Atheism is the only rational position to take
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10-09-2017, 12:05 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(10-09-2017 11:02 AM)Robvalue Wrote:  To continue an earlier thought:

I used the analogy that we're only ever looking at a shadow of reality, and can never look directly at it. A big part of science is about predicting how that shadow will behave in the future. We can do this very successfully, without having to know anything about the thing that is making the shadow.

The problem is, until science uncovers the source of the shadow we are always going to be stuck with people trying to explain what caused the shadow, science can chip away at parts of their explanation but unfortunately the big question still remains unsolved. Put a god who loves you and an empty promise into the mix and that's that for the foreseeable future.

Get your own bleeding hymn book
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10-09-2017, 01:44 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(10-09-2017 11:02 AM)Robvalue Wrote:  To continue an earlier thought:

I used the analogy that we're only ever looking at a shadow of reality, and can never look directly at it. A big part of science is about predicting how that shadow will behave in the future. We can do this very successfully, without having to know anything about the thing that is making the shadow.

That's right. But we can't help keep looking. I don't think we will ever be able to fully understand it, but I think I might be able to more directly experience it, in fact, I know I can more directly experience it.

"If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, Infinite. For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things thro' narrow chinks of his cavern.” - Blake

Also, Campbell, "God is a metaphor for that which transcends all levels of intellectual thought. It's as simple as that."

#sigh
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10-09-2017, 06:00 PM (This post was last modified: 10-09-2017 06:12 PM by mordant.)
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(10-09-2017 01:44 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  Also, Campbell, "God is a metaphor for that which transcends all levels of intellectual thought. It's as simple as that."
On another forum I had the misfortune of attempting a sane discussion with a self-confessed sociopathic pagan who held this particular quote as his personal favorite. The problem is that he either completely misunderstood or completely misrepresented what Campbell is saying here. He insisted that this statement proved the existence of god, since god is nothing more than a transcendent metaphor. He was another one of these people who redefines something that we know exists but which we have perfectly serviceable words for, as god -- and then says, see, god exists. This might be a transcendent metaphor for "the Divine", the universe, existence, eternity, nature, or in principle I suppose one's favorite car (or Miss Paltrow).

At any rate ... I digress, so to your point: I don't see it as a problem that we "see through a glass, darkly" -- to borrow a scriptural metaphor. So we don't really see bare-metal reality clearly. I think we see it clearly enough for practical purposes. The danger of straining too hard to try to see more clearly than we are able as (1) finite humans who (2) are trapped within the closed system of our reality and therefore lack the necessary perspective to fully contextualize our experiences, is this: like the interlocutor I describe above, we seem very prone, sooner or later, to start claiming to know more than we do or even can know. It's okay not to fully understand everything all the time. And it's MORE than okay to admit that we don't fully understand.
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10-09-2017, 06:04 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(10-09-2017 06:00 PM)mordant Wrote:  It's okay not to fully understand everything all the time.

Indeed.

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10-09-2017, 06:55 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(10-09-2017 06:04 PM)Banjo Wrote:  
(10-09-2017 06:00 PM)mordant Wrote:  It's okay not to fully understand everything all the time.

Indeed.

> If we understood everything there would be no pleasure in seeking out new knowledge. I hope my education continues to my final days. Consider
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16-09-2017, 04:09 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(07-09-2017 07:15 AM)kemo boy Wrote:  There is no "atheist worldview". And the christian god provides grounds for intelligibility? Please. Nothing about christianity enables you to understand anything, except maybe the minds of its followers. It has no foundation in reality.

When I say "the atheist worldview" that refers to all atheist worldviews. Without the Christian God, all worldviews fall short. But on what basis do you claim Christianity has no foundation in reality? How are you able to predicate given Christian theism is false?

"I think part of the appeal of mathematical logic is that the formulas look mysterious - you write backward Es!" - Hilary Putnam
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16-09-2017, 04:12 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(16-09-2017 04:09 PM)Naielis Wrote:  Without the Christian God, all worldviews fall short. But on what basis do you claim Christianity has no foundation in reality? How are you able to predicate given Christian theism is false?

