PDA

View Full Version : Psalm 14: Who was Jesus' grandpa?



Pages : [1] 2 3

Kodos
01-03-2011, 09:32 PM
I. This Thread, Me, and You
This is the fifth incarnation of the (in?)famous "Psalm 14, FTW" thread. The initial thread was created by myself and it's title is a reference to the titular psalm which claims that atheists are all fools and that none have ever or will ever do good. It was created in response to a thread by WW2Dude in which he would ramble on and evangelize but refused to allow any dissenting opinion. I took offense both at the concept of the thread and the fact that WW2Dude evidently thought that truth is something so fragile and weak that it cannot stand up to scrutiny. Several scores of pages and lots of hilarity and nonsense later (Highlights including WW2Dude summoning his father to argue with me and the theists of the threat (WW2Dude and Vang mostly) arguing that there are certain situations under which genocide is a morally acceptable course of action) the thread died when I was forced to take a sudden leave of absence from these boards due to personal reasons. Thom started a second incarnation but this one focused itself a bit too strongly on evolution in my opinion and eventually tapered out when Vang, the only one as far as my quick re-skim of the thread goes, who was defending creationism suddenly disappeared and stop replying.

Not wanting to see this thread die I created its third incarnation.
That died with the old-old forum.
Same story for the fourth.
So here we are at the fifth verse, same as the first.

For those who don't know me I am a dystheistic anti-theistic atheist. I am firmly convinced that if there was a God or gods they would be, by default, evil and I am also as strongly convinced as I am of anything else that there is no God or gods and that the belief that there is is one that is harmful to both the individual and humanity as a whole. I also, however, strongly believe that every single person is entitled to believe whatever on Earth they want to believe, no matter how stupid or vile their beliefs may be. This does not, however, mean their beliefs are exempt from criticism or that they have the right to force their beliefs on others or demand that others fund their beliefs.

Anyway, this thread is for the timeless theism/atheism debate. If no one wants to take up the plate first lemme know and I'll be happy to toss out a topic to get things started.

II. Some Guidelines
1. Be up to date. I predict and hope this thread will be as big and successful as the first and so, to that end, I make the same suggestion I made in the first thread - Please read at least the three most recent pages before posting anything. I'm aware this thread may become quite huge but I don't think it's too much to ask that you read at least those three pages so as to get a general feel for where things currently are headed and to, hopefully, minimize the amount of repeated arguments.
2. Be civil. Unless someone says or does something truly reprehensible/ignorant let's try and treat each other with the respect we all deserve.
3. Be reasonable.
This ties into the things below a bit. I don't expect you all to be theology and/or philosophy majors but at least try and back up any claims with some form of reasoning beyond "because!." I'm not asking for citations or things but do at least make sure you are posting arguments and not statements.

III. Some Common, Bad, Theistic Arguments Refuted
1. "Without God life is not worth living."
Now while I cannot say how much I disagree with this statement it is also a statement that is completely irrelevant to the existence or non-existence of God or gods. If a man's wife dies his life may very well become unlivable and miserable but this fact does not make his wife any less dead. Whether life without God is worthless or not has absolutely no bearing on whether or not God does in fact exist. The same thing applies to any arguments like "Atheists are evil and we need God to be good" whether or not this is true means nothing to whether or not God exists. On the flip side I don't want any fellow atheists necessarily using the horrible atrocities committed in the name of God or purportedly by God as evidence either. Hitler existed and he was evil. Atheism may be wrong but dystheism/misotheism may still be right.
2. "Things exist, ergo they must have a creator."
This is an laughable argument that is so clearly unsound that, to my knowledge, no modern theologian dares utter it. Even without bringing up the fact that the human mind is hard-wired, by virtue of being rooted in reason and logic, to assume a creator where it sees order this is still an unsound argument. If the argument for God is that everything must have a creator than God too must have a creator and His creator a creator and so on unto infinity. If we argue that God is the sole exception and that He is without cause than the entire argument collapses as we can just as well argue that there is no God and that the universe itself is the sole exception and devoid of creator. One cannot have it both ways.
3. "Faith!"
Arguments put forth without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.
4. "I don't have to prove God exists you have to prove He does not!"
No, no I do not. You are claiming that God or gods exist(s) and I am claiming you have yet to prove such a thing. The burden of proof is solely on the heads of the theists.
5. The Ontological Argument: Existence is not, in and of itself, a quality. QED

IV. Related Links
The Skeptics Annotated Bible (http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/)
Ethical Atheist (http://www.ethicalatheist.com/)
The Church of Reality (http://www.churchofreality.org/wisdom/welcome_home/)
Positive Atheism's Big List of Scary Quotes (http://www.positiveatheism.org/hist/quotes/scarstartframe.htm)

V. Opening Challenge
With all that introductory nonsense out of the way I'm going to do something I shouldn't do in an attempt to foster discussion - I'm going to present an argument against God's existence when the burden of proof is not mine.

In order to know something exists we have to know something about it. Existence is determined by qualities. There is nothing mankind claims to know without knowing anything about it. Theistic agnosticism, ergo, makes the insane claim of "I know God exists." "What is God?" "I don't know" "Then what do you know exists?" "I don't know that either."

Clearly then if the modern theist is to make any claims at all about their beliefs being anything but the most insane abortions of reason they must be able to say something about God. My challenge then to the theists is to give me some qualities about what God is - note that I said what God is, not how he behaves. "Good" is not a quality of existence and, in the case of God, is also highly dubious.

So that's my challenge/initial claim and I'd love to see it addressed, of course I don't mind steering the thread in other directions either if that's where it ends up going - I aim to please.

Fenn
01-03-2011, 10:19 PM
You KNOW I am jumping all over this thread! Really weird 'cause I was about to make a thread just to "lure" you into having some good 'ole discussion and debate.

Can I start with my own question? What do you specify, or rather what are the limits, of what a "God" can be defined as? If I read everything thoroughly you never specified this, so I may as well say "I am God" and name some of my personal qualities as evidence of my existence. Omnipotence? Omniscence? Does it have to be immortal?

Also, I remember last thread you said if something was fundamentally unknowable it could not exist? How is that? Wouldn't we be assuming humans could understand everything that exists?

Kodos
01-03-2011, 10:32 PM
You KNOW I am jumping all over this thread! Really weird 'cause I was about to make a thread just to "lure" you into having some good 'ole discussion and debate.
Psalm 14 is like Jesus Christ himself - it doesn't stay dead.


Can I start with my own question? What do you specify, or rather what are the limits, of what a "God" can be defined as?
This is a bit fuzzy, I admit but that's because god and God can mean many different things. I'd argue that it's a sort of intuitive thing. It's one thing to say Yahweh or Zeus or Thor or even Inari are gods, it's another to say the Strong Nuclear Force or a Chair is a god. At the very least I'd argue a God is a being and ergo must be something with consciousness and will.


If I read everything thoroughly you never specified this, so I may as well say "I am God" and name some of my personal qualities as evidence of my existence.
I'd argue that breaks with the normal definitions of a god.


Omnipotence? Omniscence? Does it have to be immortal?
See above.


Also, I remember last thread you said if something was fundamentally unknowable it could not exist? How is that? Wouldn't we be assuming humans could understand everything that exists?
I said that if something is fundamentally unknowable it may as well not exist. Existence is defined by qualities. To know something exists is to know at least one quality of that thing. If you cannot claim knowledge of even one quality of a thing then you cannot claim to know that the thing exists. While I do believe that the universe is ultimately more or less fully comprehensible - in principle - to human minds, I'm not saying that ultimate knowledge will be attained. But it is not necessary. If you can't name a single quality of something that means that you literally have no idea what you are even talking about. Name one thing that reasonable people believe in - besides the divine - which they also claim to be utterly ineffable. I am aware of nothing.

Electric_Nomad
01-03-2011, 11:31 PM
I said that if something is fundamentally unknowable it may as well not exist. Existence is defined by qualities. To know something exists is to know at least one quality of that thing.
lol, you are still in this, Kodos.(DDX here, if you remember me, that is ). Doesn't that awfully sounds like David Hume theory, Bundle Theory? If anything that does not have an empirical(notice) quality, it does not exist.(or so I think how it is). As for me, I share a similar story to this guy (http://somaliatheism.blogspot.com/2009/12/story-of-osman-hassan-elucidate-jeffrey.html)(A lot of things happened in my timeskip).

Sunny
01-03-2011, 11:36 PM
Before saying what I have to say, I'd like to first pose a question, "What, then, is proof of God?" To someone, it might be as simple as seeing the sun rise after a terrible night and feeling that everything is going to be all right or something like a miracle, like miraculously becoming well after being devastatingly sick. There are many through the ages who have said they have seen God. So, if these things weren't God, what were they?

Not everything can be answered with a scientific formula, but on the same coin, I think God and science go hand in hand. I think God uses science to do whatever it is that He happens to be doing. That's how I view at, at the very least. I don't believe God is the only being out there like Him, either.

There are plenty of things about God that could be answered. As far as I'm concerned, He's like us, and we're in His image, and there are way too many caps to the sentences. I'm sure he eats, breaths, and call me what you will for this, farts, too. In other words, like a normal human being, only perfected. I mean, there are plenty of books through the ages, beliefs, myths....Take the story of Noah and the Ark. There are over 200 versions of the story, and it didn't originate in the Bible. (My point is that there are tons of texts that talk about Him....) For all we know, Socrates never existed, if you want to say that written text/verbal proof means nothing. If you want an example of qualities...I mean, they're all over the Bible, really. Everyone has a personality and it shows through.

Take a look at Christ. (I believe they're two separate beings, not one.) He often spoke in parables. Obviously, symbolism meant a lot at the time. He tried to connect in a way that people could understand, and for those who were really interested, could find more connections in their lives. As for God...well....God is pretty patient with His people, like the Israelites. He totally didn't just wipe them off and shove them in some sand dune. Granted, he made them wander around for a long time, but you can tell He's a patient God.

There are tons of other qualities I could point out. You don't have to look too far to find them.

(With these things being said, I'd like to state that I really just don't care if you're convinced about what I have to say. I mean, seriously...whatever. But I do like to share how I think and feel and why I feel what I do....so, I'm not going to get into some huge debate about how I should change how I feel, just so yeh know. )

As for your comment about God....well, to me, I'd say, "Well, lulz, without God...or A God, we prolly wouldn't be here. At least, He would have hand His hand in something, or been aware." Not that I'm not saying that life couldn't be created on its own, but I'm sure God would be in the creation process, at least if it was important, somehow, whatever that happens to be. Plus, it would have to be on a planet, besides ours, that would have perfect conditions. Since we can't see all of the universe, we can't see all the possible inhabitable planets. We're always searching for proof of life, even at simply the cellular level, and maybe, someday, that will help going towards proving more of the existence of God.

Faith doesn't mean there isn't an evidence, either. I mean, there are some things you just can't prove at this point of this planet's development. Maybe in the future, perhaps, but there are plenty of unknown things in the universe.

But, anyway, that's the bulk of what I wanted to say. Fufufufufufu.

Kodos
01-04-2011, 12:02 AM
lol, you are still in this, Kodos.(DDX here, if you remember me, that is ). Doesn't that awfully sounds like David Hume theory, Bundle Theory? If anything that does not have an empirical(notice) quality, it does not exist.(or so I think how it is). As for me, I share a similar story to this guy (http://somaliatheism.blogspot.com/2009/12/story-of-osman-hassan-elucidate-jeffrey.html)(A lot of things happened in my timeskip).
Sorry I have absolutely no recollection of who you are. As a general rule - and I've said this before - I am only likely to remember any given user if one or more of the following conditions is met:
1. They are in my DnD campaigns.
2. They have a really memorable avatar or username.
3. I really like them.
4. I really dislike them.
Sorry, bad memory and all. Nothing personal.

And it's not even a theory, it's pure simple logic. If you can not say anything about something then by what metric do you have knowledge of it? What is knowledge? Whatever definition you subscribe to I am certain that you must run into some form of "Knowledge is, among other things, knowing something about something."
If you can't name a single quality of something then you know nothing about that thing.


Before saying what I have to say, I'd like to first pose a question, "What, then, is proof of God?" To someone, it might be as simple as seeing the sun rise after a terrible night and feeling that everything is going to be all right or something like a miracle, like miraculously becoming well after being devastatingly sick.
The argument from miracles is begging the question. First it must be demonstrated that something which cannot be explained by the current body of human knowledge occurred which is not a simple task. Once you have done that you must then somehow demonstrate that God exists and that he caused that miracle.
The argument from miracles is literally saying an unexplainable thing happened and then proceeding to immediately explain it with God. It's begging the question. You can't offer God as an explanation for anything when the very thing being debated is whether or not God exists.
That the sun rises after night is merely proof that the Sun exists and that the Earth orbits it. That it can engender feelings of happiness in people is merely proof that people can perceive and react to external stimuli.


There are many through the ages who have said they have seen God. So, if these things weren't God, what were they?
First it must be demonstrated that they saw something. Then we can start debating what they saw. The "testimony" of "witnesses" written down by anonymous authors centuries after the supposed witness died and then edited and re-translated repeatedly over tens of centuries is not compelling evidence of anything. Hearsay is inadmissible in a court of law for a reason, and this is hearsay of such a laughably poor quality that I struggle to think of anything less convincing.

If I told you that my grandfather saw your mother murder someone would you accept that as sufficient evidence to condemn your mother as a murderer? What if my grandpa died 60 years ago and spoke only Yiddish and I am going on what my friend (who had my grandfather's words translated for him by a third party) told me even though he never actually met my grandfather.

Yeah. Didn't think so.


Not everything can be answered with a scientific formula,
Actually the funny thing is that in principle, they can! Science is awesome!


but on the same coin, I think God and science go hand in hand.
Wrong. The core of science is that every idea must be falsifiable and constantly held up to scrutiny and examination. The core of faith is that some things just are and can be known magically and are utterly beyond questioning. They are mutually exclusive epistemological methodologies. Of course, that's being generous, faith is not a valid epistemology because faith does not actually arrive at knowledge. But that's neither here nor there at the moment.


I think God uses science to do whatever it is that He happens to be doing.
God is omniscient and omnipotent. He is literally incapable of science. An omnipotent being could alter the outcome of any experiment to his liking and furthermore he already knows the outcome of any experiment. Science is a method for arriving at knowledge and hinges around the idea of repetition. God cannot arrive at knowledge because he already has all knowledge, and as stated above, he can change the outcome of any experiment on a whim.


That's how I view at, at the very least. I don't believe God is the only being out there like Him, either.
What.


There are plenty of things about God that could be answered. As far as I'm concerned, He's like us,
How is he like us and how did you arrive at this knowledge? Anyone can rattle off a list of vague qualities. You must be more specific and you must demonstrate how you came to know of this quality.


and we're in His image, and there are way too many caps to the sentences.
See above.


I'm sure he eats, breaths, and call me what you will for this, farts, too. In other words, like a normal human being, only perfected.
It is not unreasonable to assume that there exists at least one human being on this planet who I am superior to in literally every single way. I am smarter, faster, stronger, better looking, more witty, and so on and so forth than this person. Am I a God to him? Whatever the definition of "god" may be, I daresay that it must be something more than "Like X but better!" because then you run into absurd situations like this. I am vastly more intelligent, physically capable, and so on than a small housecat. Am I the Lord of Housecats?


I mean, there are plenty of books through the ages, beliefs, myths....Take the story of Noah and the Ark. There are over 200 versions of the story, and it didn't originate in the Bible.
And?


(My point is that there are tons of texts that talk about Him....)
There are tons of stories that talk about Elves. Do Elves exist?


For all we know, Socrates never existed, if you want to say that written text/verbal proof means nothing.
I never said that. I said a number of things:
1. Evidence should be proportional to the claims. An extraordinary claim requires extraordinary evidence.
2. Evidence should be corroborated by more than one source.
3. Evidence should be internally and logically consistant.
The Bible satisfies none of these definitions and further more the Judeo-Christian God is logically impossible. It can be said with 100% certainty that Yahweh does not exist. I can be, and am, more sure of this simple fact than I am that there exists an external universe.



Name one and them demonstrate that Bible is reliable evidence.

[quote]Everyone has a personality and it shows through.
Okay?


Take a look at Christ. (I believe they're two separate beings, not one.) He often spoke in parables.
Which is stupid. Why would an omnipotent being need to use vague and mystical allegories to get his points across?


Obviously, symbolism meant a lot at the time. He tried to connect in a way that people could understand, and for those who were really interested, could find more connections in their lives. As for God...well....God is pretty patient with His people, like the Israelites.
God is so patient that he sent a bear to massacre dozens of children for mocking a blind man.


He totally didn't just wipe them off and shove them in some sand dune. Granted, he made them wander around for a long time, but you can tell He's a patient God.
He must be. He created the entire fucking universe and then waited 15 billion years or so just to tell a bunch of desert dwelling savages how to behave themselves.

Of course that becomes even more amusing when you consider the fact that the behaviors he instructed them to adopt are barbaric and completely unfitting for civilized human beings.


There are tons of other qualities I could point out. You don't have to look too far to find them.
Except you still have not named a single quality that tells us what he is rather than how he is, nor have you demonstrated how you arrived at knowledge of that quality.


(With these things being said, I'd like to state that I really just don't care if you're convinced about what I have to say. I mean, seriously...whatever. But I do like to share how I think and feel and why I feel what I do....so, I'm not going to get into some huge debate about how I should change how I feel, just so yeh know. )

As for your comment about God....well, to me, I'd say, "Well, lulz, without God...or A God, we prolly wouldn't be here.
There are plenty of ways for life to happen without a God. It did happen without a God.

Kodos
01-04-2011, 12:02 AM
THIS NEW FORUM IS SO AWFUL I HAD TO BREAK THE POST IN TWO FFFFFF

At least, He would have hand His hand in something, or been aware." Not that I'm not saying that life couldn't be created on its own, but I'm sure God would be in the creation process, at least if it was important, somehow, whatever that happens to be.
What.


Plus, it would have to be on a planet, besides ours, that would have perfect conditions. Since we can't see all of the universe, we can't see all the possible inhabitable planets.
Any planet is inhabitable, theoretically speaking. Life adapts to the environment, not the other way around. The water fits the puddle, the hole does not fit the water.


We're always searching for proof of life, even at simply the cellular level, and maybe, someday, that will help going towards proving more of the existence of God.
See my statement about definitions.


Faith doesn't mean there isn't an evidence, either.
Yes, it does. That is literally what it means. Belief in spite of absence of evidence.


I mean, there are some things you just can't prove at this point of this planet's development.
Like? Name one thing reasonable people believe that is not either a necessary fiction for communication and interaction (like the refutation of solipsism) or based on some form of logical reasoning.

I'm tired and sleepy so apologies if this post is less clear than usual.

Blue_Dragon
01-04-2011, 12:40 AM
^Maybe Rio knows a way to allow longer responses, so the debate doesn't have to be interrupted.


I agree with the logical process of finding proof before expecting everyone to believe in things and writing something out as fact. Therefore, what I believe, I'm not going to debate because I have not proof and it's pointless to argue cause I'd look like an ass (not saying others here look like asses for arguing their point.)

I just want to leave some a thought I have, and if it gets shot down, so be it. I'm okay with that.

One thing I always keep in mind, is that although mankind has discovered a lot, but there's still a lot out there we have not discovered. For instance, before we had the technology to go deep deep sea diving, there were all kinds of species we did not know existed. My question: because we had not discovered them yet, does that mean they didn't exist prior to discovery? I use this, because it could be we simply haven't the capability yet as humans to discern whether or not their is/are (a) god (lowercase intentionality.) (that's just how I feel, because something hasn't been proven yet, doesn't mean it doesn't necessarily exist.

Having said that, for the purpose of a debate on whether or not something exists, you really do need proof.

Kodos
01-04-2011, 01:04 AM
It is absolutely within the realm of possibility that certain beings that satisfy certain definitions of the word "god" exist. However most of these beings are improbable in the extreme since they are said to be extremely powerful and take an active interest in the lives of humans. If a being has the will and the means to bring about something and that thing does not happen, clearly one or both of the premises must be wrong. Most concepts of God are beings that supposedly desire to be known. If a literally godlike being fails to prove its existence within some 4000 years of human history, that says something. Absence of evidence does become evidence of absence after a certain period of time.
Thing is, lots of things are possible. There is very little that is actually impossible in the literal sense, and yet we do not believe them. It is impossible to disprove most things so the only reasonable and sane way to behave is by assuming they do not exist until you have been given sufficient cause to believe otherwise. Very few atheists truly believe all concepts of god are known to be false. It's only an amusing irony that the most common concepts of him - the Judeo-Christian ones - are demonstrably and provably false.

The position of atheism towards most deities is simply "I don't see that." Atheism is an innately reactive position. The theist makes a claim; "there is a God" and the atheist reacts to that claim; "I do not see sufficient cause to believe that statement."

Fenn
01-04-2011, 08:17 PM
This is a bit fuzzy, I admit but that's because god and God can mean many different things. I'd argue that it's a sort of intuitive thing. It's one thing to say Yahweh or Zeus or Thor or even Inari are gods, it's another to say the Strong Nuclear Force or a Chair is a god. At the very least I'd argue a God is a being and ergo must be something with consciousness and will.

I said that if something is fundamentally unknowable it may as well not exist. Existence is defined by qualities. To know something exists is to know at least one quality of that thing. If you cannot claim knowledge of even one quality of a thing then you cannot claim to know that the thing exists. While I do believe that the universe is ultimately more or less fully comprehensible - in principle - to human minds, I'm not saying that ultimate knowledge will be attained. But it is not necessary. If you can't name a single quality of something that means that you literally have no idea what you are even talking about. Name one thing that reasonable people believe in - besides the divine - which they also claim to be utterly ineffable. I am aware of nothing.

Well if we are talking about conscious beings than...no. I don't believe that. However, I think God might actually be a part of scientific knowledge.

What many Christians might call acts of God others will call coincedences. In fact many times when unexpected events occur people look for a reason, but really there doesn't have to be. Or does there? Studies and research have shown that things which seem completely random at first sight, like the stock market or insect movements, actually involve deeply complex patterns. In fact, much of science involves searching for the causes of events and occurences. Could what many call God actually be the undiscovered rules and patterns which dictate the actions and reactions of people to situations and each other, a sort of "scientific karma," if you will?

I'm not going to pretend I have studied this idea, but I am simply trying to evaluate the plausibility of this idea.

Kodos
01-04-2011, 08:29 PM
Well if we are talking about conscious beings than...no. I don't believe that. However, I think God might actually be a part of scientific knowledge.
If God is simply some force of nature then it is silly to call it God since that is not what the term implies to most English speakers.


What many Christians might call acts of God others will call coincedences. In fact many times when unexpected events occur people look for a reason, but really there doesn't have to be. Or does there?
By definition coincidences are unrelated. Also just like how our brains are structured to find faces in things, leading to paraidola, they are also structured to find patterns. As a general rule living as a simple hunter-gatherer it is more important to recognize patterns and faces, even if it means being overzealous, than to fail to recognize these things. This is part of why the God fallacy is so universal. It is in the nature of the human mind to see patterns and causal relations even where there are none.


Studies and research have shown that things which seem completely random at first sight, like the stock market or insect movements, actually involve deeply complex patterns. In fact, much of science involves searching for the causes of events and occurences.
Yes.


Could what many call God actually be the undiscovered rules and patterns which dictate the actions and reactions of people to situations and each other, a sort of "scientific karma," if you will?
We already have that and it's called the Standard Model and/or Causality.


I'm not going to pretend I have studied this idea, but I am simply trying to evaluate the plausibility of this idea.
Why call that idea God when that is dishonest and furthermore not religious. You are simply talking about causality and physics.

Delphinus
01-05-2011, 02:48 AM
Kodos how can you claim to be a dystheistic atheist when you, like I, worship Our Lady? How can you claim to be atheist in face of Her glorious Bust?

Kodos
01-05-2011, 12:30 PM
Because it's very improper for a Discordian to be an atheist, duh.

Hail Eris!

Sawyer
01-05-2011, 02:57 PM
Regarding the title:

Fifty shekels of silver and a forced marriage seem pretty comparable to the 18,000ish charge for sexual assault in the UK. Granted I'm not sure of the current exchange rate for shekels of silver to sterling. But as Bible justice goes...

Kodos
01-05-2011, 03:13 PM
Are you trying to argue to me that the United Kingdom forces rape victims to marry their attacker? Furthermore I am unfamiliar with UK law so maybe this does happen, but are you also telling me that rapists in the UK are not forced to serve any sort of prison time and/or counseling and simply pay a fine and are immediately released into the general public, possibly after having just having had a forced marriage with their victim?

And I do know for a fact that there are no legal situations in which a rape victim is executed for having been victimized in the UK.

Sawyer
01-05-2011, 04:23 PM
Haha. I'm certainly telling you that there is a walk-out bail of around £18,000 in the UK, depending on the case. Google tells me it's $25,000 in Canada. Granted this comes with a one-way ticket to the sexual offender's list. Whether this involves counselling of some kind or not, I have no idea.

Surely you realise I was partly in jest, but even so: I'd rather pay $25,000 and have some counselling than pay 50 shekels of silver and be stuck with a girl who would probably, quite rightly, hate me to hell.

Kodos
01-05-2011, 04:46 PM
It's not about what you, the hypothetical rapist, wants. I'm all for rehabilitation and believe the purpose of prison should be the rehabilitate criminal individuals if possible and, if nothing else, to protect society from further predation. That said it's not a question of what the criminal wants. It's a question of what is best for society at large. Marrying a victim to her rapist is fucking barbaric beyond words. Killing her is probably more civilized, at least that doesn't send the message of "You know when your rapist made you into an object and took your against your will turning you into his property? He was right! Have fun you dumb bitch!"

Fenn
01-05-2011, 05:43 PM
Why call that idea God when that is dishonest and furthermore not religious. You are simply talking about causality and physics.

Err...um...

What I'm trying to say, I think, is that there may be undiscovered forces/scientifically comprehensible concepts that have been confused for "God." But I don't even have examples to list. Basically I need to figure out what I'm trying to say and how to say it.

Sawyer
01-05-2011, 06:04 PM
It's not about what you, the hypothetical rapist, wants.

It's all about what I, the hypothetical rapist, wants. We're talking about severity of punishment here; justice, and the feelings of my victim (for which I probably don't care), have nothing to do with it. Having a massive fine and being forced to marry someone is certainly "a big deal". More of a "big deal" I would argue, than a $25,000 fine.


I'm all for rehabilitation and believe the purpose of prison should be the rehabilitate criminal individuals if possible and, if nothing else, to protect society from further predation.

*thumbs up*


Marrying a victim to her rapist is fucking barbaric beyond words. Killing her is probably more civilized, at least that doesn't send the message of "You know when your rapist made you into an object and took your against your will turning you into his property? He was right! Have fun you dumb bitch!"

Beside the point. You're saying that back in bible-justice-day getting raped sucked for the victim, but "wasn't a big deal" for the actual rapist. I agree with the first part, obviously. The second part is where I disagree. It certainly WAS a big deal for the actual rapist - even to the extent of being more of a punishment than a £25,000 fine, and counselling.

For society, which is worse? Bible-time. Obviously. But was it "not a big deal" in Bible-time? No. It was a terrible deal for both rapist and rapee.

But this argument feels off-topic and pointless. I think you see where I'm coming from.

Kodos
01-05-2011, 06:19 PM
Err...um...

What I'm trying to say, I think, is that there may be undiscovered forces/scientifically comprehensible concepts that have been confused for "God." But I don't even have examples to list. Basically I need to figure out what I'm trying to say and how to say it.
What acts or actions are you attributing to God? What are these yet to be discovered scientific forces or reactions going to explain?

Also of course that's happened before. People believed lightning or thunder was the result of the anger of the gods. Now we know better. Each advance in science is another nail in the coffin of God. Gods live in the dark places and feed on ignorance. Where ever there is an unknown people can - and do - point and say "there is God!" That is why science is so dangerous to religion. Every fact no matter how great or how tiny is one less place for God to hide.


It's all about what I, the hypothetical rapist, wants. We're talking about severity of punishment here; justice, and the feelings of my victim (for which I probably don't care), have nothing to do with it.
What? We are talking about how the Bible is a monstrous book written by evil savages who believe that making rape victims become the property of their attacker. Justice and the feelings of the victim have everything to do with it.


Having a massive fine and being forced to marry someone is certainly "a big deal". More of a "big deal" I would argue, than a $25,000 fine.
A woman is property in the Bible. The fine is unpleasant, the bride not so much. If you are the sort of person who rapes other people I imagine you would enjoy the thought of having what amounts to a slave that you can also fuck whenever you want.


Beside the point. You're saying that back in bible-justice-day getting raped sucked for the victim, but "wasn't a big deal" for the actual rapist. I agree with the first part, obviously. The second part is where I disagree. It certainly WAS a big deal for the actual rapist - even to the extent of being more of a punishment than a £25,000 fine, and counselling.
You're insane.


