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Christanity vs. Atheism
Religion

peoplechange
Dec 11, 2011
35 votes
15 debaters
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Atheist


carlodog
Dec 12, 2011
8 convinced
Rebuttal
Atheism cannot be lived out consistently. No person who claims to be an atheist truly acts like an atheist. They are fundamentally inconsistent, in the way in which they act compared to the implications of their worldview.

To start of with they must affirm the eternality of the universe. Its the only option if they want to be logically consistent. But, an eternal universe cannot be supported by modern science or even philosophy. So most atheists affirm the Big Bang which does not help their case any, because they do not have a cause for it. For the cause must be immaterial, non-spacial, and timeless. Yet, even now they cannot produce a plausible cause that matches these prerequisites.

Second. Most atheists affirm that there is such a thing as evil, or affirm evil is in the world. Yet, they have no absolute standard of goodness in which they can discern what evil actually is. This makes evil a purely subjective concept. If it is a subjective concept then there truly is no such thing as evil, and it is not in the world. Its only an individual perspective, based on one's own ideologies and presumptions. Which leads to the third reason.

Third. All atheists must be moral relativists. For there is no absolute morality, because there is no absolute standard of goodness. But if this much is true, then the world in which we live would be much different. For people live as though there are absolute standards of morality. Which is most easily seen by the way people expect other people to treat them. Even jurisprudence reveals an absolute standard of morality. Yet, the atheist must say there is none, and live as though there is none, and expect people to treat them as though there is none.

In the end the atheist must affirm that life is utterly meaningless, the only consistent atheist is a nihilist, but no person lives their life as though it is meaningless. People want their life to have meaning, and live as though their life has meaning, but they have no reason to act as though their life has meaning, other than the meaning the ascribe to it. Which in the grand view of human existence and all reality means absolutely nothing. The true atheist cannot be consistent.

Being that the belief cannot be lived out, or held with any dignity or integrity is summit that Christianity is exceedingly more tenable and reasonable.






 
theudas
Dec 13, 2011
4 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

"To start of with they must affirm the eternality of the universe. Its the only option if they want to be logically consistent. But, an eternal universe cannot be supported by modern science or even philosophy.”

-- As someone who doesn’t believe in a God, I don’t have to provide the answer to the creation of the universe. I can point out the merits in leading theories, I can point out natural phenomenon that were involved. But I don’t know everything, as far as the origins of the universe go, I don’t know.

"Second. Most atheists affirm that there is such a thing as evil, or affirm evil is in the world. Yet, they have no absolute standard of goodness in which they can discern what evil actually is.”

-- good and evil are terms we use to describe certain behaviours and actions usually by pointing out the results and how they can be harmful

"All atheists must be moral relativists. For there is no absolute morality, because there is no absolute standard of goodness.”

-- so? point out the standard you believe in, and what you have is one set of standards you believe is true, while there are other groups who disagree. I have heard no argument that supports an absolute standard. My morals and ethics have changed over time.

"In the end the atheist must affirm that life is utterly meaningless, the only consistent atheist is a nihilist”

-- an atheist and a nihilist are different things, I don’t see how you make the connection.

"Being that the belief cannot be lived out, or held with any dignity or integrity “

-- I don’t see how you’ve demonstrated this, and frankly this appears to be a personal attack by suggesting your opponents lack dignity and integrity


 
alexcarrier
Dec 12, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Atheists can believe the universe is eternal or it
isn't. They are not bound by any credos stating otherwise.
Most Atheists believe Big Bang is correct, true. But Big Bang,
explains the development of the universe as we know it.
It never claimed to explain much of anything prior.
Which renders the rest of your first argument moot.

Standard of Goodness. I agree, Atheism has no standard
for goodness, thank goodness.
A standard of goodness does not guarantee goodness.
Anyone who kills has disobeyed a tenet absolutely
paramount to being a good Christian.
"Exodus 20:13"
"You shall not murder."/"Thou shall not kill."
Military soldiers of Christian faith kill, sanctioned by
their nation's laws--with good intentions mind you--
...but the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
Thou shall not kill means thou shall not kill.
No means no.
This is a repercussion of having moral absolutes.
Technically, only soldiers with no conflicting moral
obligations should serve in the army.
That means no Christians.

Secondly, a standard of goodness is not required to
make moral choices. An atheist can full well make moral
choices based on what he or she knows is hurtful to them
as an individual. Much like "Do unto others.";
The Golden Rule. And for good reason.
It stands to reason that if it hurts me, it'll probably hurt
you. Grounds enough for defining evil without using
objective and absolute standards.
Even many young atheists can come to this conclusion
empirically, never-mind the intellectually mature ones.

Moreover, Christianity is fixated on telling people they
will go to heaven or hell for their actions. I say that no
person coerced by rewards and punishments can possibly make
a truly moral choice. Because Atheists reason unhindered by
what they stand to gain, their choices truly reflect goodwill
and not a fear of a higher power.

People don't live as though there are absolute standards
of morality. This very site is proof. People can't agree
whether abortion is moral or not, and that includes both
men of faith and of none. To say that
"...jurisprudence reveals an absolute
standard of morality..."
must be false. Laws change all the time. The judicial system
is a dynamic force; ever changing. It is in constant change,
always mending the error of its ways and not fixing that
which remains unbroken. Much like human beings should act.
We should always seek to keep our minds open to new moral
possibilities, especially the possibility that our beliefs
could be wrong.
I wrote this rebuttal only after having tried to argue for
your side; its only fair.

As John Stuart Mill put it.
"Strange it is, that men should admit the validity of
the arguments for free discussion, but object to
their being "pushed to an extreme"; not seeing that
unless the reasons are good for an extreme case,
they are not good for any case. Strange that they
should imagine that they are not assuming
infallibility, when they acknowledge that there
should be free discussion on all subjects which can
possibly be doubtful, but think that some particular
principle or doctrine should be forbidden to be
questioned because it is so certain, that is,
because they are certain that it is certain.
To call any proposition certain, while there is any
one who would deny its certainty if permitted,
but who is not permitted, is to assume that we
ourselves, and those who agree with us,
are the judges of certainty, and judges without
hearing the other side."

I must add to my conclusion that some atheists will
not fit into the picture that I have painted. But it is the
bulk of the minority that is atheism that I sought to
represent.
Besides, the same can be said for the other side.
It isn't race, colour or creed that defines the man.
A bad man can be a man of faith--a good man can be without
a reason to be.

 
alexcarrier
Dec 13, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: calistio Show


A contradiction is an inconsistency in words that I use,
not words that you juxtapose to mine.

I maintain that a deed done--when the atheist stands nothing
to gain-- is of greater moral resonance than that of a
Christians. (What if a good deed is bad for the one doing it?
What does the Atheist stand to gain then?)
The exact kind of good deed I described was one where there
was no gain of any kind on the part of the do-gooder.
Mother Theresa never stood much of anything to gain by her
actions, from what I'm told. Never cared for fame or for
herself (at least not more than she did for others).
Not that it matters, but she was a woman of faith.
How's that for acting without something to gain?

To say that all decisions are made with some bigger picture in
mind and that everyone reasons with something in mind to gain
are not the same thing.

You can buy coffee for someone in line behind you at the drive
through. You have gained nothing if but for the satisfaction
of making someone else's day brighter... hopefully.
Do you consider making someone feel good a gain? Really?
Does personal satisfaction and dissatisfaction fall under
the category of reward and punishment, tantamount to heaven
and hell? Then I say, how weak must be your heaven, how weak
your hell, that they amount to feeling good or crummy about
yourself. Heaven and hell are the kinds of rewards and punishments that
coerce some poor Christians in into behaving "with morals".
Not because they truly want to do good, but just to save their
own hides.
I'm sure many Christians would be ashamed of their fellows
believers if they knew for a fact how these people truly think.

People will do anything to get into heaven.
Martin Luther posted the
"Ninety-Five Theses on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences"
in 1517, specifically because of indulgences being sold;
You could literally buy your way into heaven back in the day.
Doesn't sound right to me. And it certainly isn't moral.
Talk about an inconsistency in the Christian faith.
I don't think Jesus meant for the taking of lives or the
purchasing of absolution.


Now, if you'll kindly explain to me how saying that
"Because Atheists reason unhindered by what they stand to gain,
their choices truly reflect goodwill and not a fear of a higher power."
States that I deny my own existence. I don't.
"I think therefore I am." ~Renee Descartes

One certainly doesn't need moral absolutes to be moral.
There are such things as Moral Relativists, Secular Humanists,
etc.
What you're talking about is the absense of a brain.
Any human being with half the ability to think before said human
acts is bound to know by experience that there are going to be
rammifications, consequences for those actions.
You said it yourself, if you really believe it that is,
"every human does this [make decisions] whether atheist or not,
some with a bigger picture in mind."
If you go about ransacking and rioting as you please,
someone's going to get angry with you and there will be
consequences; that's natural law.

George Carlin:
"Personally, when it comes to rights, I think one of two
things is true. I think either we have unlimited rights
or we have no rights at all.
Personally I lean toward unlimited rights,
I feel for instance I have the right to do anything I please.
But, if i do something you don't like, I think you have the right to kill me."

And the sad part is it happens, truth be told.
If you really think that law enforcers, faced with Godlessness
would really go about releasing every single inhibition?
They would just up and start beating prinsoners at random
because it made them feel good?
For crying out loud, some of them do it already!
And these are men of God? Men of the law? Not good...
So much for absolute moral values.

Verbatim from wikipedia
"In the UK, Ian Tomlinson was filmed by an American tourist
apparently being hit with a baton and then pushed to the
loor, as he walked home from work during the 2009 G-20 London
summit protests. Tomlinson then collapsed and died.
Although he was arrested on suspicion of manslaughter,
the officer who allegedly assaulted Tomlinson was released
without charge."

So you see you don't need to worry about people living out
their desires of self gratification... it already happens.
The only difference is people hide behind authority and
legislation to do bad things.

And you're right about one thing, laws change to suit needs.
People can abuse laws. But if laws never changed, slavery
would still be legal--I don't think God would like that very much.
I only ever brought up law because it was mentioned
"...jurisprudence reveals an absolute standard of morality..."
It doesn't. Laws change and you agree.


On living up to Christianity's absolute moral standards...
Its one thing to admit that no one's perfect. Its another to
disregard completely the tenets put forth, and deliberately
break those laws on the basis that "no one's perfect."
So because you can't be perfect you've given up trying?
And atheists being in denial that they can't be perfect?
Half the atheists I know don't believe in perfection unless
its written in numbers and complex notation. Why would they
be in denial about something they don't believe in?
Perfection is for theists.

You speak of a standard, but I don't ever recall God taking a
stand on abortion, slavery, or gay marriage. If you can find
one, assuming you read the bible (I don't), I'd like to hear
what it has to say. I wonder if the bible covers cloning?

The general trend of laws changing is for the good.
Woman have suffrage, slavery is illegal, and races have
seen a dramatic increase in equality.
Who knows, someday we might let gays love and governments be
secular.

Where pedopiles go wrong is that they infringe upon the well
being of others. Remember "Do unto others"? I'm pretty sure
a gay man's husband is cool with his partner being intimate.
I'm pretty sure the kid is not ok with the old timer copping
a feel.
There's a lot to be said for consensuality.
If a gay man were to rape another, I'd be the first one in line
to say "throw the book at him."

As for well known atheists bringing "world-death",
I'll leave you with the burden of proof on that one.
Atheists are the largest minority that have yet to receive
social acceptance. And its getting about time.

 
theudas
Dec 13, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

I have been doing well thanks, hope you have as well.

Murder as always wrong? Well technically we murder animals for food, in the past humans have murdered other humans as a retribution for crimes or in self defense. I personally have a standard by which I do my best to cherish all life, but this standard is not globally shared. The existence of people who do what we consider to be horrid things, but find no fault themselves shows that our standards are different than theirs. The world is no so black and white, but heres an example that has less emotional attachment.

As a Christian do you believe that Gods Standards are absolute? This includes telling lies.
As an absolute standard, Lying should be wrong regardless of circumstance. Agree or disagree?

“then there is no binding reason why I should not go and
do what ever I please, even if it 'hurts' other people. Because
it is good for me. “ → but there are consequences. Even if you killed and felt no remorse, there would be legal consequences in our current system.


The atheist must affirm that there is no ultimate point to reality. This is nihilism.
→ I disagree. I am not a nihilist. That said the term “atheist” is widely used and tends to hold different meaning to different people. When I describe myself as atheist, I’m only using the term to indicate that I do not believe in a god or gods because I see no convincing arguments, or actual evidence for such a beings existence. Despite not believing in a God, and despite not recognizing an absolute purpose, I see purpose as subjective. This is how you and I could live two very different lives, with two very different outcomes, yet feel as if we have lived fulfilling, meaningful lives.

You must also recognize that Nihilism is used by different people who use it for different things. There might be someone who identifies as such and claims the only purpose there is, is subjective, yet another person who Identifies as one says that there can be no meaning or purpose (be it objective or subjective in Nihilism. → labels help us identify a basic idea, but they are not 100% effective. For instance, you identify as a Christian, yet I’m sure I can talk to 50 different Christians and get 50 different conflicting definitions on what a true Christian is

“Where is the dignity and integrity in dogmatically claiming there is NO God and not being able to support the claim?” → Well that depends on the context. For instance if someone were to say that there is no chance, not even the slightest that a god or being like a god could exist and offers no proof then I would disagree as that argument needs backing up, just like the claim for being absolutely certain that there is a god.

Of course if we’re looking at a specific religion, I might be able to claim with a high level of certainty that the god in question does not exist because of contradictions about the nature of the god, or the holy book itself.

If we’re talking about a God in general, then my claim that “I don’t believe” doesn’t really need to have much aside from pointing out that currently “there is no evidence that prove the existence of a god. We don’t start off believing, though upbringing, learning, experience, etc. we have beliefs. The default position is not to believe until ample evidence is presented, or though upbringing and experience (which is not really something we can objectively rely on as it varies from person to person.

“but why should it offend you? For what is dignity and integrity if morals are relative? “
→ Dignity and integrity describe a persons ethics, conduct, etc. Suggesting that since morals are relative these terms are meaningless sis false, and it does not justify the insult. For instance, the term Gay has multiple meanings. If I said you were gay, and ment it as an insult, is the excuse “Well in some contexts it means happy” adequate?

Secondly, define “relative morality” as this also has multiple meanings, the way you talk about it I envision a Person A consciously decides their morals, person B does the same, you cant critique either one because its relative. → to which I would say this does not exist.



 
pastthefuture
Dec 15, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
If you look at the brain you will see electro-chemical activity. If you look closer you will see amino-acids. If you look even closer you will see individual atoms.

The brain is made of matter and is no different than anything else constructed from the elements of the periodic table.

God is a human creation, not the other way around.

 
againstthecurrents
Dec 14, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Atheism is not a philosophy or set of ethics. It is a rejection of religion to differing degrees. Without Religion atheism would not exist, it is an anti-thesis. The basis of atheism requiers a God or religion to reject as you cannot believe in nothing as nothing cannot be described as something.

 
againstthecurrents
Dec 14, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

If Athiests say they do not know what happens after death what makes them any different from a Christian?
No Christian knows what the afterlife is like. The only thing that seperates them is the fact that an Athiest can tell you what they don't think is after death...

 
pastthefuture
Dec 15, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

My point is that objective reality exists independently of the human mind. God is merely a subjective concept. Are we to assume that mind is secondary to matter in one universal sense but not in another?

(To suggest that this does not prove that there is no God implies that we're God's mechanical play toys, nothing more. (God must be the ultimate solipsist.))

 
alexcarrier
Dec 17, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Individualeleven

Atheists aren't bound to science, but most like it.

Atheists do not collectively claim to not believe
in God based on scientific facts, but it
certainly helps.

It is impossible to prove or disprove god
God is all powerful, he can therefore make it
impossible to prove that God exists. He can
do this because, being all powerful, he can
defy reason, he can do anything.
It is impossible to prove whether or not
an omnipotent being exists.

science doesn't disprove god, it disproves
the claims of the bible, disproving the only
supporting text that says god exists.

If a purpose given by a higher power is a meaning
of life, and it so happens that no god exists,
then that would mean there is no meaning to life.
Some atheists are existentialists; they give
their lives meaning themselves.
Some atheists are nihilists; they don't believe
life has meaning.
You cannot say that an atheist believes life has
meaning or not.

Infinity means "goes on forever" don't talk
about not having enough room in something that
has infinite room, its illogical. Furthermore,
time is an expression of change, its irrelevant
to space.

What are you talking about when you say an
infinite universe can't support itself forever?
That makes no sense. Explain please.

Granted, science does not have the answer for
the cause of the big bang. But science never
claimed to have the answer to everything.
The theory was reached by tracing back the motions
of the universe. The Big Bang is as far back
as science goes... for now.
If we still functioned on a belief system to
explain life, we'd still believe the earth was
flat, we'd still believe in heliocentricity,
and many christians would have us believe that
the earth was only a few thousand years old,
which it isn't.

Religion has hindered science along many of its
very helpful and insightful steps as to explaining
the questions we have about ourselves. And if
anyone truly wants the answers, they would do
well to see that time and time again, religious
figures have fought with science and have been
wrong. Christian beliefs and science contradict,
Many believe the earth is 6000 years old. It is
not.
I'm finding that the bible never really claims
the earth is 6000 years old. It does say the
earth took six days to create.
Here's a few questions: If god is omnipotent why did
it take six days? why did he rest on the seventh?
Did he need to rest, or did he just feel like it?
What's going on here?
And what is the significance of christians taking
it upon themselves to explain what God meant?
Was the bible not written by men? Do men not
make mistakes? That would mean there are mistakes
in the bible. Furthermore there are multiple
versions of the bible...

I would like my opponents to pick a single
correct version and quote from it when explaining
god, so that we might see how the only indication
of his existence (beyond heresay) AKA the bible,
supports your arguments.
If you say that you cannot pick a single version
then please explain why, as the bible is supposed
to explain many things, one of them being the
existence of God. If god wrote the bible, that
is circular logic, if man wrote the bible, there
is room for error, and room for interpretation
which means many of the details will be lost
in translation.
If there are different versions than I am confused.
Why the revision? Wasn't god clear enough the
first time? I'm sure it wasn't written in english
either, should you learn Hebrew so that you might
eliminate errors of translation? Or Greek so that
you might read the new testament?
This telephone game is shakey grounds on which to
build so confident a faith.

Christians cannot affirm the truth of the
beginning and what happens after death; they
have faith. This is part of being christian.
You must have faith in God and not not question
him (double negative) but rather believe that his
written word is truth. The bible isn't proof of
anything, its a declaration of what is believed.
Let's make one thing very clear; to believe is
to think something is true without quite having
proof, to think something is true with good reason
or proof is to know.

So to get into heaven I must believe in God and
accept Jesus Christ as my saviour? For what
purpose? What if I'm a good person but reject
God? Am I going to hell?
It is impossible to prove or disprove god.

It's good that I've found a christian who
believes you can find morales in a simple
excercises like putting yourself in someone's shoes.
It's interesting that it's perfectly plausible for
someone who has never heard of god or the bible
or of christian teaching can be moral.
It's obvious God or Jesus or the bible aren't
required to have morals. I rest my case on that
one.


I never said Martin Luther King.
And I agree. Some Christians have grossly
misrepresented what the bible seems to stand for.
And shame on them for sullying your relgion.


And so, from the verses you've selected for me,
which you've asked me not to do, I'll try to see
proof in what the bible says. But before I do
that I'd like to commend you, but re-affirm a
point I made earlier. You certainly cannot
take thou shall kill perfectly seriously.
It must be meant to have been interpreted as
though shall not kill other men, or else one
could not kill insects, animals, or plants.
So the bible must certainly have to be
interpreted. Dangerous grounds for proving
anything and probably why christians don't seem
in agreement over certain things.
How does one follow the teachigns of the bible,
if it's open to interpretation?
It leaves me with a feeling that God is in the
heart, and the mind. God is not a reality.

