Battleground God
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05-08-2010, 08:12 PM
Battleground God
A seventeen-question quiz to see if your beliefs about God are rational. Check it out here.

My results (if you look in the address bar, you can even see what I answered to each question) can be found here.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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05-08-2010, 08:37 PM
RE: Battleground God
I ended up with the following: "You have been awarded the TPM medal of distinction! This is our second highest award for outstanding service on the intellectual battleground."

There was one question that kind of bothered me, though, as follows: "It is justifiable to base one's beliefs about the external world on a firm, inner conviction, regardless of the external evidence, or lack of it, for the truth or falsity of these convictions."

Justifiable to whom?

This gets a little to the point Ghost was dancing around in his initial post on this forum, but I have an issue with the concept of having to "justify" a position. I realize the question is going for an intellectual view point as opposed to a moral view point, but I still think the question is flawed in the sense that it presupposes any perspective requires a justification to an external audience. If I want to believe my cell phone works because there is a little man inside receiving message from invisible carrier pigeons who fly at the speed of light, then it's my prerogative to do so. There is no reason for me to justify it to anyone.

The issue becomes when justifications are required by an outside force. I'll illustrate it this way: I don't believe in a supernatural God because I a) see no evidence for his existence and b) most of the the things attributed to him can be explained by modern science. Therefore, I've concluded that God was a form of early science and has since been proven false. That is what I believe. I also believe, though, that this is my belief, not everyone's belief. I feel no need to knock on doors to proselytize to my neighbors in an attempt to convert them to my beliefs. Nor do I feel particularly threatened if someone does not agree with me.

Religion, however, does seem to feel threatened. It not only needs a justification but requires one of you, whether you are prepared to give one or not. Whether or not religion is the cause of all war, some war, or no war, ignores a point. The point is that religion is a useful tool in waging war because it provides a justification for all kinds of things, from motivating people to fight to committing acts of unspeakable horror. There are other things that can lead down this path and not all atrocities in the history of mankind of have been committed in the name of a God or a religion. But, an overwhelming number of them have been.

Anyway, I realize this is off topic, but I found that one question ... well, maybe not offensive, but certainly disturbing. To me at least. Perhaps I'm reading too much into it.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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06-08-2010, 07:35 AM
RE: Battleground God
Thanks for the link - I too got a medal of distinction. Only bit one bullet - on the question regarding whether a being we call God would be able to make a circle a square. I answered true, as God should be able to do anything, right?

But I guess since I consider God to be logically impossible, it's not that big of a deal to believe that a being called God could do logically impossible things.

Our brains deceive us on a regular basis, so we have to find ways to fight back.
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06-08-2010, 08:10 AM
RE: Battleground God
I got dinged on that one too, and had a very similar logic towards yours. In fact, I disagreed with the reason of why I got dinged on it because I do not think I was logically inconsistent.

Who do we appeal to?

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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06-08-2010, 04:45 PM
 
RE: Battleground God
"Congratulations!

You have been awarded the TPM medal of distinction! This is our second highest award for outstanding service on the intellectual battleground.

Bitten Bullet 1

You answered True to questions 6 and 13.

These answers generated the following response:

You stated earlier that evolutionary theory is essentially true. However, you have now claimed that it is foolish to believe in God without certain, irrevocable proof that she exists. The problem is that there is no certain proof that evolutionary theory is true - even though there is overwhelming evidence that it is true. So it seems that you require certain, irrevocable proof for God's existence, but accept evolutionary theory without certain proof. So You've got a choice: (a) Bite a bullet and claim that a higher standard of proof is required for belief in God than for belief in evolution. (b) Take a hit, conceding that there is a contradiction in your responses.

You chose to bite the bullet."

HuhHuhHuh
once i hit this i was confused and just answered the way i thought it wanted me to answer. how can there be overwhelming evidence of evolution and it not be true? i had to admit that i expect a higher standard in evidence of god then i do in evolution? any proof would be a good start. can someone explain what i'm missing here?
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06-08-2010, 05:06 PM (This post was last modified: 06-08-2010 05:27 PM by Ghost.)
RE: Battleground God
I bit three bullets, took no direct hits and wound up with the Service Medal. My breakdown is here.

I must admit, the way some of those questions were framed drove me a little nuts. I felt railroaded at times.

It's an interesting game. Any shortcomings it might have seem to be just the result of having to make choices to make it work. I probably shouldn't have done it tired. I think I answered some questions other than the way I wanted to. It says I said God exists. I put 'don't know', cause, y'know, I'm an Agnostic. Oh well.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
Hey, thegirl.