For society, which is worse? Bible-time. Obviously. But was it "not a big deal" in Bible-time? No. It was a terrible deal for both rapist and rapee.
Morals are morals. If something is or is not morally wrong it is always that way. Context may depend on factors, yes, but temporal factors are not one of them. If it is wrong for a society to force rape victims to marry their attackers then it is equally wrong to do it in 2010 CE or BCE.


But this argument feels off-topic and pointless. I think you see where I'm coming from.
No and you are just coming across like a Christian and/or rape apologist. The two are often one and the same. It's amazing how often people who claim high morals will say things along the lines of "Bitch was asking for it wearing that slutty dress."

Sawyer
01-05-2011, 06:50 PM
What? We are talking about how the Bible is a monstrous book written by evil savages who believe that making rape victims become the property of their attacker. Justice and the feelings of the victim have everything to do with it.


YOU are talking about how the Bible is a monstrous book written by evil savages etc. I am talking about how it is incorrect to say that raping someone was not a big deal according to the Bible.

I say again. 50 shekels of silver is a lot of fucking money. Think about it. How many rape convicts do you reckon could pay this humble fee? Few. What do you think would happen to them if they couldn't pay? My bet's on some kind of execution. The passage is clearly a get-out clause for the rich twat who rapes a peasant. You find laws like these across human history.

"Hey Caecilius, this chap raped a girl the other night."
"What does the law say?"
"The weight of her in silver for the father... but this guy has no cash."
"Better kill him then."

"Laws" like this exist, as I said, for the sole purpose of getting a bawdy prince out of trouble.


A woman is property in the Bible. The fine is unpleasant, the bride not so much. If you are the sort of person who rapes other people I imagine you would enjoy the thought of having what amounts to a slave that you can also fuck whenever you want.

To go down the road of trying to argue that the Bible created sexual inequality is annoying. The Bible didn't create these inequalities, they were around far, far, earlier.


You're insane.

AD HOMINEM!


Morals are morals. If something is or is not morally wrong it is always that way. Context may depend on factors, yes, but temporal factors are not one of them. If it is wrong for a society to force rape victims to marry their attackers then it is equally wrong to do it in 2010 CE or BCE.

"Context may depend on factors, yes, but temporal factors are not one of them." - Wut?

Shit gets real when people start waving words like "Right" and "Wrong" about. I'm not all that convinced by "morals" in general. Sure things like this can be nice or not nice, but can they be right or wrong?


No and you are just coming across like a Christian and/or rape apologist. The two are often one and the same. It's amazing how often people who claim high morals will say things along the lines of "Bitch was asking for it wearing that slutty dress."

I claim no high morals and I am no Christian.

Kodos
01-05-2011, 07:21 PM
YOU are talking about how the Bible is a monstrous book written by evil savages etc. I am talking about how it is incorrect to say that raping someone was not a big deal according to the Bible.
When the penalty for rape is less than the penalty imposed upon a child for disobedience I don't think anyone but you would make this argument. It's not a big deal because disobedient children receive a harsher punishment than some rapists, according to the Biblical code of "justice."


I say again. 50 shekels of silver is a lot of fucking money. Think about it. How many rape convicts do you reckon could pay this humble fee? Few. What do you think would happen to them if they couldn't pay? My bet's on some kind of execution. The passage is clearly a get-out clause for the rich twat who rapes a peasant. You find laws like these across human history.
The possibility of paying a fine is still a less harsh sentence than instant death with no questions asked.


"Hey Caecilius, this chap raped a girl the other night."
"What does the law say?"
"The weight of her in silver for the father... but this guy has no cash."
"Better kill him then."
As opposed to
"Hey, Ezekial, Yeshua's children are rude and do not listen to him so we are helping stone them to death later."
"Awesome."


"Laws" like this exist, as I said, for the sole purpose of getting a bawdy prince out of trouble.
You know, I forgot to ask. I admit ignorance of the exact worth of a shekel, please show me what source you used to arrive at the conversion into modern money. I'm not necessarily saying you're lying, I'm genuinely curious.


To go down the road of trying to argue that the Bible created sexual inequality is annoying. The Bible didn't create these inequalities, they were around far, far, earlier.
Please show me when I have argued that the origin of patriarchy and misogyny is to be found in the Bible?


AD HOMINEM!
Not really. An ad hominem is when the premises are about the person and the conclusion about the argument. I'm saying your insane - my premises and conclusions are all about you. Rape in the Bible has less harsh penalties than fucking being a disobedient child. Also I asked and checked - the UK does jail rapists, usually without bail, and I understand that they may even receive life imprisonments. So you'll have to try harder if you want to compare this sort of barbarism to the practices of any civilized nation.


"Context may depend on factors, yes, but temporal factors are not one of them." - Wut?
If it is wrong to do X then it is always wrong to do X regardless of the time. If it is wrong for me to force a woman to have sex with me against her will then it is wrong for me to do this thing at 2 PM, 3 AM, 2010 CE, 2031 CE, and 2010 BCE. Whatever factors an ethical system does or does not consider to be valid in deciding the morality of an action, the time in which an action occurred cannot be one of them.


Shit gets real when people start waving words like "Right" and "Wrong" about. I'm not all that convinced by "morals" in general. Sure things like this can be nice or not nice, but can they be right or wrong?
Lucky for you the discussion at hand has only two very simple moral questions. I'd like you to answer them.
1. Is rape morally wrong?
2. Is it morally wrong to force a rape victim to marry her attacker.

Sawyer
01-05-2011, 08:23 PM
Wait. Where are you getting the child-stoning thing from? Are you purposefully trying to be argumentative or are you just completely misunderstanding my point?


When the penalty for rape is less than the penalty imposed upon a child for disobedience I don't think anyone but you would make this argument. It's not a big deal because disobedient children receive a harsher punishment than some rapists, according to the Biblical code of "justice."

We're talking about this on a relative scale here. Yes, I am not saying that there have never existed harsher punishments than those for the Biblical way of dealing with rape. I never said that. I am saying that all things considered, the Biblical way for dealing with rape can not be considered "not a big deal."


The possibility of paying a fine is still a less harsh sentence than instant death with no questions asked.

Yes. "Give me $10,000,000 and a golden toilet or die" is an infinitely better option than "die."


You know, I forgot to ask. I admit ignorance of the exact worth of a shekel, please show me what source you used to arrive at the conversion into modern money. I'm not necessarily saying you're lying, I'm genuinely curious.

I admit. Guesswork mainly. A Silver Shekel is just a silver coin. In terms of nowadays silver, hardly anything. Maybe a couple of quid. In terms of thenadays silver, alot more. I don't really think it was a simple currency either. People were taking denarii and all sorts. Taking into account the change in living standards, the massive inequality of wealth etc. I don't think it's too far a jump to reckon that it was unpayable by most.


Please show me when I have argued that the origin of patriarchy and misogyny is to be found in the Bible?

Alas, I cannot. I have all too often heard the statement, my apprehension got the better of me.


Not really. An ad hominem is when the premises are about the person and the conclusion about the argument. I'm saying your insane - my premises and conclusions are all about you. Rape in the Bible has less harsh penalties than fucking being a disobedient child. Also I asked and checked - the UK does jail rapists, usually without bail, and I understand that they may even receive life imprisonments. So you'll have to try harder if you want to compare this sort of barbarism to the practices of any civilized nation.

First of all, provide some hard evidence for your "check."

Fine. Not an ad hominem. Simply unnecessary gruffness. And what? Life imprisonment for rape? In the UK? No. Simply no. Life imprisonment for murder and high treason, nothing else. Obviously there are exceptions...

The official line of the UK government on rape is this "Rape is so serious that a prosecution is almost certainly required in the public interest."

Such is our legal system. In reality, this means that 1,000,001 different things happen. Mainly fines, short sentences and/or rehabilitation for first timers.


If it is wrong to do X then it is always wrong to do X regardless of the time. If it is wrong for me to force a woman to have sex with me against her will then it is wrong for me to do this thing at 2 PM, 3 AM, 2010 CE, 2031 CE, and 2010 BCE. Whatever factors an ethical system does or does not consider to be valid in deciding the morality of an action, the time in which an action occurred cannot be one of them.

Ergh. Rights and Wrongs. I put it to you that it is never wrong to do anything. Right and Wrong are human constructs, not physical laws.


Lucky for you the discussion at hand has only two very simple moral questions. I'd like you to answer them.
1. Is rape morally wrong?
2. Is it morally wrong to force a rape victim to marry her attacker.

I will say this. Rape is nasty. Forcing a rape victim to marry her attacker is nasty. From the best of my reasoning, these things are bad. But are they WRONG? That ain't something I can say.

But what do you intend to prove by those questions anyway? They are entirely unrelated to what I originally brought up. I don't even know what we're yelling about!

Kodos
01-05-2011, 08:42 PM
Beside the point. You're saying that back in bible-justice-day getting raped sucked for the victim, but "wasn't a big deal" for the actual rapist.
I'm saying that the Bible - and by extent the fictional character of the Judeo-Christian God - do not consider rape to be a big deal.


I agree with the first part, obviously. The second part is where I disagree. It certainly WAS a big deal for the actual rapist - even to the extent of being more of a punishment than a £25,000 fine, and counselling.
You cannot make the argument that rape is a big deal when a society punishes it less harshly than it punishes a disobedient child. Your argument is wrong. The same Bible that says rapists should sometimes marry their victims and pay a fine is the same Bible that says disobediant children should be stoned to death. Adulteresses too. I don't think you can say rape is a big deal to a culture when that same culture punishes it less harshly than it punishes adultery and childish disobedience.


For society, which is worse? Bible-time. Obviously. But was it "not a big deal" in Bible-time? No. It was a terrible deal for both rapist and rapee.
Not really. See above. A rapist would only be put to death if his victim was betrothed. Otherwise it was a fine and a marriage. An adulteress or a disobedient child - according to the Biblical penal code - was always punished with death.


But this argument feels off-topic and pointless. I think you see where I'm coming from.
Not really.


Wait. Where are you getting the child-stoning thing from? Are you purposefully trying to be argumentative or are you just completely misunderstanding my point?
Deuteronomy 21:18.


We're talking about this on a relative scale here. Yes, I am not saying that there have never existed harsher punishments than those for the Biblical way of dealing with rape. I never said that. I am saying that all things considered, the Biblical way for dealing with rape can not be considered "not a big deal."
I disagree. The punishments for most other crimes is death. The punishment for rape is death but only in some situations, other times it's just a hefty fine and a marriage. Clearly when a society punishes something less harshly than other things it probably considers that thing less horrible than those other things. When you consider how large the list of crimes with harsher penalties than rape is in the Bible, then it becomes clear that the authors did not consider rape to be that big of a deal.


Yes. "Give me $10,000,000 and a golden toilet or die" is an infinitely better option than "die."
Yes.


I admit. Guesswork mainly. A Silver Shekel is just a silver coin. In terms of nowadays silver, hardly anything. Maybe a couple of quid. In terms of thenadays silver, alot more. I don't really think it was a simple currency either. People were taking denarii and all sorts. Taking into account the change in living standards, the massive inequality of wealth etc. I don't think it's too far a jump to reckon that it was unpayable by most.
A quick google check gave me a unreliable but plausible sounding answer of 200 days worth of labor. It's entirely reasonable to assume that if a rapist was unable to pay the fine that, rather then being executed, he would probably be put to work at the victim's household until he had paid his debt. This sounds more plausible given other precedents in the Bible than simply executing the debtor.


First of all, provide some hard evidence for your "check."
Delphinus and Sean, two UK citizens.
Fine. Not an ad hominem. Simply unnecessary gruffness. And what? Life imprisonment for rape? In the UK? No. Simply no. Life imprisonment for murder and high treason, nothing else. Obviously there are exceptions...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rape_in_English_law#Sentence


The official line of the UK government on rape is this "Rape is so serious that a prosecution is almost certainly required in the public interest."

Such is our legal system. In reality, this means that 1,000,001 different things happen. Mainly fines, short sentences and/or rehabilitation for first timers.
Doesn't matter much. I'd argue you could not even punish rapists except by verbal reprimand and you'd still be less barbaric than marrying the woman to the offender.


Ergh. Rights and Wrongs. I put it to you that it is never wrong to do anything. Right and Wrong are human constructs, not physical laws.
Yes. I agree. That does not absolve you from answering the question. Morals go away when we stop believing in them, yes. But you still have opinions. Do you consider rape wrong? Do you consider it wrong to marry a rape victim to her attacker? Stop avoiding the questions and answer them.


I will say this. Rape is nasty. Forcing a rape victim to marry her attacker is nasty. From the best of my reasoning, these things are bad. But are they WRONG? That ain't something I can say.
Yes it is. Right and wrong are value judgments. As a sapient being you are qualified to make value judgments. Do you judge those two actions right or wrong.


But what do you intend to prove by those questions anyway? They are entirely unrelated to what I originally brought up. I don't even know what we're yelling about!
You are coming across like a rape apologist. I am offering you a quick out. You are refusing to participate in that out and in doing so make the assumption that you are a rape apologist seem more and more likely. You are digging a hole for yourself.

Delphinus
01-05-2011, 08:43 PM
Ergh. Rights and Wrongs. I put it to you that it is never wrong to do anything. Right and Wrong are human constructs, not physical laws.
I agree, but not being a raving nihilist I'll offer the following argument:

Right and wrong are merely words for actions that are approved of or disapproved of correspondingly by the moral system under which they are described. The moral system we are following when we talk about rape being wrong because it causes significant trauma to the victim is simply that of empathy. If you can empathise with a rape victim, then you can understand why a moral system based on empathy would disapprove of rape: it's emotionally destructive, immensely ego-shattering, and can cause the victim to hate their own body in some cases. Unless you would will those experiences on others and claim they're enjoyable, it's your duty as a follower of the moral system of empathy to attempt to prevent rape through any means that are justified by the ends. Of course, one way to prevent rape ever occurring is to destroy the human race, but the means, in this case, will cause more emotional distress than what you wish to eliminate.

If you're a sociopath, however, the moral system of empathy probably doesn't mean much to you, so sociopaths should feel free to label rape as right.

Kodos
01-05-2011, 08:47 PM
Exactly. I acknowledge there is no universal law that proclaims rape to be wrong (the prevalence of it even in other animals is evidence enough of this) I do, however, consider it to be a vile act that is completely unacceptable by my moral system. Right and wrong are value judgments like opinions. If someone asks you what you want for breakfast you do not say "Well pancakes and waffles are basically questions of taste and I am unqualified to make judgments so I'll just starve."

Of course that's a bad example since pancakes are objectively better than waffles.

Sawyer
01-05-2011, 09:13 PM
Delphinus and Sean, two UK citizens.

I would have been more impressed if you gave me reference to two stuffed monkeys. But seriously. Really? Reaaaally?

Well Bill, Ted, and Harry (THREE UK citizens) say I'm right. This is hardly hard evidence.

RE: The Wiki Link. All this means is a rapist can be convicted for life. It doesn't make it the norm. Again, look at the official sentencing manual (which the wiki itself links) All of this stuff is just done on convention.


Stop avoiding the questions and answer them.

I already have. I say that rape is a bad thing, that shouldn't be carried out. It's logically wrong and unfair. I also say that it is NOT morally wrong. I maintain that morals should be irrelevant. I find that after googling "discordianism", which you were chatting about earlier in the thread , I am provided with a more poetic version of what I'm trying to say.

"The Aneristic Principle is that of apparent order; the Eristic Principle is that of apparent disorder. Both order and disorder are man made concepts and are artificial divisions of pure chaos, which is a level deeper than is the level of distinction making.
With our concept-making apparatus called "the brain" we look at reality through the ideas-about-reality which our cultures give us.
The ideas-about-reality are mistakenly labeled "reality" and unenlightened people are forever perplexed by the fact that other people, especially other cultures, see "reality" differently.
It is only the ideas-about-reality which differ. Real (capital-T) True reality is a level deeper than is the level of concept.
We look at the world through windows on which have been drawn grids (concepts). Different philosophies use different grids. A culture is a group of people with rather similar grids. Through a window we view chaos, and relate it to the points on our grid, and thereby understand it. The order is in the grid. That is the Aneristic Principle.
Western philosophy is traditionally concerned with contrasting one grid with another grid, and amending grids in hopes of finding a perfect one that will account for all reality and will, hence, (say unenlightened westerners) be True. This is illusory; it is what we Erisians call the Aneristic Illusion. Some grids can be more useful than others, some more beautiful than others, some more pleasant than others, etc., but none can be more True than any other.
Disorder is simply unrelated information viewed through some particular grid. But, like "relation", no-relation is a concept. Male, like female, is an idea about sex. To say that male-ness is "absence of female-ness", or vice versa, is a matter of definition and metaphysically arbitrary. The artificial concept of no-relation is the Eristic Principle.
The belief that "order is true" and disorder is false or somehow wrong, is the Aneristic Illusion. To say the same of disorder, is the Eristic Illusion.
The point is that (little-t) truth is a matter of definition relative to the grid one is using at the moment, and that (capital-T) Truth, metaphysical reality, is irrelevant to grids entirely. Pick a grid, and through it some chaos appears ordered and some appears disordered. Pick another grid, and the same chaos will appear differently ordered and disordered.
Reality is the original Rorschach. Verily! So much for all that."

Weird shit.


Yes it is. Right and wrong are value judgments. As a sapient being you are qualified to make value judgments.

For myself yes. Not on a universal scale.


You are coming across like a rape apologist. I am offering you a quick out. You are refusing to participate in that out and in doing so make the assumption that you are a rape apologist seem more and more likely. You are digging a hole for yourself.

Clearly. It would be entirely reasonable and intelligent of you to label me a "rape apologist" on the basis of my last few posts. I make the claim that you are breaking clause 2; subsection II of the thread rules, which, you yourself wrote.

Anyway. I really do feel we have worn this "topic" into the ground. Unless you feel differently, time for a change of pace?

EDIT:
Yeah. The key word you use is MY. You cannot universally claim that pancakes are better than waffles. Although again, bad example as pancakes are objectively better. But you get my drift.

Superdooperphailmachine
01-05-2011, 09:23 PM
On a serious note Belgian waffles are the shit. There shape allows for them to hold the topping in it's little squares and so it is possible to flavour it in sections, if you did this with a pancake the toppings would spill over each other causing a mess.

Also, if found guilty they generally do get the prison sentence. Unless the judge is some kind of dick in which case he does not deserve his job.

Delphinus
01-06-2011, 05:20 AM
Well Bill, Ted, and Harry (THREE UK citizens) say I'm right. This is hardly hard evidence.
Hey, I think I know the norm in my own country.


I already have. I say that rape is a bad thing, that shouldn't be carried out. It's logically wrong and unfair. I also say that it is NOT morally wrong. I maintain that morals should be irrelevant. I find that after googling "discordianism", which you were chatting about earlier in the thread , I am provided with a more poetic version of what I'm trying to say.

1) When our morals are based on the following form:
DESIRED GOAL (Happiness, hedonism; freedom, liberalism; individual power, social Darwinism)
MEANS TO OBTAIN GOAL (If useful, 'good'; if useless, 'bad')
The difference between 'good' and 'evil' acts is purely logical. If the action will further your aims, do it; if not, don't. When we base a system on empathy, we are basing it, albeit indirectly, on a form of rational altruism, although it could more cynically be interpreted as a form of egoistic hedonism (the pain of others makes me feel unhappy: being unhappy is something I don't enjoy: I will attempt to prevent the pain of others). That is to say, logically wrong and morally wrong are synonymous in this case.

2) You fail at interpreting Discordianism. Read Principia Discordia to see the fnords in moral argument, not to destroy fnord! the whole basis of it.


Yeah. The key word you use is MY. You cannot universally claim that pancakes are better than waffles. Although again, bad example as pancakes are objectively better. But you get my drift.
Under a particular moral system, provided we obey the rules of logic, we should always reach the same conclusion regarding pancakes. Thus the argument is not "Pancakes are always better than waffles." but "Under the pancakist moral system, pancakes are always better than waffles."

Fenn
01-06-2011, 05:03 PM
^Oh my God it ends there? Total cliffhanger.

Well this is leading right into what I was going to ask (and some people already answered it): If no God exists, where do morals come from?

Arashi500
01-06-2011, 05:08 PM
social standards, your environment, and upraising.

Kodos
01-06-2011, 08:49 PM
^Oh my God it ends there? Total cliffhanger.

Well this is leading right into what I was going to ask (and some people already answered it): If no God exists, where do morals come from?
From logic or reason? It is a undeniable fact that the existence or non-existence of God is a meaningless question insofar as ethics are concerned. Socrates refuted the Divine Command Theory of ethics completely. I

Alexander_Hamilton
01-06-2011, 10:12 PM
Morality can't come from God, or else it has no meaning.

If morality is just whatever God says is wrong, then God could have just as easily chosen different things to be considered immoral and moral. But it is the qualities of a particular act that makes it immoral or moral, not whether or not God disapproves.

Kodos
01-06-2011, 10:50 PM
That's part of it. Basically Socrate's refutation boils down into the fact that there are two options for God's decisions regarding morality and that both of them lead to the necessary conclusion that Divine Command is logically worthless.
The first option is that God's moral commands are based on whim. If this is the case then things are constantly subject to change and in flux, and ergo no moral system can be said to exist or be able to be known since there is no underlying system. What is wrong today may be right tomorrow. If God's commands are fiat, than everything is up in the air.
If God's choices are based not on fiat but on some sort of reasoning on his part, then it is those reasons, and not God himself, that is the source of morality. Ergo whether or not God exists is a meaningless question as far as ethics go.

Delphinus
01-07-2011, 01:05 PM
Is it desirable or even necessary for a moral agent to be a sociopath? If you have the capacity to feel empathy, you're likely to have your decisions influenced by this empathy rather than what is the best course of action, whereas if you have no capacity or desire to feel it you can be dedicated to a moral course of action not based on empathy, which is inherently flawed as a philosophy even though it's the default.

Sawyer
01-07-2011, 04:12 PM
Hey, I think I know the norm in my own country.


I think you don't. Of reported rape cases in the UK only 7.3% (2008-9) end up with full conviction (7 years+), the rest are either found not-guilty, or charged with minor offenses. FACT. (http://www.justice.gov.uk/anonymity-rape-research-report.pdf)

But seriously. Enough with the rape thing.


1) When our morals are based on the following form:
DESIRED GOAL (Happiness, hedonism; freedom, liberalism; individual power, social Darwinism)
MEANS TO OBTAIN GOAL (If useful, 'good'; if useless, 'bad')
The difference between 'good' and 'evil' acts is purely logical. If the action will further your aims, do it; if not, don't. When we base a system on empathy, we are basing it, albeit indirectly, on a form of rational altruism, although it could more cynically be interpreted as a form of egoistic hedonism (the pain of others makes me feel unhappy: being unhappy is something I don't enjoy: I will attempt to prevent the pain of others). That is to say, logically wrong and morally wrong are synonymous in this case.


I think this calls for a definition of morals; but by your definition, I essentially agree with what you're saying. I'm just defining morals differently.


2) You fail at interpreting Discordianism. Read Principia Discordia to see the fnords in moral argument, not to destroy fnord! the whole basis of it.

Mhmm. You crazy cultists!


Under a particular moral system, provided we obey the rules of logic, we should always reach the same conclusion regarding pancakes. Thus the argument is not "Pancakes are always better than waffles." but "Under the pancakist moral system, pancakes are always better than waffles."

Again. You are referring to morals as a loose synonym of logic. I define morals as (false) fixed principles over the nature of Good and Evil. A true moral code should be both finite and universal. If you claim to be a Christian, but believe the Christian moral code is a subjective/relative thing, I don't think you can call yourself a Christian anymore. To me, morals imply objectivity. If you agree that "morals" can alter in relation to circumstances, or that they are dependent on following a particular code, you are no longer dealing with morals.


Well this is leading right into what I was going to ask (and some people already answered it): If no God exists, where do morals come from?

Again, it depends on what you define as "morals". For the sake of argument:

"In its "normative" sense, morality refers directly to what is right and wrong, regardless of what specific individuals think. It could be defined as the conduct of the ideal "moral" person in a certain situation. This usage of the term is characterized by "definitive" statements such as "That act is immoral" rather than descriptive ones such as "Many believe that act is immoral.""

I would argue that no such thing as a "moral", in this sense, exists.


Is it desirable or even necessary for a moral agent to be a sociopath? If you have the capacity to feel empathy, you're likely to have your decisions influenced by this empathy rather than what is the best course of action,

Empathy is based on an awareness of social justice. Social justice is formulated as a logical necessity and desirability. Therefore, basing an action on empathy, can be, and often is, completely logical.


...whereas if you have no capacity or desire to feel it you can be dedicated to a moral course of action not based on empathy, which is inherently flawed as a philosophy even though it's the default.

Not sure what you're trying to say here...

On a different note...


It is a undeniable fact that the existence or non-existence of God is a meaningless question insofar as ethics are concerned[snip]... Ergo whether or not God exists is a meaningless question as far as ethics go.

Not so. The definition of the Judeo-Christian (and many other forms of) deity, requires the existence of a universal, objective, divine sense of Right and Wrong. AKA: Morals. To refute that such a thing exists directly challenges the existence of such a deity. So by disproving the existence of such "morals", we are indirectly disproving the notion of many classical deities.

Delphinus
01-07-2011, 04:57 PM
I think you don't. Of reported rape cases in the UK only 7.3% (2008-9) end up with full conviction (7 years+), the rest are either found not-guilty, or charged with minor offenses. FACT. (http://www.justice.gov.uk/anonymity-rape-research-report.pdf)
That's reported cases, not cases ending in conviction. Stop twisting my words.


Empathy is based on an awareness of social justice.
No it isn't. Empathy is based on feeling a bond with other people that passes their emotions onto you to some extent. Feeling sad when those around you are upset is empathy. Feeling sad because people have less privileges than you is white guilt.


Not sure what you're trying to say here...
A sociopath can dedicate themselves to a moral code without having feeling remorse or guilt because of empathy. Empathy makes you benefit those around you or similar to you to at the expense of others, whereas following a moral code can do far more on the grand scale at the expense of those. Therefore empathy can be an obstacle in the course of following a moral code and sociopaths, defined as those who lack empathy or consideration for others' emotions, are likely to be more 'moral' than those who are burdened with empathy.

Sawyer
01-07-2011, 05:25 PM
That's reported cases, not cases ending in conviction. Stop twisting my words.

Huh? The statistic is that 7.3% of reported rape cases end in conviction. It is both reported cases, and cases ending conviction.


No it isn't. Empathy is based on feeling a bond with other people that passes their emotions onto you to some extent. Feeling sad when those around you are upset is empathy. Feeling sad because people have less privileges than you is white guilt.

A sociopath can dedicate themselves to a moral code without having feeling remorse or guilt because of empathy. Empathy makes you benefit those around you or similar to you to at the expense of others, whereas following a moral code can do far more on the grand scale at the expense of those. Therefore empathy can be an obstacle in the course of following a moral code and sociopaths, defined as those who lack empathy or consideration for others' emotions, are likely to be more 'moral' than those who are burdened with empathy.

You are confusing empathy with sympathy. Empathy is the ability to share emotions through consciousness. It comes about as a result of recognition of similar social/emotional circumstances to ones that you have experienced yourself. It is based on the notion of equality and social justice. "This sad person is like me when I'm sad. Good people shouldn't be sad. This is unfair ):"

Sympathy not only includes empathizing, but also entails having a positive regard or a non-fleeting concern for the other person; implying activism. "This sad person is like me when I'm sad. Good people shouldn't be sad. This is unfair ): I WANT TO HELP!"

But I still don't entirely see what you're getting at. Are you arguing that a person with ASPD is more likely to follow a moral code because they lack the ability to empathize?

Not only is that beside the point of anything previously argued, but it is also completely absurd. Sociopaths are extremely unlikely to follow any moral code. Their behavior is based on the extreme opposite; completely selfish, ultimate pragmatism. They display a complete lack in consistency of behavior.

I take your point about moral codes producing guilt. They often do: they don't work. But the ASPD thing? No...

Delphinus
01-08-2011, 08:12 AM
"Is it desirable or even necessary for a moral agent to be a sociopath?"

>> Neither. It's possible but neither of those things are good.
>> Also a sociopath would never accept the basic value judgments that provide the foundation.
>> A sociopath would never accept "There are times in which I must put the needs of others before my own, even at the risk of grievous bodily harm and/or death."

Which leads me onto the next point: if both empathy and lack of empathy are undesirable qualities in a moral agent, is following a moral code logically possible?

>> The moral agent should act out of empathy guided by his reason.

