Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
01-12-2013, 03:08 PM
Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
“I don’t know what caused the Big Bang and I don’t know why there is something instead of nothing and that means you don’t know either” – Bill Maher. “I prefer Rationalism over Atheism because the question of God is unknowable. As a Rationalist you don’t have to waste your time either attacking or defending either position” – Issac Asimov. “You should be skeptical of everything, including yourself” – Bertrand Russell. I had to preface this article with the above quotes because, although I am a Buddhist and believe in a Supreme Being, I am a great admirer of the above people. My two B.A.’s are not in Philosophy or Physics, so feel free to tell me that I don’t know what I’m talking about. You may be right.
But I would like to open a discourse with my Atheist friends who have a Philosophy that I also admire. That philosophy is: ‘Your Heart should not accept what your Mind rejects’. One of the tenants of Buddhism is that you should not accept anything without thinking. But, I do have a rebuttal for at least two of the statements by some well known, highly intelligent, Atheists:

“If God did not require being created, logic dictates that the Universe did not require being created either” – Michael Shermer. My rebuttal is that the Universe is composed of Matter, Energy, Gravity, Time and Space; all of which require being created. Consciousness however is still a mystery. In fact, if you’re a follower of the Niels Bohr Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics, it is Consciousness that creates Matter. A Supreme Consciousness may very well indeed not have required being created. To those whose explanation of Consciousness is that the Human Brain is so complex that Consciousness ‘somehow’ evolved; you should know that using the word ‘somehow’ poses a lot of philosophical problems and questions. For example, Immanuel Kant in ‘The Critique Of Pure Reason’ surmised that Space and Time are only the relationship of one object to another; but, if we did not have the concept of Space and Time ‘A Priori’ in our Minds before we were born, we would not have been able to relate one sense impression to another. There would be no Awareness or Consciousness.

“Quantum Mechanics allows for a Universe to come into existence out of Nothing” – Lawrence Krauss. I have several rebuttals for this. First, Quantum Mechanics has become all things to all people. Physicist Fred Alan Wolfe in ‘The Spiritual Universe’ claims that Quantum Physics proves the existence of the Human Soul. John Wheeler believes that the strange results in QP experiments suggest that someone is observing the Universe. Secondly, when Dr. Krauss (if I understand him correctly) talks of something coming from nothing – He is talking about Gravity affecting Negative Energy is such a way that virtual particles ‘pop’ into existence which then become real particles. The problem with this, as even physicists who are atheists have pointed out, is that this occurs in Space and in Time within the Universe. The Big Bang occurred in a no-when, no-place, no-gravity. Krauss’s reply is that a true Nothing (no space, no time, no gravity) is unstable. And like all unstable systems, it will eventually collapse in on itself and produce something. I’m not sure how to answer that. In a no-time, how does nothing ‘eventually’ collapse. It should be noted that by the year 2017, there may be satellites in place (according to the Science Channel – ‘How The Universe Works’) that might be able to detect Gravity Waves from a Universe that existed before the Big Bang. One theory is that a part of 2 separate Universes (each as a wave-like membrane) in a Multi-verse, collided, causing the Big Bang. If these Gravity Waves from a previous Universe are detected, that would obliterate Stephen Hawkings and Lawrence Krauss’s assertion that the Big Bang came from nothing. Of course, that still leaves the question: ‘What caused the first Big Bang ?’. And if the continuous Big Bangs go back in Infinite Regression – the question is: ‘Why is there something instead of nothing ?’

When I talk with some of my Atheist friends, who I highly regard, I always assert that both positions on the existence of God require a Leap of Faith. Whenever I state that I always get what I call ‘The tooth-fairy’ rebuttal. My friends will state that they cannot prove or disprove the existence of the tooth fairy. However, they are still not going to believe in the existence of the tooth fairy until there is substantive scientific evidence. My answer to that is: If you want to stay up all night outside your kid’s bedroom after one of them loses a tooth; and the tooth fairy never shows up – you can reasonably assert that there is no tooth fairy. What you can’t do is to go back in Time to the Big Bang and from a position outside the Universe observe the Big Bang and then state: ‘I was there at the Big Bang and I can tell you that there was no Supreme Consciousness. The whole thing was a product of Spontaneous Creation’. Since you can’t do that, comparing the question of God with the question of the tooth fairy or the spaghetti monster, or whatever, is quite disingenuous. This is why Issac Asimov preferred Rationalism over Atheism and why Buddhists, although they believe in God, assert that the Nature of God is unknowable.

The bottom line is that if you are an Atheist and you state that you don’t belive in God; that is absolutely and perfectly fine. However, if you state, as a matter of fact, that there is no God, you are taking a Leap of Faith and crossing over into the world of Religious Dogma. If you state that a God-belief is stupid, you are a religious fanatic.

