Why I bother....
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14-10-2014, 07:21 AM
RE: Why I bother....
If one of us posted in a christian forum we would probably bet banned immediately.

Point one, if god knows and does nothing god is either, indifferent, lazy, not omnipotent or does not exist. Your point is bad reasoning and an odd justification for an all powerful being that wants us to be happy but allows us to suffer.

Point two, see point one

Point three, inserting god into all the things we do not know or understand is not a valid rationalization for the existence of a supreme being. Sometimes "we do not know" is the answer.
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14-10-2014, 07:21 AM
RE: Why I bother....
(14-10-2014 06:52 AM)Tsukho Wrote:  Good gravy,

I chummed the waters and the sharks have arrived. It amazes me that the atheistic claim to superior logic and morality always breaks down to sarcasm and name calling. However, I'm sure if one of you posted on a Christian forum, you might get the same. *Sigh, our human condition....*

[WillHop, you said: Are you saying your god isn't smart enough to see Satan's tactics in advance and is incapable of defending against them?] The Bible teaches God is omniscient. He was well aware of Satan and all of history. God doesn't think like us. If we were omniscient, we would simply avoid all the bad things and live in Nirvana. God has different purposes. Allowing Satan to do what he does is part of that.

[You said: Are you saying your god can't defeat Satan?] God allows Satan to do what he does. Popular culture envisions a war between God and Satan, but that's not what the Bible teaches. God is omnipotent. There is no war. God allows Satan to continue for a span of time. True, Satan wars against us, but the idea of him warring against God is like flea warring against a mountain. There is no fight.

[That he can't take the ONE story that is supposed to be the greatest one ever told and change it enough to not replicate the dozens of other hero/savior tales?] Perhaps you missed the point of my post. God and his work predates all of human history. His story is not the copy, it's the original. Satan and mankind's versions are the replications.

How do you personally know the thinking process of this god character? "god doesn't think like us" - you are correct since humans would not allow suffering and actually do their best to eliminate its cause. We have compasion and empathy, which is something all "loving gods" seem to be missing. It appears you need a boat load of excuses to make your myth somewhat acceptable.

“Truth does not demand belief. Scientists do not join hands every Sunday, singing, yes, gravity is real! I will have faith! I will be strong! I believe in my heart that what goes up, up, up, must come down, down, down. Amen! If they did, we would think they were pretty insecure about it.”
— Dan Barker —
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14-10-2014, 07:27 AM
RE: Why I bother....
GWOG,

Thank you for the invitation to dialogue. There are, however, wayyyy to many points in your post to address.

My original intent was not to open up a can of worms, but simply say there is another way of interpreting the myths. I'm not saying you have to agree with it and believe it's true any more than I believe and and agree with all that you've said.
Perhaps you might agree, that if the God of the Bible is true, then it's logical that his original plan and intention would be repackaged, watered down, and distorted by men and Satan throughout our history. You're probably aware of the communication game in which a whispered phrase works it's way around a circle of people to be revealed at the other end as distorted and incomplete. The distortions do not mean that an original and true message did not exist in the first place.

God devised the original message. We distorted it.

As for the rest of your post, there are a number of points to which I don't have immediate answers. I'll never have all the answers. I don't know everything. But then again, neither do you. I hope you would also agree that secular humanism and evolution have lots of unanswered question, too. Evolution is a theory, not a law. It's the just the next best thing around if you don't believe in God.

You are obviously read up on a number of theories about the the Bible. Historical researchers have different theories on many historical events. I suspect we would end up in an argument about this historian's research versus that historian's research.

I can't prove God to you any more than you can prove no God to me. Based on my research and my experiences, I believe he does exists. Perhaps based on yours, you disagree.
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14-10-2014, 07:35 AM
RE: Why I bother....
here we go. I can see the storm brewing.


Popcorn


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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14-10-2014, 07:47 AM
RE: Why I bother....
Timber1025,

Just as you get to know the character of family, friends and co-workers, you can get to know the character of God. It involves reading the Bible and trying to spend time with him. (Yes, if God is real, then you can get to know him and communicate with him.) In this way you can get to know some about him. An analogy would be that my 3-year old knows some about my character. He knows I love him and I have his best interest in heart. However, he can't fathom all of my purposes and reasons. Some stuff he knows, the rest he surmises. The Bible straight-out says we are made in his image, but we don't think like him.

