Please, I need some help with this discussion.
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06-03-2014, 01:43 PM
RE: Please, I need some help with this discussion.
I had a hard time reading any further than this asinine quote, "Atheism is great for some, but it can't explain much without having a religious faith to believe in evolution.".

This is wrong on several levels. First of all, evolution has nothing to do with atheism, evidenced by the fact that there are MANY theists that accept evolution. Including Dr. Francis Collins, an Evangelical Christian.

Second, even if evolution were disproved tomorrow, that in itself would offer zero evidence for the existence of a god.

And of course, it requires zero faith to believe in evolution, since it has BEEN F'N OBSERVED!
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06-03-2014, 03:15 PM
RE: Please, I need some help with this discussion.
(06-03-2014 01:43 PM)Simon Moon Wrote:  I had a hard time reading any further than this asinine quote, "Atheism is great for some, but it can't explain much without having a religious faith to believe in evolution.".

This is wrong on several levels. First of all, evolution has nothing to do with atheism, evidenced by the fact that there are MANY theists that accept evolution. Including Dr. Francis Collins, an Evangelical Christian.

Second, even if evolution were disproved tomorrow, that in itself would offer zero evidence for the existence of a god.

And of course, it requires zero faith to believe in evolution, since it has BEEN F'N OBSERVED!

This equivocation is just an eyesore, at the very least christians should understand their opponent before fighting

It's only a debate if both parties are willing to let each other's opinions change their own.
If you aren't willing to change in light of learning more about what you fight for, what the hell are you doing expecting the other party to want to change?
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10-03-2014, 08:39 AM
RE: Please, I need some help with this discussion.
Well folks, This is where it's got to so far........and it's stayed amicable!

Any thoughts about where to head next?


SW Hi Eric and Michael , before I reply to the above I just want to step out of the conversation for a minute. I genuinely am interested in your experience and thoughts. I have a real desire to learn and understand. We may never see eye to eye and yet, you never know, maybe we will. What I do know is that better understanding each other can only be a good thing. With this in mind I'd also like you to understand that saying things like 'atheists see nothing intrinsically wrong with nuking the planet or raping babies' is not just incorrect, but also grossly unfair and pretty inflammatory.

Please, once again, Atheism is simply a lack of belief in gods. That's it. Really, that's it.

It prescribes nothing, has no teachings, belief system, becrees nothing.

It simply describes a person with no belief in gods. That's the start and the end of it.

I want very much to take some of the heat out of this conversation so that we can remain respectful, listen clearly to each other and, hopefully, learn from each other.

In order to continue though I really need you to appreciate what the definition of atheism is.

Best, Simon.
6 March at 13:43 · Like

SW And, Eric , thanks for answering my question. You raised some points that made me stop and think. I do have more thoughts about it that I'd like to ask.
6 March at 13:48 · Like

MS Sure, I did say right at the start I wanted this to stay amicable.

Apologies for generalizations. Perhaps you can understand the offense and frustration we endure every time the self styled high priest of atheism, Richard Dawkins, opens his mouth. I personally view him as less of an atheist and more of an "anti-Christian". Someone who spends most of his time attacking our religion specifically and less actually promoting his own world view.

I admire your quest for the purest form of atheism. We too of course, pursue the truest Christianity. I can't spend my time defending it from the people who break the basic rules: "thou shalt not... commit adultary (Henry VIII), ...covet anothers property (crusaders), ...have another god before me (catholics-the pope). Christianity is essentially a personal walk with God where we each will one day stand individually before him to take account of our lives. The potential for it to be abused is endless, but I choose to find the truth and desire the selfless, loving, giving, hope-filled life Jesus set as an example.

My take on the supernatural Eric mentioned is that if God is the all powerful, all loving, all knowing creator who made the universe then that same power and authority is still active and is available to those who believe Him and follow his principles as promised in the Bible. Not the ability to summon lightning bolts (as much as it would be awesome) because that is at odds with the purest nature of godliness we seek, but rather for life changing miracles, such as healing, relationship restorations, protection and ultimately salvation.

There are whole fields of metaphysics, mathematics and nuclear physics on a quest to explain the extra dimensions, relativity and string theories out there by some of the greatest minds convinced scientifically there is something more out there. There are most definately a lot of questions about our existence that logically and rationally need answers. Well my God explains an awful lot of that, but it is very inconvenient the baggage that comes with believing Him. I won't accept it blindly and constantly ask God to prove His presence in my life. And I am glad to accept that and have to remain humble in knowing my place in the scheme of things.

I stand unconvinced that atheism will improve my life and existence. All the grand questions will still need answers. What will make me enjoy music, art, culture, relationships and nature without my God?
6 March at 15:57 · Like · 1

ES To clarify on my statement "'atheists see nothing intrinsically wrong with nuking the planet or raping babies", I am inferring that there is no eternal judgment or accountability for these actions, beyond our limited justice system, and perhaps the extermination of the human race, which in itself would be of no consequence.

