Why I'm a Theist
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06-08-2015, 11:00 AM
Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 10:50 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(06-08-2015 10:40 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  You hear about stupid people of this caliber. But it doesn't prepare you for interacting with them.

You're always here to show your true colors, to be nothing more than a troll. I keep thinking perhaps one days you'd redeem yourself and not be, but you always show your stripes.

I'm just waiting to see if you'll ever be honest. You've yet to disappoint in being a typical dishonest theist. Aka, a Christian.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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06-08-2015, 11:01 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 10:42 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(06-08-2015 10:39 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  If you drive a car in front of another car, for whatever reason, (inattention, blind spot etc etc) they will collide. It is 100 % probable they will collide. They will be labeled an "accident". You can't REALLLY be this stupid, (can you ?) Oh wait. You can. Weeping

And is that a semantically incorrect use of the word ?

It is the colloquial use. In that sense it is correct. The word, however, is meaningless with respet to the actual probabilities involved, which can be accurately calculated.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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06-08-2015, 11:30 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 08:53 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(06-08-2015 08:07 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  When I read through "first cause" or "prime mover" arguments, I tend to find them unconvincing. They generally rely on the absurdity of an infinite regress of cause, but then conclude the equal absurdity of an immaterial intelligence that somehow causes matter to exist and move. I cannot comprehend either of those absurdities, but I'm willing to concede that there are some things that are simply beyond my understanding.

On the other hand, and for the same reasons, I cannot refute these arguments. So I remain open-minded. Does a "first cause" exist, or is there an infinite regress of cause, or do we simply not fully understand the concept of "cause"? I can honestly say "I don't know". And I'm OK with that answer. I don't have to know everything. I don't have to have all the answers.

Is this also how you feel about a materialistic picture of the world as well, one that would negate a first cause?

Would you also say that you “don’t know” to certain materialistic pictures of the world, that that we’re product of unintentional, non-deliberate forces? Or in the words, that we’re a product of a series of physical accidents. Do you find yourself not particularly confident in hold to such views? Would you say you "don't know" here as well?

A lot of this strikes me as semantic hairsplitting. I am basically a materialist. Physics claims that matter/energy is conserved, and I see no reason not to believe that. So I believe that matter/energy in some form has always existed. Whether or not that requires a "cause", I simply don't know.

Note that the classic "first cause" argument (as formulated by Aristotle and used by Aquinas) has nothing to do with a temporal cause. Aristotle thought that the universe had always existed; Aquinas thought not, but couldn't prove it, and didn't really care, because that's not what the argument is about. What they were claiming is that anything that exists right now requires a cause that is operating right now to keep it in existence. That is a pretty abstract concept, and I don't see any way to physically prove it or disprove it. You can argue about it, but I don't see that such arguments really prove anything. It's just "language games" (in Wittgenstein's terminology). You're basically defining God into existence. It's not obvious to me that the existence of matter/energy requires a cause. It just exists, and that's good enough for me. I don't know "why" it exists, and I don't think anyone does. And I don't feel any strong need to know that particular "why". Some people do, I guess.

But I reiterate that I don't claim to "know" any of this. This is how reality appears to me, and as far as I can see, the available evidence supports my perception of reality. But I could be wrong. So could Aristotle and Aquinas. They were really really smart, but they were human. We're all fallible (even the Pope).
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06-08-2015, 01:15 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 10:13 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(06-08-2015 09:14 AM)Chas Wrote:  The anthropic principle presupposes that humans are supposed to be here. That is assuming facts not in evidence. That is why it is horseshit….By qualifying an event as an accident, you are over-specifying it - assuming intentionality where none has been shown to exist.

Well, we all seem to have our own horseshit, and seemingly default beliefs.

Where as you see me as assuming intentionality, I see you as assuming “the absence of intentionality”.

There is no evidence of intentionality, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

Quote:We’re always going to meet at these impenetrable intersections. Though I likely enjoy thinking about these intersections more so than you.

Really? I'd say you are more of an arrogant twit.

Quote:Where as you hold to a non-deliberate, unintentional cause as a default,

There is no evidence of intentionality, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

Quote:I see deliberate, intentional causes as a default.