Moving on. "Abortion"
I read many of the passages that were in the
article you provided. None except "thou shall
not kill" really struck me as a sign that the
ultimate moral is that abortion is wrong.
But you can't kill a fetus, so explain how
christian militants can kill other men?
Your argument does not dismiss mine.
Furthermore, many christians believe that
abortion is an option. Are they wrong?
Clearly they are if thou shall not kill is
what Fr. Frank A. Pavone considers the word
of God on abortion.

I never said I had to read the bible. I only ever
said that I had to argue for my opponents views
if I truly wanted to know which side I was on.
How many christians have read the bible?
I'm willing to bet less than half. Much less.
Half is being very, very generous.
Yet, by your logic, how are they able to argue
for christianity if they must read the bible
to do so?

You don't need to know everything the president
knows to do your civil duty. In fact its
impossible. God asks you abstain from killing.
End of story. Explain how God was wrong.

********

Carlodog

Atheists can not and do not claim to be able to
explain everything. If you claim to know it all,
you'll never learn. So because someone can't
provide an answer to the beginning of the
universe, that proves they are nihilistic?
Wrong. There are those atheists who find life
has purpose, existentialists often find the
meaning to their unique lives is determined by
themselves.

Nihilism does not mean suicide.

How is "Thou shall not kill." misguided?
Explain.

Your co-debater has already shown that morals
can exist without God. Simple reason is enough.
"This hurts me therefore it hurts others."
Ergo, don't hurt others."

Goodness can be reasoned and in fact is ingrained
in intelligence. They go hand in hand.
Goodness is not defined by utilitarianism.
Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill already got
plenty of heat for that one.
Goodness is defined by moral actions.
If you reason that something will be good,
and your logic is sound, you will do a good
thing. Which is why it is important to have
intelligence.

The laws of nature have ingrained through
evolution a natural tendancy to abstain from
acts that could get us killed or attacked.
You do not provoke unecessarily, that is
instinct. Its in you, and it isn't god-given.
You will refrain from things that would put you
in danger by instinct to avoid danger. You are
geared for survival. Its what we who have
survived natural selection do.
Some do it poorly, they may die. Bravery can
be acheived by overcoming your instincts with
reasoning and willpower. You will respect the
well being of others because you understand they
are like you. If you chose to disrespect others
you would quickly learn how illogial that is
and the consequences that come attached.

I dare you to act disrespectfully towards
everyone, at all time.
You will not survive it easily. You'll have
trouble keeping a job and few will want to help
you. And you need the help of others in this world,
we all do.

If you receive a benefit, think carefully about
any repercussions there might be, or consequences.
You'll soon know if you should take that action
or not.

You may find that there is no reason to respect
someone who has no values. You logic may be
flawed, but it may be right. Often actions have
good and bad results. There are rarely, if ever,
absolute results to an action (an action that is
only good or only bad.)
I would like to put this standard of goodness
to rest by saying that god is not needed to make
moral decisions, and that there are no absolutes.
As you say, what's good for one may be bad for the
other.

What are the requirements for passing through the
pearly gates?
And again, standards are not needed, if you follow
a standard long enough, it will eventually lead
you astray, you will end up doing more bad than
good and making a poor moral choice.
I assure you that you either believe it is moral
to kill or it isn't, and in doing so you
either believe that no matter the circumstance,
it can be moral to kill or (as the bible suggests)
you should never kill, that it is never moral.)
That is an absolute.
Pick a side.

Andagain, either you believe it is never ok to abort,
or it is always ok to abort. If the birth of the
child would kill the mother and you must make
the decision on that basis, what do you do?
What if the birth would kill them both?
Absolutes do not work.

I misunderstood what you meant when talking of
jurisprudence. If I'm right, you mean to say
that there are absolutes and law is striving to
develop laws that represent those absolutes.

But every culture has strived to formulate some forms
of rights? Maybe. Prove they have strived to
formulate laws for those inherent rights you
claim exist. Most certainly did establsh rights,
I just--again-- find myself disagreeing that it
was to work towards absolutes.

Define universal negative. Atheism has many,
many good supporting arugments. Prove otherwise.
Yes, you are right. God cannot be proven.

You're wrong in the end here.
You can adhere dogmatically to a belief
system that cannot be demonstrated;
you're doing it right now.


********

Individualeleven

Sine God cannot be proven or disproven,
atheism is, you're right, a belief.
(I wouldn't call it a system.)
It can exist without god but wouldn't have a
name. People would simply not believe in God.


********

againstthecurrents

I agree. I believe in a universe naturally
existing. That is to say, it came to be as we
know it in a natural way; by ordinary, normal
processes that occur regularly and can be
explained (though sometimes complicated) by the
formulation of laws.
I.E. the laws of physics, biology, etc.


********

Individualeleven

You are wrong. Science contradicts the bible.
The bible says God created man, science says
man evolved from existing life forms.
I agree with your explanation of a rejection
and a belief. Well said.

Prove your point. I argue the exact opposite.
There is more suggesting the absence of any
man-made god than there is for the existence
of one.


********

Individual eleven


You do not -know- anything, you believe. I must
stress this point. You have faith not knowledge.

There is no burden of proof, God is beyond
being able to be proved or disproved, by nature
of omnipotence.

I will not stick the burden of proving that god
exists on you or on me. I will ask you to back
up your statements with examples from the bible;
the foundation of your religion.

Your last sentence seems to contradict your first,
did I read incorrectly or did you call what you
claimed was knowledge at first, opinion in the end?
Please help me understand as I'm certain I've
misunderstood.



********

Against the current

Again, I agree. What happens after death can't
be known with certainty.

An atheist, again, is only obliged to believe
there is no God(s). They may have any other
number of beliefs.

If you lose your body you die, there are no
emotions. Prove atheists give up on feeling
good or bad.



********

Individualeleven

God did not create science, man did.
God did not create man, man is a product
of the universe.
Science is an attempt to explain various
aspect of the universe we live in.

Neither soul nor spirit exist in anything other
than the emotions that we feel via the experiences
we've creating involuntarily in our physical brains.

What would teaching in parables facilitate,
if there is no hope of understanding?


********

Carlodog

If there's anything to be said about the brain
and god, its that the brain evolved from a
previous, less effective model. God did not
create man. This does not prove, but suggests
the bible is wrong. The bible says god exists.
it is highly likely and very believable that
god does not exist.


********

Empiriocritic


I agree. A human can very closely represent
reality in the mind as far as needed to function.
A human will never see reality objectively as
it is.

To suggest that God is an objective reality is
theistic, to suggest God is objective is atheist.


********

Carlodog


The brain is a tangible physical organ.
The mind is a counsciousness representation
via the senses of the outside world
to the one viewing it.

You are bordering on a debate about determinism.
I am not sure I understand your argument.


********

Carlodog

I agree that there is no way of proving that God
is in the mind (and is subjective) only.

I certainly believe the mind cannot exist
independantly of a physical body.


********


I apologize for the delay, which caused an
unpleasantly lengthy response.

 
pastthefuture
Dec 17, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

No. I think the mind IS secondary to matter. Consciousness is a qualitative change produced from innumerable quantitative variables. As such, free will is essentially an illusion. So I believe that the mind cannot exist independently of the brain.

Thanks for drawing attention to where I can be clearer. It's helpful. Please bear with me as I attempt delineate this debate at length and argue my case.

The agnostic "conundrum" confronting us is that we ultimately don't know anything with absolute certainty. But epistemological problems can still be reduced to a simple formulation of possibilities and then weighed according to merit.

Either consciousness gives rise to matter or matter gives rise to consciousness. Another "middle of the road" position is that bodies are conduits for consciousness (or "souls"). This falls into the same consciousness/matter dichotomy unless both consciousness and matter are considered eternal.

The above paragraph encapsulates the two main lines in philosophy as well as a dualist alternative. In between lie various shades of agnosticism. (Belief in God as creator is consciousness giving rise to matter, as implied above.)

I'm hoping to better refine the main branches of debate and bring them to logical conclusions. I will define one term before I begin:

Concrete - constituting an actual thing; existing in a material or physical form; real or solid.

Is there objective truth?

I. Don't know with absolute certainty (--- Theories of knowledge)

A. Materialism

1. Reality is concrete
2. Everything must be concrete to be real
3. Therefore unreality is nothing
4. The universe is real
5. The universe came from something
6. This something had to be real to be something
7. The universe came from something real
8. What the universe came from is concrete

B. Idealism

1. Reality is perceived
2. I perceive
3. Perception is consciousness (or I must be conscious to perceive)
4. I am conscious
5. Therefore there is consciousness
6. Nothing else is known
7. At least consciousness exists
8. The rest, if it exists, may exist because of consciousness

B.i. Solipsist subtype

1. I am real
2. I perceive
3. I do not know if what I perceive is real
4. What I perceive could be my imagination
5. Only I am certainly real
6. No one else is real for certain
7. Therefore they could be imagined
8. I could be all that is real

C. Dualism

1. Reality has concrete and conscious characteristics
2. One reality is concrete
3. Another reality is conscious
4. Both realities coexist
5. These realities interact with each other

II. Know with absolute certainty (if existent)

A. God or gods (or consciousness)
1. with omnipotence; and/or
2. who created the universe(s), if this means knowing its/their objective truth

B. An advanced civilization
1. with omnipotence; and/or
2. who created our universe or others, if this means knowing its/their objective truth

I argue that materialism is the most reasonable theory of knowledge given that we don't know whether there is objective truth with absolute certainty. Idealism questions what we perceive and assumes consciousness exists, i.e. as something distinct from anything else (if there even is anything else). Materialism does not. It "assumes" we more or less perceive accurately, and that what we perceive is real and concrete. Therefore, the perceptions are based on real and concrete sensory organs. There is not a separate consciousness. It is a consequence of a concrete reality (which we are a part of). Idealism fails to explain the consistency in what we observe through our perceptions (which may or may not require sense organs). Materialism does not. It stands to reason that something that is real has consistency (otherwise "reality" would constantly change into another reality). Materialism embraces physics as a certain set of universal laws that allow structures to form, giving rise to our existence. Idealism maintains that if our perceptions only derive from our consciousness then we only know consciousness is real. So how do we know if math or physics even exist (outside ourselves)? Space and time have properties and are measurable. What we perceive (by observing) corresponds perfectly to these measurable properties of structures, as if they are real and concrete.

 
alexcarrier
Dec 17, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show


If a person does not know the purpose of
reality, they can still believe there is one...
...not that there is or needs to be.


When people find meaning in their lives, that
becomes the point. If Bob succeeds at saving
a single polar bear, beacause it is his self-given
purpose, he will find fufillment.
Even if Bob doesn't manage a single heroic deed,
the meaning of his life, for him, could be to try.
The point of finding meaning in one's life is
completely irrelevent to afterlife.
It has everything to do with satisfying a need
for meaning. Most people turn to religion for
that. Some people create their own meanings.
And some can even be void of purpose and have
no need whatsoever to entertain thoughts of
suicide.

Bottom line: there may or may not be a purpose,
but you cannot make the claime that a reality
void of purpose is invariably meaningless.
Meaning is, after all, subjective.

I fail to see how one of the ten founding principles
of your faith has nothing to do with this...
your faith.
If you find that answering how one enters heaven
is irrelevant however, I won't press the matter.

Good and Evil are subjective. I'll put it simply.
(What question does it beg??)
Circular logic is saying the bible says God exists
and God says the bible is right.

If an orangutan can procreate and his genes are the
best in his group, good for him. If man can
live in a society where fear and violence and
rape are discouraged, this is much better.
It functions far better because we spend less
time hating eachother and stealing wives and
more time progressing at living with efficacity.
Survival.


You're the one who's said nothing this time,
on abortion.
Why do my dilemmass help your argument?
They are challenging questions if you believe
in absolutes.
If it is not always right to take the same course
of action in every situation, it must mean that
morals are based on circumstance.
If you must develop absolutes for every scenario,
creating infinite absolutes, then they are not
absolutes. You are just wrongly abiding by
moral relativism.

Absolutes must have a finite number.

People debate abortion because their notions
of morality differ. Though it doesn't prove there
are no absolutes, it makes the case that contrary
to what you said, people do not
" live as though there are
absolute standards of morality".
It just isn't so.

We don't have inherent rights.
Laws were not created for a single purpose.
Laws get created to protect interests, people,
despots, the list goes on.
If rights protect inherent human rights,
why is it they can be taken away?
Your argument makes no case that laws have anything
to do with inherent human rights.
Your absolutes would exists whether law did or not,
how do laws have anything to do with that?
Why is it important anyways, whether laws
protect inherent humans rights or dont?
How does this prove there are absolutes?
Prove there are absolutes.
There are no absolutes and man has created laws
for various purposes, the most important of which
is to create order in chaos.

If you're saying that believing there is no God
is a universal negative, then its not a statment
of fact, its a belief.
Furthermore I would add that universal negatives
do not require omniscience.
To use a very simple example, I can say:
All bald eagles are animals.
No bald eagle is not an animal.
Its extremely simple, but its true.
I've just stated that no bald eagle you will ever
find will not be an animal, but I'm not omniscient.

And God's existence cannot be proven or disproven.
I think Christians should agree with me on at least this.

 
pastthefuture
Dec 17, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
For the sake of getting back into the debate let me address individualelven and again repeat the framework I see for our arguments. I wrote these notes anticipating a refutation of individualeleven before I read carlodog's response and wrote something else:

consciousness existing without structure
this doesn't make sense to me because i don't see how consciousness can exist without structure giving rise to it
if it does have structure then the question remains of whether structure or consciousness is primary, which gives rise to the other?
or do both exist?
(but if that were the case, then how would one exist without having been created by the other)

How can there be something that is not quantifiable, measurable or observable? There can not. That "something" is not. It does not exist. There is nothing outside of objective reality. What is real is real. What isn't real is (unreal and) imaginary.

(definitions of words)
"unknown" = supernatural?
you are mincing words
the ultimate (fundamental) question is still which has primacy over the other, matter or consciousness? if god is a conscious creator then that is saying consciousness comes first and is primary, so matter is the result of consciousness (i.e. idealism)

black hole unknown
is it supernatural beyond the event horizon
is there an "entity beyond" the event horizon
that could have infinite substance or none at all
because it is unknown?

In one instance we have a question of where matter went
In another we have a question of where it came from
Does that mean there is a spiritual medium as middleman
Or that the laws of reality are responsible for these events?

Something from nothing
What is reality
If not based on concrete laws which explain our physics
then it is not based on anything
There must be something giving rise to something
Not something from nothing

god something?
not physical,
if physical, then not a God but made from constituent elements
Then how a god
Are we then gods?
If God did not create what He is made of, then is what He is made of responsible for His existence? Or do both eternally coexist?

 
pastthefuture
Dec 18, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

It should be clear by now how I view the mind and nature. The mind is a product of nature. (Look at the blue color of the side I am arguing.) If you refer to the definitions of subjective and objective it shows how God is a subjective concept. There is no evidence. Just like there is no evidence for a purple toaster floating in space between the earth and the sun. You can believe what you want. Maybe it's there. I can't be ABSOLUTELY certain it's not (short of probing every cubic foot of empty space between here and the sun). But an opinion that it is there isn't just based on insufficient evidence like a conjecture, it's based on none, zilch.

I screwed up, I think, on the whole objective truth question. I like the definition from http://atheism.about.com/od/philosophyepistemology/a/ObjectiveTruth.htm:

The idea of truth as objective is simply that no matter what we believe to be the case, some things will always be true and other things will always be false. Our beliefs, whatever they are, have no bearing on the facts of the world around us. That which is true is always true - even if we stop believing it and even if we stop existing at all.

I can't think of any good argument against that. If there were any then that would go against whether there is objective truth. The next question is if there is objective truth (and I would say resoundingly so) what is it? That is where I was going with the theories of knowledge. Theories of knowledge imply there is an objective truth. The question then becomes what that truth is. I propose materialism. I admit that we ULTIMATELY don't know the objective truth with 100% absolute certainty, but we shouldn't just throw our hands in the air. Otherwise we'd all be agnostics lamenting on the finite limits of our knowledge. I maintain that some theories of knowledge have more merit than others. Wouldn't you agree that solipsism is ridiculous? You know that you are engaged in a debate with me but I don't know you are. You could just be a mental projection of mine that doesn't exist. See where this is going? There are logical arguments for and against what the objective truth is. There is a reality and "some things will always be true and other things will always be false."

 
pastthefuture
Dec 19, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

It can't be "proven," only compared to other theories. The other theories lead to very bizarre places reductio ad absurdum. This is because their initial premises start with reality as something subjectively perceived, rather than objectively based.

That reality is physical is synonymous with how our patterns of interaction with it lead us to treat it as if it is true. If I put my keys on the coffee table and a magazine falls over them, the fact that I forget where I put them doesn't change that they are on the coffee table. I may have thought I put them in my bedroom, but alas, that is not where they are. The reality is what it is no matter what I think. I find this reasonable grounds to support physicalism as a philosophy. Saying there is an objective reality regardless of what we think is saying that reality is independent. Our thoughts don't influence it, though our actions will. That is a very fair premise.

A defense attorney does not have to prove her client innocent. The plaintiff must prove him guilty. That's the burden of proof. Proving guilt is like proving God. Guilt is the positive burden of proof. We don't know that the client is not guilty. But there is no burden on proving a negative here in a court of law.

That's how evidence works. Without evidence of something, it is fair to say that it is mere speculation or opinion. I don't have the burden of proof in disproving it. It hasn't been proved in the first place. Until such evidence is presented, my premise is not unproven.

I am sorry but I have not seen where you have proven anything. The world around me is evidence for my first premise. There is no evidence in the world supporting your "raw feel" subjective premise. Intuition ignores appearances and looks inward for some elusive truth not outwardly evident.

 
pastthefuture
Dec 21, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

Actually, nature can explain itself without the need for a creator. This is not an issue of subtracting out the "unexplained" and leaving God as a common denominator.

"[O]bjective morality, ultimate purpose, intelligent design..." These are not "effects" of a higher being. They are teleological interpretations, not at all based in science. The teleological argument breaks down and fails to prove the existence of God.

Temporal logic is not best suited to answer the deeper questions of nature. Time is simply a dimension intertwined with other dimensions (space). It is one part of a fabric. Dismantled, the time component becomes no different than any other spatial dimension. It extends in two directions. Therefore, the nature of reality requires no boundary.

 
pastthefuture
Dec 22, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

Alright then. I'm not sure anyone can actually prove God does not exist outside the mind. (Can you think of any way of proving that? Let me know if you can.) I mean, if you could examine the whole universe down to the planck length I don't see how it would prove your belief in God wrong. There would be no sign of God, but absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, as you say. What I demonstrate is that our senses allow us to observe, test, and describe reality. (You yourself believe in an objective reality.) Our good ideas correspond well with our experiences. It is the inherent consistency in a physical reality that makes it alluring. Of course there is wiggle room for philosophers to counterpose their subjective ideas of self, or sensation, as a thing in itself, on top of this. The same goes for God, be He consciousness, or something else entirely that is neither physical nor conscious, from whence both derive. These are beliefs. Doubting our senses, as if we are only seeing our shadows in a cave, is turning our back to reality as our sciences know it. A totally idealistic view of 'subjective experience' will only go so far. It will fail to account for the consistency of reality as a thing in itself. If reality is projected by each conscious being as a manifestation of God then we'll have examples like the picture frames of one conscious entity throwing a baseball and the picture frames of another conscious entity catching the baseball. The collective projection is what makes reality. Does this mean that if a tree falls in a forrest, but no one is there to see or hear it, it never actually falls? That would defy our understanding of reality as a thing in itself. Given the instrumental role of reality "outside" ourselves it is best to treat it as such. In doing so, the subjective notion of soul is not necessary for understanding it. We can exist without souls. The nature of reality, as we understand it, allows this. The ramification would be that free will is an illusion. However, anyone is still free to believe in free will. Anyone is still free to believe in the soul.

