Attack a Theist
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20-05-2013, 05:16 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
Here is a test for you Mojch.
Pick a religion that isn't yours and defend it with the same arguments that you use to defend your own religion, your own beliefs.

I'll even make one up for you to believe in.

100,000 years before the great civilizations were born, there was a being on earth who took the form of man but wasn't a man.
He sent out ghost like copies of himself to guide each and every person on the earth to a destiny they could be proud of.
Unfortunately each copy had a mind of it's own and wasn't under the direct control of the man who wasn't a man.
Some achieved greatness through evil deeds. Others completely ignored the ghost like beings and found their own destiny.
Over the years, this being has grown in power and influence, but his ghosts also grew and influenced mankind in ways that he had never thought possible. Each ghost when called home adds to his knowledge of the world. In this way, he has seen the movements of every living person on earth for the past 100,000 years.

He is a god and I believe with all my heart that he is real.

^ This is the foundation of belief, the foundation of faith. Believing in something without reason, without evidence.
Believing in a story because it sounds good. It's a heart warming tale that gives you that warm fuzzy feeling in your chest.
Or even because it makes you feel fear. A superstition that can cause you to shiver at the mere thought of it or bring you joy because it sets your mind at ease.

Believing that a ghost, of the man who isn't a man, guides my life takes away some of the responsibility when I do wrong and brings me joy when things go well because I know it has set me on a course of a great destiny.

In the end, it's all imaginary. It's wishful thinking at best and obscene at worst. We, as human beings, can cause atrocities while convinced we are doing GOOD work in the name of our perfect, loving and all knowing god. If we are doing god's will, then it must be good by definition because god is good.
(No matter how many people we have to maim and kill to do it)

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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20-05-2013, 05:17 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(20-05-2013 02:38 PM)Mojch Wrote:  First, let me apologize to kingschosen for blatantly ripping off his thread title.

Second, I am a theist looking for an in-depth attack on my beliefs from an atheist willing to take the time to explain his arguments and respond to my counter-arguments. I am not interested in converting anyone. Instead, I seek to affirm the foundations of my own beliefs by testing them against arguments that have persuaded others.

Significantly, and perhaps unrealistically, I am not looking for a traditional "free for all" discussion wherein I address responses to lots of different people. Instead, I hope for a civil discourse with a single individual willing to do the following...

1. Explain why they are an atheist.
2. Read my responses to the argument(s) from #1 in detail and respond respectfully.
3. Correct any errors in my reasoning so that I can discard beliefs and/or arguments which are likely invalid.

A little about me to inform the discussion should anyone decide to take me up on my offer.

1. I am 30 years old.
2. Education wise, I have three degrees. (BA, M.Ed, JD) I have a working grasp of most scientific concepts but am not a scientist by training.
3. I have been a theist for my entire life as a result of my upbringing.
4. My current exposure to atheist argumentation has been limited to in-depth readings of The God Delusion and The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins.

If the above sounds like it would be interesting to you, please respond and we can discuss. I will attempt to post replies at least once a day. Of course, should you raise a point that requires additional research or education on my part, it may take several days (or longer!) for me to do sufficient outside study to understand your position.

Sincerely,

Mojch

Why am I an atheist?
The evidence presented in support of a deity, any deity, has thus far in my review, been totally insufficient and inadmissible as evidence e.g. constant hearsay evidence and claims of personal experience being the most common "evidences", with the exception of forged or inaccurate data built in the favour of Creationism.
There is no reason for me to believe in a deity without evidence toward the "fact".

Now that is over, OP, I suggest that you go over the the Boxing Ring and make a thread towards a specific forum member (you can have a limit of two Boxing matches at a time). that way you wont have to deal with a mountain of responses, as nobody but the mod/admin acting as Ref are allowed to interrupt a Boxing Match.

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20-05-2013, 05:19 PM (This post was last modified: 20-05-2013 07:43 PM by Full Circle.)
RE: Attack a Theist
(20-05-2013 02:38 PM)Mojch Wrote:  First, let me apologize to kingschosen for blatantly ripping off his thread title.

Second, I am a theist looking for an in-depth attack on my beliefs from an atheist willing to take the time to explain his arguments and respond to my counter-arguments. I am not interested in converting anyone. Instead, I seek to affirm the foundations of my own beliefs by testing them against arguments that have persuaded others.

Significantly, and perhaps unrealistically, I am not looking for a traditional "free for all" discussion wherein I address responses to lots of different people. Instead, I hope for a civil discourse with a single individual willing to do the following...

1. Explain why they are an atheist.
2. Read my responses to the argument(s) from #1 in detail and respond respectfully.
3. Correct any errors in my reasoning so that I can discard beliefs and/or arguments which are likely invalid.

A little about me to inform the discussion should anyone decide to take me up on my offer.

1. I am 30 years old.
2. Education wise, I have three degrees. (BA, M.Ed, JD) I have a working grasp of most scientific concepts but am not a scientist by training.
3. I have been a theist for my entire life as a result of my upbringing.
4. My current exposure to atheist argumentation has been limited to in-depth readings of The God Delusion and The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins.

