Why I'm a Theist
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24-07-2015, 01:23 AM
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?

Oh I'm sure people here prefer for theists post as much as possible without spamming. The problem is when you guys(the theists) keep posting the same bad arguments that people have debunked a million times before over and over, it becomes extremely boring and tedious.

So far you've not offered anything we haven't seen before. The "evidence" you've brought up are just opinions and false logic.
You gave us 2 points so far, I think? If I missed the 3rd, 4th, and 5th somewhere, I'm sorry. Anyways, those "2" points are redundant, they're really just one. Cut out all of your word salad, all you're saying is: 1- The universe exist, therefore a creator did it. 2- Life exist, therefore a creator did it.
I don't expect point 3, 4, or 5 to be any different.

You've expressed earlier that you don't care if you can persuade any atheist here, but are looking to persuade the "lurkers". Good luck with that. Lurkers tends to hang around for a long time, they've also seen these arguments made and refuted a million times. Furthermore, I suspect the undecided lurkers are folks who doubt and are looking for information. The internet aside from rainbow singing cats videos and porn is a massive network of information, where people can educate themselves. Once they're informed and educated, the chance of you persuading them, I would suspect will be very low to nil.
Some one said it already, I don't think you're interested in a debate, you're looking to preach.
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24-07-2015, 09:56 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
The amazing part about his dishonesty is that, if you go look at the other atheist forum and read the thread where he posted this information/sermon the first time (see link I posted), they handed him his ass at least as well as any of us would be able to do. There are some very smart people there. (I finally went back and read the whole thread.) But it didn't even remotely impact his approach or honesty, even when called out on clearly provable errors of logic and/or fact. He simply kept going with his "let's be reasonable here" style of courtroom drama, as though it was an episode of Law and Order: Criminal Intent or something.

As I have written many times before, I stand in genuine awe of the Christian/Creationist ability to be disingenuous on that level, when it comes to the "fool the average person" method of trying to Do The Lawd's Work™ in "stopping Devilution™", as they see it. Luckily, they're only successful when they can control the forum/arena, and when they come to places well-stocked with people who can read and are educated in science, they tend to look like complete idiots even to the layperson.

The only real danger is that, because they are so irritating with their repetitious idiocy, we tend to get rather snarky in our replies to them, and the string of ad hominem insults that result (however well-deserved) can give the impression that we're just as bigoted against Christians as they are against us (ignoring the fact that there are plenty of Christians who are evolutionary biologists, and who would be arguing on our side on the same issue, and just as annoyed at the idiocy of the Creationist as we are; see e.g. my fiancée, or KingsChosen, for instance-- we miss you KC!), or that we're trying to squash dissent, an impression which the Creationist liar is all too happy to play up for the audience.

Sometimes, though, they just say stuff that's so amazingly stupid that even I am forced to post the "you're an idiot" response... because that's really all there is to say at that point. It's really frustrating to spend years learning what we do and don't know about science, only to have some pseudo-philosophical moron come along and deliberately (with preplanned deceitful tactics) misrepresent what we do know, and attempt to fool people away from learning about the wonders of the world as we know them through the scientific method. It can be infuriating to watch, and therefore hard to keep one's cool in replying. Angry

"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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24-07-2015, 10:01 AM (This post was last modified: 24-07-2015 10:04 AM by RocketSurgeon76.)
RE: Why I'm a Theist
Re-reading my own post, it dawns on me. How come no one ever brings up that point:

There are literally thousands of Christians who are working, publishing evolutionary biologists.

There are literally zero non-Christians who are Creationism/Intelligent Design proponents.

Seems like a salient point on the matter.

Edited to Add: (There are Muslims who are Creationist/ID types, but I'm counting them as "Christians" for the purpose of this point.)

"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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24-07-2015, 10:30 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(24-07-2015 10:01 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  Re-reading my own post, it dawns on me. How come no one ever brings up that point:

There are literally thousands of Christians who are working, publishing evolutionary biologists.

There are literally zero non-Christians who are Creationism/Intelligent Design proponents.

Seems like a salient point on the matter.

Edited to Add: (There are Muslims who are Creationist/ID types, but I'm counting them as "Christians" for the purpose of this point.)

