certainly is something. It is the leap of faith that theism make to explain all that is unexplainable that defies logic.
  9. Donationrwingett
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    25 Nov '05 22:09
    Originally posted by KnightWulfe
    Even being an atheist, myself, I do not see that believing in a higher power is an illogical, incoherant, or false premise, theory or idea. The power behind the belief that there has to be some purpose to our existance is a powerful one.

    Given the utter complexity that is life, even if only upon this planet (which I do not believe we are the only ...[text shortened]... It is the leap of faith that theism make to explain all that is unexplainable that defies logic.
    One can certainly posit that their life has a purpose without inferring the existence of a god. But it's a little more complicated. I agree that it is very easy and comforting for some to believe that there is some higher power out there. But wishful thinking aside, there is no good reason to infer any supernatural causes for things that can be explained by perfectly natural means.

    As for whether humans are the greatest thing in the universe, I have no way of knowing. Do I think there's life on other planets? I think it's likely. Do I think there are lifeforms of equal intelligence to humans? It's possible. Do I think there are lifeforms with "godlike" intelligence? I doubt it very much.

    As for "sciences that show proof that there is more to this reality than what we can see, hear, touch, smell, and taste," I'm afraid I don't know what you're talking about. You'll have to give me some examples of what you mean. I fully concede that there are many things we do not know, and will likely never know. But there is no good reason to infer a supernatural cause for them. If anything, our track record of finding perfectly natural causes for a host of things formerly attributed solely to the hand of god, strongly indicates that there is a purely naturalistic explanation for everything just waiting to be discovered. To invoke the unexplainable (as theists do) to explain some unknown phenomenon accomplishes nothing. It only pushes the question back one step.
  10. R.I.P.
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    25 Nov '05 22:30
    Some of the ten commandments i can agree with

    Thou shall not kill etc...
  11. Hmmm . . .
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    25 Nov '05 22:461 edit
    Originally posted by rwingett
    One can certainly posit that their life has a purpose without inferring the existence of a god. But it's a little more complicated. I agree that it is very easy and comforting for some to believe that there is some higher power out there. But wishful thinking aside, there is no good reason to infer any supernatural causes for things that can be explained b ...[text shortened]... explain some unknown phenomenon accomplishes nothing. It only pushes the question back one step.
    I think the theistic (as well as the non-theistic/monistic) religions have given us some deeply-wrought and aesthetically rich insights into the human condition in some of their myths and metaphors. I tend to think that human beings make meaning for their lives at least as much as they discover meaning for their lives, and that such ventures of meaning involve aesthetics, as well as passion, as well as reason. I therefore don’t think there is anything inherently unreasonable about pursuing that venture within a religious framework—as long as one can do so without sacrificing one’s intellectual integrity, which for me means keeping it at the level of the symbolic. Likewise, I have no problem with speculation about those aspects of our existence that remain mystery—as long as one realizes that speculation is speculation. Myths and metaphors often come out of such speculation, and myths and metaphors, like music, often touch the human consciousness more deeply than logic.

    With that said—and it is mostly in response to the question posed at the beginning of the thread—I have to rec your post. Well put.
  12. Standard memberDarfius
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    25 Nov '05 23:10
    Originally posted by rwingett
    One can certainly posit that their life has a purpose without inferring the existence of a god. But it's a little more complicated. I agree that it is very easy and comforting for some to believe that there is some higher power out there. But wishful thinking aside, there is no good reason to infer any supernatural causes for things that can be explained b ...[text shortened]... explain some unknown phenomenon accomplishes nothing. It only pushes the question back one step.
    Question…is there evidence for the existence of "spirits" and some "spiritual dimension"?

    Answer: http://www.christian-thinktank.com/eyesopen.html

    Good read. Hope it helps.
  13. Standard memberDarfius
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    25 Nov '05 23:12
    Originally posted by KnightWulfe
    seen, read, studied, heard, etc... What, of that which diametrically opposes your belief, makes the most sense?

    Atheists, What makes the most sense to you within theism?
    Theists, what makes the most sense to you outside of your belief?
    I think the strongest atheistic argument is the existence of evil. It is of course pretty weak, all things considered, but it should give every Christian cause for pause.
  14. Standard memberDoctorScribbles
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    25 Nov '05 23:30
    Darfius, where have you been?
  15. Subscriberno1marauder
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    25 Nov '05 23:35
    Originally posted by Darfius
    Question…is there evidence for the existence of "spirits" and some "spiritual dimension"?

    Answer: http://www.christian-thinktank.com/eyesopen.html

    Good read. Hope it helps.
    How fascinating; there are really invisible beings that inhabit all kinds of people's bodies and can only be driven out by exorcisms! Who knew?
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