Just thought I would share...
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
08-01-2012, 03:23 AM
Just thought I would share...
Hello everyone, I am new to the forum, however have been a subscriber to TTA for several years now.

Just thought I would share a bit of a dialogue I have been having with a believer who contacted me via Youtube - so far it seems to be a classic case of delusion blinding reason. You will notice how (so far) he doesn't seem to address any of the points I raise... funny that ; )

Have altered his screenname to 'THE_THEIST' in order to protect the innocent...

In order of correspondence...........................

THE_THEIST:

What do you think happens after you die?


GO1GODFURTHER:

Actually, I don't know. And neither do you. Nobody does.

My best bet would be that nothing happens. My brain will die and my mind and memories will go with it. This will be the same for every living thing - no 'special' exceptions.

This prospect doesn't scare me in the least - I didn't exist for billions of years before my birth, and I won't exist after my death.

Why, what do you think happens after you die?


THE_THEIST:

Well actually I do know what happens after you die.
You go one of two places Heaven or hell. I know this because the Bible says so. If you accept Jesus as your Lord than you wont have to suffer the second death which is hell.

Let me ask you this, are you 100% sure that nothing happens?
Do you know this for a fact?


GO1GODFURTHER:

Okay, so the bible says so. Other holy books say other things. How do you know that the bible is correct?

Am I 100% sure that nothing happens when I die? As I have already said, I am NOT sure. I very rarely claim to be 'sure' of anything. I am honest enough to admit that I DON'T know for sure. NO ONE does.

It strikes me that religious people constantly require certainty. To my way of thinking, certainty is difficult to attain and dangerous when asserted. If you are 'certain' that someone IS a witch, then it is much easier to give yourself licence to burn them at the stake. Honesty is difficult I know, but I think it is worth striving for and for me is one of the pillars in gaining self respect. Bear in mind, every parent of a convicted killer or rapist KNOWS, in the first instance, that their child is innocent - KNOWING something to be true does not affect the reality of the situation.

May I suggest a short video that represents my views much more eloquently than I can state them. Its from a wonderful series called 'The Ascent of Man' by Dr Jacob Bronowski (no, this is not a series positing atheism and Dr Bronowski to the best of my knowledge is a practicing Jew):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7br6ibK8ic

In this clip he is talking about the possible consequences of science in the hands of the wrong people - the types of people who speak of certainty, without the humility to admit that their views may be wrong.


THE_THEIST:

Okay so in your world there is still a possibility that there is a God.

How do I know the Bible is correct.
Well it was written by God. In the Bible it uses "thus saith the Lord" and similar phrases over 3,000 times. The Bible certainly claims its authorship is divine, not human.

Historical evidence supports the Bible. No one has yet been able to identify a single historical mistake anywhere in the Bible. That in itself is amazing. If man wrote it, we would certainly find historical errors after all these years-but there is none. So that you can study more on this point, as well as the next few, I recommend that you read any of the following books
New evidence that demands a Verdict by Josh McDowell, The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel, and The signature of God by Grant Jeffrey

All Three books provide powerful evidence that the Bible is not from the hands of man, but from the hand of Almighty God.

Archaeological evidence supports the Bible. To date, archaeologists have not discovered a single thing in the Middle East that has proved the Bible wrong. Actually, there have been more than 25,000 archaeological finds relating to people places, and events in the Bible, and not one has contradicted anything in the Scripture.

Fulfilled prophecies validate the Bible
What is the only book in the world that contains hundreds of very detailed prophecies? The correct answer is the Bible. The book of Mormon doesn't, the Koran for Muslims doesn't, and the Bhagavad Gita for Hindus doesn't.
When the Bible was written, 25 percent of the conte3nt predicted future events. And every single one of those prophecies has come true in the minutest detail, except for the few remaining prophecies about the return of Jesus Christ to earth. Statistically there is no way that man can predict the future with 100 percent accuracy.
Who is the only one who can do this?

Here is a video that I recommend to you
Please take 15 minutes of your life and watch it
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vj0qKthC...plpp_video


GO1GODFURTHER:

"How do I know the Bible is correct.
Well it was written by God. In the Bible it uses "thus saith the Lord" and similar phrases over 3,000 times. The Bible certainly claims its authorship is divine, not human." - you do understand that this argument is circular?

As if to re-inforce my last message to you (which you haven't commented on by the way) I read this today:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/jan/05...ery-claims

THIS is an example of where misplaced 'certainty' can take you. When reading it I had to keep reminding myself that this happened in 2011 and not 1311...