That is a good point, and one I've made before in other forums -- when people accuse scientists of "having an agenda". Gee, scientists in general come from all kinds of religious and political backgrounds, but the tiny percentage of them who are creationists are 100% religious fundamentalists. Which side is more likely to have an agenda?
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24-07-2015, 10:47 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(24-07-2015 09:56 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  The amazing part about his dishonesty is that, if you go look at the other atheist forum and read the thread where he posted this information/sermon the first time (see link I posted), they handed him his ass at least as well as any of us would be able to do. There are some very smart people there. (I finally went back and read the whole thread.) But it didn't even remotely impact his approach or honesty, even when called out on clearly provable errors of logic and/or fact. He simply kept going with his "let's be reasonable here" style of courtroom drama, as though it was an episode of Law and Order: Criminal Intent or something.

As I have written many times before, I stand in genuine awe of the Christian/Creationist ability to be disingenuous on that level, when it comes to the "fool the average person" method of trying to Do The Lawd's Work™ in "stopping Devilution™", as they see it. Luckily, they're only successful when they can control the forum/arena, and when they come to places well-stocked with people who can read and are educated in science, they tend to look like complete idiots even to the layperson.

The only real danger is that, because they are so irritating with their repetitious idiocy, we tend to get rather snarky in our replies to them, and the string of ad hominem insults that result (however well-deserved) can give the impression that we're just as bigoted against Christians as they are against us (ignoring the fact that there are plenty of Christians who are evolutionary biologists, and who would be arguing on our side on the same issue, and just as annoyed at the idiocy of the Creationist as we are; see e.g. my fiancée, or KingsChosen, for instance-- we miss you KC!), or that we're trying to squash dissent, an impression which the Creationist liar is all too happy to play up for the audience.

Sometimes, though, they just say stuff that's so amazingly stupid that even I am forced to post the "you're an idiot" response... because that's really all there is to say at that point. It's really frustrating to spend years learning what we do and don't know about science, only to have some pseudo-philosophical moron come along and deliberately (with preplanned deceitful tactics) misrepresent what we do know, and attempt to fool people away from learning about the wonders of the world as we know them through the scientific method. It can be infuriating to watch, and therefore hard to keep one's cool in replying. Angry

Meh.. I actually enjoy seeing ID posts, they're the same crap I used to spit out when I was a believer. Funny, that was 20 years ago, it's still the same crap now; I wonder why they can't come up with anything better. Back then your average christian can only preach to people they can talk to, now on the online arena where information is available in an instant, they just get slaughtered where ever they go.

I have faith(HAH!!!)Laugh out load that the average reader in the information age is well armed enough to see through ID posts. What're the differences between believer vs non-believer, I think it's mostly information.
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24-07-2015, 10:56 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(24-07-2015 10:47 AM)xieulong Wrote:  I have faith(HAH!!!)Laugh out load that the average reader in the information age is well armed enough to see through ID posts. What're the differences between believer vs non-believer, I think it's mostly information.

I highly doubt that, access to information does not mean that one is capable of understanding them. Also information are filtered so main difference would be rather how information are interpreted not in the wealth of it.

Difference would be outlook on things, believers easily can found same wealth of knowledge as non believers.

The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.

Mikhail Bakunin.
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24-07-2015, 11:55 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
Hello all,

I'm going to respond to a bunch of posts in this post. I know it makes it harder to follow but I don't have infinite time.

Unfogged,
Quote: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.

I didn't claim it was magic.

Quote: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.

The case I make is from observed facts nothing in the gaps. We haven't found a naturalistic solution either. Just claiming Naturedidit doesn't help.

Quote: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.

My complaint is that you and others act as if its all wrapped up in a bow also its a naturalism in the gaps argument.

Quote: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?

I have no idea who designed the Creator or how the creator came to be. Theism is a hypothesis about how the universe and life came to exist, not a hypothesis about how the Creator came to exist. Secondly any 'naturalistic' explanation suffers the same fate.

Quote: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.

The point is that intelligent beings can do things that appear magical..but there not.