I don't mean to be confusing. A main point is that by taking reality as we perceive it, as something real unto itself, it is unnecessary to go further with subjective beliefs. If there is an "objective" consciousness that exists unto itself, it appears to be outside this reality or at least completely denied to our senses within this reality. Physical reality excludes mind as its own thing and can explain and describe our experiences brought to us via our sense organs. I think Richard Dawkins successfully argued that God is unlikely in The God Delusion. But he does not close off the possibility, no matter how incurious he finds it. Stephen Hawking teamed up with Leonard Mlodinow to show that the universe can spontaneously create itself. While science can not entirely refute God's existence, it can prove that God is not necessary to explain the universe's existence. Science is getting ever closer to the grand unified theory of everything. I believe it will get there. When it does the whole of reality will be understood at the most fundamental level. Such elegance will need no blessing, as it will simply be, and our existences will echo through the vastness of infinite possibilities.

 
Liz Dowens
Jan 12, 2012
1 convinced
Rebuttal
I want to try to rebut carlodog's December 12th's arguments:

"To start of with they must affirm the eternality of the universe."

--- Why should they? Nobody knows whether our universe has always existed or will exist forever, which means there's no logical necessity to state nor to proof its alleged eternality. If you are implying that religion better describes reality because it explains why the universe is eternal, you should first prove that it's eternal, and you obviously can't: nobody has been or will be around long enough to tell, and even the Bible sets a precise starting point for pretty much everything. Actually, the Big Bang is usually taken by non-Christian theologists to resemble the Bible too closely, and that's why some think it's a suspicious scientific model. So, in this issue atheists and Christians actually agree, cosmologically (and broadly) speaking.

"For the cause must be immaterial, non-spacial, and timeless. Yet, even now [atheists] cannot produce a
plausible cause that matches these prerequisites."

--- They cannot and they actually should not: immaterial, non-spatial and timeless is basically the (correct) definition of "nothing", which is precisely what existed before the Big Bang (if we accept it as a theory). The real trouble is for religion, which postulates a point in time when everything came into existence with the exception of the Christian deity. First, THAT's inconsistent (two different standards, one for the deity, another for everything else) and, second, if not even time existed until it was created by the deity, one has to wonder how it can then be claimed that the deity existed *before* everything else (and so that this deity could then go on and causally create everything), since there was no "before" and "after" (time was "turned off"). Without any measure of time, stating that a god already existed AT THE TIME of creation is, at the very best, confusing (if you think about it, the line "In the beginning, there was God" is extremely ironic: so, there was already the "beginning"? What did God do exactly, then?)

"Most atheists affirm that there is such a thing as evil, or affirm evil is in the world. Yet, they have no absolute standard of goodness in which they can discern what evil actually is."

--- I am afraid that's incorrect: the fact that there's no "divine way to climb a tree" doesn't mean that a tree can be climbed in ANY way (for instance, you still need it to have branches not too far apart from each other). This means that the "right way to do things" can usually be defined according to the set task and goals, and formally stated as some combination of cost-effectiveness and sustainability criteria (the best solution allows to get the best results for the longest time at the lowest cost. After that, it's only a matter of measuring and comparing, and not even a god would be able to improve a mathematically correct balance sheet -changing any number would result in an incorrect result, which is ungodly!). If you accept a market economy, you are already a witness to the natural standard of goodness that arises in any self-organizing system: benefit maximization.

If the preceding premises are accepted, your next arguments fall as a result.

--- "In the end the atheist must affirm that life is utterly meaningless, the only consistent atheist is a nihilist, but no person lives their life as though it is meaningless."

I agree that people want their life to be meaningful, but I don't agree with the conclusion that atheism implies relativism and, therefore, leads to meaninglessness (by the way, the fact that different religions exist shows that religion too can be relativistic: what's sacred for Christians doesn't have to be for e.g. Buddhists). As far as I can see, the difference between believers and non-believers is mostly about attitude: the former believe there's meaning in their lives and take religion to be that meaning, whereas the latter believe there's meaning in their lives but don't think they've found it yet (at least, not in religion!). I think it can be reduced to a phenomenon of belonging, in the same way as some children are more likely to stay close to where they were born and the people and the ideas they grew with, and others are simply less likely. I don't see any problem with either approach, some days I feel like my life's meaning is fulfilled and other days I feel I need to find new meaning. What would be an oversimplification is to think that one always feels the same way: even religious people go through faith crises and that doesn't mean they suddenly become ruthless assassins.

 
pastthefuture
Dec 15, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

Those three points are a fairly good approximation of my argument. I am interested in what you find fundamentally problematic and presumptive about them. (And jeez, this empiriocritic guy is like my polar opposite.) Let me clarify what I meant with the rest.

I don't think that the mind is not secondary to matter. I was being rhetorical and explored what it would mean if premise #1 and #2 were correct while #3 was not. I think that matter is primary and the mind is subordinate to, and exists because of, physical processes.

You have asked how objective reality existing independently of the human mind, which exists as a part, and consequence, of that same reality, disproves God (who has never been proven in the first place BTW). As I see it, a purely physical reality is just that. God is removed by default. However, I think what you are getting at is that my argument falls short and makes a logical leap. I didn't step back and consider all possibilities for the big bang. There appear to be two:

1. The Universe set itself into motion (as a consequence of a bigger objective reality); or
2. God created the Universe.

Which of these caused our Universe to exist? Essentially this a question of whether the "big bang" has a natural or supernatural origin. Assuming premises #1 and #2 are correct it seems safe to assume that # 3 is more logical. Otherwise there is one (or more if you are polytheistic) supernatural nonphysical entity (without substance) that exists and can create a physical reality (with substance).

 
pastthefuture
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Now let me restate the framework I think this debate ultimately break downs to, and hope to argue within:


Topic - Is there objective truth?

I. We don't know with absolute certainty- Theories of knowledge

A. - Materialism -
1. Reality is concrete
2. Everything must be concrete to be real
3. Therefore unreality is nothing
4. The universe is real
5. The universe came from something
6. This something had to be real to be something
7. The universe came from something real
8. What the universe came from is concrete

B. - Idealism -
1. Reality is perceived
2. I perceive
3. I must be conscious to perceive
4. I am conscious
5. Therefore there is consciousness
6. Nothing else is known
7. At least consciousness exists
8. The rest, if it exists, may exist because of consciousness

B.i. - Idealism continued - Solipsist subtype
1. I am real
2. I perceive
3. I do not know if what I perceive is real
4. What I perceive could be my imagination
5. Only I am certainly real
6. No one else is real for certain
7. Therefore they could be imagined
8. I could be all that is real

C. - Dualism -
1. Reality has concrete and conscious characteristics
2. One reality is concrete
3. Another reality is conscious
4. Both realities coexist
5. These realities interact with each other

II. What would know with absolute certainty?

A. - God or gods (or consciousness) -
1. with omnipotence; and/or
2. who created the universe(s) and knows the applicable objective truth

B. - An advanced enough civilization -
1. with omnipotence; and/or
2. who created our universe and/or others and knows the applicable objective truth(s)

 
pastthefuture
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

I rebut myself on IIA(2) and B(2) because a creator of a universe may not know with absolute certainty that there is objective truth, or if so what it is. (For instance, the creation of a virtual universe with complex intelligent and self-aware virtual beings would only require writing enough algorithmic formulas (or laws) to give rise to the beings' emergence and existence. Not every, or necessarily any, algorithmic formula or permutation of such a universe needs to be known to anyone involved in the project. One may merely provide a piece, substitute it with something else, or alter it in the basic collective puzzle of creation. There may be many creators, replacers and alterers. There may also be many variations beyond the minimal necessary algorithmic formulas that still give rise to beings. A created universe may not reflect the mother universe's laws, but the mother universe's laws allowed the baby universe's to exist and were necessary for its creation.)

II A1 and B1 are correct (if true) but I would embellish and elaborate them. If everything can be known, then omnipotence is the maximum requirement for knowing whether or not there is objective truth with certainty. If one is omnipotent one knows everything. If objective truth exists it would be something. Something is part of everything. So the omnipotent one would know if there is objective truth (and if so what it is) unless it cannot be known. If it cannot be known it cannot exist because it would be nothing. If it does not exist there is no objective truth.

Is there a minimal requirement (short of omnipotence) for knowing whether or not there is objective truth with certainty? Perhaps enough wherewithal is all that is required. If so you can know enough of what you need to know, to know whether or not there is an objective truth with certainty, meaning that you would know that what you don't know will not affect your knowing the answer to the question.

 
alexcarrier
Dec 18, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Individualeleven

If you agree that you cannot prove or disprove God,
I won't press that matter.

Science claims man evolved, man was not created
by God.
The bible is not the most accurate way of dating
things. I'm not sure any clarification, on your
part, would help your argument either.

Radiometric dating works just fine, the T-Rex
"Sue" can be found in Chicago, IL and is approx.
67 million years old.
I found this article
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/306/5703/1884.full.pdf
Was this the one about the Grand Cayon Experiment?
What is this and what does it have to do with
carbon dating?


Having understood "infinite universe".
Prove that matter and energy are finite.

In the past, we didn't know that space existed,
we thought it was just earth.
In the past we didn't know other solar systems
existed.
Now we are at the stage where it is believed
Everything seems to have eminated from one
central explosion.
There is no explanation for what caused it ...yet.

You seem to think science needs to explain
everything before it can be considered fact.

When it was discovered we were part of a solar
system, we didn't know what was beyond that, or
the cause for it.
Now it's believed that everything was balled up
into a highly concentrated point about 13 billion
years ago.
Just because we don't know what happened before,
you're going to dismiss this theory?
If we'd done that with heliocentrism we'd be
wrong to this very day.

Where does the bible say the earth is spherical?
The new testament was written after Aristotle,
so it must be in the old testament.

What scientific knowledge did the bible give us
before secular world did?

All you're saying is that the bible was transcribed
with a lot of effort, and that God assisted the
writting of those holy books. The bible asserts
God, God asserts the bible. That's circular logic.
How can you praise the remarkable message of the bible
when it clearly states "Thou shall not kill"
and yet that commandment is disobeyed deliberately
on a constant basis.
Seems to me Christians are inconsistant in their
faith.

You're right, you claim faith. And where does
your faith come from? From the bible and the
passed down words of others.
If those are full of holes, and are above
being contested by fact, why do you believe it?
What reason do you have to believe what you do?
The truth is that you're not using reason.
If I ask you "Why do you believe in God?"
You're answer should be an opinion or
"I'm not sure."

Why did the laws of hell change? When did they?
Why would someone who has never had the chance to
hear the word of God, and knows nothing of God's
existence go to hell? Makes no sense to me.

So the truth of reality depends on the subject?
That's called subjective. Which means God is
in the mind.

War is murder.
Prove otherwise.
The bible says you shouldn't kill, what makes
going off to kill another human (whether for reasons
political, economic, or social) not murder?
Murder is murder. It is to kill with premeditated
intent.
This is hypocrisy.

I find it very, very, very hard to swallow that
aborting a fetus just weeks old is murder,
while killing living human beings is not.
This is blatant hypocrisy.

But most Christians don't study their faith,
and yet the believe. If you believe in something
that you've created (not saying God is man-made but rather...- )
because you've misunderstood what was being explained,
then you are going to hell because you don't
believe in the Jesus Christ of the bible, but rather
one of your imagination.

You're saying that the context of "Thou shall not kill"
is sparsed out over the entire bible
I have to read the entire bible to understand
what was meant here?

So I decided to Read Exodus 20 to get some much needed
context.


1 And God spake all these words, saying,

2 I am Jehovah thy God, who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.

3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

4 Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.

5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them, for I Jehovah thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, upon the third and upon the fourth generation of them that hate me,

6 and showing lovingkindness unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

7 Thou shalt not take the name of Jehovah thy God in vain; for Jehovah will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

9 Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work;

10 but the seventh day is a sabbath unto Jehovah thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:

11 for in six days Jehovah made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore Jehovah blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

12 Honor thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long in the land which Jehovah thy God giveth thee.

13 Thou shalt not kill.

14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.

15 Thou shalt not steal.

16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is thy neighbor’s.

18 And all the people perceived the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the voice of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they trembled, and stood afar off.

19 And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear; but let not God speak with us, lest we die.

20 And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you, and that his fear may be before you, that ye sin not.

21 And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God was.

22 And Jehovah said unto Moses, Thus thou shalt say unto the children of Israel, Ye yourselves have seen that I have talked with you from heaven.

23 Ye shall not make other gods with me; gods of silver, or gods of gold, ye shall not make unto you.

24 An altar of earth thou shalt make unto me, and shalt sacrifice thereon thy burnt-offerings, and thy peace-offerings, thy sheep, and thine oxen: in every place where I record my name I will come unto thee and I will bless thee.

25 And if thou make me an altar of stone, thou shalt not build it of hewn stones; for if thou lift up thy tool upon it, thou hast polluted it.

26 Neither shalt thou go up by steps unto mine altar, that thy nakedness be not uncovered thereon.


I forgot that it wasn't okay to work on Sundays.
What's with the sacrifices of burnt offerings?
I really like that God doesn't want hewn stone.
Seems he likes nature the way it is.
By the way, if we're not supposed to make images
of God, why is he a he in the good book?
Seriously, what's going on here?


You can't claim to have knowledge of something for
which you have no proof. Your belief is opinion.

A Christian can believe a scientific theory,
no problem. Christianity itself cannot advance
science, but Christians can do that.
Christianity (the bible) has nothing to offer
any domain of science.

A theory yet unproven does not excuse the bible
contradicting a currently held-to-be-true
scientific theory. Evolution has compelling
evidence, what does God have?

When the bible originated, it made no reference
to scientific processes. Man made science that
is undebatable.
Your strong argument here would be that God
created man, and man created science, therefore
God indirectly created science. God hasn't created
much of anything lately except living creatures.
On that point; what part of birth does God
contribute to? The soul? Because it seems like
he isn't doing much that genetic donors can't
already do themselves.

I'm glad God isn't against humans advancing their
knowledge. Because the more we advance it, the more
it seems religion is what flat-earth theory will be.


********

Individualeleven

Thank you very much for the, quite pertinent, link.
This seems to further my opinion that the bible
is full of translations that don't represent what
the bible originally meant.

It can't be a literal six days. On day 1 there
was no such thing as a day. I agree with the text.

Even if these days were not 24 hours days,
what is the bible trying to tell us by saying
this?

We still work on a seven day week.
I think that this is explaining how time should be organized.
It is educating about a basic human tool to understand
the universe: the calendar.
If God rested on the seventh day, it is because the
bible is trying to explain to a people of an older time how
to effectively organize and apply our time and
energy. Its probably a tradition that was adopted
because it worked well.
(I think if we worked every day of the week we'd
have gone mad a long time ago.)

That's all the bible has ever been;
a good guide to life for older times.
Nowadays we don't need the bible to teach us
how to live, not necessarily anyways.
It sure does seem to have some good morals in it.
But God doesn't exist, and we can do without the
perplexities of having to tailor our existence
to an age-old book.

 
neobrainless
Dec 20, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Having read most of the arguments, I feel the Atheist side has been pretty well represented thus far, and most of the arguments are bubbling along nicely. As a newcomer to the site I'm impressed how polite it is staying!

The only point that makes me need to comment is all this about the universe being meaningless, therefore it follows that the only thing a nihilist should waste time thinking about is suicide.

Personally I believe there is no god. No higher meaning to mine or anyone else's life. No meaning to the universe as a whole. This thought positively EXCITES me! My life has the purpose and meaning I choose. What could be more exciting?! Especially considering this life is the only one I get - I really have to make the most of it!

As for the comment that without some over-arching meaning there would be chaos, how does that figure? Humans are genetically programmed to social creatures, we naturally enjoy working together. That's why there isn't chaos, not because we're working together for some grand plan, we're all just making the best of the life we have while we still have it.

Apologies for not joining the argument with proper reasoned points, but you others are doing a good job with that, and I'm unconvinced there is a solid logical argument for my points (I've not thought of one anyway), and we're not purely logical creatures anyway...

 
pastthefuture
Dec 21, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

If a thought correctly describes objective reality, then it describes what produces the thought. This does not violate the independence of reality from anything mystical. It is a combined explanation of reality and of self. Thus, it is not self-contradictory.

If a thought describes the nonexistent, then it describes the unreal. The unreal cannot produce the thought because it is nothing and thoughts are produced by something. This violates the independence of reality from anything mystical.

By unreality, of course, is meant not part of reality. To exist, something must be a part of reality. Are "souls" part of reality? "Souls" are beyond invisible. They have no observable effect on reality, unlike the four fundamental forces, i.e. electromagnetism, strong interaction, weak interaction and gravitation. The concept of a conscious soul as a thing-in-itself is inconsistent with reality.

Reality can exist by itself without the need for myth.

 
pastthefuture
Dec 22, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

You don't seem to accept the possibility that this "I" is an illusion. That's what always bugged me about Descartes and philosophy 101, starting with "I" from a subjective standpoint and treating it as if that experience is proof positive that subjective being is its own thing, proves a soul, and is suspended above reality. For if it's just matter and forces then how could "I" be?

Claiming "I" as transcendental is presumptive and discards the other possibility out of hand. It is also the basis for the predominant branch of philosophic mucky-muck.

With your last paragraph I respond by restating something I wrote in response to someone else:

"Actually, nature can explain itself without the need for a creator. This is not an issue of subtracting out the "unexplained" and leaving God as a common denominator... Temporal logic is not best suited to answer the deeper questions of nature. Time is simply a dimension intertwined with other dimensions (space). It is one part of a fabric. Dismantled, the time component becomes no different than any other spatial dimension. It extends in two directions. Therefore, the nature of reality requires no boundary."

So this isn't something from nothing, which is a concept I vehemently detest. It is an iteration of structure manifesting. Our unique experience is a reflection from our standpoint. Yet it is all the same. All forms of the fundamental(s) exist in all manifestations.

You think a thought is different, something other than the underlying processes making it what it is. I do not see us as any different than anything else, just a less likely manifestation. We are no greater than the sum of our parts. We are our parts.

Does a supercomputer have transcendent knowledge with only an immanent basis of operation? We are designing machines reaching the level of biological cats that learn from experience and interaction with the world. Advanced AI will employ reason (strategy, solving puzzles, making judgments under uncertainty), represent knowledge, plan, learn and communicate in natural language. Aspects of the human mind that will also manifest artificially are consciousness (subjective experience and thought), self-awareness (being aware of oneself as a separate individual, especially metacognitive thinking), sentience (the ability to "feel" perceptions or emotions subjectively) and sapience (the capacity for wisdom). The same scientific building blocks underly this transformation of our environment. Each property can be reduced to its components and so forth. Each lower level explains the higher level. If not, what are we creating and how come?

 
pastthefuture
Dec 23, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

For practical purposes choices matter, even if all our past experiences factor in to lead to the one inevitable choice.

Determinism, with quantum uncertainty taken into account, is not a recipe for hopelessness or giving up on acting freely (or "acting freely" if you will). That reaction, although perfectly explainable deterministically, will just likely lead to making poor choices or doing nothing (another choice) "because it doesn't matter anyways." (Sigh) sic transit gloria mundi. But determinism is not defeatism, nor necessarily depressing. It can be uplifting, being mesmerized by the sine qua non of the present moment.

Just because the complicatedness of higher forms and what goes into them is difficult to grasp does not mean it cannot be explained. It can and science is filling in all the gaps between disciplinary fields: psychology to biology to chemistry to physics.

"[I]f Materialism is true, then you did not choose anything and there is no 'you'. It is all causally determined by matter and forces." - Yes, strictly speaking. This is liberating in that I feel one with everything else. Quite a world view really. The future is consideration of the past and those events leading up to now. The mental processes themselves are deliberations, guided by the information inscribed in our brains and our proneness to react to stimuli in certain ways based on all our collective past experiences.

The modus operandi of being does not diminish it. The effect is the same in toto. Just a present state of mind. The expression of "intentionality, thoughts, self awareness,...rationality" does not render them "unreal," but the result of something different than most might consider in their day to day lives. How lucky we are. Carpe diem!

