I cannot understand their view.
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13-04-2017, 10:29 AM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
It sounds like they think atheism is a choice. If you don't believe something, you don't believe it. I don't know how that can be considered "pointless". It seems to me such people are admitting that they are choosing to pretend to believe all this shit, rather than actually believing it.

I have a website here which discusses the issues and terminology surrounding religion and atheism. It's hopefully user friendly to all.
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13-04-2017, 10:36 AM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
My approach to the "you also have faith in science" argument because you are just taking the "word" of scientists and don't know if it's true, is that science produces results.

I may not fully understand all the science that goes into keeping a airplane in the air, but I know that the engineers that do understand the science, used that knowledge to make an aircraft that works. I sure as hell know that it's not flying on a magic cloud of pixie dust and fairy farts!

That would be my argument for the theory of evolution being true. Even though I may not understand fully how it works, the a same geological science that determined the age of the earth and the fossil record is that same geological science that works just as well finding oil & precious metals and the like.

The same understanding of biology that shows the relationship between all life on the planet is the same understanding of biology that we use in hospitals to successfully cure the sick and injured.

I don't know all the principles involved but I know that the science is accurate enough to make things that work. Religion has no such track record to point too.

A friend in the hole

"If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are." - Captain Picard
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13-04-2017, 10:44 AM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
(13-04-2017 10:36 AM)unsapien Wrote:  My approach to the "you also have faith in science" argument because you are just taking the "word" of scientists and don't know if it's true, is that science produces results.

When religious people say faith in religion is the same as faith in science, they are admitting their ignorance of science. Most "believers" in science have a good general grasp of the supporting evidence and the logic behind it, even if we are not conversant about all the details. Belief/disbelief may be binary, but knowledge is not just absolute or nothing -- that's a false dichotomy.
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13-04-2017, 10:46 AM (This post was last modified: 13-04-2017 10:50 AM by Robvalue.)
RE: I cannot understand their view.
And science is always falsifiable. So what is the probability that no one has noticed that the evidence falsifies it, or that there's a worldwide conspiracy to silence anyone who realizes? Especially considering the huge numbers of theists desperately trying to challenge science (particularly evolution) all the time. All it takes is one person to falsify it.

Edit: or that a particular theory is actually unfalsifiable, and no one has noticed this either.

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13-04-2017, 11:00 AM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
Religion really needs to stop picking a fight with science. It will lose every time.




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13-04-2017, 11:05 AM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
(13-04-2017 08:38 AM)Shane951 Wrote:  I talked to two Christians last night, and they were debating me because they believed atheism was pointless, and I carried on and told them that the burden of proof is on the person who holds the position. I then posed the question of God's "Divine Plan", and asked them, is it part of God's plan for millions of people in Africa, India, etc. to die of starvation and disease every year? They claimed that all of our life was himdenous ( I do not know the word, but basically all pleasures), and that the only pleasure in life is eventually to meet God in heaven. Absurd right?

Then they told me that I had faith in scientists because I do not know all of science and the evidence supported and they said that is the same as their faith in religion. I did not agree, as scientists gather their information off evidence and scientific method.
There was more to the debate, but literally I was just astonished how someone can hold such ignorant views like these./

These Christians need to read the Bible more. It doesn't entail fideism at all. The term "faith" in the Bible is meant as trust or belief. It doesn't refer to a source of justification. The claim in Romans 1 is that God has made all men to know that he exists. This can be interpreted two ways: either presuppositionalist or empiricist. Either one leads to dead ends. If they claim fideism is fine because "you do it too", they're committing fallacy. If they're simply trying to point out that your trust of science is faith-based, they're just confused. Scientific data is readily available on the internet through tons of peer reviewed studies and papers. You don't have to just believe that science is true because scientists say so. As you said, science provides justification. I would recommend debating with people who are smarter and have a better defense of their religion. Debating with the common "Christian" fideists is just boring. Move on to people who actually give even a single reason for their beliefs rather than those who try to cloak their lack of justification with fallacy and false equation.

