Apparently I am Deceived.
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15-12-2012, 09:39 PM
Apparently I am Deceived.
I had a discussion with my mother today on the topic of religion.

She said that the end of days is coming and blah blah blah.

She also said the Satan runs the world.

She is Jehovas witness so I really didn't know what to expect.

We were eating, and her beliefs made me lose my appetite. She said that the devil has deceived me because he works through people like atheists.

She said that science was created by god, but not evolution or the big bang. She dismissed that as foolish thinking.

I was also saying that there is no reason that the world can't be perfect if god does exist. And she said it was because of man's free will and mistakes that we have all of this evil.

In which I returned with my argument, if god creates everyone knowing what they will become, we don't have free will because he creates us knowing.

That means he would know that I would be typing this very sentence, so I in fact do not have free will, I might think I do, but since god can see what I will do next I do not.

It's kind of hard to explain without speaking.

This bothers me to no end. Sorry if I didn't type my best, I am mentally blocked because my mother thinks that the devil has guided me. My own mother.
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15-12-2012, 09:42 PM (This post was last modified: 15-12-2012 09:46 PM by Vosur.)
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
You should ask her to transfer all her money to your bank account. She shouldn't have a problem with that, considering that the world is going to end in a few days. Drinking Beverage

Jokes aside, the religious who deny the validity of the theory of evolution and the Big Bang theory have, as far as my experience goes, never done any research on the topic at all. They dismiss it out of hand because it contradicts what they believe in, not because they can provide valid and constructive criticism or because they are able to propose a scientific theory that possesses a better explanatory power.

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16-12-2012, 12:29 AM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
The reason you can't argue with such blind assertions is that, in a nutshell, they're simply blind assertions. There's no underlying logic to address.

I'm about to give you a couple of options and strategies. But first, I suggest considering long and hard about whether you want to employ them. This isn't just some streetcorner preacher with whom you have no relationship. This is your mom. You may have to think long and hard about what an argument might do to your relationship with her, and whether you want to risk that. If you don't want to risk it, your best bet would probably be either just swallowing your tongue (though that's difficult in so many ways), or calmly saying that this is not a topic that you think the two of you can discuss in a civil manner and asking that it be tabled. (She's pretty much called you the tool of Satan, which belief-in-Satan or not is pretty uncivil to my ear.)

If you do want a frank conversation with her, say that you're dubious about all the things she's said, but say you're willing to be convinced and ask her to convince you of her claims. She's listing bullet points. Ask her to back them up. And if she supports them with things that are themselves unsupported (eg, biblical passages) ask her to convince you that those are believable as well. Call her on circular reasoning, simply with a "but that doesn't work unless you already believe bleh, and if I already believed that I wouldn't need all this other stuff." Again, not that she's done something horrible in presenting a bad argument, but rather that you're seeking for convincing evidence and what she's given you isn't enough. Come at it from the standpoint of, "I'm willing to be convinced, if you can provide something convincing." Ask her how she knows, in the tone of someone looking for that certainty for yourself. The underlying question isn't what she knows, it's how she knows it and how you can know it. ALL of this puts the onus on her to justify her claims. By emphasizing that it's your desire for understanding and convincing that's in play here, rather than the validity of her own beliefs, you take some of the emotionally-heightened pressure off her. (That can turn into defensiveness very quickly, and once that happens any pretense of rationality goes bye-bye.)

Having gone through all of that, it may be that you're here not so much for advice (you'll get a lot, take it all with a grain of salt), but because you want to pull your hair and scream and want someone to sympathize as you do it. If so, all the advice in place of sympathy might be a bit irksome. Rest assured that most of us are offering advice BECAUSE we understand the frustration and betrayal you're feeling, and want to help you either cope with it or fight back. The advice IS our sympathy, or at least part of it.

"If I ignore the alternatives, the only option is God; I ignore them; therefore God." -- The Syllogism of Fail
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16-12-2012, 12:49 AM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
So I got directed here by another member, asking if I had any advice for you.

I thought at first that I didn't, but could say that I understand, and you're not the only one who has gone through this type of thing.

But I do have advice. And it's a pain in the ass to hear, but here it goes:

Stop. Discussing. Religion. With. Your. Witness. Family. If they're coming to you, use logical arguments as you see fit. But if you're going out to them, you will find out quickly that it's like beating a dead horse. No good comes out of it.

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16-12-2012, 11:32 AM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
If Satan runs the world as she claims, then it's likely all a deception and your mother is deceived too.

