Why I Believe
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08-04-2017, 06:46 AM
RE: Why I Believe
Christians are generally very ignorant about the actual origins of their bible. And their preachers are in no hurry to tell them. The more you study it objectively, the more suspicious the whole thing is.

The correct way to look at it is a kind of social commentary, with a bit of wildly exaggerated history in there.

But yes, religion is often essentially a political tool. It's a great way to get people to do what you want.

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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08-04-2017, 07:04 AM
RE: Why I Believe
(07-04-2017 11:26 PM)A_Thinking_Theist Wrote:  For what it's worth it seems Carl Sagan is attributed with the quote "The absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence" referencing his Cosmos.

As a general maxim that is true but when evidence would be expected the maxim fails. If I take you to a vacant lot and tell you it is my new house you would think I was insane to claim that just because there's an absence of evidence for a house on the lot there's no reason to take that as evidence that the house isn't on the lot.

Christians make specific claims about when and where they see their god acting and yet all I ever see is a vacant lot.

Quote:I believe that rereading my post you will see I did not make the claim that there is a deity. I did state that I was seeking answers as to the thinking processes using logic and reason as to how atheists support their position that there is no God and how they justify that claim.

Some atheists make that claim. My claim is only that I see no good reason to believe that any god exists, especially specific gods like Zeus, Thor, and Yahweh. I justify that on the lack of evidence to support their existence and the null hypothesis.

Quote:I will state I do believe as a theist in the Creator God and that to do so is not irrational nor without grounds for belief.

Well, that's the rub. Please elaborate on the grounds for belief. If there are rational reasons to believe then it should be possible to explain them. Simply saying that your belief is rational is an unsupported assertion.

Quote:I also acknowledge mordant did an excellence job of rationalizing the claim "deities do not exist" while lacking the ability of "proof" of the same.

Proof is for mathematics and alcohol... I'll settle for demonstrable, testable evidence that support the claim.

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08-04-2017, 07:04 AM (This post was last modified: 08-04-2017 07:12 AM by TheInquisition.)
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 05:19 AM)SeaJay Wrote:  
(08-04-2017 03:50 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  

My mind is a little bit blown by the video.

I mean, isn't that probably the greatest evidence that Monotheistic Christianity has been constructed by the ancients? That Yahweh was just one of multiple gods and not even the main god? I'm not sure what to do with this information.

I mean, at first glance this seems like very strong evidence that it was all constructed purely for political reasons, for controlling the masses. Surely if this is true, then there is no point trying to figure out if the behemoth in Job was a sauropod, or if the Hebrews believed the sky to be a hard dome (snowglobe theory), or that there's no resurrection mentioned in the first gospel of Mark. Does it?

The very first verse in Genesis, the bible, and everything after it is, all built on a religion created by Israel and Judah's political history?

Can't be as easy as that. Why aren't knowledgeable Christian academic certified scholars mentioning this? For that matter, why are no knowledgeable Christians talking about this, why not the media?

This info is out there, it's too easy for anyone to look at and comment on. I'm not saying it's not true (or true), the point I'm trying to get across is that the content seems to me to be extremely damaging to the claims of Judaism, Christianity, and the rest, and it is so easily accessible I cannot believe nobody hasn't rebuffed this. But then, how would you do that?

What's the catch, what are Christians saying about this?

Here's what answers in Genesis says:

The Documentary Hypothesis: Moses, Genesis, and the JEDP?

The attack on the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch is nothing less than an attack on the veracity, reliability, and authority of the Word of Almighty God. Christians should believe God, rather than the fallible, sinful skeptics inside and outside the Church who, in their intellectual arrogance, are consciously or unconsciously trying to undermine the Word so that they can justify in their own minds (but not before God) their rebellion against God.

When you read the entire article, you'll get down to the "Fallacious Reasoning of The Skeptics" and what is the first thing they mention?

1. They assumed their conclusion. They assumed that the Bible is not a supernatural revelation from God and then manipulated the biblical text to arrive at that conclusion. They were implicitly deistic or atheistic in their thinking.


They literally described themselves perfectly! Facepalm

They demand that you read the bible with bias- The bible MUST be a supernatural revelation from god! There is no other assumption you can have about it.

I see it as you are asking questions that the apologists don't like and all they have is a demand that you accept their biases.