Don't get sanctimonious about suffering. It's not God's fault that happens, it's ours. We messed up. And humans would not allow suffering? Please, humans are the cause of almost all suffering. Just because God does not eliminate all human suffering, that doesn't mean he doesn't exists or doesn't love. Your children or mine might grow up to be mass murderers, but does that possibility cause us to have no children? No, we have them, teach them, let them go on their way and expect they will do the right thing.

And by the way, you use the words compassion and empathy as if they they are universal truths. Where does that fit in with evolution? Are they simply constructs for us to get along with each other? Do you decry a lion's lack of compassion in killing his young as you decry God's lack of compassion in not making the world a Nirvana? In evolution, having compassion is no more good than lack of compassion. In fact, there is no good or bad, there is only expediency and lack of expediency for a desired cause. So don't judge me with your constructs.

Thanks,
Tsukho.
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14-10-2014, 07:49 AM
RE: Why I bother....
Bows and Arrows,

That's funny. LOL. I hope for civility, good humor, and good conversation.

Do you think I'm being too optimistic?
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14-10-2014, 07:50 AM
RE: Why I bother....
(14-10-2014 07:27 AM)Tsukho Wrote:  I can't prove God.....

You might want to explore that a bit. Being a former religious person that statement took me on a path of study and enlightenment. Since you can already accept the fact you can not prove god to others, you might want to look at how you can justify god to yourself.

I know I took it out of context a little. I felt the rest was rationalization of your position.
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14-10-2014, 07:57 AM
RE: Why I bother....
(14-10-2014 07:47 AM)Tsukho Wrote:  Timber1025,

Just as you get to know the character of family, friends and co-workers, you can get to know the character of God. It involves reading the Bible and trying to spend time with him. (Yes, if God is real, then you can get to know him and communicate with him.) In this way you can get to know some about him. An analogy would be that my 3-year old knows some about my character. He knows I love him and I have his best interest in heart. However, he can't fathom all of my purposes and reasons. Some stuff he knows, the rest he surmises. The Bible straight-out says we are made in his image, but we don't think like him.

Don't get sanctimonious about suffering. It's not God's fault that happens, it's ours. We messed up. And humans would not allow suffering? Please, humans are the cause of almost all suffering. Just because God does not eliminate all human suffering, that doesn't mean he doesn't exists or doesn't love. Your children or mine might grow up to be mass murderers, but does that possibility cause us to have no children? No, we have them, teach them, let them go on their way and expect they will do the right thing.

And by the way, you use the words compassion and empathy as if they they are universal truths. Where does that fit in with evolution? Are they simply constructs for us to get along with each other? Do you decry a lion's lack of compassion in killing his young as you decry God's lack of compassion in not making the world a Nirvana? In evolution, having compassion is no more good than lack of compassion. In fact, there is no good or bad, there is only expediency and lack of expediency for a desired cause. So don't judge me with your constructs.

Thanks,
Tsukho.

To your last paragraph, there is actually an evolutionary explanation for how we developed altruism. It has to do with us beginning to live in groups and tribes. Taking care of our own (family, then tribe) is beneficial to the survival of our genes. With the rise of modern culture, that altruism gets extended to those from our own city, state, country, and even recognition of our universal humanity.

Atheism is the only way to truly be free from sin.
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14-10-2014, 07:57 AM (This post was last modified: 14-10-2014 08:13 AM by Zippo.)
RE: Why I bother....
(13-10-2014 03:24 PM)Tsukho Wrote:  Why I bother,

From one perspective, the previous myth argument seems to point to Jesus not being who he said he was. However, here are some other thoughts on the topic. Granted from an atheistic point of view, you have to suspend disbelief and accept some Biblical concepts. You're point is that the Jesus story is plagiarism, when in actuality, it's exactly the opposite.

Is Christianity based on previous myths?
If God exists and the Bible is true, then Christ as a person predates human creation. Christianity did not begin with Christ's birth on earth as Jesus. The person of Christ and God's intention to save his children predates humanity and all "myths." This is not a story of a hero fighting evil. There is no fighting with God. This is a story about reconciliation and a father who sacrificed to bring his children out of destruction. It began in our timeline as soon as the original sin occurred and has been playing throughout history. Everything else is the spin-off.

