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Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:25 PM Apr 2014

If you cannot disprove the existence of God, or prove the existence of God

Being dismissive of others walk in life in futile.. is an exercise in stroking ones own ego.

No point to yelling, no point to calling others names, and accusing them of being delusional.

You or I or the guy or gal typing the next message cannot prove or disprove the existence of God.

It is your own personal belief system

359 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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If you cannot disprove the existence of God, or prove the existence of God (Original Post) Peacetrain Apr 2014 OP
While I agree with you, I think you are missing the point to the Religion Forum nt el_bryanto Apr 2014 #1
Nope, just stating my belief system.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #2
Exactly what do you see as the point of the religion forum, el bryanto? cbayer Apr 2014 #5
Bottom line is, people are going to talk about what they want to talk about. trotsky Apr 2014 #6
It depends on who you are el_bryanto Apr 2014 #33
Sure, some people most definitely want that chance. cbayer Apr 2014 #40
It's harmful phil89 Apr 2014 #77
OTOH, there may be both plusses and minuses to being cbayer Apr 2014 #79
"Perhaps is it your goal to "save" people?" phil89 Apr 2014 #93
Hmm, that whole saving thing sounds so familiar. cbayer Apr 2014 #94
So maybe atheism is ironically the latest and truest expression of God; would that be bad? Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #141
Of all the inane things I have read in this group, this is possibly the most inane ever. cbayer Apr 2014 #148
Or more politely, "paradoxical" or "ironic"? Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #149
We should post a poll of them all and let the Group decide. rug Apr 2014 #158
That could be really entertaining, but this particular one really takes the cake, imo. cbayer Apr 2014 #161
Here's one rational explanation Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #182
And ye shall be saved!!! cbayer Apr 2014 #184
I'm on a mission from god. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #200
it is so tough for us mundane people to meet your very lofty standards. Warren Stupidity May 2014 #297
Looks like that post went over your head. trotsky Apr 2014 #83
K & big R to you Peacetrain. cbayer Apr 2014 #3
cbayer, I have no way of proving God exists.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #21
I never engage in the existence of god debate. cbayer Apr 2014 #48
Ah, cunning deployment of Luke Russert's Equivalency Theorem... Act_of_Reparation Apr 2014 #4
I just cited this post to a Libertarian friend. immoderate Apr 2014 #80
I'm not trying to disprove god Goblinmonger Apr 2014 #7
Would never ask you too.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #16
Seemed like you were making those the options Goblinmonger Apr 2014 #24
Nope Gobllinmonger.. not at all Peacetrain Apr 2014 #31
Did someone here say they were trying to, or could disprove the existence of one or many gods? AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #8
Why yes, it was the dreaded.... trotsky Apr 2014 #11
Damn that guy. He's so quick, you can't even see his posts zip in and out of the thread. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #15
If you cannot disprove the existence of Sarah Palin's god, or prove the existence of yours... trotsky Apr 2014 #9
Are you now, or have you ever been, a witch? AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #10
I cannot prove or disprove that accusation. n/t trotsky Apr 2014 #13
Which is an excellent reason to keep her the hell away from political power. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #18
Palin can believe she wants to.. but her beliefs stop at the end of her nose Peacetrain Apr 2014 #12
Quit telling others what they can or cannot do. trotsky Apr 2014 #14
ahhhh must have hit a nerve... Peacetrain Apr 2014 #17
Yes, it appears I did! trotsky Apr 2014 #19
trotsky it really is okay Peacetrain Apr 2014 #23
If religion was, as you seem to think, just "beliefs that stop at your nose" Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #32
That is more than okay with me to point that out.. I am not saying Peacetrain Apr 2014 #39
You do understand that... TreasonousBastard Apr 2014 #55
Like when for example the RCC acts to promote laws that discriminate against LGBTQ people? Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #60
Did I say it never happens? Of course... TreasonousBastard Apr 2014 #63
Did I say that's all there is? No, but you are acting like that is what I said. Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #67
Well, that brings up the question of just what do we... TreasonousBastard Apr 2014 #71
Stand up and clearly voice opposition to what is wrong would be a start. Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #75
So totally agree, Peacetrain. trotsky Apr 2014 #50
Interesting.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #59
Again, totally agreed. trotsky Apr 2014 #64
Its okay.. it really is Peacetrain Apr 2014 #66
Agreed once more. trotsky Apr 2014 #74
trotsky,I don't think I said Peacetrain Apr 2014 #97
You're trying very hard to have it both ways. trotsky Apr 2014 #114
No trotsky.. you read what you read into something Peacetrain Apr 2014 #133
Well, the important thing is you've found a way to feel superior. trotsky Apr 2014 #142
No, she's simply calling you on mistating her position. rug Apr 2014 #159
Ah, but WHOSE nerve is the question... AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #20
Its okay.. I never ask people to prove their belief system Peacetrain Apr 2014 #22
All I know about Sara Palin's religion is that I don't want to be baptized into it. (nt) stone space May 2014 #275
Yelling nil desperandum Apr 2014 #25
No one has the right to cause harm to others with their Peacetrain Apr 2014 #27
Is using ones personal belief system as the basis for legislation and policy harmful? cleanhippie Apr 2014 #30
absolutely can be sometimes.. many times..most of the time Peacetrain Apr 2014 #35
Then you do see the problem of false equivalency in your OP's assertion? cleanhippie Apr 2014 #37
nope none at all.. no one can prove or disprove.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #42
Who is trying to disprove anything? cleanhippie Apr 2014 #54
Ahh CH... Declarative statement Peacetrain Apr 2014 #56
I really have no idea what your point is. cleanhippie Apr 2014 #85
Interesting. trotsky Apr 2014 #53
they can believe what ever they want.. and live it as they choose Peacetrain Apr 2014 #57
Again, they could argue the same thing. trotsky Apr 2014 #58
Of course they can.. they have a right to believe that.. and live it Peacetrain Apr 2014 #61
So now we come to making laws. trotsky Apr 2014 #73
If the existence of God cannot be proven or disproven... gcomeau Apr 2014 #26
If the existence of other life outside our planet cannot be proven or disproven... cbayer Apr 2014 #28
You aren't understanding the concept of falsifiability. gcomeau Apr 2014 #34
I can't be expected to understand it, being dumb and all. cbayer Apr 2014 #41
I neither said nor implied anything of the kind. gcomeau Apr 2014 #44
No, but you were very condescending. cbayer Apr 2014 #46
I'm fascinated... gcomeau Apr 2014 #47
Ah, more condescension. How's that working for you? cbayer Apr 2014 #49
About as well as your mind reading powers are working for you I'd say. gcomeau Apr 2014 #51
The internet is only as hostile as those who populate it. cbayer Apr 2014 #52
That would appear to be... gcomeau Apr 2014 #65
It certainly could be and the lack of other cues in internet communication cbayer Apr 2014 #69
You mean... gcomeau Apr 2014 #78
Perhaps, or a mere "I am sorry that came across as condescending cbayer Apr 2014 #81
IOW, you require an apology no matter what the other person says. cleanhippie Apr 2014 #165
You also failed to genuflect. n/t trotsky Apr 2014 #88
:-D -eom gcomeau Apr 2014 #92
Having been caught in her own gotcha, the victim mode gambit is now in play. Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #62
Ha! trotsky Apr 2014 #95
the question of the existence of life on other planets can be stated as a falsifiable theory Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #38
So how would one disprove the existence of ET life? DanTex Apr 2014 #129
You don't, you falsify the theory that there is no life outside of our planet. Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #130
So that means that only one of the two theories is falsifiable, right? DanTex Apr 2014 #131
This is why the requirement of "falsifiability" is silly and misguided skepticscott Apr 2014 #132
I agree with you, to an extent. DanTex Apr 2014 #134
It is the negative. Note you could try Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #144
Well, hypothetically, I don't see why there couldn't be "evidence of god". DanTex Apr 2014 #153
Really? How would disappeared people be evidence of god? Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #175
You got me thinking there Warren Starboard Tack May 2014 #299
It doesn't matter Peacetrain Apr 2014 #29
Ummm... gcomeau Apr 2014 #36
No you are right about that.. if someone is dismissive or you Peacetrain Apr 2014 #43
Well this was a fun thread.. and I am off to lunch.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #45
What are you defining as god? elias7 Apr 2014 #68
we all have a plan we live our lives by Peacetrain Apr 2014 #70
So what do you mean by deity? elias7 Apr 2014 #89
:) Peacetrain Apr 2014 #96
Well, this morning when I got to work, my SQL server was down, so AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #154
But isn't that exactly the point he is making? cbayer Apr 2014 #72
It is easy to disprove many specific ideas of God. Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #84
Oh, please. That's just simplistic hogwash. cbayer Apr 2014 #87
Hey? Isn't calling atheist ideas "simplistic hogwash" hurtful? Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #139
Hey! That's not an "atheist idea". That's just your idea. cbayer Apr 2014 #147
SOME atheists do not say there is no God; they perhaps merely are disinterested in one Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #151
There is no right, elias7 Apr 2014 #90
Agree. There probably is an answer, but we will never know it. cbayer Apr 2014 #91
We could know. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #156
Someone posted something here the other day that I found very intriguing. cbayer Apr 2014 #160
Many (I would risk saying 'most') caricatures of gods demand some form of allegiance or faith. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #166
Well, that's what the faith part is all about, isn't it. cbayer Apr 2014 #167
Well, I am mostly speaking to the abrahamic traditions. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #170
I believe that you are incapable of faith. cbayer Apr 2014 #172
Totally agree. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #174
Meh, I don't think the bible should ever be taken literally and reject cbayer Apr 2014 #176
Becasue I want to know if it exists. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #177
But you will never know, imo. cbayer Apr 2014 #178
Certain religions make very precise claims about the nature of the universe. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #179
Why are you so intent on causing the collapse of religion? cbayer Apr 2014 #180
Because their faith doesn't stay with them. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #181
Well certainly you are well within your rights to object to anyone cbayer Apr 2014 #183
I don't think there's any equivalency there at all. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #186
The religious right is losing ground, imo. edited to avoid starting another subthread. cbayer Apr 2014 #189
Oh no. Much longer ago than that. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #190
Ok, I think we are talking about two different waves. cbayer Apr 2014 #192
Do you really consider an equivalence between passing a law based on a religious tenet, and me AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #188
But if God exists, and wanted us to believe in him? Just showing himself would do it. Brettongarcia May 2014 #203
If there IS a supernatural god AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #155
I don't necessarily know if that's true. cbayer Apr 2014 #157
Said being could make it clear to us that it has many forms. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #164
Why might it even bother. You may be no more than an ant in an ant pile. cbayer Apr 2014 #168
Most of those claims of evidence/messengers occured long before I was born. AtheistCrusader Apr 2014 #171
I whole heartedly disagree with the premise Peregrine Apr 2014 #76
Yes this edhopper Apr 2014 #86
Ahem gcomeau Apr 2014 #126
But their vague God is demonstrably not the Biblical one. Who constantly demands "proof"s of himself Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #143
There is *always* an excuse. gcomeau Apr 2014 #146
Then God says "Put me to the test" in Mal. 3.10; "test everything" (1 THess. 5.21?) Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #152
Uh huh. gcomeau Apr 2014 #162
But 1) there is much in God that seems clearly outlined; things not so "mysterious" Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #185
Well sure, there are hundreds of things gcomeau Apr 2014 #187
Pointing that out to them, just the way you have done here, is one very useful thing to do. Brettongarcia Apr 2014 #191
One thing you can do is to realize that objective proof of God existence or non-existence ladjf Apr 2014 #82
Seems we CAN prove the non-existence of God. In "What if God's Existence Were Proven," recentDU post Brettongarcia May 2014 #307
Answer two questions - demwing Apr 2014 #98
I for one will be really interested in watching this thread Peacetrain Apr 2014 #99
A hiccup? demwing Apr 2014 #100
That is assuming that consciousness edhopper Apr 2014 #101
tests for self awareness in non humans have been passed by a surprising variety of animals. Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #104
Excellent. demwing Apr 2014 #106