In this debate I don't mean to be overly terse or tenacious. We may seem worlds apart but can track our different understanding of what 'being' can be to their roots. We have that (maybe tiresome) eternal chicken or the egg riddle of infinite regress (or at least supposedly) it seems. So which comes first, matter or the mind? "Since matter was produced, mind must have produced it." One can also say that since mind was produced, matter must have produced it. Again, this is back to one of the original formulations on which has the essential primacy. Add in a splash of the standard model of the universe and it makes for great debate.

I think I have addressed your concerns (as you put it) that while "there is no 'I' that can analyze, think, judge, and understand" they are nevertheless unfolding in real time in a universe that explains why and how it can all be experientially the same. We'll have to agree to disagree on this 'I' and the "distinctions" and "consequences" you raise. 'I' see no contradiction. I am the universe. The universe is me. The disagreement is semantic. I will not recognize a difference and be made into a 'philosophical zombie.' (Yes, you can look that one up.)

 
scienceforthewin
Dec 23, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

"But, an eternal universe cannot be supported by modern science or even philosophy."

An eternal universe is supported by modern science. If you followed science even remotely I would imagine that you would have heard that the rate of expansion of the universe is increasing, and will continue to as it has done for the last 13.7 billion years (if you do not understand this, read up on the 'inflation' theory of the big bang).

As for, "in the end the atheist must affirm that life is utterly meaningless," I've never heard a reasonable 'point' to life from anyone, religious or otherwise, so if you could please enlighten me as to the reason for life given by Christianity, it would be much obliged.

 
jasper2428
Dec 27, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
You call atheists hypocrites. At least we don't have banners saying we are good or altruistic. But churches do. You claim to be something and don't live up to it(self sacrifice, look at the net worth of ALL churches in the world, and tell me they could make more money selling them and directing donations to other societies) , then you're the liar.
Source: A comment in www.9gag.com

 
sambt5
Dec 28, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
now my argument may not be as long as any of the others but it gets to the point for who i'm arguing for faster:
i am an atheist as you can see who i am arguing for and here are a few of the reasons im an aethist using some quotes from the bible and some stuff iv picked up and put together myself :

1:In the book of Genisis: God creates light and separates light from darkness, and day from night, on the first day. Yet he didn't make the light producing objects (the sun and the stars) until the fourth day

2: a little soothing i read a while back (maybe not exact as i read it ): Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

3: something i thought up myself while in r.e and history in school : in the 10 commandments their is no mention of slavery at all ? so by this logic, every catholic should believe in slavery because not even Jesus said against it? and to not believe in slavery should be to go against the bible ? which also means they shall be codemened to hell. also the times of slavery were probably the worst times in history and is still happening today, maybe if it was spoken out agienst, then it would have died down sooner ?

4: according to the bible the earth is still flat ? a loving all knowing god/son of god should have told us the earth was round to stop people form being scared of falling off the side. and allow us to get new medicains and spread out our economy even more

5: we would be more technologically evanced if it went for any region, due to the fact theists(people who belive in a divine being) tortured, killed, scorned and punished anyone who tryed to change our way of thinking or of doing stuff/ disproved something that's in their holy book.

6: the smartest men on this planet have been atheists

7: god did not give us free will even if it says he did: due to the fact that he threatening to punish us if we go against him, you may think its free will that we can still choose to ignore him but think of it like this : Your in prison and a gang of people comes to you, who tell you to do stuff and work for them, but if you disobey you will be tortured for ever, that is not free will in the eyes of humanity it is blackmail and suppressing freewill even if you can do the opposite

8:Time began with the universe ? yes most people will agree, how can god have created something over a period of time , if time has not began ? if their is no time to create something, then how can it have been created (Creationist story or not)

9: if we lived in a relgion only world we would no longer strive to achieve scientific answers we will go with what we are given, which is not alot and our medicians, descouverys and advances would all perish.

10: the bible is constantly changed and edited to adapt with what we want, it says in the bible that it shall not be changed or interpreted in another way. so the bible is in hundreds of different languages, and words are being changed and passages left out, technically every one who hasten read the bible in Hebrew should go to hell ?

11: last point : The bible constantly contradicts its self even with events supposedly seen by multiple people for example:
When was Jesus crucified?
The day before Passover at about noon (John 19:14)
On the day of Passover at 09:00 (Mark 15:25)

Sorry for bad grammar and spelling, i am not that good at English or any other languages

 
scienceforthewin
Dec 28, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

Firstly, eternal doesn't mean without beginning. I think what you meant to say was that science doesn't support a universe of infinite age. Eternal simply means that it has no end, and will eventually reach an infinite age. Please try to use the correct words and then we will avoid misunderstandings. Also, why do atheists have to believe in an eternal universe? Assuming that by atheists we mean those who fully believe in science, then they don't have to have an answer to everything. That's the great thing about science, rather than creating stuff to make everything work, it just says, 'we don't know.'

Secondly, I don't see this 'ad hominin' attack that you speak of. Please would you inform me of the part of my argument that verifies your statement.

Thirdly, in what way do, "atheists still live their lives as though there is ultimate meaning?" If your argument is that they don't always act for themselves, and sometimes help others at their own expense, that is a result of the human brain's ability to empathise.

Finally, my questioning of Christianity's 'meaning' of life was mainly out of interest as to what their reason is. It would seem, from your apparent inability to tell me, that Christianity as a whole also has no reason for life. Please feel free to correct me.

 
scienceforthewin
Dec 29, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

In response to your first point, I accept this. Personally I still feel that eternal means without end but I will accept your meaning and the meaning given by numerous dictionary websites.

Secondly, something can, in theory, reach an infinite age. Admittedly, practically it couldn't, but in theory it would if it has no end.

Thirdly, I don't see why an atheist can't say "I don't know." As I said in my previous statement that I assume that by atheist we mean someone who believes in science, not religion, and you said nothing about it, that this is the case (that we mean someone who entirely believes in science). Scientists say that they don't know about most things, and in so doing are not being inconsistent with their world view. Being an atheist for me is not about making sure I don't believe in a god, but about believing only in that which has rock solid evidence supporting it, and expanding my world view by testing theories put forward, and so giving evidence to these theories. Therefore, I have no restrictions on my world view in the long term, other than things that provide very little (and inconclusive) or no evidence.

To your second point, I apologise for this statement. It was not intended as an attack on you. Once more, I am sorry.

As for your third point, I don't see how "atheists live as though the reality of their lives has some form of meaning." If you would please disclose this information, and I will then continue the debate on this point. Also, again this idea that atheists have any limit to their world view is key to your argument, and I personally feel we have no limiting factors to our world view.

For your final point, I was merely interested in whether you actually did have a reason for life (I do have a problem with your given point but, I agree with you that this debate should not be shifted to a different point) and I thank you for providing one.

 
urwutuis
Dec 29, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal



Saying that there is no standard for morality doesn't make it fact.
Doing the right thing (morality) does not require the influence of magical beings. It is a process of natural selection. Moral behavior within a group strengthens the group as a whole and bonds individuals through trust which in turn benefits the individual by lower stress among other things increasing the chances of survival.
Doing the right thing simply makes sense.
Basic morality is common sense not mystical.

If morality needs to be dictated by an outside influence and enforced by the threat of eternal damnation we are nothing more than animals in a cage.
What is the law. Don't spill blood.

I have a few simple question.
Why do you believe the Bible is the word of God?
Why doesn't the fossil record support creation?
Why are the 10 commandments almost an exact copy of spell 125 in The Book of the Dead?
Why did God wait until just 3,000 years ago to give us the rules?
Doesn't the ease with which you see all other religions as misguided lead you to suspect your own may be the same?
Why would a perfect being create such an imperfection as man and then punish that creation for his own mistakes?
How come fat chance and slim chance mean the same thing?



 
cochran724
Jan 01, 2012
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Christianity along with nearly all other religion is just a man made idea to fill the void for the question. "How did we get here?" The only reason people continue to believe in religion as science disproves is because its been preached and shoved down the throats of children since they were born. Granted there are some cases were a non religious man might turn to religion because of a devestating event but beside the point. Children are also told that santa clause is real from day one. The believe in santa without question because that is the only thing they know. Even when the logic proves otherwise children in America believe in santa clause on average until they are 11. Christianity is a process of manipulation, there are many logically sound Christians but are blinded by the fact that they have been preached the same crap theyre whole life.

 
alexcarrier
Jan 11, 2012
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

Individualeleven

Creation is a made-up event, if the bible wants to
date an imaginary event, I'm sure it will be accurate
in doing so.
So can the bible can date Chinese history then?
What about the ways of life of dead civilizations?
What about people other than those in the bible?
What about all the ancient philosophers we know about?
Did the bible help us with those people?
And what of recent events?
Your statement is just plain wrong.
The bible did little to nothing when it came to
uncovering our past.
When you compare it to archaeology, modern dating methods,
and cosmology, it is an insult to compare the knowledge,
if any, of the bible to everything we've discovered
the bible didn't tell us about.

Please read about radiometric and radiocarbon dating.
If you going to argue about something,
at least have a look into it.

"Radiometric dating was found to be wrong by carbon dating."???

Are you serious or was that a mistake?
Radiocarbon dating is one of many techniques of
Radiometric dating. A few Radiometric techniques
are radiocarbon, potassium-argon, and uranium-lead dating.

Saying that:
"Radiometric dating was found to be wrong by carbon dating."
is like saying that vegetables were found to be
less healthy than carrots.

Moreover, Radiocabon dating is used on
once-living specimens, whereas other methods
(Lead-lead dating for example) are more common
for specimens like rocks.
That's where the millions of years come into play.
If you're wondering "how are dinosaurs millions
of years old then? How do we know when radiocarbon
dating only works for dates between 58,000 and 62,000 years?"

Because fossils are tested rather than bones.
Absolute dating (as opposed to relative dating)
is used and for that (potassium-argon or
rubidium-strontium may be used).
Go read a bit first on it, then you'll understand.

That was a great link and all but the author assumes
radiocarbon dating is used, and when lead-lead
dating was mentioned, absolute dating was ignored.

***

Stating the third law of thermodynamics doesn't prove matter
is finite. If the universe has infinite space, there could be infinite energy in it.

***

Job 26:10
"He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness."
Explain.

Prov 8:27
"I was there when he set the heavens in place, when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep."
Explain.

Isaiah 40:22
"He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in."
Explain.

Amos 9:6
"he who builds his lofty palace in the heavens and sets its foundation on the earth, who calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out over the face of the land--the LORD is his name."
Explain.

Where, O where, does any of this say "The earth is round,
not flat." ?

None of this can say the earth is round without
taking great pains to twist and construe its
meaning, into something it did not mean.
"Thou shall not kill." Is much, much, much clearer.


***
The hydrologic Cycle.

"The bible is actually a scientific book?"
You can't take post-bible scientifically-explained natural phenomena
and then claim the bible explained them first because it briefly,
and cryptically, mentions those phenomena.

"He wraps up the waters in his clouds, yet the clouds do not burst under their weight"

What is this? What does that even mean?


WIKIPEDIA - "Water can change states among liquid, vapor, and solid at
various places in the water cycle. Although the balance
of water on Earth remains fairly constant over time,
individual water molecules can come and go, in and out
of the atmosphere. The water moves from one reservoir to
another, such as from river to ocean, or from the ocean
to the atmosphere, by the physical processes of
evaporation, condensation, precipitation, infiltration,
runoff, and subsurface flow. In so doing, the water goes
through different phases: liquid, solid, and gas."

THAT, is an explanation. Not some cryptic Nostro Damus
business. Real information.
Enough of this "The bible is scientific".

***

Archaeology may confirm that the bible actually stopped
talking about God sometimes, long enough to talk about
some historic events, but that doesn't mean the rest of
what it says is true.

The idea was present before the document? Of course it was,
how do you want it to be? The document materialized then
people got the idea? Wrong on at least two levels.

***

So, so far you don't seem to have reason or logic.
You've loosely misused some sciencetific knowledge and
after having used science as you main proponent in your
arguments, you're STILL saying the bible has more credibility?

***

What happens if you don't choose God?
I refuse to believe in God, please tell me what
you've been taught will happen to me.

***

You're really going to rely on the dictionary for the
definition of murder? You think God would have covered that.
So if another man, equal in the eyes of God, gives you permission
to kill someone, you're allowed?
I don't think Jesus would approve.
Thou shall not kill.

***

"Atheism can't hold claim to a meaningful life."
Overly complex way of saying Atheist can't have meaning in their lives.
Not the first time religion tries to de-humanize non-followers.
If meaning for you means God has planned out what meaning is,
then my life has no meaning.
The universe has no meaning, but our lives our defined by our choices.

***
Christians who disagree on everything,
use science when its convenient,
misuse it,
interpret the bible as they please,
give it meaning where it has none,
hate their neighbors because of their beliefs,
and can't explain why their religion is more correct than the next guy's.
Modern christianity is clearly more inconsistent than Atheism.

 
alexcarrier
Jan 11, 2012
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show





Creation is a made-up event, if it wants to
date an imaginary event, I'm sure it will be
accurate in doing so.
So the bible can date Chinese history then?
What about the ways of life of dead civilizations?
What about people? Other than people in the bible?
What about all the ancient philosophers we know about?
Did the bible help us with those people?
And what recent events?
Your statement is just plain wrong.
The bible did little to nothing when it came to
uncovering our past.
When you compare it to archaeology, modern dating methods,
and cosmology, it is an insult to compare the knowledge,
if any, of the bible to everything we've discovered the
bible didn't tell us about.

If you going to argue about something,
at least have a look into it first.

"Radiometric dating was found to be wrong by carbon dating."

You didn't even look up either one of these for yourself, did you?
Radiocarbon dating is one of many techniques of
Radiometric dating. A few Radiometric techniques
are radiocarbon, potassium-argon, and uranium-lead dating.

Saying that:
"Radiometric dating was found to be wrong by carbon dating."
is like saying that vegetables were found to be
less healthy than carrots.

Moreover, Radiocabon dating is used on
once-living specimens, whereas other methods
(Lead-lead dating for example) are more common
for specimens like rocks.
That's where the millions of years come into play.
If you're wondering "how are dinosaurs millions
of years old then? How do we know when radiocarbon
dating only works for dates between 58,000 and 62,000 years?"

Because fossils are tested rather than bones.
Absolute dating (as opposed to relative dating)
is used and for that (potassium-argon or
rubidium-strontium may be used).

That was a great link and all but the author assumes
radiocarbon dating is used, and when lead-lead
dating was mentioned, absolute dating was ignored.

***

Stating the third law of thermodynamics doesn't prove matter
is finite. It states that entropy will reach a minimum.

What I was asking was how you could prove there was infinite energy
in the universe, or also, how you could prove the universe was finite.
How do you know there isn't more to the universe
that we don't know about?

***

Job 26:10
"He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness."
Explain.

Prov 8:27
"I was there when he set the heavens in place, when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep."
Explain.

Isaiah 40:22
"He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in."
Explain.

Amos 9:6
"he who builds his lofty palace in the heavens and sets its foundation on the earth, who calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out over the face of the land--the LORD is his name."
Explain.

Where does any of this say
"The earth is round, not flat." ?

None of this can say the earth is round without
taking great pains to twist and construe its
meaning, into something it did not mean.
"Thou shall not kill." Is much clearer.
Aren't you taking these passages out of context,
something I was accused of doing with a far clearer message?
Consider this before you rebutt my arguement, either one of them.

"The bible is actually a scientific book?"
You can't take post-bible scientifically-explained natural phenomena
and then claim the bible explained them first because it cryptically
mentions those phenomena.

"He wraps up the waters in his clouds, yet the clouds do not burst under their weight"

What is this? This is not any revelation as to the hydrologic cycle.
Here's how it's done. If the writer's are at fault, they would be proud of what follows.
If God is at fault, he gave us way too much credit because this passage
doesn't help at all.
Humans discovered and defined the hydrologic circle themselves.
The bible didn't discover it first, nor its writers, nor did God tell us of it.

WIKIPEDIA "Water can change states among liquid, vapor, and solid at
various places in the water cycle. Although the balance
of water on Earth remains fairly constant over time,
individual water molecules can come and go, in and out
of the atmosphere. The water moves from one reservoir to
another, such as from river to ocean, or from the ocean
to the atmosphere, by the physical processes of
evaporation, condensation, precipitation, infiltration,
runoff, and subsurface flow. In so doing, the water goes
through different phases: liquid, solid, and gas."

THAT, is an explanation. Real information.

***

Archaeology may confirm that the bible actually stopped
talking about God sometimes, long enough to talk about
some historic events, but that doesn't mean the rest of
what it says is true.

The idea was present before the document? Of course it was,
how do you want it to be? The document materialized then
people got the idea? Wrong on at least two levels.

***

So, so far you don't seem to have reason or logic.
You've loosely misused some sciencetific knowledge and
after having used science as you main proponent in your
arguments, you're still saying the bible has more
credibility.

***

I'd like to know what happens to me if I refuse to choose God.
After having been made aware of the idea and whatever else is needed
so that I can't be excused from judgement.

***

You're really going to rely on the dictionary for the
definition of murder? You think God would have covered that.
What gives man, who are all equal in the eyes of God,
the right to give another man the right to kill?
Because an authority figure said it was okay you can do it now?
Inconsistency incarnate

***

"Atheism can't hold claim to a meaningful life."
Overly complex way of saying Atheist can't have meaning.
I don't know what you consider meaning, but the meaning
of mine is a little closer to home than yours, I think.
If the meaning of the universe, sure, it has none.
If the meaning of our lives, they vary greatly and
depend greatly on what happens in our lives.
We feel we've done something meaningful when we overcome adversity,
conquered our weaknesses and achieved out goals.
We feels meaning when some with whom we have history dies,
or those we know make new life.

This is life meaning.

***

Christianity forbids killing, then allows it.
It claims science is the most credible source, then claims it is above science.
Contends its rightful place as the "right" religion, but gives no reason it should be moreso than other religions.
Arrogantly claims to have given man free will, then bars humans from making moral decisions without God.
It flip-flops when pressured.
The bible is open to interpretation.
And worst of all, there is no applying logic to nail or even embrace its jello-like tenants,
and then many claim to use logic to arrive to their faith-based conclusions.

Modern christianity is clearly more inconsistent than Atheism.


*************


 
+ Add Argument

16
Christian


carlodog
Dec 13, 2011
4 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: theudas Show

Hello again Theudas, its been quite a while. Hope that you have been doing well.

In reference to you your first objection please refer to my rebuttal to alexcarrier. My response to him is the same to you.

In response to your second point. Actions being harmful or beneficial presuppose the good and the evil. This does not get the atheist around this problem.

Response to third point. Murder, spitefully ending the life of a human being has always been wrong. If not then you cannot condemn Hitler for the Holocaust. If this be true then there is an absolute standard, and morals are not relative. If morals are relative, then there is no binding reason why I should not go and do what ever I please, even if it 'hurts' other people. Because it is good for me.

Forth point. The atheist must affirm that there is no ultimate point to reality. This is nihilism. This is how Alen Pratt defines 'existential nihilism': the notion that life has no intrinsic meaning or value, and it is, no doubt, the most commonly used and understood sense of the word today. SOURCE: http://www.iep.utm.edu/nihilism/. That is how I make the connection.

Fifth point. Where is the dignity and integrity, in acting like there is meaning to life, but saying there is none. Where is the dignity and integrity, in saying things are truly evil, but not having any objective reason for saying so. Where is the dignity and integrity in dogmatically claiming there is NO God and not being able to support the claim? If this offends any atheist I do apologize; but why should it offend you? For what is dignity and integrity if morals are relative?






 
individualeleven
Dec 13, 2011
3 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

"Atheists can believe the universe is eternal or it
isn't. They are not bound by any credos stating otherwise.
Most Atheists believe Big Bang is correct, true. But Big Bang,
explains the development of the universe as we know it.
It never claimed to explain much of anything prior.
Which renders the rest of your first argument moot."