Why all the similar myths? (Two reasons.)
If Satan exists as the Bible claims, then he is at war with God's children and he is a terrible adversary. Human intelligence pales in comparison. He knew God before our existence and is well aware of God's character. Wouldn't you think he had a good idea of God's plans and would put in place as much misinformation and propaganda as possible? He's at war. What else would he do?
Also, humans have known about God for six thousand years. As you point out, many stories are told, retold, changed and told again. This does not preclude an original story from being true.

Thanks,
Tsukho

Hello, Tsukho

I have not gone over your other posts yet, but I will. I just decided to point something out about this one first.

You ask two different questions and answered them both starting with "If God exists..." and "If Satan exists...".

Wouldn't it be philosophically honest to address the alternatives as well?

EDIT: Read your second post

Now your second post

(14-10-2014 06:52 AM)Tsukho Wrote:  Good gravy,

I chummed the waters and the sharks have arrived. It amazes me that the atheistic claim to superior logic and morality always breaks down to sarcasm and name calling. However, I'm sure if one of you posted on a Christian forum, you might get the same. *Sigh, our human condition....*

[WillHop, you said: Are you saying your god isn't smart enough to see Satan's tactics in advance and is incapable of defending against them?] The Bible teaches God is omniscient. He was well aware of Satan and all of history. God doesn't think like us. If we were omniscient, we would simply avoid all the bad things and live in Nirvana. God has different purposes. Allowing Satan to do what he does is part of that.

[You said: Are you saying your god can't defeat Satan?] God allows Satan to do what he does. Popular culture envisions a war between God and Satan, but that's not what the Bible teaches. God is omnipotent. There is no war. God allows Satan to continue for a span of time. True, Satan wars against us, but the idea of him warring against God is like flea warring against a mountain. There is no fight.

[That he can't take the ONE story that is supposed to be the greatest one ever told and change it enough to not replicate the dozens of other hero/savior tales?] Perhaps you missed the point of my post. God and his work predates all of human history. His story is not the copy, it's the original. Satan and mankind's versions are the replications.

You make a lot of assertions and you start form the premise that all of them are true. You don't even include the possibility of those assertions being false like you did in your first post where you ate least used two "If..." statements.

(14-10-2014 07:27 AM)Tsukho Wrote:  GWOG,

Thank you for the invitation to dialogue. There are, however, wayyyy to many points in your post to address.

My original intent was not to open up a can of worms, but simply say there is another way of interpreting the myths. I'm not saying you have to agree with it and believe it's true any more than I believe and and agree with all that you've said.
Perhaps you might agree, that if the God of the Bible is true, then it's logical that his original plan and intention would be repackaged, watered down, and distorted by men and Satan throughout our history. You're probably aware of the communication game in which a whispered phrase works it's way around a circle of people to be revealed at the other end as distorted and incomplete. The distortions do not mean that an original and true message did not exist in the first place.

God devised the original message. We distorted it.

As for the rest of your post, there are a number of points to which I don't have immediate answers. I'll never have all the answers. I don't know everything. But then again, neither do you. I hope you would also agree that secular humanism and evolution have lots of unanswered question, too. Evolution is a theory, not a law. It's the just the next best thing around if you don't believe in God.

You are obviously read up on a number of theories about the the Bible. Historical researchers have different theories on many historical events. I suspect we would end up in an argument about this historian's research versus that historian's research.

I can't prove God to you any more than you can prove no God to me. Based on my research and my experiences, I believe he does exists. Perhaps based on yours, you disagree.



(14-10-2014 07:47 AM)Tsukho Wrote:  Timber1025,

Just as you get to know the character of family, friends and co-workers, you can get to know the character of God. It involves reading the Bible and trying to spend time with him. (Yes, if God is real, then you can get to know him and communicate with him.) In this way you can get to know some about him. An analogy would be that my 3-year old knows some about my character. He knows I love him and I have his best interest in heart. However, he can't fathom all of my purposes and reasons. Some stuff he knows, the rest he surmises. The Bible straight-out says we are made in his image, but we don't think like him.

