My biggest question about atheism
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16-01-2014, 07:05 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(16-01-2014 06:54 PM)sporehux Wrote:  Creationists think science equals evil labcoat demons plotting anti bible experiments.

Well, that's only the inner circle. Drinking Beverage

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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16-01-2014, 07:56 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(16-01-2014 10:20 AM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  I was talking to my atheist fiancee yesterday about what caused the big bang and she mentioned that she "had faith" that science would figure it out. The argument that "the issue is too tough for laymen to understand, so we just have to have faith that these people who are smarter than ourselves have figured it out" bears a striking similarity to me to the words of the religious saying the same thing about God's ways.

The difference here is amounts of evidence. There is no evidence that God exists that doesn't require you to assume he exists in the first place.

While we don't have all the answers on the big bang, there is still plenty of evidence that everything originated from a central location over 13 billion years ago and has been spreading from that point ever sense. You can argue cause and purpose all you want, but we still have a pretty good idea that it (or something similar) happened; we don't have any evidence that God even exists.
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16-01-2014, 08:13 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(16-01-2014 07:56 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  There is no evidence that God exists that doesn't require you to assume he exists in the first place.
7 pages in for this thread and the OP still keeps dodging this question Dodgy

@lookingforanswers let me rephrase my question in the most simple terms:-

What good reason do we have to assume that a God exists ?

Dreams/Hallucinations/delusions are not evidence
Wishful thinking is not evidence
Disproved statements&Illogical conclusions are not evidence
Logical fallacies&Unsubstantiated claims are not evidence
Vague prophecies is not evidence
Data that requires a certain belief is not evidence
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16-01-2014, 10:51 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(16-01-2014 06:51 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Your presumption of the origins of those customs is simply ignorance. Every single law, rule, proscription, "view", and absolutely every other single element imported by religion into religious texts came from (documented and known) pre-existent cultural antecedents. Not one was "given" to culture from religion". Every one was TAKEN up by religion from the culture, and then declared to be sacred, and declared to be "from god" ONLY by humans, who presumed they could speak for a deity.
Religion sanctions culture. Culture never sanctions religion.

Dafuq?

I said that, not lookingforanswers!
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18-01-2014, 09:39 AM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(16-01-2014 10:20 AM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  I was talking to my atheist fiancee yesterday about what caused the big bang and she mentioned that she "had faith" that science would figure it out.

I'm skeptical that this conversation ever took place.
For 1. She doesn't have faith when it comes to science. She has trust in what science does and how it does it. It's the method that's trustworthy. That method helps to ensure the integrity of skyscrapers, the flight of airline jets, medical life saving procedures, of nearly damn well everything in your world that makes this world a better, safer place to live in.

Faith means that you have no reason to believe that something will happen, but you think it will anyway.

Another word for faith is delusion.

Now if she had said "I have the delusion that a honey badger will figure out what caused the big bang", then and only then would I believe that she is your fiancee.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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22-01-2014, 03:00 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(16-01-2014 08:13 PM)IndianAtheist Wrote:  
(16-01-2014 07:56 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  There is no evidence that God exists that doesn't require you to assume he exists in the first place.
7 pages in for this thread and the OP still keeps dodging this question Dodgy

@lookingforanswers let me rephrase my question in the most simple terms:-

What good reason do we have to assume that a God exists ?

Well, frankly, I just came on here to ask the atheist viewpoint on a question. If you want my viewpoint on it, I think the cosmological argument is the most compelling argument on the issue, and I have never heard an atheist argument that has given me a good reason to think the other way (which is part of why I came on here to ask in the first place).

If you want a good summary of the cosmological argument, spoken more eloquently than I can, I'd recommend following the below link. The cosmological argument is the first one that the speaker addresses.

http://www.apologetics315.com/2011/11/is...ig-in.html

(18-01-2014 09:39 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  
(16-01-2014 10:20 AM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  I was talking to my atheist fiancee yesterday about what caused the big bang and she mentioned that she "had faith" that science would figure it out.

