Why I'm a Theist
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23-07-2015, 08:20 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 06:55 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  We are the regular folks who observe on nearly a daily basis that mindless forces except when corralled by the laws of physics are chaotic. We as intelligent humans expend a great deal of energy creating order out of chaos. What order there is arises only because of the laws of physics.

Oh. The regular folks who have never bothered to read anything about chaos theory or pretty much any field of science. The ones who think that their everyday experience is enough to understand the workings of the universe. The people with no serious education or experience but think their opinion is still worth as much as that of people that study these things for a living.

I'm not saying I can explain them, but I know enough to know that I shouldn't go around making claims about what makes sense in a field that I don't study. I take the experts at their word and await updates.

Quote:What if there wasn't only a universe but one which appeared to have rules of behavior so that it caused stars, galaxies, solar systems and planets to exist. I'd have at least a factual basis to conjecture that an engineer of some sort was involved.

I'd say appearances can be deceptive and that if the subject really interests you then you should study it and not just go by what your general impressions are.

Quote:Again I'm not making a religious or Christian argument. The Creator in this instance could be a scientist from another universe for the purpose of this discussion.

And you totally missed the point. The question you said you expected from atheists based on your vague speculations about a creator isn't one that I would expect. I would expect it if you were presenting the argument for the Christian god but not for a deistic one. You don't seem to have a good understanding of atheists and how they typically approach claims.

Quote:They will get to all that but they will start by showing a death has occurred. What chance of conviction will they have if they can't demonstrate a death has even occurred? A corpse is but the first line of evidence but show me a murder in which no one has died?

There are cases where there is no body but, again, you are missing the point. Having a body does not imply a murderer unless there is additional evidence. Having a universe does not imply a creator unless there is additional evidence. Your "the universe exists" point carries no weight at all.

Quote:Just as in a murder case if there is no decedent or evidence of a decedent the inquiry as to whether the death was caused intentionally or naturally never comes up.

Again, there can be suspicion of murder even if there is no body. Your thought experiment I find useless because if there were no universe there would be no claim so trying to weigh whether it there would be more reason or not to make the claim is incoherent.

Quote: In order for theism to have any merit at all certain conditions (such as the existence of sentient beings and a place that supports there existence) have to obtain. Why would mindless forces without plan or intent cause the conditions necessary for theism to be true?

Before the god created the universe there were no beings and no place for them so those are not required conditions for theism to be true, only for something other than a god to believe that. Your question has no meaning since you haven't shown the conditions to be necessary for theism or that they are unexpected without a god. We have no other universes to compare ours to so we have no way to judge how likely or unlikely it is for universes to ecist or for life to appear.

All you have ended up saying is that you don't understand how the universe could be or how life could start so goddidit. It is an elaborate god of the gaps but nothing more.

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23-07-2015, 08:21 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 08:18 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  
(23-07-2015 07:55 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  It ebbs and flows.

I'm not worried. Eventually they'll break a rule or reveal their sockiness and then they'll be banned.

I don't get this sentiment...don't you want debate? I ran a forum for a while and as an administrator I wanted lively debate. The name of the forum is Real life debates with theists but you would prefer theists didn't post?

It's not about what she wanted per se, it's a description of a common pattern of the forum's past theists.

So far I haven't seen much reason to believe you'll be on the receiving end of that treatment.

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23-07-2015, 08:26 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 08:18 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  
(23-07-2015 07:55 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  It ebbs and flows.

I'm not worried. Eventually they'll break a rule or reveal their sockiness and then they'll be banned.

I don't get this sentiment...don't you want debate? I ran a forum for a while and as an administrator I wanted lively debate. The name of the forum is Real life debates with theists but you would prefer theists didn't post?

You don't really seem to be an actual theist by your own definition, and you also don't want to debate but rather lecture.
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23-07-2015, 08:30 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 07:28 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  Explain to me how it is more magical for an intelligent designer to create something highly complex (like a universe) then it is for mindless forces without intent or desire to do the same thing? We are used to scientists and engineers doing incredible things that 200 years ago would be acts of pure magic...true?

They are not "mindless forces". Order arises spontaneously. How many time do you have to hear that. They are forces that spontaneously organize. Why ? We don't know. Live with it. Get over it.

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23-07-2015, 08:32 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
Sorry I haven't been here to help with this discussion, guys; my Beloved is on the phone, and I'm listening now to her trying to get our kid into the tub, as he resists the idea furiously. We've been talking nearly 45 minutes, and with all due respect to everyone here, she's very pretty and very smart and I am fonder of her than all of you combined. (I say this with affection.)

When we're done, I'll return and excoriate this arrogant lawyer-wannabe.

