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Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
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19-09-2016, 09:44 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(15-09-2016 09:31 PM)Aliza Wrote:  
(15-09-2016 09:07 PM)DLJ Wrote:  I've seen some Murikan journalism on YouTube so I know that's a non sequitur.

I believe Randy is Canadian. For the record.

Yes I am. Ontario. A bit north of Toronto.

One of the reasons I say I am known for being unbiased is because I created and hosted a local television show a few years ago called Beyond Belief where we would discuss the "big questions of life." I moderated the discussion between two opposing viewpoints - often university professors, sometimes religious and atheist. Viewers told me they could never tell what my real beliefs were by watching the show and to me that was a huge compliment.
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19-09-2016, 09:45 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(19-09-2016 09:22 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  "I cannot accept that people who don’t believe in G-d must have something defective in their brains."

I'm not saying that.

Yes you are:

(07-09-2016 10:12 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  3. Atheopaths lack a belief in God. They are "born that way." Their "agency detector" is broken.

Quote:The problem is that atheists have no foundation for saying what is right and what is wrong. Most do not believe in objective morality.

Neither do you, as you have repeatedly demonstrated.

---
Flesh and blood of a dead star, slain in the apocalypse of supernova, resurrected by four billion years of continuous autocatalytic reaction and crowned with the emergent property of sentience in the dream that the universe might one day understand itself.
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19-09-2016, 09:50 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(15-09-2016 11:26 PM)morondog Wrote:  Rugrat, if ever any of us wanted to tell our stories I'd say chances are 99 to 100% that we'd want to write them ourselves, rather than entrust them to a person of such dubious credentials as yourself. A schmuck who spends an entire thread avoiding direct questions and pushing a religious agenda, while appearing not to give any thought to the objections raised. Why the fuck would any of us having seen your performance, then expect you to do anything except distort and manipulate any account to fit with your bullshit?

I expected that reaction. And I understand it. Although if you look back at the thread, I always answer direct questions, have no religious agenda and often gave thought to the objections raised. (Not when they were were outright denial of facts, however.)

Regarding distortion and manipulation, I not only explained that you would have full right to approve the final version, I even gave you an example of a story I wrote on abortion - a position I vehemently oppose (for scientific reasons not religious ones) and yet showed no bias. Not sure what else I can do. You just have to have faith. Wink (And, by that, I mean the true definition of faith as trust or confidence based on evidence.)
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19-09-2016, 09:52 PM (This post was last modified: 19-09-2016 10:19 PM by Aliza.)
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(19-09-2016 08:29 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  
(15-09-2016 09:37 AM)Aliza Wrote:  About the Christian view of Satan, I’ll have to take your word for it. I’m not exactly in a position to speak with any authority on what Christianity believes. I will say, however, that when I’ve pointed out my perceived discrepancy in the past, I’ve never had anyone challenge it.

I’ve been taught that the story of Job is allegorical, but I’m sure there are some educated Jews who take it as literal. Honestly, I think its primary purpose is to explain to Christians how the Jewish view of Satan differs than the Christian view.

Regarding the Jewish view of creation, according to traditional Jewish teachings, Torah and science must equate. If the science is in and the Torah’s description of creation doesn’t match the science, then we must have misunderstood the Torah. Maimonides said that around 1,000 years ago.

Traditional Judaism teaches that the universe is +15,000,000 years old and expanded from the something the size of a mustard seed. It also teaches that Adam was the first man with a soul, but he was not the first man. There were 974 generations of man before Adam. The six days of creation are outside of the Jewish calendar, which records that we’re almost six thousand years from the life of Adam. It also teaches that the six days are really 15,000,000 years. (With that said, I have still met Jews who hold by a six day creation model, but I’m not aware of how they work their model into the above Jewish teachings.)

This article from the Huffington Post does a good job of summing the Jewish position up.

“These [1,000 – 2,0000 year old Jewish] sources depict an origin of the universe that is clearly, and uncannily, similar to that of modern cosmology and quite unlike the views of some “fundamentalist” religions out there. And when these sources have in the past conflicted with the cosmological thinking of the time, it is often the science that has evolved to an understanding closer to that of the religious.”

To our delight, modern science has shown that the universe is around 15,000,000 years old and that it expanded from a single, tiny point. We also learn that many humans lived prior to 6,000 years ago and the scientifically accepted order of “creation” matches the order accepted by Jews, as recorded 2,000 years ago in the Talmud.