what deity is required? Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #109
That's true, and has nothing to do with my post demwing Apr 2014 #112
ok, then your post is gibberish. Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #123
Did that make you feel better? demwing Apr 2014 #128
Perhaps it's an unfair question demwing Apr 2014 #105
We don't have a complete answer edhopper Apr 2014 #110
You're right, that's a God of the Gaps argument demwing Apr 2014 #111
Okay edhopper Apr 2014 #116
"And if you don't see the relevance of the questions, feel 100% free to not answer them " merrily Apr 2014 #140
awareness of the body is not self awareness Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #124
Well, that depends on who is writing the definition demwing Apr 2014 #196
I think the source of life on this planet can be satisfactorily explained by evolution. cbayer Apr 2014 #102
Well that is a common misconception. Evolution does not provide an explanation for the origin Warren Stupidity Apr 2014 #107
I don't think evolution explains the source of life at all demwing Apr 2014 #108
Your question is very interesting to me. cbayer Apr 2014 #113
Have you seen this video? demwing Apr 2014 #115
I can't currently watch videos. cbayer Apr 2014 #118
Sorry - here's a quick breakdown demwing Apr 2014 #121
Sounds very cool and I will put it aside to watch later. cbayer Apr 2014 #145
"I've also had times when I wished I was more mediocre" trotsky Apr 2014 #122
Oh, Trots, you have no idea the BURDEN of PERFECTION Heddi Apr 2014 #193
It's tough being you. Goblinmonger Apr 2014 #194
Ah, the argument from personal incredulity. trotsky Apr 2014 #117
Ok, time for me to do some school work demwing Apr 2014 #119
When we talk about the source of life, we have to limit the talk to the life that we know ... Jim__ Apr 2014 #136
These are great answers, Jim_ demwing Apr 2014 #197
I though you were going to edhopper Apr 2014 #198
What I wrote in post 119: demwing May 2014 #202
Oh edhopper May 2014 #224
The only thing I would disagree with is that I don't know that there is any inevitability about ... Jim__ Apr 2014 #199
Improbability demwing May 2014 #268
Sorry to hear that you are having health problems. I hope everything is alright now. Jim__ May 2014 #270
No need for an eternal past demwing May 2014 #273
OK. I don't believe we have established that life is inevitable. Jim__ May 2014 #293
I'm not sure we need to demwing May 2014 #305
Given that we are not sure of the path taken to the origin of life on earth ... Jim__ May 2014 #309
when a personis dismissive Niceguy1 Apr 2014 #103
+1 rug Apr 2014 #120
I might make an attempt to challenge and/or educate them as to why this constitutes cbayer Apr 2014 #150
First come up with a definition of "God" that we can all agree upon... Flying Squirrel Apr 2014 #125
Well FS that is impossible.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #137
Anyone can tailor the definition of God to fit the outcome they want. Kablooie May 2014 #328
The fact that no one has proven anything either way does not weigh evenly on both sides. merrily Apr 2014 #127
I guess you are talking to me.. Peacetrain Apr 2014 #135
I responded with my general thoughts on the OP, but I was not merrily Apr 2014 #138
Actually, this is not true. I prove so-called "negatives" all the time. stone space May 2014 #271
There is not a full-sized elephant in my pocket. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #272
People prove negatives all the time. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #274
How much is A-2A? edhopper May 2014 #278
Wicked Awesome.... RedRoses323 Apr 2014 #163
I dsimiss your premise. Iggo Apr 2014 #169
Do you mean by that that you think you can prove or disprove god? cbayer Apr 2014 #173
"Act of Reparation?" notes that if you can't prove God ... then believers are wrong too. Brettongarcia May 2014 #204
Er, yeah. That's the whole point of the OP, imo. cbayer May 2014 #210
Now worded a little more unequivocally though: firm believers in God are simply wrong Brettongarcia May 2014 #215
Firm disbelievers are equally wrong. cbayer May 2014 #218
But 1) many people here object to the premise: that God cannot be proved, or disproved. Brettongarcia May 2014 #237
Atheism doesn't claim there is no god phil89 May 2014 #352
You also cannot disprove the existence of god in the form of a monkey, or in the form of a pig, or DrewFlorida Apr 2014 #195
Interesting..ahhh.. Peacetrain May 2014 #206
How in the hell did such a blindingly obvious logical fallacy get to 200 posts? AtheistCrusader May 2014 #201
Maybe it has appeal based on what people would like to believe el_bryanto May 2014 #205
Do we ignore each other? Peacetrain May 2014 #208
You have to look at it from an Atheist point of view - or the point of view of some Atheists el_bryanto May 2014 #209
I see what you are saying. Peacetrain May 2014 #212
Disagreeing with, or arguing with someone, even sans decorum, is not *force*. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #217
No one is saying do not argue, or press your point if different Peacetrain May 2014 #222
That's because it is not intellectually honest to weight proving and disproving god the same. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #223
AC you keep missing my point.. you want to Peacetrain May 2014 #227
You bring up a really important point that I have been mulling over the last 2 days. cbayer May 2014 #228
There is no 'atheist tribe'. If there is, I am not aware of it, and did not recieve my invitation. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #230
Duck!! cbayer May 2014 #235
Without a tribe to identify with, your point is meaningless. Try again. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #236
We must have been on the same wave length today Peacetrain May 2014 #232
That's a nice thought, because I hold you in high regard, cbayer May 2014 #233
cbayer, have you ever read Vonneguts Cats Cradle. Peacetrain May 2014 #238
I read it long, long ago and may need to read it again. cbayer May 2014 #239
Its been a very long time for me also since I read his works Peacetrain May 2014 #241
Fear of the other - that's exactly it. cbayer May 2014 #243
My guess is cbayer that is where hazing has its beginnings Peacetrain May 2014 #245
Some of that is hazing and some of it is more like a loyalty oath. cbayer May 2014 #249
A lot of it is loyalty oath Peacetrain May 2014 #251
Ah, some of my Canadian friends tell great stories about "Newfies". cbayer May 2014 #261
Keep your fingers crossed! Peacetrain May 2014 #263
I will, and I wish you many travels in your future cbayer May 2014 #265
I guess I need to get going Peacetrain May 2014 #266
I don't need to disprove god. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #229
I do not have to prove anything Peacetrain May 2014 #231
Hey, welcome to the club. I see you are an athiest too! AtheistCrusader May 2014 #234
You have a tendency to broad brush the religious communities.. Peacetrain May 2014 #240
You are wrong on so many counts. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #244
laws being passed good and bad have nothing to do with Peacetrain May 2014 #246
Yeah, keep your fingers in your ears and chanting NANANANANAAA I CAN'T HEAR YOU. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #248
I have never said anything, but everyone has a right to believe as they choose Peacetrain May 2014 #252
So we have no argument then. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #253
I can't help you.. I am not Catholic Peacetrain May 2014 #256
Did I say you are catholic? AtheistCrusader May 2014 #258
Those aren't atheists. Those are anti-theists. cbayer May 2014 #213
No. No. No. And I can tolerate *you*. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #216
Interesting, I missed this posts Peacetrain May 2014 #254
Boy, you just 'read' shit that other people don't say all the time don't you? AtheistCrusader May 2014 #257
Maybe we are posting at cross purposes... Peacetrain May 2014 #260
A misunderstanding would explain a great many things. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #262
I think it is the nature of discussion boards Peacetrain May 2014 #264
Broaching the subject with people who by and large, base their worldview in reason, with a logical f AtheistCrusader May 2014 #214
How would you suggest it be phrased then - to communicate that idea without el_bryanto May 2014 #221
Maybe it is something that interests people Peacetrain May 2014 #207
What do you find wrong with it? cbayer May 2014 #211
Wrapped in a logical fallacy. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #219
I edited my response to you here. cbayer May 2014 #220
Do N-Rays exist? edhopper May 2014 #225
They are different things Ed Peacetrain May 2014 #242
Special pleading... Act_of_Reparation May 2014 #247
That is my point Peacetrain May 2014 #250
?! AtheistCrusader May 2014 #259
O_O Act_of_Reparation May 2014 #267
Well belief in god is easily proven edhopper May 2014 #269
Once again here we go Peacetrain May 2014 #289
I understand you point about belief edhopper May 2014 #290
Ed show me where I ever said that.. Peacetrain May 2014 #292
I thought that was what you meant by edhopper May 2014 #295
Have a good one Ed Peacetrain May 2014 #296
I love Rhubarb edhopper May 2014 #298
Me, too! stone space May 2014 #314
Religious beliefs have content. enki23 May 2014 #226
The religious privilege in this thread is rife and unchecked Lordquinton May 2014 #255
I know very few Theists who claim to have a proof of the existence of God. stone space May 2014 #294
Really? Because there are several Theists on this board Lordquinton May 2014 #300
Claiming to know God is not an offer of proof. Hell, my wife might qualify for that, but she's... stone space May 2014 #301
Claiming there is a god means you have some sort of reason to Lordquinton May 2014 #303
Where do you get this from? I keep seeing people say things like this. stone space May 2014 #304
Your reasoning is terribly faulty. trotsky May 2014 #308
You are expecting theists to prove existence. stone space May 2014 #310
Do I need to disprove Zeus to not believe in him? trotsky May 2014 #311
No you don't. stone space May 2014 #312
Yeah, something's silly here alright. trotsky May 2014 #313
It is one sided Lordquinton May 2014 #317
I prove negatives all the time. stone space May 2014 #318
lrn2science Lordquinton May 2014 #319
Of course you can. I do it all the time. stone space May 2014 #320
Mathematically? Lordquinton May 2014 #321
Mathematically. I'm pretty sure that we didn't agree that it couldn't be done. stone space May 2014 #322
Several Lordquinton May 2014 #324
Links make more sense than your paraphrasings. stone space May 2014 #325
Want links? Lordquinton May 2014 #327
I don't recall posting anything about any Nobel prize. stone space May 2014 #330
It was a joke Lordquinton May 2014 #336
Usually what people seem to mean by a "negative" is a universally quantified statement. stone space May 2014 #338
We're using the same words Lordquinton May 2014 #341
I claimed that God doesn't exist, but I didn't claim that I had a proof that God doesn't exist. stone space May 2014 #345
I think this is where your argument falls apart. cbayer May 2014 #306
No, it doesn't put them on the same footing Lordquinton May 2014 #316
This whole argument about who has to prove or disprove cbayer May 2014 #333
The whole argument has been framed in favor of the religionists Lordquinton May 2014 #334
You behave as if there is a war going on here. cbayer May 2014 #337
I'm saying your arguments lead to that line of thinking Lordquinton May 2014 #340
You are right. "We" do those things. cbayer May 2014 #343
Just recently someone here posted that Lordquinton May 2014 #358
Link please. cbayer May 2014 #359
No, but the argument goes something like this: Turbineguy May 2014 #276
Unfortunately edhopper May 2014 #277
See, you just said "most" then brought up fundies and the taliban as your examples. cbayer May 2014 #280
True edhopper May 2014 #281
I know that you were mostly making an argument about Pascal's wager, cbayer May 2014 #283
Evangelicals in the US are fundamentalists in a sense. AtheistCrusader May 2014 #288
But they do live their lives as if God existed edhopper May 2014 #291
Thanks for the education! Turbineguy May 2014 #284
Well, edhopper May 2014 #285
Or just live like it doesn't matter. cbayer May 2014 #279
That is the best way to edhopper May 2014 #282
Some people live thier lives believing that god exists and has precepts they must accept, and impose AtheistCrusader May 2014 #287
Live and let live, sure. Oakenshield May 2014 #286
K&R. darkangel218 May 2014 #302
Since no one else seems to have asked skepticscott May 2014 #315
I have a pretty good idea of what it means to prove something. That's probably why I seldom... stone space May 2014 #323
Don't youmean maybe you don't jump to claim things you can't prove? Lordquinton May 2014 #326
No, what I mean is that I try very hard not to claim to be able to prove things that... stone space May 2014 #331
SO when someone makes a claim Lordquinton May 2014 #335
That's fine, but you're doing it while naked. stone space May 2014 #339
Um, what? Lordquinton May 2014 #342
This was really intended for the OP skepticscott May 2014 #329
Actually, if I understand your question correctly, you should probably take it as a "yes" from me. stone space May 2014 #332
No, since you failed to show skepticscott May 2014 #344
I don't think that you understand what mathematicians do for a living. (nt) stone space May 2014 #346
In fact, I do skepticscott May 2014 #347
Feel free to show me what a proof of the existence of God or the non-existence of God looks like. stone space May 2014 #348
As noted, and now confirmed, you have no clue what you even mean by "proof" skepticscott May 2014 #349
When all else fails, question motives. stone space May 2014 #350
Yes, when all else fails to get a straight, non-passive aggressive answer skepticscott May 2014 #355
You chould try email. It works better for private conversations that posting in a public forum. stone space May 2014 #356
I promised not to post in this forum again, but one last time randys1 May 2014 #351
True. People focus a lot on the western religions phil89 May 2014 #354
And nobody should belittle you for that. stone space May 2014 #357
Also, nobody can prove or disprove that a giant moon mindwalker_i May 2014 #353