If the Question of God or the Nature of God is unknowable, then why do I believe in God ? Well, for me, God is not something I believe in, God is a Supreme Being that my Consciousness is aware of. Of course, what I think I am aware of is not Scientific Proof. So, as a Rationalist, I am willing to place this ‘Awareness’ down as a Belief and put it down in the category of Faith.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-12-2013, 03:13 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
meh...

Going with my gut and just going to say...

Shoo Fly!


God is a concept by which we measure our pain -- John Lennon

Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 5 users Like Momsurroundedbyboys's post
01-12-2013, 03:15 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
(01-12-2013 03:13 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  meh...

Going with my gut and just going to say...

Shoo Fly!

PHP Code:
[code][/code][code][/code
Quote:
Code:
[quote]
[/quote]
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-12-2013, 03:19 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  The bottom line is that if you are an Atheist and you state that you don’t belive in God; that is absolutely and perfectly fine. However, if you state, as a matter of fact, that there is no God, you are taking a Leap of Faith and crossing over into the world of Religious Dogma. If you state that a God-belief is stupid, you are a religious fanatic.
Please tell me which God belief is not stupid ?

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes morondog's post
01-12-2013, 04:01 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  However, if you state, as a matter of fact, that there is no God, you are taking a Leap of Faith and crossing over into the world of Religious Dogma.
Do you think you're the first person to make this observation or do you simply like to point out the obvious? Consider

[Image: 7oDSbD4.gif]
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Vosur's post
01-12-2013, 04:46 PM (This post was last modified: 01-12-2013 06:04 PM by IndianAtheist.)
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
"Atheism is a Religion" I'm going to stop you RIGHT THERE !

[Image: atheism-bald.jpg]
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes IndianAtheist's post
01-12-2013, 05:10 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  My two B.A.’s are not in Philosophy or Physics, so feel free to tell me that I don’t know what I’m talking about. You may be right.

You are indeed correct. You don't know what you're talking about.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein
Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 9 users Like Bucky Ball's post
01-12-2013, 05:14 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  If the Question of God or the Nature of God is unknowable, then why do I believe in God ? Well, for me, God is not something I believe in, God is a Supreme Being that my Consciousness is aware of.

And to you I would declare that love is void and you would question me, sir, what is your nothing? And I would answer you



































whitespace.

[Image: klingon_zps7e68578a.jpg]
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 4 users Like houseofcantor's post
01-12-2013, 05:38 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  “If God did not require being created, logic dictates that the Universe did not require being created either” – Michael Shermer. My rebuttal is that the Universe is composed of Matter, Energy, Gravity, Time and Space; all of which require being created.

Citation needed.

No, seriously. You can't just say that.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  Consciousness however is still a mystery. In fact, if you’re a follower of the Niels Bohr Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics, it is Consciousness that creates Matter.

... not even a little bit. At all.
(why the Bizarre capitalisation of certain Words?)

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  A Supreme Consciousness may very well indeed not have required being created. To those whose explanation of Consciousness is that the Human Brain is so complex that Consciousness ‘somehow’ evolved; you should know that using the word ‘somehow’ poses a lot of philosophical problems and questions.

And saying you do know is supposed to present fewer problems, apparently?

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  For example, Immanuel Kant in ‘The Critique Of Pure Reason’ surmised that Space and Time are only the relationship of one object to another; but, if we did not have the concept of Space and Time ‘A Priori’ in our Minds before we were born, we would not have been able to relate one sense impression to another. There would be no Awareness or Consciousness.

Citation needed.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  “Quantum Mechanics allows for a Universe to come into existence out of Nothing” – Lawrence Krauss. I have several rebuttals for this. First, Quantum Mechanics has become all things to all people.

That's not a rebuttal.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  Physicist Fred Alan Wolfe in ‘The Spiritual Universe’ claims that Quantum Physics proves the existence of the Human Soul. John Wheeler believes that the strange results in QP experiments suggest that someone is observing the Universe.

And those aren't consensus views. If they have greater explicative and predictive validity and utility they will trend so. I'm not holding my breath.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  Secondly, when Dr. Krauss (if I understand him correctly) talks of something coming from nothing – He is talking about Gravity affecting Negative Energy is such a way that virtual particles ‘pop’ into existence which then become real particles.

Virtual particles are a real, demonstrable thing. Quantum field theories are the present theoretical frameworks which account for such observation. Gravity has nothing to do with it...

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  The problem with this, as even physicists who are atheists have pointed out, is that this occurs in Space and in Time within the Universe. The Big Bang occurred in a no-when, no-place, no-gravity.