Rocket,

Quote:Astrophysics is the science of putting together the mathematics of how natural processes alone DO cause all the things we observe happening, from planetary and stellar formation to fusion to the prebiotic chemistry we can observe out in the stellar nebulae via radio telescope. Again, no gods involved here, just gravity and chemistry. The discoveries of the LHC at CERN show that even gravity is an emergent property of matter (the Higgs boson), and that the physical properties of elements (and how they bond) are determined by the subatomic particles' natural interactions. Again, no god there.

Cars and laptops function without a engineer or god sitting inside the engine compartment. But that doesn't mean cars or laptops were caused by mindless forces.

Quote:The idea that the world operates by magic is a dying one, and I'm sorry that you feel the need to cling to it emotionally... but it is the abandonment of the notion of magical forces that let us figure out that disease is caused by tiny creatures (Germ Theory), not by demons or "bad spirits" or other hocus pocus.

The most 'magical' of explanations is the notion mechanistic forces bootstrapped themselves into existence then proceeded without intent or an engineering degree to cause a universe to exist and produce something completely unlike itself, life and mind.

Willhopp,

Quote:But you're not looking for debate. You're looking to pontificate with illogical arguments. You said it yourself, you don't expect your arguments to persuade atheists, you're looking to convince the fence-sitters that you are right. But you seem disinterested in what atheists have to say and refuse to admit when you have holes in your arguments. How can there be a debate for fence-sitters to appreciate if you refuse to acknowledge the problems with your statements?

Not true, I'm taking time and effort to respond to substantive responses.

Stevil

Quote:Now for you to claim that existence of a seemingly ordered universe (including life) is evidence for a creator god you would then also need to show why that evidence supports a creator god more so than a natural process.
All of our recorded scientific observations of the universe show natural forces operating autonomously. There isn't one observation known to have occured in a supernatural fashion. This means that supernatural events are unprecedented whereas natural events are observed all the time. To demand that the begining of the universe was a supernatural event is special pleading.

Stevil no supernatural event has been known to occur because no matter how unexpected or anti intuitive something is if it is observed to occur its considered 'natural'. The supernatural is what can't possibly happen, unless it turns out it can happen in which case its deemed natural. For instance we commonly do things today that would be considered a supernatural act 200 years ago. If a 1000 years from now scientist can create real universes would you consider that to be a natural phenomena or a supernatural one?

Quote:Science isn't attempting to disprove a supernatural hypothesis. Science is focussing on a natural hypothesis because natural lends itself towards a consistent and objective discovery process whereas supernatural hypthesis do not. Science has made a remarkable amount of discoveries without ever having to appeal to supernatural intervention. The day we start appealing to supernatural causes is the day we stop doing science, the day we start voting on explainations rather than discovering them.

Things known to have been intentionally caused and designed can be explained naturalistically as well. Does that mean they were created unintentionally by mindless forces?
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24-07-2015, 11:59 AM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
How many forums have you peddled this shit on? How many atheist have you convinced of theism in the process? Does atheism make a claim in the rejection of theistic claims?

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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24-07-2015, 12:03 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
3. The fact sentient life exists.

A lot of atheists say we should look for the simpler naturalistic explanation for things such as life and sentience and we should avoid claiming a miracle happened. But which scenario is really less miraculous, that the universe, life and sentience is the result of plan and design or the result of mindless forces that didn't intend such to occur but happened anyway? Let's compare it to the existence of a computer, would it be less miraculous to say a computer is the result of design and engineering or it was the unintended by product of the laws of physics that unintentionally created a computer? Before anyone blows a gasket I know in response you're going to say it's an unfair comparison because we know a computer was designed and engineered. The point is in trying to avoid the supernatural miracle of a Creator causing the existence of life and sentience it would seem a greater miracle is being called for by claiming that mindless, lifeless forces without plan or intent caused something greater than itself to exist. Is anyone going to argue that sentience and mind isn't greater than the source it is alleged to have come from?

4. The fact the universe has laws of nature, is knowable, uniform and to a large extent predictable, amenable to scientific research and the laws of logic deduction and induction and is also explicable in mathematical terms.

In other words it has many of the same characteristics as things known to have been planned, engineered and designed and is why in effect scientists are able to reverse engineer the universe.