Here's another example where they don't really have an explanation for why the pyramids are undamaged by the alleged Noahtic flood in 2350 B.C. even though the pyramids were built in 2560 B.C. They shouldn't even be there, but there they are in defiance of the myth.

All they can do is say that the pyramids are "obviously" built after the flood. Facepalm

Were the Pyramids Built Before the Flood?

They can't accept the dates for the construction of the pyramids and say in the article that the dates for the pyramid construction are based on a list of Pharoahs from the historian Manetho from 200 B.C. and Manetho exaggerated the length of the reigns of some of the Pharoahs.

This is a lie! They used radiocarbon dating to date the pyramids:

Radiocarbon dating verifies ancient Egypt's history

It's also very telling how the article just mentions the pyramids of Giza, but didn't mention the older step pyramid of Djoser which has been precisely dated from 2691 to roughly 2625 BC.

So when you do enough digging, you'll find the apologists are a rotten bunch of liars that not only lie by what they say, but lie by what they DON'T say or choose to ignore.

This is a pattern you will find that repeats itself when you do enough digging.

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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08-04-2017, 07:09 AM
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 07:04 AM)TheInquisition Wrote:  So when you do enough digging, you'll find the apologists are a rotten bunch of liars that not only lie by what they say, but lie by what they DON'T say or choose to ignore.

This is a pattern you will find that repeats itself when you do enough digging.

I “dig” your puns. Thumbsup

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
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08-04-2017, 07:15 AM
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 07:09 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  
(08-04-2017 07:04 AM)TheInquisition Wrote:  So when you do enough digging, you'll find the apologists are a rotten bunch of liars that not only lie by what they say, but lie by what they DON'T say or choose to ignore.

This is a pattern you will find that repeats itself when you do enough digging.

I “dig” your puns. Thumbsup

Haha! I'll pretend that I was being witty and did that intentionally. Dodgy

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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08-04-2017, 07:18 AM
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 05:19 AM)SeaJay Wrote:  I mean, isn't that probably the greatest evidence that Monotheistic Christianity has been constructed by the ancients? That Yahweh was just one of multiple gods and not even the main god? I'm not sure what to do with this information.

Let it soak in for a bit. The trail of belief from polytheism to henotheism to monotheism is very evident and traces of it can be found throughout the bible if you know any of the history behind the stories.

Quote:I mean, at first glance this seems like very strong evidence that it was all constructed purely for political reasons, for controlling the masses.

I wouldn't go that far; some of it was surely written and disseminated by people who really believed and who did not have ulterior motives. Unfortunately, I do think they were duped by people who did have political motivations.

Quote: Surely if this is true, then there is no point trying to figure out if the behemoth in Job was a sauropod, or if the Hebrews believed the sky to be a hard dome (snowglobe theory), or that there's no resurrection mentioned in the first gospel of Mark. Does it?

Well, yeah. The stories are interesting from a cultural/societal viewpoint to see how apocalyptic Judaism created multiple splinter groups from which Christianity was born. It's just that there's no reason to assume there was anything more than a purely human process going on.

Quote:The very first verse in Genesis, the bible, and everything after it is, all built on a religion created by Israel and Judah's political history?

Yep. The religion and the politics were heavily intertwined and fed each other.

Quote:Can't be as easy as that. Why aren't knowledgeable Christian academic certified scholars mentioning this? For that matter, why are no knowledgeable Christians talking about this, why not the media?

Some believe anyway and see the hand of god behind all the machinations
Some want to keep their job
Some want to manipulate people for their own political gains
etc

Quote:This info is out there, it's too easy for anyone to look at and comment on. I'm not saying it's not true (or true), the point I'm trying to get across is that the content seems to me to be extremely damaging to the claims of Judaism, Christianity, and the rest, and it is so easily accessible I cannot believe nobody hasn't rebuffed this. But then, how would you do that?

As you say it is out there. They don't rebuff it because they don't need to. Most believers do not know any of it and will never look at it. Some who do will reject it because it conflicts with what they believe and they put comfort ahead of truth. Some will absorb it and they'll be called tools of Satan and believers will be afraid to listen because it's the devil tempting them.

The human ability to embrace compartmentalization is astounding.

