Why do atheists become atheists?
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26-01-2015, 11:26 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:10 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  The Black swan analogy is a metaphor. You two are jumping at the subject of the analogy (Black swan) and holding on to it as if this is the sole point of the metaphor.

“The importance of the metaphor lies in its analogy to the fragility of any system of thought.”

met·a·phor noun \ˈme-tə-ˌfȯr also -fər\
: a word or phrase for one thing that is used to refer to another thing in order to show or suggest that they are similar
: an object, activity, or idea that is used as a symbol of something else

I find this discussion to be very important to me and I sincerely hope that you two are correct as strange as that may sound. But I remain skeptical and I will continue to poke at it as long as I perceive a weakness in what you claim.

In the end it may be a personal bias I cannot overcome or vice-versa. Cool

Yes, but the metaphor is still a false analogy.

I understand your personal bias. We all have some to some degree. All i can suggest is looking at it very closely to see if the bias is warranted.

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26-01-2015, 11:28 AM (This post was last modified: 26-01-2015 11:38 AM by Free.)
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(25-01-2015 10:03 PM)Stevil Wrote:  
(25-01-2015 09:54 PM)Free Wrote:  I never made anything up. Here is the Dawkin's Scale:

[Image: dawkins-scale.jpg]

These definitions on the Dawkins Scale are virtually universally accepted.
1. Dawkins doesn't own the definition of atheist or agnostic.

It is the standard. It makes no difference if you like it or not.

Agnostic:

1. (Theology) a person who holds that knowledge of a Supreme Being, ultimate cause, etc, is impossible.

2. a person who claims, with respect to any particular question, that the answer cannot be known with certainty.

Considering even the two definitions above, they both imply that knowledge somehow exists, but it can either not be known, or it is impossible to know.

If you claim "lack of knowledge," it necessarily implies that there must be some kind of knowledge available for you to be lacking of it. You cannot lack knowledge if no knowledge exists to lack.

If you claim "lack of beliefs," then the very same thing applies. There must be some degree of beliefs in existence for which you are lacking. Again, if there were no beliefs, you could not claim you were lacking them.

Quote:2. Nowhere on his scale does it mention the term "pure atheist".

It's implicit. A pure atheist is what is described as a 7.0. It's a simple term to define absoluteness.

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26-01-2015, 11:32 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:16 AM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(26-01-2015 11:10 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  In the end it may be a personal bias I cannot overcome or vice-versa. Cool

It's ok. I forgive you. Big Grin

Thumbsup

Quote:Although me and Free come to the same conclusion from radically different origins. The “fragility of any system of thought” makes the term “agnostic” redundant IMHO.

And vice-versa.

Quote:Besides, my claim is without weakness. As a prophet, I speak for god. We both agree he doesn't exist. Big Grin

Kinda makes me 7.0+. There's no long-term marketing value to a god separate from self, other than at an individual level. As god is reflected in my Gwynnies, my personal profit must be zero.

Your goddess is much more believable.

[Image: 00-Gvinet-Peltrou.jpg]

“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
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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26-01-2015, 11:37 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:28 AM)Free Wrote:  It's implicit. A pure atheist is what is described as a 7.0. It's a simple term to define absoluteness.
Why he pissed me off with that scale. If he ends up claiming 6.9 repeating, he's invalidating his own simplicity.

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26-01-2015, 11:41 AM (This post was last modified: 26-01-2015 12:07 PM by Free.)
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:37 AM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(26-01-2015 11:28 AM)Free Wrote:  It's implicit. A pure atheist is what is described as a 7.0. It's a simple term to define absoluteness.
Why he pissed me off with that scale. If he ends up claiming 6.9 repeating, he's invalidating his own simplicity.

I don't know. His entire position doesn't find itself grounded in logic. He tries to avoid his beliefs or lack thereof of being identified for some reason.

If he claims "lack of knowledge," it necessarily implies that there must be some kind of knowledge available for him to be lacking of it. He cannot lack knowledge if no knowledge exists to lack.

If he claims "lack of beliefs," then the very same thing applies. There must be some degree of beliefs in existence for which he is lacking. Again, if there were no beliefs, he could not claim he was lacking them.

He doesn't seem to get this. Surprisingly, neither does Chas:

Chas Wrote:Not having knowledge in no way implies that there is knowledge to be had.

http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...#pid726244

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26-01-2015, 11:43 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:41 AM)Free Wrote:  He doesn't seem to get this.

There's a lot of things he doesn't seem to get. I love the guy, but his theology is straight bullshit.

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26-01-2015, 11:58 AM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:26 AM)Free Wrote:  Yes, but the metaphor is still a false analogy.

I disagree because the topic of the metaphor is “system of thought”.

Quote:I understand your personal bias. We all have some to some degree. All i can suggest is looking at it very closely to see if the bias is warranted.

Trust me when I tell you that I am and you are helping challenge the bias, if it indeed exists.

“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
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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26-01-2015, 12:08 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 11:58 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  
(26-01-2015 11:26 AM)Free Wrote:  Yes, but the metaphor is still a false analogy.

I disagree because the topic of the metaphor is “system of thought”.

How does this system of thought relate to this discussion?

Quote:
Quote:I understand your personal bias. We all have some to some degree. All i can suggest is looking at it very closely to see if the bias is warranted.

Trust me when I tell you that I am and you are helping challenge the bias, if it indeed exists.

Meh ... you'll be 7.0 by the time I'm done with ya!

Big Grin

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26-01-2015, 12:11 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(26-01-2015 08:14 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  
(25-01-2015 11:51 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Evidence of absence would make sense only if the absence is proof that the thing isn't true.
For example if I tell you my jar is full of marbles, you look in my jar and see that the marbles are absent then this is evidence that my jar is not full of marbles.
But if I tell you that Polar Bears live on ice continents and you search the South Pole and don't find any, this doesn't mean that you have evidence that Polar Bears don't exist. Even if you take a look at the North pole and don't find any, this does not mean that Polar bears don't exist. Perhaps you didn't look very well, perhaps the Polar bears on the North pole have died out but they now only live in zoos. It is very hard to prove that an animal has gone extinct.
The evidence of absence for gods would only apply if you knew where to look and if it was impossible for gods to exist and at the same time not be in that place that you look. The god definition, as meager as it is, doesn't posit how to look for gods. The Christian god is unobservable, so how can you find it? The Greek gods live in a cloud-palace above Mount Olympus, but if you don't find any clouds above Mount Olympus that doesn't mean that they haven't taken their cloud to Hawaii for a brief holiday.

Stevil, you do realize you’re preaching to the choir right?
Oh, yeah. I know you said you were a 6. I just felt it important in a broader sense to highlight the difference between absence of evidence and evidence of absence.

Somehow Free thinks absence of evidence = evidence of absence in the special case of the supernatural. It's special pleading.
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26-01-2015, 12:13 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
"Lack of knowledge" really doesn't apply to Huxley's version, to which I have no objection. Having met God, verily I say unto you, that shit is unknowable. Big Grin

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