There is no evidence of intentionality, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

Quote:Where as you seek that I convince you of my view, I seek that you convince me of yours. Where as you desire me to show you that it was intentional, I desire that you show me it wasn’t, that it was non-deliberate, unintentional. When you have trouble swallowing the word “accident”, it makes your case even less convincing.

I don't have trouble "swallowong" the word accident. You have trouble understanding the English language. Your usage lacks nuance and shades of meaning. It is simply the wrong word.

Quote:You think the intentional perspective is horeshit, I think the unintentional perspective, non-deliberate perceptive proposed by folks like Alex Rosenberg is horseshit. Perhaps you think it smells better than I do.

Absent evidence, it stays in the horseshit bin.

Quote:In a lot of ways there’s a great deal of parallel between you and I, on opposite sides of the fences, though there’s still a great deal of differences. You’re not a governing authority on what is or is not horseshit, because from my perspectives your sitting upon piles and piles of it yourself, but that’s just my opinion. You’ll likely see it all the other way around of course. You may hold your horesshit detector in high esteem, but I think mines is bigger than yours.

You constantly wallow in horseshit here.

Quote:We’re always going to meet at these impenetrable intersections. Though I likely enjoy thinking about these intersections more so than you.

Really? I'd say your high opinion of yourself is undeserved.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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06-08-2015, 01:27 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 11:30 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  A lot of this strikes me as semantic hairsplitting. I am basically a materialist. Physics claims that matter/energy is conserved, and I see no reason not to believe that. So I believe that matter/energy in some form has always existed. Whether or not that requires a "cause", I simply don't know.

I don't think it's a matter of semantic hairsplitting.

Materialism:
PHILOSOPHY
the doctrine that nothing exists except matter and its movements and modifications.

Would you say you basically are a materialist in the philosophical sense here?

This is sort of starting point of Rosenberg's beliefs, but it's not particularly hard to see why if someone believed this, it negates a variety of other beliefs, particularly the sort that entails the existence of "spooky stuff". There's no room here for dualism, or the sort of first cause assumed by Aristotle or Aquinas. The view negates the existence of a God of any type really, even the abstract ones.

Quote:Note that the classic "first cause" argument (as formulated by Aristotle and used by Aquinas) has nothing to do with a temporal cause. Aristotle thought that the universe had always existed; Aquinas thought not, but couldn't prove it, and didn't really care, because that's not what the argument is about. What they were claiming is that anything that exists right now requires a cause that is operating right now to keep it in existence. That is a pretty abstract concept, and I don't see any way to physically prove it or disprove it.

If Materialism is true, it disproves all this. If it's true than it leaves no room for Aristotle view to be true. One being true, negates the other being true.

Quote:You can argue about it, but I don't see that such arguments really prove anything. It's just "language games" (in Wittgenstein's terminology). You're basically defining God into existence.

I think there's more to their understanding of God, than what you're reducing it to, but that's perhaps another discussion.

Quote:But I reiterate that I don't claim to "know" any of this. This is how reality appears to me, and as far as I can see, the available evidence supports my perception of reality. But I could be wrong. So could Aristotle and Aquinas. They were really really smart, but they were human. We're all fallible (even the Pope).

Well, I think the term "know" has acquired very strong connotations, hence why there seems to be a distinction made between gnostic and agnostic, centering around the difference between knowing and believing. Such as when you say you're basically a materialist. While this might not mean that you "know" that materialism is true, it does seem to imply that you believe it is true. And not merely just "entertaining the possibility of it".
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06-08-2015, 01:39 PM (This post was last modified: 06-08-2015 01:42 PM by Tomasia.)
RE: Why I'm a Theist
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06-08-2015, 01:40 PM (This post was last modified: 06-08-2015 01:48 PM by Tomasia.)
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 01:15 PM)Chas Wrote:  There is no evidence of intentionality, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

There's no evidence of unintentionally, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

You're confirmation bias entails a belief that certain rules apply to appealing to intentionality, that don't apply to appeal to unintentionally.

Quote:I don't have trouble "swallowong" the word accident. You have trouble understanding the English language. Your usage lacks nuance and shades of meaning. It is simply the wrong word.