In answer to your question, yes of course in my world view there is the 'possibility' of a god. But where does that get you? There is also the 'possibility' of fairies, unicorns and giants but I see no reason to believe in them either. Using your source for evidence (the bible), I SHOULD be believing in unicorns and giants because I believe that they are mentioned there too. Do you believe in unicorns and giants? (this is not a rhetorical question, I genuinely want to know your answer). How about talking donkeys? Given that donkeys do not posess the necessary laryngial or oral construction to form intelligible words, do you believe that a donkey can talk?

Prophecy is easy to diagnose in hindsight. Countless psychics and readers of Nostrodamus can tell you all about prophecies that have come to pass. This is not impressive to me. If you take some vague proposal from the past, and then search through history to find a matching incident, then of course you are going to conclude that the prophecy has come true. Show me a prophecy that details specific names, dates and exact details of an specific incident (which could in no way be interpreted as some other incident) then you may have the shadow of a point. Until that time prophecy is entirely redundant as an evidential method.

But all of this aside, let me (for arguments sake) take it as read that god exists. Why would I worship him? What reasons would I have? 'Fear is NOT a good reason, and I genuinely don't believe that would be correct to worship anything out of 'fear'. In fact, I would go a step further and say that you should never worship anything. I question anyone's sense of personal responsibility if they give in to worship. And personal responsibility is central to morality and ethics, I feel.

Unfortunately I do not have the time, at present, to watch the video you have sent (I am off to work shortly), however I promise that I will and let you know what I think.


THE_THEIST:

You should worship God because in doing so you will inherit eternal life.
Aside from the fear of going to an eternal hell that you don't want to talk about, God offers so much.
God is Love. He is the whole purpose we are here on this earth.
He made us in His image. He made us so that we can live with him forever, and praise and love Him and those around us.
Our whole purpose on this earth is to love one another, and to help each other with the gifts God gave us. Nobody is perfect, and has everything, which is why we need each other.

In your world, nothing happens after we die. Our whole purpose on this earth is to what then?

Who am I (and what am I worth?)

Where did I come from?

Why am I here?


GO1GODFURTHER:

Actually, I quite enjoy talking about hell - in much the same way that I find talking about vampires and monsters enjoyable. I have no reason to belive any of it is true but it makes for a great bed time story.

I will try to answer your questions as best I can:

Q1. Our whole purpose on this earth is to what then?
A. A question without any meaningful answers i'm afraid. What is an ants purpose in the grand scheme of things? Is it doing what god intended it to do in the grand plan? What then of a small child born in to sub-Saharan Africa who dies of starvation before it's third birthday? How does this child fit into gods great plan? Perhaps the answer is '42'.

Q2. Who am I (and what am I worth?)
A. I know exactly who I am, and am well aware of my worth to people I interact with and who love and care for me. This is NOT a question that I need to dwell on. This is a question perhaps better aimed at a young person who has just left school and is heading over to India to 'find themselves' lol. Not an intellectually serious question for me I have to say...

Q3. Where did I come from?
A. My parents. England. Gloucestershire in England (to be exact). Please let me know if you require any further specific information on this point.

Q4. Why am I here?
A. See Q1

To be very honest with you, I expected more from the questions that you would ask me. Whilst I understand that these questions would pose some kind of existential crisis to someone who perhaps wasn't particularly intellectually serious, for someone like myself who has spent most of his life (several decades in fact) exercising my brain... actually thinking about things and changing my mind about many issues over the years, such questions are somewhat patronising. Please reserve such questions for the overly gullible and easily led.

On the subject of questions though, I cannot help but notice that you do not seem to want to address any of the points that I have raised, nor indeed the questions I have posed.

Q. Do you believe in unicorns and giants?

Q. How about talking donkeys? Given that donkeys do not posess the necessary laryngial or oral construction to form intelligible words, do you believe that a donkey can talk?

Let me just say that I respect your honesty in the things that you have said, and I can tell that you genuinely believe them. You are forthright in your beliefs, however your thought processes and phrasing of those beleifs appear to be the dogma that you have picked up from your cultural background. You seem to say exactly the things that I would have guessed that you would say, based upon my conversations with other strong believers and exposure to the religious via forums like the Internet. Perhaps what I am trying to say is that you appear to be selling me something that I do not need, using a stock standard (religious) salesmans pitch. it's almost like your are reading this stuff from the back of a pamphlet. Please don't think that I am trying to be antagonistic when I say this. It's just that I would much rather deal with another adult human being rather than someone who is the simple mouth piece for the 'congregation'. I genuinely don't feel like I am hearing any of YOUR, personal, hard fought for and justly won opinions. Do you have any opinions of your own?