Troll level officially reached. This, or even stupider than I previously imagined. Either way - pathetic.

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16-09-2017, 04:23 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(07-09-2017 10:41 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Concepts like logic or math work by definition. All they are is shorthand ways for us to communicate and understand basic phenomenon which can be repeatably observed. Pretending like logic is some type of magical force which points to the existence of something higher is both missing the point and baseless.

Math and logic are apparent to us a priori, but I'm a bit unclear as to how math or logic could be true by definition. If one is to say that the statement 5+6=11 is true by definition, that would necessarily imply that what is meant by "11" is contained in the summation of the concepts of "5" and "6". But this is clearly not the case.

Quote:To turn the table: what specifically from the Christian worldview explains and accounts for logic or inductive reasoning?

On the Christian perspective, induction is possible because God has made nature uniform such that we can reason from particulars to general laws.

Quote:What about this requires the Christian god (or any god)?

To be completely honest, I haven't heard a good argument for the necessity of the Christian God in relation to the problem of induction. But I still think TAG succeeds in showing that no other worldview can account for all of the preconditions of intelligibility. That is to say that the history of philosophy is the history of countless failures to answer the fundamental problems.

Quote:[*]if you use logic to make your point, you're using circular reasoning (logic to prove god, god to prove logic).

I actually don't see an issue with epistemic circularity at one's foundation. In fact, I think it's inescapable. But, in this case, I don't believe I'm appealing to any such circularity. I think logic is apparent to all of us. But it's important to understand what kind of world logic would exist in. What are the laws of logic, ontologically speaking, in your worldview? And, if that ontology is coherent, can it be consistent with your other core beliefs?

Quote:[*]if you just point to scripture, you're making a baseless claim.

Well I don't think appealing to what I believe to be the revelation of God would be baseless. But I certainly don't think it would be convincing to an unbeliever.

Quote:I seriously don't see what makes this worldview so special that it isn't either self-defeating or just dismissed on basis of no evidence.

What makes Christianity so special is that it is the only worldview that can account for intelligible experience.

"I think part of the appeal of mathematical logic is that the formulas look mysterious - you write backward Es!" - Hilary Putnam
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16-09-2017, 04:23 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(16-09-2017 04:12 PM)Vera Wrote:  
(16-09-2017 04:09 PM)Naielis Wrote:  Without the Christian God, all worldviews fall short. But on what basis do you claim Christianity has no foundation in reality? How are you able to predicate given Christian theism is false?

Troll level officially reached. This, or even stupider than I previously imagined. Either way - pathetic.

Well I'm sorry you think I'm a troll. What exactly do you think is stupid?

"I think part of the appeal of mathematical logic is that the formulas look mysterious - you write backward Es!" - Hilary Putnam
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16-09-2017, 04:26 PM
RE: Atheism is the only rational position to take
(07-09-2017 12:44 PM)Cheerful Charlie Wrote:  Again, Rene Descartes declared that God created the logic of the Universe and that God could have created that in any way he chose, the laws of nature and metaphysics are contingent, not necessary. But the Descartes, who was as orthodox a Catholic as they come also accepts the claim God is supremely good. But if so, God could have used his great power to eliminate moral evil. Giving us a God-like good nature and a God-like free will so we always, like God, freely choose to do nothing morally evil.

This idea God creates the very logic and metaphysics of the world turns out to be, when taken to its logical conclusion, incoherent and contradictory when taking God's other supposed attributes into account.

So the very idea God creates the logic and metaphysics of the world means logic and metaphysics and God are not a good fit with each other. Logic and metaphysics are a big problem for God.

What about God is inconsistent with allowing evil? The laws of logic are necessary, but the laws of nature are contingent. I don't see why this is a problem either. Could you elaborate more?

"I think part of the appeal of mathematical logic is that the formulas look mysterious - you write backward Es!" - Hilary Putnam
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