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
5. Exactly what do you see as the point of the religion forum, el bryanto?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:34 PM
Apr 2014

I see it as an opportunity to discuss how religion intersects with politics, to promote religious and non-religious organizations who are fighting for the goals that we as progressives/liberals share, to spotlight the idiocy or the religious right in an attempt to defang it and to build coalitions between groups of people who may hold very different views about religion but have much more in common than they do differences.

But flame bait and really divisive OP's do tend to get the most traffic, so maybe I am completely off the mark on this.

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
6. Bottom line is, people are going to talk about what they want to talk about.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:36 PM
Apr 2014

And you don't get to control them.

el_bryanto

(11,804 posts)
33. It depends on who you are
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:11 PM
Apr 2014

Different people want different things; but certainly more than a few want the chance to smack down people who think/believe differently than they do because they believe that those beliefs are hurting the nation or the Democratic Party.

Bryant

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
40. Sure, some people most definitely want that chance.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:20 PM
Apr 2014

But they are way off the mark, imo, because they never make the case that religious beliefs held by progressive/liberal people of faith are hurting the party.

Of, if they have, I haven't seen it.

So, why would we say the religion group should serve that purpose.

It's trolling, divisive and harms the causes that this site is set up to pursue, imo.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
79. OTOH, there may be both plusses and minuses to being
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:19 PM
Apr 2014

part of a certain institution.

Each individual has to make up their own mind about where the scale tips and whether they would rather fight for and against the things they believe in from the outside or the inside.

Perhaps is it your goal to "save" people?

 

phil89

(1,043 posts)
93. "Perhaps is it your goal to "save" people?"
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 05:28 PM
Apr 2014

If I can reduce the harm done by religion, I'm all for it.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
141. So maybe atheism is ironically the latest and truest expression of God; would that be bad?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:52 AM
Apr 2014

Many suggested that Karl Marx was a great Jewish prophet.



Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
182. Here's one rational explanation
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:43 PM
Apr 2014

If - as the Bible often warned - there are many false things in religion, even what is called Christianity? Then atheists who criticize many elements of religion, are doing all of us - even believers - a partial favor. Since many "believers" may believing the false things, after all.

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
83. Looks like that post went over your head.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:32 PM
Apr 2014

You've never shown that statements by atheists on this message board are hurting the party, either.

But that hasn't stopped you from claiming it, or accusing vocal atheists of "carrying water for Republicans."

Why such a different standard for others, cbayer?

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
3. K & big R to you Peacetrain.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:31 PM
Apr 2014

Those that insist on attacking whole swaths of people based on their religious beliefs or lack of beliefs are no friends to the democratic party and the goals we share.

We are a big tent, and while we may see the world very, very differently, there is no point in alienating whole groups of people just because you don't share their perspective.

Particularly when it comes to something for which there is, and probably never will be, an answer.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
21. cbayer, I have no way of proving God exists..
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:45 PM
Apr 2014

cannot even begin.. futile.. yet we can all work together for the betterment of the community as a whole.. we do not have to insult each other.. that is all I am saying.. my belief system ends at the tip of my nose..

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
48. I never engage in the existence of god debate.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:35 PM
Apr 2014

I don't know and I don't care and it wouldn't change anything for me anyway.

However, I do think there is something much more evolved than us somewhere. God? Who knows.

I do, otoh, advocate for people who believe and those that don't as long as they are not using that to attack or infringe on the rights of others.

Working together for the betterment of our community and our world is a goal we should all share. If someone's reasons for doing this are religiously motivated, more power to them.

What I hate to see is progressive/liberal democrats being attacked and alienated because of what they believe or don't believe.

That serves a purpose, but it's not our purpose.

Act_of_Reparation

(9,116 posts)
4. Ah, cunning deployment of Luke Russert's Equivalency Theorem...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:32 PM
Apr 2014

Last edited Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:05 AM - Edit history (1)

No matter the severity of what is done or said, just close your eyes and repeat to yourself: BOTH SIDES DO IT.

 

immoderate

(20,885 posts)
80. I just cited this post to a Libertarian friend.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:23 PM
Apr 2014

I sent him a link to reports of Tea Party PACs absconding with millions. And then his reply equated fraud with politics, and contained a reference to ACORN.

I referred him to you.

--imm

 

Goblinmonger

(22,340 posts)
7. I'm not trying to disprove god
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:36 PM
Apr 2014

That is a small subset of atheists.

Those that make extraordinary claims must provide the proof. Asking for said proof is not trying to disprove the extraordinary claim.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
16. Would never ask you too..
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:42 PM
Apr 2014

Because you can't.. and I cannot prove the existence of God.. no way I can do it..

 

Goblinmonger

(22,340 posts)
24. Seemed like you were making those the options
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:53 PM
Apr 2014

Just wanted to make it clear that most non-believers are not trying to do that.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
31. Nope Gobllinmonger.. not at all
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:07 PM
Apr 2014

all I am saying it that it can't be done.. and that does not in any way shape or form diminish anothers' belief system.. non believers in a deity does not mean that their belief system in how to live their lives is less than or non existent.. those who believe in a deity also are not less than others.. at some point we respect each other.. and realize that we all come to this for a variety of reasons.. and then hopefully move forward..

This is a finite life we are all trying to navigate through..

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
9. If you cannot disprove the existence of Sarah Palin's god, or prove the existence of yours...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:38 PM
Apr 2014

Being dismissive of Sarah Palin's walk in life is futile. An exercise in stroking your own ego.

No point to yelling, calling her names, or accusing her of being delusional.

Neither you nor I nor the guy or gal typing the next message can prove or disprove the existence of Sarah Palin's god.

It's just her own personal belief system.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
18. Which is an excellent reason to keep her the hell away from political power.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:43 PM
Apr 2014

Imagine a McCarthy-ist witch hunt, LITERAL witch hunt, on the congressional floor.

It's not so fantastical as we might hope.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
12. Palin can believe she wants to.. but her beliefs stop at the end of her nose
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:40 PM
Apr 2014

just as mine do, and yours.. I don't care what you believe.. you just do not have a right to push your belief system down my throat.. kapish

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
14. Quit telling others what they can or cannot do.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:41 PM
Apr 2014

You have no right to push your belief system down our throats.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
23. trotsky it really is okay
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:51 PM
Apr 2014

its okay.. to be different in how we live our lives personally, as long as we do not impinge on others or cause harm .. you have the right to be who you are without someone demanding proof of value of how you believe..likewise I have that same right.. its okay

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
32. If religion was, as you seem to think, just "beliefs that stop at your nose"
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:07 PM
Apr 2014

then religion wouldn't be a problem. Unfortunately for your "live and let live" warm and fuzzy philosophy, religion, especially religious institutions, are messing way beyond their individual noses all over the place. And they are doing so in ways many of us find quite objectionable. Until religion stops doing that, until religion retreats into pure navel gazing, it is entirely appropriate to examine how religion affects society, and if on balance religion is a negative force, we should oppose religion as it currently exists.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
39. That is more than okay with me to point that out.. I am not saying
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:18 PM
Apr 2014

that we cannot have discussions and realizations that people use facts to try and prove their point of view.. and roll over others.. and that road goes both ways Warren.. I think sometimes, we all (see I put we all) want to be right.. we have reasons for our belief systems.. it works for us on a daily basis.. but if someone feels they must demean another to make their own life system work for them.. that is a problem.. can't force that on others.. not right

TreasonousBastard

(43,049 posts)
55. You do understand that...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:18 PM
Apr 2014

often as not, or at least often enough, religion is not the inciter of bad behavior, but the excuse for it.

If I hate gambling, or prostitution, or 7-11 selling beer, and I can't get a law passed with logic and justice, I'll use what I can-- and that is often religion.

We do this all the time, invoking racism, classism, and every other -ism imaginable to fan the fires and get our way. It's just what people do, and demonizing religion as the worst offender just isn't right.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
60. Like when for example the RCC acts to promote laws that discriminate against LGBTQ people?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:38 PM
Apr 2014

Or when the LDS acted as the major backer of prop-hate in CA?

No, I'm sorry, major religions incorporate hate as part of their creed, instruct their followers to hate, and act to enforce their hate through influence in government. That is not "using religion as an excuse", that is religious thoughts and beliefs being acted on by religious institutions through their leaders and their followers.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
67. Did I say that's all there is? No, but you are acting like that is what I said.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:42 PM
Apr 2014

So we agree that religious institutions are a major negative force in society and that we should not, as the op suggests, just live and let live, right?

TreasonousBastard

(43,049 posts)
71. Well, that brings up the question of just what do we...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:47 PM
Apr 2014

do about this?

Eliminate the Catholic Church? Sounds like a huge project doomed to failure, and even if we did we have to somehow replace all those schools and charities.

All of our institutions have the capability of good and evil, (oops! there's that definition thing again-- just whose good and evil are we talking about...) guiding them down what we agree to be a proper path would be a goal. Not the only one, but one.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
75. Stand up and clearly voice opposition to what is wrong would be a start.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:00 PM
Apr 2014

From my perspective part of the problem, the deeper part, is that indoctrinating people to believe in "revealed wisdom", aka nonsense, is in itself damaging to society, and I agree there is not much I can do about that other than speak up about why it is wrong and the harm that it does.

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
50. So totally agree, Peacetrain.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:42 PM
Apr 2014

It's fine that your personal beliefs make you think you can tell others how to act. I still accept you and validate your right to have that opinion.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
59. Interesting..
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:38 PM
Apr 2014

I think you are trying to make a point about me telling you what to do? But it seems to me you are instructing me on how to act. But its okay..no one is trying to change you.. if you have issues with me believing that.. fine..its your right to feel that way..