"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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13-04-2017, 11:41 AM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
(13-04-2017 08:38 AM)Shane951 Wrote:  I then posed the question of God's "Divine Plan", and asked them, is it part of God's plan for millions of people in Africa, India, etc. to die of starvation and disease every year? They claimed that all of our life was himdenous ( I do not know the word, but basically all pleasures), and that the only pleasure in life is eventually to meet God in heaven.
I think they were misusing the term "hedonistic" and trying to say that all pleasure in this life is of no importance, that the only real pleasure is being united with god forever in the afterlife.

In reality THAT is the real nihilism here (as they would misunderstand / misuse the term "nihilism"). They claim atheism "teaches" that life has no meaning, when atheism isn't a teaching, it's a belief about one particular thing. Where and how one derives or makes meaning and purpose for themselves is an entirely separate matter, but if you believe, as evangelicals do, that this world is not your home, you're just passing through, waiting to start real living when you get to heaven, and this life is nothing but a test or schoolroom or something ... then you believe that this life is not meaningful, full stop. So it's projection on their part that they think we have meaningless lives. They have removed the meaning from their OWN lives, and deferred it to an imagined afterlife, whereas we make meaning in the only life we know we have -- THIS one.

This notion, by the way, that life without their deity is just meaningless rutting and dissipation, living for pleasurable stimuli and nothing else, is just what they have been conditioned to think they would descend to that level without their religious faith. They are terrified of thinking of humans as part of the animal kingdom rather than having "dominion" over it, terrified of primal urges, shitting and pissing and fucking and killing prey and all the other "nature, red in tooth and claw" stuff, as if humans would become nothing but beasts (rather like Nebuchadnezzar who was according to scripture cursed by god for his arrogance and went around eating grass like a beast until properly humbled).

It is the root of asceticism in general, which ascribes dualistic "good and evil" to aspects of human nature, thought and conduct, and treats the impulse to "evil" as a thing-in-itself which somehow attaches itself to our physical being or "flesh". The notion is that one will never be rid of one's worst impulses until one is rid of one's troublesome "flesh".

This denial that we have some aspects in common with other animals, the negation / mortifying of the "flesh", the pining for heaven, the notion that this life is of no lasting importance, etc., is something they are so steeped in that they can't even get their minds around how one could POSSIBLY live ethically, reasonably and kindly with fellow humans if you believe there is no strongman in the sky glaring down at you and that there is no afterlife.
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13-04-2017, 12:09 PM
I cannot understand their view.
They're just indoctrinated, nothing much to understand. I have to say that I too have a problem with understanding how one can be believer.

The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.

Mikhail Bakunin.
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17-04-2017, 06:43 PM
RE: I cannot understand their view.
(13-04-2017 08:38 AM)Shane951 Wrote:  I talked to two Christians last night, and they were debating me because they believed atheism was pointless, and I carried on and told them that the burden of proof is on the person who holds the position. I then posed the question of God's "Divine Plan", and asked them, is it part of God's plan for millions of people in Africa, India, etc. to die of starvation and disease every year? They claimed that all of our life was himdenous ( I do not know the word, but basically all pleasures), and that the only pleasure in life is eventually to meet God in heaven. Absurd right?

Then they told me that I had faith in scientists because I do not know all of science and the evidence supported and they said that is the same as their faith in religion. I did not agree, as scientists gather their information off evidence and scientific method.
There was more to the debate, but literally I was just astonished how someone can hold such ignorant views like these./

I enjoy argument, so I will sometimes engage such as these, if they don't seem too dimwitted.

OTOH, if I'm pressed for time and a religious type tells me that "atheism is pointless", I may say something like,
"Let's say you're right. Doesn't bother me in the slightest. Why should it bother you?"

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Dr H

"So, I became an anarchist, and all I got was this lousy T-shirt."
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