I don't think so. Empathy is illogical and about as trustworthy in moral decisions as the will to power or the sex drive.
All of which, you'll note, a philosophy has been based on.
Every field of modern ethics has been based on one or more of man's basic instincts. And every last one has been found inadequate.
Maybe the random factor is humanity and the problem is man.
Humans cannot be satisfied and therefore there will never be a final ethics.
There will never be an end to scientific research, either.
The conclusion seems to be that - unless humanity itself is altered - there will never be any ultimate theory of ethics.
But if humanity is altered to remove the will to power, empathy, sex drive, et cetera, will it be a successful species any more? Much of humans' survival relies on those basic instincts to motivate more sophisticated activity.
If all of those instincts were removed, I imagine people would probably commit mass suicide.
I think the very reason man is successful is because he is flawed. Man is nothing more than an animal, ultimately. All animals have the will to power. All animals have the sex drive. Most animals don't have empathy - as we think of it - but herd and pack animals show caring instincts for others.

Non-indented sections are me, indented sections are Kodos. It's been trimmed to the key points and sections in-between, regarding literature and philosophy the ideas have been drawn from, have been removed.

Regarding the definition of empathy, I think empathy is an animal instinct that leads one to care for those in the 'tribe', not some sort of sophisticated form of moral awareness. That means we're probably working from different dictionaries: you think empathy is based on logic, I think it's based on instinct. From wikipedia:


Empathy is the capacity to share the sadness or happiness of another sentient being through consciousness rather than physically.

To empathize is to respond to another's perceived emotional state by experiencing feelings of a similar sort. Sympathy not only includes empathizing, but also entails having a positive regard or a non-fleeting concern for the other person.
I don't think it's me who has the definitions of those two words jumbled up. Incidentally one of my favourite songs is Sympathy For The Devil.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-08-2011, 03:04 PM
*reads thread* *ignores Sawyer saying enough of this rape thing*


If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.

(lay hold on her, and lie with her = to lay her down, and have sex with her)

Where in their is the word Rape? It says nothing of consent or the lack their of.

Kodos
01-08-2011, 05:06 PM
Context. Read the preceding verses. It's detailing rape scenarios and proscribing punishments.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-08-2011, 09:13 PM
No... They're about Chastity. (Unless I'm mis-reading it, but consdering it says the "Laws Concerning Chastity" in regards to Verses 13-30, and 1-12 seem to be about farming, I don't think I am.)

jaidurn
01-08-2011, 09:24 PM
No... They're about Chastity. (Unless I'm mis-reading it, but consdering it says the "Laws Concerning Chastity" in regards to Verses 13-30, and 1-12 seem to be about farming, I don't think I am.)

misreading*

What version of the bible are you guys discussing?

Kodos
01-08-2011, 09:35 PM
I'm using the one on the SAB. King James Version.

zizi
01-08-2011, 09:44 PM
They're in regards to chastity as concerned with rape; once a man had 'humbled' a woman (that is, make her lose all her value by taking away the only thing about her that is important; her virginity) part of his punishment is to marry her.

Also, how the hell does "lay hold on her, and lie with her" not sound like rape to you? To 'lay hold on her' means 'to use force'.

Also, fun fact, if the 'damsel' in question refuses to marry her attacker then she's to be stoned to death.

Also, as a person who has worked with rape & sexual assult victims in the UK: Yes the conviction rate for rape is reprehensibly, repulsivly low. However, this is to do with institutionalised sexism, victim blaming, rape apologism, a massive confusion as to what, exactly constitutes consent, the huge stigma surrounding rape and sexual assult and other things, as opposed to the bible's 'lol a woman's rape is worth this much money and the shame of being wedded to the victim'.
The bible's suggested punishment for rape is laughable compared to the suggested punishments doled out for various other crimes. (Including, as noted above, the very victim refusing to marry her rapist). The bible stance on rape is very clear: you are not being punished for rapeing the woman, you are being punished for stealing from her father.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-08-2011, 09:51 PM
Jai: I'm using some King James version.


Also, how the hell does "lay hold on her, and lie with her" not sound like rape to you? To 'lay hold on her' means 'to use force'.

To lay hold on mean to lie down. I see no implications of force in the definition I'm using (http://onlinedictionary.datasegment.com/word/to+lay+hold+on).


Also, fun fact, if the 'damsel' in question refuses to marry her attacker then she's to be stoned to death.

Dont see that in my version.


The bible stance on rape is very clear: you are not being punished for rapeing the woman, you are being punished for stealing from her father.

While that may be true, it isn't inherent to the Bible. It's the times. Im pretty positve if I asked a Pastor today what he OR she thought the appropiate punishment for rape should be, it wouldn't be the one in the Bible.

Kodos
01-08-2011, 10:10 PM
The fact that women were almost universally considered property at the time does not mean the Bible is exempt from responsibility. The Bible is a collection of vile stories written by primitive savages that is used to guide the lives of billions of human beings. There's a big difference in importance between what the Bible says and what some random fuckwit did in Ye Olde Tymes. And you're right. But the point is that it shows the Bible is either not the word of God or that God believes rape is not that big of a deal.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-08-2011, 10:56 PM
No, but it isn't something it started. It didn't create the evil, it just went with it. And at that time, it wasn't an evil thing. Society, and the standards it hold people to change. And as you say, it was written buy people, who we would now consider less then intelligent in regard to most aspects. They were clearly just making up stories, and as you have agreed with, people today clearly don't take everything in the Bible seriously/for granted, so why does it matter exactly?

Kodos
01-08-2011, 11:10 PM
Because there are people who take everything the Bible says seriously. Furthermore because there are over one billion people on this planet who call themselves Christian. They must acknowledge this book is not divinely inspired at all and instead the work of truly evil men or accept even passages as repugnant as that one. You can't have it both ways.

zizi
01-08-2011, 11:11 PM
Dude are you stupid?

To cause to lie down. The problematic words here are 'to cause'. That implies force; it does not imply consent. Also, quit cutting the phrase in half. The phrase is "lay hold on her, and lie with her". That means; "To cause to lie down, to have sex with her". This means rape.

Hey, fuck it, I'm not going to argue with you, I am going to tell you by taking the origional words of the bible and translating them.

Taphas - (The hebrew word that is translated in the King James as "lay hold on")

1) to catch, handle, lay hold, take hold of, seize, wield
a) (Qal)
1) to lay hold of, seize, arrest, catch
2) to grasp (in order to) wield, wield, use skilfully
b) (Niphal) to be seized, be arrested, be caught, be taken, captured
c) (Piel) to catch, grasp (with the hands)

Here are the meanings listed by the Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon. When coupled with-

shakab - (the hebrew that is translated to 'lie with'
1) to lie down

a) (Qal)
1) to lie, lie down, lie on
2) to lodge
3) to lie (of sexual relations)
4) to lie down (in death)
5) to rest, relax (fig)
b) (Niphal) to be lain with (sexually)
c) (Pual) to be lain with (sexually)
d) (Hiphil) to make to lie down
e) (Hophal) to be laid

The meaning is very fucking clearly rape. They are talking about 'grasping in order to weild' a woman and having sex with her.

Also, the idea of consent in relation to the Bible is rediculous. The Bible makes it abundently clear that women are not real people.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-08-2011, 11:34 PM
Because there are people who take everything the Bible says seriously. Furthermore because there are over one billion people on this planet who call themselves Christian. They must acknowledge this book is not divinely inspired at all and instead the work of truly evil men or accept even passages as repugnant as that one. You can't have it both ways.
Except the men weren't evil. The Bible was a product of the times. By todays standards they (the writers) may be evil, but I see your point. (And by that logic, it probably would be better to be married to the man (even if it is supposed to be the man's punishment which is ridiculous). You aren't going to get stoned to death (which I still haven't seen that you would be anywhere) and no one back then was going to marry an un-chaste girl, whether it was a product of rape or not. (And at the time, marriage was probably the best thing a woman could get.))


To cause to lie down. The problematic words here are 'to cause'. That implies force; it does not imply consent. Also, quit cutting the phrase in half. The phrase is "lay hold on her, and lie with her". That means; "To cause to lie down, to have sex with her". This means rape.
I was cuttin it in half becuase the "to lie with part" is obvious. The Hewbrew does make it obvious that it is talking about rape though (as opposed to the English translation).

Fenn
01-09-2011, 12:19 PM
Except the men weren't evil. The Bible was a product of the times. By todays standards they (the writers) may be evil, but I see your point.

God is omniscient; his morals don't change over time. It the Bible was inspired by God its morals would have been the exactly correct morals with which all people forever should live their lives. Why would God write a book (or "inspire" others to) that would need a second edition written after years?

It all goes back to the idea that it is absurd for a perfect and divine being to create an imperfect world.

butternut
01-09-2011, 02:34 PM
^^ that is pretty obvious right? Are there really people who believe the Bible word for word? and in "God" as a being? that the world was created by "him" in 6 days?
Well, i think that the people in the ancient books and texts really existed. they may be really awesome people, who actually influenced people to follow the right path, pretty much ruled them, made some 'laws' and a moral code, and were basically philanthropists(i'm talking about waayy back in time). And everything written about them - it's all symbolism and metaphors. As time went by(come to around 15-16th century), people started misunderstanding/were led to misunderstand and thus was born all the hype about God performing miracles and such. Some of the stories may even be lies just to increase "God's" powers. After all, most of the texts, if not all, were written by man himself.

When i say "misunderstand/were led to misunderstand", i mean that : maybe some ruler or organization wanted more power, thus twisting some aspects, attributing more 'powers' to God to scare the common man into submission. If he could not be scared, punish them in the name of "God".

As for other beliefs like Roman or Greek mythologies, before science came into existence, man couldn't explain all the phenomena happening around him. hence he believed that some force, or being was controlling the atmosphere around him and thus were born the "Gods/Goddesses of Sun, Moon, Rain, Fire, Knowledge, etc etc".
Why some people still believe in god even after everything is explained? Simple:Comfort. People take great comfort especially when in some kind of pain or despair that there is somebody up there looking over them.

Well, that's what I think and believe. If anyone wants to refute me, you're welcome.

Kodos
01-09-2011, 07:19 PM
^^ that is pretty obvious right? Are there really people who believe the Bible word for word?[.quote]
Yes. There are a great many people who believe the Bible word for word. Furthermore if the Bible is consistently fails to get simple moral questions like "is rape a big deal?", "is slavery morally acceptable?", and "are women people?" then the Bible is completely worthless as a moral guide in any capacity. There are over 1 billion Christians, nearly as many Muslims, and several million Jews. A vast portion of the Human race claims to derive inspiration and guidance from what may well be the single most horrific thing ever wrought by the Human imagination.

[quote]and in "God" as a being? that the world was created by "him" in 6 days?
Well, i think that the people in the ancient books and texts really existed.
There is very little reason to believe many of these people existed.


they may be really awesome people,
Awesome in the same way as Greek mythology's heros - evil jerks doing badass things.


who actually influenced people to follow the right path,
The right path of owning slaves, treating women as property, murdering those who do not believe in the same invisible sky tyrant as you, and generally causing more misery in history than any other one group, yes.


pretty much ruled them, made some 'laws' and a moral code, and were basically philanthropists(i'm talking about waayy back in time).
See above.


And everything written about them - it's all symbolism and metaphors. As time went by(come to around 15-16th century), people started misunderstanding/were led to misunderstand and thus was born all the hype about God performing miracles and such. Some of the stories may even be lies just to increase "God's" powers. After all, most of the texts, if not all, were written by man himself.
There is no God. All of these stories were written by extremely evil men.


When i say "misunderstand/were led to misunderstand", i mean that : maybe some ruler or organization wanted more power, thus twisting some aspects, attributing more 'powers' to God to scare the common man into submission. If he could not be scared, punish them in the name of "God".
This is part of the reason for religion, yes.


As for other beliefs like Roman or Greek mythologies, before science came into existence, man couldn't explain all the phenomena happening around him. hence he believed that some force, or being was controlling the atmosphere around him and thus were born the "Gods/Goddesses of Sun, Moon, Rain, Fire, Knowledge, etc etc".
Why some people still believe in god even after everything is explained? Simple:Comfort. People take great comfort especially when in some kind of pain or despair that there is somebody up there looking over them.
That's part of why people still believe in religion. Many believe in religion because they are evil and seek to find legitimization for their vile beliefs. The Bible provides this in spades.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-09-2011, 07:57 PM
God is omniscient

Not originally he wasn't. (May have that confused with the following) Hell, in the original, God wasn't suppose to be good. (Read in Philosophy Textbook.) Where do you think the phrase "God fearing" comes from? Hmmm?

Kodos
01-09-2011, 08:19 PM
Christians often equate love with fear. For most of human history it was not - and in many places still is not - considered unusual for a man to be known to beat his wife and yet be believed to love her. Or to beat children. You are dealing with a diseased mindset that believes love and hate and not polar opposites.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-09-2011, 08:40 PM
Fair enough. You cant say all Chrisitians are wife and children beaters though. That's simply not true.

Kodos
01-09-2011, 08:51 PM
I never implied such a thing. I'm simply saying that talking about love and fear in rational terms when dealing with Judeo-Christians is impossible. These people believe an all-loving being created an endless concentration camp wherein horrors worse than any wrought in Auschwitz are perpetrated literally forever.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-09-2011, 09:11 PM
Since when? I think if I ask any Christian I know they'll tell me God isn't responsible for Hitler. (Which means most Christians are hypocrites, but w/e.)

Kodos
01-09-2011, 09:27 PM
God created Hell. Hell is infinitely worse than Auschwitz or any other Nazi death camp. That's my point. Think about that. Infinitely worse. The horrors of the Nazi death camps are literally nothing compared to Hell.

And yet they say that this is the work of a all-loving being, and not the most vile monster the Human imagination has ever produced.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-09-2011, 09:55 PM
In the original text, God was not nice. It was some Pope or something who said he was, and he did so to get more power.

Kodos
01-09-2011, 10:01 PM
The Bible says God is good and loving. Especially in the NT.

butternut
01-10-2011, 04:12 AM
There is very little reason to believe many of these people existed.

Why not?Then how were they written about if they didn't exist? Even if they were the product of human imagination, then the person who imagined him could have followed the moral code and conduct he attributed to the imaginary person right?


Awesome in the same way as Greek mythology's heros - evil jerks doing badass things.

WHy is it so hard for you to believe that nice people existed in the past??


The right path of owning slaves, treating women as property, murdering those who do not believe in the same invisible sky tyrant as you, and generally causing more misery in history than any other one group, yes.

I did mention about evil people twisting the texts and ideas to gain power and control over the masses by doing these. The good things done by the person, the moral life, the leading people over the right path etc etc was done when the person actually existed-long before the tyrants even came into existence to ruin everything.


All of these stories were written by extremely evil men.

I agree. The stories as we read them now were written by evil men.


Many believe in religion because they are evil and seek to find legitimization for their vile beliefs. The Bible provides this in spades.

All the people who believe in religion are NOT evil. Some of them, yeah.Those who force it upon others, and those who use it as a means for their own selfish ends, for example. But not all. Most people believe in it because they derive comfort-or relief from the idea that there is something/somebody more powerful looking over them, looking after them.Kinda how a small child derives comfort from his mother when anything happens.

Kodos
01-10-2011, 04:29 AM
Why not?Then how were they written about if they didn't exist? Even if they were the product of human imagination, then the person who imagined him could have followed the moral code and conduct he attributed to the imaginary person right?
The Hobbit tells the story of Aragorn, King of Men, among others. Is this account in and of itself enough to convince you that such a man existed? Why or why not?


WHy is it so hard for you to believe that nice people existed in the past??
Because I am unaware of any characters in the Bible who could be called nice. I cannot even think of any who are less than evil.


I did mention about evil people twisting the texts and ideas to gain power and control over the masses by doing these. The good things done by the person, the moral life, the leading people over the right path etc etc was done when the person actually existed-long before the tyrants even came into existence to ruin everything.
Why do you believe this? When the only account of a probably fictional character's life says they did something, what makes you think otherwise?


I agree. The stories as we read them now were written by evil men.
The stories as we read them now are more or less the stories as they were written. The changes to the stories have made the horrors within seem less awful, not more awful.


All the people who believe in religion are NOT evil.
If you honestly and sincerely embrace the teachings of Christianity - or any of the Judeo-Christian religions - you are evil. Period. Belief in Hell, if nothing else, is completely incompatible with being a moral person. A belief in the justness of torture is not acceptable for civilized Human beings - a belief in infinite torture is infinitely more unacceptable.


Some of them, yeah.Those who force it upon others, and those who use it as a means for their own selfish ends, for example. But not all. Most people believe in it because they derive comfort-or relief from the idea that there is something/somebody more powerful looking over them, looking after them.Kinda how a small child derives comfort from his mother when anything happens.
Yes. Except if a grown man continues to rely on his mother - or more apt for the analogy, a security blanket from his infancy - for guidance even into his adulthood we consider him to be aberrant and in need of mental help.

butternut
01-10-2011, 08:54 AM
The Hobbit tells the story of Aragorn, King of Men, among others. Is this account in and of itself enough to convince you that such a man existed? Why or why not?

It's different. Aragorn is a fictitious character. But all these stories and texts are written for people to teach them something, to make them follow certain guidelines. Even if the characters in the text don't exist, at least the author must have followed majority of what he's written right?


Because I am unaware of any characters in the Bible who could be called nice. I cannot even think of any who are less than evil.

See below.


Why do you believe this? When the only account of a probably fictional character's life says they did something, what makes you think otherwise?

Because I believe that that is not the only account of that character. History says that lots of texts have been re-written lots of times, and with the many editions that are there, you can't be sure what is true anymore. So if there was something to be written about the character, it must be something remarkable right?


The changes to the stories have made the horrors within seem less awful, not more awful.

We are talking about evil people who made use of those texts to gain control over people. Why would they make things seem easier if they wanted to scare away the people into submission?


If you honestly and sincerely embrace the teachings of Christianity - or any of the Judeo-Christian religions - you are evil. Period. Belief in Hell, if nothing else, is completely incompatible with being a moral person. A belief in the justness of torture is not acceptable for civilized Human beings - a belief in infinite torture is infinitely more unacceptable.

Hell and such sort of stuff was created to scare people. (again, for example:when u tell a child he's gonna get a beating for stealing something) Now we are capable of thinking and being rational. But in those days, the common man had to be led by more intelligent people and told how to lead his life, or else the whole social system would have crumbled. Believing in Hell doesn't mean it actually exists. Besides, now-a-days, it's just an expression for a place or experience that isn't too good.


Yes. Except if a grown man continues to rely on his mother - or more apt for the analogy, a security blanket from his infancy - for guidance even into his adulthood we consider him to be aberrant and in need of mental help.

Dude, you are exaggerating things! He depends on something doesn't imply he turns to that being for every single thing. Haven't you felt lost in life, or full of hopelessness or something similar?Sure friends and family help to cope, but sometimes some people find their strength on their own. For some people who do, they believe they get it from something more powerful(read:God). When people pray(not just Christianity, but all religions) it's similar to meditating. Most places of worship are quite and peaceful if you notice. It just gives hope and strength to continue and renew their efforts.

Regantor
01-10-2011, 10:39 AM
It's different. Aragorn is a fictitious character. But all these stories and texts are written for people to teach them something, to make them follow certain guidelines. Even if the characters in the text don't exist, at least the author must have followed majority of what he's written right? Because I believe that that is not the only account of that character. History says that lots of texts have been re-written lots of times, and with the many editions that are there, you can't be sure what is true anymore. So if there was something to be written about the character, it must be something remarkable right?


Not if he had an agenda. I can't remember the exact name off by heart, but there was a middle eastern king who told a suspiciously similar story to the bible before it was even writen... Oh, except he was most of the main characters.

It's much easier to rule people who you've brainwashed into being passive, after all. This is the biggest reason why I find religion dangerous personally; What kind of a society do you live in if you are only not raping and pilaging because a book told you not to?...


We are talking about evil people who made use of those texts to gain control over people. Why would they make things seem easier if they wanted to scare away the people into submission?

It's not "easier". Kodos is just saying that they tried to make the "good guys" more appealing to modern sensibilities. I.e; The fact that Jesus pretty much takes on the ethnicity of whatever country the church is in.


Hell and such sort of stuff was created to scare people. (again, for example:when u tell a child he's gonna get a beating for stealing something) Now we are capable of thinking and being rational. But in those days, the common man had to be led by more intelligent people and told how to lead his life, or else the whole social system would have crumbled. Believing in Hell doesn't mean it actually exists. Besides, now-a-days, it's just an expression for a place or experience that isn't too good.
Dude, you are exaggerating things! He depends on something doesn't imply he turns to that being for every single thing. Haven't you felt lost in life, or full of hopelessness or something similar?Sure friends and family help to cope, but sometimes some people find their strength on their own. For some people who do, they believe they get it from something more powerful(read:God). When people pray(not just Christianity, but all religions) it's similar to meditating. Most places of worship are quite and peaceful if you notice. It just gives hope and strength to continue and renew their efforts.

Stuck these two qoutes togeather for a reason; Are you trying to say that people believe in god because they want to be scared? Wasn't that the entire point of turning to him in the first place?... Also, just because places of worship aren't bloodbaths doesn't make them peaceful. Any location that makes a distinction between "them" and "us" is just belitting and dehumanizing other people for no good reason.

Think about all the millions of lives that we could either send to heaven with religion, or feed and bring back to health with science. It shouldn't take a genius to figure out which one is more moral to spend money on.

butternut
01-10-2011, 12:30 PM
Not if he had an agenda. I can't remember the exact name off by heart, but there was a middle eastern king who told a suspiciously similar story to the bible before it was even writen... Oh, except he was most of the main characters.

Yeah. Honestly even I felt it was a weak argument.


What kind of a society do you live in if you are only not raping and pilaging because a book told you not to?

That is based on today's standards. But if you look overall, the common man of then had to have somebody controlling him.Man's mind was weak. It is more developed today, and will be even more developed after, say, another 500 years. The book is just a record of all the rules and guidelines.


Are you trying to say that people believe in god because they want to be scared?

Huh?No I'm not. How did you come to that conclusion? Didn't get you.


Any location that makes a distinction between "them" and "us" is just belitting and dehumanizing other people for no good reason.

Could you be more clear? I didn't get you - when u say "them" and "us", who are they?

Regantor
01-10-2011, 02:32 PM
That is based on today's standards. But if you look overall, the common man of then had to have somebody controlling him.Man's mind was weak. It is more developed today, and will be even more developed after, say, another 500 years. The book is just a record of all the rules and guidelines.

lol, I'm English. 500 years ago our monarchy were the people doing the raping and pilaging, and they were supposed to be appointed by god too! But that's a really specific example, so yeah, I don't expect you to answer that. I'm just saying that the people in charge are very, very rarely the smartest or most noble.


Huh?No I'm not. How did you come to that conclusion? Didn't get you.

I know you wern't intentionally, but what I was trying to point out was the fact that you're saying people feel a need to be judged at times. While this is true, telling them that they might go to a boiling torture room for all eternity isn't exactly that combforting is it? Even if it's only supposed to be a story, hell is an integral part of the whole deal; Because otherwise Jesus didn't supposedly die for much.


Could you be more clear? I didn't get you - when u say "them" and "us", who are they?

Christians and non-christians in this case. Telling people to pity non-believers, -even if that entails saving them-, implies that they are somehow foolish and unable to save themselves. Even in the best case senario, it gives justification for people to stand on street corners telling me I'm going to hell if I don't do what they say.

Now, I'm not saying that a great deal of christians would ever think of doing this, not by a long shot. It's just pretty hipocritical considering their own teachings, and a pretty clear example of power abuse, too. Could you imagine if they let people yell anti-smoking adverts at you like that?...

Kodos
01-10-2011, 03:01 PM
It's different. Aragorn is a fictitious character.
And so are most of the Biblical "heroes".


But all these stories and texts are written for people to teach them something, to make them follow certain guidelines. Even if the characters in the text don't exist, at least the author must have followed majority of what he's written right?
I write about a giant rape dragon, among other things. I've never raped anyone. I've never even sexually harassed people. It's entirely possible to write about things you neither like nor do.


Because I believe that that is not the only account of that character. History says that lots of texts have been re-written lots of times, and with the many editions that are there, you can't be sure what is true anymore. So if there was something to be written about the character, it must be something remarkable right?
If the only sources of information about the life of a supposed individual are a book which is blatantly inconsistent with itself and reality and clearly draws inspiration from the myths and tropes common at the time, and another series of books written later that are similar but different in generally minor ways, there is still no reason to assume any of them are true.


We are talking about evil people who made use of those texts to gain control over people. Why would they make things seem easier if they wanted to scare away the people into submission?
Because historically that is what they have done. The Church no longer openly declares that women are property or gays ought to be killed. Do you think the Church today has any less of a desire to rule over men?


Hell and such sort of stuff was created to scare people. (again, for example:when u tell a child he's gonna get a beating for stealing something) Now we are capable of thinking and being rational. But in those days, the common man had to be led by more intelligent people and told how to lead his life, or else the whole social system would have crumbled.
Sheep are stupid and must be driven. Goats are intelligent and need to be led. Humans are like the latter. Societies can, have, and do function without having the belief that there is a cosmic concentration camp waiting for you because you decided to masturbate.


Believing in Hell doesn't mean it actually exists.
Yes. But it does mean that you believe such a thing can be deserved and is good, hence you are evil.


Besides, now-a-days, it's just an expression for a place or experience that isn't too good.
Not really. Christianity makes no sense without Hell. Jesus Christ is a savior. A savior is one who saves. To be saved is to be saved from some thing or things. If there is no Hell then what, exactly, is Jesus saving us from?


Dude, you are exaggerating things! He depends on something doesn't imply he turns to that being for every single thing. Haven't you felt lost in life, or full of hopelessness or something similar?Sure friends and family help to cope, but sometimes some people find their strength on their own. For some people who do, they believe they get it from something more powerful(read:God). When people pray(not just Christianity, but all religions) it's similar to meditating. Most places of worship are quite and peaceful if you notice. It just gives hope and strength to continue and renew their efforts.
I've been sad and depressed many times, sure. Once or twice almost suicidally so. And then I realise that I live in a wonderful world full of amazing things both natural and man-made. That the universe is vast and wonderful and I happen to be a tiny aggregate of matter that, by pure chance, is able to perceive this and be awed by it. That I have formed meaningful bonds with other people who I love and who love me. That however awful the world is today it is still better than it was 500, or even 50, years ago.
I don't believe in God. I believe in people; in their kindness and their compassion, their strengths and their drive. I believe in science; in the belief that man can conquer the world through reason and that we need not shiver alone in the cold cursing the dark. I believe in technology, in the promise of a better future for myself and those who will follow it offers us all and the lessons of responsibility it forces on us. I believe in laughter. I believe in lots of things.
The world is a vast and wonderful place and there is never any reason or need to turn to fantasy for comfort.


Not if he had an agenda. I can't remember the exact name off by heart, but there was a middle eastern king who told a suspiciously similar story to the bible before it was even writen... Oh, except he was most of the main characters.
Gilgamesh? Although to be fair, lots of people did that story above. But I think you're thinking of Gilgamesh? I'm pretty sure he was a semi-historical king. And while he wasn't an actual character in the story, Augustus Caeser did more or less the same thing with the Aeneid (which, unlike the Bible, is actually good reading. I reccomend it. I have the David West translation and it's boss).

Fenn
01-10-2011, 08:21 PM
Are you claiming, Kodos, that there is not a single sentence in the Bible that, taken out of context, is good? A truly evil book would spawn only true evil. Yet how many religious orders have charity organizations? How can goodness be inspired, even if through incorrect or ignorant translation, by a book meant only for evil.

Why would the writers, completely evil beings, include lines such as "love your neighbor as yourself" or "thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife?" if they were only trying to spawn evil?


The world is a vast and wonderful place and there is never any reason or need to turn to fantasy for comfort.

Although it shouldn't be a necesity, fantasy/fictional works can be a healthy, temporary escape for people, and sometimes fiction can help us look at the real world in a different light. I understand your point though; people shouldn't depend on it.

Kodos
01-10-2011, 08:31 PM
Are you claiming, Kodos, that there is not a single sentence in the Bible that, taken out of context, is good?
I'm claiming that the Bible is overwhelmingly evil, contains enormously more evil passages than good passages, and that as such it is not and should never be seen as a valid guidebook on moral behavior. Furthermore the few good passages in the Bible contain instructions that can and have been deduced by members of other faiths, or no faiths. There is no need for the Bible.


A truly evil book would spawn only true evil.
No. Truly evil people can and have spawned good, and truly evil books can and have spawned good.


Yet how many religious orders have charity organizations?
Considering how many religious organizations exist, the money the make, and how little of that money goes towards actually helping people in need rather than simply indoctrinating them? Very few. And there are secular charities as well.


How can goodness be inspired, even if through incorrect or ignorant translation, by a book meant only for evil.
Hitler had some good ideas to. You are making an ad hominem argument of sorts.