My original op.. I stand by it..


"Being dismissive of others walk in life in futile.. is an exercise in stroking ones own ego.

No point to yelling, no point to calling others names, and accusing them of being delusional.

You or I or the guy or gal typing the next message cannot prove or disprove the existence of God.

It is your own personal belief system"

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
64. Again, totally agreed.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:40 PM
Apr 2014

I'm not trying to change you; if it is part of your belief system that you must lecture others and tell them how to behave, that is your choice to make. It's your right to feel that way!

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
74. Agreed once more.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:59 PM
Apr 2014

It's OK, Peacetrain. There are lots of tricky questions out there that don't have answers in the "everyone's beliefs are valid" universe - but we still need to answer them if we are to live together in a society with rules and laws.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
97. trotsky,I don't think I said
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:25 PM
Apr 2014

everyone's beliefs are valid.. that is not my universe.. but I did say.. everyone has a right to their beliefs to the end of their noses.. there it stops.. including mine..including yours.. no one has a right to impose their beliefs on another.. It just does not work.

You or I or anyone cannot prove or disprove how a person feels about the existence of God or not. It cannot be proved or disproved.. and that is okay with me..

Nothing tricky..just a place to start from.. demeaning other peoples beliefs never gets a person anywhere.. except dealing with a very defensive individual

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
114. You're trying very hard to have it both ways.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:39 PM
Apr 2014

You want everyone equally entitled to their beliefs but at the same time, you're imposing your belief that no one's beliefs can go past the end of their noses.

The right-wing anti-choicer would take your dogmatic statement and agree: your beliefs cannot be imposed on someone else. Therefore, abortion should be illegal since the beliefs of a pro-choice mother would be imposed on her fetus.

Again, things get tricky when we have to deal with real people here in the real world. Not so easy to get up on your soapbox and chide everyone else, is it?

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
133. No trotsky.. you read what you read into something
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:56 AM
Apr 2014

I can't restate it any other way, because that is not what you want to hear. You have a set frame of mind.. and that is yours not mine.. can't help you.. feel a little sorry for you, but you don't need my pity I am sure. You want to berate and chide me for saying everyone has a right to their belief but not a right to impose it on others.. that is something you have to deal with. I am off today, so don't be surprised if I do not answer right away.. My Mom is have some same day surgery..

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
142. Well, the important thing is you've found a way to feel superior.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:00 AM
Apr 2014

I'm sorry that you don't want to discuss how your philosophy falls apart in the real world - which is what I was precisely doing, but at least you can sleep well knowing you're better than me.

Take care.

nil desperandum

(654 posts)
25. Yelling
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:53 PM
Apr 2014

While there is no point in yelling or name calling I would ask under what conditions will people accept the existence of a life-form for which they can not supply compelling evidence of existence.

The evidence that man is nothing more than the apex predator of earth is very compelling. Man routinely kills for resources, for food, and for pleasure. These actions bear a striking similarity to every other predatory life form on the planet.

Man in his arrogance assumes he is so important he must invent a reason for his existence other than accidental chemistry, as man firmly believes in his own superiority. Thus man invents a god, a god with the ability to create the universe from nothing.

This god then decides in his infinite godly wisdom that the ultimate life form worthy of his creation is a murderous, disgusting beast known as man. A filthy, exploitative, selfish animal with no species wide redeeming quality other than the ability to create tools to protect its' offspring while it murders the offspring of others and eliminates thousands of sub species planet wide on a regular basis. An animal more like a plague that lays waste to all than a noble creation visiting godly wisdom upon the planet.

When viewing humanity on a world wide scale there is zero evidence that man is anything more than a successful predatory life form that inflicts ruination upon the planet at every chance. Hardly the stuff of a godly creationism...

But that's just me, and I am obviously not in the majority who feel that god created us so he can help us enjoy sporting events by allowing his better genetic creations to score points for those who pray for wins...

If religious code helps people in their attempt to be a less disgusting species that might be a benefit, but if religious code lets you strap on a bomb to kill your neighbors who have a different god or shoot a doctor in the head for performing a medical procedure your god finds objectionable you will be hard pressed to convince me of the necessity of your god to the overall well being of the species.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
35. absolutely can be sometimes.. many times..most of the time
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:13 PM
Apr 2014

and it is more than fair to point that out.. I do it all the time.. you know I am a Christian or attempting my best to be cbayer.. and most people who claim to be Christians.. aren't.. they cherry pick here and there to try and prove a point.. while totally ignoring the religion itself (this is just me talking from my personal perspective)

Years and years ago, I had a polisci professor who said.. facts can be put into a great pile.. and people pull one here and one there.. trying to prove their point of view, while ignoring the rest..

I have never forgot that..

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
42. nope none at all.. no one can prove or disprove..
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:22 PM
Apr 2014

no point in being dismissive of others..I can't prove anything, I have no right to be dismissive of someone who has a different system than me.. and visa versa..

cleanhippie

(19,705 posts)
54. Who is trying to disprove anything?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:04 PM
Apr 2014

You've constructed quite the strawman here. You've had that pointed out by many others yet you refuse to acknowledge it.

It makes whatever point you're trying to make very unclear.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
56. Ahh CH... Declarative statement
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:28 PM
Apr 2014

Its a statement.. No strawman.. just a simple statement of belief as I view it..

Now if you have issues with all people having a right to how they view their life and live it with whatever life statement they choose.. thats a different subject..Not trying to be unclear in any way

"Being dismissive of others walk in life in futile.. is an exercise in stroking ones own ego.

No point to yelling, no point to calling others names, and accusing them of being delusional.

You or I or the guy or gal typing the next message cannot prove or disprove the existence of God.

It is your own personal belief system "

cleanhippie

(19,705 posts)
85. I really have no idea what your point is.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:49 PM
Apr 2014

You've made a declarative statement, but offered no reasoning as to why anyone should care.

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
53. Interesting.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:56 PM
Apr 2014

Right-wingers could use that as an argument against reproductive choice, couldn't they?

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
57. they can believe what ever they want.. and live it as they choose
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:34 PM
Apr 2014

You or I or anyone else cannot stop that.. but their right to live their life ends at the tip of their noses.. we do not force them to take contraceptives.. likewise they cannot deny others who view it differently.. that is why we have goverment..

We can argue the individual actors.. some powerful, some not.. We cannot call them delusional.. it gets us nowhere.. but likewise, the rest of us have our unique belief systems that do not see contraceptives as life and death as they do..

Can't stop the Duggers from populating.. but you can't force us to have 19 kids..

We can beat our heads against all walls..it is not going to change anyone..

Thats all I am trotsky..

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
58. Again, they could argue the same thing.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:36 PM
Apr 2014

No one has the right to abort a living human being - according to them. Quit forcing your beliefs on them - and more importantly, on the "unborn."

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
61. Of course they can.. they have a right to believe that.. and live it
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:39 PM
Apr 2014

I fully respect that.. they do not have a right to force me to live their belief system.. its okay trotsky.. its okay

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
73. So now we come to making laws.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:57 PM
Apr 2014

Either abortion is legal or it's not.

Someone has to win. Someone has to lose. In your wonderful world where everyone's opinion is valid and everyone's beliefs are perfect for themselves, what becomes the law that EVERYONE has to live under?

It's okay, Peacetrain. It's okay.

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
26. If the existence of God cannot be proven or disproven...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 12:55 PM
Apr 2014

...then the hypothesis is unfalsifiable, and thus justifiably rejected as possessing no utility or rational basis for being asserted.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
28. If the existence of other life outside our planet cannot be proven or disproven...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:00 PM
Apr 2014

then the hypothesis is unfalsifiable, and thus justifiably rejected.

Right?

Or should those that believe that there probably is keep looking?

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
34. You aren't understanding the concept of falsifiability.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:12 PM
Apr 2014

The difference between not currently falsified and unfalsifiable is the difference between "haven't yet" or "cannot yet" and "cannot ever".

The manner in which God is defined as possessing limitless magical superpowers renders attaining proof of his existence or non existence not just currently difficult, but LOGICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. That is what being unfalsifiable means. That there exists no possible means of testing for the truth or falsity of the proposition. Not just that you currently lack the equipment and will need to spend some time building it or something.

The existence of extra terrestrial life is not even remotely unfalsifiable. It could easily be demonstrated by the act of going out and finding it... or it coming here and visiting. Or it could be falsified by souring the universe and establishing that... nope... nobody home. That that isn't happening right this minute is not the same thing as saying it can't happen. (Of course you would have to limit the scope of the proposition since the universe may well be infinite in size... otherwise, yes, you could formulate a proposition about alien life that would be unfalsifiable since you can't exhaustively search an infinite space... but THAT specific form of the proposition would be, again, useless.)

The idea that God exists is completely different. Even if something that was claimed to appear that people said was God, how would you demonstrate that was the truth when in order to accept the proposiotn you have to accept the existence of godlike magic superpowers? If you do that who says this entity is God and not an evil wizard pretending to be God so you'll do what he says? Etc. Or if we scour the universe and never find any sign of God? well God's using his magic powers to avoid detection of course! Because... faith... blah blah blah...

Simply introducing the various claims associated with what people generally call God invalidates all possible means of testing, and thus renders the proposition unfalsifiable.


Clear?

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
47. I'm fascinated...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:31 PM
Apr 2014

...by your ability to detect condescension over the internet in words you don't read.

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
51. About as well as your mind reading powers are working for you I'd say.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:46 PM
Apr 2014

If you insist on interpreting any attempt to explain an unfamiliar concept to you as condescension and insult the internet must be a very hostile place for you.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
52. The internet is only as hostile as those who populate it.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:55 PM
Apr 2014

The only thing I can tell you is that when I perceive that someone is responding to me in a condescending fashion, they really lose their audience.

Take it or leave it, but I suspect this is true for many.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
69. It certainly could be and the lack of other cues in internet communication
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:44 PM
Apr 2014

makes that likelihood even greater.

In that case it would behoove the other person to clarify that that is not what they intended…

if they wish to proceed with the discussion.

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
78. You mean...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:19 PM
Apr 2014

...like telling you they neither stated nor implied any insult you appear to have perceived?


cbayer

(146,218 posts)
81. Perhaps, or a mere "I am sorry that came across as condescending
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:23 PM
Apr 2014

or insulting. It was not my intent.".

It's really not that hard, and it generally leads to opening the door back to the discussion.

cleanhippie

(19,705 posts)
165. IOW, you require an apology no matter what the other person says.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:53 AM
Apr 2014

Even if they tell you that your perception was not their intent, they must apologize to you.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
38. the question of the existence of life on other planets can be stated as a falsifiable theory
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:18 PM
Apr 2014

and tests can be (and are being) conducted to falsify that theory.

Your phrasing would, more honestly, be "the existence of other life outside our planet has not been proven or disproven", but then your analogy falls apart, as the existence of gods cannot be proven or disproven while the existence of life outside our planet most certainly can.

I know you think this is an enormous gotcha, but really it isn't. It is just a silly analogy fail.

DanTex

(20,709 posts)
129. So how would one disprove the existence of ET life?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:27 AM
Apr 2014

Disproving the non-existence of ET life is simple: just find an example of life on some other planet. But I don't see how to disprove the existence of ET life, given that exhaustively searching the universe is basically impossible.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
130. You don't, you falsify the theory that there is no life outside of our planet.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:33 AM
Apr 2014

The Mars rovers are out conducting that experiment on Mars. SETI has been attempting to falsify the theory that there are no tech civs other than our own for decades. New advances in exoplanet observation are making it possible to detect the chemical composition of distant planets and we may soon be able to detect evidence of biological activity.