If the above sounds like it would be interesting to you, please respond and we can discuss. I will attempt to post replies at least once a day. Of course, should you raise a point that requires additional research or education on my part, it may take several days (or longer!) for me to do sufficient outside study to understand your position.

Sincerely,

Mojch

Mojch,

There is a thread on this forum called "The Boxing Ring" with specific rules. It is meant for just what you seem to be asking for, a one on one debate. Once the debate begins no one else may post. I would suggest that you and Mark agree to this and begin there.

BTW congratulations on being the first theist I have seen since arriving here that has posted a non-inflamatory, clear and concise OP. Clap Hope you turn out to be as open to discussion and debate as you say you are, you'll find that we respect sincerity and knowledge of topic; trolls and drivebys not so much.

Good luck and welcome.

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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20-05-2013, 05:28 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
Yes, this belongs in the boxing ring if it's a one on one.

Sounds like this will be a nice thread.

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20-05-2013, 06:02 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(20-05-2013 04:50 PM)Mojch Wrote:  Thanks to Rahn127 and Starcrash for their replies. Per my original post, I'm going to limit my discussion to them plus Mark. No disrespect is intended to anyone else but I need to limit myself in order to learn in depth.

Cjs, thanks for the book suggestion. I will check it out once I finish my current text. Is it mainstream published or an e-book?

I will draft replies to both Rhan127 and Starcrash ASAP.

Sincerely,

Mojch

Ok Mojch, you've stimulated some interest! What I like about your introduction is that you seem intelligent and open-minded.

I assume you are a Christian? My particular interest is the history of early Christianity and the bible, which, to my mind, is the basis of belief. I'm also very opinionated about the damage Christianity has and still does inflict on individuals and society at large. I have 3 degrees (in medicine) and have spent 7 years of my spare time studying the above topics. I can help you learn, and quite probably, I can learn from you.

You pick a topic...Jesus? Paul? James? Peter? The Old testament? churcdhes? sex?
depression? anxiety? homophobia? misogyny? prayer? sin? heaven? hell? priests? the Vatican? or anything else. I'll join in, so fire away.

Ps if you go to the boxing ring, I'll join you. Feel free to invite anyone else who you would like to join in.
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20-05-2013, 06:35 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
Clang!!

Godless in the Magnolia State
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20-05-2013, 07:35 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
To All (especially Full Circle),

Thank you for the kind reception so far. I have found it exceedingly difficult to have civil discussions about religious topics in the real world (and, I am sad to say, much of that is due to the low level of interest in serious discourse on my side) and thus I am excited to get involved here.

To Mark,

Thank you for the kind words. I can think of no compliment greater to an aspiring learner than "open minded". In that vein, I would enjoy taking this into "The Boxing Ring". With no offense intended to the other posters, I believe a more focused discussion will allow the depth of thought and expression such serious issues require. And, since you were the first to reply, it seems only fair that we work together first. I have created the appropriate post in "The Boxing Ring" and have also proposed an initial discussion. Apologies to Rahn127 and Starcrash for not engaging further at this time but, should I survive my discussion with Mark, I'd love to discuss further.

See you there!

Mojch
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20-05-2013, 09:17 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(20-05-2013 05:05 PM)JAH Wrote:  Starcrash, with out knowing the names of all I do know there is a precedent for gods rising from the dead. This is not a notion unique to christianity.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dying-and-rising_god

If anyone cares my mother's name and now my granddaughter's middle name are that of Baldr's wife.

The tradition of Baldr rising from the dead is generally considered to be the norse incorporating christian traditions for their own use.

It should also be pointed out that "life after death" is a common motif in many religions. Often slaves and retainers were killed to serve their masters in the afterlife. A fate almost as harsh as worshiping and serving some christian god for ever.
Something doesn't become true just because it's traditionally believed to be true. It isn't really relevant whether non-existent gods rose from the dead, because that wouldn't set a precedent for a real god rising from the dead (assuming a real god did rise from the dead). That's like coming to the conclusion that God must have a mother just because so many historical gods were said to have had mothers.

I enjoy the comparison to other religions as an interesting point about how such a myth might have arisen, but it doesn't make for a very compelling argument... just because an idea is cliche doesn't mean that it couldn't also be based on reality. I could have argued that various tribes have come up with religions as a primitive form of law & order before they are civilized enough for police to make sense, but that doesn't prove that all religions must have come about that way; that's merely an interesting note.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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20-05-2013, 09:21 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
(20-05-2013 07:35 PM)Mojch Wrote:  Apologies to Rahn127 and Starcrash for not engaging further at this time but, should I survive my discussion with Mark, I'd love to discuss further.

There's an option on this forum to look through a user's past posts... and I'd highly recommend it.

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20-05-2013, 09:32 PM
RE: Attack a Theist
Starcrash, my apologies, I only wanted to point out that resurrection was a not uncommon meme in religion. I never meant to suggest that if it existed before it must therefore be true.
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