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08-04-2017, 07:34 AM (This post was last modified: 08-04-2017 07:59 AM by SYZ.)
RE: Why I Believe
(05-04-2017 07:58 AM)SeaJay Wrote:  
(05-04-2017 07:37 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  Why are all the others fictitious? Why is your god real?
I just know they are...

This amounts to a non-answer, and an all too easy cop-out. You need to explain precisely how you can "just know". People don't just know things—they have to be taught; they have to carry out their own due diligence; they have to discover empirical evidence for their beliefs; their beliefs can be replicated or their results need to be observable.

Another atheist site says of belief in gods:

If you believe in God, you have chosen to reject Allah, Vishnu, Buddha, Waheguru and all of the thousands of other gods that other people worship today. It is quite likely that you rejected these other gods without ever looking into their religions. You simply absorbed the dominant faith in your home or in the society you grew up in.

In the same way, the followers of all these other religions have chosen to reject your God. You think their gods are imaginary, and they think your God is imaginary.

In other words, each religious person on earth today arbitrarily rejects thousands of gods as imaginary, many of which he/she has never even heard of, and arbitrarily chooses to "believe" in only one of them.


I, as an atheist, simply reject the existence of one god more than you do.

(05-04-2017 07:58 AM)SeaJay Wrote:  One thing though, I don't believe we have immortal souls, only that in the resurrection, the body is turned into something immortal...

I'm afraid this doesn't mean anything in practical terms, nor does it answer any questions about resurrection and/or immortality. Once again, you just state your personal opinion as though it's fact, but without any supporting evidence. It seems you reject an immortal soul (whatever that is?) but accept an immortal "something". What's that something?

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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08-04-2017, 08:09 AM (This post was last modified: 08-04-2017 08:16 AM by SeaJay.)
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 05:47 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  See? That's checking the foundation from outside the house.
After watching this rebuttal video I'm not sure what to think:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbmDO3-0GtU

Which seems to destroy the Evid3nc3 video. Here's the main points:

3:06 Karen Armstrong is not a scholar, she's a layman at best and even sceptical scholars have challenged her. Evid3nc3 doesn't cite anyone else throughout the video

3:36 Nobody has heard of any scholars who take Karen Armstrong seriously

5:03 Just because the form of how we think of God philosophically, didn't first appear as we think of Him in this time does not mean He didn't exist earlier

7:03 Enuma Elish: There was a little prayer found in am amulet that predated this time period. This is referring to a single god, how can you say this started at this time if it has already been written down? Not sure what he is saying here.

8:26 Evid3nc3 says at 1750 the belief system was not monotheistic but they reply with 'say so what?' The bible admits Abraham worshipped many gods. God calls Abraham out of that to be monotheistic

9:20 How does Evid3nc3 know the Babylonian ideas about what the earth and sky looked like (domes earth etc) were edited into Genesis and Isaiah? He never says what parts were already there and which were edited in later.

11:06 Apparently the bible admits the Jews and Christians took pagan ideas and made them so they could use them. It's not an issue apparently it was known to be done. It was what they did back in the day.

15:00 Still no archaeological evidence of Yahweh. You can't have the god of Israel without Israel being there and they were in Egypt so Yahweh wouldn't be there.

18:30 Canaanites worshipped 'El', Israelites stole the worship of 'El'. No, they just took the title 'El' as it was a generic title.

23:52 Abraham started to focus on this one god, and then with the next breath he says they are polytheist?

29:05 There's a documentary called 'Patterns of Evidence: The Exodus'. Points out a lot of evidence for the exodus. They also argue the reason we don't find a lot of evidence is they are dating the exodus to the wrong kingdom. They argue it is dated to the middle kingdom not the new kingdom as traditionally dated. The claim there's no evidence has been challenged and it's not really debated now.

30:20 If there is no record of Israelites being in Egypt, that's because the Egyptians were known for deleting embarrassing moments from their history. This date comes from an non Christian Egyptologist's book (no info given)

32:20 The accusatory claim is that again Canaanites went after other gods, but this is admitted in the Book of Judges.

33:00 to 40:?? Apparently, no issues here as the bible admits to the Israelites worshipping other gods for differing reasons.

42:30 Deuteronomy being a fake? Apparently there's a big debate about this and it's not easily dismissed as fake. Not sure that that says about it though.

45:00 King Josiah implements aggressive reforms to promote the official worship of Yahweh as the official religion of Judah.