DanTex

(20,709 posts)
131. So that means that only one of the two theories is falsifiable, right?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:38 AM
Apr 2014

What I'm saying is that "there is no life outside of our planet" is a falsifiable theory, whereas "there is life outside of our planet" is not a falsifiable theory.

More generally, theories of the form "X exists" are not falsifiable, whereas theories of the form "X does not exist" are falsifiable. (for the most part)

 

skepticscott

(13,029 posts)
132. This is why the requirement of "falsifiability" is silly and misguided
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:53 AM
Apr 2014

Popper notwithstanding. A theory needs to be testable to be scientifically useful. Nothing is even proven "false" in the strictest sense.

DanTex

(20,709 posts)
134. I agree with you, to an extent.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:03 AM
Apr 2014

Falsifiability is a useful concept. However, it is not the be-all-end-all, and it is certainly not synonymous with the scientific method as it is sometimes claimed, or at least implied. So, yes, making it a requirement is misguided.

More generally, attempts to pin down the scientific method to a certain specific set of procedures is misguided. Science, loosely defined, involves the systematic application of reason to the understanding of natural phenomena. That can mean falsifiable theories and repeatable experiments and so on, but it doesn't have to.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
144. It is the negative. Note you could try
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:14 AM
Apr 2014

To prove that god exists by finding evidence of god, falsifying the theory that there is no god. The problem is "evidence of god". Evidence of life doesn't have this problem. The alien life analogy just misses the point.

DanTex

(20,709 posts)
153. Well, hypothetically, I don't see why there couldn't be "evidence of god".
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:57 AM
Apr 2014

Say people started getting raptured or something like that, that could qualify as "evidence of god". Or maybe if prayer experiments started yielding positive results.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
175. Really? How would disappeared people be evidence of god?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:40 AM
Apr 2014

Prayer experiments that showed positive results might be evidence of *something*, which is why the Templeton Foundation took a risk and attempted to conduct that experiment. It still wouldn't demonstrate that the effect was "god", and the results were a dismal failure.

Starboard Tack

(11,181 posts)
299. You got me thinking there Warren
Sun May 4, 2014, 07:02 PM
May 2014

If I prayed (not something I've done for a long time), but if I did and maybe a lot of us prayed that the trolls who post in this group would go away, and it happened, would that be proof that there is a God, after all? I think it might, but then again I'm not sure I believe in miracles.
What the heck, it's worth a try. Are you with me Warren? Are you with me? Let us pray!

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
29. It doesn't matter
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:00 PM
Apr 2014

There are tons of religious and non religious systems that I do not believe in.. I am fascinated, love to learn about them.. but I do not have a right to try and make someone prove or disprove that life plan guide.. what ever it is.. I have my own.. It is not rational to ask someone to prove or disprove the unprovable.. that is my point..

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
36. Ummm...
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:14 PM
Apr 2014
"but I do not have a right to try and make someone prove or disprove that life plan guide."

If they're expecting you to accept their claim about it... yeah, you absolutely have the right to require they support their claim, or to reject it if they decline or fail to do so.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
43. No you are right about that.. if someone is dismissive or you
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 01:26 PM
Apr 2014

you can bat back.. you can't change them.. as long as they are not harming others you cannot or I cannot do anything about it except say something to the effect.. you have a right to your system.. you do not have the right to demean me.. nor I you..

But gcomeau.. you cannot make people change up even the goofy ones off the ether.. you have to set boundaries.. and say enough already .. that is the best any of us can do

elias7

(4,081 posts)
68. What are you defining as god?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:42 PM
Apr 2014

I don't see how we can consider something that everybody defines differently.

If you define god as a conscious entity walking with us through our lives, granting us wishes and judging us, well that is one matter for debate, but impossible to prove or disprove.

If you define god as a symbol referring to a mathematically calculable cosmic order that underlies the workings of the universe and everything that is (and isn't) is god substance or an extension or attribute thereof, then you're just calling the mystery of the universe and of your own being "god", which necessarily exists.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
70. we all have a plan we live our lives by
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:47 PM
Apr 2014

Some life plans embrace deity.. some life plans do not.. some are not sure.. and it really does not matter. My whole point was that.. "we" cannot demean others because they believe differently.

It is pointless..

elias7

(4,081 posts)
89. So what do you mean by deity?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 04:49 PM
Apr 2014

The Hindus for example believe in many gods, all inferior to the three main gods...vishnu, shiva, and brahma, but these are mere functionaries or personifications of the encompassing concept of Brahman. The gods are concrete forms that help our concrete minds, they don't come close to touching the Truth of the universe and of your being.

No one knows what that is, it is beyond imagination, conceptualization, beyond gender, beyond naming, beyond being, beyond all thought, and so on.

But whatever that is that underlies the mystery of Peacetrain's existence, that we can, by definition call God. And therefore, if you exist, then by definition, God exists, just not in the form you like to disbelieve in.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
96. :)
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:17 PM
Apr 2014

We are all finite beings, maneuvering as best we can in the few years we exist.. I see God in all things.. some see God in no things .. and it is okay.. we all do the best we can, coming from whatever place we start as sentient beings..

As my op originally said.. no one can prove or disprove anything.. as far as the existence of God..this being the religion forum.. that is what I am talking about..

You might find this interesting..

Christianity All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye so to them; for this is the law and the prophets.
Matthew 7:1

Confucianism Do not do to others what you would not like yourself. Then there will be no resentment against you, either in the family or in the state.
Analects 12:2

Buddhism Hurt not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful.
Udana-Varga 5,1

Hinduism This is the sum of duty; do naught onto others what you would not have them do unto you.
Mahabharata 5,1517

Islam No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself.
Sunnah

Judaism What is hateful to you, do not do to your fellowman. This is the entire Law; all the rest is commentary.
Talmud, Shabbat 3id

Taoism Regard your neighbor’s gain as your gain, and your neighbor’s loss as your own loss.
Tai Shang Kan Yin P’ien

Zoroastrianism That nature alone is good which refrains from doing another whatsoever is not good for itself.
Dadisten-I-dinik, 94,5

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
154. Well, this morning when I got to work, my SQL server was down, so
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:22 AM
Apr 2014

I'm thinking this 'plan' thing is rubbish.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
72. But isn't that exactly the point he is making?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 02:47 PM
Apr 2014

If the definition varies so greatly and the number of variations comes close to equalling the number of believers (and non-believers, for that matter), then what is the point of trying to argue about who is right?

There just is no right.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
84. It is easy to disprove many specific ideas of God.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:41 PM
Apr 2014

For example? If you believe in a God that promises "all" and "whatever" we "ask"? Then simply "ask" for a giant miracle now. If it appears,then your God might be real. If it does not, then he is not.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
87. Oh, please. That's just simplistic hogwash.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:52 PM
Apr 2014

You can spend your days trying to disprove individual ideas of god.

First of all, you won't convince them. Secondly, it's about the most utterly pointless exercise I can imagine.

It would be like someone trying to convince you there was a god.

Your crusade is doomed.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
139. Hey? Isn't calling atheist ideas "simplistic hogwash" hurtful?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:32 AM
Apr 2014

But I am tolerant, and will not object. Instead I will allow your speech, in the name of freedom of speech. Though I was recently censored by religious censors, on the Religion=delusion post.

In any case, consider the possibility that if we disprove one specific notion of God, after another? Finally the whole begins to disappear, bit by bit. Until, as Rene Salm (SP?) recently suggested, nothing is left but the smile of the Cheshire cat. While next, even the smile disappears. So perhaps it is possible to disprove God; bit by bit.

And by the way? If our belief in God is false, if there is no God, then proving it is not "pointless," but quite important. If we are wasting and often even losing/"giving" our lives to a false idea, that is a serious thing.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
147. Hey! That's not an "atheist idea". That's just your idea.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:33 AM
Apr 2014

You weren't "censored by religious censors". You said something uncivil and rude and were censored by a random jury. I believe you said it to me, and, for the record, I was not the alerter.

"We" are not going to disprove one specific notion of god after another. There are as many ideas as there are people, both believers and non-believers.

I think you really need a new hobby.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
151. SOME atheists do not say there is no God; they perhaps merely are disinterested in one
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:43 AM
Apr 2014

Other persons however, do say there isn't one.

Anyone can read what I wrote regarding negative evidence on religion, by clicking to see it; and the reasons for it? What was censored was done for clearly religious reasons; reasons moreover not relating to the comment itself. When Freud himself said "all religion is a delusion," shouldn't we be allowed to discuss that idea? Or, if we censor those who consider it, isn't the next step burning the books by Freud? Though book-burning is common in religious folks. They attempt to destroy all the evidence against them.

In our present forum? The question of whether there is a god or not, and whether we can prove it, directly pertains to the present opinion post.

Religious folks regularly censor those who disagree with them. Or burn their books. Or put them on "ignore." Or execute them for heresy. But that is beyond rude, of course.

elias7

(4,081 posts)
90. There is no right,
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 04:54 PM
Apr 2014

But there is an answer, though we'll never know what it is.

Call that answer "god", and therefore god necessarily exists. Gods that can be named or called upon or prayed to are just anthropomorphic projections of our own psyche, but not really fact.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
91. Agree. There probably is an answer, but we will never know it.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 05:00 PM
Apr 2014

So I will continue to live my life the same way, god or not.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
156. We could know.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:25 AM
Apr 2014

If there was a god, and it wanted us to know it, and it hopped its happy ass on down here to show us it existed, then we'd know, right?

The potential to know is there. We don't know because either said gods don't exist, or, they do not desire to reveal it/their selves to us.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
160. Someone posted something here the other day that I found very intriguing.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:34 AM
Apr 2014

They said:

Maybe it's not the deity's job to show himself/herself/itself to YOU.

Maybe it's YOUR job to show YOURSELF to the deity.

-Common Sense Party


Now, I'm not a believer, as you know, but I find this argument that god should just "hop it's happy ass on down here to show us it existed" pretty silly.

If there is a god, why in the world would you think it had any thought, let alone obligation, to prove itself to you.

We may not know because it is something we are just plain incapable of knowing. The two options you put forward are very limited.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
166. Many (I would risk saying 'most') caricatures of gods demand some form of allegiance or faith.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:56 AM
Apr 2014

Since its existence isn't readily apparent, it would make no logical sense for it to do otherwise.

And it would make no logical sense for it to create me, as parsimonious/skeptical/incredulous as I am, and then demand such a leap of faith from me, as I am incapable of it. It would suggest a sadistic creator, that would design us sick, and command us to be well.


Often the counter-argument I hear is 'it would take away my free will to choose to follow that god or not', but that doesn't follow from awareness. I still choose allegiance or not. I still evaluate the morality/claims/edicts of such a god if it revealed itself to me. Allegiance is not automatic, predicated upon perception of existence. (I realize you did not use this argument, just putting that out there)

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
167. Well, that's what the faith part is all about, isn't it.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:07 AM
Apr 2014

No one or thing demands anything of you. You have painted your own very narrow picture of god. It's a very negative image and I am not surprised that you would then reject that.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
170. Well, I am mostly speaking to the abrahamic traditions.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:21 AM
Apr 2014

Such tradition has claimed historical precedent of god revealing itself directly to humanity. Granted, this is limited to the abrahamic god.