A couple of things about myself:

1. I am an atheist. This means that I find no credible reason for me to believe in the existence of any god. Atheism is for me (and I appreciate that you will no doubt disagree) the most honest, rational and most of all moral standpoint I can take. I reserve the right to question ALL authority and would consider it immoral to partake of any action which would contravene my own innate sense of ethical practice, personal responsibility being paramount. I reserve the right to view any action taken by another and judge it based upon my sense of morality - no one gets 'a pass', not even the god of the bible. I consider THE MESSAGE to be of utmost importance and NOT THE MESSENGER.

2. I am also an avowed skeptic. This means that I question everything and make every effort to find actual truth wherever the path may lead me.

3. I question anything that I find appealing. Those things which are appealing to us (the existence of an afterlife for instance) are those things that we must ask the hardest questions of. It is pointless believing something because it makes you feel comfortable or good. Embrace reality with an honest and open mind and be prepared to reject those cherished opinions that you have nurtured and protected over the years, when incontrovertible evidence is presented which proves otherwise.

I have fought long and hard for these opinions and having reached them, I find my mind clear of confusion and able to deal with almost anything in a rational and logical way.

Apologies, I have not yet had the time to watch that video you sent, but I promise I will do so...

Take care.

"Truth, in the matters of religion, is simply the opinion that has survived."
- Oscar Wilde
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 3 users Like go1godfurther's post
08-01-2012, 08:43 AM
RE: Just thought I would share...
Very nice little argument Smile I like how both of you have remained civil though I expect he might react badly to your last post Tongue Kinda sad that there weren't a few more rounds... please post more once he replies Smile
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes morondog's post
08-01-2012, 09:33 AM
RE: Just thought I would share...
Did you ever watch the video?

"I think of myself as an intelligent, sensitive human being with the soul of a clown which always forces me to blow it at the most important moments." -Jim Morrison
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-01-2012, 11:08 AM
RE: Just thought I would share...
(08-01-2012 09:33 AM)lucradis Wrote:  Did you ever watch the video?

Obviously if he had, he'd be saved by now.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like Erxomai's post
08-01-2012, 11:36 AM
RE: Just thought I would share...
The video is just about another guy with a near-death hallucination.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Ben's post
08-01-2012, 02:22 PM
RE: Just thought I would share...
Oh look. Yet another theist with the same "arguments" and "thoughts". I tire of these clones constantly attempting to assert their "logic"with false evidence and outdated information. Good job Go1godfurther for keeping a level head while "arguing" with this clone.

NEW AND IMPROVED!
Twice the anger, Half the space!
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
09-01-2012, 07:13 PM
RE: Just thought I would share...
(08-01-2012 11:36 AM)Ben Wrote:  The video is just about another guy with a near-death hallucination.

I'm a firm believer in experiencing hallucinations long before you're near-death for this very reason. Big Grin

I am us and we is me. ... bitches.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-01-2013, 05:04 PM
RE: Just thought I would share...
Apologies for the (ultra) late update on this thread. A few more conversational volleys have been 'fired'...


THE_THEIST:

So an atheist.
Before I get into detail to answer every question you want to know, first lets get down to the beginning.

You see in my Faith and belief, God created the heaven and the earth. Everything you see around you from each little grass blade with ants living in the ground, to the mountains and skies. Everything in between and everything in this vast universe. Each serving its purpose for Gods liking, many in which He created for us to enjoy because He loves us.


As I explained before, to keep it short, we are here to help and love each other, and to glorify God the Creator of the universe.

So in your atheistic world, How did the world come to be?


--- and ---


THE_THEIST:

To answer your question "If you die without accepting Jesus, hell is your destination.
Doesn't seem fair huh?
Well I will get into further detail with you for reasoning's but to keep it short for now, Jesus is the answer to the worlds most intriguing question, what will happen after I die?
That is why I am here.
You are part of my life testimony. God lead me to you to talk to you about Jesus. I am hear to glorify Him and everything He does. I care about those who don't know God, because it will be an eternally regrettable choice you make if you reject Him.
It is simple to follow and once you accept Him I promise He will do wonders in your life, and you won't have to perish. You will be with Him eternally.

Hope to hear from you soon



GO1GODFURTHER:

Hello Mr Hannan

Firstly, I hope you had a great christmas and have a wonderful 2013 ahead of you.