I'm skeptical that this conversation ever took place.
For 1. She doesn't have faith when it comes to science. She has trust in what science does and how it does it. It's the method that's trustworthy. That method helps to ensure the integrity of skyscrapers, the flight of airline jets, medical life saving procedures, of nearly damn well everything in your world that makes this world a better, safer place to live in.

Faith means that you have no reason to believe that something will happen, but you think it will anyway.

Another word for faith is delusion.

Now if she had said "I have the delusion that a honey badger will figure out what caused the big bang", then and only then would I believe that she is your fiancee.

I'm thankful that trolls like Mockingbird and Rahn didn't respond to my original post quicker or I would have a much lesser view of the atheists on this forum.
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22-01-2014, 03:58 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(22-01-2014 03:00 PM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  Well, frankly, I just came on here to ask the atheist viewpoint on a question. If you want my viewpoint on it, I think the cosmological argument is the most compelling argument on the issue, and I have never heard an atheist argument that has given me a good reason to think the other way (which is part of why I came on here to ask in the first place).

If you want a good summary of the cosmological argument, spoken more eloquently than I can, I'd recommend following the below link. The cosmological argument is the first one that the speaker addresses.

I'm familiar with WLC's debates. I've watched many of them. I came to realize they were better referred to as scripts, not debates. He doesn't really address the arguments against his viewpoint, regardless of who he's debating. He also tries to bind his religion to the cosmological argument. In summary, he believes in a first cause, and that the first cause is his god. Zeus can easily be substituted for the Christian god; the argument still works.

While I find it beyond my comprehension to imagine a universe without a first cause, I find it beyond all reason to imagine a god without a first cause. If your not familiar with special pleading, you should look it up. One of the biggest issues I have, as an atheist, is how theists claim everything has to have a creator and a beginning... except for god. God gets a hall pass, of sorts, from that logic. The answer I hear most is 'well, he's GOD!' To which I respond 'Well, it's the UNIVERSE.'

The argument for a finely tuned universe is equally ludicrous to me. It basically says "If things were different, things... would be different." The universe, from what we know so far, is horribly tuned for life. Believe me when I say I won't be first in line to colonize Mars. Our own planet is pretty nasty. It's only through modern medicine and science that we've managed to extend our lives to a rather short 70-80 years.

(22-01-2014 03:00 PM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  I'm thankful that trolls like Mockingbird and Rahn didn't respond to my original post quicker or I would have a much lesser view of the atheists on this forum.

When I was a child, I was told by adults that my flesh would burn eternally in hell if I didn't pray for forgiveness. That was back when trolls were fictional monsters that lived under bridges. Now hell is fictional and the trolls are real. Plot twist! Tongue

If Jesus died for our sins, why is there still sin? If man was created from dust, why is there still dust? If Americans came from Europe, why are there still Europeans?
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22-01-2014, 04:17 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(15-01-2014 10:06 AM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  Hey, I'm new on the forums and I wanted to pose a question here that no atheist has ever been able to satisfactorily answer for me.

First, just a couple of disclaimers, I am not here to bash anyone's beliefs. In general, I consider myself spiritual, but disagree with many of the beliefs of organized religions. More than anything, I consider myself a rational person who tries to make sure I can justify everything I believe with evidence. I'm currently looking into atheism and in general I am just a person who is looking for answers.

Anyways, I would love to get an educated atheist perspective on this question:

Is there any evidence in science for anything (ie. an effect) that does not require a cause?

I can understand a lot of aspects of atheism. I can understand evolution, I can even follow as far as the big bang, but my question with it has always arisen at that point.

Disclaimer #2: Like I say, I know this is an atheist website, I'm not trying to provoke anyone, I'm just a genuinely curious person looking for an answer or at least a constructive discussion, so don't take this post the wrong way.

When it comes to the big bang, the atheists I have discussed this with seem to treat the big bang itself as the answer, but I've always looked at it as just another question. Where did the big bang come from? What came before the big bang? etc.

When it comes down to the bare bones of it, everything in the universe of which I am aware has a cause. Science is entirely based around this concept. The scientific method is simply a method for finding facts through repeatable cause and effect experiments. There doesn't seem to be anything in it that would explain the start of the cause and effect chain that resulted in our existence.

