Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
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17-08-2014, 09:35 AM (This post was last modified: 17-08-2014 10:02 AM by Adrianime.)
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
I don't claim that what I "know" is undeniable, universal truth. This is because, as a mortal imperfect species, it is impossible to obtain complete and perfect knowledge of all things. So instead of that we go by what we can apparently learn by observing consistency and creating "knowledge" that is in line with reality behaving consistently. There is also the issue that knowledge, as held by the individual, is entirely subjective. It is entirely possible, and happens often, to "know" things that are not true.

I like the school of that that defines "knowledge" as "belief with certainty". Since knowledge is not equivalent to truth.

To get to the point...As much as I feel I know that the sun rises in the morning due to the rotation of the earth, I feel I know there is no such thing as magic (actually I might be slightly more confident in the latter). Every definition of god I have ever seen falls under the category of "being with great (or perfect) magical powers" (I would consider immortality itself a great magical power). So yes, ever since I can remember, I have been a gnostic (or strong) atheist.

To add to that, I know many atheists say this, but I'll say it here... I don't consider the god story any more convincing than I consider the giant fire breathing dragon story, or the fairy story, or the psychic story. And I really mean it. I honestly do not see why I am able to freely say, "fairies do not exist", while I should take special care to not say the same about gods. To me they are the same type of magical, un-falsifiable, lacking-in evidence or reason claims.

So......yeah. Gods don't exist.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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17-08-2014, 09:39 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
Not to mention that god claims generally directly contradict our current understanding of reality (physics, especially).

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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17-08-2014, 09:49 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
What exactly is this gawd thingy of which you speak ?

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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17-08-2014, 10:11 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
(17-08-2014 09:35 AM)Adrianime Wrote:  I don't claim that what I "know" is undeniable, universal truth. This is because, as a mortal imperfect species, it is impossible to obtain complete and perfect knowledge of all things. So instead of that we go by what we can apparently learn by observing consistency and creating "knowledge" that is in line with reality behaving consistently. There is also the issue that knowledge, as held by the individual, is entirely subjective. It is entirely possible, and happens often, to "know" things that are not true.

I like the school of that that defines "knowledge" as "belief with certainty". Since knowledge is not equivalent to truth.

To get to the point...As much as I feel I know that the sun rises in the morning due to the rotation of the earth, I feel I know there is no such thing as magic (actually I might be slightly more confident in the latter). Every definition of god I have ever seen falls under the category of "being with great, or perfect magical powers" (I would consider immortality itself a great magical power). So yes, ever since I can remember, I have been a gnostic (or strong) atheist.

To add to that, I know many atheists say this, but I'll say it here... I don't consider the god story any more convincing than I consider the giant fire breathing dragon story, or the fairy story, or the psychic story. And I really mean it. I honestly do not see why I am able to freely say, "fairies do not exist", while I should take special care to not say the same about gods. To me they are the same type of magical, un-falsifiable, lacking-in evidence or reason claims.

So......yeah. Gods don't exist.

Still missing the point.

God claims are a product of antiquity in an age of scientific ignorance. We have much better tools to measure the nature of reality than the wishful thinking and imaginations of humans. It is precisely because humans are flawed that you do not trust mere traditions or religion. If our species never questioned social norms our species never would have left the caves.

Once you know the age of the earth, the age of the universe and it's size, the thought of "all this" being put here for humans, becomes absurd. We are in a ride, we are finite, like the earth and sun. It should not frighten anyone in accepting that reality anymore than one mourns a dead leaf rotting on the ground.

There have been 5 mass extinctions on our planet since the start of evolution. Humans are highly unlikely to survive anything like what killed the dinosaurs. 99% of prior species that once lived are now extinct. And just like humans, the planet's core will go cold and all life will go extinct, and the sun will expand and die and the universe will go on with no record of our existence.

I find it very demeaning to modern knowledge in this day an age of scientific knowledge to pretend that the mere imaginations of willfully ignorant humans who think a comforting lie constitutes reality.

No comic book or fictional sky hero can come close to explaining the scientific nature of reality. It is nothing short of the child refusing to grow up.

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17-08-2014, 10:14 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
Brian, I'm a little confused. Aren't you just agreeing with me?

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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17-08-2014, 10:49 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: god's existence which is facts-based?
(17-08-2014 10:11 AM)Brian37 Wrote:  No comic book or fictional sky hero can come close to explaining the scientific nature of reality. It is nothing short of the child refusing to grow up.

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Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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17-08-2014, 11:20 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
(17-08-2014 08:34 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  Yes, I know someone will respond to this post by inventing a toaster-god. You're all freaks.

He may not be a deity, but he is a god among toasters.

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17-08-2014, 11:25 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-ba
Thanks people, lots of interesting posts here, I'll try and respond directly to points I don't cover below.