Don't get sanctimonious about suffering. It's not God's fault that happens, it's ours. We messed up. And humans would not allow suffering? Please, humans are the cause of almost all suffering. Just because God does not eliminate all human suffering, that doesn't mean he doesn't exists or doesn't love. Your children or mine might grow up to be mass murderers, but does that possibility cause us to have no children? No, we have them, teach them, let them go on their way and expect they will do the right thing.

And by the way, you use the words compassion and empathy as if they they are universal truths. Where does that fit in with evolution? Are they simply constructs for us to get along with each other? Do you decry a lion's lack of compassion in killing his young as you decry God's lack of compassion in not making the world a Nirvana? In evolution, having compassion is no more good than lack of compassion. In fact, there is no good or bad, there is only expediency and lack of expediency for a desired cause. So don't judge me with your constructs.

Thanks,
Tsukho.

EDIT: I have gone over all your posts now.

You mention "Perhaps you might agree, that if the God of the Bible is true" again.
But don't ponder the possibility of that god not existing.

You claim that "My original intent was not to open up a can of worms, but simply say there is another way of interpreting the myths." , yet you just stick to one story and don't contemplate on the possibility of that story being a a myth.

I won't even go into the "evolution is just a theory" sentence.

Cheers,
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14-10-2014, 08:17 AM
RE: Why I bother....
Quote:God is omnipotent. There is no war. God allows Satan to continue for a span of time. True, Satan wars against us, but the idea of him warring against God is like flea warring against a mountain. There is no fight.

Quote:Perhaps you might agree, that if the God of the Bible is true, then it's logical that his original plan and intention would be repackaged, watered down, and distorted by men and Satan throughout our history. ... God devised the original message. We distorted it.

If we and/or Satan can water down and distort god's plan then he is not omnipotent. If he is then the 'watering down' must be part of the overall plan. Either way the claims being made are all spurious with no demonstrable supporting evidence.

Quote:I'll never have all the answers. I don't know everything. But then again, neither do you.

The difference is that I accept that and understand that "I don't know" may be the best answer I have at this time. I will continue seeking to understand more but simply accepting nonsensical non-answers is not an option. It gives the illusion of having answers and that curtails progress.

Quote:Evolution is a theory, not a law.

You do not understand how science uses those terms. Theories do not advance to becoming laws. A law in science is just a description of an observation. The law of gravity, for example, defines the mathematical relationship between mass and distance and how they affect acceleration. A theory is the explanation of the evidence, including the relevant laws. To be an accepted theory it must explain the evidence. The theory of evolution explains the fossil record and the biological similarities and differences we find when we actually examine the evidence around is. It has been tested again and again and is the best explanation we have.

The religious concept of theory seems to be "something somebody thought up out of the blue one morning". It isn't that Darwin woke up one morning and said "I'm guessing it was natural selection" and all the scientists said "sounds good to me, let's go with it". That's how religion works, not how science works.

Quote:I can't prove God to you any more than you can prove no God to me.

I don't claim that no god exists. I say that the evidence presented so far that he does is specious at best. There is simply not enough that can't be explained without needing a god to accept that there is one.

Quote:An analogy would be that my 3-year old knows some about my character. He knows I love him and I have his best interest in heart.

Your 3-year old has demonstrable evidence that you exist. He can observe your actions and make inferences about your motives. What can you tell me about the motives of your god that I can't equally claim for any of the thousands of other claimed gods, demons, and spirits?

Quote:Just because God does not eliminate all human suffering, that doesn't mean he doesn't exists or doesn't love.

If your 3-year old was suffering and you could alleviate it would you? Congratulations, you are more moral than your god.

Quote:And by the way, you use the words compassion and empathy as if they they are universal truths. Where does that fit in with evolution? Are they simply constructs for us to get along with each other?

They aren't universal, they are facets of our evolution as a social species. They help individuals survive and reproduce. The finer details of morality can be arguable but the general framework is really pretty easy to derive from an evolutionary perspective. We see aspects of it in many species.

Quote:Do you decry a lion's lack of compassion in killing his young as you decry God's lack of compassion in not making the world a Nirvana?

The lion is acting according to the way he evolved. I accept that as a fact that I can not change. I find imagining a god that created a system that includes those facts and excuses it as a loving, omnipotent god who had to let it happen because his creation didn't live up to his expectations to be ridiculous. Theists have to twist reality beyond recognition to accept that level of nonsense.

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