A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
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26-09-2014, 12:11 AM (This post was last modified: 26-09-2014 12:18 AM by Dark Phoenix.)
A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
Consider the following as a message to the community as much as a message directly for Diddo97. I would like to invite comments from everybody, but especially Diddo97.

In the short time that Diddo97 has been with us here on TTA I have been frustrated with his poor forum behavior, concerned with his mental state, and annoyed with his incessantly repeated weak argument. Ever since the Refining Reason Debate between Matt Dillahunty and Sye Ted Bruggencate, he has been spamming the forum, parroting Sye's presuppositionalist apologetics. I am not impressed with the argument or Diddo97's poor deployment of it. In the interest of dispelling this nonsense I have included a summary of the argument as well as my own refutation below.

The Presuppositional Argument for God

The argument is presented as a challenge. The unbeliever is told to provide a justification for what are known as "properly basic beliefs" or "foundational beliefs". These include believing in our own existence, that of others, the reliability of our senses and cognitive functions, and the reliability of reason and logic. If the unbeliever attempts the challenge, yet fails to provide a justification free of circular reasoning, the presuppositionalist points out that the best justification is the belief that god exists and is the foundation and justification for the foundational beliefs. If the unbeliever is unable to point out any flaws in this, he is now trapped, since to argue against the proposition with logic or reasoning will be considered circular by the presuppositionalist.

The next portion of the argument is presented on the shoulders of the challenge. The believer feels that they have adequately made unbelief impossible to defend, but they are left with an obscure god who's existence is only necessary to provide justification for foundational beliefs. They resolve this by claiming revelation from god, directly to them, which includes an identification as a specific god and the revelation that all other humans have received this message as well. If an unbeliever claims not to know if a god exists, the believer will simply say "You are a liar. You know god exists".

A common form of the argument begins by asking whether or not the unbeliever believes that there is such a thing as "absolute truth" or not. It doesn't matter if they answer yes or no, since the next question will ask them whether their answer is "absolutely true" or not. This word game will continue until either the unbeliever affirms a series of statements or exits the discussion. If you submit to being led by the tongue in this manner you will soon have agreed that "absolute truth" exists, that you know some things to be true, that logic exists, and that it is unchanging, not made of matter, and universal. At the point you are presented with something along the lines of:

"Truth, knowledge, and logic are necessary to prove ANYTHING and cannot be made sense of apart from God. Therefore... The Proof that God exists is that without Him you couldn't prove anything."

This argument can sometimes seem very compelling, especially as it is often presented with such aggressiveness or extreme confidence that to argue against it is to become vulnerable to insults and verbal bullying. Its proponents are often brutal and offensive in their dealings with unbelievers. Sye Ted Bruggencate is an excellent example.

Many people have commented that the argument isn't obviously flawed at first glance, but most people feel distinctly uncomfortable with it, as though they knew something wasn't quite right. The way the argument is used to force you into scripted question and answer periods, and its unclear and confusing nature are both red flags for a lot of people.

My Refutation

The argument is very flawed, even fatally so. It is beyond resuscitation.

The most efficient way of refuting the argument is to not be deceived by the initial challenge. The task of providing a justification for foundational beliefs is impossible without reasoning in a circle, or at all for that matter. The presuppositionalist cannot justify them either, and has already committed to them without asserting god at all. He has been dishonest by claiming god as the justification for reason, when the opposite is true. He is and always was forced to engage in reason, logic, to trust his own cognitive processes, etc... in order to reach the god hypothesis.

This is so easy to prove, it is laughable that it ever constituted an argument at all. Perform an experiment in your mind, if you doubt it. Strip away your foundational beliefs. Stop feeling, experiencing, and thinking. No one, including you, exists. There is no logic, no reason, and no universe.

Now what are you going to do?

You can't even think a thought, let alone reason out why god is "necessary". If you wanted to do that, you would have to assume the foundational beliefs again before you could even begin.

This is a DEATHBLOW to the argument. If those who deploy this argument were honest, and understood how hypocritical and uninspired their argument is, we wouldn't have any more presuppositionalists. That being the case, there are still other weaknesses to the latter parts of the argument which deserve at least an dishonorable mention.