Why would the writers, completely evil beings, include lines such as "love your neighbor as yourself" or "thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife?" if they were only trying to spawn evil?
Well even an evil person would desire to protect their property. "Do not covet your neighbors wife/goods" is something anyone who owns property would probably encourage. And it's easy to say things like "love your neighbor as yourself" while including instructions for stoning people to death.

Delphinus
01-11-2011, 05:27 AM
Why would the writers, completely evil beings, include lines such as "love your neighbor as yourself" or "thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife?" if they were only trying to spawn evil?
"Love thy neighbour as thyself" is patently impossible. "Love thy neighbour" is acceptable as a guideline for living in any organised society, but as thyself? That means you'd be willing to drag a complete stranger across a desert for two days with a broken leg just on the basis of your survival instinct in a (futile) attempt to reach water and civilisation. Not gonna happen.
"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife" is also bullshit. Jealousy is a natural part of being human, and here the Bible is attempting to make its readers deny their own jealousy or even hate themselves for feeling jealous. Psychology tells (and shows) us some of the consequences of repressing desires in that way. This commandment is a clear gateway to mental illness.

butternut
01-11-2011, 07:44 AM
I write about a giant rape dragon, among other things. I've never raped anyone. I've never even sexually harassed people. It's entirely possible to write about things you neither like nor do.

I get your point.


If the only sources of information about the life of a supposed individual are a book which is blatantly inconsistent with itself and reality and clearly draws inspiration from the myths and tropes common at the time, and another series of books written later that are similar but different in generally minor ways, there is still no reason to assume any of them are true.

Yeah, there's no reason to assume that any of them are true, but there's no reason to assume they haven't existed either. I guess I'm being optimistic in saying that. Just my opinion.


The world is a vast and wonderful place and there is never any reason or need to turn to fantasy for comfort.

I agree with Fenn. It is okay to turn to fantasy or fiction for comfort, but not okay to completely depend on it.Else it is a gateway to a mental illness.

And I wanted to clear one thing : Are you saying any God is evil, or are you against only the God mentioned in the Bible?

This is totally unrelated to the discussion right now, but God comes across as a self-centered attention seeker. Especially Psalm 14 makes him seem like a loser : just because nobody is following him, or looking to him, everyone is evil. Isn't God supposed to be a good being?Full of positivity, loving and caring, and stuff like that?

P.S. This is getting interesting.I'm going to start reading the Bible properly.

Blue_Dragon
01-11-2011, 10:28 AM
I'm just sitting back reading a lot of this stuff. But the only suggestion I do have for Saphira is to use the New International version, not King James. At least the New International was written and translated by modern scholars, and not by people who were beholden to a king who claimed to be directly appointed by God (which, to my understanding, is how things used to work. The first version of the King James, after all, was commissioned by Henry the VIII.) That's all I'm saying. It would be more accurate in its translation, I think, than the King James.

butternut
01-11-2011, 11:31 AM
Thank you, Blue Dragon. But I'll look into the King James' Version too. At least, it'd give an insight as to how it was then and stuff. you know, the psychology of those people, their ideas and views.

Fenn
01-11-2011, 04:58 PM
Fine, the Bible is evil and unneccesary. I guess I'm just having trouble accepting that Christianity is this "spawn of the devil" because I live around tons of "devout" Catholics. They care about others, despise corruption in the Church, tolerate and accept other religions, and work directly with the poor often. They have their flaws, like any human, and they do perform illogical acts like pray and attend Mass every week. But I can't detect an ounce of evil intentions in any of them.

I also don't think you would consider them real Christians. The way you have defined the word, as believing in and adhering fully and willingly to Church doctrine and leadership, would narrow down the number of true Christians incredibly. There's a difference between what people say they believe and what they truly believe.

Sawyer
01-11-2011, 05:37 PM
Here's a topic. We are claiming that organised religion is basically evil. Would people have preferred a world in which the church, or religion in general, never came about? Or do we accept that they are a number of benefits to organised religion?

Regantor
01-11-2011, 06:47 PM
Here's a topic. We are claiming that organised religion is basically evil. Would people have preferred a world in which the church, or religion in general, never came about? Or do we accept that they are a number of benefits to organised religion?

I think this is being a bit too specific personaly. Early forms of goverment and even science were based off of religion, simply because that's all we knew about at the time. Modern chemisty grew out of alchemy for instance, and you could say medicine out of shamanism, even... In that respect I don't think religion is evil at all; Just primitive.

Kodos
01-11-2011, 07:10 PM
Religion, organized or otherwise, has no place in the modern world today. The fact that most organized religious groups are massive forces of evil that harm thousands, if not millions, of people just go to further show this fact. Religion is the security blanket of mankind. It had a place and a role to fill when we were in our racial infancy but now that we are adults it is harmful to our mental health to cling to it still.

Fenn
01-13-2011, 09:04 AM
I tried to reply but an error occured. I'll re-write it later

Hamdrank
01-14-2011, 09:18 PM
Kodos I do not see how a person whom is consider a God or God can be evil. Instilling morals into people that cause an overal general of good cannot mean the creator is evil. Yes he may not respond to you but he may respond to some, he works in the mist it's unseeing to the natrual eye. Also about the hiearchy of who made whom and if God was created by another can be proven. Their always has to be an end and a person on the top, with your theory that he's evil he might like it up there. I don't see how you think God can be evil or non-existant living your whole life to see nothing but black as a purpose seems rather stupid.

Fenn
01-14-2011, 10:25 PM
Kodos I do not see how a person whom is consider a God or God can be evil. Instilling morals into people that cause an overal general of good cannot mean the creator is evil. Yes he may not respond to you but he may respond to some, he works in the mist it's unseeing to the natrual eye. Also about the hiearchy of who made whom and if God was created by another can be proven. Their always has to be an end and a person on the top, with your theory that he's evil he might like it up there. I don't see how you think God can be evil or non-existant living your whole life to see nothing but black as a purpose seems rather stupid.

Read the last 8 pages over again (at least Kodos' posts). He answered most of your arguments already.

Hamdrank
01-15-2011, 08:27 AM
Read the last 8 pages over again (at least Kodos' posts). He answered most of your arguments already. Can I get a direct response from him instead? Read only the first page. His view and your view may be different.

Kodos
01-15-2011, 09:04 AM
Kodos I do not see how a person whom is consider a God or God can be evil.
Suppose I am standing on a street corner, waiting for the light change so I can cross safely. Suppose I notice a small child wandering past me and into oncoming traffic. I can easily reach out and stop the child, and if I do not do so I know - for the sake of argument - with absolute certainty she will be struck by a car and killed. I can save her life at no cost to myself, but I choose not to. Would you call me anything less than evil? God is omnipotent and omniscient and ergo everything in the universe that happens happens only with his direct and implicit approval. God had the means and the knowledge to stop the holocaust, and yet he chose not to. When someone has the means and knowledge to prevent something from happening and yet it happens, the only logical conclusion that can be drawn is that the person in question desired that thing to happen.

Furthermore, God specifically endorses sexism, slavery, homophobia, racism, and more. I struggle to think of an evil action which is not condoned somewhere within the pages of the Bible.


Instilling morals into people that cause an overal general of good cannot mean the creator is evil.
What morals has God instilled? The only reason the Church no longer burns witches is because liberals have dragged them kicking and screaming out of that phase. When people talk about religion as a force of good in the world they are talking about extreme minorities of religious practitioners. By and large religious groups have always held true to the ancient, evil, dogmas and resisted every change.


Yes he may not respond to you but he may respond to some, he works in the mist it's unseeing to the natrual eye.
This is a logical fallacy known as an appeal to ignorance. Don't do this.


Also about the hiearchy of who made whom and if God was created by another can be proven.
See above.


Their always has to be an end and a person on the top, with your theory that he's evil he might like it up there.
I can't even parse this. And if you are saying there always has to be a hierarchy, that's bullshit. This may come as a shock to you, but people are capable of having egalitarian relationships.


I don't see how you think God can be evil or non-existant living your whole life to see nothing but black as a purpose seems rather stupid.
Where did I ever say that there is no purpose or meaning to anything? Please do not make things up.

Also if a man's wife dies his life may lose meaning and he may despair. Does this mean that his wife must not be dead? Even if your silly argument was true, it still would not mean God exists. Maybe the world's just a miserable, awful, place. Just because something being true would have very unpleasant implications does not mean it is not true. I'd bring up the fact that death is terrifying and unpleasant but still very real as an example of this, but clearly you are a theist and thus you don't even believe in death, so I'm afraid I can't think of a good analogy beyond the dead wife one, trite as it is.

And please read the OP. A lot of your 'arguments' are addressed in it.

butternut
01-15-2011, 09:07 AM
Can I get a direct response from him instead? Read only the first page. His view and your view may be different.

If you've read the first page, one of the rules was clearly read at least last 3 pages before posting something. The reason for this is to prevent recurring arguments and repeating posts. This discussion has been happening for days now. The reason Fenn replied that for you was because he has been following the discussion throughout and thinks the answers are there. You could have at least done the courtesy of actually checking..

Hamdrank
01-15-2011, 10:18 AM
Looks like things dealing with enigmas you completely dismissed Kodos, isn't that why people have faith in the first place?

Kodos
01-15-2011, 11:08 AM
What are you trying to say? There is no enigma, first of all, and second of all faith is just a polite way of saying "insane unjustifiable beliefs."

There is no fundamental difference between a belief in God, a belief in Sagan's dragon, and the belief of a schizophrenic man that he is Napoleon. And see the OP. If you can argue something from faith, then I can dismiss it the same. You get what you put in. If you are going to make an argument without evidence to back it up, I will dismiss it with the same amount of evidence.

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:44 PM
Why can't I post here?

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:45 PM
I'll gonna make this real quick 'cause I'm rushed for time. I'll move on from the "is there a God?" debate for a moment and try to state what I think I've been trying to say.

Okay. You have seen the ultimate evil that religion can cause. You've listed examples too. But to say that the good results of religion is an extreme minority is, in my limited experience, an incorrect observation. Almost all the Christians I know participate in food drives, or they meet with the elderly in nursing homes, or they traveled to help in Haiti; I could go on and on. I know these actions happened, because I have heard them speak, seen photos of the work they did--it wasn't some big plot to steal money or enslave others. Do some of them believe in hell? Yes, but they don't realize the impoications of this like you have explained; they simply see it as a form of justice, the idea of "good triumphs over evil." They pray, sure--how does that hurt anyone? Essentially, none of them harbor evil, even if the religion and organization they claim to follow does. In fact, many of them detest the actions of the Church. You can label them true Christians or false Christians, but in the end they believe wholeheartedly in love over hate.

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:46 PM
I'll gonna make this real quick 'cause I'm rushed for time. I'll move on from the "is there a God?" debate for a moment and try to state what I think I've been trying to say.

Okay. You have seen the ultimate evil that religion can cause. You've listed examples too. But to say that the good results of religion is an extreme minority is, in my limited experience, an incorrect observation. Almost all the Christians I know participate in food drives, or they meet with the elderly in nursing homes, or they traveled to help in Haiti; I could go on and on. I know these actions happened, because I have heard them speak, seen photos of the work they did--it wasn't some big plot to steal money or enslave others. Do some of them believe in hell? Yes, but they don't realize the impoications of this like you have explained; they simply see it as a form of justice, the idea of "good triumphs over evil." They pray, sure--how does that hurt anyone? Essentially, none of them harbor evil, even if the religion and organization they claim to follow does. In fact, many of them detest the actions of the Church. You can label them true Christians or false Christians, but in the end they believe wholeheartedly in love over hate.

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:46 PM
I have more but it's glitching.

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:47 PM
multipost

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:48 PM
multipost

Fenn
01-16-2011, 10:48 PM
I'll gonna make this real quick 'cause I'm rushed for time. I'll move on from the "is there a God?" debate for a moment and try to state what I think I've been trying to say.

Okay. You have seen the ultimate evil that religion can cause. You've listed examples too. But to say that the good results of religion is an extreme minority is, in my limited experience, an incorrect observation. Almost all the Christians I know participate in food drives, or they meet with the elderly in nursing homes, or they traveled to help in Haiti; I could go on and on. I know these actions happened, because I have heard them speak, seen photos of the work they did--it wasn't some big plot to steal money or enslave others. Do some of them believe in hell? Yes, but they don't realize the impoications of this like you have explained; they simply see it as a form of justice, the idea of "good triumphs over evil." They pray, sure--how does that hurt anyone? Essentially, none of them harbor evil, even if the religion and organization they claim to follow does. In fact, many of them detest the actions of the Church. You can label them true Christians or false Christians, but in the end they believe wholeheartedly in love over hate.

Art does not deal with the what and why, but with values and worth. (this paragraph was longer but won't post).

However, religion is filled with powerful symbols. Whether Christianity or other religions stole ideas such as charity and forgiveness from secular sources doesn't matter; it has shown how powerfully it can move people. And whether it's right or not, human emotions can sway human actions. That is why God still exists for me. He exists today for millions as a symbol of peace, hope and love, whether the original evil creators intended such or not. Let me put it this way: God is not the source of charity and kindness; from kindness and charity, God is manifested as a symbol and idea.

An art form expresses ideas and emotions that are either impossible or incredibly complicated to express in scientific terms. This is where God belongs.

Kodos
01-16-2011, 11:11 PM
I'll gonna make this real quick 'cause I'm rushed for time. I'll move on from the "is there a God?" debate for a moment and try to state what I think I've been trying to say.

Okay. You have seen the ultimate evil that religion can cause. You've listed examples too. But to say that the good results of religion is an extreme minority is, in my limited experience, an incorrect observation. Almost all the Christians I know participate in food drives, or they meet with the elderly in nursing homes,
You can do both of these things without being a Christian. Countless people and groups have realized these are good things without resulting to Judeo-Christianity or religion at all. Good people will do good things, bad people will do bad things, but few things can make good people do bad things as often as religion.


or they traveled to help in Haiti;
Yes. Like vultures. They come in, help, and then convert people.


I could go on and on. I know these actions happened, because I have heard them speak, seen photos of the work they did--it wasn't some big plot to steal money or enslave others. Do some of them believe in hell? Yes, but they don't realize the impoications of this like you have explained; they simply see it as a form of justice, the idea of "good triumphs over evil."
Ignorance is no excuse. Wishing torture upon people, including heroic people, is evil whether or not you stop to think about it. You are still filth.


They pray, sure--how does that hurt anyone?
It hurts the individual. It gives them false hope, inspires laziness, and makes them believe that it is okay to harbor illogical beliefs.

Two hands working can accomplish more than a billion hands clasped in prayer.


Essentially, none of them harbor evil, even if the religion and organization they claim to follow does.
Guilt by association is not always fallacious. When confronted with an evil organization we have a moral obligation to oppose, not to aid, it. These people are people who are still okay with the idea of Hell, with the idea of women being inferior to men (implicit in only allowing male priests) and more. Do any of these people you speak so highly of speak out against the increasing Christianization of America? Do they proudly proclaim that their religion is but one way a person can be good and that there are Muslims, Buddhists, Jews, and atheists who are no less moral than they? Somehow I have a feeling they don't.


In fact, many of them detest the actions of the Church.
And yet they associate with it.
"I really wish my fellow Nazis would stop killing Jews, but these skull helmets are just too cool to make me quit!"


You can label them true Christians or false Christians, but in the end they believe wholeheartedly in love over hate.
Yes. They believe in love over hate so much that they believe eternal torture is justified. No one who believes in love can believe in torture and/or eternal punishment. They believe in both.

And, again, all these good actions you describe are not dependent on being a Christian. So even if you argued there was a causal relation between their being Christian and their doing these good deeds, the fact still remains that there are other belief systems that don't have negative side effects and a long history of atrocities that can engender the same behavior.

butternut
01-17-2011, 02:48 AM
i am confused. in your OP, you mentioned God, you mentioned Religion, but in the discussion, you keep going against Christianity and the Bible. What do you think is evil? the idea of people believing God exists in general, or just the Bible and people who claim to follow it?

Kodos
01-17-2011, 09:31 PM
Both. The latter is certainly more harmful than the former, though.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-17-2011, 09:40 PM
Evil Kodos, or stupid? (Or both?)

Fenn
01-17-2011, 10:01 PM
Read my second post first. Once again the post system keeps saying "an error occured while processing this directive." I had to cut out one part of my response.


Yes. They believe in love over hate so much that they believe eternal torture is justified. No one who believes in love can believe in torture and/or eternal punishment. They believe in both.

And, again, all these good actions you describe are not dependent on being a Christian. So even if you argued there was a causal relation between their being Christian and their doing these good deeds, the fact still remains that there are other belief systems that don't have negative side effects and a long history of atrocities that can engender the same behavior.

I need to apologize because I still have failed to get my point across. I am not saying religion is needed. But it HAS power, and not just for evil. And the aspects of religion that try to answer the what, how, and why must be discarded. People must stop looking to religion as a concrete or a reality

What I am suggesting, as an alternative to blowing religion off the face of the planet, is to radically transform it, and redefine it, to the point where it only barely can be called religion, but where the good that does exist there can finally appear. I propose making religion a form of art, rather than a science. A window through which we view the world, not the shape of the world itself.

Have you ever been touched by a work of art, or a piece of music? Has the work ever moved you to take an action, or to reflect on something, or to change your mentality? Now, before you took that action or changed that perspective, did you use your rational mind to decide whether or not that idea was actually a good one? I'm sure you did.

This should be the new role religion plays. Like a painting or song, people's emotions are pulled by religion (please note that I am using religion in the most general sense, not just Catholicism). Yet, unlike art forms, people mistake religion for the actual truth, rather than a dramatization or perspective on it. Religion in theform I am perscribing will not be based on rituals or beliefs, but emotions. You know how sometimes you think you feel "spirits" or other entities, even though you know that they logically cannot exist? Instead of forcing down those emotions, I think we should let our imaginations take us where we desire, so long as we realize that it is just that; our imagination. So when I walk down the street, and I feel the "presence of God," I will allow my emotional self that privelege, but I will not walk out into traffic because I believe the hand of God will save me.

Am I making sense or still just rambling on like a fool?

Fenn
01-17-2011, 10:02 PM
You can do both of these things without being a Christian. Countless people and groups have realized these are good things without resulting to Judeo-Christianity or religion at all. Good people will do good things, bad people will do bad things, but few things can make good people do bad things as often as religion.

I wasn't trying to say that religion is required for such things, but that it has the power to inspire or promote these actions. Unfortunately, it can also induce very evil things.


Ignorance is no excuse. Wishing torture upon people, including heroic people, is evil whether or not you stop to think about it. You are still filth.

You can wish torture upon someone without having any religious affiliation. Belief in hell (or anything) is not the same as belief in the value of it. I believe the Holocaust happened, but I don't believe in the cause of purpose of the Holocaust. Of the Catholics I know, I would say most of them would prefer a world where everyone went to heaven. Also, some individual Christians do not accept the Church definition of hell and rather define it as enternal separation from God, which is ultimately the choice of that person through free will. (We are moving back to the free will debate, but let's steer clear of it until we have come to some sort of end on the current issue)


It hurts the individual. It gives them false hope, inspires laziness, and makes them believe that it is okay to harbor illogical beliefs.

Two hands working can accomplish more than a billion hands clasped in prayer.

I believe someone stated here or elsewhere that prayer can be a form of meditation. And note the main point I am trying to make; religion should not a replacement for rationality and logic, but a view/perspective of it. I'll explain that later in the post. For example, perhaps someone finds meditation easier by constructing a "being" to dialogue with, kind of like a journal or diary.


Guilt by association is not always fallacious. When confronted with an evil organization we have a moral obligation to oppose, not to aid, it. These people are people who are still okay with the idea of Hell, with the idea of women being inferior to men (implicit in only allowing male priests) and more. Do any of these people you speak so highly of speak out against the increasing Christianization of America? Do they proudly proclaim that their religion is but one way a person can be good and that there are Muslims, Buddhists, Jews, and atheists who are no less moral than they? Somehow I have a feeling they don't.

Sort of and yes, in that order. I hear more talk of purifying the Church of its corrupt ways and returning to roots. They certainly aren't against evangelization. They want to fix the Church, although I will admit they do not take many steps themselves. Second, one of these people, a theology teacher in a Catholic school, was discussing whether non-Christians could be good. He explained that if someone is doing good, even if it is not in God's name, it is still good. Many of them promote tolerance and acceptance of other religions and of atheists. They believe religion should be a choice.


And yet they associate with it.
"I really wish my fellow Nazis would stop killing Jews, but these skull helmets are just too cool to make me quit!"

It's more like "I really wish my fellow Christians would stop forcing their religion on others and harming them, but we still share some common beliefs, and I won't let them hijack my religion!" Religious organizations are not the only ones who suffer from unruly members. If you judge a group by its worst members, no one will be clean. It is the unfavorable ratio of good to bad groups, which you have pointed out, that I find is hurting religion.

Kodos
01-17-2011, 10:40 PM
Evil Kodos, or stupid? (Or both?)
The adherents are at the least stupid, and the people who push it on them are evil. But there is a sort of low-level evil in willful ignorance.


I need to apologize because I still have failed to get my point across. I am not saying religion is needed. But it HAS power, and not just for evil.
The same can be said of National Socialism as an ideology. Would you argue for the widespread adoption of Nazi ideology?


And the aspects of religion that try to answer the what, how, and why must be discarded. People must stop looking to religion as a concrete or a reality
The very thinking process behind religion is dangerous and harmful.


What I am suggesting, as an alternative to blowing religion off the face of the planet, is to radically transform it, and redefine it, to the point where it only barely can be called religion, but where the good that does exist there can finally appear. I propose making religion a form of art, rather than a science. A window through which we view the world, not the shape of the world itself.
See above. And we have that already. It's called philosophy.


Have you ever been touched by a work of art, or a piece of music?
Quite often. Except art does not include an entire epistemology with it. Religion does. Art does not include as a vital tenant the idea that some things are immune to logical criticism. Art requires skill and hard work, as well - on both ends. If you do not invest yourself emotionally in a piece of artwork and maintain an open mind, it cannot have an emotioanl effect on you.


Has the work ever moved you to take an action, or to reflect on something, or to change your mentality? Now, before you took that action or changed that perspective, did you use your rational mind to decide whether or not that idea was actually a good one? I'm sure you did.
No. That's not how sane people respond to art. Art can provoke an emotional response in us, sure, but the sane person always checks their emotions with logic. After reading books critical of America I did not immediately act on my emotional response and go out and kill politicans. I checked my anger with logic.


This should be the new role religion plays. Like a painting or song, people's emotions are pulled by religion (please note that I am using religion in the most general sense, not just Catholicism). Yet, unlike art forms, people mistake religion for the actual truth, rather than a dramatization or perspective on it. Religion in theform I am perscribing will not be based on rituals or beliefs, but emotions. You know how sometimes you think you feel "spirits" or other entities, even though you know that they logically cannot exist? Instead of forcing down those emotions, I think we should let our imaginations take us where we desire, so long as we realize that it is just that; our imagination. So when I walk down the street, and I feel the "presence of God," I will allow my emotional self that privelege, but I will not walk out into traffic because I believe the hand of God will save me.
Religion as art would be approached as literature.

The Bible is an atrociously bad piece of literature and if it can provoke an emotional response in you - independent of religion - than you really need to read more books. The Bible has practically no artistic value.



I wasn't trying to say that religion is required for such things, but that it has the power to inspire or promote these actions. Unfortunately, it can also induce very evil things.
Exactly. And you cannot divorce the evil things from religion. They are innate to it. That is why Religion is worthless as a tool to induce good. There are secular philosophies which are not only more likely to consistently inspire and guide good behavior, but which also have the benefit of not only lacking thousands of years of horror as their history, but also having most, if not all, of those evil actions as being expressly forbidden by the framework.



You can wish torture upon someone without having any religious affiliation. Belief in hell (or anything) is not the same as belief in the value of it.
If you believe in God as the Western world understands him and you believe in Hell then you believe in Hell as a good thing. If God is all good and sends people to Hell than the only logical conclusion that can be reached is that Hell is good and acceptable.


I believe the Holocaust happened, but I don't believe in the cause of purpose of the Holocaust.
See above. Your belief in the reality of the Holocaust does not include a premise that Hitler was the ultimate source and font of morality as well as omnipotent and omniscient.


Of the Catholics I know, I would say most of them would prefer a world where everyone went to heaven.
Except the fact is they still believe an all-good, all-knowing, and all-powerful God sends people to Hell. Ergo they believe Hell is good.


Also, some individual Christians do not accept the Church definition of hell and rather define it as enternal separation from God, which is ultimately the choice of that person through free will. (We are moving back to the free will debate, but let's steer clear of it until we have come to some sort of end on the current issue)
Except the fact is that it's still an eternal punishment that God allows to happen when he could easily prevent it. As long as God is omnipotent and omniscient you are confronted with the undeniable fact that anything that happens anywhere, at any time, is happening with his direct approval. Period. Humans are finite beings. There is no mathematical process by which infinity can be derived from finite numbers. So even if a human being sinned every second of his life, somehow, and even if sins had a gestalt or exponentially increasing value, there is still literally no way by which a human being could be justly said to deserve an eternal punishment, no matter how minor or severe. The ONLY alternative is to say that a single sin has infinite value in terms of punishment, but if that is the case then every single human being deserves infinite punishment.



I believe someone stated here or elsewhere that prayer can be a form of meditation.
There is a huge difference between meditation and asking an invisible fairy for favors and honestly believing they will happen.


And note the main point I am trying to make; religion should not a replacement for rationality and logic, but a view/perspective of it. I'll explain that later in the post. For example, perhaps someone finds meditation easier by constructing a "being" to dialogue with, kind of like a journal or diary.
See above. There is a huge different between having an internal "dialogue" and having a conversation with an imaginary friend. The latter is something only madmen and theists do.



Sort of and yes, in that order. I hear more talk of purifying the Church of its corrupt ways and returning to roots. They certainly aren't against evangelization. They want to fix the Church, although I will admit they do not take many steps themselves. Second, one of these people, a theology teacher in a Catholic school, was discussing whether non-Christians could be good. He explained that if someone is doing good, even if it is not in God's name, it is still good. Many of them promote tolerance and acceptance of other religions and of atheists. They believe religion should be a choice.
A choice where failure to choose correctly results in being sent to uber-auschwitz for all time.



It's more like "I really wish my fellow Christians would stop forcing their religion on others and harming them, but we still share some common beliefs, and I won't let them hijack my religion!" Religious organizations are not the only ones who suffer from unruly members. If you judge a group by its worst members, no one will be clean.
Yes. However there is a big different between judging a group by its worst members and judging a group on the doctrines it teaches and the behaviors such doctrines encourage and promote. Christians who are truly good people are not behaving in manners according to what their groups actually teach, most of the time. Jesus Christ said that not a single word of the Old Testament was invalid. Any Christian who is friends with a gay man they know has had sex with another man is not being a good Christian. The Old Testament is clear that such people are to be killed.


It is the unfavorable ratio of good to bad groups, which you have pointed out, that I find is hurting religion.
See above. It's like holding up the example of a Nazi who lived a good life as a defense of the ideology. He is the one who is aberrant for his group, not the mainstream.

violin
01-17-2011, 11:48 PM
Exactly. And you cannot divorce the evil things from religion. They are innate to it. That is why Religion is worthless as a tool to induce good.

I don't agree.

A quote from wikipedia:

The Bulgarian Orthodox Church founded in 870 AD is the independent national church of Bulgaria like the other national branches of Eastern Orthodoxy and is considered an inseparable element of Bulgarian national consciousness. The church has been abolished twice during the periods of Byzantine (10181185) and Ottoman (13961878) domination but was revived every time as a symbol of Bulgarian statehood...
So it it served as an unifying symbol and preserved the nation during two hard periods. How is that evil?

ClockHand
01-17-2011, 11:54 PM
It can be evil. You are just saying that work to unify a nation but you are taking away the fact that they teach evil things.

Kodos
01-18-2011, 12:21 AM
I don't agree.

A quote from wikipedia:

So it it served as an unifying symbol and preserved the nation during two hard periods. How is that evil?
First of all there are plenty of things that can serve as unifying symbols and provide a sense of national identity that are not churches. Just because something is a sufficient cause does not mean it is a necessary cause.

Also nationalism is in and of itself evil. The sooner the human race does away with nation-states the better. We are all humans and this silly idea that we should base our entire lives around arbitrary geographic tribes is stupid. Also asteroids, super volcanoes, global warming, and other natural disasters do not care about silly things like nationality. The human race will unite and survive or remain split up into silly imaginary tribes and fall. There is no alternative.

violin
01-18-2011, 01:13 AM
First of all there are plenty of things that can serve as unifying symbols and provide a sense of national identity that are not churches. Just because something is a sufficient cause does not mean it is a necessary cause.
Doesn't make my statement wrong. The church was used as a tool for a good cause. And you're still wrong - it can be used for good.