Quote:how can there be overwhelming evidence of evolution and it not be true? i had to admit that i expect a higher standard in evidence of god then i do in evolution? any proof would be a good start. can someone explain what i'm missing here?

I don't actually know why evolution hasn't been proven, but it hasn't. Just like E=MC2. But from what I understand it just means that it's pretty likely, but it's not a slam dunk. There's a chance it's not true. So scientists aren't comfortable saying it's a fact. But that's what scientific truth is all about. No matter what, don't say something is true cause you think it is, only say it's true if the hypothesis can be tested repeatedly and proven.

So by saying you believe in evolution you are stating that despite the fact that it has not been proven and is not true (by the scientific definition of true) you believe it; which amounts to an act of faith. But by saying you don't believe in God despite the fact that the non-existence of God has not been proven and is not true (by the scientific definition of true), you are demanding a higher standard because you believe in one thing without proof but not the other.

The question wasn't "does God exist", it was, "does God not exist". I mention that in reaction to your statement about 'any proof would be a good start'. The difficulty with the God question is that proving the existence or non-existence of an entity that can operate outside the rules of the natural universe is a scientific impossibility. Science is literally incapable of proving either hypothesis. So while evolution might some day be proven, the God question will never be resolved scientifically. So belief either way will eternally be a matter of faith.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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06-08-2010, 06:15 PM
RE: Battleground God
(06-08-2010 04:45 PM)thegirl Wrote:  how can there be overwhelming evidence of evolution and it not be true? i had to admit that i expect a higher standard in evidence of god then i do in evolution? any proof would be a good start. can someone explain what i'm missing here?

Well, first you said that it is acceptable to believe in evolution since that there is overwhelming evidence that it is true. Then you said that it is not acceptable to believe in God unless you have proof. The tension here is that overwhelming evidence does not equal proof. It's close to proof, but it isn't proof. I would count that as not biting the bullet, since I think you were just confused by the terms.
Oh. I just noticed that I hadn't given my results. I took no hits, bit no bullets, and got the Medal of Honour for getting through without a single slip-up.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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08-08-2010, 08:03 AM
 
RE: Battleground God
maybe it's just me, but evidence is proof. animals and insects adapting to environments is evolution. there's evidence of this making it true. no faith in a belief required when you see it before your very eyes. i felt railroaded when i got to the question that said, "Evolutionary theory maybe false in some matters of detail, but it is essentially true." i answered false because i don't agree that some matters might be false. if i answered true i thought i'd be agreeing that evolution isn't true. i don't think of evolution as something to believe in like a mystical all powerful sky daddy. it's fact, not belief.

"the fact that the non-existence of God has not been proven"
argh!!! i can't stand it when someone uses this as part of their support. god was never proven to not have existed, therefore he might. i guess the same goes for fairies and ogres and big foot. how exactly would one go about proving that something doesn't exist? it makes absolutely no sense which i'm guessing is the reason why it ends up being the last answer for so many debates.
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08-08-2010, 08:36 AM
RE: Battleground God
Hey, thegirl.

I feel you. But science says you're wrong on both counts. I mean, evolution is accepted. Scientists use it. Like E=MC2. Physicists don't not use it cause it's not proven. It's accepted. But accepting something doesn't mean it's proven. It just means it's accepted. It's an act of faith. Granted, it's an act of faith that's contextualised by a mountain of evidence, but an act of faith none the less. The same philosophy applies to God. You don't have to agree, but scientifically speaking, the no-God theory hasn't been proven and likely will never be.

It's like a murder trial. You can have heaps of circumstantial evidence that paints a pretty convincing picture. But unless you prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt, you can't convict someone. Like OJ Simpson. A lot of people are pretty convinced he did it, but he's innocent under the law.

So it's not just you. Tons of people feel the same way. Evolution is true. God doesn't exist. But when all is said and done, neither of those positions are scientifically true. They aren't fact.

For me it's not an issue. There's room in my worldview for metaphor and irrational belief. But if someone wants to say that the only things that are true are things that are proven by science, neither assertion is true. The questionnaire just asked for consistency.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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08-08-2010, 09:19 AM
 
RE: Battleground God
check out this little blurb: http://www.neatorama.com/2008/11/22/more...ove-e-mc2/

of course the no god theory will never be proven. just like the no big foot theory will never be proven. it's a cop out of an excuse. proving something doesn't exist is impossible. end of story.

i still fail to see how evidence is not proof. if you were given proof that aliens exist, would you then believe in aliens? my answer is no, because i would then know they exist.

biological evolution is fact. mechanism of evolution is what is theorized. we know it exists, we just don't know how it works. but it's a fact that it exists.
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