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MrV
MrV
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November 10th, 2011 at 12:36:46 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

Religion is more like anabolic steriods. It is not about just living out my days trying to just carry on or sqweak by. Religion is about living life to the fullest. Religion allows me to thrive and grow stronger through life experiences. Religion adds excitment and meaning to life, it makes everything an adventure and gives you the power to push yourself to try to reach new heights.



Gee, it sounds like you are describing gambling.

Coincidence?

I think not.
"What, me worry?"
rxwine
rxwine
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November 10th, 2011 at 3:16:34 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

Religion is more like anabolic steriods. It is not about just living out my days trying to just carry on or sqweak by. Religion is about living life to the fullest. Religion allows me to thrive and grow stronger through life experiences. Religion adds excitment and meaning to life, it makes everything an adventure and gives you the power to push yourself to try to reach new heights. I imagine and hope you are indeed very happy, but my motivation for conversion of souls is not based on guilt, fear, etc. but rather is all about hoping everyone could experience the true deep joy that comes from working with God to make this world a better place.



Leave "god" out, and it's one of those motivational courses.
Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?
Nareed
Nareed
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November 10th, 2011 at 6:56:44 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

I think the weakest arguement for atheism is the old 'wait and see' approach. Since you seem to be saying just wait and see and science will figure this all out,



That's not an argument for atheism. It's a simlpe statement regarding knowledge and ignorance. we know more about the universe now than we did in the apst. It's logical to assume, since there is much research going on in all fields, that we will know more in the future than we do now. Further, it is wrong to suggest causes or explanations without any evidence.

Should a curious oncologist figure out how cancer behaves, determine all mechanisms it uses to thrive, and figure out how to slow it down or stop it? Or should he look at a tumor and say; "God did it," offer his sympathies to the patient and consider his work done?

Quote:

Wishing you had all the answers right now concerning why and how we exist doesn't mean it IS ever going to happen. Why ignore the obvious and logical answer that something did the creating and made it full of beauty.



You're making a bunch of errors:

1) You assume there is a reason why the universe, the earth and humanity exist.
2) You assume something created everything
3) You use the first assumption to prove the second, and the second to prove the first, as it suits you. You're engaging in the perfect circular definition: "there is a god because we exist for a reason and the world is beautiful; the world is beautiful and we exist for a reason because there is a god who made it so."

In other words, your argument is a two-headed coin.
Donald Trump is a fucking criminal
NowTheSerpent
NowTheSerpent
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November 10th, 2011 at 9:08:56 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

...It is wrong to suggest causes or explanations without any evidence.



I would say, though, that the very first humans to speculate God or gods as a cause of phenomena were actually making a plausible hypothesis thumb, given the knowledge they had at that time.
FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 10th, 2011 at 9:34:33 AM permalink
Quote: thecesspit


Why is it irresponsible? Belief in something we cannot prove, see or directly interact with could be deemed irresponsible. Telling people the wrong thing could be said to be irresponsible.....

I don't wish I had all the answers right now. I accept there are things I will never know, like who sent me a Valentine when I was 16, whether or not that guy had AK in my first poker tournament or if there is life in another Galaxy. But I can make educated guesses to all there.

Because it is neither logical OR obvious. One particular answer to a half asked question is not a reason to believe in the Christian God. Your arguments barely satisfy the need for a deity (the Deist approach isn't a horrible theory. Flawed to me, but I think the Deists had something going on there...)

Anyways, I am hardly celebrating religion here and I've stomped in my muddy atheist shoes. I must be a frustrated and sad individual (in-side joke, no offense meant, FrGamble)



Your muddy shoes are welcome here along with your good posts. Maybe your visit will knock some mud off and cheer you up a little bit (just a joke).

If we are making educated guesses about why and how we are here than it is much more logical and obvious to believe in God. Maybe irresponsible is the wrong word, but how would you describe the choice to prefer a belief in nothingness, ultimate futility, and accidental unexplainable existence to a belief in meaningfulness, ultimate purpose, a loving and logical explanation of a beautiful existence? If the same level of evidence is equal in both choices why not chose to believe in the more attractive educated guess until you study the Big Bang enough to discover beyond a shadow of doubt that indeed God did create the universe and all that exists out of nothing?
FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 10th, 2011 at 9:50:54 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed


In other words, your argument is a two-headed coin.



I like two headed coins, why do you keep betting on tails! No you are right, its like a math problem with the right answer but I did not show my work.

1) Whatever begins to exist has a cause
2) The universe began to exist
3) The universe has a cause

Let us call this cause God who must have existence in itself and not dependent on another. Therefore God exists. I don't think you can argue with point (1) that is just a undeniable truth. Some like to imagine that the one exception is the universe and will argue point (2), but with the evidence of the Big Bang I think that is harder and harder to do so without writing your own science fiction novel. Alexander Vilenkin in his book about searching for other universes says, "It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning."