Yes.

The point being that "nothing" can lead to "something" (poorly defined though those terms are) in ways which we can understand and observe.

Therefore - this being the induction - we suppose similar behaviour may be possible in generalised circumstances.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  Krauss’s reply is that a true Nothing (no space, no time, no gravity) is unstable. And like all unstable systems, it will eventually collapse in on itself and produce something. I’m not sure how to answer that. In a no-time, how does nothing ‘eventually’ collapse. It should be noted that by the year 2017, there may be satellites in place (according to the Science Channel – ‘How The Universe Works’) that might be able to detect Gravity Waves from a Universe that existed before the Big Bang. One theory is that a part of 2 separate Universes (each as a wave-like membrane) in a Multi-verse, collided, causing the Big Bang. If these Gravity Waves from a previous Universe are detected, that would obliterate Stephen Hawkings and Lawrence Krauss’s assertion that the Big Bang came from nothing. Of course, that still leaves the question: ‘What caused the first Big Bang ?’. And if the continuous Big Bangs go back in Infinite Regression – the question is: ‘Why is there something instead of nothing ?’

Then you have a very simple answer: because it's possible for there to be something.

You may also note that at any point you instead wish to answer "God" instead of "don't know", you are failing very hard at making any sort of explanation whatsoever.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  When I talk with some of my Atheist friends, who I highly regard, I always assert that both positions on the existence of God require a Leap of Faith. Whenever I state that I always get what I call ‘The tooth-fairy’ rebuttal. My friends will state that they cannot prove or disprove the existence of the tooth fairy. However, they are still not going to believe in the existence of the tooth fairy until there is substantive scientific evidence.

Yes. This makes them sane.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  My answer to that is: If you want to stay up all night outside your kid’s bedroom after one of them loses a tooth; and the tooth fairy never shows up – you can reasonably assert that there is no tooth fairy. What you can’t do is to go back in Time to the Big Bang and from a position outside the Universe observe the Big Bang and then state: ‘I was there at the Big Bang and I can tell you that there was no Supreme Consciousness. The whole thing was a product of Spontaneous Creation’. Since you can’t do that, comparing the question of God with the question of the tooth fairy or the spaghetti monster, or whatever, is quite disingenuous. This is why Issac Asimov preferred Rationalism over Atheism and why Buddhists, although they believe in God, assert that the Nature of God is unknowable.

...

Problem is, that's stupid.

If you are positing an undefined Supreme Consciousness that is, indeed, unknowable then that's as useful as used diapers in a cook-off, so far as providing explanation and prediction go.

Notwithstanding that Buddhists explicitly do claim knowledge of how the universe behaves in a supernatural manner.

To ascribe any specific qualities to your putative "unknowable Supreme Consciousness" is to make tragically unwarranted claims of special knowledge based on nothing whatsoever.
(I mean, it's a nice trick to try to make positive claims, then attack those denying them as requiring "special knowledge", when you yourself have done the impossible and created something from nothing to state them in the first place...)

An Atheist who says, "God does not exist", is relying on definitions of God which have already been made by other people. It is a rejection of specific claims. This eludes you.

What is not meant is, "Something indescribable which may or may not ever be knowable or even itself exist doesn't exist". Because that's also stupid.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  The bottom line is that if you are an Atheist and you state that you don’t belive in God; that is absolutely and perfectly fine. However, if you state, as a matter of fact, that there is no God, you are taking a Leap of Faith and crossing over into the world of Religious Dogma. If you state that a God-belief is stupid, you are a religious fanatic.

Discounting unsubstantiated unverifiable incoherent inconsistent positive claims as to specific existence of purportedly testable (though inerrantly failing) personal supernatural entities is rather the precise opposite of stupid or fanatic.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  If the Question of God or the Nature of God is unknowable, then why do I believe in God ?

Good freaking question.

(01-12-2013 03:08 PM)Buddhist Alternative Wrote:  Well, for me, God is not something I believe in, God is a Supreme Being that my Consciousness is aware of. Of course, what I think I am aware of is not Scientific Proof. So, as a Rationalist, I am willing to place this ‘Awareness’ down as a Belief and put it down in the category of Faith.

So why didn't you just say so in the first place, before misunderstanding a great many other people, and judging them on said misunderstanding?

... this is my signature!
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 11 users Like cjlr's post
01-12-2013, 07:35 PM
RE: Atheism is a Religion - but a very good one
You mistake a logical conclusion as a leap of faith. I think this starts from (1) you characterizing the nature of atheists' positions and (2) a misuse of the word faith in your post.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes devilsadvoc8's post
Post Reply
Forum Jump: