Willingness to believe
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18-03-2016, 06:51 PM
RE: Willingness to believe
(18-03-2016 06:05 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(18-03-2016 02:17 PM)debna27 Wrote:  As a rationalist and a skeptic, since my deconversion I've always said that if the right evidence was there I'd 100% admit that there was a god.

Hi. I'm Bob.





I'm skeptical there is any such thing as certain evidence. Or even certainty for that matter.

But you're evidently not certain of it. Consider

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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19-03-2016, 03:21 AM (This post was last modified: 19-03-2016 03:26 AM by Stevil.)
RE: Willingness to believe
(18-03-2016 05:54 PM)debna27 Wrote:  I'm using this terminology because that was the (patriarchal) religion in which I was raised. At this point in my post, I was referring to this particular "God" character rather than just a generic god.
OK, sure. I assume you are talking about the Christian god, just because most theists coming to this site are Christians, generally Americans.

I don't think it makes sense to say that Christianity (above other religions) is the one that needs to be taken seriously, needs to be given a chance, needs a reason why you reject it.

I understand you have probably come from indoctrination in this Christianity thing and are probably surrounded by Christians demanding that you open your heart to Christianity rather than "risk" being condemned as a non believer.

But the question still stands (not specifically a question for you). Why Christianity above other gods, why a He rather than something non gender specific?

It feels like to me, that perhaps you have a dart board with many options on it. You are told you MUST make a choice and that you WILL be judged based on your choice. You aren't offered any evidence or real reason to pick one over all the rest. But you are being told that your immortal soul hangs in the balance, that if you choose wrongly, you will be condemned.

You may as well put a blind fold on, turn your back to the board and throw the dart over your shoulder. It seems this Christian god judges you based on how "Lucky" you are. Kinda like an employer throwing job applications towards a hat because they want to employ the lucky people. If you are lucky your job application lands in the hat, the unlucky ones don't.

It makes no sense whatsoever.
(18-03-2016 05:54 PM)debna27 Wrote:  I was specifically referring to the security that I associated with thinking that I had all the answers, and that there was always someone listening when I prayed. Regardless of whether or not anything happened (it never did, aside from what I may have thought at the time; yay confirmation bias) there was a definite psychological comfort from thinking that someone somewhere had an interest in my problems at all times. I think many current and former believers can attest to feeling this at some point in their lives.
I've never been a theist, so I don't understand this fully.

I assume somewhat that a person can build a relationship with their Diary. They write their innermost thoughts down in it, frequently (almost religiously). It gives them comfort to reflect on such things, to share these thoughts. But perhaps it is more powerful if you imagine that an intelligent "perfect listener" is sharing these moments of yours.

(18-03-2016 05:54 PM)debna27 Wrote:  Putting things in that light actually makes things clearer in my mind. I'm not sure what kind of "evidence" I was referring to (mostly because I'm almost positive it's not going to appear any time soon); I was coming from the perspective that is often presented to me by those in my life who are still religious.
With Christianity my perception is that the honus is always put on You.
It's your fault that Jesus hasn't approached you, you haven't opened up your heart to him.
That kind of BS, I think it is emotional blackmail. Also some form of emotional abuse, trying to knock down your self esteem, your own ability to trust your own judgment and reason. They want you not to trust yourself, they want you to just run with the Jesus thing, be part of the group, to belong. For them it is not important how you come to Jesus (be it possibly from weakness and confusion) the only thing that is important to them is that you come to Jesus.
I don't think they do it intentionally, i don't think they are aware that they are using blackmail and abuse on you. They are victims too, it is brainwashing and memes they are spouting. They want you to be happy and they think Jesus is the answer.

This is not how I personally want to raise my own kids. I want to teach them how to think for themselves, how to assess claims, how to verify them. Ultimately if their opinions differ from mine then it is great that they are thinking for themselves. That, to me, is a win.


(18-03-2016 05:54 PM)debna27 Wrote:  I suspect that the more I move away from this mindset, the more I'll be able to automatically use your style of logic (if not the specific points) to combat this expectancy.
I think it is important to try to come to grips with epistemology. To try and work out how we come into knowledge. Is it based on evidence? Based on personal experience? Based on what?
There are times where we can't see the evidence, or have no clue how sufficient evidence can be gathered. At those times we make some judgement calls. Is this consistent with my other knowledge and life experiences? Could I be wrong?

We often are wrong, it's no biggie. But there is no shame in not knowing something, no shame in being on the fence. You will not be judged for not knowing something. It is not wrong for you to not believe.
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19-03-2016, 08:48 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(18-03-2016 02:17 PM)debna27 Wrote:  As a rationalist and a skeptic, since my deconversion I've always said that if the right evidence was there I'd 100% admit that there was a god. I do still feel that way, but something else has changed.
I used to say that I wished I could believe in God, and that I would like him to show me he was real so I could have the comfort of that belief system. But now that I've spent more time away from religion, I don't think I want that any more. I've stopped looking for God, not because I'm sure that he couldn't exist, but because a big part of me really hopes that he doesn't. Don't get me wrong: I'm still a rationalist and I will accept evidence of God if it's legitimate. But I'm not going to actively go looking for it right now.
I'm scared that I'm acting like a theist in that I only want to find things that support my worldview, and that I'm being closed minded. However, I'm cognitively willing to accept evidence, just emotionally unwilling, which seems like an important distinction.
Do any of you feel this way? (Sorry if it sounds convoluted, these kinds of topics never translate as well into words as I would like them to)

You just said it, "....not because I'm sure that he couldn't exist, but because a big part of me really hopes that he doesn't".