I don't think it's an unrealistic expectation.
But I am incapable of faith. Literally incapable. I need something. Some shred of evidence that I can test. And this applies to all things, not just religious faith. Engineering, flight, electrical systems, structural things, sociology, there is no limit to what I do not advance, unverified, some element of faith without critical examination.

Character flaw perhaps? But the implication is that I was created. If I was created, I was created in that manner. This is what I am, not what I choose to be. So if such a being created me so, AND withholds critical evidence for its existence, it cannot hope me to extend it credit, unless it is attempting to torture me for some purpose.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
172. I believe that you are incapable of faith.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:26 AM
Apr 2014

In the same vein, I have come to believe that some people are incapable of having a lack of faith. It is just who they are.

It is those that feel that their way is the one way and that they must convince others they are wrong and somehow "save" them that I object to.

It smells so much like the way GLBT were treated for so long.

Again, I don't think anyone or anything expects you to extend it credit. You don't believe and that's just fine.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
174. Totally agree.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:40 AM
Apr 2014

I fully acknowledge, not just some people, but MOST people are predisposed to faith. (I think that may be changing over time though, bears further study.)

I find the LGBT correlation compelling. I fully believe my friends when they describe their sexuality in that manner; it is their nature, not a conscious choice. My inability to extend faith is a perfect mirror of that balance of choice/nature.

I find that highly interesting as a means of, for instance, falsifying the entire abrahamic faith, as all of the old testament source documentation speaks to same-sex relations as being sinful. Which would imply, as with me on my 'I cannot change my nature, I cannot advance faith without verification, therefore I am doomed', so too for my friends, who cannot deny their sexual nature, and thus are similarly (according to same old-testament/torah/all three abrahamic faiths doctrine) doomed.

Created sick, commanded to be well. That's a horrible proposition. Sadistic. I would call it evil.


I simply cannot believe a creator, that would bother creating us at all, is sadistic enough to engineer such a situation. That we could be doomed for our nature, as created.

I would, if I had to flip a mental coin, assume that such a being simply didn't exist, apply Ockham's razor and assume the specifications in that source documentation are wholesale fabrication by humans with an agenda, sooner than I would accept the premise of a god that intentionally engineers us 'unwell'/doomed, and denies us any tools to salvage that fate.


There is of course a third option; a god as supposed above that cares enough to create us, but doesn't actually desire a personal relationship, and the concepts of hell, and sin as specified in the OT are corruptions, invented by humans without god's assistance, consent, approval, etc.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
176. Meh, I don't think the bible should ever be taken literally and reject
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:44 AM
Apr 2014

attempts to use it to "falsify the entire abrahamic faith".

I don't care what it says, GLBT rights are civil rights, and most people of faith think that no matter what interpretation of the bible others spout.

You seem so intent on defining and describing this thing that you don't believe in. What's with that?

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
177. Becasue I want to know if it exists.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:50 AM
Apr 2014

So many people insist it does, I have a burning curiosity to discover the truth. In all things, but this issue particularly because it is so contentious and does impact my life as others do things, for instance at the legislative level, for religious reasons. Abortion. Physician assisted suicide. Family planning. Social safety nets. So many things hinge on how individuals arrive at a conclusion on this issue.

The abrahamic faiths are built upon the bible. If the source documentation can be proven to be fabrication, wholesale human invention... what then of the faith itself?

Seems to me it would follow that that specific faith might be chucked out. Now, I don't think that means the people invested in it would suddenly become atheists. History suggests such believers would find a new anchor for their faith.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
178. But you will never know, imo.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:00 PM
Apr 2014

You may be able to discuss with others what they base their belief and faith on. You may be able to persuasively argue with some people who's opinions you disagree with, even when those opinions are religiously based.

But you will never know.

This need to falsify religion is folly and serves no purpose. It can't be done.

That's why I really like this OP.

FWIW, and I have probably said this to you before, I don't know if there is a god and I don't care. If it were to be proven or disproven tomorrow, it would change nothing about my life.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
179. Certain religions make very precise claims about the nature of the universe.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:05 PM
Apr 2014

Those claims often can be falsified.

I think the 'homosexuality is a sin' one is, on its face, blatantly false. That seems, to me, a great gaping wound in the side of every single religion that purports to claim homosexuality is a sin. The claim does not appear to be true. The nature of not just humanity, but untold other species indicates it simply isn't true. There are even sociological concepts that suggest it is wholly beneficial to our species.


When you start pulling bricks out of the foundation for a religion, it seems to me, that at some point, it must collapse.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
180. Why are you so intent on causing the collapse of religion?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:13 PM
Apr 2014

Why are you not just content to not believe?

Certainly those who condemn homosexuality or do not support full civil rights should be challenged at every opportunity, but it makes no difference to me where those beliefs come from. They are just wrong.

Just as surely the ideas I grew up with about civil rights, social justice, peace and taking care of the most marginalized among us were all presented to me in a religious context. In no way do I want to see that kind of religious ideology "collapsed".

This crusade of yours really begins to feel evangelical. Perhaps it has more to do with your personal battles than those outside of you.

I guess that if you could falsify religious belief in general, then you would be right and that would be a good thing. Since you can't, you are left wondering if you are right or not.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
181. Because their faith doesn't stay with them.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:36 PM
Apr 2014

They seek to use it as a means to force or control my behavior.

I'd care a lot less if they didn't do that.
For instance, I have had occasion to authorize the destruction of 7 fertilized multi-celled blastocysts as part of an IVF cycle. There is an enormous bloc of Christians in this country that call what I did 'murder' and seek to ban it with force of law. And they've nearly done so.

That effort to ban is predicated on their faith, which tells them those fertilized ovums are people, with metaphysical soul thingies, and etc.

I'm mostly seeking to protect myself here. If believers just kept their stuff to themselves, for instance, by admonishing people who have electively become members of their faith not to do such things, and leave me alone, that would be another matter. If people could just do that, we'd have no disagreement. But they seek to control *me*. To extend their morality to *me*.

That's a problem. A problem I seek to eliminate.

You don't see me railing about UU's or Pantheists or Pagans in here, do you? Not because they are numerically inferior, but rather, because they don't assert control over my behavior. I don't believe in their faith, just as hard as I don't believe in the catholic abstraction of God, yet, you don't see me flipping over their tables and getting in arguments with them, do you? There is a reason for that.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
183. Well certainly you are well within your rights to object to anyone
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:44 PM
Apr 2014

who uses their faith to force or control your behavior.

But I would suggest you can do that without causing the collapse of religion.

The power is in the politics. Your example about the blastocysts really shows that the politics are working. They aren't winning this, no matter what they believe.

Are you not just as much a "botherer" as they are? You seek to impose your beliefs on them when you talk about eliminating, collapsing, falsifying.

If all you really care about is that their beliefs don't impact on you personally, then why not limit your crusade to that issue? Why broaden it to something that really is not achievable anyway?

It's good that you can separate out those groups and institutions that you do not have an issue with. However, I would suggest that your net is still much too large and that you include many people in the "bad" group that really don't belong there.

They would be your run of the mill believers who do not wish to control you in any way. That would be most christians, imo.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
186. I don't think there's any equivalency there at all.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:05 PM
Apr 2014

On the political side, it's a numbers game. They are seeking to increase their numbers. Constantly. It's actually a tenet of their faith to do so. Numbers means votes. They get enough, they win. The wins we had politically in the 00's, are directly attributable to a decline in evangelicalism in this country, and a rise in secularism overall. That trend can be reversed. 70 years ago, evangelicals had no mass block of political power at all.

"You seek to impose your beliefs on them when you talk about eliminating, collapsing, falsifying."

Um, no I specified I have no expectation they will become atheists as a result. Nor is pointing out flaws in their claimed faith in any way equivalent to say, passing a law, forcing something upon them. You'd have to compare that to people like me passing a law banning the existence of, say, churches. Or banning the print of certain religious texts. Something I don't seek to do.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
189. The religious right is losing ground, imo. edited to avoid starting another subthread.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:10 PM
Apr 2014

We allowed them to progress much too far, but I think the electorate in general is sick to death of them. I would predict that their numbers are waning, not growing and that the republican party as a whole is going to start distancing themselves.

They were not politically active until about 30 years ago when they were recruited and convinced that political activism was an essential part of their belief system. They were promised that GLBT rights would be tightly limited and that Roe v. Wade would be overturned. Although they made some worrisome inroads in some areas, they really have not achieved any of those promised goals.

Do you really consider an equivalence between passing a law based on a religious tenet, and me

pointing out XYZ tenet of their faith, and then showing evidence that suggests or in some cases, proves that it cannot be true?

Are those really equivalent? Force of law, versus me engaging in dialogue, employing reason, highlighting evidence?

These are the same, to you?


No, these are not the same to me.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
190. Oh no. Much longer ago than that.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:22 PM
Apr 2014

Evangelicals are what happened when the Republican Party went totally berserk at the end of the 50's, beginning of the 60's, culminating in the mass-shift after the passage of the Civil Rights Act.

Before 1950, the republican party supported suffrage. Opposed slavery. Hell, going into the vote on the 1964 CRA, republicans voted for its passage in much higher numbers than democrats did. In the 50's, leading republicans like Goldwater publicly supported legislation that fought discrimination against people for their sexuality. All easily accessible historical record.


During that period, the Republican Party suffered an influx of evangelicals, seeking to gain political dominance. We're suffering the fallout from that today.


"Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they're sure trying to do so, it's going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can't and won't compromise. I know, I've tried to deal with them.
.....
The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom.... I'm frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in 'A,' 'B,' 'C,' and 'D.' Just who do they think they are?... I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of "conservatism." "

- Barry Goldwater, (1909–1998), five-term US Senator, Republican Party nominee for President in 1964*, Maj. Gen., US Air Force Reserves, author of The Conscience of a Conservative.


Goldwater lost. The CRA passed. The dixiecrats jumped to the republican party. All fucking hell broke loose.

And today, we suffer.

There used to be compromise. We used to have (what we call progressive today) progressive allies in the republican party. That party used to stand up for civil rights.



I do agree that currently the religious right is losing ground, but that is at risk, every single election. They can come back. They have managed to hold the House through craft and gerrymandering. I'm somewhat optimistic about the mid-terms and the next election, but nothing is guaranteed. Every single election remains an existential fight that we MUST win.

They haven't overturned RvW, but they've nibbled away at abortion just the same.
http://www.salon.com/2014/04/28/mississippis_lone_abortion_clinic_fights_to_stay_open_while_the_fate_of_legal_abortion_in_the_south_hangs_in_the_balance/


This fight is still on, and still desperate.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
192. Ok, I think we are talking about two different waves.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:31 PM
Apr 2014

But the religious left played critical roles in the AA civil rights movement and the anti-VN war movement, so there was some counter-balance.

Today I see them coming back and I welcome them with open arms.

The fight will always be on, AC. I think we win it politically though, and not by fighting their religion.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
188. Do you really consider an equivalence between passing a law based on a religious tenet, and me
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:07 PM
Apr 2014

pointing out XYZ tenet of their faith, and then showing evidence that suggests or in some cases, proves that it cannot be true?

Are those really equivalent? Force of law, versus me engaging in dialogue, employing reason, highlighting evidence?

These are the same, to you?

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
203. But if God exists, and wanted us to believe in him? Just showing himself would do it.
Thu May 1, 2014, 08:59 AM
May 2014

So why doesn't he just do that? Why doesn't God just show us himself, to prove he exists; and in that way all but guarantee we follow him? Why all the elaborate arguments and Bibles to convince us ... when all he really has to do is ... show up?

This allegedly silly question is a logical one.