Also nationalism is in and of itself evil. The sooner the human race does away with nation-states the better. We are all humans and this silly idea that we should base our entire lives around arbitrary geographic tribes is stupid. Also asteroids, super volcanoes, global warming, and other natural disasters do not care about silly things like nationality. The human race will unite and survive or remain split up into silly imaginary tribes and fall. There is no alternative.

Good point but I prefer the motto of EU: In varietate concordia (United in devirsity). We should not try to change others - we should accept them.

Yes nationalism could be bad - in most cases. It is normal when someone tries to change you or force you to accept something - you try to fight back somehow. Isn't that right? You show it yourself in this thread - refuse to accept any other comment except your owns. It is easy to oppose anything that is said. I can do it too. But probably will stop because this can continue forever.

ClockHand, How do they teach evil? Have you ever been to an ortodox church? Who are "they"? When you go to the church there is noone there. If there is a preast he just reads a 5 min pray from a book. He doesn't give any speach or tries to teach people anything. I go there 2-3 times a year because it's calm, quite and I have sometime to think. Plus I like the icons of the saints - they give me somekind of confidence. It helps me when I'm depressed. There are no missionaries going around to promote the religion. How is that evil? Looks fine with me.

Kodos
01-18-2011, 01:21 AM
Doesn't make my statement wrong. The church was used as a tool for a good cause. And you're still wrong - it can be used for good.
And? Again, I never said that religion could not be used as a force for good. Read my arguments. And if helping provide a sense of national identity is the best thing a group that promotes and causes massive misery can do well then congratulations, you just redeemed the nazis.



Good point but I prefer the motto of EU: In varietate concordia (United in devirsity). We should not try to change others - we should accept them.
There is a massive difference between differences of opinion and belief and things like national identity. When someone tells you they are a Utilitarian, or a Christian, or a Marxist they are (assuming they are correctly using the terms) telling you something about their beliefs and thus, in some way or another, telling you something about who they are as people. When someone tells you they are an American, or a Bulgarian, or a Finn, or a German they are telling you either their genetic ancestry or what arbitrary plot of land they happened to be born in.

One is a real difference the other is one that is entirely made up.


Yes nationalism could be bad - in most cases. It is normal when someone tries to change you or force you to accept something - you try to fight back somehow. Isn't that right?
No, it is not always right to stand up for your beliefs. If someone is wrong they should change. Period.


You show it yourself in this thread - refuse to accept any other comment except your owns. It is easy to oppose anything that is said. I can do it too. But probably will stop because this can continue forever.
I refuse to accept the beliefs of others put forth in this thread because they are all demonstrably wrong and very poorly argued. There is a massive difference between stubbornly ignoring other opinions and rejecting opinions after carefully examining them.

The odds are overwhelmingly likely that I have examined my opponent's opinions in far more depth and with far more care than the people espousing them ever have.

violin
01-18-2011, 02:00 AM
...a group that promotes and causes massive misery can do...
Have you ever been to a Ordotox Church? Based on what you make that statement? Do you think the same for Buddhism?


There is a massive difference between differences of opinion and belief and things like national identity. When someone tells you they are a Utilitarian, or a Christian, or a Marxist they are (assuming they are correctly using the terms) telling you something about their beliefs and thus, in some way or another, telling you something about who they are as people. When someone tells you they are an American, or a Bulgarian, or a Finn, or a German they are telling you either their genetic ancestry or what arbitrary plot of land they happened to be born in.

I'm confused here. How would you identify your self?



No, it is not always right to stand up for your beliefs. If someone is wrong they should change. Period.
This is wrong! Germans tried to to that in WW2. And I was not talking about beliefs. I was talking about your culture. And who is the one to say what is right ot wrong?


I refuse to accept the beliefs of others put forth in this thread because they are all demonstrably wrong and very poorly argued. There is a massive difference between stubbornly ignoring other opinions and rejecting opinions after carefully examining them.
I don't want to change your beliefs.


The odds are overwhelmingly likely that I have examined my opponent's opinions in far more depth and with far more care than the people espousing them ever have.
I guess you are right here.

Kodos
01-18-2011, 02:47 AM
Have you ever been to a Ordotox Church? Based on what you make that statement? Do you think the same for Buddhism?
Yes, the Orthodox Church. They are no less evil than the Roman Catholic Church. Here's an account on the murder of Hypatia, a scholar and teacher at the Library of Alexandria, by Coptic Christians: "One day in March AD 415, during the season of Lent, her chariot was waylaid on her route home by a Christian mob, possibly Nitrian monks led by a man identified only as Peter, who is thought to be Peter the Reader. The Christian monks stripped her naked and dragged her through the streets to the newly Christianised Caesareum church, where she was brutally killed. Some reports suggest she was flayed with ostraca (pot shards) and set ablaze while still alive, though other accounts suggest those actions happened after her death."


I'm confused here. How would you identify your self?
I try and stay away from labels. Atheist, in terms of religion, and in terms of nationality I don't identify with any nation-state. I think the entire idea is horrible, and I hate America, my country of citizenship, more than any other nation on Earth with the possible exception of Israel.


This is wrong! Germans tried to to that in WW2.
Germans did not try and convince people with erroneous beliefs to change via reasoned debate. They brutally slaughtered one group of mistaken people (among other groups) for not believing in the same mistakes they believed in. It's not a case of the right correcting the wrong, it's a case of one group of wrong people murdering another group of wrong people.


And I was not talking about beliefs. I was talking about your culture.
What do you think a culture is if not shared beliefs and values? This does not even make sense.


And who is the one to say what is right ot wrong?
Reality? There is such a thing as facts, you know. Some people are right, some people are wrong. All beliefs are not equal.


I don't want to change your beliefs.
If this was true you would not voice your differing beliefs.

violin
01-18-2011, 08:53 AM
Good morning,

Bad things happens no matter if you believe in something or not... I'm sorry but I'll stop my dispute here. Dont' accept it as victory or something, I still think what you say is wrong in general. Don't want to prove or disprove it...

Offtopic: Nice avatar ;)

Bacon_Barbarian
01-18-2011, 09:11 AM
The adherents are at the least stupid, and the people who push it on them are evil. But there is a sort of low-level evil in willful ignorance.

Mmmmm. I wonder how much of it is willful. I mean, if you grow up with something, it's sort of instilled in you. Not that you can't change, but... IDK. For example, my Dad's side of the family was raised Catholic because his parents were migrants from Italy. Now my Dad is no longer Catholic, but his sibling are (and while I would never try to redeem the Catholic Church as a whole,) I wouldn't say that their is something wrong with his siblings beliefs.

Sawyer
01-18-2011, 11:52 AM
My main problem with militant atheism is that I just don't see the world being any better off if everyone became atheists over night. So why bother?

Bacon_Barbarian
01-18-2011, 12:20 PM
When did Kodos ever say anything about being militant?

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-18-2011, 12:27 PM
Why bother what? Why bother not believing in false promises from religions? Do you really need someone to answer that question?

Sawyer
01-18-2011, 01:31 PM
When did Kodos ever say anything about being militant?

Militant atheism is a term used, not to describe literal militancy, but aggressive atheist argument and.or misotheism. It was coined by Dawkins, or somebody like that.


Why bother what? Why bother not believing in false promises from religions? Do you really need someone to answer that question?

No. I was referring to absolutist, aggressive atheism, not atheism in general. It's one thing to disbelieve something, it's another to claim that in the modern world, religion is useless and evil without regard to practical connotations - which I find that Dawkinites & other heavy duty atheists always fail to address. They attack from a theoretical/philosophical perspective; which is made double annoying by the so-called "scientific coating" - dressing ethical arguments up as science and logic.

This is fine when arguing the non-existence of God; the scientific method has many times disproved the classical notion of conventional deities. However, it's not OK to mix science and logic with ethics. Science is not ethics. Not to say that one is "more important" than the other; but when argued in tandem, by atheists: obvious problems arise.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-18-2011, 01:58 PM
Militant atheism is a term used, not to describe literal militancy, but aggressive atheist argument and.or misotheism. It was coined by Dawkins, or somebody like that
Oh. I see.



However, it's not OK to mix science and logic with ethics. Science is not ethics.

1): Why not?
2): Duh

Delphinus
01-18-2011, 02:35 PM
However, it's not OK to mix science and logic with ethics.

Rubbish. All ethics are based off logical extrapolation from a series of principles. For example, if your principle is: "Give what you would like to receive." or The Golden Rule, then a logical train of thought re. ethics would be:
"FFFF I WANT TO KILL THIS MAN"
"Would I like to be killed by someone I had angered? (Would this follow the Golden Rule?)"
"No it doesn't. In accordance with the fact that I believe the Golden Rule is the best system of ethics, I won't kill this person."

And if your principle is 'make people happy' then modern psychology can help discover what makes people happy, and modern science can observe that there is no objective good or evil - 'good' and 'evil' cannot be detected with any equipment. Those are both ethical questions ("What makes people happy?" and "Are good and evil real?") being solved through the application of science.

In short, you're talking shit.

Sawyer
01-18-2011, 02:48 PM
1) You would not use ethics as a starting point to prove or disprove any physical phenomena. The ethical nature of any given interaction does not effect its logical existence. But that isn't the point I'm making. I'm saying that it is common for the militant atheist to use logic to disprove God, and then blur the whole thing by presenting their own set of equally arbitrary moral beliefs. Moral beliefs that are almost universally parallel to the modern theist's. Sure Christianity has a bad history, and is "evil" from a theoretical standpoint; but saying that Christians are universally evil, misogynistic, whatever, barbarians is clearly untrue.

Bottom line is that there is a certain level of irony when self-professed "rationalists" start straying into ethics to dismiss religion.

2) How rude.


Rubbish. All ethics are based off logical extrapolation from a series of principles.

Oh lawd...
When did I say otherwise?
Ethical boundaries are not fixed. THEY ARE SUBJECTIVE. The right ethical action in one time and place, is the wrong ethical action in another time and place. Ethics are not based on universal truths, they are based on changing social stimuli. This is what I am saying. I am not saying and have never said that ethics are not based on a correct logical sequence. Only that this sequence changes; and therefore, it's answer changes.

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-18-2011, 03:06 PM
Who says that all Christians are universally evil? You're trying to refue an argument that no one is making. No one uses morals to try to disprove God, you have this ass-about-face. In just about every religious debate ever, at some point in the proceedings, this argument will occur:

Religious person: 'God/Allah/Yahwah etc, is the giver of all morals and ethics. Where would we get our morals and ethics if what you, atheist, say is correct?'

Atheist: 'Humanism. But furthermore, all Judeo-Christian text advocate some or all of the following: Child murder, slavery, homophobia etc'

And the argument takes off from there. No one has said Christians are all evil, but when they start to say that what they believe in is universially good and all-loving, it is the duty of anyone to point out that that is bullshit in its highest order.

Sawyer
01-18-2011, 03:52 PM
Who says that all Christians are universally evil? You're trying to refute an argument that no one is making.

It has been both explicitly said and implied in this thread that Christians are evil; multiple times. And I'm not even trying to refute that claim. Not really. It doesn't really need refuting.


No one uses morals to try to disprove God, you have this ass-about-face.

If you read my post properly you would see that I explicitly say what I am, and am not arguing. Funnily enough, you've paraphrased something I said myself (see bold) which suggests you aren't reading my posts properly. I make it fairly clear (now in italics) that I am not talking about proving or disproving God with ethics.


You would not use ethics as a starting point to prove or disprove any physical phenomena. The ethical nature of any given interaction does not effect its logical existence. But that isn't the point I'm making. I'm saying that it is common for the militant atheist to use logic to disprove God, and then blur the whole thing by presenting their own set of equally arbitrary moral beliefs.


In just about every religious debate ever, at some point in the proceedings, this argument will occur:

Religious person: 'God/Allah/Yahwah etc, is the giver of all morals and ethics. Where would we get our morals and ethics if what you, atheist, say is correct?'

Atheist: 'Humanism. But furthermore, all Judeo-Christian text advocate some or all of the following: Child murder, slavery, homophobia etc'

And the argument takes off from there. No one has said Christians are all evil, but when they start to say that what they believe in is universally good and all-loving, it is the duty of anyone to point out that that is bullshit in its highest order.

I don't think any Theist in this thread has made that argument, but yes. Again though, you misinterpret what I said.

EDIT: Bold and italics don't appear in quotes? But yeah, read me quoting myself. :]

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-18-2011, 04:12 PM
Yes, I am reading your posts.Ofcourse, I'm sivving through all the drival and trying to fish a bit of sense out of them. So lets review:

- You aren't trying to say that militant atheists are trying to disprove God with ethics. I'm glad, cause that would be a retarded statement.
- You then say: I'm saying that it is common for the militant atheist to use logic to disprove God, and then blur the whole thing by presenting their own set of equally arbitrary moral beliefs.

Huh? Any danger of an example here? And you're right that morals are subjective, so when has any 'militant atheist presented their own set of equally arbitrary moral beliefs'?

Now you're probably gonna say I haven't understood your post, which wouldn't be surprising because you haven't really said anything.

Sorry mate, I don't mean to be rude, but vague arguments have always annoyed me.

Fenn
01-18-2011, 04:32 PM
Sorry to interrupt you guys, you can continue, but I'm replying to Kodos.

So lets say we do eliminate religion from the world, since it's useless anyway. Now, if these billions of evil Christians were irrational enough to believe in religion, I feel like they're still going to be irrational enough to adopt other stupid and dangerous philosophies. Although truly evil people must take some blame for swaying others to evil, they only ever succeed when people blindly follow them.

For clarity's sake, I'm going to directly state my argument: the blame for the evil of religions, much like the evil of governments or businesses, lies more with the individuals and the portion of the general populace who blindly and/or illogically believes what they proclaim, than the instituion itself.

Also...


Except the fact is that it's still an eternal punishment that God allows to happen when he could easily prevent it. As long as God is omnipotent and omniscient you are confronted with the undeniable fact that anything that happens anywhere, at any time, is happening with his direct approval

I said this twice already in different words! It all leads back to: why would a perfect being create an imperfect world?

Sawyer
01-18-2011, 05:00 PM
Huh? Any danger of an example here? And you're right that morals are subjective, so when has any 'militant atheist presented their own set of equally arbitrary moral beliefs'?

I didn't think an example was justified. Just look at almost any page in this thread. It's hard to draw any proper examples of arguments because everything is so fragmented; part of the reason why everyone's misunderstanding each other. But here, going back one a couple pages:


The adherents are at the least stupid, and the people who push it on them are evil. But there is a sort of low-level evil in willful ignorance.

Not the best example, but Cleveland's almost on and time is short. Here is an example of Kodos placing forward a moral/ethical belief that willful ignorance is a low-level evil. Let me make this clear. I am not necessarily disagreeing with this statement, but it is an example of one subjective belief being used as a form of attack on a Christian argument: that God exists.

I've made two real points. Let me put them across clearly:


I argue that the world would not be a better place if everyone woke up tomorrow as an atheist.
I argue that questions of morality, ethics, good or evil, and right and wrong, are not relevant to the existence or non-existence of a god or gods.



Sorry mate, I don't mean to be rude, but vague arguments have always annoyed me.

...but I'm a gurl. :(

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-18-2011, 05:49 PM
1.I argue that the world would not be a better place if everyone woke up tomorrow as an atheist

Why not?

2.I argue that questions of morality, ethics, good or evil, and right and wrong, are not relevant to the existence or non-existence of a god or gods.

I dont think anyone would disagree with that. The reason morals are bought into these arguments is that, according to the religious, morals and ethics are a product of their religion, which said atheist will quickly point out is bullshit. Nothing to do with weather said being actually exists, just that if said being did exist, the morals and ethics they preach would be fucked.

...but I'm a gurl.

Where I come from, calling a girl 'mate' is perfectly acceptable ;)

Bacon_Barbarian
01-18-2011, 09:55 PM
2) How rude.

I mean no one ever said Sicence was Ethics. You didn't. Kodos didn't. It's rather obvious. Kodos' arguments are usually rooted in Science. ... He uses Ethics to point out hypocrisies in the Bible, not to argue God's lack of existence.

Yara
01-20-2011, 02:32 PM
I mean no one ever said Sicence was Ethics. You didn't. Kodos didn't. It's rather obvious. Kodos' arguments are usually rooted in Science. ... He uses Ethics to point out hypocrisies in the Bible, not to argue God's lack of existence.
I thought he's atheist. Sorry for being out of topic =$
*goes out*

Bacon_Barbarian
01-20-2011, 03:28 PM
I thought he's atheist. Sorry for being out of topic =$
*goes out*

He IS an atheist. He just wasn't using Ethos in his argument that God doesn't exist. He did use Ethos when arguing about why people shouldn't BE Christian.

Yara
01-20-2011, 04:48 PM
He IS an atheist. He just wasn't using Ethos in his argument that God doesn't exist. He did use Ethos when arguing about why people shouldn't BE Christian.

Ah.. I see. Thanks for the clarification, Bacon ^_^

Bacon_Barbarian
01-20-2011, 04:56 PM
Well, that may not be right, but that's how I understood it anyway.

Fenn
01-21-2011, 10:02 AM
He IS an atheist. He just wasn't using Ethos in his argument that God doesn't exist. He did use Ethos when arguing about why people shouldn't BE Christian.

That sounds about right. Since I was trying to argue that its okay to be Christian, and he pointed out the ethical dangers posed by Christians on the world.

Of course now he decides to make me wait days hanging over my keyboard in suspense...no rush, but I'm dying for answers. Anyone else can feel free to reply to my post too, y'know.

Kodos
01-21-2011, 12:43 PM
Sorry. Been a bit busy and tired the last few days. Haven't had the time to give this thread the attention it deserves.

Sorry to interrupt you guys, you can continue, but I'm replying to Kodos.

So lets say we do eliminate religion from the world, since it's useless anyway. Now, if these billions of evil Christians were irrational enough to believe in religion, I feel like they're still going to be irrational enough to adopt other stupid and dangerous philosophies.
Probably. But now they are forced to adopt philosophies that force them to use logic and argumentation to justify their beliefs. There is now a common ground between the evil and the good and the possibility for swaying them. A man who believes that it is okay to murder because of logical reasons is a man who can be reasoned with. A man who believes that it is okay to murder because a magical sky tyrant said so in a book written thousands of years ago that he knows is true by faith is impossible to be reasoned with.
Once faith is eliminated progress becomes possible.


Although truly evil people must take some blame for swaying others to evil, they only ever succeed when people blindly follow them.

For clarity's sake, I'm going to directly state my argument: the blame for the evil of religions, much like the evil of governments or businesses, lies more with the individuals and the portion of the general populace who blindly and/or illogically believes what they proclaim, than the instituion itself.
The fallacy here is that you assume organizations exist. They do not. An organization is simply an aggregate of individuals. "The Catholic Church" does not really exist. It is just a word we use to describe a large grouping of people behaving in a certain way. Groups are nothing more than collections of individuals. The Catholic Church is evil because the individuals making it up are evil (through either action or inaction). Groups may be prescriptive in that peer pressure or coercion causes members to behave in a certain way, but ultimately they are descriptive.


I said this twice already in different words! It all leads back to: why would a perfect being create an imperfect world?
Well the problem there is that it depends how you define perfect. If you include morally perfect then, yeah, it's a logical impossibility. If you don't include that, though, it's easy - he's a dick. Ever play the Sims, or even Sim City? Something tells me that if you did that you, at least once, decided to be a jerk to your virtual minions. Same thing. If an omnipotent and omniscient being exists the only logical conclusion that can be drawn about him/her/it is that he/she/it is the most evil being to ever exist, by definition, since literally every single bad thing that has ever happened or will ever happen is its fault.

Fenn
01-21-2011, 08:57 PM
Sorry. Been a bit busy and tired the last few days. Haven't had the time to give this thread the attention it deserves.

That's exactly what I figured and why I said no rush. It's not like you haven't contributed already.


Probably. But now they are forced to adopt philosophies that force them to use logic and argumentation to justify their beliefs. There is now a common ground between the evil and the good and the possibility for swaying them. A man who believes that it is okay to murder because of logical reasons is a man who can be reasoned with. A man who believes that it is okay to murder because a magical sky tyrant said so in a book written thousands of years ago that he knows is true by faith is impossible to be reasoned with.
Once faith is eliminated progress becomes possible.

Well that's kind of what I meant. If they believed in religion then they believe in faith. And faith is not limited to mystical beings but also superstitions and just about anything else. You can have faith in a person, for example, even though they give a logical person no reason to believe or trust them in whatever it is you believe they will do/think/say. And if someone believes in faith they obviously do not confine themselves by logic thus trying to logically convince them that faith is illogical is thus illogical.

That last sentence is quite humorous.


The fallacy here is that you assume organizations exist. They do not. An organization is simply an aggregate of individuals. "The Catholic Church" does not really exist. It is just a word we use to describe a large grouping of people behaving in a certain way. Groups are nothing more than collections of individuals. The Catholic Church is evil because the individuals making it up are evil (through either action or inaction). Groups may be prescriptive in that peer pressure or coercion causes members to behave in a certain way, but ultimately they are descriptive.

Wouldn't the organization also be made up of the works and or ideas which those individuals adhere to? Also, I was implying that the leaders of the organization were separate from the general following, which they are in a way. The leader(s) choose to follow the system of beliefs and values of their own accord, while the general following listens to those leaders and invests an amount of trust in them.


Well the problem there is that it depends how you define perfect. If you include morally perfect then, yeah, it's a logical impossibility. If you don't include that, though, it's easy - he's a dick. Ever play the Sims, or even Sim City? Something tells me that if you did that you, at least once, decided to be a jerk to your virtual minions. Same thing. If an omnipotent and omniscient being exists the only logical conclusion that can be drawn about him/her/it is that he/she/it is the most evil being to ever exist, by definition, since literally every single bad thing that has ever happened or will ever happen is its fault.

So is literally every single good thing though.


Anyway, what does applying labels such as "evil" do anyway, even in a philosophical debate? Unless we agree on a definition of evil from the start, this idea is subjective.

If someone lives a life of "evil," enjoys it, and dies before justice is served, who has the right to suggest that person was in the wrong? What possible logic could be applied to that person during their life to convince them to change their ways?

Kodos
01-21-2011, 11:01 PM
That's exactly what I figured and why I said no rush. It's not like you haven't contributed already.

Well that's kind of what I meant. If they believed in religion then they believe in faith. And faith is not limited to mystical beings but also superstitions and just about anything else.
Once you remove religion superstition becomes much harder to justify. The goal is to create a culture of logic. A culture where people understand that they are responsible for their actions and beliefs and that if they wish to sway others to their beliefs that they must argue them well, rather than appealing to imaginary threats and "because!"


You can have faith in a person, for example, even though they give a logical person no reason to believe or trust them in whatever it is you believe they will do/think/say.
Nonsense. People's faith in people is rooted in logic. If your best friend asked you to borrow 50 dollars and you had it to spare, you'd probably give it to him. If a random stranger asked you for 50 bucks you'd probably not do the same. Even if you didn't expect it back you might still do it for the logical reason of "I desire to see my friend happy. Giving my friend money will make him happy. I can afford to give him money. I should give him the money."

There's still a logical process going on.


And if someone believes in faith they obviously do not confine themselves by logic thus trying to logically convince them that faith is illogical is thus illogical.
Except they do believe in logic. They just try and have it both ways. When someone says they don't believe in logic the simple counter is (besides the fact that logic is how our brains work) to point out that they do not stand in front of moving cars.


Wouldn't the organization also be made up of the works and or ideas which those individuals adhere to?[/quotes]
Ideas exist only in the hearts and minds of men. And works are verbs, not nouns. They are things that happen when people act on their ideas. Ultimately you get back to the fact that a group is just an aggregate of people and has no life or existence beyond its parts.

[quote]Also, I was implying that the leaders of the organization were separate from the general following, which they are in a way.
Except these are organizations you can willingly join or leave and which are based around a shared ideology. If you are a willing member of an ideological organization you are - by the simple act of being a member - implicitly saying that you approve of it. When we are confronted with evil we have the moral obligation to resist it or, at the very least, not to help it. By joining an evil organization you show your support and also more likely than not aid it in some way. So while the beliefs and orders may come down from 'on high' your continued acceptance of these orders is tantamount to saying that were you in command you would do similar or the same.


The leader(s) choose to follow the system of beliefs and values of their own accord, while the general following listens to those leaders and invests an amount of trust in them.
See above.


Anyway, what does applying labels such as "evil" do anyway, even in a philosophical debate? Unless we agree on a definition of evil from the start, this idea is subjective.
If we accept that there exists evil - however you define it - and that God is omnipotent and omniscient, then the only logical conclusion is that God is evil. Period. There can be no alternative. No matter how you define evil the fact comes down to the fact that God is able and aware of it and yet does nothing to stop it.


If someone lives a life of "evil," enjoys it, and dies before justice is served, who has the right to suggest that person was in the wrong? What possible logic could be applied to that person during their life to convince them to change their ways?
Nothing. Morality all ultimately boils down in a way to might makes right. But the fact remains that systems of morality like the one I have espoused are the sort that allow for most people to live extremely happy and rewarding lives without much hassle. Additionally there are logical reasons to behave.

DemonKaiser93
01-22-2011, 05:34 PM
Well, I'm an acnostic, so I don't believe in "god" for one of the most simple reasons, "why would I believe in something without proof"
and even that why does "god" have to be a being?, I mean , could have been a event ,like , "if god created everything the he may as well be the big bang" I mean without proof theres nothing...

DemonKaiser93
01-22-2011, 05:40 PM
Well there's no god so there's no evil we are not diferent from animals , whe have instincs ,the only one that says he is evil is the society, the system, babylon, the same man-made society that corrupts everything and everyone, making sure theres something wrong with you and then the stupid people turn to the religion because with the bullshit they sell they thing that it will save you, In this world theres no good or bad people, theres just stupid people and thouse who know how to control the stupid masses

Hayashida
01-22-2011, 06:01 PM
Please don't double post.

Kodos
01-22-2011, 09:49 PM
Well, I'm an acnostic, so I don't believe in "god" for one of the most simple reasons, "why would I believe in something without proof"
and even that why does "god" have to be a being?, I mean , could have been a event ,like , "if god created everything the he may as well be the big bang" I mean without proof theres nothing...
Agnostic. And that makes you an atheist.


Well there's no god so there's no evil
The existence or non-existence of God has literally zero impact on the existence or non-existence of morals. This is basic ethics and can be derived from relatively simple logical deduction. I demonstrated this earlier in the thread.


we are not diferent from animals
No. We very clearly are different from other animals. This difference is most likely one of degree of qualities and not of kind of qualities, but the fact remains that we are very clearly different from other animals.


, whe have instincs ,
We have instincts, but we also have the (sadly often ignored) ability to suppress them. Also please type better.


the only one that says he is evil is the society, the system, babylon, the same man-made society that corrupts everything and everyone,
Society does not exist. Did you ignore what I said about groups? To say society, not man, is evil is a literal contradiction. Society is nothing but a collection of humans. Also to say that something corrupts something is to implicitly acknowledge that evil exists. You are stating that there is some ideal state for a man to exist in (good) and that society is taking him away from it (evil).


making sure theres something wrong with you and then the stupid people turn to the religion because with the bullshit they sell they thing that it will save you,
No, there are a lot of things wrong with people. Society creates illusory problems, but the reasons most people turn to religion are not based on society. Society cannot cause you to develop a brain tumor.


In this world theres no good or bad people,
I disagree and judging by your inconsistent argument, so do you.


theres just stupid people and thouse who know how to control the stupid masses
See above. By your language it is very clear you consider stupidity to be an unacceptable choice - ergo you consider it evil.

DemonKaiser93
01-23-2011, 02:07 AM
mmmm no I don't consider it unacceptable, and the only thing that differs us from animals is consciousness...

also, theres no such thing as atheism, the proper word is agnostic...

Kodos
01-23-2011, 02:21 AM
Well, I'm an acnostic, so I don't believe in "god" for one of the most simple reasons, "why would I believe in something without proof"
and even that why does "god" have to be a being?, I mean , could have been a event ,like , "if god created everything the he may as well be the big bang" I mean without proof theres nothing...


Well there's no god so there's no evil we are not diferent from animals , whe have instincs ,the only one that says he is evil is the society, the system, babylon, the same man-made society that corrupts everything and everyone, making sure theres something wrong with you and then the stupid people turn to the religion because with the bullshit they sell they thing that it will save you, In this world theres no good or bad people, theres just stupid people and thouse who know how to control the stupid masses


mmmm no I don't consider it unacceptable, and the only thing that differs us from animals is consciousness...
Animals have consciousness. What humans have that (most) other animals seem to not have is sapience. And whatever the word you use, the point is that if you can't see how a human differs from other animals you are retarded. The difference is most likely one of quality and not of kind, but the difference is still there. The difference between a human brain, a dog brain, and a computer ultimately is one of quality and not kind and yet no one would say these three things are identical. Differences of quality are still differences.


also, theres no such thing as atheism, the proper word is agnostic...
This sentence is so stupid that I don't even know where to begin. You're going to have to elaborate on that.