The problem is that if there is nothing in this universe that can exist without a cause, then where did everything come from?

To me, the existence of anything at all (the big bang, humanity, the universe, or anything else) seems to require something that does not require a cause...something that we call God. Now, don't get bogged down on what this means, I use the term in the broadest philosophical sense ie. just a creator that exists without being created (eg. not necessarily a God who gives a crap about what happens on earth or how humans live their lives).

But, of course, I came on here to see if the atheist community has an explanation for how reality could exist without the existence of that sort of God. Essentially, I am looking for an explanation of how the cause and effect chain starts in the absence of such a God.

Here is the truth. lol

Everything is created from something else or that thing is Eternal.

If we don't have something that is Eternal, then things continue to get smaller and smaller and smaller through infinity and that is rather illogical.

From a scientific perspective, we don't know if that which is Eternal is 1 ingredient or many ingredients nor do we know what is Eternal.
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22-01-2014, 05:45 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
(22-01-2014 03:58 PM)guitar_nut Wrote:  
(22-01-2014 03:00 PM)lookingforanswers Wrote:  Well, frankly, I just came on here to ask the atheist viewpoint on a question. If you want my viewpoint on it, I think the cosmological argument is the most compelling argument on the issue, and I have never heard an atheist argument that has given me a good reason to think the other way (which is part of why I came on here to ask in the first place).

If you want a good summary of the cosmological argument, spoken more eloquently than I can, I'd recommend following the below link. The cosmological argument is the first one that the speaker addresses.

I'm familiar with WLC's debates. I've watched many of them. I came to realize they were better referred to as scripts, not debates. He doesn't really address the arguments against his viewpoint, regardless of who he's debating. He also tries to bind his religion to the cosmological argument. In summary, he believes in a first cause, and that the first cause is his god. Zeus can easily be substituted for the Christian god; the argument still works.

While I find it beyond my comprehension to imagine a universe without a first cause, I find it beyond all reason to imagine a god without a first cause. If your not familiar with special pleading, you should look it up. One of the biggest issues I have, as an atheist, is how theists claim everything has to have a creator and a beginning... except for god. God gets a hall pass, of sorts, from that logic. The answer I hear most is 'well, he's GOD!' To which I respond 'Well, it's the UNIVERSE.'

I do tend to agree with your point that the cosmological argument definitely does not prove the existence of any particular God. I don't think it can be Zeus, because he wasn't a creator God (I think that was his dad Chronos, if I remember correctly), but I get your point.

The response of "special pleading" to the cosmological argument really is non-responsive to the argument. The problem is that God is the conclusion of the argument, not a premise. So, by raising "special pleading" in that case, you are not attacking any of the premises and you are not attacking a jump in logic between the steps that take you from the premises to the conclusion. Essentially, I suppose you could say that the point of the argument is that there needs to be a special pleading to prove the existence of anything at all. That "special pleading" is called God (although if you prefer to call it Zeus or Chronos, you can, but it is just arguing semantics).

For the most part, the way I see it is there are two options to solve the issue: 1. Either you need to have an ever-existent God that requires no cause, or 2. you need to have an ever-existent universe that requires no cause (unless you can think of a third alternative). So, which seems more likely?

I favour God as being the more likely option because it fits the logic (WLC lays out the necessary qualities that God must have according to the cosmological argument, many of which would not fit with an ever-existent universe). There also seem to be too many arguments against the universe being ever-existent, such as all scientific evidence showing the universe starting from a singularity (ie. the big bang), logical issues such as the impossibility of a grouping of finite matter and energy somehow adding up to an infinite universe, as well as various philosophical issues that make my head hurt when I even try to think about them.
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22-01-2014, 06:11 PM
RE: My biggest question about atheism
The universe did not start from a singularity, so the premise of your final paragraph is suspect.

The fact that your head hurts doesn't mean there is a God. He's not an Advil.

Instead of giving up because of a headache, you should science more. Wink
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