The "credos" that athiest are bound to for logic and science is the very reason for their denial of a god and their reason for being an atheist, that is there statement that they claim to adhere to. Atheists don't believe in a god because there is no scientific evidence or proof that he exists and the logic to believe such is credited to being ridiculous and even poisonous to the minds of children. - This is the most common argument I get from atheists.
So the argument is then put forth using the atheists "treasured" logic and science and that is where they tend to turn to the "supposed" faults of christianity instead of trying to explain the error in their belief. If you don't believe me, look up the debate "atheism is ultimately pointless in the end", where I ask how their belief that in nothing happens after death except ceasing to exist is in fact proof that any meaning in today's life is for nothing. I got not a single answer for this but got endless attacks on the christian belief instead.
So for the logic of an finite universe based on the science we have today, we know that the universe had a beginning, as well as we know that an infinite number of cause and effect events in the past can't possibly happen, because today and tomorrow will never come. You can't infinitely expand the universe in the past and still have room for it to expand today or tomorrow. Also an infinite universe cannot support itself forever. Therefore the logic is that there was a first cause that had no cause of its own. The big bang and the black hole/worm-hole theory can't explain this, and so the belief factor for atheists is therefore very flawed.
Since you can't affirm how the beginning came to be and you can't affirm where we go after death, your belief then for the now is pointless. When the universe dies and there is nothing or no one left to acknowledge our meaning and purpose then everything that we did was pointless.
Where Christians and even other faiths that I don't believe to be correct at least believe in something afterward that then gives meaning for the now as well as we have a reason for the first cause. Which is something that is eternal that exists outside of our own natural laws. Which is best described as being supernatural, which is exactly how we describe God.
Then there is the issue of science. The bible has been proven to be more historically accurate than any current dating method provided to us by science and technology. The bible has far more evidence to support it as truth then any known theory that the scientific community has brought forth. The bible has over 2000 recorded prophecies most in minute detail that gives its credibility as the word of God. The bible has some of the first recorded records for scientific evidence such as a round earth. All these coupled with the finite universe logic is a far greater reason to believe in a God then to not believe in one.

"Moreover, Christianity is fixated on telling people they
will go to heaven or hell for their actions. I say that no
person coerced by rewards and punishments can possibly make
a truly moral choice. Because Atheists reason unhindered by
what they stand to gain, their choices truly reflect goodwill
and not a fear of a higher power."

That is stated in some religions such as jehova witness but it is not biblical.
The act of choosing God is not one of moralilty nor does getting into heaven an act of good deeds.
Since choosing God is coming to Him by faith through Jesus by acknowledging Him as lord and savior it is then a free gift into heaven. It is this faith that allows humans to enter into the relationship process that leads to loving the creator rather than choosing Him out of fear. You can't truly fear Him if you can't prove He exists.
That is why He doesn't part the skies and hold a lightning bolt over our heads or cure all diseases and solve world hunger.
Therefore if I buy coffee for someone behind me in a drive through window, I can still gain nothing more than self gratification for doing something nice, just the same as you. The reason then for me wanting to do good and not evil is for two reasons. First reason is the same as you, the golden rule, I like people treating me nicely, therefore I will do the same. The second reason is because I love my creator and wish to move closer to a state of perfection. This is not an act of coercian or reward, but rather a "golden rule" on a larger scale, to be like my creator whom has given so much to me.

Your reference from Martin Luther King does not reflect the bible or the actual faith of Christianity, it only reflects that there have been bad people and groups of people in the past that have mis-used the faith for their greed or power.

"Talk about an inconsistency in the Christian faith" - Besides answering the first part about the mis-used MLK quote, I'll address the consistency of the bible.

Christiananswers.net:
"Consider the fact that the Bible is comprised of 66 Books written over a period of about 1,500 years by over 40 authors from all walks of life, with different kinds of personalities, and in all sorts of situations. It was written in three languages on three continents, and it covers hundreds of controversial subjects. Yet, it fits together into one cohesive story with an appropriate beginning, a logical ending, a central character, and a consistent theme."
Christiananswers.net:
"The individual writers, at the time of writing, had no idea that their message was eventually to be incorporated into such a Book, but each nevertheless fits perfectly into place and serves its own unique purpose as a component of the whole. Anyone who diligently studies the Bible will continually find remarkable structural and mathematical patterns woven throughout its fabric, with an intricacy and symmetry incapable of explanation by chance or collusion.

The one consistent theme of the Bible, developing in grandeur from Genesis to Revelation, is God's great work in the creation and redemption of all things, through His only Son, the Lord Jesus Christ."

When you consider the bible within its context and not try and pick out verses here and there, you will find that they are never in contradiction to each other and you'll find a complete harmony across all 66 books for one theme. This includes your "thou shall not kill, no means no" argument.

You asked for the bible references for Abortion, slavery, and gay marriage:
Abortion: http://www.priestsforlife.org/brochures/thebible.html, provides many verses and explains it pretty well.
Slavery: http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/slavery_bible.html
Gay marriage: http://www.tbm.org/samesexmarriages.htm
There are many more also easily findable on the net, but some are misguided, these here are in line with the current Christian teachings.
As for Cloning... http://static.justchristians.com/bibleStudy/articles/cloning.html, there is no issue with duplicating the body, we can't duplicate the soul, but that is not our job, but one that God will take care of, should technology reach that point.


The thing that gets me is that you admitted to not reading the bible, which logically means you should only be able to argue the atheists side of views, but by bringing up anything out of the bible, especially out of context is only then an argument out of ignorance. You had many valid points for morality and the golden rule is good enough to base what is then evil or not, but ultimately without providing an answer for the logical and scientific evidence brought against you, you then should not deny the atheism's flaws and inconsistencies. The only way you should bring up things out of the bible would then be by questions asking what it means.

It's the same reason I don't bring up an argument against the war in Iraq, because without the knowledge that the President and the advisors have, any argument I would bring then would be ignorant or just out of personal opinions based out of feelings, that don't make for a good argument.


 
carlodog
Dec 13, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: theudas Show

I have been doing good as well. Thank you.

First, I believe that murder by its most common and widely held definition does not include that of killing animals.
"the unlawful and malicious or premeditated killing of one human being by another; also, any killing done while committing some other felony, as rape or robbery". The Websters New World Dictionary. There is a fundamental difference between murder and killing. To kill is to "to cause the death of; make die" according to the same dictionary. The fundamental difference is the malicious, premeditation, killing of one human being to another. Yet, you for equate the two. I do not see how you are justified in equating them.

Based on all my research on jurisprudence I have never found a law in any culture at any time that said that it was legal for one human being to malicious or premeditated killing another. There has always been consequences for those who commit murder. It has always been unlawful. Killing in self defense is not considered murder. It lacks both malicious motives and is not premeditated. Humanity has always valued human life, or there would have never been any jurisprudence established in any culture. The very foundation of human law is to protect those inherent rights of humanity.

Your personal values on animal life and plant life, may not be shared by all. This however does not prove that there are not certain inherent value in human life. If morals are relative, then humans have never had the right to life, liberty, or happiness. Are you saying that in 500 B.C. humans did not have these rights, or in 1892 A.D.humans did not have these rights, or in 1933 humans did not have these rights? Are you saying that Hitler was justified in murdering the Jewish people?

It is wrong to bear false witness against your neighbor. It is absolutely wrong to bear false witness against my neighbor.

Consequences are not binding reasons. They are deterrents, but they cannot tell me if an action is right or not. There are consequences for doing what is right, often times one suffers more for doing what is right. Consequences are only deterrents. Absolute morals are binding. If it is absolutely wrong to murder, then it does not matter what the circumstances are or what the consequences may or may not be, or what benefit there is to gain; it will still be wrong.

Second. A subjective purpose is no purpose at all. Sure people may ascribe meaning to their lives, but in the end that subjective purpose amounts to nothing. When the person dies so does the purpose. This is not purpose, this is merely humanity trying to derive purpose and meaning from a universe that is purposeless and meaningless. In the grand picture that transcends the subjective apprehension of individuals, there is no meaning to life. This is what the atheist must believe, they have nothing that transcends the individual to give purpose and meaning to life, or the universe. It is all meaningless, this is the only consistent conclusion the atheist has concerning meaning and purpose of reality.

I provide definitions so that you can know what it is that I mean by using the word.

Any person who claims there is no God, must provide support for that claim. It is a universal claim about reality. It means that there is no God period. Not in general, the claim does not discriminate between deities. It is inclusive of all supposed deities. This requires proof, support, evidence. Just like a person who claims there is a God. Both people are making truth claims about reality, and need to provide support. Any person who dogmatically makes truth claims, but does not support them does not have dignity or integrity concerning their belief system.

Dignity and integrity does not describe a persons ethics, conduct, etc. It describes how a person acts compared to ethics, conduct, etc. But if morals are relative, then so is ethics, conduct, etc. If this is true then for me to say to any moral relativist that they lack dignity and integrity should not bother them in the least bit, because those are only descriptions of my opinion, based on my idea of ethics, conduct, etc. Being that my opinion is subjective and does not relate to any binding absolute standard then my opinions mean very little. So the atheist should not be offended.

A moral relativist is one who believes that morals are subjective, defined by the person who holds them. One may believe A is moral because in their own opinion and definition it is, whole another may believe A is immoral because in their own opinion and definition it is. There is no transcendent binding absolute standard, that determines whether A is moral or not, its only in the eyes of the beholder.

 
individualeleven
Dec 15, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: againstthecurrents Show

I agree and wasn't making faith a science. There is no difinitive proof for God's existence, only supporting evidence to give enough guidence for some to faith, for others, they don't need the extra to believe. Faith is needed to bring humans back into a relationship with God, as was our purpose. Faith is needed to give us the opportunity to learn to love an almighty creator as opposed to choosing Him out of fear. Faith is not a science. Yet we can still use science and logic to a point to give a greater reason to believe in a god over not believing in a god. God created everything, even science. Yet I am not trying to use logic and science to explain God, He is in fact above our understanding infinitely.

Yes the body is our fleshly nature, our soul is our mind, will, and emotions, and our spirit, is or true self, created in His image and likeness. Most christians and non christians confuse this point, thinking the soul is the same as the spirit, yet the bible does actually separate the two.
We were created in the same image and likeness of God, as a spirit and of love, yet we are not the same as God, only like Him. To sin is death, our spiritual nature died, and we are born into this death. Yet the gift of God which is the free gift of salvation through Jesus, is to be born again in our spiritual selves. Until that point, our mortal minds and body have no hope of understanding even a little, the mysteries of God. That is why Jesus mostly taught in parables and that is why we come to God in faith. Once born again, our spirits can begin a real relationship with the Father and thus start to learn His real nature, which we expierence as something more that is too difficult to truly put into words. And this process will continue for all eternity as we learn and worship God, here and in heaven.

 
carlodog
Dec 16, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

In reference to the first premise. I agree that objective reality exists out side the mind, but for your conclusion to follow it seems as though there is a hidden premise. That being, that objective reality exists 'exclusively' independent of the human mind. The only way for your conclusion to follow would be that objective reality 'only' exists independently of the human mind. If this was true than any and every subjective concept could not exist outside the mind. As your premise stands it is still possible for concepts to exist outside the mind. As long as God's existence is even possible, the atheistic claim is unfounded.

In reference to your second premise. This is the presumption, how do you know that God is 'merely' a subjective concept? A person would have to have omniscience to even make this claim. For it is entirely possible that even if humanity had created this concept of God that He would still exist independently of that human conception. For one to know that God does not exist outside the mind is to claim to have proven a universal negative which cannot be proven.

For these reasons your conclusion does not follow.

Being that you believe that the mind is not secondary to matter. Do you believe that the mind can exist independently of the brain?



 
carlodog
Dec 23, 2011
2 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

If the 'i' is only an illusion then there is no reason to even
have a debate. For this reason I will not respond to another
argument at this time. The debate hinges on this one concept. For
if the 'I' does not exist and we have no self-identity then all
rationality is impossible.

You said, "For if it's (I, self) just matter and forces then how
could "I" be?" I answer, there could be no 'I' at all, it would
be an illusion. But so would everything else. By everything I
mean, all mental processes. Such as, intentionality, thoughts,
self awareness, there would be nothing that exhibits rationality.
All would be an illusion. If this were true then all rational
thought goes out the window. Every thought that we think, is not
really a thought, there is no entity actually thinking. It is
only chemical processes and natural laws producing the 'thought',
if we can even call it a 'thought' anymore.

Which automatically implies determinism, as you have already
admitted to. All 'thoughts' are determined by physical processes,
there cannot be a rational agent choosing A or B. The determining
agent cannot be rational. For this reason it is not 'I' that
chooses A or B it is a physical determining agent. I have no say
or choice in either A or B. Its all natural law and forces.

Yet you, carry on in this debate as if I had some kind of freedom
to look at your reasons and evidences and judge whether they are
good or bad, or rational or irrational. However, if your position
is correct then I have no freedom at all to accept it or reject
it. It is all determined by physical processes, and there is no
'I' that can analyze, think,
judge, and understand.

Determinism in any form is self-defeating. H. P. Owen said, "If
my mental processes are totally determined, I am totally
determined either to accept or to reject determinism. But if the
sole reason for my believing or not believing X is that I am
causally determined to believe it I have no ground for holding
that my judgment is true or false." Your Materialism undercuts
the necessary preconditions for rationality itself to be
possible. It makes rationality itself impossible. If you claim to
know that Materialism is true, and embrace it for good reasons,
then these claims are self-refuting. Because you claim to believe them because they make sense to you, and explain the world around you. But you assume in all this that you actually had a choice in your belief in Materialism. But if Materialism is true, then you did not choose anything and there is no 'you'. It is all causally determined by matter and forces.

 
calistio
Dec 13, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

A point that i find perhaps, annoying ,about those that claim to hold to atheism as their belief of choice.Is they are consistent only in being inconsistent . Take a look at the offered arguments closely and you see this consistent self contradiction. ... "I say that no person coerced by rewards and punishments can possibly make a truly moral choice.".... Since every chosen course of action leads to a result ,beneficial or degenerative to both self and all others in the influential sphere of ones life -all moral decisions are based on what can be gained or lost ,what is best for self or what is best for the whole.This perceived coercion does not exist only in the effort of others imposing it on a person but is the very basis on which both moral and All decisions are made. every human does this whether atheist or not , some with a bigger picture in mind . Others from a very shortsighted view point . and again.... "Because Atheists reason unhindered by what they stand to gain, their choices truly reflect goodwill and not a fear of a higher power." to say this is to deny that you exist . But you Do exist! and be honest! -you desire that which is beneficial first to your self then to those you love , then to those you choice to love .Therefore all your reasoning is influenced by what you stand to gain or lose . And again ..."People don't live as though there are absolute standards of morality. "... If this were true every one would be living out their desires of self gratification to the extreme with out fear of consequence .some may argue that , no they fear the law ,but if moral absolutes did not exist then the law makers and law enforcement would be as corrupt as all others and the system would collapse.this has been shown to be true when rulers who are given over to self indulgence take power -chaos and death ensue . When laws change all the time it is shown to be a desire to pursue self indulgence that inspire such changes and the result will be and "is " laws that no longer make common sense . ie- a man sues a house holder for hitting him with a bat while he was breaking into the mans home .- Its law but it makes no sense . Changing law and using it to argue that there is no absolute moral standard is only an affirmation of the inconsistency of atheism.the very fact one is constantly changing the law away from the standard only proves that man does not like the standard and is in rebellion to it . No one,i don't think, is saying that a person can live to that absolute moral standard- if we all could and did it would be a wonderful world indeed. A large difference between christian faith and atheism is that ,in essence, to "be" a christian one is in a state of honesty where they have admitted they cannot live to that standard - The atheist is in denial both of the fact they cannot obtain it and ,by reason of the stance ,that it exists . one is a state of humility the other a state of rebellious denial in pride . A standard of goodness has to be .and cannot be unchanged -or it would not be "a standard". once it was a standard that a man and woman did not live together until married then it was OK to do so (defacto) by law change.(or a change from the standard)then it was ok to do so at 18 yrs old .. then at 16 yrs old .. by more law changes (more changes away from the standard - the results speak loudly.teen pregnancy, suicide ,single parent homes which have now proved to cause an increase in poverty based social structures and lead to increased crime. scare thought that all that came about because we "changed the law or changed away from the standard." Now if one condones such change it is dangerous .the pedophile has been heard to say "there is nothing wrong with it this is our right to our sexual expression".. what is interesting about this is that it is exactly the same arguments the gay community gave - now we face the danger over a long time of having this last bastion of decent morality stolen. not because there is no standard of goodness ,but because there is and the more we move away from it the more evil our society is becoming . the path of atheism is a dishonest one and a false one that opens the door to justify all and any behavior.It basis its morality on the present law and constantly advocates the changing of that same law and on the most part desires inwardly to do away with all who challenge its doing so . the well known atheist in power have only ever brought the world- death.

 
carlodog
Dec 13, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

Thank you for your argument, and your thoughts concerning this topic. Its always a joy to discuss such topics.

I believe that my first point may have not been as clear as I would have liked. I agree that no atheist must adhere to A or B, as if there is some atheistic creed. My point was that if one rejects the eternal universe, then they cannot by the very restrictions of their belief supply any answer as to why such a universe should be. One of the most fundamental questions that a person can apply their mind too, is that of: what is the purpose for reality? Without a cause for the universe, the answer to the purpose of reality is moot. If a belief system cannot answer this fundamental question then why not seek one that does? Unless there is not purpose; if this be the case then why not act as through there is not purpose? If there is no purpose, then the ONLY question worth entertaining is that of suicide.

I also agree with you that an absolute standard of goodness does not ensure that a person will be good. As to your example taken from Exodus, I summit that your exegesis of that passage is incorrect. For that reason everything in that paragraph is also misguided. But that is an entirely different subject. However, I do agree that absolute standard of goodness does not ensure that a person will be good.

But absolute standard is necessarily for evil to exist as well as good. If there is no absolute standard then there is no good nor bad. There is only actions, that do not have a moral character. The golden rule is worthless unless there is this standard. What is good to me may not be good to you. It was good for Hitler to execute the Jews, but it was not good for the Jews. It was good for the thief to rob the woman, but it was not good for the woman. These actions cannot be judged good nor evil, unless there be a standard outside the two parties. If there is no transcendent standard then it is purely subjective and in the eyes of the beholder. Even if the action does hurt me, and by logical inference will probably hurt you, why should I respect you? If I receive benefit from the action, why not benefit? Why should I respect another person if there is no inherent value in the person? There must an absolute standard.

I am beginning to believe that you do not understand the bible nor the tenets of Christianity. No orthodox Christian holding to the teaching of the Bible will ever say that people are welcomed into heave based on their actions. Despite this misunderstanding (which is also besides the point), I do not see how reward or punishment absolves moral decisions. Once again you are appealing to 'good'will. What is good will if there is no standards to gauge goodness by? What is a moral decision if there is no line between good or evil? Going back to my first point, if the atheist cannot supply the answer to ultimate purpose, then why do anything of 'goodwill'? What would be the point, if there is no ultimate purpose?

Abortion is not a proof of moral relativism, actually it is a proof of objective morality (absolute standard). The very foundation to the abortion debate is that of inherent rights. Does a persons inherent right to liberty override a persons inherent right to life? Or is there even life at all in the fetus? If there are not these two fundamental inherent rights, then there is no grounds for the debate. Both sides appeal to inherent value and rights. If there be no absolute standard, then there is no inherent value, or rights.

Jurisprudence is the formulation of laws to protect these inherent rights. Laws may change, but that does not mean the right they where established to protect changed. People have a inherent right to live, to be free, and to be happy as is so clearly pointed out in the Declaration of Independence. Laws are established to protect these rights. People may disagree on the best way to protect such rights, new circumstances may arise requiring the amendment of a law to better protect the right, so laws are changed, or abolished. But their point is to protect these inherent rights. Any person who would study the history of jurisprudence would discover that every culture at every time has protected these basic inherent rights, in one degree of fashion. This is just what one would expect to see if there was a transcendent absolute standard of goodness (morality).