RE the following: "You see in my Faith and belief, God created the heaven and the earth. Everything you see around you from each little grass blade with ants living in the ground, to the mountains and skies. Everything in between and everything in this vast universe. Each serving its purpose for Gods liking, many in which He created for us to enjoy because He loves us."

Faith is not a path to truth - and 'truth' is something about which I care deeply. Faith will only get you as far as accepting the cultural beliefs that have been passed down to you. The assertion that god created everything is merely an extension of your faith - it is not based on any objective evidence. It seems logical to you in the sense that it IS completely logical from an earth based perspective, that the stars certainly revolve around our tiny planet. It's only once you step out of your relative perspective that you find that our planet is NOT the centre of the universe. It's a question of stepping away from what you think you know to be true, and objectively looking at the evidence to find out what is actually true. Any assertion of 'truth' without evidence is, to my mind at least, to be classified as dogma and is to be distrusted.

RE the following: "As I explained before, to keep it short, we are here to help and love each other, and to glorify God the Creator of the universe"

My only question to you would be how you know this. If this is a message that was passed on to you culturally, then I have no reason to believe it to be true. If, however, this is something that you discovered for yourself then I would certainly be interested to hear about that.

RE the following: "So in your atheistic world, How did the world come to be?"

On this I plead ignorance. However, please be aware that just because I can't explain something doesn't mean that you can simply insert a cultural myth or comforting explanation to deal with the issue. I take the honest route, and one which Socrates espoused, and say "I don't know". I say it with absolute confidence and with a certain level of pride. To assert that I do know something when I clearly don't would be foolhardy and dishonest. In your question I assume you are referring to a first cause? Once existence of particles has been established then the laws of particle physics come in to play and everything we observe from there follows, straight through to the formation of complex matter, dust clouds in space coalescing into galaxies, the formation of stars and planets and eventually the formation of complex molecules (including organic ones). In terms of the first cause, no one yet knows for sure and it may be a question we can never answer. However, quantum fluctations are a possibility and we do know from objective scientific investigation that particles DO indeed spontaneously appear and disappear in a perfect vacuum. If you feel that god is causing this all to happen then you are perfectly free to do so, but I would ask again "How do you know that god is doing this?"

As you can probably gather, my mindset is firmly set towards logic, rationality and objective truth. In my experience, I have this in common with most atheists - particularly if they have come from a religious background and have arrived at atheism via some personal 'journey'. I am very interested in religion and have been for most of my life. After looking long and hard at religion, I find it wanting. It is steeped in dogma, assertions without evidence and is anything but objective. For example: the koran is said to be a sacred book and we have seen in recent years that desecration of this 'sacred book' leads to howls of outrage and the deaths of innocent people around the world. The fact that the koran is sacred is not objective. If muslims were not indoctrinated with this idea from a very young age, with the idea being constantly reinforced over and over again, they could never know this. If this was something that they didn't know, they could NEVER arrive at this conclusion from merely studying the koran. The koran is a book. It's printed on paper and bound with wood and glue. There is nothing intrinsically sacred about any book. No scientific investigation under controlled conditions on this book could possibly arrive at that conclusion. It is simply an idea, which has been passed down from parent to child for the past 1500 years (give or take). And yet, setting fire to this book results in the deaths of people on the other side of the world. Under what conditions can this even approach making sense? Only under the conditions of religious assertion. This is the true danger of accepting assertions which are allowed to go unchallenged and not re-aligned with that which is objectively true.

I would like to ask you: "What is god like? How would you describe him?"

I (genuinely) appreciate your concern for me as an unbeliever and understand that your heart is most certainly in the right place Mr Hannan.

Take care


--- and ---


GO1GODFURTHER:

Hi Mr Hannan

I forgot to mention that I DID watch the video that you sent me and I didn't find it overly impressive I am afraid to say.

Claims of near death experiences are mere anecdote and do not constitute proof of any kind. There HAVE been attempts to investigate NDE's from a 'scientific' perspective and they have failed to prove anything except that our mammalian brains do all kinds of crazy things when starved of oxygen. Have the courage to look up responses to NDE's on some skeptical websites - you SHOULD look at every issue from multiple points of view, shouldn't you?

A more fundamental comment I have is that as a person of 'faith' you shouldn't want NDE's to be proof of god. You shouldn't want ANYTHING to be proof of god. You shouldn't WANT proof of god. You should only want faith. After all, if you had proof then you would have knowledge of god and not faith in god. You could no longer call yourself a person of faith...

Hebrews 11:1 states "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

You seem to be someone who wants to 'see'.

Take care

"Truth, in the matters of religion, is simply the opinion that has survived."
- Oscar Wilde
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: