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Tag: theism

November 4 2009

Q: What’s with all of this animosity between Christians and atheists lately?

A: Lately? This crap has been going on for (literally) thousands of years. It just wasn’t until the invention of the internet that we finally got to see the theism debate argued across the spectrum. We have intelligent people, idiotic people, atheists, theists, agnostics, people that could give less than a crap, people that think this is the most important debate of all time, liberals, conservatives, anarchists, fascists, and all opinions in between interacting over the issue where they normally sat at home and kept most of their opinions to themselves.

For the most part, the people you read in here are the vocal and opinionated ones. Whether they’re atheists or theists, the opinions you’re most likely to read are those that are the most expressed. And the contention between theists (almost all of whom believe that atheists are idiots) and atheists (almost all of whom believe that theists are idiots) is front-and-center in Yahoo! Answers. The format of this site makes it difficult to have a conversation, so people subvert those restrictions by attempting to spout their opinions instead of answering questions.

Consequently, you get a lot of people that are mostly just responding out of a knee-jerk reaction to a question they’re passionate about. It doesn’t make their argument any more or less valid; it just makes it more obvious because it’s right there on the page for everyone to read. And the fact that everyone reads it makes people think they can argue instead just answer. So the atheists get annoyed with the idiotic theist questions/answers and the theists get annoyed with the arrogant atheist questions/answers.

As long as their faith convinces theists that they are correct, they will assume their arguments to be correct. And as long as their reason convinces atheists that they are correct, they will assume their arguments to be correct. And if both sides “know” they’re right, then the debate is fundamentally doomed to being contentious and hostile. Try not to worry about it. We’ll grow up eventually.

October 22 2009

Q: If you could ask God any question, what would it be? and what would be the question that God asks in response?

A: Eric: Why are you so explicit in the Bible but so silent in nature?
God: How would I get people to read my book if they knew the ending?

October 22 2009

Q: Atheists: Could you argue IN FAVOR of Theism?
This is more a poll about debate skills than principles. I know from my own debate experience that I rely on the rules of logic to form a sound argument. I also think that I can argue from either side of most debates effectively…with the exception of creationism. That one is lost on me.

So, how confident are the atheists on R&S in those debate skills?

Can you argue from the other side? If yes, I’d love to see a brief summary of the argument…look for mine in the additional details.

The argument, specifically, would be in advocacy of belief in a particular model of a supernatural creator. No “a god could exist” cop-outs…but I will leave the exact model open for your discretion.

Theists, you’re welcome to join in the fun here, and argue from atheism (as a lack of belief, not a belief that no god exists)…but I do plan on giving you your very own follow-up question…

Best answer awarded to most sound argument either from the other side, or presented as an explanation to why no argument can be formed from the other side.

A: As a former theist, I have no problem seeing things from their perspective. I believe that they come about their decision rationally, though I believe their final assumptions are irrational. That is not to say they are stupid, crazy, or anything like that. The truth is most people come about their decisions using a rational viewpoint. The problem comes when rational decisions are based on irrational logic or factually incorrect beliefs.

If you look outside and see that the sky is black, you may rationally conclude that the sky is black. And who could argue with that fact? At night the sky is, in fact, black. When the sun comes up the next day and the sky turns out to be blue, this doesn’t mean that you came about your assumption irrationally; it just means that your perception was flawed and it led you do an incorrect belief.

Considering the apparent evidence that theists give for the existence of God, I can see why they would be led to believe. Our brains tell us to believe, so we interpret everything we see through that lens. And if a lens has a flaw, even someone with perfect vision will see the world through obscured eyes.

October 8 2009

Q: This question was asked yesterday. Would the religious do the same for atheist?
Atheists, If religion was outlawed would you fight for freedom of religion?
Freedom of religion is considered a fundamental civil right, if it was to be prohibited (like it was under the Stalin regime) would you fight alongside Christians, Muslims, etc. to get back your right even though it does not affect you?

A: Unlike most religious people, atheists are not spiritually selfish. When you hear about an atheist fighting “against” something religious, they’re mostly fighting for their own religious freedoms. Atheists (obviously) aren’t religious people but they are often very spiritual, so they recognize persecution even when it’s not directed at them. And in my mind, religious freedom *is* a right of all people and should be fought for by everyone. That doesn’t mean suppressing one religion in favor of another, and that includes the “religion” of atheism.

October 8 2009

Contrary to popular belief, evolutionists make no claim that biological evolution proves that God does not exist. In fact, many leaders in the field of evolutionary theory are theists, and many of them have no problem reconciling their beliefs with their work. All attempts to disprove evolution have proven futile. Considering this, doesn’t it make more sense that God created evolution than the idea that proving evolution happened somehow disproves God’s existence?

This untruth was born out of a mix of religion and politics. Creationist’s primary goal these days is to force the teaching of their beliefs in public schools, and they know that something must have a scientific basis in order to be a part of public education. (Notice we have no classes on astrology or acupuncture.) A Creationist’s beliefs are centered around the idea that God created the universe, and anything that appears to prove their beliefs is important to them. Makes perfect sense. The problem is that Creationism as a workable theory is so vague that it can never hold up to scientific rigors; not to mention the fact that it is obviously a political movement working under the guise of religious freedom.

All believers in God (whichever one you’re talking about) believe that the universe was created by a higher power. Evolution has been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt; the only debates now center on each of the many processes that drive it. Given this, Creationists should view evolution as one of the many “miracles” performed by God. But their political motivations have distorted the debate to the point where their main argument now is that evolution a man-made concept intended to improperly teach people about the origins of life.

Oh, the irony.

December 2 2003

Saying that you can’t prove or disprove the existence of God has been the cop-out for the God debate for as long as I’ve been aware of it. Atheists, Christians, and primarily agnostics use this idea when it all comes down to agreeing to disagree. For the longest time, I was accepting of the idea and admitted that there was no way to prove or disprove it. It’s like you said, we just had to take it on faith. Well, I do not believe that all the people that believe in evolution believe it purely on faith. Sure, there are scientists out there that do, but the exceptions never define the rules.

I no longer accept the idea that the existence of God is neither provable nor disprovable. Everything is provable or disprovable. There is a yes/no answer to everything. You just have to define all the variables, and sometimes that is hard. In many cases it’s impossible logistically. We can prove that there are X number of human children that have been born with red hair, if only we could go back in time and count ALL of the redheads that were ever born. The task sounds ridiculously hard (or impossible?) to do, but it is definitely a provable or disprovable idea.

I find ample proof to explain why both sides of the God debate can (in their own minds) be considered correct and fully compliant with each person’s logic. For the theists, the proof is in the faith. There is no need question it because it IS true to them. Any attempt to prove that God doesn’t exist just seems like blasphemous desperation. On the other hand, atheists base their proof in their understanding of theology, the human mind, and evolution. I understand where the feeling for God comes from, and I understand why people want (and need) it. It all makes perfect sense, even down the idea that there is no way to prove or disprove it.

It’s not that I believe in evolution because I don’t believe in God. I don’t believe in God because I understand evolution.