Without a see-all justice system, justice extends only as far as what can be seen and recorded, and even then, you have to market your case and hope the judges are favourable.

By accident I'm saying that atheists are horrible people - occasionally they are, but as a generalisation that's obviously incorrect. On the other hand, it's not hard to see that the worst crooks in the world are more likely to be atheists than believing Christians (not Christians only by name, e.g. Kony). Let me know if you disagree with this.

Where Christianity becomes awkward, and this is me standing on my weak leg, is the idea of mercy. We believe that Hitler can come to a revelation of his sin, repent before God, accept Jesus as Lord of his life, and go to heaven. Wow. To many, that seems unjust, to others, the sacrifice of Jesus and His mercy extended to those who receive it is the most beautiful thing ever. I guess we can only appreciate mercy when we accept that at a fundamental level we've all fallen short and need it.
7 March at 06:51 · Like

ES At the end of the day, as an atheist, you're basically saying: if I rape a baby and don't get caught, there's nothing wrong. Wrong is a made-up word. The baby might get injured or emotionally scarred, but there is nothing wrong with that either. Matter floats around, collides with other matter and changes form. That's all.

Sure, it's a horrible example, and I'll take it as a certainty that the example doesn't relate to you, but you have to pick out extreme examples in order to get the big picture. You have to look at the Crusades, Kony and Catholic priest molestation and ask questions about Christianity, and I have to look at the ridiculousness of the big bang creating matter from nothing, the miniscule chance of evolution and the flawed morality of atheism.

Even so, there could be no God. It's a technical possibility and I accept that. It's a heavy thought.
7 March at 07:01 · Like

ES Actually I take that back, matter being created from nothing is still non-feasible
7 March at 07:04 · Like

SW You still need to understand the difference between Theism, Atheism and Anti-theism.
about an hour ago · Like

SW "At the end of the day, as an atheist, you're basically saying: if I rape a baby and don't get caught, there's nothing wrong. Wrong is a made-up word. The baby might get injured or emotionally scarred, but there is nothing wrong with that either. Matter floats around, collides with other matter and changes form. That's all."
about an hour ago · Like

SW The statement is incorrect.
about an hour ago · Like

SW As an atheist I am saying only one thing......'I have no belief in gods'
about an hour ago · Like

SW As a human being with a moral compass, I'll wager, every bit as good as yours I would say that raping babies is utterly abhorrent.
about an hour ago · Like

SW I would also say that my moral compass might even be better than yours. I don't need gods to make me 'good'. I don't need threats over eternal damnation to make me a good person.
about an hour ago · Like

SW I find it scary to think that a person might say 'without my god I'd be a baby rapist'...........what does that say about them....
about an hour ago · Like

MS Fair enough, but where do you get your moral compass from?
about an hour ago · Like

SW It's called being human. All you need is Empathy. It's not complicated.
about an hour ago · Like

MS I understand. But then moral compasses are something that evolve. According to the culture of the day. A hundred years ago homosexuality was a capital offense, now they drive culture, media and society.
about an hour ago · Like

SW So what, homosexuality is hardly a new thing. Just attitudes have changed towards it. I think you'll find the basic tenet of 'Do unto others as you would have done to you' is about all you need to get on just fine. Also, attitude and understanding of things changes..........but murdering people and raping babies has always been morally repugnant.
about an hour ago · Like

MS Hey, I found the raping babies analogy a bit over the top myself, that is more an argument for a humanist, someone who effectively makes man the god. You have made it clear that is not your view, so we leave that aside.
about an hour ago · Like

SW You don't need religion to have morals. If you can't determine right from wrong, then you lack empathy, not religion.
about an hour ago · Like

MS Where do we get empathy from or even a conscience at that? One of evolution's great 'unexplainables'.
about an hour ago · Like

SW By the way, don't forget evolution is an observable fact.
about an hour ago · Like

MS Which evolution are you talking about?
58 minutes ago · Like

SW And, empathy........that's natural selection at work right there. We are co-operative animals. It has long been our best model for survival. Soft, pink, tasty things don't last long on their own. Those predisposed to emapthic behaviour have a much better collective.....survival model than others.
58 minutes ago · Like

SW The process of evolution and natural selection. Which are in fact two very different things in themselves.
57 minutes ago · Like

MS So give me an example of observable evolution.
56 minutes ago · Like

SW Viruses
56 minutes ago · Like

MS Micro evolution, they were viruses, they are still viruses, with changed abilities.
55 minutes ago · Like

SW But there are many others. Google up 'ring species' Make sure you understand the difference between species and genus though.
55 minutes ago · Like