Firstly the people who are claiming weak or agnostic atheist positions, or refuting instances of "gods" on a per-deity basis, that all sounds quite reasonable, although I was aiming this thread more specifically at strong atheists.

Secondly, a few people have said they are strong atheists because they actually define god in a way that makes god's existence impossible. This does seem to leave the consistency of your position nicely intact, but it does make me wonder - why do you even do it? What value does it do to identify a non-existent something and then assert disbelief in it?

Re. the debate over wether personal experience is necessarily separate from fact, let's perhaps have that debate on my other thread which is complementary to this thread (I've already started debating it there): Theists: do any of you have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?

Re the issue of Godel's incompleteness theorem providing a mathematical proof that theories on Intelligent Design are meaningless, slightly surprised to hear ambivalence towards that idea. I think it's a short sharp rebuttal of a quality that engaging with ID on it's own terms (e.g. debating the "evidence") completely fails to provide. Perhaps I'll start a separate thread on that idea as suggested by someone.

Finally, a few people have questioned the term "negative truth claim", when I'm using that concept, this is what I mean by it.

Oh and finally finally - a few people have identified as "gnostic atheists", can someone explain what this term means?

By my understanding of "gnostic", a gnostic atheist would either be someone who has directly experienced the absolute but chooses to frame the experience without using the "god" concept, or alternatively someone who has directly experienced the lack of any sort of absolute e.g. is a gnostic strong atheist (not quite sure how that would even work!)

Do either of these reflect people's positions, or is there some other possible understanding of the term I have missed?

Phil
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17-08-2014, 11:30 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
(17-08-2014 11:25 AM)phil.a Wrote:  Thanks people, lots of interesting posts here, I'll try and respond directly to points I don't cover below.

Firstly the people who are claiming weak or agnostic atheist positions, or refuting instances of "gods" on a per-deity basis, that all sounds quite reasonable, although I was aiming this thread more specifically at strong atheists.

Secondly, a few people have said they are strong atheists because they actually define god in a way that makes god's existence impossible. This does seem to leave the consistency of your position nicely intact, but it does make me wonder - why do you even do it? What value does it do to identify a non-existent something and then assert disbelief in it?

Re. the debate over wether personal experience is necessarily separate from fact, let's perhaps have that debate on my other thread which is complementary to this thread (I've already started debating it there): Theists: do any of you have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?

Re the issue of Godel's incompleteness theorem providing a mathematical proof that theories on Intelligent Design are meaningless, slightly surprised to hear ambivalence towards that idea. I think it's a short sharp rebuttal of a quality that engaging with ID on it's own terms (e.g. debating the "evidence") completely fails to provide. Perhaps I'll start a separate thread on that idea as suggested by someone.

Finally, a few people have questioned the term "negative truth claim", when I'm using that concept, this is what I mean by it.

Oh and finally finally - a few people have identified as "gnostic atheists", can someone explain what this term means?

By my understanding of "gnostic", a gnostic atheist would either be someone who has directly experienced the absolute but chooses to frame the experience without using the "god" concept, or alternatively someone who has directly experienced the lack of any sort of absolute e.g. is a gnostic strong atheist (not quite sure how that would even work!)

Do either of these reflect people's positions, or is there some other possible understanding of the term I have missed?

Phil

Around these parts, 'gnostic atheist' is one who claims certainty of the non-existence of gods or claims he/she can prove it.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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17-08-2014, 11:34 AM
RE: Strong Atheists: do any of u have a position on god's existence which is facts-based?
(17-08-2014 11:25 AM)phil.a Wrote:  Secondly, a few people have said they are strong atheists because they actually define god in a way that makes god's existence impossible. This does seem to leave the consistency of your position nicely intact, but it does make me wonder - why do you even do it? What value does it do to identify a non-existent something and then assert disbelief in it?

I defined a being that, if it existed, would be perfect. As it turned out, such a thing is also impossible. Funny how that worked out. Regardless, any god (using others' definitions now) that appeals to the supernatural is impossible, as per the definition of "supernatural". The ones who don't are irrelevant.
Also:
What value does it do to identify a non-existent something and then assert belief in it?

(17-08-2014 11:25 AM)phil.a Wrote:  Oh and finally finally - a few people have identified as "gnostic atheists", can someone explain what this term means?

By my understanding of "gnostic", a gnostic atheist would either be someone who has directly experienced the absolute but chooses to frame the experience without using the "god" concept, or alternatively someone who has directly experienced the lack of any sort of absolute e.g. is a gnostic strong atheist (not quite sure how that would even work!)

Do either of these reflect people's positions, or is there some other possible understanding of the term I have missed?

Gnosticism refers to knowledge. Therefore, a gnostic atheist is someone who knows (is sure) that there is/are no god(s).

The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
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