1. The claim of personal divine revelation is flawed because of its ability to "prove" conflicting concepts. Take for example Islam and Christianity. They are not only opposed in their doctrines, but mutually exclusive in the very existence of their deities. Islam claims that Allah is the ONLY god. Christianity doesn't recognize the existence of Allah. Islam claims that Mohammad is Allah's prophet. Christianity doesn't consider Mohammad a prophet, but asserts that the son of god, Jesus Christ, died for all our sins. Islam considers Jesus to be merely a man and a teacher. If all of these propositions can be asserted as fact via divine revelation, then divine revelation cannot be reliable. To claim otherwise is to accept contradiction into one's world view.

2. The claim that all people "know" that god exists, and those who deny it are liars, is both flawed and deeply offensive. Having already demonstrated that divine revelation can be claimed to "prove" anything, even contradictory things, there is no justification for such a specific knowledge of the private thoughts and beliefs of others. It is an example of one of the most common dishonest argument methods, assertions repeated incessantly and with confidence, yet without evidence or logical justification. The presuppositionalist is most likely dishonest in this, knowing full well that claiming something often enough and loud enough can sometimes wear people down into thinking it might be true. Nothing could be further from truth.

This is an offensive and arrogant statement as well, since one lowly human being is claiming to possess the knowledge of his fellow's thoughts, even when they "lie". Such hubris deserves humiliation and ridicule. Even more so when the same lowly human being claims a direct line to the supernatural as well. Our toleration of such a person, especially in this community, should be zero.

3. "absolute truth" is a poorly fabricated misnomer. "Truth" as typically defined, is more than enough to convey what is meant by "absolute truth". True already denotes a finality, or what actually is, without reference to a subjective mind. If something is true, it doesn't matter if I agree with it or not. It doesn't require my agreement in order to be true. Most presuppositionalists won't define "absolute truth", and the few who do merely present the definition of "truth".

4. The argument is attempting to use universal facts about human nature against the unbeliever. A study of Epistemology will yield an understanding of our human limitations. The things we "know" are actually theories which fit the known facts, not true knowledge in the sense that the conclusions will never be overturned or refined. We don't "know" anything in a perfect sense, which seems to be something believers take issue with. The presuppositionalist may be right when he or she says that a perfect knowledge is impossible without a revelation from a supreme being. However, we are all in the same Epistemological boat, and that theory doesn't fit the known facts. It must therefore be dismissed.

If anyone feels that I have misrepresented these arguments, or refuted a straw man, feel free to present me with what you feel to be the actual argument. I will refute that as well, if I can.

Now that I have refuted these arguments in full, I am not interested in hearing Diddo97 assert anything without first accounting for the flaws I listed here. I ask the community to join me in insisting that he give an accounting of these flaws. If you read one of his spammed empty assertions, please send him the link for this post. Spam the link below every one of his posts if you have to, until he honestly provides an explanation for his arguments. I don't want him to feel welcome in spamming presupposition anywhere, because every time he tries someone will say "Dark Phoenix already refuted your bullshit. Here. (Insert link)"

Objections to Diddo97's Poor Behavior

That brings me to your behavior, Diddo97. You evade or ignore questions about your arguments and posts regularly. When you do give answers, they are never sincere, but are usually repetitions of what you have already said or asserted. There has been no such thing as a conversation or dialogue with you, since you are not respectful enough to engage and be sincere.

Does this look familiar?

[Image: 8Nx9Qco.png]

I know it does. This is your "go-to" response whenever you don't have an answer for someone. You just put this up and ignore whatever the question or statement was.

In case you decide to deny it, here are two threads where you did exactly that.

http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...th-Diddo97
http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...ist?page=2

When you are not evading or ignoring what others post, you are making the same statements over and over again, without evidence or logical justification. You often post the exact same words over and over, sometimes in many different threads.

In case you try to deny this as well, here is one excellent example.

http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...hool-essay

Claiming or saying "God is not for us to understand" and then merely repeating it when questioned about it, is a perfect example of how you are not engaged in open discussion, but are contributing a great deal of repetitive garbage to the forum.

When you are not making empty repeated assertions, you are openly contradicting yourself. In your thread "Matt Dillahunty vs Sye Ten Bruggencate" you openly contradict yourself several times. Your first few comments were in criticism of Sye, and revealed some of his argument's weaknesses.

"I don't see how Sye's appeal to solipsism implies God. Why does God solve this problem? If we can't know anything, we couldn't possible know if God is real or honest. Sye is hiding his naked assertions behind philosophical problems."