Fenn
01-23-2011, 11:22 AM
Once you remove religion superstition becomes much harder to justify. The goal is to create a culture of logic. A culture where people understand that they are responsible for their actions and beliefs and that if they wish to sway others to their beliefs that they must argue them well, rather than appealing to imaginary threats and "because!"

The difficulty is that ignorance is a choice. People have the power to say, "Whatever, I dont' care."



Nonsense. People's faith in people is rooted in logic. If your best friend asked you to borrow 50 dollars and you had it to spare, you'd probably give it to him. If a random stranger asked you for 50 bucks you'd probably not do the same. Even if you didn't expect it back you might still do it for the logical reason of "I desire to see my friend happy. Giving my friend money will make him happy. I can afford to give him money. I should give him the money."

There's still a logical process going on.

Word.


Except they do believe in logic. They just try and have it both ways. When someone says they don't believe in logic the simple counter is (besides the fact that logic is how our brains work) to point out that they do not stand in front of moving cars.

Somehow, people believe that logic is a switch that can be turned on and off at their convenience. How do you counter such an argument, since even if you can prove that you are right, they will not feel compelled at all to change their ways?


Ideas exist only in the hearts and minds of men. And works are verbs, not nouns. They are things that happen when people act on their ideas. Ultimately you get back to the fact that a group is just an aggregate of people and has no life or existence beyond its parts.


Except these are organizations you can willingly join or leave and which are based around a shared ideology. If you are a willing member of an ideological organization you are - by the simple act of being a member - implicitly saying that you approve of it. When we are confronted with evil we have the moral obligation to resist it or, at the very least, not to help it. By joining an evil organization you show your support and also more likely than not aid it in some way. So while the beliefs and orders may come down from 'on high' your continued acceptance of these orders is tantamount to saying that were you in command you would do similar or the same.


See above.

Um, maybe I was unclear about my argument, but you just agreed with me. It is upon the general members of an organization to take the blame and subsequently disband and destroy said group. Accusing those at the top of the pyramid, as people often do, is useless.


If we accept that there exists evil - however you define it - and that God is omnipotent and omniscient, then the only logical conclusion is that God is evil. Period. There can be no alternative. No matter how you define evil the fact comes down to the fact that God is able and aware of it and yet does nothing to stop it.

You need a definition, or at least some sort of very general guidelines referring to the denotation and most frequent connotations of the word. I could define evil people as anyone who doesn't agree with me. Also, calling God evil without defining evil at all is futile.

Guess what, Kodos, you're evil.

See? No one gains or loses anything by such a vague statement. If I were to specifiy evil, people might be more convinced to shun you, or God, or whoever is receiving such a label. Words like evil are created by man; there is no objective and concrete, physical evil.



Nothing. Morality all ultimately boils down in a way to might makes right. But the fact remains that systems of morality like the one I have espoused are the sort that allow for most people to live extremely happy and rewarding lives without much hassle. Additionally there are logical reasons to behave.

Goes back to people needing to use logic.

Anyways, I like to think that the best way to live is the one which places the least material requirements. Once we attach ourselves to anything physical (outside of food, protection from the elements, and medicine) we open ourselves to a world of potential loss and pain. The less you have, the harder it is to be hurt.


And whatever the word you use, the point is that if you can't see how a human differs from other animals you are retarded.

Just wanted to point out another example of how words can have such little meaning without definition. I know humans are different, but not how, and I'm pretty sure most of the world doesn't have the scientific knowledge to explain it properly, even if they observe it on some level. Thus, most of the world is retarded, and the weight of that description is greatly lessened.

Kodos
01-23-2011, 02:56 PM
The difficulty is that ignorance is a choice. People have the power to say, "Whatever, I dont' care."




Word.



Somehow, people believe that logic is a switch that can be turned on and off at their convenience. How do you counter such an argument, since even if you can prove that you are right, they will not feel compelled at all to change their ways?





Um, maybe I was unclear about my argument, but you just agreed with me. It is upon the general members of an organization to take the blame and subsequently disband and destroy said group. Accusing those at the top of the pyramid, as people often do, is useless.



You need a definition, or at least some sort of very general guidelines referring to the denotation and most frequent connotations of the word. I could define evil people as anyone who doesn't agree with me. Also, calling God evil without defining evil at all is futile.

Guess what, Kodos, you're evil.

See? No one gains or loses anything by such a vague statement. If I were to specifiy evil, people might be more convinced to shun you, or God, or whoever is receiving such a label. Words like evil are created by man; there is no objective and concrete, physical evil.
I disagree here and can logically demonstrate it. Watch:
Premise 1. God is omnipotent.
Premise 2. God is omniscient.
Conclusion: Anything that happens happens only by God's allowance.
Premise 1. God is omnipotent and omniscient and ergo can prevent any action he does not care for from happening.
Premise 2. God is omnipotent ergo any action he takes costs him literally nothing in terms of effort.
Conclusion: Anything that happens can be said to happen only either with God's direct approval or God's utter indifference.
Premise 1. [Any definition of evil]
Premise 2. Evil happens.
Conclusion: Evil happens only because of God's approval and/or callous indifference.

See? How you define evil does not matter. As long as you believe in some definition of evil and in the omnipotence and omniscience of God, then God's culpability is inevitable. The above is a deductive argument. You must fault a premise in order for it to be false.



Anyways, I like to think that the best way to live is the one which places the least material requirements. Once we attach ourselves to anything physical (outside of food, protection from the elements, and medicine) we open ourselves to a world of potential loss and pain.
That's silly. It's one thing to be unnecessarily addicted to possessions and to value things over people, but there is nothing wrong with liking nice things.


The less you have, the harder it is to be hurt.
If a man with much loses 10,000 dollars odds are he will not starve to death. If a man with little loses 1,000 dollars there is a very real chance he will starve.


Just wanted to point out another example of how words can have such little meaning without definition. I know humans are different, but not how, and I'm pretty sure most of the world doesn't have the scientific knowledge to explain it properly, even if they observe it on some level. Thus, most of the world is retarded, and the weight of that description is greatly lessened.
Intelligence. It is overwhelmingly likely that the difference between humans and other animals is one of degree and not kind. It is not that we have some unique trait that no other animal has, it's simply that we have a certain trait (intelligence) in far greater abundance than they have. And either way, science can and does identify the ways human differ. We have civilization, science, and culture. No other animal has the first two things, and with the possible exception of a few higher primates nothing else we know of has anything resembling culture.

That said, I am strongly leaning towards the idea of cetacean personhood. Given what we know of dolphins it seems to me that any society that can consider the mentally retarded to be persons must also do the same for dolphins. But that is neither here nor there.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-23-2011, 03:10 PM
But now they are forced to adopt philosophies that force them to use logic and argumentation to justify their beliefs.

Why?

Kodos
01-23-2011, 03:22 PM
Because they will be living in a society that no longer considers "FAITH!/Because!" a valid justification for beliefs or actions and would be, at best, ostracized if they continued to behave in such a manner.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-23-2011, 07:11 PM
Because they will be living in a society that no longer considers "FAITH!/Because!" a valid justification for beliefs or actions and would be, at best, ostracized if they continued to behave in such a manner.

I... No? Is this a world where Religion never existed? Or one where you killed all the theists?

Kodos
01-23-2011, 07:58 PM
It's the hypothetical world in which religion is no longer existent or accepted in the mainstream and seen for what it is. I never said anything about killing anyone. Social engineering could accomplish this goal.

Fenn
01-23-2011, 08:07 PM
I disagree here and can logically demonstrate it. Watch:
Premise 1. God is omnipotent.
Premise 2. God is omniscient.
Conclusion: Anything that happens happens only by God's allowance.
Premise 1. God is omnipotent and omniscient and ergo can prevent any action he does not care for from happening.
Premise 2. God is omnipotent ergo any action he takes costs him literally nothing in terms of effort.
Conclusion: Anything that happens can be said to happen only either with God's direct approval or God's utter indifference.
Premise 1. [Any definition of evil]
Premise 2. Evil happens.
Conclusion: Evil happens only because of God's approval and/or callous indifference.

See? How you define evil does not matter. As long as you believe in some definition of evil and in the omnipotence and omniscience of God, then God's culpability is inevitable. The above is a deductive argument. You must fault a premise in order for it to be false.

Mkay, so you proved God is evil, but that doesn't change the fact that such proof is USELESS without a definition of evil. What if I consider "evil" a good thing? (which, based on my actual definition, I don't) Then I would say, "Cool, God is evil!" which I presume is contrary to what you are trying to say by labeling him thus.


That's silly. It's one thing to be unnecessarily addicted to possessions and to value things over people, but there is nothing wrong with liking nice things.
--
If a man with much loses 10,000 dollars odds are he will not starve to death. If a man with little loses 1,000 dollars there is a very real chance he will starve.

First, I said outside of necessary food, protection from the elements, and health. Loss of any of those three can and will severly hinder that person's potential for enjoyment. Second, I never said liking things was bad. I said material REQUIREMENTS. When people lose their ability to enjoy life without some sort of mandatory material aid, they become far more vulnerable. The best way (<<< opinion) to be happy is to enjoy life itself. I.e. enjoy images, sounds, feelings, smells, tastes, memories, and also the various of intangibles.

It costs no money, barely any effort, and only as much time as you wish to spend to sit down and stare at a sunset, spend casual time with a friend, or listen to music being played on a city block. These, I have found, are much more reliable and pure forms of enjoyment than can be provided by material pleasures.


Intelligence. It is overwhelmingly likely that the difference between humans and other animals is one of degree and not kind. It is not that we have some unique trait that no other animal has, it's simply that we have a certain trait (intelligence) in far greater abundance than they have. And either way, science can and does identify the ways human differ. We have civilization, science, and culture. No other animal has the first two things, and with the possible exception of a few higher primates nothing else we know of has anything resembling culture.

That said, I am strongly leaning towards the idea of cetacean personhood. Given what we know of dolphins it seems to me that any society that can consider the mentally retarded to be persons must also do the same for dolphins. But that is neither here nor there.

Digression aside, it was still mean to call DemonKaiser a retard. Don't be mean. It's not nice.

Unless it wasn't an insult and just a descriptive word. But it sounded slightly malicious. And mean.

Kodos
01-23-2011, 08:31 PM
Mkay, so you proved God is evil, but that doesn't change the fact that such proof is USELESS without a definition of evil. What if I consider "evil" a good thing?
Evil is by definition not a good thing. It's a logical contradiction like "married bachelor" or "justified murder". If you accept that evil exists then you accept that it is bad. That is what it means for something to be evil.


(which, based on my actual definition, I don't) Then I would say, "Cool, God is evil!" which I presume is contrary to what you are trying to say by labeling him thus.
See above.


First, I said outside of necessary food, protection from the elements, and health. Loss of any of those three can and will severly hinder that person's potential for enjoyment. Second, I never said liking things was bad. I said material REQUIREMENTS. When people lose their ability to enjoy life without some sort of mandatory material aid, they become far more vulnerable. The best way (<<< opinion) to be happy is to enjoy life itself. I.e. enjoy images, sounds, feelings, smells, tastes, memories, and also the various of intangibles.
We live in a world owned and run by massive and evil corporations. Living a happy life without a fair deal of money is extremely difficult.


It costs no money, barely any effort, and only as much time as you wish to spend to sit down and stare at a sunset, spend casual time with a friend, or listen to music being played on a city block. These, I have found, are much more reliable and pure forms of enjoyment than can be provided by material pleasures.
One must work long and hard to sustain a reasonable lifestyle. That limits the time one can spend enjoying the arts and leisure time. Money does not equal happiness, but it does provide one with the time in which to seek happiness.


Digression aside, it was still mean to call DemonKaiser a retard. Don't be mean. It's not nice.
I didn't.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-23-2011, 08:59 PM
It's the hypothetical world in which religion is no longer existent or accepted in the mainstream and seen for what it is. I never said anything about killing anyone. Social engineering could accomplish this goal.

Could, wont. [/Pessimist]


Evil is by definition not a good thing. It's a logical contradiction like "married bachelor" or "justified murder". If you accept that evil exists then you accept that it is bad. That is what it means for something to be evil.

Evil is subjective. Some people think that getting an abortion, or having premarital sex is evil.

Kodos
01-23-2011, 09:01 PM
No. What you consider evil is subjective. That evil is bad is objectively part of the definition. My logical proof works for literally any standard of good and evil. Again, it's like murder. What you consider murder may vary, but murder is by definition wrong. It's a word that means "wrongful killing." You cannot have a justified murder. The only room for variability is whether or not a specific killing is murder. Once you agree it is murder you agree it is evil. Likewise evil is by definition bad and wrong. Once you agree something is evil you automatically agree it is bad and wrong.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-23-2011, 09:05 PM
What you consider evil is subjective.

That's a negligible difference.

Kodos
01-23-2011, 09:12 PM
No it is not. It's a massive fucking difference. Can you really not see how the literal definition of a term and what things can be described by that term are different? It's like saying whether or not "red" means "a color" or "food made with chicken" and whether or not my hair is red are the same thing.

DemonKaiser93
01-23-2011, 09:59 PM
So.. the point you want to reach is... that humans are superior to animals... and that we cannot be clasified as animals, because ,we are more inteligent and/or have more reasoning... right?

Kodos
01-23-2011, 10:05 PM
Superior is a value judgment. I'd say that humans are superior to other animals though, yes. But that's not my point. My point is that humans are demonstrably different from other animals and that to pretend otherwise is silly. I never said we were not animals, you'd have to be a idiot to think that, I simply said that we are different from other animals and to talk about humans in the same way as other animals is silly.

Hell, other animals even behave and act differently. You would not talk of an amoeba, a cow, and a orangutan in the same terms.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-23-2011, 10:13 PM
No it is not. It's a massive fucking difference. Can you really not see how the literal definition of a term and what things can be described by that term are different? It's like saying whether or not "red" means "a color" or "food made with chicken" and whether or not my hair is red are the same thing.

"Evil is subjective" and "What you consider evil is subjective" are very similar. What I said means what's considered evil is subjective. What you said specifies WHO. The difference is who you're adressing.

Kodos
01-23-2011, 10:25 PM
Then your initial point makes even less sense since, like I said, my logical argument works for any definition of evil. As long as you accept that such a thing as evil exists - as well as the other premises - then you must accept the conclusions. The only "out" is to deny one of the premises or more - which invariably leads to a rejection of Christianity.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-23-2011, 10:33 PM
Then your initial point makes even less sense since, like I said, my logical argument works for any definition of evil. As long as you accept that such a thing as evil exists - as well as the other premises - then you must accept the conclusions. The only "out" is to deny one of the premises or more - which invariably leads to a rejection of Christianity.

My initial point that people have a differing opinion of what's evil. That makes no sense? I'm tired, maybe this will make more sense Monday.

Kodos
01-23-2011, 10:35 PM
It makes no sense because that is entirely irrelevant to my argument. For the umpteenth time: the argument works with any definition of evil. Period. As long as you accept that there is such a thing as evil and that it exists in the world then the argument holds true. Period. Whether you define evil as "hurting people" or "not hurting people" is totally unimportant to the argument.

Fenn
01-24-2011, 06:53 PM
Evil is by definition not a good thing. It's a logical contradiction like "married bachelor" or "justified murder". If you accept that evil exists then you accept that it is bad. That is what it means for something to be evil.


See above.

Thank you. That wasn't so hard, now, was it? ;)



We live in a world owned and run by massive and evil corporations. Living a happy life without a fair deal of money is extremely difficult.


One must work long and hard to sustain a reasonable lifestyle. That limits the time one can spend enjoying the arts and leisure time. Money does not equal happiness, but it does provide one with the time in which to seek happiness.

True. But, if the only REQUIREMENT one has for enjoyment is time, far less work is required relative to the person who must always have material possesions to enjoy the free time they have. Don't get me wrong; life requires tons of effort, time, and hard work. But throwing additional requirements onto the neccesities of life (food, protection, non-disposible income) makes enjoying life even more challenging.

Don't forget that work IS a part of life as well. It is plausible in some cases, with the right attitude, to enjoy a job even if it isn't your dream job. Not always, but sometimes.


I didn't.

My comprehension fail. Not that verbal insults hold any objective weight whatsoever.

Delphinus
01-25-2011, 04:21 AM
But, if the only REQUIREMENT one has for enjoyment is time, far less work is required relative to the person who must always have material possesions to enjoy the free time they have. Don't get me wrong; life requires tons of effort, time, and hard work. But throwing additional requirements onto the neccesities of life (food, protection, non-disposible income) makes enjoying life even more challenging.
Have you ever tried living in a house with ragged wallpaper where the heating is all provided by a small stove in the kitchen, and where you don't have enough money to run a television or even, occasionally, provide enough light to read by, unless you want to starve for a week? Arguably all basic needs are provided for - food, shelter, protection from the outside world - but you'd be an idiot to claim that's an enjoyable lifestyle. It's all about money in this land of milk and honey.


Don't forget that work IS a part of life as well. It is plausible in some cases, with the right attitude, to enjoy a job even if it isn't your dream job. Not always, but sometimes.
Work does not need to be a part of life, but it is. Most people either don't enjoy their jobs or have to teach themselves to enjoy them over a period of time - arguably, that's just a form of self-conditioning and not how they actually feel. Why should people work? It's not a psychological necessity.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-25-2011, 03:42 PM
Have you ever tried living in a house with ragged wallpaper where the heating is all provided by a small stove in the kitchen, and where you don't have enough money to run a television or even, occasionally, provide enough light to read by, unless you want to starve for a week? Arguably all basic needs are provided for - food, shelter, protection from the outside world - but you'd be an idiot to claim that's an enjoyable lifestyle. It's all about money in this land of milk and honey.

Bhutan is considerably less wealthy (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Understatement) then America or the UK, and is the 8th happiest country in the world (and the happiest in Asia). So no, not really.

Fenn
01-25-2011, 06:26 PM
Have you ever tried living in a house with ragged wallpaper where the heating is all provided by a small stove in the kitchen, and where you don't have enough money to run a television or even, occasionally, provide enough light to read by, unless you want to starve for a week? Arguably all basic needs are provided for - food, shelter, protection from the outside world - but you'd be an idiot to claim that's an enjoyable lifestyle. It's all about money in this land of milk and honey.

Never tried it myself, but call me an idiot for saying I'd claim its possible. People I know who have visited some of the poorest countries in the world return marveling at how "happy" some of those impoverished people are (depending on the place and circumstances).

Also:
http://bostonherald.com/news/regional/view.bg?articleid=1311794&position=1

I'm trying to figure out what to make of this article. Her life seems like it absolutely sucked, but at her present stage, she appears...content. I'm sure there's more to this I'm missing, but if this person can find some sort of redeeming quality to life, shouldn't many more people be able to? (granted there is a high probability she has a mental disorder)


Work does not need to be a part of life, but it is. Most people either don't enjoy their jobs or have to teach themselves to enjoy them over a period of time - arguably, that's just a form of self-conditioning and not how they actually feel. Why should people work? It's not a psychological necessity.

The first sentence there is important. Work, at this point, is unavoidable, and probably will be mandatory for me for all my life. Regardless, work CAN be a form of enjoyment. You would be very ignorant to claim there is no one who enjoys their job. Sure, adjusting ones attitude is a form of adaptation, but is it negative? We could argue ideals all day, but in the real world, being able to adapt and find enjoyment from unexpected sources is a useful trait.

Delphinus
01-25-2011, 06:53 PM
Never tried it myself, but call me an idiot for saying I'd claim its possible. People I know who have visited some of the poorest countries in the world return marveling at how "happy" some of those impoverished people are (depending on the place and circumstances).
I've been there and done that (albeit only for 2 or 3 days). It was unbelievably miserable and depressing. Normally in the case of these impoverished people their cultural needs are met by their community and they're not isolated; I'm willing to bet that if you took away the communal aspect of their existence they'd become depressed and lonely pretty damn quickly.


Sure, adjusting ones attitude is a form of adaptation, but is it negative? We could argue ideals all day, but in the real world, being able to adapt and find enjoyment from unexpected sources is a useful trait.

Useful, yes. Potentially psychologically damaging, also yes, as anyone who's been in an abusive relationship could tell you. There's a difference between adapting to unusual circumstances and adapting to circumstances that don't bring you pleasure.

butternut
01-26-2011, 05:06 AM
Have you ever tried living in a house with ragged wallpaper where the heating is all provided by a small stove in the kitchen, and where you don't have enough money to run a television or even, occasionally, provide enough light to read by, unless you want to starve for a week? Arguably all basic needs are provided for - food, shelter, protection from the outside world - but you'd be an idiot to claim that's an enjoyable lifestyle. It's all about money in this land of milk and honey.


Never tried it myself, but call me an idiot for saying I'd claim its possible. People I know who have visited some of the poorest countries in the world return marveling at how "happy" some of those impoverished people are (depending on the place and circumstances).

Guys, this is subjective. And what makes one happy or not depends on the person, his background, and a million other things. If you have seen what pleasure is like, then you can't stay happy without it. From your own examples : a person who is used to staying in a nice house, with a television, and awesome food everyday will find it impossible to live without these things. But the people in the poor countries don't know what it's like to experience all that. For them pleasure would be something like living together, having a great feast on special occasions, good harvest(if they're farmers) and other such things which you might consider 'simple'. I know this and can say this for sure because I have experienced it. If you really want to argue and reach a consensus, take a common sample space.

But I do agree on one point. Take away pleasure from a person (be it in any form - whatever that person considers pleasure) and life is not really worth living for him, unless he's like a caveman (because the basic food, shelter and protection etc were his pleasures).

And about adaptability, I see nothing wrong with it. Adapting is one thing, just tolerating is another. Adapting is coming to like it. Tolerating is just bearing with it and sort of going along with it whether you like it or not. And I agree with Fenn, adaptability is a useful trait. If you can't/don't want to adapt, make things around you suit you. One way or another, it's you doing things, not waiting for things to change or escaping from them.

Fenn
01-26-2011, 09:34 PM
I've been there and done that (albeit only for 2 or 3 days). It was unbelievably miserable and depressing. Normally in the case of these impoverished people their cultural needs are met by their community and they're not isolated; I'm willing to bet that if you took away the communal aspect of their existence they'd become depressed and lonely pretty damn quickly.

I'll certainly take your word for it, but let me make a couple points. I don't know what your normal life is like, but I take it that was a pretty big switch. Also, I'm going to boldy presume you did not know the language fluently enough to hold complete conversations with those you were living with, unless you went with a group. And, like you said, it was only for three days. You could have still been in shock at the loss of things you had come to expect in life.

I also have more questions: were these people eating at least enough to give them passable health? Was the temperature also at least borderline acceptable to live in without notable discomfort? If not then they do not meet the criteria specified and have every reason to be miserable.

Lastly, removing the communal aspect from many ways of life, or life itself, will usually decrease the level of pleasure in that aspect. Most humans are, by nature, social creatures There are certainly introverted individuals who enjoy large levels of solitude, but even they are inclined to some sort of social interaction, usually with small, intimate groups. The company of others is a crucial piece of the pleasure puzzle for, I would guesstimate, the majority of people on this planet.


Useful, yes. Potentially psychologically damaging, also yes, as anyone who's been in an abusive relationship could tell you. There's a difference between adapting to unusual circumstances and adapting to circumstances that don't bring you pleasure.

There is also a difference between adapting to circumstances that don't bring you pleasure and circumstances that harm you. You can dislike a situation without being negatively affected by it. Furthermore, life will not cater to any human's whim and preference. We can try to make our life as close to ideal as possible, but for most of us this goal will fall short. When faced with undesirable circumstances, we can either avoid/change our situation if possible (usually the best in the case of a harmful situation like an abusive relationship or poverty), or change our attitude and perspective towards it. The latter option, in my opinion, is both realistic and very satisfying when applied to unfavorable, non-harmful circumstances such as a boring job or dull community.

There is nothing wrong with voluntarily changing one's perspectives on enjoyment to suit a situation, especially since attitude is often much more under our control than external environment.


Guys, this is subjective. And what makes one happy or not depends on the person, his background, and a million other things. If you have seen what pleasure is like, then you can't stay happy without it. From your own examples : a person who is used to staying in a nice house, with a television, and awesome food everyday will find it impossible to live without these things. But the people in the poor countries don't know what it's like to experience all that. For them pleasure would be something like living together, having a great feast on special occasions, good harvest(if they're farmers) and other such things which you might consider 'simple'. I know this and can say this for sure because I have experienced it. If you really want to argue and reach a consensus, take a common sample space.

Yes, you are right, it is subjective to a point. In essence niether of us can be right about what brings us pleasure. I'd just like to point out that saying someone else should be happy when their situation is grave as an excuse not to help said person enters into objective territory.


But I do agree on one point. Take away pleasure from a person (be it in any form - whatever that person considers pleasure) and life is not really worth living for him, unless he's like a caveman (because the basic food, shelter and protection etc were his pleasures).

If you mean all pleasure, than yes. Human survival instincts may kick in to degree, but as an increasing suicide rate can shown, no happiness can equal no purpose.


And about adaptability, I see nothing wrong with it. Adapting is one thing, just tolerating is another. Adapting is coming to like it. Tolerating is just bearing with it and sort of going along with it whether you like it or not. And I agree with Fenn, adaptability is a useful trait. If you can't/don't want to adapt, make things around you suit you. One way or another, it's you doing things, not waiting for things to change or escaping from them.

Thank's for the support. I want to clarify again that I don't believe adaption is the only answer, especially in the case of those in poverty or suffering from the effects of a terrible event or abusive lifestyle.

Point: I am NOT simply saying "deal with it."

Kodos
01-27-2011, 07:19 AM
So how about that God guy, huh?

butternut
01-27-2011, 07:34 AM
Oops! Sorry, the discussion kinda got side-tracked. (but the above post really cracked me up!)

Here's what I believe and think. I'm an agnostic. I don't really believe in religion, but I do understand why some things(traditions, teachings and all that blah) are followed, and don't understand why the others are being followed. But I don't see how it is evil or harmful to the world in general. Sure you can quote the examples of genocide, female oppression and other stuff the Church did in the past. But that was IN THE PAST. Right now, there are still a minority of people who strictly follow whatever is said in the books but that is a very small minority. I don't see any major destruction now. If you say that they are evil because they believe in evil things, or still think about doing something that will harm others, well, they are just thinking about it but not propagating it or actually doing it right? I just can't understand why you are so extreme about it. As long as nothing really bad is happening...

Kodos
01-27-2011, 07:58 AM
Oops! Sorry, the discussion kinda got side-tracked. (but the above post really cracked me up!)

Here's what I believe and think. I'm an agnostic. I don't really believe in religion, but I do understand why some things(traditions, teachings and all that blah) are followed, and don't understand why the others are being followed. But I don't see how it is evil or harmful to the world in general.
It is wrong, dangerous, and harmful for anyone, anywhere, to knowingly embrace ignorance. Doubly so when, in their ignorance, they begin to argue that some beliefs can be justified without logic. Once you have established that precedent anything is possible.


Sure you can quote the examples of genocide, female oppression and other stuff the Church did in the past. But that was IN THE PAST.
Yes. It's not like the Catholic Church still contributes towards misogyny, intolerance, and archaic ways of thinking. It's not like Christianity is a major driving force behind most hate groups in the West, as well as many of the atrocities in the Middle East committed by American invaders. It's not like the ongoing genocide in Palestine is motivated largely by religion, or rather justified by such, anyway.

Oh, wait, it is.

Religion is still the single largest cause of human misery and barrier to progress in the world.


Right now, there are still a minority of people who strictly follow whatever is said in the books but that is a very small minority.
It may or may not be a minority, but it is not very small. America is run by such people. Well, rather, by such people who use such idiots to keep and maintain power and justify their plutocratic policies.


I don't see any major destruction now.
Perpetual war in African and the Middle East, genocide, America invading and occupying foreign countries, fighting in the Philippines. Nope. Fighting between Sunni and Shi'a Muslims. Fighting between Muslims and Hindus. Nope. Definitely no major destruction wrought by religion going on atm!


If you say that they are evil because they believe in evil things, or still think about doing something that will harm others, well, they are just thinking about it but not propagating it or actually doing it right? I just can't understand why you are so extreme about it. As long as nothing really bad is happening...
See above.

Fenn
01-27-2011, 09:13 AM
Sorry about the sidetrack.

Hm, I wonder what will become of monotheistic religions once they fall into the realm of mythology? Society kind of trimmed and sugar-coated the stories of the gods of the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, etc. until they became like superheroes/symbolic figures. Can you see the same happening to the god(s) of Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and others, or will they be cast into the trash barrel of history?

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-27-2011, 09:24 AM
I have a question for Kodos:

Has any religious person anywhere, be it on the net or in life, made any compelling argument that has given you pause for thought?

Kodos
01-27-2011, 09:43 AM
Sorry about the sidetrack.