I would like to add one more point. In addition to the points above, atheism does not have any good supporting arguments. A universal negative cannot be proven, no person can prove that there is no God. Why would a person dogmatically adhere to a belief system that cannot be demonstrated, nor proven?





 
individualeleven
Dec 14, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: againstthecurrents Show

Yes but the rejection of atheists is based on their understanding of logic and science, it is not an empty rejection.
Therefore their rejection is also a belief and it is this belief system that is flawed when the reasons for the rejection (logic and science) is put into question and no answer can be given.

 
againstthecurrents
Dec 14, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

I clicked athiest by accident before,

To your points,

Religious people are perfectly able to defend science and spirituality, that is a no go.
A rejection is not a belief. A rejection is an anti-thesis not a synthesis.

 
individualeleven
Dec 14, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: againstthecurrents Show

I understood what you meant and I was expanding upon it. But I would disagree with your last two statements.

"Religious people are perfectly able to defend science and spirituality, that is a no go.
A rejection is not a belief. A rejection is an anti-thesis not a synthesis. "

Religious people can defend scientific observations because the bible does not contradict them. We can only disagree with scientific theory because even those theories are debated amongst the scientific community.
And yes rejection alone is not a belief, but I was saying that because atheists are not merely rejecting as they like to believe but are defining their rejection with supposed evidence and theories that makes it into a belief. For instance when asked what they believe happens after death, the non-belief answer would be "I don't know" without any further comment. However when they answer "we cease to exist" that is then now a belief.

I would agree that not all atheists believe the exact same thing, however to believe in a general acknowledgment of logic and reason as their bases for rejecting god, we can then question their belief in logic and science that they claim doesn't support a god, because in fact there is more logic and science to support a god than there is to not support one.

 
individualeleven
Dec 15, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: againstthecurrents Show

Christians know far more about the afterlife than an athiests knows about ceasing to exist. Because we believe the bible to be true and the fact that it has more scientific evidence to support it's accuracy, we can make those claims. We know that there will be a new heaven and a new earth, we know that being in His presence we'll be worshipping Him and experiencing His love. Granted we can't know the full extent of what experience brings but we have more clues than a simple "I don't know".

But the big difference between atheists and Christians, or at least Christians that bother to study their belief, is that we can validate our belief, not only in logic and science, but in personal experience as well. The atheist can't make that claim, due to the flaw in their belief. They try and give the "burden of proof" speach to us, but then can't provide any valid proof for not believing in a god. They try and take the "default position" of non-belief because there is no solid proof of God's existence, but then no atheists will ever say "I don't believe in god just because I don't believe. I have no reason, no proof, no theory to why I don't believe I just dont." Every atheist I have met and argued with has always had two cents to give about why they don't believe (and that is no longer merely a default position), and has always given me misguided science and logic theories that when the holes are pointed out they can't answer.

If personal opinions was there only rejection for god, then they would have no bases to argue to a Christian for believing in God, as they would have to conclude that it is merely an opinion that we hold. That is why your last sentence is wrong.

 
againstthecurrents
Dec 15, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

As a college teacher once told me "I don't know is an answer, but it is'nt a good one"
Here is the thing, I am a Christian, I was baptized as an adult and attend church. I wasn't raised
that way I found it. I, nor any priest, bishop, minister, or you, can explain what happens after death.
That is based in faith. It is a flaw to try and make faith a science. Faith cannot be measured in units.
Faith is submission to the one fact that is 100% true, and that fact is none of us really know. That's not
a good answer. But as you said there are ideas and historical events that lead Christians to believe that there is more than nothing. They have a theory. If you would like you can argue the historical aspects of it, if you want you can debate the ties to science or events, but ultimately those are secondary to the spiritual sense within that science/logic simply cannot simplify or explain.

As you say the burden of proof speech is nonsense because one literally cannot "believe" in nothing. Due to that the label atheist is forever tied to religion because it needs it to exist. The burden of proof idea is based in experimentation, the notion that you form a hypothesis and must prove it to be correct.
That isn't how religion works, and this is where i end up debating both religious people and atheists at the same time. Spirituality by definition is not logical. The body by definition is flesh and bone. Once that is gone logic no longer applies. No connection to the brain, no eyes to see from, no chemicals to make us feel good or bad. The main difference between religious people and atheists is that atheists simply give up at that point. It is lazy.
Religious people search for more, search for things not tied to all that is no longer alive "logic" but the spirit.



 
individualeleven
Dec 16, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

A supernatural God could either be without substance or with infinite substance, as both don't exist in our universe and the supernatural is an unknown. It would be more likely for an infinite substance God to sustain our universe.
However to your point, #3 would be logical if #1 and #2 are correct, but the problem is with #2, while you can't prove God and therefore taking a default stance of non belief, doesn't necessarily make God subjective.

When you look at the origin, we conclude that there must be a beginning because there cannot be an infinitely expanded universe of cause and effect events in the past. Otherwise there would be no room to expand the universe today or tomorrow. Therefore since the first cause had to exist without a cause of its own, yet still create a universe governed by laws that don't support an infinite universe, that entity would have to exist outside of our reality. That is best described as supernatural. You touched on this but I would disagree with the existence being either natural or supernatural, but rather it was supernatural and the only thing in question then would be if that entity was sentient or not.
So I would conclude that #2 is false, for we can't take a default position when the supernatural is involved, or if we did, more than likely God would be the default position.
So I say it could be objective reality because we can't rule out the possibility of His existence, therefore if God is real, then He'd do one of two things.
1. Be distant of His creations, standing back and merely observing. This wouldn't mean that the real god is a human creation, but only our ideas of god then would be of human creation.
or
2. He'd be involved. The method of involvement can be many things, but by being involved, the idea of God then isn't a human creation.

 
carlodog
Dec 18, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

I am sorry but I do not see how this helps your initial argument. Are you saying that objective realty exists 'exclusivity' independent of the human mind? How can you make the statement 'God is merely a subjective concept' with any kind of certainty? Especially being that you have just stated that you don't' know whether there is objective truth with absolute certainty.

Then I ask if it you are absolutely certain that it is true that, we don't know whether there is objective truth with absolute certainty?

 
carlodog
Dec 19, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

I am sorry but I have not seen where you have proven that objective reality 'only' exists independently of the human mind. Your argument on materialism does not prove this. It seeks to prove something completely different.

This is an essential premises to your argument, because your second premise rests on it. If your first premise is wrong, then it is entirely possible for God to exist objectively even if the concept is held subjectively. But you have not proven this first premise yet. So your argument cannot prove that God does not exist.

Next, is your second premise. You have not supplied any evidence to support this. The only thing you supplied to support it is to say there is no evidence that God exists. But the lack of evidence is not supporting evidence. No able attorney would every present a case to the judge, and say this man is guilty because there is no evidence to prove he is innocent. The best thing a lack of evidence gets you is agnosticism. But this does not help your argument. You need some kind of evidence to prove this premise.

Your conclusion does not stand. Your argument is not sound.

The rest of what you have said I will not respond to. I see it as a Red Herring and do not see how it helps your argument. I am only concerned with the way that you support your two premises. Now if this stuff does support them then please make it evident and clear how it does.


 
carlodog
Dec 20, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

If you insist that objective reality 'only' exists independently of the mind, then nothing your mind conceives of can ever be counted as objective reality, because the thought is subjective. No thought whatsoever can be considered as objective reality. This goes with every philosophy which are only subjective concepts, including Materialism. For it its self is a subjective concept. Its a way of interpreting and explaining the reality that we perceive. But the philosophy that is formulated is only a subjective concept. So your whole argument is defeated by its very own standards.

Your first premise destroys all rational thinking and all the first principles of logic; which are subjective concepts. All theories of science cannot be true. Your first premise is a subjective concept itself and if your first premise is true, then it proves its self false. Which is an absurdity and logical contradiction. Your first premise must be wrong. Making your entire argument not sound.

This alone destroys your argument. I still insist that your second argument needs some kind of supporting evidence. Now if the plaintiff trying to prove the person guilty, says my only form of evidence is that there is no evidence that proves they are innocent. Therefore they must be guilty. If this was the plaintiff would certainly loose the case. Because no evidence is no evidence at all. You do have a burden of proof, because you have made a claim about reality. You are saying that it is true that God is 'merely' a subjective concept. This claim demands proof and support. You do not have any, by your very own standards it is ok for me say that you are merely operating under speculation or opinion.

Your argument does not prove anything. Your first premise refutes its self, and the rest of your argument. For that matter all rational thinking and every concept which are all subjective by their very nature. Your second premise is completely unfounded, because you have no proof for it. Its a truth claim and all truth claims assume a burden of proof. All this is my way of proving your argument false. I do not need to bring any additional evidence to the table, because your argument refutes its self.



 
carlodog
Dec 21, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

It seems as though you have now changed your first premise. When you first presented your argument this was your premise: 1. Objective reality exist independently of the human mind. But I showed that there was a hidden premise in here. That is that objective reality exists 'exclusivity' or 'only' independently of the mind. This would be the hidden premise and this was needed for your conclusion to follow. But you never refuted this hidden premise. And every time I cited this premise I always brought attention to those two words with apostrophes. Being that you never challenged this point I assumed that this was your premise.

Now you have changed back to the original first premise. So you are still left with a problem and that is premise two. Being that objective reality can and does (but not always) exist subjectively. Then it is entirely possible that the concept of God can and does have a real possibility of being an objective reality. As long as there is this real possibly than your argument has not proved atheism.

With this being the case your argument does not prove that God does not exist. Your conclusion is not proven by your premises.

Or you can go ahead and attempt to prove your second premise true. If you can do that then your first premise is not needed. For if you can prove that God is 'merely' a subjective concept not existing outside the mind. Then you would have proven that God does not exist.

As it stands your argument does not prove its conclusion.




 
carlodog
Dec 22, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
A rebuttal to Pastthefuture.

Being that we have said all that we can about your original argument. Let us move onto the subject of Materialism, which is where you have focused this later rebuttal. You have (not explicitly) denied that objective reality exists 'exclusively' independent of the mind. So I think that it is safe to say that you are not a 'strict materialist'. So you have avoided all the self-contradictions contained in that strict position.

But you still maintain that the mind is dependent on matter. Even this position I believe cannot be maintained rationally.

Let us focus on the central claim. 'Mind is dependent on matter'. (This you have affirmed in previous posts.) This claim cannot find any grounding or proof in matter. Which in your second premise about Materialism you stated that 2. Everything must be concrete (physical) to be real. But any claim that does not depend on the concrete cannot by your own standards be real. Any claim that does not depend on the concrete by your own standards is merely subjective, and for that reason not be real. I am saying that this claim alone is subjective because it cannot be supported by anything concrete (real). Therefore by your own third premise this statement must be unreal and nothing.

You ask: How can I say that 'this claim cannot find any grounding or proof in matter.'?

Let me explain: This claim, claims to be true about 'all' mind and matter. But no truth about 'all' matter can be dependent for its truth upon matter. One cannot stand outside all matter to make an affirmation about all matter and yet simultaneously claim he is really standing inside matter, being dependent upon it. If my mind is completely dependent on matter, then it can't make statements from a vantage point beyond matter. And if its statements are not from a standpoint independent of matter, then they are not really statements about 'all' matter. For one must step beyond something to see it 'all'. The whole cannot be seen from within. It claims to have transcendent knowledge with only an immanent basis of operation.


Next. You say, " Physical reality excludes mind as its own thing and can explain and describe our experiences brought to us via our sense organs".

The problem with this is that physical reality does not describe or explain the 'I' or the 'self', the 'ego'. While you attempt to reduce everything to matter, it would appear that in an epidemiological sense at least, just the opposite is true. For whatever analysis I make of matter, there is always an 'I' that stands outside the object of my analysis. Even when I analyze myself, there is an 'I' that transcends the 'me'. I can never capture my transcendental 'I'. I can only catch it, as it were, out of the corner of my eye. Even if I attempt to put my 'I' in the test-tube of analysis it becomes a me at which the elusive I is looking. There is always more than me; there is the 'I' that is not merely me. Contrary to Materialism, then everything is reducible to (ultimately dependent on) the 'I'.

The last point for now. Matter is not eternal. In your fifth premise on Materialism you affirmed that the universe came into existence. The science behind the Big Bang theory strongly supports that matter came into being at a finite point. More than science there is the Kalam Cosmological Argument that also demonstrates that material universe has a cause. All which you have agreed with in your fifth premise. It does not matter what Stephen Hawkings has said about the universe spontaneously crating itself from nothing. It is an impossibility, and contradiction to even suppose such a thing. The cause of matter cannot be matter itself. If this were the case then matter would have to preceded itself to cause itself. It would have to both exist and not exist at the same time and in the same relationship. Which is a contradiction. It is pure absurdity. Either matter produced mind, or mind produced matter. Since matter was produced, mind must have produced it.

 
carlodog
Dec 25, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: scienceforthewin Show

What is with the ad hominin attacks? Was my argument that strong that you had to fall back to ad hominin? The lowest form of argumentation and might I add a logical fallacy.

Again I will say that modern science does not support an eternal universe. By eternal I mean with out beginning. There is no scientific evidence that even remotely demonstrates that the universe is eternal. The very fact that the universe is expanding at an increasing rate actually proves the opposite of an eternal universe. Reverse the expansion and what do you get? A static singularity of infinite density, which signals the finite beginning point of all matter, space, and time.

Being that the standard inflationary model of the Big Bang actually proves my point. I am going to assume that you meant to refer to Andrei Linde's Chaotic Inflationary Model. Which is only a model and does not have any hard evidence to support it. Plus the theory itself has been demonstrated by Arvind Borde and Alexander Vilenkin to have required a first initial singularity. Which brings you right back to your original problem. The universe had a beginning, it is the effect of a cause, and Atheism by the very presumptive restrictions of it's world view cannot supply a cause for this effect. Which renders the atheist worst than an agnostic. It paints the atheist to have his eyes shut and fingers in his ears, screaming I will not listen to sound reasoning, and I do not want to seek after true knowledge.

As for the reason for life as given by Christianity is besides the point. It does not matter if the ultimate point of reality is reasonable to you in your own eyes. My point is that atheism cannot supply an ultimate point of reality, it is utterly pointless. But atheists still live their lives as though there is ultimate meaning. Its consistency of the belief system. Any belief system that can at least supply an ultimate point to reality is consistent with human nature. Atheism is inconsistent with human nature.






 
carlodog
Dec 26, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

It seems as though you have affirmed all my points. So I find a
major inconsistency. Even you seem to take for granted that the
'you' transcend your body in some way or fashion. You speak of
how much you agree with your worldview as if you had some kind of
choice in believing it. As if it was actually 'you' a 'person', a
'self' thinking and reading and studying, then after
contemplation choosing to believe it. But if you are correct you
did not do anything, nor did you choose anything. Because there
is no you. The you is merely an illusion, you do not have
personal identity.

You seem to operate under a major contradiction, not just
semantic, but a contradiction in concepts. For you ardently hold
to saying that the 'I', 'me', 'self' are only an illusion,
products of the brain. Yet, you make statements like this.

"I would opt to sleep forever, getting away from the troublesome
functions of my brain."

How could one 'get away from thefunctions of the brain' if the 'I' does not even exist. How can
the mind escape from the functions of the brain if the mind is
completely dependent on the brain.

This belief system does not harmonize with basic personal
experience. You cannot even speak in such a way that would be
consistent with your belief system. There is no 'you', pronouns
are useless. You cannot even communicate in a consistent way with
your belief.

Then you speak of choice as if it is real thing and it matters.
But choice cannot matter under determinism, because there is no
such thing as choice. Choice itself is merely an illusion. There
cannot be decision in any form. We are all just biological
machines doing whatever is chemically spelled out for us at any
given moment. There cannot be 'acting freely', for not action is
free.

If we are stuck at an impasse on this subject, then I do not see
how we can continue this debate with any consistency. Based on
your belief system we would be like two trees vainly trying to
carry a meaningful conversation.


 
carlodog
Dec 30, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: scienceforthewin Show

Point 1 is now resolved. So point 2 will now be point 1.

1). This is off topic I should have never entertained it. But it is a fascinating topic for me so I could not resist. Let me just say this one thing about it and if it interests you then I would be willing to have a battle on this subject. Aristotle made a distinction between an actual infinite and a potential infinite. I believe his distinction is relevant, it appears that you are speaking of a potential infinite which is a series of points that can logically go on into infinitum from a definite starting point. Meaning that a series of numbers or sequences can have a definite beginning but no end. But this is not an actual infinite, which has no beginning at all. If you want you can look at a previous rebuttal I made to Sexto on Feb 21, 2011 in this ( http://www.convinceme.net/coldebate/6809/Is-there-a-limit-to-how-many-times-a-physical-object-can-be-divided-.html ) debate. You may find it interesting, but I expound a little bit on Aristotle's distinction.

2) Dont worry about the ad hominin I was not offended by it. I just wanted to point out the logical inconsistency. Now with that resolved we will call point 3, point 2.

2) Here is a quote from Theudas that shows that he considers his life to have some form of meaning, "Despite not believing in a God, and despite not recognizing an absolute purpose, I see purpose as subjective. This is how you and I could live two very different lives, with two very different outcomes, yet feel as if we have lived fulfilling, meaningful lives."

Here is a quote from Alexcarrier Dec 17, 2011 "There are those atheists who find life has purpose, existentialists often find the meaning to their unique lives is determined by themselves."

I dont have the time to look through all the arguments with a fine tooth comb. But these are the main two people who have launched an argument against this point. Both of them can only proved a subjective meaning to life. I argue that this subjective meaning in the grand scheme of things is no meaning at all. It is only a poor attempt to provided meaning, in an ultimately meaningless reality.

In response to the limiting factors of the atheistic worldview, I primarily mean any factor that may exist outside of nature. By atheist I am talking about those who claim there is no God. I am not talking about those who call their selves 'atheists' but are truly agnostics, claiming they do not know if God exists, or are more inclined to believe He does not. I am speaking of those who fully claim that God does not exist. These people are limited by their denial of the supernatural.

A great example of this is in a Koth debate ( http://www.convinceme.net/viewKing?dib=1338 ) where Distort provides the Clarification and Guidelines for the debate topic. In it he demonstrates the restrictions of the atheistic worldview and how it prevents them from exploring any deeper into the question of origins.

 
carlodog
Dec 15, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

Sorry, but I do not see how you have arrived to your conclusion. How can you derive that God is a creation of man, based on the physical construction of the brain?

How does the physical construction of the brain prove there is no God?

 
empiriocritic
Dec 15, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

You do not know that. A human being comes to everything to which he knows only through experience. Matter is the term given to certain classifications of groups of sense-impressions. That is all it is.

This attack tries to replace the fundamental philosophical line of idealism (from thinking to being, from sensation to matter) with the reverse line of materialism. Spirit, consciousness, sensation, the psychical—is primary, and matter, nature, being, the physical—is secondary.

 
carlodog
Dec 15, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

Interesting argument. This is the way I understand you, correct me if I am wrong.

1. Objective reality exist independently of the human mind.
2. God is merely a subjective concept. (in the human mind)
3. Therefore, God must not exist (outside the human mind). Because objective reality exists interdependently of the human mind.

Then you seem to assume that the mind is not secondary to matter in any sense. That the mind is essentially chemical constructions of the brain.

Then you infer that if this argument does not prove that there is no God then humanity is essentially mechanical play toys of God. If this inference is put in a positive way, you are saying that if God exist human freedom does not.

This is the way that I understand you. If this is correct, then I find a few fundamental problems and presumptions. But I will refrain from posting them, until I fully understand your side; so that I do not attack a straw man.

 
individualeleven
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

Hello Carlodog,

First I want to say that it was refreshing to have an intellectual debate on this topic, I'm used to seeing bad arguments turn into personal assaults, so this is going well.