Once it is established that there is a cause of all that exists out of nothing then by taking a look at the creation and noticing the beauty, patterns, observable laws and order we can come to further conclusions about the nature of God and our special role in this creation.
MathExtremist
MathExtremist
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November 10th, 2011 at 10:04:14 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

If we are making educated guesses about why and how we are here than it is much more logical and obvious to believe in God. Maybe irresponsible is the wrong word, but how would you describe the choice to prefer a belief in nothingness, ultimate futility, and accidental unexplainable existence to a belief in meaningfulness, ultimate purpose, a loving and logical explanation of a beautiful existence? If the same level of evidence is equal in both choices why not chose to believe in the more attractive educated guess until you study the Big Bang enough to discover beyond a shadow of doubt that indeed God did create the universe and all that exists out of nothing?



Your choice of the word "prefer" says it all. Human preferences are not rational. Lots of people prefer to believe in the creation myth, even though there is hard evidence that the world is not merely 5772 years old. Likewise, lots of people prefer to believe in an omnipotent creator rather than a happenstance creation, not for any rational reason, but because it is their preference.

Personally, I do not find a belief in accidental unexplainable existence to be as abhorrent as you seem to. I think it would be quite elegant if we were here as a result of random chance, but I also know that most people have never actually considered the ramifications of that train of thought. What if we are the lucky ones? What if our universe is the equivalent of the 20-coin-flippers in the "Superinvestors of Graham and Doddsville":

Quote: Warren Buffett


I would like you to imagine a national coin-flipping contest. Let's assume we get 225 million Americans up tomorrow morning and we ask them all to wager a dollar. They go out in the morning at sunrise, and they all call the flip of a coin. If they call correctly, they win a dollar from those who called wrong. Each day the losers drop out, and on the subsequent day the stakes build as all previous winnings are put on the line. After ten flips on ten mornings, there will be approximately 220,000 people in the United States who have correctly called ten flips in a row. They each will have won a little over $1,000.

Now this group will probably start getting a little puffed up about this, human nature being what it is. They may try to be modest, but at cocktail parties they will occasionally admit to attractive members of the opposite sex what their technique is, and what marvelous insights they bring to the field of flipping.

Assuming that the winners are getting the appropriate rewards from the losers, in another ten days we will have 215 people who have successfully called their coin flips 20 times in a row and who, by this exercise, each have turned one dollar into a little over $1 million. $225 million would have been lost, $225 million would have been won.

By then, this group will really lose their heads. They will probably write books on "How I turned a Dollar into a Million in Twenty Days Working Thirty Seconds a Morning." Worse yet, they'll probably start jetting around the country attending seminars on efficient coin-flipping and tackling skeptical professors with, " If it can't be done, why are there 215 of us?"

By then some business school professor will probably be rude enough to bring up the fact that if 225 million orangutans had engaged in a similar exercise, the results would be much the same - 215 egotistical orangutans with 20 straight winning flips.

"In my own case, when it seemed to me after a long illness that death was close at hand, I found no little solace in playing constantly at dice." -- Girolamo Cardano, 1563
boymimbo
boymimbo
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November 10th, 2011 at 10:06:48 AM permalink
It's actually not more logical and obvious to believe in GOD at all. When we're three years old, we believe that everything is magic. Playing peekaboo with my six month old daughter and her actually believing that I've disappeared is magic is simple ignorance. Ignorance is not bliss.

We can pretty much chalk up everything from the big bang forward up to some kind of scientific explanation. There are plenty of mysteries remaining out there. Up until less than 500 years ago the accepted theory was that the sun was at the center of the universe. Eventually, there may or may not be a valid hypothesis to the big bang. Eventually, there might be a theory of everything that explains everything.

I can't and won't believe in God because of the wonderfulness and complexity of us and the universe around me. The only thing I have is blind faith. I don't have a VALID reason why I believe in God - i just do. But I don't look around the universe and say "look at the world that god made!!!" The existence of earth and our complex ecosystems, species and society is due to (I feel) some very dumb and amazing (yes, miraculous) luck. Some will attribute it to God's existence per Genesis.

I can't see how "God" is an educated guess. Quite the contrary.
----- You want the truth! You can't handle the truth!
FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 10th, 2011 at 10:18:09 AM permalink
Quote: boymimbo


I can't see how "God" is an educated guess. Quite the contrary.



God is not a guess it is an educated and logical conclusion.

I find your description of faith very intriguing. While you may not be the best apologist in the world, I'm glad your faith is strong. I doubt that you would truly have your faith for long if it really was blind. There is obviously something deep inside you that compels you to believe in God. This is the blessing of a strong conscience maybe or the blessing of strong examples of faith in your past, I don't know and you don't seem to know either, but do not downplay the validity of those unexplainable interior yankings on our heart that lead us to God.
boymimbo
boymimbo
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November 10th, 2011 at 10:51:25 AM permalink
Scientifically, there is no evidence for God.

My faith is explainable, but I'm not going to explain my faith to those who will just blow it apart.
----- You want the truth! You can't handle the truth!

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