" 'truth is what corresponds with reality as percieved by God' He has yet to demonstrate that this has anything to do with his holy book..."

"Essentially, Sye's arguments are good untill he brings his religion into it. He still needs to demonstrate that the Bible is valid, even if his philosophical arguments have some merit. He also seems to be under the delusion that he is immune to his own arguments."

Suddenly, you start contradicting your own assessment. None of your previous objections have been explained by Sye in the debate, or anyone else for that matter, yet you still said:

"Ugh. Sye is completely pwning. His position is incredibly depressing, and he has just proven it. If a torturous, deceitful, obnoxious being existed, Sye fits the bill perfectly."

Of course your statement that "he has just proven it" didn't seem to matter when you went on to say:

"Matt: "Why did God leave the most important thing, the instructions for salvation, prone to error?"
Sye: "For reasons that are perfectly suitable for God"

Ugh. How are you not horribly depressed by this? Knowing that you're just a puppet of an omnipotent being who would happily torture you for all eternity? Nothing about this guy makes ANY sense to me."

"His argument is almost indistiguishable from pure brainwashing. He relies on not letting you think or ask any questions. Even in this debate, his entire argument was pretty much directed at the audience. He is a complete monster."


None of that sound familiar? Here's the proof.

http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...ruggencate

These are only a few examples, but anyone taking a look through your post and thread history can vouch that these examples are representative of your behavior and attitude as a whole. Although I can understand that your positions may be dynamic, it has not been possible to identify exactly what in presuppositionalism appeals to you and convinces you. You have not allowed for discussion of that kind to take place.

I do my best to follow some simple guidelines that help me promote discussion and an exchange of ideas. I have made simple significant changes to the ways in which I debate or discuss controversial topics, that I think helps to facilitate honest discussion and a better understanding for everyone. I invite you to consider ways in which you might evolve such systems of your own. Here are a few examples.

1. I try to answer questions, even if I just say "I don't know". I try to respond to each poster, if possible, to acknowledge them and engage in discussion.

2. When I answer questions, I do so honestly. I try not to evade a subject or line of discussion simply because it makes me uncomfortable.

3. When someone posts a criticism or objection to something I say or assert, I try to read and understand it. If I struggle with it, I ask questions to gain understanding.

4. When someone is arguing a point, especially in response to one of mine, I consider whether or not the refutation is successful and why I might think that. I ask them what convinces them, specifically, and they explain in detail. If I do not agree with them, I try to make it clear why that is by giving them detailed individual points to consider. In this way, we achieve an exchange of ideas, as opposed to merely preaching to each other.

5. Perhaps most importantly, I am open to the idea that I might change my position. I may even do so on a scale so large as to include my whole world view. I am skeptical, but can be convinced with good logical justification or good evidence.

Although these are probably not even close to a perfect system, they work well enough for me. I would really appreciate it if you would consider ways in which you can open up, be more sincere, and talk about the issues in a respectful and intellectually honest manner.

Concerns with Diddo97's Mental Health

I think that I speak for many of the posters here when I say that, based on many of your posts, I am genuinely concerned about your mental and physical well being. You have posted with such utter self loathing and hatred that I am have been shocked by it more than once. You treat yourself so poorly on this forum, that I am deeply concerned that you may be in need of legitimate psychiatric help.

I will just use some of the worst as examples. There are a lot of posts like this, but these really stood out to me.

"I am a dirty, arrogant, violent, mentally retarded monkey."

"I believe that I'm fat, lazy, unintelligent, and dirty."

"You don't want to be friends with me."

"I'm a fallible monkey."

"I have no friends. My intelligence is fading. My body is becoming huge, ugly, and hairy, preventing me from being around people. I'm am incapable of learning anything. I feel really old. I have not experienced peace since 2012. I am completely incompetent at anything.

And to top it off, I feel like it would be arrogant to not be this way. I know that's irrational, but I can't get rid of that feeling, because I feel like THAT would be arrogant. I'm trapped."

"I'm transgender. Yup, every single person on this forum hates me now. Why? Because they know that it means I'm mentally retarded. I don't know why everyone finds that funny, but they do. There is no cure for me. My life is over."