Edit: I meant that the universe is 15 billion years old. Thanks, Grasshopper!

Very interesting, thanks. Do you have a source for the 15 billion year claim? (Or is that the link you provided?) I want confirm for myself that Jewish writings stated that thousands of years ago. It's cool that they came so close to the 13.8 billion claimed now. What do think of Gerald Schroeder (The Science of God) who was a Jew but because a Christian?

I'm going to assume that you mean to say that Gerald Schroeder became a Christian. No, he most certainly did not become a Christian. He is currently a teacher at Aish HaTorah in Jerusalem and a lecturer on Jewish topics. He is most definitely not a Christian. I've read Dr. Schroeder's books, and I've listened to his lectures. I'm familiar enough with his message, and it's most certainly not a Christian one. Dr. Schroeder discusses how the universe was created over a period of several billion years and also six days. I find his work fascinating.

Regarding the backup to what I said about a 15 billion year creation, I'm more than happy to provide you with what I can.

This Wikipedia page on Judaism and Evolution is a great starting point, and I've quoted it often on this forum.

In the link below, I've basically summed up that Wikipedia page with this post from March of this year.
http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...#pid962002

Take a peek at that, and then if you want more information, I'll see if I can find suitable English sources for you. Much of this stuff is written in Aramaic or Hebrew and isn't readily available online. It's stuff I learned in a class or through Jewish learning. At the very least, I might be able to find articles that other people wrote on the subject to validate what the sages said.

Just to clarify, my purpose on this forum is to say what Jews believe, as I understand it. Not to prove that it's right or wrong.
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19-09-2016, 09:56 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(15-09-2016 11:56 PM)Gloucester Wrote:  
Quote:With a background in journalism, I am known for being unbiased.
Randy, your "journalism" may possibly be unbiased but your authorship of books on matters of creation, evolution and belief are so biased, at least one is so full of misused out of context quotations, opinions presented as facts etc. that on this evidence I would be suspicious if you claimed 2+2=4.

I would suspect an ulterior motive for your use of the truth.

Nope. My evolution book was presented unbiasedly until I gave my conclusions at the end. Even the person who wrote the forward admitted that I gave the information unbiasedly and allowed the reader to make up his or her own mind.

By the way, I know no one has asked but I do not in any way support teaching creationism or intelligent design in public schools. In fact, I publicly advocate that more evolution be taught. I hate seeing teachers have to gloss over it because they are afraid of controversy. I know this happens more in the States than here in Canada. But I always ask kids in high school what they are learning about evolution and they tell me they hardly cover it. It's the foundation of biology for Pete's sake!
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19-09-2016, 09:57 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(19-09-2016 09:22 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  
(15-09-2016 08:07 PM)Aliza Wrote:  Yes.... speaking of twisting the truth. Dodgy

But anyway... I don’t agree that all people are born with an innate belief in G-d. This just goes against my own personal observation of the world around me, and you have not presented a compelling argument to change my mind. I don’t believe that you have the education needed to make an argument that will be effective at convincing anyone to take your position who wasn’t already aligned with your way of thinking. I suspect all you’re doing is repackaging existing information to sell to a market that already agrees with you. Whoopie do.

With that said, I do believe that some people may have a genetic link which may incline them to believe in a god, while others do not (note I said "I believe" and not "I know for sure"). I also suspect that link can potentially override one’s environmental exposure. A good way to test this may be to interview adoptees whose adoptive families hold a different position than their biological families. Have you conducted any interviews like this for your book?

I cannot accept that people who don’t believe in G-d must have something defective in their brains. It’s really arrogant to even suggest that, especially given that atheists are more educated, more intelligent (as you pointed out) and less selfishly motivated for doing acts of charity than Christians are. They're also under represented in prisons.

You said:

"A good way to test this may be to interview adoptees whose adoptive families hold a different position than their biological families. Have you conducted any interviews like this for your book?"

No, I am just at the very beginning stages. Although I think I was reading something about that the other day. And certainly know of people who were raised in atheistic homes with no mention of God and yet they claimed to have always believed. Here is one such person (Watch starting at 03:15):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6HLg2XUFOg

You said:

"I cannot accept that people who don’t believe in G-d must have something defective in their brains."

I'm not saying that.

"It’s really arrogant to even suggest that, especially given that atheists are more educated, more intelligent (as you pointed out)"

Actually the better educated ones were more likely to be believers. And more intelligent by 4 points but still average.