SW And by the way......evolution is by definition 'micro'
54 minutes ago · Like

SW we could do this for hours......but, there are more important things to discuss so, I'm happy to move on.
53 minutes ago · Like

SW I wanted to ask again, what you think of people following other religions and Gods who also have their own conversations, miricles and healings and from their Gods and, importantly, how you relate those to your experiences?
51 minutes ago · Like

MS I realize that, and trying to defend evolution as observable science is an impossible task, I wouldn't let you get away that easily. But fine, let's move on.
51 minutes ago · Like

SW *miracles* sorry
51 minutes ago · Like

MS Good question, can you be more specific, in other words example of a person of another religion with that experience?
48 minutes ago · Like

MS I think the theory would still be the same. If a god is who he says he is and I have the chance to "tap into his power" then why not. The difference then would be down to whether it actually happens or not. I am not aware of it happening in other religions as it does with Christianity. That would come to observable occasions I suppose. As Eric said, why our God doesn't do it when we want it most is a mystery, but I know people and of people who have seen it happen and happen regularly.
41 minutes ago · Like

MS I would hazard a guess and say Muslims don't experience many miracles, if any...
40 minutes ago · Like

SW Why do you need that? All the adherents to mainstream religions claim a supernatural god that they have a relationship with. I'm not going to start typing out the Islamic, Jewish, Sikh etc......miracles. One because I don't know them all and two......my fingers
40 minutes ago · Like

MS I ask simply because there is theory and there is practice. The Bible says "we will overcome the enemy by the blood of the lamb (the death and resurrection of Jesus) and the word of our testimony (our actual experiences of God, such as my uncle's). To my knowledge all those religions don't experience the miracles we do. Some may, I have no idea, that is why I ask.
35 minutes ago · Like

MS And by miracles I mean, the impossible. Is it is easy to explain away "good fortune events" and right place at the right time. We put God and god's on trial all the time, so the question is when does He answer or perform miracles. I have read a lot of ...See More
23 minutes ago · Like

SW So, how would you explain the healings, miracles, communications with God and personal experience of believers of other religions.
16 minutes ago · Like

MS Sadly I would say the vast majority of religious people of all types don't expect much of God. I do. Before yourself and other people who don't believe I put my life up as an example or test. If all you see is empty religion, being pious or argumentative, then you are absolutely justified in your world view. The only religion that offers me these miracles is Christianity. If you see real observable examples, then hopefully you would understand.
13 minutes ago · Like

MS I don't know of any healings, miracles or contact from God in other religions. Partly because I just don't follow them, and mostly because they just aren't part of their religions, like ours.
8 minutes ago · Like

SW But, they're there and claimed and as real and heartfelt.
5 minutes ago · Like

SW Are they deceived about their Gods?
5 minutes ago · Like

MS I would say they are deceived of course, as I am biased But I would love to know of one. I am curious.
A few seconds ago · Like

MS Do you know of the Bible story of Elijah on Mt Carmel? I miracle competition between the local religions and the god of the bible. I understand if you don't want to use that as an example, as we are heading into theology.
7 minutes ago · Like

BH interesting discussion. remember, the Devil is the master Deceiver of man and can ALSO perform miracles. I agree with Michael, they are being decieved, but its by the Devil or his colleagues. Will continue reading, just dont let this get Heated... no one has ever won a religious friendly debate, and i use the term "friendly" rather loosely.
7 minutes ago · Like
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10-03-2014, 08:46 AM
RE: Please, I need some help with this discussion.
SW Thankfully, I don't think either Michael or I are about 'winning'
2 minutes ago · Like

SW One of the main reasons we have evolved to be as awesome and terrifying as we have done.....well....first brain expansion due to diet and then an increasingly sophisticated language ability.........I'm just trying to say that 'It's good to talk'
A few seconds ago · Like
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10-03-2014, 12:43 PM
RE: Please, I need some help with this discussion.
I'm well aware that I'm letting loads of daft stuff slide. My intention is to gently manoeuvre the topic to faith.
If I get opportunities to come back and pick up on some of the stuff later then so much the better......letting them generate enough rope to metaphorically hang themselves.
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10-03-2014, 05:44 PM
RE: Please, I need some help with this discussion.
You can maneuver to faith through the source of morality. Explain Christianity became more morally sound through secular atheist pressure in the 17th and 18th century during the enlightenment. Angle it that only secular pressure or revelation are the only possible explanations for improved religious behaviour. One can be proven, the other is anecdotal at best therefore can only be attested to through faith. Just a thought Smile

A man blames his bad childhood on leprechauns. He claims they don't exist, but yet still says without a doubt that they stole all his money and then killed his parents. That's why he became Leprechaun-Man

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