Hm, I wonder what will become of monotheistic religions once they fall into the realm of mythology? Society kind of trimmed and sugar-coated the stories of the gods of the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, etc. until they became like superheroes/symbolic figures. Can you see the same happening to the god(s) of Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and others, or will they be cast into the trash barrel of history?
Hopefully they will be remembered for what they were - horrible and destructive ideologies rooted in unreason that have caused more suffering in history than any other thing - and be preserved in history as warnings of the dangers of superstition, magical thinking, and unreason.


I have a question for Kodos:

Has any religious person anywhere, be it on the net or in life, made any compelling argument that has given you pause for thought?
I've had a few that gave me pause for thought insofar as it took a little while trying to figure out exactly what the fallacy at play was, and there's plenty that have been so incoherent that it took me considerable time to decipher and refute them, but I've yet to find any that were able to withstand even cursory scrutiny.

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-27-2011, 10:22 AM
Hm, I wonder what will become of monotheistic religions once they fall into the realm of mythology? Society kind of trimmed and sugar-coated the stories of the gods of the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, etc. until they became like superheroes/symbolic figures. Can you see the same happening to the god(s) of Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and others, or will they be cast into the trash barrel of history?

I know this wasn't directed at me, but I'll get in on the chat anyway.

Yes, ofcourse Judeo-Christian as well as the main asian faiths will fall into the catagory of mythology within time. That isn't to say they will be gone for good, their are still people in Norway and Denmark to this day who still believe in Odin, but you see what I mean. Mankind evolves and its ideas evolve along with them.

Although, since you mentioned the Greeks I will say this; I have a hard-on for the Ancient Greeks. They were an amazing collective of people who, you could say, were so ahead of their time in terms of artistry and politics (not medicine, but still) and even religion. The Greeks understood something that no monotheistic religion can, and in all probability ever will; We are better than our creators.

The Gods of Greek myth were jealous and petty and they envied humans because their lives were short, they had meaning, they had purpose, and after they died their names would be remembered. Whereas the Gods were eternal, envious and mercilessly cruel to humans they envied. It sounds obvious, but even an uneducated normal Greek person, even 4000 years ago, looking at the world (or the known world as its was then, which was essentially the Mediterrainian region) would think 'If there are beings that created all of us, then they are at best capricious and lazy and at worst complete and utter evil.' , but looking at many religious people today obvious clearly doesnt mean obvious.

They understood that, although they didn't believe this was the only life we had (they did ofcourse believe in an afterlife), this life had value, it had purpose and it was the envy of those who are divine.

Name me one major religion that plays on this idea today? All Judeo Christian faiths, aswell as most of major asian ones, play on the idea that it will be a blessed day when this life is over. This is just a trial run, the demo version of reality, and only after this life is over is when the real fun begins of serving and serving and serving.

I'd also like to add that throughout all of human history, in every country, culture, religion and time, there have been people held in high esteem. Heros, for want of a better term; Leonidas, Cochise, Joan of Arc, James Connolly, Wyatt Earp, and many thousands of others. People who have gone down in human history as greats. People who are sung, as some say. Now, if you are a secularist like myself, you look at these people, study their lives and think 'Wow, those people fought, and sometimes died, for freedom/equality/justice etc. They showed courage, honour and value for the people they cared about. They did the right thing, simply becuase it was the right thing to do.' If you believe in any of the monotheistic faiths you think; 'Wow, those people obeyed God/Allah/Yahweh etc and got the right results.' It cheapens them to say that. It degards them. They weren't brave, they weren't honourable, they were just following orders, and they followed those orders either to be rewarded after they were dead or to not be tortured forever after they were dead.

Religion degrades us. Its the biggest slap in the face to all of mankinds achievements.

Kodos
01-27-2011, 10:47 AM
Yes. I hate when I hear people credit God with man's mightiness. I've heard people attribute major works of art or music to God. Or, worse, medical achievements.

God didn't save your mother's life. Man did.

M3S1H
01-27-2011, 11:05 AM
What the hell does this have to do with rape? I'm not even going to argue about religion, it's something I can't prove to others but still believe in. It still is pretty funny though, the fact that you can prove most religions wrong using science. I'm not insulting either sides, I'm really interested in both science and religion, but both sides have yet to be proven. Morally, I'd go on an athiest's side, because they don't get mad and insult other religions like most Christians, (Specifically Christians because I've never seen a Jew or Muslim do it too much, but I'm not insulting Christianity.) but instead explain their point of view. I hate when athiests exclaim that there is no God, and it has yet to be proven, and how Priests scream that nothing needs to be proven - it's all ridiculous. Why does religion even matter? Just have a respect toward others, and don't push them into aggression - and they'll respect you. My best friends all have different religious views than me, and we like talking about our religions. Well, the bottom line is:

WTF DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH RAPE?!?!?!

Kodos
01-27-2011, 11:10 AM
What the hell does this have to do with rape?
If you'd bothered to read the OP you would know.


I'm not even going to argue about religion, it's something I can't prove to others but still believe in.
Don't you think it is horribly unreasonable for anyone, anywhere, to believe in something that is so insane they know they can't possibly justify it to others?


It still is pretty funny though, the fact that you can prove most religions wrong using science. I'm not insulting either sides, I'm really interested in both science and religion, but both sides have yet to be proven.
Except, no. Science has been proven, and religion has been as disproven as anything can be disproven.


Morally, I'd go on an athiest's side, because they don't get mad and insult other religions like most Christians, (Specifically Christians because I've never seen a Jew or Muslim do it too much, but I'm not insulting Christianity.)
Yeah. It's not like Muslims flew some planes into buildings or anything because of their religion.


but instead explain their point of view. I hate when athiests exclaim that there is no God, and it has yet to be proven, and how Priests scream that nothing needs to be proven - it's all ridiculous.
No, it's not.


Why does religion even matter?
The fundamental nature of the universe. The purpose of human existence. The nature of what constitutes a good life. Morals. These are all unimportant, you're right! How could we have all been so silly?!


Just have a respect toward others, and don't push them into aggression - and they'll respect you.
Yes. That has worked out very well, historically, for heretics and heathens.


My best friends all have different religious views than me, and we like talking about our religions. Well, the bottom line is:

WTF DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH RAPE?!?!?!
OP, MOTHERFUCKER, DO YOU KNOW IT?!

M3S1H
01-27-2011, 11:13 AM
There's a small mistake in #3, I said you can prove most religions wrong using science. Seems you interpreted it backwards, and on #4 I meant rage as in a fit. They get really agrresive in terms of their mood, whereas terrorists decide to go extreme and bomb freaking buildings. #5's response really caught my attention, as we really don't need to know. Instead of focusing on this religion-is-right-or-not, we should focus on how not to wipe out the world - we all know that if we make the slightest mistake our world will be thrown into turmoil and drag us with it, and instead of pulling together to help stop that, we're being absurd and trying to prove religion right or wrong. I'm pretty sure if the human race doesn't shape up the Earth, we'll all find out whether or not a God exists.

Delphinus
01-27-2011, 01:03 PM
We all know that if we make the slightest mistake our world will be thrown into turmoil and drag us with it.
The world is pretty resilient, you know.

Fenn
01-27-2011, 02:58 PM
I'd love to simply trust science as proven, except that it seems every week some theory is disproven or changed. Sure, I'm not going to doubt something simple like gravity, but the fact is the details and more complex theories...they keep changing! Look at research for mental illness, the nutritional values of foods, and our understanding of the forces. Conflicting reports keep showing up and turning ideas that were believed for thousands of years into controversial topic. If anyone wants to really know how it all works, they would need to devote practically all of their life to researching and reading reports on...everything!

While it's logical to trust the scientific method, trusting the sciences can be very misleading.

ClockHand
01-27-2011, 03:23 PM
Fenn@

Theories change because one of the goals of Science's is to find the less fake answer, with this said, when you make a theory, you need to prove it, but with the time new knowledges are gained and so the theory you developted could be disproved or approved. Doing this you are more closer to a less fake conclusion.

Gravity was already disproved.

Yeah, trusting in science can be very misleading. Why don't we all believe in Cthulhu, Valhala and that every event of the Earth was made by a wizard, that would be easier.

Bacon_Barbarian
01-27-2011, 03:29 PM
I've heard people attribute major works of art or music to God.

Whats wrong with that per se?



OP, MOTHERFUCKER, DO YOU KNOW IT?!

... Good man Kodos.

Delphinus
01-27-2011, 03:58 PM
I'd love to simply trust science as proven, except that it seems every week some theory is disproven or changed. Sure, I'm not going to doubt something simple like gravity, but the fact is the details and more complex theories...they keep changing!
This is not science. This is a particular hypothesis. You are not doubting the scientific method.

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
01-27-2011, 05:10 PM
Heres an interview I found on youtube just now of your best friend and mine, Bill O'Reilly and Dave Silverman debating about atheism. Linky:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2BCipg71LbI

Now, although Silverman was right in what he said, why didnt he just calmly explain how the tide works to this moron. Wouldn't that of deflated his argument?

Silberman could of handled this interview so much better. C'mon, its Bill O'Reilly.

Fenn
01-27-2011, 06:41 PM
This is not science. This is a particular hypothesis. You are not doubting the scientific method.

What? What is "this?" Stupid indefinite pronouns.

I know I wasn't doubting the method. But I think when faithful people try to convert to science and see how often studies and theories contradict each other, they become hesitant and turned off.

Delphinus
01-27-2011, 06:51 PM
What? What is "this?" Stupid indefinite pronouns.
The things you said in the post I quoted, silly. :P


I know I wasn't doubting the method. But I think when faithful people try to convert to science and see how often studies and theories contradict each other, they become hesitant and turned off.
You don't 'convert' to science - accepting science isn't a matter of faith, it's just a matter of accepting the evidence of observations of the physical world and how they're connected. The way the scientific method works is bound to give birth to contradictory theories about certain topics, and in my opinion the more theories (that are coincident with observed phenomena) the better - observations that weaken one theory may strengthen another.

Fenn
01-28-2011, 06:22 PM
The things you said in the post I quoted, silly. :P

http://www.awennis.ie/Images/Products/sheep.jpg

Well I feel sheepish.


You don't 'convert' to science - accepting science isn't a matter of faith, it's just a matter of accepting the evidence of observations of the physical world and how they're connected. The way the scientific method works is bound to give birth to contradictory theories about certain topics, and in my opinion the more theories (that are coincident with observed phenomena) the better - observations that weaken one theory may strengthen another.

I get it now. But it bothers me to think we can undauntingly belive in something that could have important implications (like X chemical is good for you) and have it turn out dead wrong (X chemical actually causes cancer). It's a hell of a lot more reliable than religion and far less harmful--usually--but it doesn't provide the guaranteed, 100% certain answer people often desire. Then again, as has been stated on the old forum the only certain truths are a priori statements.

And I would say you could "convert" to science if you formerly held a contrary position, like acceptance of faith. It's kind of just semantics though.

Kodos
01-28-2011, 06:41 PM
Anyone who appears on Fox News is an idiot. Period. I love Dawkins, but I can't stand that he appears on Fox. The proper response to that vile network is to ignore them at all times. They are barbarians and should be treated as such.

M3S1H
01-29-2011, 05:55 AM
...I don't want to be a kick in the nuts, but I think we should get back on topic...

toast
01-30-2011, 05:14 PM
...I don't want to be a kick in the nuts, but I think we should get back on topic...

I am pretty sure this thread is on topic.. it becomes off topic when everyone starts to talk about chinese food or something

Kodos
01-31-2011, 04:00 PM
Wo Hops in Chinatown makes the best Beef Chow Fan on Eris' green earth and if you disagree you are objectively wrong.

jubeh
01-31-2011, 07:12 PM
Stay on topic or I will ban you

Fenn
01-31-2011, 10:32 PM
Mkay...

On topic, if there's no God, what is the final word on the very fact anything exists rather than nothing?

Also, the KNOWN reality could just be a very small portion of an even greater reality (think the ending of Men In Black). While it would be foolish to even pretend to know or believe in any specific idea about this greater truth, would it not be equally foolhardly to proclaim with any certainty that there is NOTHING beyond our own universe that may be affecting it in ways we may one day come to know or percieve?

According to the Law of Conservation of Matter, matter cannot be created or destroyed. So how is there anything to begin with?

Kodos
02-01-2011, 02:21 AM
Mkay...

On topic, if there's no God, what is the final word on the very fact anything exists rather than nothing?
The existence or non-existence of God has absolutely no bearing on the question of solipsism.


Also, the KNOWN reality could just be a very small portion of an even greater reality (think the ending of Men In Black).
And there could be aliens on other planets. And there could be Godzilla in the mariana trench. And there could be a parallel universe where, right now, I am having sex with Scarlett Johansson, Christina Hendricks, and Kim Kardashian. and And everything you think you know could actually be wrong and you are the victim of the most organized and massive conspiracy ever as literally every single person you have ever met has been lying to you and part of this conspiracy.

There are infinite possibilities and most things are impossible to disprove. This is why skepticism is necessary. You must prove propositions, not disprove them. This is why the onus of proof is always on the theist. They are the one positing a thing, and thus they must prove that thing.


While it would be foolish to even pretend to know or believe in any specific idea about this greater truth, would it not be equally foolhardly to proclaim with any certainty that there is NOTHING beyond our own universe that may be affecting it in ways we may one day come to know or percieve?
No, it would not. There is something very foolish about saying "There is something affecting us in ways we don't understand! I literally know nothing about what this thing is, or how it is affecting us, or what its effects are, but somehow I know it exists even though I literally cannot name a single quality about it and ergo am completely full of nonsense!"


According to the Law of Conservation of Matter, matter cannot be created or destroyed. So how is there anything to begin with?
That's only a mystery if you assume that matter and energy were created. If you assume a steady state universe (in regards to the amount of matter in it, not the configurations, obviously) then this is not a problem at all. Also, again, it has nothing to do with God since using God to "solve" this "problem" just makes it worse.

For the billionth time, here's why.
The argument from first cause:
Premise 1. All things must have a creator.
Premise 2. The universe exists.
Conclusion 1. The universe has a creator.
Conclusion 2. The creator is God.
Now ignoring the fact that none of the premises suggest, let alone necessitate, that second conclusion, here is why that argument is literally worthless. If we accept the first premise then we run into:
Premise 3. God exists.
Conclusion 3. God has a creator.
Premise 4. God's Creator exists.
Conclusion 4. God's Creator has a creator.
Premise 5. God's Creator's Creator exists.
Premise 6. God's Creator's Creator has a creator.
So on and so forth into infinity. The apparent solution to this is to, of course, say that God is different and has no creator. But then you've modified the argument. Now the initial argument has become this:
Premise 1. Most things have creators.
But by modifying that first premise you now have weakened the argument. It's no longer a logical necessity, now it's merely a inductive argument. Thus the theist must somehow prove that God is uncreated but that the universe requires a creator. If they cannot offer any evidence either way then the logical thing is to resort to occam's razor in which case we assume that the universe is uncreated since that is the simpler explanation.

Fenn
02-01-2011, 04:54 PM
The existence or non-existence of God has absolutely no bearing on the question of solipsism

Got it. But I did say ANYTHING, including my own conscious, if that changes anything. And do you accept solipsism? Not sure if you answred this before. Since solipsism only recognizes the true existence of consciousness and thought, would that open up not necessarily the belief in, but the possibility of an eternal consciousness since the idea of consciousness being linked to matter, which is external, is not trusted? Note that the argument that things occured before one's conscious existence is also invalid because these events are also external and thereby distrusted.


And there could be aliens on other planets. And there could be Godzilla in the mariana trench. And there could be a parallel universe where, right now, I am having sex with Scarlett Johansson, Christina Hendricks, and Kim Kardashian. and And everything you think you know could actually be wrong and you are the victim of the most organized and massive conspiracy ever as literally every single person you have ever met has been lying to you and part of this conspiracy.

There are infinite possibilities and most things are impossible to disprove. This is why skepticism is necessary. You must prove propositions, not disprove them. This is why the onus of proof is always on the theist. They are the one positing a thing, and thus they must prove that thing.

Of course. But isn't science itself based on searching for explanations to events? Even though there is not way to be 100&#37; sure something is a coincedence, an attempt to try to find an answer to coincedences that appear "suspicious" is not unjustified, providing you know when to stop (and provided that the coincidence even matters).

Basically what I'm trying to say is, i don't BELIEVE in this other "thing" which I cannot describe, but have a hunch/instinct/hypothesis something else big in importance is out there.


No, it would not. There is something very foolish about saying "There is something affecting us in ways we don't understand! I literally know nothing about what this thing is, or how it is affecting us, or what its effects are, but somehow I know it exists even though I literally cannot name a single quality about it and ergo am completely full of nonsense!"

And something equally foolish in saying "there is certainly nothing else affecting us; we know everything." Sometimes I have interpreted your argument as saying that the times of scientists discovering earth-shattering revelations about existence are over and we know all we ever will about the "big questions."


That's only a mystery if you assume that matter and energy were created. If you assume a steady state universe (in regards to the amount of matter in it, not the configurations, obviously) then this is not a problem at all. Also, again, it has nothing to do with God since using God to "solve" this "problem" just makes it worse.

For the billionth time, here's why.
The argument from first cause:
Premise 1. All things must have a creator.
Premise 2. The universe exists.
Conclusion 1. The universe has a creator.
Conclusion 2. The creator is God.
Now ignoring the fact that none of the premises suggest, let alone necessitate, that second conclusion, here is why that argument is literally worthless. If we accept the first premise then we run into:
Premise 3. God exists.
Conclusion 3. God has a creator.
Premise 4. God's Creator exists.
Conclusion 4. God's Creator has a creator.
Premise 5. God's Creator's Creator exists.
Premise 6. God's Creator's Creator has a creator.
So on and so forth into infinity. The apparent solution to this is to, of course, say that God is different and has no creator. But then you've modified the argument. Now the initial argument has become this:
Premise 1. Most things have creators.
But by modifying that first premise you now have weakened the argument. It's no longer a logical necessity, now it's merely a inductive argument. Thus the theist must somehow prove that God is uncreated but that the universe requires a creator. If they cannot offer any evidence either way then the logical thing is to resort to occam's razor in which case we assume that the universe is uncreated since that is the simpler explanation.

I always understand stuff better when you frame it like that. You must be getting tired of repeating yourself though.

Anyways, I just feel like humankind takes far too selfcentered of an attitude towards everything. As if they do not realize that our life may just as well be a fraction of the absolute reality. Yet no one can pull themselves away to see the pure beauty of the fact that there is an existence. This doesn't have anything to do with God except the way people view the world. Theists see God at the center. Remove God, and what becomes the center? Known reality, or individual consciousness? Is there no center? What is the nature of existence? Looking at life out-of-body one might realize how absolutely incredible it is that anything exists at all, let alone that a part of existence can realize said existence.

Since God does not explain existence at all, what does? And even if there is no answer, what can be said about the nature of existence versus non-existence?

Delphinus
02-01-2011, 05:46 PM
The centre of reality? There is only one certainty to reality: COGITO ERGO SUM - I THINK THEREFORE I AM. You may have heard of it. Although modern philosophy makes a slight alteration: THERE ARE THOUGHTS THEREFORE THERE IS A THINKER.

Everything else is just a matter of belief, aside from a priori statements (which are ultimately only about the nature of language). 1+1 must equal 2 by definition. By definition, a batchelor must be an unmarried man. By definition, God cannot exist. All of these are tautologies.

A batchelor is defined as a male human who is not married to another human.

Fenn
02-02-2011, 10:41 AM
The centre of reality? There is only one certainty to reality: COGITO ERGO SUM - I THINK THEREFORE I AM. You may have heard of it. Although modern philosophy makes a slight alteration: THERE ARE THOUGHTS THEREFORE THERE IS A THINKER.

Everything else is just a matter of belief, aside from a priori statements (which are ultimately only about the nature of language). 1+1 must equal 2 by definition. By definition, a batchelor must be an unmarried man. By definition, God cannot exist. All of these are tautologies.

A batchelor is defined as a male human who is not married to another human.

BINGO! So why has that not become the center of human perspective? Everyone seems to forget that that concept is the most important thing. They find the need to cling to God, or other external existences for purpose. I guess then the question is, why was God "created" persay, and why can't we shed him now?

Bacon_Barbarian
02-03-2011, 06:22 PM
Why? You're kidding? To explain shit, and give some primitive people hope for something better later on. And-um... Who knows why he can't be shed. Same reason I guess. Life sucks, people, INTELLIGENT PEOPLE, want something better later on. Even if it is foolish.

Fenn
02-03-2011, 07:17 PM
Why? You're kidding? To explain shit, and give some primitive people hope for something better later on. And-um... Who knows why he can't be shed. Same reason I guess. Life sucks, people, INTELLIGENT PEOPLE, want something better later on. Even if it is foolish.

Yeah...the first part might have been a stupid question. But the second...it frustrates me that the majority of the human race still cannot grasp the concept of logic.

Rio
02-03-2011, 08:24 PM
There will always be the part of humans that defies logic. Love. Dreams. Hopes. Why we prefer to buy items that are a penny or a dollar short of a round number. If you have a world where all humans think on logic and only logic, I suspect we'll become a monotonous, boring world. We'd be no better off than being robots.

Anyways, I think humans still believe in God because we do not understand everything. We put a name to the things that happen at that are unexplainable, horrendous, miraculous, and so on. Maybe we do not want to be alone. Maybe we want someone out there who unconditionally love us for who we are and can attribute things that happen that we cannot explain in any logical manner.

Saith
02-04-2011, 03:19 PM
The problem with people who believe in the God of the Gaps is that, when a gap is bisected, they claim there are simply two gaps to fill.

The problem for people who believe in the God of the Gaps is that as every proof of His existence is revealed to be merely, you know, actual stuff, it's incredibly embarrassing to admit so, and it definitely lowers your credibility.
Basically, if God's existence were on trial, a Theist would be discounted as an unreliable witness.

That's why I don't think God should be the default answer for what we don't understand.

And, I mean, if you agree with certain anthropologists, Love, Dreams and Hope are all certainly logical behaviour. Logic doesn't really mean lacking emotions or being the most efficient, it's rather the word used to describe the method of rationally following one thought with another.

Kodos
02-04-2011, 09:30 PM
There will always be the part of humans that defies logic. Love.
Emotions work on logic. Simply a faulty and fallacy ridden form of it, but they are still rooted in logic. When you love person you love them for reasons. It is a logical argument of some sort.
Premise 1. This woman is fun to be around.
Premise 2. This woman is intelligent and witty.
Premise 3. This woman is single and unrelated to myself.
Premise 4. This woman has rocking titties.
Conclusion. I am in love with this woman.

There is a reason people become friends and/or lovers only with certain people and don't treat everyone equally.


Dreams. Hopes.
See above.


Why we prefer to buy items that are a penny or a dollar short of a round number.
Quirks and phobias are irrational but still rooted in logic. Every single thing a human does is rooted in logic with the possible exception of extreme cases of schizophrenia. Our brains are hardwired and run on logic. It's like talking about a computer and assuming it is somehow able to run programs that don't use programming code of some sort.


If you have a world where all humans think on logic and only logic, I suspect we'll become a monotonous, boring world. We'd be no better off than being robots.
Except we do. And there is no difference between a sufficiently advanced robot or computer and a human mind except that one uses meat for hardware while the other is plastic and metal.


Anyways, I think humans still believe in God because we do not understand everything. We put a name to the things that happen at that are unexplainable, horrendous, miraculous, and so on. Maybe we do not want to be alone. Maybe we want someone out there who unconditionally love us for who we are and can attribute things that happen that we cannot explain in any logical manner.
Except it's still logical. Just bad logic. Ultimately we get back to the fact that no one can argue against logic.
Premise 1. Something unexplainable happened!
Premise 2. God has the power to do anything.
Conclusion. God did it!

Fenn
02-04-2011, 10:02 PM
Rio I don't think a focus on "correct" logic (to utilize Kodos' argument) would bore the world. There are really very few logical rules that need to be followed to create a safe society. You can live based on correct logic and still be romantic, creative, and even silly because nothing says you have to follow what is held as "common logic." In fact it may still be logical. I'm gonna try doing Kodos' premises/conclusion thing. Correct me if I'm wrong, buddy.

Premise 1: My actions should not hurt anyone else.
Premise 2: I can use my imagination as long as I recognize reality when needed.
Premise 3: I want to enjoy life.
Premise 4: Imagining that I am in an action movie does not hurt anyone else.
Premise 5: I realize that I am not really in an action movie.
Premise 6: I enjoy imagining that I am in an action movie in my daily life.
Conclusion: I will imagine I am in an action movie!

PWhit
02-05-2011, 11:54 PM
I'm wondering why nobody is a satanist after any of this religious debating. I already am to begin with.

Saith
02-06-2011, 03:33 AM
Because Satanism, at least Biblical Satanism, is pretty dumb.
I mean, it would pretty much mean that you believe in God, but you choose to worship a weaker, evil being.
If you're on about LeVayanism, then sure go for it.

Kodos
02-06-2011, 05:20 AM
Why would anyone be a Satanist? Satan does not exist and LaVayen Satanism is just atheism with a big heaping dose of ego masturbation and a pinch of Randian objectivism.

Saith
02-06-2011, 06:42 AM
That's pretty much my opinion, yeah.
I so totally didn't spend an entire Summer preaching to my mates about how awesome and not-culty Levayanism is.

PWhit
02-06-2011, 11:00 AM
If you're on about LeVayanism, then sure go for it.

Yes, LeVayan.


Why would anyone be a Satanist? Satan does not exist and LaVayen Satanism is just atheism with a big heaping dose of ego masturbation and a pinch of Randian objectivism

If you have a problem with it, that's really just too bad. There are rituals that are not so ego-centric. Objectivisim, sure. That's something I legitimately can say I believe in.


I so totally didn't spend an entire Summer preaching to my mates about how awesome and not-culty Levayanism is

Quite frankly, I didn't either. In fact, I don't even participate in the rituals because, that's where I draw the line.

Delphinus
02-06-2011, 02:03 PM
If you have a problem with it, that's really just too bad. There are rituals that are not so ego-centric. Objectivisim, sure. That's something I legitimately can say I believe in.
How do you react to this: Rand claims that humans use logic as their tool of survival and that not serving logic is not serving the survival instinct and yet she fails to defend the survival instinct as a legitimate source of ethical behaviour. She goes on to accuse those who coerce, threaten, or harm others to get their way of being morally unjustified and 'no better than animals' yet she does not take into account situations where the survival instinct clashes against the survival instincts of others: for example in a situation where one must either kill and eat another human or die themselves. The logical course of action for one's own survival is clearly to kill and eat the other person, yet Rand would forbid this by claiming it interferes with the other individual's right to make a choice. If survival is on the line and we are forced to either restrict another's ability to make a choice or ourselves die, then Rand's philosophy is just as suicidal as the altruism she condemns.

TL;DR: Rand was an insane sociopath.

PWhit
02-06-2011, 03:37 PM
I personally don't follow Rand word for word. However, in this particular situation of life and death there are only two options presented when in reality there are more than two. You can go about this in many ways.

*Starve (presented as illogical)
*Cannibalize (presented as logical)
*Reason and ally with the other person in efforts to gather food (not presented)
*Use the environment to satisfy your hunger/thirst and leave the other alone. (not presented)
*Drink your own urine for a small source of protein and nutritional satiation for the time being. (not presented)
*Hunt an animal nearby. (not presented)
*Fill up on water. (not presented)
and so on.

While you choose these options, the other can do the same. So they will make the choice anyway; whether it is executed is a different matter. If you choose any of the not presented matters, you are following moral egoism.

Also, if the person lacks self-respect or gives himself or herself no reason to live, then they will starve, subtracting the egoism.
And if the person cannibalizes, they are subtracting moralism.

Even so, I never stated that I followed her word for word and word, so most likely if the only two choices were available, I would cannibalize anyway and be guilty later. Rand doesn't seem to cross me as an insane person to me. Maybe I am insane along with a fair part of the world that also agrees with her?

Saith
02-06-2011, 04:26 PM
Well, I mean, when you bring it to 'he die or you die, mofo', pretty much all morality goes out the window.

PWhit
02-06-2011, 04:47 PM
And I agree of course, but it doesn't mean you can't find other options.

Delphinus
02-06-2011, 05:13 PM
Even so, I never stated that I followed her word for word...
Then why call yourself an objectivist, other than for convenience? If you only broadly agree with Rand then you're just an individualist (which I can agree with; individualism makes infinitely more sense than collectivism in both theory and practice).


Rand doesn't seem to cross me as an insane person to me. Maybe I am insane along with a fair part of the world that also agrees with her?
Well, what is society and law but collective insanity?

EDIT: If you're wondering what moral system I follow, broadly speaking I hang somewhere between atheistic existentialism and absurdism, and I believe the only way an ideal and universal ethical, legal, or political system can be created is through transhumanism.