And it is a major question in the Bible itself. Where it is unanswered, it seems to many. (cf. "faith&quot .

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
155. If there IS a supernatural god
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:23 AM
Apr 2014

and it is correctly perceived by at least some believers, then there would be a 'right' one, then, wouldn't there?


And if their isn't one...

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
157. I don't necessarily know if that's true.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:28 AM
Apr 2014

What if this entity, should it exist, presents itself differently to different people. That might lead one person to describe something that is entirely different than what someone else describes.

The question is not answerable, imo, and that is why there is no point in arguing it.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
164. Said being could make it clear to us that it has many forms.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:52 AM
Apr 2014

Most claim exclusivity. Or, the idea of that god is relayed as such.


This borders on the oft-claim 'god is unknowable to us' which actually implies a limitation on a being that is purported to be omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient. Such a being, by it's very definition, could make itself knowable to us, without limitation, if it desired to. It can, by definition, do anything.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
168. Why might it even bother. You may be no more than an ant in an ant pile.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:09 AM
Apr 2014

Believers do believe that god has sent messages and messengers. They feel that is adequate.

You seem to want some kind of personal recognition.

That's probably not going to happen, even if there is a god.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
171. Most of those claims of evidence/messengers occured long before I was born.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 11:26 AM
Apr 2014

Evidence I cannot critically evaluate. Evidence that does not impress me. Evidence that could justify not just my previous example of an abrahamic god, but other mutually exclusive polytheism, naturalism, pantheism, etc.

As hrmjustin pointed out yesterday, many of those believers believe that 'phase' is over, that god will not reveal itself any further. That seems pretty arbitrary and convenient, since such evidence is now withheld, as humanity has developed tools that could actually verify the claim.

It should bother, if it bothered to create me as I am. If it cares at all. If it doesn't care, if I am of such little interest, why then would it care that I worship or not? That I believe or not? The abrahamic tradition indicates it cares very much. So much so that some sects (not all) of that tradition claim I will be tortured horribly for eternity if I fail to advance that faith.

Peregrine

(992 posts)
76. I whole heartedly disagree with the premise
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:10 PM
Apr 2014

that we cannot prove nor disprove the existence of god.

I used to accept that, but listening to Krauss I changed. Anything that interacts with nature must leave evidence, and there is no evidence.

edhopper

(33,996 posts)
86. Yes this
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:52 PM
Apr 2014

If you tell me your God does not a and never has had an impact on the physical Universe, then I would say no evidence would exist. But if you say you God has impacted the physical Universe, than I would ask for evidence of this.
Of course a God that does nothing might not be a God.

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
126. Ahem
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:24 AM
Apr 2014

The response could just be "God... using his unfathomable and limitless magic superpowers, erased all the evidence so that people could find Him by faith"


Try countering that line of crazy using any rational attempt at disproving it. THAT is why God can't be proven or disproven, because even allowing the hypothesis yo be entertained trashes all rules of logic and evidence one would appeal to for proof or disproof. Once you bring magic powers into the discussion rational analysis packs it in and goes home.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
143. But their vague God is demonstrably not the Biblical one. Who constantly demands "proof"s of himself
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:11 AM
Apr 2014

The God of the Bible constantly asserted that we would know him, and those who follow him, by their concrete, physical, material results. Their physical "fruits," "works," "signs," "deeds," and "proofs."

So as for those who try to assert that God does not need to give material evidence for his existence? They are not Christians; they are not following the Bible at all. To be sure, such people could next simply agree that they are simply, admittedly, not following the Bible, or its God; and they could simply say that they are not Christian.

Many do this. But I suspect that most who argue for the God who needs and offers no proofs, will be cautious about explicitly crossing the Bible; most still think or say they are Christians.

Therefore, quoting the Bible and its demand for "proofs" of Gods existence, still carries some weight among a billion believers or so. Noting that the God that demands or offers no physical evidence, is not Christian, will slow down a few. Who want to still appear to be Christian. (In order to survive the next CHristian purge?).

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
146. There is *always* an excuse.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:32 AM
Apr 2014

"It is said, 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test'"


Or the infinitely abusable "God works in mysterious ways" dodge. If the mind of God is beyond human comprehension then you can claim any behavior you want is in character... just for reasons us poor feeble humans don't get.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
152. Then God says "Put me to the test" in Mal. 3.10; "test everything" (1 THess. 5.21?)
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:53 AM
Apr 2014

The fact is that there's a whole series of books showing that the Bible finally endorses scientific testing of religion, to see if it is true or false. The "not put God to the test" quote turns out to merely mean we should not "test" - or better translated elsewhere, "tempt" - his patience, by doing rash things. While the rest of the Bible over and over asserts that a real God, should be able to prove his existence; by presenting great material "fruits," "works," "signs," "deeds," and "proofs." As "observe"ed and verified, by real "science" (Dan. 1.4-15 KJE).

As for the "God works in mysterious ways" dodge/apologetic? Note that this necessarily denies much of the Bible itself. So anyone who claims this idea of God, has abandoned Christianity. Which many of those who use this excuse, do not really want to openly do.

Yes, there are thousands of excuses; whole books full of what we call "apologetics." But many of us are disproving them all; one by one. LIke this one.

The "God" who is allegedly beyond all proofs, who does not need to offer material proof of his own existence, is a concept liberal preachers sold us in church, to try to counter objections to Christianity. But this concept fails for reasons we need to make clear; and is simply one more sophistry itself.

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
162. Uh huh.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:43 AM
Apr 2014

And I return to you "God works in mysterious ways"!

And that pathetic little line can be trotted out for *any possible observation you could ever make*.


The point here is that logical analysis of a ridiculous magical fairytale creature can;t be performed, which makes establishing a proof or disproof impossible if you even bother accepting the premise that this thing might exist in the first place.


The proper grounds on which to reject the claim is thus it's unfalsifiablility.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
185. But 1) there is much in God that seems clearly outlined; things not so "mysterious"
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 12:59 PM
Apr 2014

As for example when Jesus is shown walking on water. And then we are promised "all" and "whatever" we "ask"; all the works that Jesus did, and "greater things than these." (John 14.11 ff). Here and in hundreds of parts of the Bible, God is for the moment not so mysterious; but is making large, clear, physical, material promises. Promises that can simply be tested ... and found true, or false.

Most importantly: the exact testing procedure moreover, is very, very clearly and unambiguously outlined in say, Dan. 1.4-15; 1 Kings 18.20-40; Mal. 3.10 ff. etc.

Indeed, 2) if God is so COMPLETELY "mysterious"? Then preachers and their sermons and commandments should be impossible to clearly make. And yet they are dogmatically proclaiming things constantly. For all the world as if indeed, though some things God does are "mysterious," many other things are not.

If God is so mysterious always, then preachers should never make any clear statements at all.

3) To be sure, you make an important point. Falsifiability is a great standard. Unfortunately, people who follow the Bible and nothing much else, won't pay much attention to it. For that reason, I write all my positions using biblical arguments, primarily; arguments that Bible Christians will listen too. Though this seems hopeless at first, and through counter-arguments seems endless? As it turns out some new inroads are being made even in this genre. By now we have hundreds of strictly biblical responses, to common Christian "biblical" apologetics.

Both approaches therefore remain useful.

Yes, there are hundreds, even thousands of apologetics responses. But we are answering them all today; collectively and individually too. In part, simply by noting the parts of the Bible they contradict.

 

gcomeau

(5,764 posts)
187. Well sure, there are hundreds of things
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:06 PM
Apr 2014

...people clearly outline about God. Much of them mutually contradictory.

But try to pin own any one, try to show any observation that contradicts it... any evidence that refutes it... and it's an instant trip to "no man can know the mind of God, God can do whatever he feels like".


It's a bullshit copout response, and yes the second they're done using it they'll go right back to acting like they know the mind of God just fine on anything they want to claim he wants... but that doesn't matter. As long as it fits in the general characteristics ascribed to God, which it does, it's a universal get out of evidence free card.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
191. Pointing that out to them, just the way you have done here, is one very useful thing to do.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:23 PM
Apr 2014

Last edited Fri May 2, 2014, 09:02 AM - Edit history (1)

Sure, the arguments go on and on. But with a million atheists and ex-preachers helping? We can cover a million arguments in a single day.

We've just started with two good counterarguments, here and now.

Thanks for your help; good luck!

ADDENDUM:

Suppose we ask why God does not prove that he exists - just by showing up in person. God showing us, by his miraculous appearance, and other huge miracles, that he is real, and powerful. This would seem to be an obvious solution to our doubts. But preachers don't want us to ask this. And one of the many sermons used by preachers to try to “answer” this, is their idea that God does not show himself in the world in any obvious way - because he is “mysterious.”

God does not obviously show himself, because God is “MYSTERIOUS”? Jesus told his followers to be “wise as serpents”; or as we might translate this, “sly as snakes.” This is curious; since normally snakes are associated with the devil. But in any case? The preachers who claim to follow the Bible are indeed, quite sly and snake-like in their arguments; their sermons. Which all turn out to be based merely on sophistical or dishonest logic. For example: does the “mysterious” sermon really hold up?

Here as usual our preachers have found PARTS of the Bible to work from; but they do not really honor ALL of the Bible, or see it all. To be sure, PARTS of the Bible do mention the mystery of God. And PARTS seem to show God hiding himself, being “mysterious,” and not obvious, visible. But? Hundreds of OTHER parts show God being rather obvious. And just showing up, visibly, and in person. To show himself, and talk to us; to work giant miracles. And in this way simply prove that he is real. Adam and Eve, Noah, and many others, see God live and in person. Other parts of the Bible to be sure, contradict that; other parts say that no one has ever seen God himself. But this just shows that the Bible is at best, contradictory on this subject, even in the New Testament. Again and again in the Bible, God does show up, live and in person and working huge miracles; to help convince us he is real. In the BULK of the Bible in fact, God is not so obscure or mysterious or “invisible”; not at all.

And are the people like Adam and Noah convinced by that? Yes, they are.

So the “God is mysterious” sermon or homily is not honest, or true to the entire Bible itself. And as we will see, neither are the dozens of other sermons that try to excuse God not showing himself on other grounds. Like the “faith” sermon, etc.. Nor, likewise, the other sermon: the one that next insists that people might not be convinced even if God did show up, working huge wonders or “signs” in our own time today. The fact is that when God himself showed up, he convinced.

Preachers to be sure have, will come back at us, with a thousand sly objections. To as the Bible said “whitewash” the failure of their earlier sermons, their religion.

But suppose we begin answering their sly responses. One by one.

ladjf

(17,320 posts)
82. One thing you can do is to realize that objective proof of God existence or non-existence
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 03:25 PM
Apr 2014

is not available to us so quit worrying about it. nt

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
307. Seems we CAN prove the non-existence of God. In "What if God's Existence Were Proven," recentDU post
Mon May 5, 2014, 09:01 AM
May 2014

There we are presenting several widely-influential arguments that show that not just the God of the Bible, but any all-good, all-powerful God, could not exist.

Some of the better-known arguments of this kind include "The Problem of Evil," especially. But there are several others.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1218&pid=128247

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
98. Answer two questions -
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:28 PM
Apr 2014

1. What is the source of life?

2. What is the source of consciousness?

If anyone can answer both question, I'd be willing to bet a nickel that the content of those answers would supply the basis for a reasonable case supporting the existence of non-mythological God.

Any takers?

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
99. I for one will be really interested in watching this thread
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:36 PM
Apr 2014

source of life.. wow.. that is a loaded one.. human life .. plant life.. microbial life.. a hiccup in the universe.. and consciousness.. many used to say, that was an awareness of ones own mortality..elephants mourn their dead. they are aware..

two very good questions.. I certainly do not know..