"Clearly someone has problems if they think that they need to mutilate their genitals to be happy. I don't see how it's any different from thinking I should really be a box, or thinking that I shouldn't have any arms. Mental retardation, by definition. It's arrogant to think that I could be a woman."


I have no ill will against you for being transgender. As far as I understand it, you are a victim of that condition, and are in no way guilty of anything negative. There is no decent person who would claim that you are.

I find your statements deeply disturbing. They convince me that you are in dire need of spending time with a mental health professional who can council and encourage you through your struggles, especially that of being transgender.

Your thread "The Last Straw" was the last straw for me. I am utterly convinced that you NEED help. I don't take threats of suicide lightly, and neither should you. The fact that you didn't post again for some time after this post had some of us convinced you had gone through with your threats.

"If you cannot refute Sye Ten Bruggencate, I will kill myself. There is no point in living if I know with 100% certainty that all humans are evil, filthy, disgusting animals."

I resent being put in the position of delivering a refutation, if only so that you won't end your own life, or otherwise harm yourself. I can hardly think of anything quite so selfish as that. I hit the pillow that night wondering if somewhere far away, you were lying with wrists slit open or hung from the rafters like a rag doll. I felt resentful in being used in such a way, yet compassionate, since I experienced similar suicidal impulses in combination with thoughts of self loathing as a teenager. I feel that I understand, if only in a small way, what you are going through.

You are manipulating me, and many of the people on this forum for any kind of attention you can get, and I don't appreciate it. I am willing to take the risk of playing into your sick games by posting this thread, if only to make you aware of how important it is for someone suffering from depression and suicidal thoughts to seek treatment.

I urge you to seek help. Tell your parents. Talk to someone who is family that you trust. Let them know that you are thinking these thoughts about suicide and saying these awful things about yourself. Let them help you. I urge you to do something about this in the real world. YOU NEED IT.

If nothing else, at least stay on the forum and try to learn about how you can be accepted and fulfilled by yourself and others without religion. At least here you can be free of condemnations of your nature, especially in sexual matters. I invite you to challenge your beliefs about yourself, your worth, and your nature. God isn't the only subject worth re-evaluating. You might find some serious relief if you adjust your decorum and engage with sincerity on the issues that matter to you.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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26-09-2014, 12:30 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
A well reasoned and thoroughly delightful post and while I no desire to undermine anything I feel obligated to point out that if you look at his post history it's very clear he's a a garden variety attention whore. He rotates through topics trying to get a rise out of people and this Sye thing is just the latest in a long line, which is why he makes EVERY conversation he joins about Sye and his stupid website. I genuinely believe he does not understand in the slightest the argument Sye makes or the reasons why it's wrong, I don't think he is smart enough for that. Maybe the former but definitely not the latter. However he knows it gets a rise out of people and that it takes zero wit or effort on his part. When a man argues about the existence of gods closet....

He's just a troll.

When valour preys on reason, it eats the sword it fights with.
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26-09-2014, 12:38 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
Hear, hear!
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26-09-2014, 12:51 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
Too long so I don't want to read, I skimmed through some parts and it all looks good to me. I wonder if he will respond? hmm..just have to wait and see.


My Youtube channel if anyone is interested.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEkRdbq...rLEz-0jEHQ
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26-09-2014, 01:03 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
(26-09-2014 12:30 AM)WhiskeyDebates Wrote:  A well reasoned and thoroughly delightful post and while I no desire to undermine anything I feel obligated to point out that if you look at his post history it's very clear he's a a garden variety attention whore. He rotates through topics trying to get a rise out of people and this Sye thing is just the latest in a long line, which is why he makes EVERY conversation he joins about Sye and his stupid website. I genuinely believe he does not understand in the slightest the argument Sye makes or the reasons why it's wrong, I don't think he is smart enough for that. Maybe the former but definitely not the latter. However he knows it gets a rise out of people and that it takes zero wit or effort on his part. When a man argues about the existence of gods closet....

He's just a troll.

I appreciate your comments on the post. Thank you for your compliments.

I agree that his post history is suspect, and contains many examples of negative attention seeking behavior. However, if Diddo97 is being honest about his age, he is only fifteen years old. It is my view that his behavior is consistent with that age, especially if the part about being transgender is also true. The normal difficulties associated with forming an identity in adolescence combined with a deep sexual struggle is no small trial to face, and goes a long way towards explaining the bouts of self hatred and self abuse in many of his threads.