"and less selfishly motivated for doing acts of charity than Christians are."

That part is complete false as I explained elsewhere.

"They're also under represented in prisons."

That is true. Christians admit they are broken. Many atheists are more moral than some Christians. No one claims they aren't. The problem is that atheists have no foundation for saying what is right and what is wrong. Most do not believe in objective morality. Like Dawkins said, there is no good and no evil (River Out of Eden) and objective morality usually comes from religion (The God Delusion.)

Liar. Richard Dawkins said this:





Have you no shame? Religion is built on shame. You seem immune. Huh
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19-09-2016, 10:00 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(16-09-2016 02:30 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(15-09-2016 08:50 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  With a background in journalism, I am known for being unbiased.

Really ? What made you change that up when you came to TTA to post this feedback question ?

I see you're as delusional about yourself as you are about your deities. Facepalm

"Really ? What made you change that up when you came to TTA to post this feedback question ?"

I don't understand your question. I took journalism in college. Worked freelance for a few years. Started a marketing company. Went back to college and took social work. Before journalism, I went to college for architectural technology. Yeah, I have lot of interests. Also a singer/songwriter and put out a CD 16 years ago.

http://randy-ruggles-music.blogspot.ca/
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19-09-2016, 10:02 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(16-09-2016 02:42 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(15-09-2016 08:50 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  With a background in journalism, I am known for being unbiased.


The moment you think this, is the moment you're blind to seeing it and correcting it. There are few things more biased than someone convinced of their own lack of bias.

Well I'm not convinced of it. It's just what I've been told. Several times.
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19-09-2016, 10:18 PM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(16-09-2016 05:53 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  
(15-09-2016 08:50 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  Before I get back to reading and responding to the feedback, I had a thought today. I've had an idea for a few years about writing a book of atheist de-conversions so to speak.

You have got to be joking.

In this thread so far, you have:

-called us broken, corrupted mutants.

We're all broken corrupted mutants according to evolution. Evolution is based on mutations. They aren't necessarily a bad thing.

-linked atheism to a mental illness.

No I didn't.

-linked atheism to autism.

That one is a fact. I proved it.

-lied about links between atheism and war/genocide

No lies. I said they were anti-theists. Atheism is a necessary but not sufficient cause for the genocide of the 20th century.

-shown a complete lack of understanding regarding infant mental development

Nope. Wrong again.

-used cheap tabloids as reliable sources to back up science subjects

No I didn't,. They were quoting peer-reviewed journals. The articles are just more reader-friendly. And "tabloid" in journalism is merely the form of the paper as opposed to "broadsheet." There is no rule which says a newspaper in the form of tabloid cannot be reputable and trustworthy.

-lied about Galileo and his arrest

Nope. I was accurate.

-lied about Christianity inventing all sciences

Nope. I said most of the founders of modern science in the West were theists. That's a fact with which historians and even atheists like Dawkins and Krauss agree.

-repeatedly lied about science backing up your false claims

Nope. And I proved it each and very time.

-repeatedly linked pattern-seeking behaviors to religious belief

No. I said the opposite. I even called people out for conflating pattern-seeking with religion. Go back and look. I did it a few times. I did say that pattern-seeking amounted to a belief in an agent or a God. That is controversial but I believe it it true. And it's different from a particular religion.

-misquoted Darwin

No I didn't.

-linked atheism to homosexuality.

No I didn't. But there is evidence that more homosexuals are atheists according to Pew research:

http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/lgbt-...gs.oQ_V6As

Did I miss anything?


And now after all that you want to exploit personal stories for your financial gain?

(15-09-2016 08:50 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  I wonder if any of you would like to participate in an interview that might become a chapter in such a book.

No. After what you've posted so far, it's an insult that you are even asking.

(15-09-2016 08:50 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  Of course, you would have to have a compelling story. Obviously, "I've just never seen any evidence" won't quite do it.

And now you're going to judge us in regards to how exciting we are.

(15-09-2016 08:50 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  With a background in journalism, I am known for being unbiased.

Everything you have posted here has exhibited extreme bias.

With a background in journalism you have no business writing a book critiquing evolution, or one on the neurological functions of our brains.

With your behavior here you have no business writing a book that exploits the extremely personal stories of people you have already insulted and denigrated.
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19-09-2016, 10:19 PM
Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
The big bias is in associating anything religiousy to qualifying as associated with God belief. The notion of what a belief is traverses shakey grounds to begin anyway.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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