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23-07-2015, 08:36 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 08:32 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  Sorry I haven't been here to help with this discussion, guys; my Beloved is on the phone, and I'm listening now to her trying to get our kid into the tub, as he resists the idea furiously. We've been talking nearly 45 minutes, and with all due respect to everyone here, she's very pretty and very smart and I am fonder of her than all of you combined. (I say this with affection.)

When we're done, I'll return and excoriate this arrogant lawyer-wannabe.

But you like me just a titch better than the others. I know it. Angel

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23-07-2015, 08:38 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 07:28 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  
Quote: That's the problem with a claim that magic exists... if you grant that it does then everything can be explained that way whether there is a natural explanation or not.

I'm looking forward to your naturalistic explanation of how natural forces caused itself to exist.

I don't think I claimed that it was naturalistic, only that that is what I consider to be the most likely answer given all that we have learned so far.

My bottom-line answer is "I don't know, I'm watching the people who study these questions for a living to see what they find". Jumping to goddidit is just more god of the gaps, especially considering that we have found exactly nothing that requires a magical solution to operate so we have no precedent to compare things that are god-caused from things that are the result of natural processes.

Quote:Some perspective on abiogenesis. Lets grant for a moment that chemical processes may account for it occurring. A myriad of other conditions have to obtain before that is possible. Its an assumption among atheists for sure but scientists also (most of whom are atheists) that life must be relatively simple to occur. After all it didn't occur intentionally so it must be relatively simple. Yet highly motivated scientists (using intelligence) have been unable to duplicate the conditions alleged to have arisen by a chance process. We can't even make it happen by intentionally trying to make it happen.

As I said before, naturally occurring chemicals link up in ways that form the basic building blocks of life. This has been seen in experiments and found to occur, apparently naturally, in space. You are complaining that processes that required millions, perhaps billions, of years can't be reproduced in a few decades. We still have much to learn but every bit of evidence so far supports the idea that it can happen without conscious intent.

As somebody else noted, the inference I get is that you want an answer NOW and are not comfortable with not knowing. That's a big difference I often see as well between theists and atheists. The fact that I can't tell you how to mix some chemicals together and see a functioning cell appear isn't license to jump to the conclusion that an intelligence is needed. It only means that we don't have the answers yet. Unless you have evidence that it can't happen naturally the smart thing to do is to continue to investigate.

Quote:Explain to me how it is more magical for an intelligent designer to create something highly complex (like a universe) then it is for mindless forces without intent or desire to do the same thing?

So who designed your designer? It would have to be incredibly complex so it either always existed (which seems unreasonable since it would mean that complexity is the normal baseline and if anything always existed then the simpler the more likely) or it was created by another designer (which gets into an infinite regress) or it evolved from something less complex (which obviates the need for an intelligent designer). Do you have another option?

Quote:We are used to scientists and engineers doing incredible things that 200 years ago would be acts of pure magic...true?

Yes, but so what. I've already agreed that intelligent agents can create things. That doesn't affect the possibility of things coming about as the result of natural processes one way or the other.

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23-07-2015, 08:45 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 04:59 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  1. The fact the universe exists

There are certain facts that must be true for anyone to think God exists. For humans to have any reason to think God might exist, we must have a place that allows us to live. There are in fact several facts and conditions that must be true in order for there to be any reason to think the existence of a Creator is true. None of those facts needs to be true for atheism to be true. Atheism doesn't require the existence of a universe to believe atheism is true. If the universe didn't exist atheism might still be false (God might exist but not have created the universe) but there would be no evidential reason to raise the existence of God. Additional lines of evidence soon to follow...

That is not evidence, it is a weak argument.

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23-07-2015, 08:57 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
Okay. Off at last. Sorry 'bout that, guys! They went to the zoo, today, so I got to hear all about it, and we had to plan some stuff because they'll be here this weekend. Smile

And I see that, in the last few minutes, some of you guys have done an excellent job, so I wasn't really needed after all.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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23-07-2015, 08:59 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(23-07-2015 07:28 PM)drewpaul Wrote:  Some perspective on abiogenesis. Lets grant for a moment that chemical processes may account for it occurring. A myriad of other conditions have to obtain before that is possible. Its an assumption among atheists for sure but scientists also (most of whom are atheists) that life must be relatively simple to occur. After all it didn't occur intentionally so it must be relatively simple. Yet highly motivated scientists (using intelligence) have been unable to duplicate the conditions alleged to have arisen by a chance process. We can't even make it happen by intentionally trying to make it happen.

A few scientists have worked on this for a few decades and you declare defeat?

Nature had hundreds of millions of years.

Quote:Explain to me how it is more magical for an intelligent designer to create something highly complex (like a universe) then it is for mindless forces without intent or desire to do the same thing? We are used to scientists and engineers doing incredible things that 200 years ago would be acts of pure magic...true?

The universe looks just like it should if it came from the Big Bang.
The order in the universe looks exactly like those mindless forces would have it look.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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