I don't know if he understands Sye's argument, or is capable of understanding either it or any refutations. I suppose I just don't like the idea that he might not be. I want to give him every opportunity and encouragement to prove that possibility false. I want the discussion he hasn't yet been willing to have.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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26-09-2014, 01:07 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
(26-09-2014 12:51 AM)Shadow Fox Wrote:  Too long so I don't want to read, I skimmed through some parts and it all looks good to me. I wonder if he will respond? hmm..just have to wait and see.

Damn. I considered splitting it into multiple threads several times, since I know people don't like it when I write walls of text. I just didn't feel that the subject matter warranted two full blown threads.

I did my best to create spaces and short paragraphs organized according to each individual point. I tried to use bold font and color coding to help as well. I hope that helps a little for anyone who reads the whole thing.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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26-09-2014, 01:11 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
(26-09-2014 12:51 AM)Shadow Fox Wrote:  Too long so I don't want to read, I skimmed through some parts and it all looks good to me. I wonder if he will respond? hmm..just have to wait and see.

Read every word of it because after yesterday afternoon I was thinking about making a similar thread directed at diddo and his posting habits. Glad I didn't though because it wouldn't have been near as eloquent and challenging as what has been posted here by Dark Phoenix.

I struggle to express my thoughts in an intelligent, direct manner suitable for debate, so thank you Dark Phoenix. You have essentially said all that I would have hoped too myself but couldn't have.

Diddo97, the floor is yours.
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26-09-2014, 01:36 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
(26-09-2014 01:11 AM)Fodder_From_The_Truth Wrote:  Read every word of it because after yesterday afternoon I was thinking about making a similar thread directed at diddo and his posting habits. Glad I didn't though because it wouldn't have been near as eloquent and challenging as what has been posted here by Dark Phoenix.

I struggle to express my thoughts in an intelligent, direct manner suitable for debate, so thank you Dark Phoenix. You have essentially said all that I would have hoped too myself but couldn't have.

Diddo97, the floor is yours.

Glad to have you as a reader. Glad to provide the forum with what at least the two of us deemed necessary. Thank you for your compliments. You are very kind.

I struggle to express my thoughts too. This thread took me several days of thinking about how I wanted to present my challenge. I suppose that's the nice thing about the forum Vs. holding a live conversation with someone. Here you have time to organize your thoughts in a manner that would be impossible on the fly.

I sincerely hope Diddo97 takes the floor. I don't think I can devise a more direct means of drawing his attention.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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26-09-2014, 01:43 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
(26-09-2014 01:07 AM)Dark Phoenix Wrote:  
(26-09-2014 12:51 AM)Shadow Fox Wrote:  Too long so I don't want to read, I skimmed through some parts and it all looks good to me. I wonder if he will respond? hmm..just have to wait and see.

Damn. I considered splitting it into multiple threads several times, since I know people don't like it when I write walls of text. I just didn't feel that the subject matter warranted two full blown threads.

I did my best to create spaces and short paragraphs organized according to each individual point. I tried to use bold font and color coding to help as well. I hope that helps a little for anyone who reads the whole thing.

oh no its not that, Its just that I am not a reader. If its more then a 5 sentence paragraph I don't have the attention span to read it all lol.


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https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEkRdbq...rLEz-0jEHQ
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26-09-2014, 01:47 AM
RE: A Message and Refutation for Diddo97
(26-09-2014 12:30 AM)WhiskeyDebates Wrote:  A well reasoned and thoroughly delightful post and while I no desire to undermine anything I feel obligated to point out that if you look at his post history it's very clear he's a a garden variety attention whore. He rotates through topics trying to get a rise out of people and this Sye thing is just the latest in a long line, which is why he makes EVERY conversation he joins about Sye and his stupid website. I genuinely believe he does not understand in the slightest the argument Sye makes or the reasons why it's wrong, I don't think he is smart enough for that. Maybe the former but definitely not the latter. However he knows it gets a rise out of people and that it takes zero wit or effort on his part. When a man argues about the existence of gods closet....

He's just a troll.

Sadley he will neither read nor truly respond to this with anything but "nu'uh" because his stance is bullshit. He does not believe this crap he pointed out all the flaws in it before he realised how much of that precious precious attention this would get him. Case in point I don't think anyone has ever made a thread to talk about him before.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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