Now, why does a big part of you HOPE that God doesn't exist? Why? Why, why why?
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19-03-2016, 08:56 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  the more scientists look the more god isn't there.

Ok...and the more theologians look, the more God is there. In other words, there is always that "reverse" side of things. The opposite effect.

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  And one should remember that Piglet had advantage over god - he was adequately defined.

God is adequately defined.

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  I would be willing to accept evidence for god

I would be willing to accept evidence against god's existence. *awaits the typical "you can't prove a negative" nonsense..*

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  , but first this nebulous something would need sensible and falsifiable definition.

Why are you making it seem as if defining God is such a difficult task...as if that is the stumbling block for you? Laugh out load

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  However I'm nearly -99.99% - certain that my willingness is in vain as there is only indoctrination and god blanky for those unwilling to face life challenges on their own. Of creator there is no sign.

Theists are willing to face life's challenges, we are just unwilling to accept the notion that mindless and blind processes (nature) can create things like universes, life, species, consciousness, language, and be the source of objective moral values.

We don't have enough faith to believe stuff like that.
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19-03-2016, 09:03 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(19-03-2016 08:56 AM)Call_of_the_Wild Wrote:  
(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  the more scientists look the more god isn't there.

Ok...and the more theologians look, the more God is there. In other words, there is always that "reverse" side of things. The opposite effect.

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  And one should remember that Piglet had advantage over god - he was adequately defined.

God is adequately defined.

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  I would be willing to accept evidence for god

I would be willing to accept evidence against god's existence. *awaits the typical "you can't prove a negative" nonsense..*

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  , but first this nebulous something would need sensible and falsifiable definition.

Why are you making it seem as if defining God is such a difficult task...as if that is the stumbling block for you? Laugh out load

(18-03-2016 02:34 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  However I'm nearly -99.99% - certain that my willingness is in vain as there is only indoctrination and god blanky for those unwilling to face life challenges on their own. Of creator there is no sign.

Theists are willing to face life's challenges, we are just unwilling to accept the notion that mindless and blind processes (nature) can create things like universes, life, species, consciousness, language, and be the source of objective moral values.

We don't have enough faith to believe stuff like that.

Keep your drivel to yourself. I'm not interested in shitty apologetic and "discussions" with clowns.

Don't bother with answering, you're on my ignored lists from now on.

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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19-03-2016, 09:06 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(19-03-2016 08:56 AM)Call_of_the_Wild Wrote:  We don't have enough faith to believe stuff like that.

Prefer fairytales huh? Gotcha.

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If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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19-03-2016, 09:23 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(18-03-2016 06:43 PM)Heatheness Wrote:  I have no desire to look for a god for two reasons:

I do not think there is one, so I'm just not interested in wasting my time in a foolhardy quest for unicorns or their equivalent.

Yeah, just continue believing that your fully functional human body with a brain, eyes, consciousness, etc...just continue believing that a mindless and blind process (nature) built you a fully functional human body. It can't see, yet it gave you eyes. It can't think, yet it gave you a brain and consciousness to go with it Laugh out load

(18-03-2016 06:43 PM)Heatheness Wrote:  I do not want there to be any gods because I would dislike (hate is more like it) it/them if there were and I have no desire to live my life with unresolvable hatred.

Ahh, the fact that truth value is not based on what you like/dislike, and God exists whether you like it or not....is quite...refreshing, to say the least.

(18-03-2016 06:43 PM)Heatheness Wrote:  “Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.

That is nonsense. God is omnipotent in the sense that he can do anything that is LOGICALLY possible. So the question is, is it logically possible for God to create human beings with FREE WILL but NOT allow them to commit evil acts WITH their freedom of the will? The answer is NO. It is not possible.

The above quote, along with the other nonsense you said after it, is bullshit...it doesn't represent what it means to be omnipotent.

(18-03-2016 06:43 PM)Heatheness Wrote:  This part, "Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent." is how I feel because there are thousands of years worth of evidence that, if a god existed, he has been unwilling to prevent evil doing. For that, my disgust would be unfathomable.

In order for you to judge God on his unwillingness to prevent evil, you are presupposing a "standard" of morality that God isn't adhering too. So where are you getting this "standard" from??? Why are your standards the correct ones? Hmmm Consider
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19-03-2016, 09:27 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(19-03-2016 09:03 AM)Szuchow Wrote:  Keep your drivel to yourself. I'm not interested in shitty apologetic and "discussions" with clowns.

Don't bother with answering, you're on my ignored lists from now on.

If I was you I would ignore me, too. Laugh out load
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19-03-2016, 09:28 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(19-03-2016 09:06 AM)morondog Wrote:  Prefer fairytales huh? Gotcha.

Prefer voodoo science huh? Gotcha.
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19-03-2016, 09:36 AM
RE: Willingness to believe
(19-03-2016 09:28 AM)Call_of_the_Wild Wrote:  
(19-03-2016 09:06 AM)morondog Wrote:  Prefer fairytales huh? Gotcha.

Prefer voodoo science huh? Gotcha.

Nope. I've got published, peer-reviewed science. If you or anyone disagree, you can challenge it. But challenge it with facts and better explanations. Not with shit you pulled out of your ass.

If you think there's something wrong with the scientific method, state it.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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