5. The fact there are several characteristics of the universe that fall within an extremely narrow range that not only allow life as we know it, but also allow the existence of planets, stars, solar systems and galaxies.

In his book 'Just Six Numbers' the deep forces that shape the universe, highly respected astrophysicist (and atheist) Martin Rees explains each constant in depth and the consequences if any of these constants were slightly different. So mind numblingly narrow is the degree of precision needed that as a result he concludes this is one of an infinitude of universes all with different characteristics and as a result we live in the universe with the right 'numbers'. A simpler explanation that doesn't needlessly multiply entities (to infinity in this case) is that the constants were intentionally designed to fall within a range that allows planets, stars and galaxies to exist.

If atheists were actually looking for evidence that supports the belief that a personal agent caused and designed the universe to support life this would be such evidence. It is an earmark of design when personal agents such as humans create contrivances such as a computer or a car or a nuclear plant, that in order for the contrivance to work properly, it must fall in a narrow range of characteristics for the contrivance to work as designed.

The primary objection raised to this line of evidence is the possibility that in order for a universe to exist in the first place it must fall within the narrow range we observe and therefore they claim there is no narrow range unless we know a range is possible.

I'll point out first that this objection is pure speculation, there is no evidence that if a universe exists, it has to be like this universe. That would be akin to saying if there are other solar systems its possible they have to be like the one we observe. We know this isn't true, other solar systems are much different from our own. I could point out that even though atheists raise this point as an objection, it doesn't mean they actually think such is the case. Atheists reserve the right to raise objections they don't actually subscribe to. I say the objection is meaningless, even if the universe had to be as it is it leaves the question why would it have to be in the narrow range that supports planets, stars, solar systems and ultimately life? If as most atheists claim that mindless forces that caused the universe didn't care or plan for planets, stars or life why would it turn out that in order for a universe to come into existence it must have the characteristics that allow planets stars and life? Since they don't actually believe this objection to be the case, the question doesn't matter.

Martin Rees's Six Numbers

Martin Rees, in his book Just Six Numbers, mulls over the following six dimensionless constants, whose values he deems fundamental to present-day physical theory and the known structure of the universe:

N≈1036: the ratio of the fine structure constant (the dimensionless coupling constant for electromagnetism) to the gravitational coupling constant, the latter defined using two protons. In Barrow and Tipler (1986) and elsewhere in Wikipedia, this ratio is denoted α/αG. N governs the relative importance of gravity and electrostatic attraction/repulsion in explaining the properties of baryonic matter;[3]
ε≈0.007: The fraction of the mass of four protons that is released as energy when fused into a helium nucleus. ε governs the energy output of stars, and is determined by the coupling constant for the strong force;[4]
Ω ≈ 0.3: the ratio of the actual density of the universe to the critical (minimum) density required for the universe to eventually collapse under its gravity. Ω determines the ultimate fate of the universe. If Ω>1, the universe will experience a Big Crunch. If Ω<1, the universe will expand forever;[3]
λ ≈ 0.7: The ratio of the energy density of the universe, due to the cosmological constant, to the critical density of the universe. Others denote this ratio by \Omega_{\Lambda};[5]
Q ≈ 10– 5: The energy required to break up and disperse an instance of the largest known structures in the universe, namely a galactic cluster or supercluster, expressed as a fraction of the energy equivalent to the rest mass m of that structure, namely mc2;[6]
D = 3: the number of macroscopic spatial dimensions.

N and ε govern the fundamental interactions of physics. The other constants (D excepted) govern the size, age, and expansion of the universe. These five constants must be estimated empirically. D, on the other hand, is necessarily a nonzero natural number and cannot be measured. Hence most physicists would not deem it a dimensionless physical constant of the sort discussed in this entry. There are also compelling physical and mathematical reasons why D = 3.

Any plausible fundamental physical theory must be consistent with these six constants, and must either derive their values from the mathematics of the theory, or accept their values as empirical.
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24-07-2015, 12:07 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
He's like the Donald Trump of theists. Except less successful. Less rich. Less publicized. Less interesting. Probably less good looking.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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