PWhit
02-06-2011, 05:29 PM
Then why call yourself an objectivist, other than for convenience? If you only broadly agree with Rand then you're just an individualist (which I can agree with; individualism makes infinitely more sense than collectivism in both theory and practice).

Well then let me put it this way then. I am an objectivist to a certain extent. I believe in it but not fully enough to call myself a true objectivist. I hope it makes a little more sense because I never side 100&#37; with one philosophy.

Delphinus
02-06-2011, 05:49 PM
^ Well fair enough, then.

Fabiafidus
02-06-2011, 06:00 PM
<-- Atheist. I find that everything is bound by logic, and has no borders with any mystic or strange bonds.

I look at life as if im an object. I have a brain that tells me that i am now functioning. to me, dead means that my puls is gone, not that a soul or non-being have left my corpse. Since all logic tells me that the brain is the scourse to all memory, sence and knowledge.

All my experiences is poured though my brain with electro vibes, to tell one component of my brain that i have experienced this thing right now.

What i experience will not be carried by a "non-being"

I can't deny my national religion, because if i lay on the ground, about to die, i will probably prey to god inside, even though i don't believe in it.

I am not critisizing any religion, i accept others beliefs, as long noone is trying to prove me anything.

Big bang, is just a theory, and big bang was first thought of because we have limits of how far our knowledge can comprehend.

We cant look back for eternity to see what created the universe, so for the time being or untill uncovered, a theory of big bang was created.

Back, hundred to thousand years ago, Astronomi and Religion was a shared thing, they were bound to each other.
But over the years, astronomical research started to bend the rules within religion and was now classified as science and began to expand as a atheist research subject. this later on became a way to study planets and the way they were created and while we cant say that the planets were created one or another way, we can still 100% guarantee how they acturally were created, through theories.

Theories are basicly a point, you stretch to it matches another bond, untill 100 or 1000 bonds are bound together and matches perfectly.

If so meny theories matched each other, based on what we allready know, we can in the end conclude that 99% of this, is true.

The same goes for the theory of Atoms, We dont acturally know they are there, but a "suggested" system (the periodic system) based on theories which matched each other, makes everything we know, fit together. And if it continues to match as we discover, we can in the end conclude it is true. BUT... if we in the end meet some strange experiences which doesnt match anything we know today, the theories fails.

This means we either have to come up with another theory to make these match with our current understanding. OR accept paranormality or over naturely beings in our world.

Delphinus
02-06-2011, 06:06 PM
^ Okay, TL;DR and did we really need a rehashing of the Scientific Method?

Fabiafidus
02-06-2011, 06:18 PM
haha acturally, dont read it. When i write about my own beliefs i allways tend to stretch it too far and creat bad karma. (<--- U c wut i did thar?)

Blue_Dragon
02-07-2011, 04:33 AM
I'm not a major advocate of the "big bang theory," but I thought I'd read somewhere that in some experiments, using only non-living elements/materials, and simulating a similar atmosphere to what we believe was found during the "big bang" period (for lack of a better term,) unicellular living organisms were actually created. I could be wrong, but I thought I'd learned that in my Environmental Ethics class (which was basically proven science vs Intelligent Design, which has no scientific proof and is just a rehashing of Creationism.)

If anyone's seen this information and can lead me to some sources, please do. If it takes too much work, don't bother.

butternut
02-07-2011, 04:57 AM
I'm confused. Are you talking about the 'Big Bang theory' when everything - the sun, planets, galaxies, gas-clouds and the universe basically were formed? or the Origin of Life on earth, when after a long time, Earth cooled down to form conditions ideal for existence of life? If it's the latter then check out the Miller-Urey experiment (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller&#37;E2%80%93Urey_experiment)(or just google search it). If it's the former, I don't think life was formed during the Big Bang.

Blue_Dragon
02-07-2011, 05:02 AM
Yeah man! That's what I was talking about, I think. But I think they were trying to see if life could be derived from non-living organisms, which would mean it is possible for the big bang theory to be true. Or at least, it shows that the basic building blocks of life can come from inorganic/nonliving materials. If that makes any sense.

butternut
02-07-2011, 05:11 AM
Yup that totally makes sense. Before all these experiments were conducted, people believed that 'living' and 'non-living' were two different things, and that either of them cannot be produced from the other. They actually had recipes for making mice (put some meat/insects or something in a box in certain conditions and leave it for a certain number of days, and voila!you have a mouse...something like that, it was damn funny when we read it at school). That was till they conducted these kind of experiments and proved them wrong.

Something I've always been wondering ever since I knew about DNA and stuff. When all we're made up of is just carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and just chemicals, where do our thoughts and feelings come from? how do we sense things? I know it's just electric signals and chemicals in our brain, but I guess it's just....hard to....imagine...

Blue_Dragon
02-07-2011, 05:38 AM
I think that's where the debate comes from. Well, part of the debate. What exactly animates us? What makes us have varying preferences? At present, there isn't a complete answer to this, which is why there is a lot of debate about whether we're all science, or if a "god" created us or not. Also, just because we don't have scientific evidence answering what makes our personal preferences exist, doesn't mean we won't find the answer.

Personally, I'm toying with the idea that perhaps God is energy. In this way, it is a part of everything, and is in everyone. I wonder if there isn't the possibility that God could be an intelligent from of life that is derived from energy and is completely energy (similar to what I think a "soul" could be.) Obviously I have no proof or logic, and it's just something I'm attempting to figure out myself, and therefore I'm not trying to persuade anyone to follow my beliefs. Though I am Christian, I think most of our current versions of the Bible have been altered an perverted to suit the needs of man(kind.) Which I know from reading previous posts would bring up the question "if God's Omnipotent and all powerful, why would it allow the holy word to be altered and misleading?" I guess I'd have to fall back on the "free will" argument--which I know is weak, so it's pointless to argue. That's why I know I'm technically "not Christian," but feel I am...which makes no sense. Anyway, I don't agree with what many Christians do, so I openly oppose my own "religion." Yeah, I'm going to hell I guess by most people's standards, but you know, no one really knows, so they're just as in the dark as anyone else...

Fabiafidus
02-07-2011, 06:13 AM
ahh. well the big bang theory was just a theory of how everything was created. life did come later.

I was just using the explanation to limit how far back in time we could see :p

I have a huge pile of dokumentary videos about the birth of galaxies and planets. oncluding how the earth got its atmosphera.

i could make a huuge post right now, but i dont think that would progress anything,, unless you acturally are wondering how it happended.

Blue_Dragon
02-07-2011, 06:17 AM
I think I'm good, but thanks :P Also, thanks for clarifying for me. Sorry if I misread (I do that sometimes...)

Fenn
02-07-2011, 09:19 AM
Um, can I re-ask a question? If one adheres to solipsism, would it be logical not to believe, but consider plausible, the concept of an eternal consciousness since the idea of a physical brain is unproven?

Kodos
02-07-2011, 09:39 AM
Um, can I re-ask a question? If one adheres to solipsism, would it be logical not to believe, but consider plausible, the concept of an eternal consciousness since the idea of a physical brain is unproven?
No. Because unless you consider solipsism plausible (there is a difference between possible and plausible, mind) you've already accepted that the external universe is the most plausible reality. Everything we know about the apparent external universe tells us that an eternally existing consciousness that continues to perpetuate itself even after the brain has ceased to function, or even been outright destroyed, is implausible if not literally impossible.

And if the only way you can even begin to make a belief seem plausible is by resorting to an appeal to solipsism, well that should tell you something about how insane that belief is.

Fenn
02-07-2011, 07:51 PM
No. Because unless you consider solipsism plausible (there is a difference between possible and plausible, mind) you've already accepted that the external universe is the most plausible reality. Everything we know about the apparent external universe tells us that an eternally existing consciousness that continues to perpetuate itself even after the brain has ceased to function, or even been outright destroyed, is implausible if not literally impossible.

And if the only way you can even begin to make a belief seem plausible is by resorting to an appeal to solipsism, well that should tell you something about how insane that belief is.

So I take it you don't agree with solipsism?

Kodos
02-07-2011, 09:41 PM
No one agrees with solipsism. The moment you share the idea with another person you betray your doubt in the concept.

Fenn
02-08-2011, 05:58 PM
No one agrees with solipsism. The moment you share the idea with another person you betray your doubt in the concept.

Haha so by asking that I manages a super-dooper-internet-logic fail? Sweet!

...but I thought we already discussed this in some form. Even if our known reality is false/doubted, the only realistic course of action, in fact the only possible action short of suicide/giving up, is to "play along." Is solipsism different than Cogito Ergo Sum, or am I just absolutely clueless?



...


...





...I'm going to go ice my brain now.

Delphinus
02-08-2011, 06:03 PM
^ Solipsism claims that the only things we can know are Cogito Ergo Sum, tautologies, and mathematical truths. Believing the truth-value of anything else automatically puts you outside of solipsism.

Fenn
02-10-2011, 10:15 PM
^ Solipsism claims that the only things we can know are Cogito Ergo Sum, tautologies, and mathematical truths. Believing the truth-value of anything else automatically puts you outside of solipsism.

So how does that make this...


Um, can I re-ask a question? If one adheres to solipsism, would it be logical not to believe, but consider plausible, the concept of an eternal consciousness since the idea of a physical brain is unproven?
...illogical? Even if I doubt a person's existence their logic can be correct.

Kodos
02-10-2011, 10:37 PM
So how does that make this...


...illogical? Even if I doubt a person's existence their logic can be correct.
"No. Because unless you consider solipsism plausible (there is a difference between possible and plausible, mind) you've already accepted that the external universe is the most plausible reality. Everything we know about the apparent external universe tells us that an eternally existing consciousness that continues to perpetuate itself even after the brain has ceased to function, or even been outright destroyed, is implausible if not literally impossible.

And if the only way you can even begin to make a belief seem plausible is by resorting to an appeal to solipsism, well that should tell you something about how insane that belief is. "

Fenn
02-11-2011, 04:26 PM
"No. Because unless you consider solipsism plausible (there is a difference between possible and plausible, mind) you've already accepted that the external universe is the most plausible reality. Everything we know about the apparent external universe tells us that an eternally existing consciousness that continues to perpetuate itself even after the brain has ceased to function, or even been outright destroyed, is implausible if not literally impossible.

And if the only way you can even begin to make a belief seem plausible is by resorting to an appeal to solipsism, well that should tell you something about how insane that belief is. "

Duh. So, what I understand of solipsism seems plausible. There are only two possibilities regarding the truth of external reality: it is the absolute truth or it isn't. And while I obviously live my life according to the laws of external reality, that doesn't mean I don't have doubts about it.

I can't see why you choose to adhere yourself(s) so firmly to the known external reality. Humans have been steadily increasing their understanding of the world and the state of human existence. Are you under the impression that every "revelation" we will have as beings about our existence has already occured? That we "know" all their is about the philosophy of existing?

Seriously, are we done with this facet of science and discovery? I'm asking you as I am clearly far too uneducated to even begin to answer this. My impression is that, as human history has showed us, we are just as likely to be seeing the tip of the iceberg as we are viewing the big picture. Thus, while I find it utterly foolish to (A) believe/suggest that God/a soul or other such concepts exist, (B) live under the impression that the external reality is false, I can't see the harm in keeping a healthy skepticism and a mild level of doubt that we have reached the pinnacle of human understanding of our own status.

I'm using way too many word again, and apologize for being so difficult to understand. Here's my point in short: I'm going to my deathbed without any expectation of an eternal consciousness, or heaven, or any of that. But if someone walks over to me and asks if heaven exists, I'm not going to simply say "no."

Kodos
02-13-2011, 11:11 PM
Duh. So, what I understand of solipsism seems plausible. There are only two possibilities regarding the truth of external reality: it is the absolute truth or it isn't. And while I obviously live my life according to the laws of external reality, that doesn't mean I don't have doubts about it.
Again, doubt is one thing. But clearly you don't doubt seriously.


I can't see why you choose to adhere yourself(s) so firmly to the known external reality.
Because anything else is an appeal to ignorance.


Humans have been steadily increasing their understanding of the world and the state of human existence. Are you under the impression that every "revelation" we will have as beings about our existence has already occured? That we "know" all their is about the philosophy of existing?
I've never said we now anything. But you can't possibly make decisions based on ignorance. It's literally impossible.


Seriously, are we done with this facet of science and discovery? I'm asking you as I am clearly far too uneducated to even begin to answer this. My impression is that, as human history has showed us, we are just as likely to be seeing the tip of the iceberg as we are viewing the big picture. Thus, while I find it utterly foolish to (A) believe/suggest that God/a soul or other such concepts exist, (B) live under the impression that the external reality is false, I can't see the harm in keeping a healthy skepticism and a mild level of doubt that we have reached the pinnacle of human understanding of our own status.
I agree. I've never said otherwise. But the point is that most of these religious concepts don't defy just one or two facets of what we know, but literally most or all of what we know. Additionally many of them are also literally logically impossible. Again, we can know with 100&#37; that the Judeo-Christian God does not exist because it is logically impossible. That there is no such being as Yahweh/Jehova/JHVH/The Trinity is an objective fact. Anyone who disagrees is simply wrong. Period. The belief contains logical contradictions and thus is a falsehood that can be derived as a priori knowledge.


I'm using way too many word again, and apologize for being so difficult to understand. Here's my point in short: I'm going to my deathbed without any expectation of an eternal consciousness, or heaven, or any of that. But if someone walks over to me and asks if heaven exists, I'm not going to simply say "no."
If someone walks up to you and asks if Sagan's Dragon really exists are you going to not say no?

Fenn
02-15-2011, 08:38 PM
Again, doubt is one thing. But clearly you don't doubt seriously.

Huh? But I do seriously doubt external reality. The again, everything we known is from our senses, and thus falls into external reality. So there can be nothing other than external reality. So, what I doubt is not external reality, but the known external reality. I don't hold a belief there is more, but I hypothesize there is something more that we have yet to discover about our existence.


Because anything else is an appeal to ignorance.

Allow me to clarify. I'm not saying to adhere to anything that doesn't exist. I'm more suggesting not to adhere so firmly at all, keep an open mind while sticking true to what you do know and believe for the time. The whole "anything is possible" idea, without the irrational behavior that accompanies the extreme of this concept.


I've never said we now anything. But you can't possibly make decisions based on ignorance. It's literally impossible.

See above, hopefully that answers that.


I agree. I've never said otherwise. But the point is that most of these religious concepts don't defy just one or two facets of what we know, but literally most or all of what we know. Additionally many of them are also literally logically impossible. Again, we can know with 100&#37; that the Judeo-Christian God does not exist because it is logically impossible. That there is no such being as Yahweh/Jehova/JHVH/The Trinity is an objective fact. Anyone who disagrees is simply wrong. Period. The belief contains logical contradictions and thus is a falsehood that can be derived as a priori knowledge.

I wasn't arguing that, although I can't blame you for assuming that since it is the topic.


If someone walks up to you and asks if Sagan's Dragon really exists are you going to not say no?

No idea what Sagan's Dragon is but I would say no. Even though there is practically no proof of either, I would say Sagan's Dragon is completely unlikely to exist. That concept was created by man; consciousness is the status of existence. Although our consciousness and logic tells us eternal consciousness can't exist, the fact that our consciousness is our reality itself...i need to keep thinking about how to phrase this...

Kodos
02-22-2011, 01:52 PM
In other news!
http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/495/sadvicegod693983.png

EDIT: For content.

Here's a thing to consider for those of you who feel the Bible is right in some places and wrong in others. Let us, for the moment, ignore the insanity of picking and choosing and other instances.

Suppose you asked me to write your biography. Suppose that in my finished biography of you that I got most of the broad strokes right, but when it came to the particulars I was often quite wrong. Suppose, further, that I often attributed quotes or actions to you that were extremely offensive and equally untrue. I say that you are a bigoted racist, a misogynist, a rapist, and a murderer. Would you not steps to ensure that people who read or might read the biography knew that I was wrong and that you not only never did these things, but disapprove of them in the extreme? If you did not take such steps, then, would it really be wrong of people to assume that you either did do these things or, at the very least, do not have any issue with them?

If the Bible exists - and it does, obviously - we are left with only six possible conclusions:
1. The Bible is an accurate depiction of God and his values.
2. The Bible is inaccurate in its depiction of God and his values but God is unwilling to correct it.
3. The Bible is inaccurate in its depiction of God and his values but God is unable to correct it.
4. The Bible is inaccurate in its depiction of God and his values but God is unaware of this.
6. The Bible is neither inaccurate nor accurate because it is describing an entirely fictional being.

In the first two options we are left with an evil God. In the third and fourth options we are left with a God so radically different in scope from the god of the Bible that we can say with certainty that the Bible is not describing this being at all. And in the last option we are obviously left with a similar conclusion in that whether or not there is a God or gods, the Bible is entirely unconcerned with the possible reality of such beings.

Delphinus
02-23-2011, 06:13 AM
http://i.imgur.com/oAnfA.jpg

=D

Fenn
02-23-2011, 11:54 AM
http://i.imgur.com/oAnfA.jpg

=D

I take it this is an analogy with regards to the Bible?

inb4nicejobgenius


In other news!
http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/495/sadvicegod693983.png

EDIT: For content.

Here's a thing to consider for those of you who feel the Bible is right in some places and wrong in others. Let us, for the moment, ignore the insanity of picking and choosing and other instances.

Suppose you asked me to write your biography. Suppose that in my finished biography of you that I got most of the broad strokes right, but when it came to the particulars I was often quite wrong. Suppose, further, that I often attributed quotes or actions to you that were extremely offensive and equally untrue. I say that you are a bigoted racist, a misogynist, a rapist, and a murderer. Would you not steps to ensure that people who read or might read the biography knew that I was wrong and that you not only never did these things, but disapprove of them in the extreme? If you did not take such steps, then, would it really be wrong of people to assume that you either did do these things or, at the very least, do not have any issue with them?

If the Bible exists - and it does, obviously - we are left with only six possible conclusions:
1. The Bible is an accurate depiction of God and his values.
2. The Bible is inaccurate in its depiction of God and his values but God is unwilling to correct it.
3. The Bible is inaccurate in its depiction of God and his values but God is unable to correct it.
4. The Bible is inaccurate in its depiction of God and his values but God is unaware of this.
6. The Bible is neither inaccurate nor accurate because it is describing an entirely fictional being.

In the first two options we are left with an evil God. In the third and fourth options we are left with a God so radically different in scope from the god of the Bible that we can say with certainty that the Bible is not describing this being at all. And in the last option we are obviously left with a similar conclusion in that whether or not there is a God or gods, the Bible is entirely unconcerned with the possible reality of such beings.

Out of those posters, only a few are truly illogical but enough so that the point is made. And they're freaking hilarious to boot. (The top and bottom right are the strongest arguments for me).

Also your biography analogy is beautiful. I will be using it in the future.

Kodos
03-02-2011, 02:58 PM
People often try and avoid the Problem of Evil by saying that evil is necessary for good, and/or that suffering is necessary for happiness.

This is retarded.

You can experience something without knowing anything about it or its antithesis. I'd agree you need to have the concept of the antithesis of a thing in order to recognize the thing, but the idea that you need to experience both to recognize either is insane. One does not need to experience cancer to conceptualize or recognize the state of not having cancer. One cannot experience non-existence and yet we can recognize and conceptualize it. In order to recognize happiness we do not need to directly experience suffering, we merely need to have a concept of what suffering and/or the absence of happiness might entail.

Fenn
03-03-2011, 03:52 PM
People often try and avoid the Problem of Evil by saying that evil is necessary for good, and/or that suffering is necessary for happiness.

This is retarded.

You can experience something without knowing anything about it or its antithesis. I'd agree you need to have the concept of the antithesis of a thing in order to recognize the thing, but the idea that you need to experience both to recognize either is insane. One does not need to experience cancer to conceptualize or recognize the state of not having cancer. One cannot experience non-existence and yet we can recognize and conceptualize it. In order to recognize happiness we do not need to directly experience suffering, we merely need to have a concept of what suffering and/or the absence of happiness might entail.

Not sure if you're relying to me or just stating. Either way, while it is true no conceptualization can equal a first-hand experience of a status. Someone who has never known evil will not be able to appreciate goodness on the same level as someone who has. Example: someone will savor a drink of water far more after 24 hours in the desert than on a normal day. Experiencing something is one thing. Appreciating and/or understanding that experience is different. I'm not trying to justify suffering, but it is a fact of modern human life.

Also another thought: I wonder how many impoverished people we could feed with the quantity of bread used as Eucharist at Mass every week. Hmm...

Kodos
03-03-2011, 06:07 PM
Let's ask a rape survivor if she would rather have never known rape or if the ability to more fully appreciate the state of not being raped was worth the one time event of being raped. Or ask a cancer survivor if her current state of not-having-cancer was worth the long period of suffering and monetary drain that cancer brought on.

Additionally, the argument Christians make is not "First hand experience heightens understanding" but rather "In order to experience something you must also experience its opposite." That is not true. You can experience, appreciate, and understand what it is to be happy without having ever experienced suffering.

Ozzaharwood
03-04-2011, 09:11 PM
Best quote evar.

"Atheism: A non-prophet organization"

Fenn
03-04-2011, 09:30 PM
Let's ask a rape survivor if she would rather have never known rape or if the ability to more fully appreciate the state of not being raped was worth the one time event of being raped. Or ask a cancer survivor if her current state of not-having-cancer was worth the long period of suffering and monetary drain that cancer brought on.

Additionally, the argument Christians make is not "First hand experience heightens understanding" but rather "In order to experience something you must also experience its opposite." That is not true. You can experience, appreciate, and understand what it is to be happy without having ever experienced suffering.

Completely right on the first part. Yet I never said whether it was "worth it." Of course not. Rape is also irreversible; it never goes away completely, thus it can obviously not be required to appreciate the state of un-rape. I wouldn't recommend cancer to anyone else either, but in fact I do know of cancer survivors who reached a higher appreciation of life after their battle with cancer. Was it worth it? Probably not, but that's really up to that person.

But to your real point (which I finally get now). You are right. Although I can't exactly remember challenging that point? Wait, did I or were you continuing the convo?

Also you didn't reply to my last thought, but there wasn't much to say about it anyway.

Also, as an excuse to use one of these adorable new emotes, I would like to show you just what I look like in front of my computer after replying in this thread:

:cat_teardrop:

PWhit
03-05-2011, 09:44 PM
Those God Posters made me laugh my ass off.

Kodos
03-06-2011, 01:29 AM
The final image in that series raises an important point: Adam and Eve in so many ways exemplify why Christianity is morally bankrupt. In that story we learn numerous things. First of all, we learn that God believes women to be inferior and subservient. Second we find that God expects people to obey rules without understanding why. God literally wants slave morality. He wants Adam and Eve to obey him, but since they cannot conceive of right or wrong, they have literally no reason to obey God beyond fear. Even blind loyalty can't come in, because blind loyalty is still based on a (exceedingly simple) concept of right and wrong. Obviously we learn int he story that God created man explicitly so they could fall, since he is omnipotent and omniscient. We also learn that it is morally righteous to be ashamed of your own body. Lastly we learn that God believes in collective punishment on a scale that boggles the mind. Adam and Eve sinned, and so every single human being who will ever live must be punished.

Try using Christian morals one day. Punish a man's entire family when he breaks a rule that you never explained to him.

Fenn
03-06-2011, 11:42 AM
Mr. Kodos sir, can I just confirm that if you don't reply to one of my comments, it means you agree? I'm used to verbal confirmation is all.

PWhit
03-06-2011, 11:51 AM
@ Kodos, You're absolutely right. It's funny how some people say how the fall in Eden is a "graceful fall" even though there is nothing graceful about it. It's just another piece of proof on how massively manufactured religions only aim for world slavery.

violin
03-07-2011, 09:50 AM
Religion used for world slavery? Banks and all the credit type economics makes slavery. One should be more conserned about the constantly rising external debts and trade deficit of US and EU. In a few decated if this continues with the same rate Asian countries will tell us what to do and how. Don't get me wrong - I admire asian economies. For example Japan is now one of the leading economies mainly because its people have the highest saving rate in all the world. All we do is take credit and live upon future generations money. I'm more concern about that than religion.

Harvester_Of_Sorrow
03-07-2011, 06:30 PM
Religion used for world slavery? Banks and all the credit type economics makes slavery. One should be more conserned about the constantly rising external debts and trade deficit of US and EU. In a few decated if this continues with the same rate Asian countries will tell us what to do and how. Don't get me wrong - I admire asian economies. For example Japan is now one of the leading economies mainly because its people have the highest saving rate in all the world. All we do is take credit and live upon future generations money. I'm more concern about that than religion.

You're right, all religions are fine because world banks make us slaves. What? If you want to make an issue of the trade deficits of the US and the EU, which I totally agree is a worthy issue, then make another thread. This thread is about religious bullshit. You won't get anywhere by saying; 'Religious conformity ain't that bad compared too global banks.' On a larger scale, that could easily be argued to not even be true, but even if it was, that is irrelevant to the issue at hand.

violin
03-07-2011, 08:55 PM
Ok sorry for the offtopic. Here's what I think on the topic:
Main religions are fine and I don't see how they enslave people. If it's not the religion, people would believe in something else. It's just how most humans are. Especialy if there is something they can not understand or can not accept.
I will admit that I am surprised that here in US there are religoin TV channels that air free and talk bullshits all day. I wake up in Sunday and turn on my TV and there is that crazy guy saying that Jesus is talking to him right now - Seriously?! I don't know how you call them but most of those "priests" and "religions" that you have are illegal in Europe. And if something like that goes on TV the channel can lose it's license. But then again there are alot of psychics back home and they were even able to make a School of Magic :confused:. But I guess there are strange people everywhere as long as there is someone to believe them.
But your taking it too seriously. Most religous people don't read the bible and other books word by word. It is for everyone to decide by himself what's wrong etc. And depending on how smart you are you'll probably find different meaning and those stories.
If bible says that "rape is not a big deal". Well it's wrong. It is a big deal. And who believes it's not just because someone told him so is stupid.

I'm waiting for Kodos to split this message into peaces and argue about it:cat_listen:

Kodos
03-07-2011, 11:00 PM
Mr. Kodos sir, can I just confirm that if you don't reply to one of my comments, it means you agree? I'm used to verbal confirmation is all.
That, or I forgot to reply because I was [lazy/tired/forgetful].


Religion used for world slavery? Banks and all the credit type economics makes slavery.
Chattel slavery - such as endorsed by the Bible - predates capitalism. I am a socialist and I hate the free market and what it has done to the world, but this is such a retarded claim as to be comical.


One should be more conserned about the constantly rising external debts and trade deficit of US and EU. In a few decated if this continues with the same rate Asian countries will tell us what to do and how. Don't get me wrong - I admire asian economies. For example Japan is now one of the leading economies mainly because its people have the highest saving rate in all the world. All we do is take credit and live upon future generations money. I'm more concern about that than religion.
"BEEP BOOP I AM A ROBOT. BEEP BOOP MY CARE PROCESSORS CAN ONLY FOCUS ON ONE ISSUE AND ONE ISSUE ALONE. BEEP BOOP."


Ok sorry for the offtopic. Here's what I think on the topic:
Main religions are fine and I don't see how they enslave people.
Yes. I don't see how belief systems that claim blind obedience to authority is one of the highest virtues, and that there are certain behaviors you must or must not do regardless of reason or logic, and which literally endorse slavery, enslave people.


If it's not the religion, people would believe in something else.
I've addressed this before. Religions claim legitimacy in a way secular philosophies do not. Even the most absurd secular philosophies, like Objectivism, still claim to be based on logic and reason and can be argued and debated on such grounds. It forces people to - at least in theory - examine and justify their beliefs and actions. Religion is predicated on the idea that there are certain things - like the existence of God - which are immune to logical justification and are true and do not need to be rationalized, defended, or argued for. One you throw logic out the window no debate is possible.


It's just how most humans are. Especialy if there is something they can not understand or can not accept.
The reason so many people cannot accept or understand science and logic is because their minds have tragically been poisoned by religion. It's like saying "It's useless to try and prevent cancer because people with cancer will die anyway." The alternative you are proposing is a direct result of the thing we are trying to combat.

Fenn
03-09-2011, 05:10 PM
That, or I forgot to reply because I was [lazy/tired/forgetful].

No prob. It just felt like all the points you missed were the best arguments/comments I'd made. But I don't think that's actually true.


The reason so many people cannot accept or understand science and logic is because their minds have tragically been poisoned by religion. It's like saying "It's useless to try and prevent cancer because people with cancer will die anyway." The alternative you are proposing is a direct result of the thing we are trying to combat.

Re: education. I strongly believe that effective education is the most important step in solving almost all the world problems. Not the only step, but the primary one.

I am tolerant of a religion or secular philosophy unless that religion/philosophy endorses harming another individual. Then stuff gets serious.

Delphinus
03-09-2011, 06:07 PM
^ Nearly all religions endorse harming other individuals. The ones that don't are generally smaller than those that do.