I also like most of everything you've said, including the golden rule, still requires a standard for morals. I had touched on that, but didn't conclusively state as much, and I'm glad you did.

I do however have some questions.
You stated:
"My point was that if one rejects the eternal universe, then they cannot by the very restrictions of their belief supply any answer as to why such a universe should be. One of the most fundamental questions that a person can apply their mind too, is that of: what is the purpose for reality? Without a cause for the universe, the answer to the purpose of reality is moot. "

If I'm getting this right you state that in order for there to be purpose for life, there must be purpose for creation.
But what I don't agree with is that if there was no god and our existence came to be out of a random accident, why still can't we create our own purpose afterward as sentient beings?
I would agree with you that for an atheist, still they would have to affirm life is meaningless, but not because they can't give purpose to creation, but because they can't give meaning after death. If it was possible to advert the death of the universe and figure out how to sustain an infinite universe with finite resources or to scientifically prove life after death aside from the christian view of heaven, then they could affirm meaning in their life now. But since they can't prove life after death and since an infinite universe is not possible, even if we could advert its death, then without a god as a factor, that is when they have to logically conclude life is meaningless.
For if no one is left to view our meaning after the universe passes away, then there was none to begin with.



 
carlodog
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

Hello to you Individualeleven,

I left this debate site for a long time, partly because of a new work schedule and life changes, but also because it was hard to find people who would actually argue the topics. It was just like you said bad arguments turning into personal assaults. When I saw a plethora of new members I decided to try it again. I also believe up to this point it is going well. I have also enjoyed your arguments as well, you seem to hand the issues well and are clear in your reasoning. That is a great strength. In reference to the golden rule, I got my argument from the book of Matthew in the New Testament, chapter 22:36-39, the connection between v. 37 and 39 supplied me with the argument.

In reference to your questions:
They can make up their own purpose. But this purpose would be a subjective purpose, different from one individual to another. But I say this is no purpose at all, when the individual dies so does their purpose. Their purpose amounts to nothing. It was only created by that person, because they could not bare the reality that their life was ultimately meaningless. This is not purpose this a grasping after the wind, this is a vain attempt to derive meaning where there is no meaning. Moreover, true purpose unites. If there is an ultimate purpose to reality, then that purpose would unite every individual. But as the atheists worldview stands they lack this ultimate purpose, and as a consequence lack ultimate unity. This means that billions of people live a life without ultimate meaning or purpose, so they ALL make up their own meaning. This is disunity and chaos. But we do not live in a world of disunity or chaos. So purpose must be derived from something transcendent to humanity. I do not believe that ultimate purpose is up to personal definition. Ultimate purpose is not subjective and cannot be so.

I say this even if they could create an afterlife by some means sustaining the universe eternally as well as life. Even this would not provide ultimate meaning, all meaning would still be subjective. There would just be billions and billions of people defining purpose for their selves, living forever in an eternal universe. True purpose must transcend the creation, otherwise it is subjective and useless.





 
carlodog
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

You must have spent quite some time on this massive response.

Because a person by the very restrictions of their belief system prevents them from being able to answer this fundamental question: What is the purpose of reality? They must accept that there is no purpose. Its not that they have not found the answer, they cannot even suppose there is a purpose. Because their belief system prevents them from supposing there is a purpose. So if the atheist wants to be consistent in their belief system then they must accept that there is no ultimate purpose to reality. This is nihilism.

You speak of people finding meaning to their lives as defined by their selves. What is the point if there is no ultimate purpose to life? There is no point at all. What difference does it make in the grand scheme of things if Bob the existentialist decides that his meaning and purpose in life is to help endangered polar bears? What difference does it make if the polar bears go extinct? There is no ultimate purpose for their existence, they are just here. When Bob the existentialist dies what difference does it make if he rescued 1000 polar bears from death? In the grand scheme of reality Bob's subjective purpose amounts to nothing. In the grand scheme of reality the polar bears existence amounts to nothing. It is all nothing and meaningless if there is no ultimate purpose to reality.

With this being the case, there being no ultimate purpose, and subjective purposes amount to nothing in the end. Then there is only one more question to ask: Why doesn't Bob the existentialist just kill himself now? His subjective purpose amounts to nothing, his existence amounts to nothing. Everything is meaningless without an ultimate purpose for reality. The only question worth entertaining is suicide. With there being no ultimate purpose to reality then why don't we just eat and drink because tomorrow we die?

The meaning of Exodus 20 and the criteria to enter the 'pearly gates' is irrelevant to the subject at hand. If you want to debate these subjects send me a friend request and we will set up a private debate.

Your entire position on ethics presupposes good and evil. You assume that "good is defined by 'moral' actions", but this definition begs the question. This is the same thing as saying good is defined by actions which are good, or in different words, good is defined by that which is good. This is circular reasoning. So your stance that "goodness can be reasoned and in fact is ingrained in intelligence", is pointless and is unfounded. With this being the case, you cannot even reason that something will be good and at the same time have sound logic.

To even have good and evil there must be an absolute standard. Or else there cannot be a moral nature to actions. The action of murdering a woman would be equivalent to a rock rolling down a hill. Both are actions and both do not have a moral nature, every action must be so if there is no objective difference between good and evil. Subjective distinctions and definitions cannot draw this line.

Then you go on to say that evolution explains morality. But again, there cannot be morality with out an objective standard. All actions are only actions without the objective standard. Nor does evolution explain why a person would give an elderly woman his seat on a full bus. How does it benefit the man to give up his seat and stand the entire drive. Why not let the old woman stand? This is a random act of kindness, but evolution does not explain this. In fact evolution cannot explain morality at all. The animal kingdom does not have ethics, like you said its survival of the fittest, in some scenarios ethics would be a hindrance to an individuals survival. Animals are doing just fine with out ethics, the orangutan whats to spread his genetics so he finds a female orangutan if she is with infants he kills them, forces sex on the female, spreads his seed and moves on with his life. Only doing what will benefit him. Last I heard the orangutan species are dong just fine. How does evolution explain why humanity would force repercussions on a man who murders a mothers children and rapes her only to inseminate her and spread his genes? This action does not hinder the advancement of the species, its survival of the fittest, according to the of evolution this action is actually beneficial to the human species and should be encouraged. Any man who can overpower another man, murder his children and take his woman, and force sex on her, is certainly more fit than the previous man, so his offspring would have the better genetics.

In reference to the abortion debate.
You confront me with moral dilemmas thinking that this would help your argument. But it only helps mine. These would not be challenging questions if there was no moral absolutes. The only reason why they are challenging is because there are moral absolutes. And you have not told me why there is even a debate in the first place. Why are people debating this topic if morals are truly relative? It should be an easy decision.

Concerning jurisprudence.
I did not say that every culture strived to formulate rights. I said every culture strived to develop laws that protect the same inherent rights. Its no that laws are established to 'represent' inherent rights, but to protect inherent rights. Laws where not established to 'work toward absolutes'. They where created to protect inherent human rights. This is a simple stance. It is absolutely obvious that the USA established its laws to this end, just read the works of the founding fathers. Then go and read the appendix of C. S. Lewis book Abolition of Man. He has provided the laws and customs of ancient cultures. In his work he showed that every ancient culture sought to protect the same inherent rights that we protect today. This proves that morals are absolute and this proof alone destroys your entire argument supporting relativism.

A universal negative, is a universal proposition that denies something of all members of a class. Such as to say there is no God. Universal negatives cannot be prove, because they require omniscience. No human has sufficient knowledge to know for certain that there is no God. It cannot be proven. For this reason there is no argument that can establish the proposition as an absolute fact or even to demonstrate it with any plausibility. I never said God's existence cannot be prove.






 
individualeleven
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

In order for an atheist to take a position of denial towards a god and not be bound to logic or science or even philosophy, would be one who maintains an opinion and nothing more. This of course gives no grounds to debate others beliefs.
So for technicality sake, I’ll say most atheists are bound to the means in which they stake their belief on.

I agree that it is impossible to prove or disprove god, however an all powerful god does not actually mean He can do anything. Omnipotent’s true meaning is that what ever God decides to do, He will do without fail. He cannot fail.
This makes the “can he create a rock he cannot lift” argument moot.

Science has never disproven the bible either and has actually validated it further.
The bible is currently the most accurate means of dating things through history.
Since all current dating methods have proven to be unreliable and has proven that millions of years old dinosaurs was wrong, the bibles timetable is far more accurate.
Look up the grand canyon experiment and how carbon dating proved the earth isn’t millions of years old.

What I mean by an infinite universe can’t support itself forever, is that matter and energy is finite in this universe. There are three major theories into the death of the universe.
The first is cold death, where the universe goes on forever but the heat and energy stretch out so thin that eventually everything reaches absolute zero.
Then there is heat death and the big crunch, but neither of those supports an infinitely expanded universe.

The earth being round was actually recorded in the bible first, centuries before Aristotle.

I agree that religion was used wrongly and even hindered science because of the people that sought power and control. But the bible does not contradict any scientific observations and even gave us some of the first scientific knowledge far before the secular world discovered it. The only areas that the bible will defy science is in the realm of theories where even such theories are debated even amongst the scientific community.

The bible was written in three languages by 40 different authors. Each copy of the original text was so methodically checked for detail that if a mistake was found, the entire copy was thrown out. The accuracy of the copies of the original text is so accurate that no other historical document can even compare. Just because something is written by men does not automatically mean it is flawed, especially when God is involved. The authors were divinely inspired. All 66 books from beginning to end are remarkable in its accuracy, harmony, and message.

The Kings James version of the bible is the closet to the original text in translation, all other translations are meant for easier reading and understanding by people of all reading levels. There is no telephone game mistakes when it comes to the bible.

Faith is meant for many reasons, however, faith in concerns to coming to God, is needed to enter into a relationship with God. Once in this relationship, we have a personal experience that can’t be truly explained in words. So yes we can’t initially know the truth of the beginning and the end, but afterward we can have a certainty that transcends earthly affirmation. We still continue to have faith, but that faith grows into new areas of our growth in our relationship with God.
Also since we claim faith, we actually don’t need to affirm our belief in the worlds confirmation process, since we don’t claim to prove God but that we know God.

So the purpose of accepting Jesus as savior is because humanity sinned and the price for sin is death. That is the law that God put out and in order to fulfill the law, God sent Jesus to become a sacrifice for all sins. Living a good life or not doesn’t matter when it comes to hell, for going to hell is now no longer about your sin but your choice to not accept Jesus. Jesus is the only way into heaven. There is two chances however, this life and after the resurrection, mentioned in revelations.

The bible explains itself when read fully, it doesn’t need self interpretation. However self interpretation or what we call revelations, are not meant to be changes for the whole, but for the individual’s life. For example, God is infinitely above our understanding, as such even the bible gives new insights for the believer in their personal walk with God. What may be true for one believer in their personal walk may not be true for another. For instant, the bible is not against drinking, only getting drunk beyond your senses; however for one individual, they may have a problem with getting drunk, so God may tell that person to not drink.
So where the bible says “thou shall not kill” when read in full, it means murder. Murder by definition, even in the bible, is not war, not self defense, but premeditated intent.
Abortion is murder, because God recognizes us in the womb, which from the bible, tells us that we have life even before we are born.

If a Christian does not study their faith, then any argument or testimony they can give is one of personal experience. The bible is the living word of God, it is paramount in growing in our relationship with God along with prayer and meditation. It is sad and I agree that many get caught up in there lives and put God second. That is why there are people like me that are out there to help provide teaching to other Christians and non Christians alike.

God is not wrong, and like I said before, one section of the bible is out of context from the rest of the bible. To understand it fully, one should read it fully.

“Your last sentence seems to contradict your first,
did I read incorrectly or did you call what you
claimed was knowledge at first, opinion in the end?
Please help me understand as I'm certain I've
misunderstood.”

My last point was that if an atheist’s belief is that of an opinion only, then from there view point, all other beliefs would be an opinion for those others and therefore is not grounds to give debate too. From my standpoint however, yes it is out of knowledge.

Christianity isn’t just faith. We can observe knowledge and science as well. We have no reason to come up with other theories however, but that does not mean we can’t help advance science in many other areas.

Also how can I be wrong? I said the bible doesn’t contradict any scientific observations currently known, only against theories yet unproven. Since a scientific theory is based on known evidence but is not conclusive, meaning it has room to change, be updated, or modified as new evidence comes to light. With that being said, scientific theory states man evolved from existing life forms, but this is unproven.

I say God created science as an extension of my belief, that I say God exists, because He created the universe and everything in it. However you can’t say that man created science, except as an opinion. Because as you said before, you can’t prove or disprove God. So the possibility is there.
And science especially physics encompasses everything in the universe, God gives plenty to guide towards Him, but He is not against humans advancing our knowledge.




 
individualeleven
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

I forgot to include your question on the six days.

http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/lie/why-six-days

This is a very good explanation.

 
individualeleven
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
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Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

Well said, good point, so I would conclude then too that without purpose for creation and without meaning after death, then life must be meaningless.

I'm glad you came back, I've learned much from this debate, I know a great deal about my faith, but I'm always eager to take my knowledge to the next level.

Thank you for your explanations.

 
individualeleven
Dec 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

Supernatural is not = to unknown as a definition.
From a human standpoint existing in a natural realm, what is in the supernatural realm is unknown.
Except where clues are given in the bible by God whom knows the supernatural realm.
I say it is more likely that God is a supernatural something or nothing, but I can't explain God, whom by definition is above our own understanding, infinitely.
However explaining God or what elements He and the supernatural realm is made of is not the real issue, nor needed for deriving His existence as a creator for our universe.
Being the real issue is that is it more plausible for a supernatural God or a natural entity to be the creator.
When the natural entity can't be explained or can't give ultimate meaning then regardless of how improbable, what remains becomes the most plausible truth.

Also just because you can't observe something, measure it, or quantify it, does not mean that it doesn't exist.
Just means we haven't reached the point where we can and perhaps we never will.
We can see observations however of the effects. Which is objective morality, ultimate purpose, intelligent design, and more. But since God determined we'd need faith in order to come to Him out of love and not fear, all observations we have will never be conclusive as proof of existence.

Your last question, I would say yes, what God is made of is responsible for His existence, which has always been, as He was not created and is the first cause.
This follows logically as well as biblically.

 
calistio
Dec 18, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

. Please forgive me if i come across offensive. I am new to this
form of debate and the last open forum type debate i partook in
was somewhat loose in it's level of human decency. I wish i has
time right now to look closer at your reply but i would like to
,for now. highlight this question singled out if i may ,.
--" What if a good deed is bad for the one doing it? "--, to
reply to this I think we would have to begin a new thread on
"what is love " because when one does makes a decision and acts
on it and that action brings about the betterment of of others
at the expense of self - this is the laying down of ones own life
(whether in the extreme of actual death or measured levels of
denying self gratification in order to enhance the life of
another ) and that is the highest form of morality - that is love
.

 
carlodog
Dec 18, 2011
0 convinced
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Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

Yes I can make the claim that if there is no ultimate purpose to reality then reality is ultimately meaningless.

This very claim is analytically true. Proposition 1. If there is NO ULTIMATE PURPOSE to reality. Then proposition 2, naturally follows. reality is ULTIMATELY MEANINGLESS. My argument cannot be any more clearer or basic.

If reality is ultimately meaningless, then everything contained within reality is ultimately meaninglessness as well, this includes ALL subjective life purposes, such as the subjective purpose of Bob the existentialist.


It is ok not to know the ultimate purpose, and seek to discover what that is. But my argument from the very beginning is that atheism cannot provide 'ultimate purpose'. Because the atheistic worldview prohibits such a purpose, the only thing the atheist can do is make up their own subjective purposes. But this is not consistent. Why would a person want to make a purpose for their selves in a reality that is ultimately purposeless? Which brings us back to my first proposition in this debate. Atheism cannot be lived out consistently.

Not did I ever say that a nihilist must commit suicide or even must entertain the thought. What I said is that the ONLY QUESTION WORTH ENTERTAINING for the nihilist is: why not suicide? EVERY other question to entertain is fundamentally useless and a waste of contemplation, because reality is ultimately pointless.

We are not debating my faith at all, so any biblical topic is irrelevant to this particular debate. We are debating the consistency or coherence of atheism. If you want to debate biblical exegesis or the criteria for salvation then send me a friend request and we will set up a private debate. Or start a battle and raise the point limit to the maximum.

This is how you have begged the question.
First let me define circular reasoning (begging the question). Its when your concluding premise is contained in your supporting premises.

You were arguing that goodness can be reasoned and is ingrained in intelligence.Then you proceeded to define what 'goodness' is. You said, "Goodness is defined by moral actions." Your definition of goodness begs the question by using morality to define goodness. Your statement is the equivalent of saying goodness is defined by good actions. Or in simpler words your definition equates to goodness is defined by that which is good, or goodness is goodness. This amounts to absurdity and does not define what goodness is.

The other way to take this definition is if you were saying, goodness is defined by evil and good actions. But this is absurd.

The last way to this definition can be taken is to say that, goodness is defined by evil. Which is also absurd.

I gave you the benefit of the doubt and assumed you were proposing the least absurd thing.
If any of these ways are to be chosen you still presuppose that there is a fundamental difference between good and evil, which there cannot be if there is no absolute transcendent standard of morality. Your definition does not work. And with this illogical flawed definition there is no way that a person could every reason what goodness is.

In your whole paragraph about the orangutan you still presuppose there is a fundamental difference between good and evil, but using words that have a moral nature like 'rape' and 'hate'. These words have no meaning if morals are relative. Moreover, there is no reason why they should be discouraged in our society they do not help us live more efficiently. The orangutans are doing just fine without such actions being discouraged. Moreover, if evolution is true then it would be better for the human species to act like orangutans. Morality only hinders the survival of the fittest. Evolution fails to account for morality

Its not that moral dilemmas are challenging to me only. They are challenging to everyone. The ones on abortion may not be as challenging to everyone for the simple fact that not everyone agrees that life starts at conception. Suppose that there are 4 people stranded in the ocean on a life boat that can only support 3 people. Either one person must be thrown overboard or all will die. What would a person do? If you are a relativist this should not be a problem for you, just throw them all over, that means more supplies for you and longer survival. But any honest person would admit that this is truly a dilemma. Even the relativist would find it a challenge to toss the other person over board. This would not be challenging if there was no moral absolutes. Morals are not determined by circumstance. If that were true then it would be moral to throw one of the other people overboard for the survival of the three. By your very proposition that morals are determined by circumstance you are bordering on utilitarianism.

Once again people do not debate on abortion because their notions of morality differ, this is only a surface observation. The debate goes deeper than that. As I have pointed out before, the debate is founded on inherent rights. Does a woman's right to liberty allow her to invade another persons right to life? Being that no person would ever say that life must give way to liberty, Pro-choice says that the embryo does not posses life. So the woman is entitled to her right to liberty, because the other party 'embryo' does not have a right to life. It would be immoral to infringe on her right to liberty. Pro-life states the embryo is a living being, so he/she is entitled to life. With this being the case it would be immoral to infringe on the embryo's right to life. The mothers right to freedom most be infringed on. Because liberty always gives way to life. For without life there would be no liberty. Read up on the arguments and you will see that this is the case, both sides appeal to an inherent right, either life or liberty. Without these rights there would be no debate at all.

If you do not live as though you have inherent rights. Then go ahead and put up a sign in your front yard that says : I HAVE NO RIGHTS, COME RAPE MY WIFE, ROB MY HOUSE, AND MURDER ME. People do live as though there are absolute standard of morality. This fact of life, is clear and evident when a person is wronged. All of humanity says this "It is always absolutely wrong to hurt me."

Have you ever read the Declaration of Independence? It is clearly stated that the laws that govern the USA were established to protect the inherent rights of the people.

Again you are only looking at the judicial system with a superficial view. Why protect, interests and deposits? Is it not because people have a right to happiness? Why protect people? Is it not because they have the right to life and liberty?