46:35 "Reformers also rewrote Israelite history." Guy says, if they rewrote history, how does Evid3nc3 know they were polytheists prior to this?

49:01 "Where in the bible does it say Joshua was commanded to commit genocide? They just say 'oh well he was told to take over the land of the Canaanites'. Yes, because they were sinful and performing child sacrifice and other terrible things. Never because of a 'race' were they attacked."

55:00 "How can we worship Yahweh in a foreign land?" Implying Yahweh was just a god of Judea." They reply no, they couldn't worship Yahweh because they were out of 'covenant' with Yahweh. Once taken out of the land they were taken out of the covenant. It wasn't a geographical problem, it was because they never had the temple anymore to worship in.

1:00:00 All this is true because Karen Armstrong said so. There are good responses to this by Jewish scholars.

I think what they are saying is yes, what's the problem here, the bible even admits to all this, and that Karen Armstrong is out there on her own and nobody agrees with her.

Just want to point out that none of the above are necessarily my own views, I'm just imparting what the hosts said.

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08-04-2017, 08:36 AM (This post was last modified: 08-04-2017 11:58 AM by kim.)
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 05:19 AM)SeaJay Wrote:  
(08-04-2017 03:50 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  

My mind is a little bit blown by the video.

I mean, isn't that probably the greatest evidence that Monotheistic Christianity has been constructed by the ancients? That Yahweh was just one of multiple gods and not even the main god? I'm not sure what to do with this information.

I mean, at first glance this seems like very strong evidence that it was all constructed purely for political reasons, for controlling the masses. Surely if this is true, then there is no point trying to figure out if the behemoth in Job was a sauropod, or if the Hebrews believed the sky to be a hard dome (snowglobe theory), or that there's no resurrection mentioned in the first gospel of Mark. Does it?

The very first verse in Genesis, the bible, and everything after it is, all built on a religion created by Israel and Judah's political history?

Can't be as easy as that. Why aren't knowledgeable Christian academic certified scholars mentioning this? For that matter, why are no knowledgeable Christians talking about this, why not the media?

This info is out there, it's too easy for anyone to look at and comment on. I'm not saying it's not true (or true), the point I'm trying to get across is that the content seems to me to be extremely damaging to the claims of Judaism, Christianity, and the rest, and it is so easily accessible I cannot believe nobody hasn't rebuffed this. But then, how would you do that?

What's the catch, what are Christians saying about this?

It is all out there. It has always been out there.

You are a Christian and apparently rely on those you referred to as Christian academic certified scholars and yet, no one "told you". Odd, considering you have been told many, many miles of stories that have you chasing "factual" details of a myth.

But then, it's not just any myth - it is designed specifically to control masses of people by instructing them to manipulate theirselves.

Think about this.
You have been instructed all your life to do as you are told, while at the same time, you have been instructed to manipulate yourself.

This is what traps you in the cycle of fear.
BUT there is a way out.

Only you control you.
Heart
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08-04-2017, 09:32 AM
RE: Why I Believe
(08-04-2017 12:29 AM)SeaJay Wrote:  
(07-04-2017 04:06 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  Good attempt. Try this. Read Genesis 2 and 3 again and as yourself:
- What does God tell Adam and Eve will happen if the eat the forbidden fruit?
- What does the Serpent tell Eve will happen?
- What actually happens?
- Who lied and who told the truth?
- What is the reason that God gives at the end of chapter 3 for expelling Adam and Eve from Eden?
[Not preaching, just giving my thoughts]The way I see this is, before they ate the fruit they were immortal and couldn't die. When they ate the fruit they stopped being immortal and did eventually die. I think the proposition that they should have died instantly (or at least that day) is flawed.

That doesn't hold up well:
- In Genesis 3:22 God is clearly concerned that Adam will become immortal, meaning that he is not.
- Can you think of another single instance in the Bible where God tells somebody that they'll die if they do something and then they go on living for hundreds of years? The biblical God is big on smiting and pillars of salt, not metaphor.

Besides, are we supposed to read this literally or take somebody's interpretation of it? The former is scripture, the latter is a mortal's opinion. Interpretation of scripture is not Divinely inspired.

---
Flesh and blood of a dead star, slain in the apocalypse of supernova, resurrected by four billion years of continuous autocatalytic reaction and crowned with the emergent property of sentience in the dream that the universe might one day understand itself.
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