You failed in every single attempt to show why the colloquial, common understanding of "accident" is being wrongly applied. Please tell me what I am implying by the word "accident", that it's being used wrong here?
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06-08-2015, 01:41 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 01:40 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(06-08-2015 01:15 PM)Chas Wrote:  There is no evidence of intentionality, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

There's no evidence of unintentionally, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

Hey look, a theist trying to shift the burden of proof! Well fuck me sideways.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
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06-08-2015, 01:48 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(06-08-2015 01:40 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(06-08-2015 01:15 PM)Chas Wrote:  There is no evidence of intentionality, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

There's no evidence of unintentionally, therefore to assume it is a logical error.

You're confirmation bias entails a belief that certain rules apply to appealing to intentionality, that don't apply to appeal to unintentionally.

You are really, really bad at this. You are making a positive claim, the burden of proof is on you. I am simply not accepting that for which there is no evidence.

Quote:
Quote:I don't have trouble "swallowong" the word accident. You have trouble understanding the English language. Your usage lacks nuance and shades of meaning. It is simply the wrong word.

You failed in every single attempt to show why the colloquial, common understanding of "accident" is being wrongly applied.

No, I didn't. You simply can't or won't understand it.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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06-08-2015, 01:49 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 03:36 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  Greetings all,

I'm a secular theist. I'm not involved in any organized religion nor am I promoting any religion or religious belief. I am a theist because I believe the preponderance of available evidence leads to that conclusion. The word preponderance simply means more evidence in favor of than against. However its not just the evidence in favor of theism that leads to my opinion, its also the lack of evidence in favor of the counter position that we owe our existence and the universe to mindless forces that somehow came into existence and proceeded to cause a universe and life to exist. Whether atheists wish to defend the counter claim or not the theist-atheist debate is about two propositions; We owe the existence of the universe and life to a Creator or we owe our existence to mindless forces that somehow came into existence and caused all we observe.

First, I'm not claiming theism is a fact, it's an opinion. Its what I believe is true minus conclusive proof that would make it a fact. Therefore my 'burden' of evidence is a mere preponderance more in favor than against. Secondly I don't care if the case I make persuades the atheists on this board. Barring irrefutable evidence God exists the majority of atheists will say at the end of this thread I didn't make a case, there is no evidence in favor of theism and all the usual rhetoric and bellyaching. The only opinion that matters are those who are undecided.

The case for theism is circumstantial. The following is from a legal dictionary.

http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionar...l+Evidence

Circumstantial Evidence is also known as indirect evidence. It is distinguished from direct evidence, which, if believed, proves the existence of a particular fact without any inference or presumption required. Circumstantial evidence relates to a series of facts other than the particular fact sought to be proved. The party offering circumstantial evidence argues that this series of facts, by reason and experience, is so closely associated with the fact to be proved that the fact to be proved may be inferred simply from the existence of the circumstantial evidence.

From free dictionary.com

One important benchmark of admissibility is relevance. Federal Rule of Evidence 402 states, in part, "All relevant evidence is admissible, except as otherwise provided." The goal of this rule is to allow parties to present all of the evidence that bears on the issue to be decided, and to keep out all evidence that is immaterial or that lacks Probative value. Evidence that is offered to help prove something that is not at issue is immaterial. For example, the fact that a defendant attends church every week is immaterial, and thus irrelevant, to a charge of running a red light. Probative value is a tendency to make the existence of any material fact more or less probable. For instance, evidence that a murder defendant ate spaghetti on the day of the murder would normally be irrelevant because people who eat spaghetti are not more or less likely to commit murder, as compared with other people. However, if spaghetti sauce were found at the murder scene, the fact that the defendant ate spaghetti that day would have probative value and thus would be relevant evidence.

I will present 5 indisputable facts that support belief in theism. They don't prove theism is true, they merely provide good reason to think it's true. I'm not going to be making any 'God of the gaps' arguments nor am I going to offer any hypothetical scenarios or cite the mere possibility of something being true as evidence theism is true.

I present one indisputable fact which irrefutably proves that the claims of a creator god are false: The primacy of existence. This is the self evident fact that reality is what it is independent of anyone's conscious activity. So no matter how much indirect evidence you bring up, the primacy of existence principle makes it all moot.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

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The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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