You ask: If rights (laws) protect inherent human rights, why is it they can be taken away? Before I answer observe my amendment to your question. Notice the word in the parentheses. Laws are eliminated and amended and instituted not because the human right has changed, but because we have discovered a better way to protect that right. Perhaps a certain threat to the right is eliminated, then the law can also be eliminated. Suppose that we learn human life is safer with the speed limit reduced, so we amend the speed limit laws.

You say my argument makes no case that laws have anything to do with inherent human rights. Again I say read the Declaration of Independence. Thomas Jefferson made it absolutely clear that the laws of the USA are specifically designed to protect the inherent rights of humanity. Read the appendix of Abolition of Man, by C. S. Lewis. These works show what it is that I am arguing. Now on the contrary you have not shown how my argument is not sound. I have explained how and provided resources for you that shows that laws are established to protect rights.

You ask: Your absolutes would exists whether law did or not, how do laws have anything to do with that? Laws are an evidence for the absolute nature of morality. This is evidenced by the fact that every culture in every time has made laws that protect the same rights in one fashion or another. This can only be explained if morals are absolute. this answer applies to your other two. My argument on abortion, and this of laws demonstrates that morality is absolute.

You say "There are no absolutes and man has created laws for various purposes, the most important of which is to create order in chaos." The animal kingdom does just fine without a judicial system, they do not live in chaos. They live in a world full of non-moral actions, they are doing just fine. This does not explain why laws were instituted. The primary function of human law is to protect rights, now there are laws to maintain order, but you cannot say this is the primary reason. Read the ancient cultures laws, read the Declaration of Independence.

To say there is no God, is the same thing as saying I believe there is no God. In this sense the belief is also a fact. Now it cannot be proven that there is no God. IT would most certainly require omniscience to prove that. If I am wrong then prove me wrong and provide for me argument that proves there is no God.

 
carlodog
Dec 18, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

I will agree with that, although this subject could be expounded even deeper if we set our minds to it. Nonetheless, I believe we are on the same page. I also am eager to take my knowledge to the next level, no because I love knowledge but because it helps me to understand God better. Its in Him that we live and move and have our being. The more we learn about the creation, is the more we learn about Him.

If you ever want to discuss theological topics let me know. I will be happy to engage in discussion about the teachings of the Bible and other theological topics. I think that I sent you a friend request.

Take care.

 
individualeleven
Dec 18, 2011
0 convinced
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Rebuttal to: carlodog Show

I accepted it and yeah I would love to discuss theological topics as well.

 
individualeleven
Dec 18, 2011
0 convinced
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Rebuttal to: alexcarrier Show

I'm not saying the bible is the most accurate way of dating things like the common items around a house, but as a time line for creation, civilizations, people, events, ect...
Radiometric dating was found to be wrong by carbon dating.
Your link requires membership, so I will not be viewing it, however this is the reference in which I used:
S.A. Austin, editor, Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe (Santee, CA: Institute for Creation Research, 1994), pp. 120-131.
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1386766/posts

You ask me to prove finite matter and energy. I use the current laws of energy or thermodynamics.
Energy is not created or destroyed, but transferred from one form to another. There is usable forms and unusable forms. If mankind could figure out how to use the unusable forms, then it still would only support a non expanding universe for eternity. As it stands and according to cold death, if the universe continues to expand forever, then energy will be stretched out so thin that all temperatures of the universe will approach absolute zero.
Matter is finite because the second law of thermodynamics says it will eventually, and inevitably, all become energy.
http://bioweb.wku.edu/courses/biol280/280mat.html

I understand in the past we didn't know things and later in the future we learned new things.
None of my argument contradicts that.

You said "You seem to think science needs to explain
everything before it can be considered fact."
I'm not talking about objective truth. Yes the world was round before we discovered it.
(BTW the verses for round earth in the bible: Job 26:10, Prov 8:27, Isaiah 40:22, Amos 9:6.)
I'm talking about the science world, where a scientific theory becomes accepted by supported observational evidence. If it were to become a fact, then it would need to be conclusively proven and wouldn't be able to evolve or change with new evidence.
You asked for other science in the bible:
http://www.godlessgeeks.com/LINKS/ScientificBible.htm
http://www.bible.ca/b-science-evidences.htm

God asserts the bible, the bible asserts God, would be circular reasoning if that was all it was.
Archeology asserts the accuracy of the bible and it's time-line.
Recorded history outside the bible asserts the bible.
Science asserts the bible, as listed in above references.
Prophesy fulfilled validates the divinity of the bible.
The "ideas" of God was present in history far before the bible was written.
Why should my answer be an opinion or "I don't know" ?
I have reason. I have logic. I have even science observations.
Faith isn't blind. Jesus did not come and command everyone to believe. He taught.
Just because nothing will conclusively prove God, doesn't mean we don't have a great deal of evidence to support our faith.

Hell's laws did not change, the price for sin was paid.
Everyone has a chance to hear about Jesus, even if your in a remote place with no other person around ever. God will reveal himself when sought and is always revealing himself to varying degrees in the earth.
As well as after the resurrection all will have another chance to choose Him.
This has nothing to do with the truth of reality depending on the subject.
This is going to happen regardless if you believe it or not.
As is according to the Christian faith.

Dictionary definition:
Murder:
/The unlawful premeditated killing of one human being by another./
War is not included in this.
The Hebrew word used for killing is ratsach, which refers to intentional killing without cause. War has cause. Self defense has cause.
Exodus 20 is one context of a larger picture. You don't need to read the entire bible for one understanding but doing so will give you the larger picture. Especially when Jesus explains the laws given to Moses.
You can also study the original hebrew if you want a clearer picture that way too.

If you've never read the entire bible, then you really can't make any claims for what it is good for.
And you can't prove God doesn't exist, but you already know that.

Logic puts God as the most plausible reason for our universe's creation.
Atheism can't hold claim to a meaningful life, when the belief holds you from it.
Why would you not seek an alternative view then?





 
carlodog
Dec 19, 2011
0 convinced
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Rebuttal to: individualeleven Show

I created a private debate to have our discussion. It is titled open discussion on theology. You should be able to access it through your profile page.

 
carlodog
Dec 22, 2011
0 convinced
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Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

I posted my response to you at the bottom of the page. Our column was beginning to become to thin.





 
individualeleven
Dec 23, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: pastthefuture Show

Ok, then explain how nature itself caused our universe without a creator.
You are right on "it is not an issue of subtracting out the unexplained"... However that is not what I was doing.
I was showing with logic that God is the most likely answer. Objective morality and ultimate purpose, shows us that something else is needed to give purpose to our lives that nature can't give by accident, which is then definable as a standard. Show me how this "teleological" argument as you say, breaks down. I also stated before that it is points in a direction of God, not as absolute proof, but as supporting evidence to a more probable cause.

So you're saying that the universe didn't expand infinitely into the past because time is simply another dimension intertwined with space? How does that work again?
Dismantling time isn't going to unravel the lifespan of the universe. The logic is that it had a beginning and required a cause that had no cause of its own. The first cause. I'm not sure if you're suggesting that there was no beginning or if there was and nature could cause about its own existence.

You made several blanketed statements with no explanations.

 
carlodog
Dec 28, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: scienceforthewin Show

1) I use the word 'eternal' in its most common meaning, which is as defined by the Websters New World Dictionary "without beginning or end; existing through all time; everlasting". Notice the 'without beginning part'. So it is with dictionary.com, thefreedictionary.com, .merriam-webster.com, answers.com, and dictionary.net. You will notice that the first definition provided says "without beginning". This is the most common usage of the term.

I did use the exact word that I intended to use.

On a side note nothing that ever comes into beginning can ever reach an 'infinite age'. Infinite by its very nature is without beginning or end. No universe if it comes into being can ever be infinite, because it had a definite beginning point.

The atheist must believe in an eternal universe in order to be able to be consistent. If the atheist rejects the eternal universe then they shut their self out of any further knowledge. The atheist cannot say "I don't know", the atheist must say, "I can't know". The only way that an atheist can have a system of knowledge that is not limited by his worldview is if they believe in the eternal universe. But if the atheist rejects the eternal universe and accepts the fact that it came into being, he cannot by the very restrictions of his world view gain anymore knowledge than that.

Any atheist who rejects the eternal universe and goes probing into the origins of the universe is acting in a way that is inconsistent with the restrictions of his worldview. And is only demonstrating that his worldview cannot satisfy his human nature to gain the knowledge of ultimate meaning and reality.

2) Your ad hominin was discreet but there none the less. You said, "If you followed science even remotely". Such a statement could only be taken to discredit me as a person and not my argument.

3) If you have read the arguments of my opponents in regard to this point, they clearly demonstrate that they consider their lives to have some form of meaning. As to what that meaning is is besides the point. My about atheism as a whole was that it cannot be lived our consistently. This point about meaning was only a premise that I used to illustrate my main point. The illustrating point being that, Atheists by the tenets of their worldview must maintain that reality is ultimately meaningless. Yet, atheists live as though the reality of their lives has some form of meaning.

4) The main reason why I did not want to answer this question is because of the context in which it was asked. These types of questions turn into Red Herrings, and demand the attention of the debate to shift from the original point to a secondary point that has no contingency on the original point. I want to keep our focus on the issues of the original point of the debate.

For the satisfaction of your interest I will answer the question in the most basic form, and if you want to discuss this topic in any deeper detail then start a battle with a maximum point level. The primary reason for life is for Gods own glory.

Thank you for your arguments.

 
individualeleven
Dec 30, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: sambt5 Show

Hello sambt5,
I will respond to your points in the same numerical fashion.

1. The first thing created by the divine Word was "light," the elementary light, or light-material, in distinction from the "lights," or light-bearers, bodies of light, as the sun, moon, and stars, created on the fourth day, are called. It is now a generally accepted truth of natural science, that the light does not spring from the sun and stars, but that the sun itself is a dark body, and the light proceeds from an atmosphere which surrounds it. Light was the first thing called forth, and separated from the dark chaos by the creative mandate, "Let there be,"-- the first radiation of the life breathed into it by the Spirit of God, inasmuch as it is the fundamental condition of all organic life in the world, and without light and the warmth which flows from it no plant or animal could thrive.

In Gen 1.3 "light" is Hebrew 'owr meaning "illumination."
In Gen 1.16 "lights" is Hebrew ma'owr meaning a luminary or light holder.
Ergo, God made light, and then he made "light bulbs" (sun & other stars).

2. Omnipotent true meaning is God's ability to do that which He wants to do. It is not the power to do anything but only anything that is accordance to His will. God cannot sin, He cannot create a square circle, He cannot fail. He will succeed to do anything He wills to do. With that being said, He does not will to prevent sin. He hates it sure, but to prevent it means to have a world without evil and thus a world without free choice to choose to love and obey God. Another way to look at this is, if God parted the clouds and raised a lightning bolt above the earth and demanded that all choose Him or go to hell, all would do so out of fear and not love. Faith was needed to bring mankind into a position of acceptance of an all powerful God in order to learn to love such a being. We were created for a relationship with the God and to worship Him for His glory. That is why He doesn't cure all disease and solve world hunger, for it would be definable proof of His existence. He gives us just enough in science to step out in faith towards belief in Him.

3. Slavery from both the Old testament and the New was of a completely different nature than the slavery of today. According to Old Testament law, anyone caught selling another person into slavery was to be executed:
"He who kidnaps a man, whether he sells him or he is found in his possession, shall surely be put to death." (Exodus 21:16)
Unlike our modern government welfare programs, there was no safety-net for ancient Middle Easterners who could not provide a living for themselves. In ancient Israel, people who could not provide for themselves or their families sold them into slavery so they would not die of starvation or exposure. In this way, a person would receive food and housing in exchange for labor.
So, although there are rules about slavery in the Bible, those rules exist to protect the slave. Injuring or killing slaves was punishable - up to death of the offending party. Hebrews were commanded not to make their slave work on the Sabbath, slander a slave, have sex with another man's slave, or return an escaped slave. A Hebrew was not to enslave his fellow countryman, even if he owed him money, but was to have him work as a hired worker, and he was to be released in 7 years or in the year of jubilee (which occurred every 50 years), whichever came first. In fact, the slave owner was encouraged to "pamper his slave".
Since many of the early Christians were slaves to Romans, they were encouraged to become free if possible, but not worry about it if not possible. The Roman empire practiced involuntary slavery, so rules were established for Christians who were subject to this slavery or held slaves prior to becoming Christians. The rules established for slaves were similar to those established for other Christians with regard to being subject to governing authorities. Slaves were told to be obedient to their master and serve them sincerely, as if serving the Lord Himself. Paul instructed slaves to serve with honor, so that Christianity would not be looked down upon.
As with slaves, instructions were given to their masters as to how they were to treat their slaves. For example, they were not to be threatened, but treated with justice and fairness. The text goes on to explain that this was to be done because God is the Master of all people, and does not show partiality on the basis of social status or position.
Contrary to the claims of many skeptics, the New Testament proclaims that all people are equal in the eyes of God - even slaves:
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28)
knowing that whatever good thing each one does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether slave or free. (Ephesians 6:8)
And masters, do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him. (Ephesians 6:9)
a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all. (Colossians 3:11)
The idea that God or Christianity encourages or approves of slavery is shown to be false. In fact, anybody who was caught selling another person into slavery was to be executed. However, since voluntary slavery was widely practiced during biblical times, the Bible proscribes laws to protect the lives and health of slaves. Paul, the author of many of the New Testament writings, virtually ordered the Christian Philemon to release his Christian slave from his service to "do what is proper". In addition, numerous verses from the New Testament show that God values slaves as much as any free person and is not partial to anyone's standing before other people.

4. King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
“It is He that sitteth upon the circle of the earth...” The bible was the first source to give that the world was actually round. http://www.trueorigin.org/flatearth01.asp

5. The bible is not against technological or even scientific advancement. It is true that bad people and groups of people used religion and the bible to maintain power and control over others but this behavior was due to people not the religion.

6. That statement is not even a proper conjecture. Seeing that there is now over 7 billion people on this planet your belief is nothing but fallacious. http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/einstein.html here is one example of one of the most intellectual minds in our history, Einstein, whom as indicated by this article as being best described as being agnostic and definitely not atheist.

7. This entire segment hinges on God existing definably, as if proven to be fact. Since you can't prove nor dis-prove God then any belief in Him is out of faith and or faith with supporting evidence. Either way, free will still exists because you can't truly fear God and His punishment of hell if you can't prove He is real. Therefore any belief in Him is a choice of faith, a choice of free will.

8. The Christian belief is God is eternal, without a beginning and will have no end. He was the first cause of the universe. The moment He decided to set things in motion, time began for us (the universe and everything in it). After moment zero, time moves forward, and so can creation. As it is today, new life, new creations continue to emerge. Your last question in your chain of logic doesn't follow conclusively.

9. The bible is not against scientific advancement, medicines or discoveries alike. It is only against some scientific theories that are even debated amongst the scientific community. Here is a site for scientific accuracy of the bible: http://www.pb.org/pbdocs/bibleac.html

10. The bible has never been changed or edited to adapt with what we want. The book of Mormon has done this, but not the bible. King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. The bible is not against translations into other languages and doing so does not mean a loss of meaning or text. The bible's original texts are still intact and its accuracy has been validated extensively. http://www.islamic-awareness.org/Bible/Text/Bibaccuracy.html

11. Very good question, Mark 15:25 vs. John 19:14-15 - The Time of the Crucifixion
Mark 15:25 Jesus was crucified at the third hour VS. John 19:14-15 says the sixth hour.
Mark figures the time by Jewish reckoning, where the day would start at sundown and be broken into segments. We still see this today as observant Jews start their observance of the Sabbath at sundown. This would make the third hour to be about noon.
The Romans reckoned their time differently and their segments were longer. Ancient Roman sundials show that the daylight hours were divided into twelve equal segments, or hours. However, there were only two major segments, daytime and nighttime, with the hours beginning at sunrise and counted until sunset. Therefore, this makes the sixth hour in Roman time also about noon. John's audience was the Gentile church, so John uses Roman time throughout His Gospel.

 
individualeleven
Jan 02, 2012
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: cochran724 Show

What is this science that disproves Christianity? I assume that you know since you've based your beliefs of non-theism on it. You speak of logic proving otherwise for Santa as an analogy for children being told christian beliefs. So do you have a logic path for no God exists too? How much do you actually know about Christianity? Have you read the bible? You call it crap and manipulation but what actual info do you have for support of your statement? Or are you merely speaking out of ignorance? If you believe atheism to be correct, then why is there a void for the question... in the first place?

 
individualeleven
Jan 02, 2012
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: urwutuis Show

The argument is for a standard of morality, is that a standard transcends human beings, it is inherent in every single person for the same set of rights and wrongs. Morality on a group level is subjective, not inherent, and varies on the individual and or groups of individuals. That is not a standard for all. As doing the right thing can be different for you than it is for me. Which then means that for lunatics like Hitler, the right thing for his people was exterminating the Jews. Therefore with no standard for good and evil, how can you judge what is more evil between things like cheating and murder and be consistent in your atheism on morality based on group levels only?

1. The bible is the word of God for two reasons. One it is written in it as so and two, there have been over 2000 prophesies that came true, including most with very specific details. No other book or religion can make that claim and have the archaeological evidence and historical testimonies to back it up.

2. The fossil record as given by radiometric dating has already been proven false by carbon dating. But all current forms of dating have had inconsistencies including matching with each other. Therefore all current methods are unreliable as any kind of proof against the bible's timeline which has been proven to be very accurate, according to archaeology and other historical documents that matches the bible.

3. Spell 125 of the Book of the Dead, contrary to the Book of Exodus, contains a moral code represented in a form of Negative Confession that the dead person has to recite when he descends to the hall of the Two Truths. It is in no way written in the same fashion and only has 8 out of the 10 to be similar as far as same topics.
Yet this only proves atheism is wrong. The fact that these two statements are similar means that there is a standard for inherit rights and good and evil.

4. There was a law written by Moses (Mosaic Law) and this law (given to him by God) is never associated with the eternal moral code, the Ten Commandments, which has in fact operated from the very beginning of human history. Even though the Ten Commandments were not written down until Mount Sinai, they were understood and honoured by the earliest patriarchs. Even Cain knew that it was a sin to kill because we find in Genesis 4:7 that God told him “sin lieth at the door” when he murdered his brother Abel.

It is not possible for sin to exist where there is no law. God's Word teaches “where no law is, there is no transgression.” Romans 4:15. And again we are told in 1 John 3:4, “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” We see this principle further amplified by Paul in Romans 7:7 when he says, “I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.” These scriptures alone prove that no sin can be imputed where the Ten Commandment law is not in effect. This is absolute proof that the moral law was in effect at the very beginning of the Old Testament.

The ten commandments was given as a covenant to the Israelites that had escaped captivity and had reformed there culture after so much time lost without a country. It was to establish the inherent moral code on "paper" so to speak as the law and also demonstrate God's power to His people, as they all heard His voice and trembled at before it.

5. "Doesn't the ease with which you see all other religions as misguided lead you to suspect your own may be the same?" - Christianity isn't a religion, it is a relationship with God. A religion is man's way to God. We as humans are incapable of getting to God on our own. So through Jesus and faith, we come to Him and then we can grow in a relationship with God. It is an experience that we have that transcends all knowledge and understanding. If you could ever feel His presence, you'd never doubt.
Observing science and logic only affirms our faith further. No other religion can make the claim for divine word of God with supporting evidence to back it up. Only Christianity can do this.

6. In order for free will to exist to give man a choice to choose the creator and to pursue Him and learn to love Him without fear, the world and mankind's nature had to be this way. There could be no other way to give mankind the option for loving Him unless He allowed the possibility for sin. This does not mean He is the author of sin, but that He doesn't willfully prevent it. He gave Jesus as a sacrifice for us because He loved us so much to pay for the sins that we committed and will commit. Going to hell will forever be a choice of not choosing God and not because of sin.

7. fat chance and slim chance... I can answer that, but I don't see the point of the question in relation to the topic. If you really want to know, the answer is on google.

 


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