These family disagreements are very difficult and, when it involves a parent, it's even more difficult. I have a relative who I frequently get into religious discussions with. I have laid out my best arguments against the existence of the Christian god and yet this relative isn't swayed one bit. It occurs to me that there could be the original battle between God and Satan and God could have lost. Satan could have thrown God into hell and could be posing as God and lying to all of us in order to be worshiped. Frankly, with all the atrocities in the Bible, that fits reality somewhat better. But, if that was true, the religious could never figure that out because "God works in mysterious ways" and "our limited human minds can't understand his infinitely divine one" and "we can't know God's master plan", blah, blah, BLAH.... The brainwashing is very scary.

It's unlikely you can undo that brainwashing so your best bet is to find ways to live with it by minimizing the discussions as much as possible, agreeing on rules for polite discussion (if your mother is also willing of course), etc. When you do have polite discussions, don't let your mother get away with anything. For example, when she dismisses evolution, call her on the carpet about it by pointing out that she hasn't read a single book about evolution and has dismissed it without any understanding of what it really is.

"Religion has caused more misery to all of mankind in every stage of human history than any other single idea." --Madalyn Murray O'Hair
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16-12-2012, 11:52 AM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
(15-12-2012 09:39 PM)UndercoverAtheist Wrote:  I had a discussion with my mother today on the topic of religion.

She said that the end of days is coming and blah blah blah.

She also said the Satan runs the world.

She is Jehovas witness so I really didn't know what to expect.

We were eating, and her beliefs made me lose my appetite. She said that the devil has deceived me because he works through people like atheists.

She said that science was created by god, but not evolution or the big bang. She dismissed that as foolish thinking.

I was also saying that there is no reason that the world can't be perfect if god does exist. And she said it was because of man's free will and mistakes that we have all of this evil.

In which I returned with my argument, if god creates everyone knowing what they will become, we don't have free will because he creates us knowing.

That means he would know that I would be typing this very sentence, so I in fact do not have free will, I might think I do, but since god can see what I will do next I do not.

It's kind of hard to explain without speaking.

This bothers me to no end. Sorry if I didn't type my best, I am mentally blocked because my mother thinks that the devil has guided me. My own mother.


The good news is that you won't have to have this conversation ever again after the 21st. Just looking them pitifully in the eye and reminding them of this 'Apocalypse episode' should obviate any discussions.
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16-12-2012, 01:44 PM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
Simply ask her how a perfect God can create a perfect system which is capable of being corrupted. If it is capable of being corrupted, then it was never truly perfect at all.

My mother is also a Witness, and she simply didn't know what to say when I asked her.

Through profound pain comes profound knowledge.
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16-12-2012, 03:17 PM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
(16-12-2012 01:44 PM)Misanthropik Wrote:  Simply ask her how a perfect God can create a perfect system which is capable of being corrupted. If it is capable of being corrupted, then it was never truly perfect at all.


Thus God is not perfect, not omnipotent, not omniscient, not omnipresent.
Actually not much of a god...
Thus God is pathetic, really. Laughat
That would almost be funny if He (?) weren't such a cruel sadist.
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16-12-2012, 09:36 PM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
(16-12-2012 01:44 PM)Misanthropik Wrote:  Simply ask her how a perfect God can create a perfect system which is capable of being corrupted. If it is capable of being corrupted, then it was never truly perfect at all.

My mother is also a Witness, and she simply didn't know what to say when I asked her.
Simple. He never created it perfect. No where does it say that in the Bible. Everything is "good' and has a purpose.

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16-12-2012, 10:09 PM
RE: Apparently I am Deceived.
(16-12-2012 09:36 PM)kingschosen Wrote:  
(16-12-2012 01:44 PM)Misanthropik Wrote:  Simply ask her how a perfect God can create a perfect system which is capable of being corrupted. If it is capable of being corrupted, then it was never truly perfect at all.

My mother is also a Witness, and she simply didn't know what to say when I asked her.

Simple. He never created it perfect. No where does it say that in the Bible. Everything is "good' and has a purpose.



So just why would this perfect god allow imperfection? Why not create everyone like himself, just perfect? We wouldn't have to put up with his whinging that things aren't perfect if he'd made us like him in the first place.

God must have been bored, which means he ain't perfect. If he ain't perfect, he ain't a god.

So god don't exist.

Wow!

Sometimes I feel almost as clever as HOC!
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