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
100. A hiccup?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:51 PM
Apr 2014

Maybe, and maybe the default state. Regardless, both exist. Where did they originate?

edhopper

(33,996 posts)
101. That is assuming that consciousness
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:54 PM
Apr 2014

Is something other than the result of how the brain functions.
Does it exist outside the biology of the brain? Is it more than the result of the evolution of a thinking brain.
At what stage in human development did self awareness come in, and does it occur in other animals.
Perhaps it is a question that has nothing to do with a higher power of any kind?

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
104. tests for self awareness in non humans have been passed by a surprising variety of animals.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 08:55 PM
Apr 2014

For example the mirror test has been passed by all great apes, elephants, dolphins, and magpies. Other tests have been passed by additional non humans. All of which points to consciousness being an evolved emergent property of brain functions.

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
109. what deity is required?
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:10 PM
Apr 2014

Not having a complete explanation of something does not prove that "therefore god". It just means that we don't know all the pieces of the puzzle yet.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
112. That's true, and has nothing to do with my post
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:21 PM
Apr 2014

and neither do deities, for that matter.

Can we pursue your earlier statement? What brain functions result in the property of consciousness?

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
128. Did that make you feel better?
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 06:24 AM
Apr 2014

Last edited Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:14 PM - Edit history (1)

Your ego is in the way. Why not follow your statement about consciousness being a product of brain functions? Does it occur in all brains, or only higher brains? Would consciousness occur in a sufficiently complex brain simulation?

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
105. Perhaps it's an unfair question
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 08:56 PM
Apr 2014

scientists and philosophers have engaged in infinite debate over the definition. Are there varieties of consciousness? If it means "awareness of the body" then animals are conscious, maybe even plants.

But what is it's source? What combination of events must be in play for consciousness to exist?

edhopper

(33,996 posts)
110. We don't have a complete answer
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:15 PM
Apr 2014

Obviously. But there is also no evidence that consciousness comes from anything beyond biology and neurology.
You question seems to imply that there is something more to it simply because we haven't pinpointed the exact location and process in the brain.
That is just a God of the Gaps argument.
So I don't see why these are the vital questions for this thread.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
111. You're right, that's a God of the Gaps argument
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:19 PM
Apr 2014

but it isn't my argument.

And if you don't see the relevance of the questions, feel 100% free to not answer them

However, I think you're correct that consciousness is a product either biology or neurology, or perhaps both. Warren Stupidity is making a similar case in the thread, and I'd like to encourage that train of thought.

edhopper

(33,996 posts)
116. Okay
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:41 PM
Apr 2014

I guess I don't get what your meaning was when you posted those 2 question?

Why is the answer a case for the existence of a God?

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
124. awareness of the body is not self awareness
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 11:10 PM
Apr 2014

the mirror test is interesting not because it evidences "awareness of body" but because it evidences a "theory of mind", a minimal level of self awareness. You should at least get acquainted with the basics if you are going to discuss consciousness.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
196. Well, that depends on who is writing the definition
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 07:10 PM
Apr 2014

but if you read my post more carefully, you'll see I never stated that it was my belief that awareness of the body is synonymous for/with self awareness. I never even defined what was meant by "awareness of the body," and ever so carefully left the phrase in quotes so that it would be clear that I was using someone else's words.

Now, if you want to criticize me for not following APA format in the citation and referencing of my sources, then I accept your criticism.

I am guilty as charged.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
102. I think the source of life on this planet can be satisfactorily explained by evolution.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 07:55 PM
Apr 2014

But consciousness is a whole different issue and makes me scratch my head.

How can evolution account for the apparently great leaps in consciousness that are in evidence, particularly in the ways that it seems to offer no evolutionary advantage?

 

Warren Stupidity

(48,181 posts)
107. Well that is a common misconception. Evolution does not provide an explanation for the origin
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:08 PM
Apr 2014

of life. Doesn't cover abiogenisis at all.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
108. I don't think evolution explains the source of life at all
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:09 PM
Apr 2014

just the diversity. If I'm not mistaken, NDT said something similar on an early episode of Cosmos. I'm of the opinion that life did not begin on Earth, but permeates the Universe.

Your question on evolution and consciousness is very nice.

I'll counter with another: Is self-awareness a strength?

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
113. Your question is very interesting to me.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:28 PM
Apr 2014

There have been times in my life when I wished I was less self-aware. It seemed to cause more angst than answers.

I've also had times when I wished I was more mediocre and that would mean less demand on me to be successful.

There is a bliss in being simple that I fear that I have not had. I have tried to simplify my life to a great extent, but I am still plagued by self-awareness and the need to achieve.

So, I'm not convinced it is a strength. Maybe better to be a porpoise…. though they may have a level of self-awareness as well.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
118. I can't currently watch videos.
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:42 PM
Apr 2014

But having been around a lot of dolphins, I think they have a certain degree of self-awareness.

Just not as much as most humans seem to have.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
121. Sorry - here's a quick breakdown
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 10:04 PM
Apr 2014

A team of divers are watching a school of manta rays. A wild dolphin approaches them, lingering around the divers. It approaches on diver, and roll on its side, revealing a tangle of fishing wire and hook. The dolphin patiently allows the diver to cut away the wire, takes a break for a breath of air, and returns so the diver can complete the task.

The dolphin is aware of the injury, and responds by seeking assistance from the only things in the water that can help. Fear is overcome by reason. Not only do I see self-awareness there, but I see an example of an evolutionary advantage. Self-awareness opens the door for self-preservation.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
145. Sounds very cool and I will put it aside to watch later.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:25 AM
Apr 2014

Have you ever heard the radio lab story about the whale who is cut loose by some divers. He returns and stares intently at each diver individually. Was he saying thank you? He could have just as soon killed them.

Self awareness opens the door for self-preservation? I'm not so sure. Roaches scatter when you turn on the light. Are they self aware or is it just instinctual?

trotsky

(49,533 posts)
122. "I've also had times when I wished I was more mediocre"
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 10:14 PM
Apr 2014

I'm sorry for your burden of being so superior, cbayer. That must be tough for you.

Heddi

(18,312 posts)
193. Oh, Trots, you have no idea the BURDEN of PERFECTION
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 02:01 PM
Apr 2014

that cbayer must carry with her at all times. How absolutely horrible it is to be the most interesting person in the room...You haven't the slightest idea how isolating it is to be the most perfect, self-aware, un-mundane person in the world. IN THE UNIVERSE, EVEN. Then again, maybe you *would* understand if you weren't so mundane

 

Goblinmonger

(22,340 posts)
194. It's tough being you.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 02:06 PM
Apr 2014

From what you have all posted, I'm sure you, your husband, and your father all get together on the yacht you live on and commiserate about how hard it is to be so god damned awesome.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
119. Ok, time for me to do some school work
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 09:44 PM
Apr 2014

I'll check back tonight or tomorrow morning, and if no one has answered both questions, then I will, and I'll open the answers to the group's criticisms.

Afterward, I'll make my arguments in support of a non-mythological God.

Thanks!

Jim__

(14,155 posts)
136. When we talk about the source of life, we have to limit the talk to the life that we know ...
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:03 AM
Apr 2014

... that is life on earth. The source of that life appears to be the chemical elements present on the primordial earth and the energy pouring onto the surface of the earth; mostly from the sun, but also from the interior of the earth. That energy allows those chemicals to interact in long-term stable processes that can change in response to changes in the environment. Over time, some of those processes are able to isolate themselves from the environment, and spin-off child processes - that is, over time, at least one of those processes will meet our definition of life.

The source of consciousness appears to be complex communication networks of living cells. These communication networks can detect both conditions in the external environment and conditions across the organism that contains the network. Of course, consciousness is not fully understood and so there are many aspects of consciousness that we have not yet been able to explain. It may be that after continued study we come to a good understanding of consciousness; or, it may be that a good understanding of consciousness is beyond our capabilities.

I can't prove either of those claims. Those claims represent my understanding of the current state of knowledge with respect to your questions. And, of course, those claims don't account for the existence of the energy, the matter, or the way they interact - but, we have to draw some line around our explanation.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
197. These are great answers, Jim_
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:52 PM
Apr 2014

and I understand that you acknowledge that you can't prove either claim, but I'm not here to try to prove you wrong.

With that, let's take your 1st answer and summarize:

In an open system, given enough time and the proper resources, multiple long-term stable chemical processes will eventually occur. After sufficient iterations, at least one of these processes will meet an acceptable definition of life.

Is that correct?


Let's do the same with the 2nd answer:

Based on your first answer, life is a complex chemical process, or a system of such processes.

When that system of processes reaches a sufficient level of complexity, an equally complex sensitivity to external and internal stimuli is created, resulting in what we call consciousness. Highly refined consciousness is what we refer to as self-awareness.

Is this also correct?
 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
202. What I wrote in post 119:
Thu May 1, 2014, 06:03 AM
May 2014
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1218126722#post119

"I'll check back tonight or tomorrow morning, and if no one has answered both questions, then I will, and I'll open the answers to the group's criticisms."


Someone answered.

Jim__

(14,155 posts)
199. The only thing I would disagree with is that I don't know that there is any inevitability about ...
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 10:10 PM
Apr 2014

... the process.

The claim is based on an analysis of what currently exists on earth. We know essentially what elements are necessary to form a cell. It appears that the necessary molecules could be formed, over time, in the primordial environment - although the exact path that process followed is not known. It appears to have happened; I don't think anyone can estimate the probability that, given the environment, it would have happened. But, yes, life is essentially a specific set of complex chemical processes.

Similarly for consciousness, it's more than just a sufficient level of complexity. For instance, some plants have an extremely high level of complexity, but they don't appear to be conscious nor do they appear to be on a path to consciousness - i.e. they don't appear to be developing anything like a brain. But, in the case of animals, it does seem that centralized communication networks based on certain cell types did develop and became more specific and more sophisticated in their functioning over time. Animals with complex brains, at least certain types of complex brains, exhibit behaviors that reflect consciousness. And, at least in humans, consciousness includes self-awareness.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
268. Improbability
Sat May 3, 2014, 10:09 AM
May 2014

First, sorry for the delay. "Crappy health" and finals for Spring Term ran smack dab into each other...

As to the probability of abiogenesis happening, let me quote molecular biologist Eugene V. Koonin, writing in the Journal Biology Direct:

"The plausibility of different models for the origin of life on earth directly depends on the adopted cosmological scenario. In an infinite universe (multiverse), emergence of highly complex systems by chance is inevitable."

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1892545/


So, under the correct circumstances, abiogenesis is not improbable (as the Creationists say), nor merely "probable." In an open system, given sufficient time and resources (as exists in an infinite Universe), abiogenesis is an inevitability.

As to consciousness, you seem to making the case that the phenomenon is an extension of neurology, rather than biology. I'm fine with that, but is consciousness relegated to the living? Can a robot, supplied with all the sensory tools needed to hear, taste, touch, smell, and see, endowed with a CPU that approaches the computational power and speed of a complex brain, and operating under the system rules of an advanced AI, achieve consciousness?

Thanks for your patience, we're getting closer to my original goal.

Jim__

(14,155 posts)
270. Sorry to hear that you are having health problems. I hope everything is alright now.
Sat May 3, 2014, 11:54 AM
May 2014

I agree that if the universe has an eternal past, then any event that has a probability greater than 0, has to have happened. A paper came out in 2011 that said the universe cannot have an eternal past - the paper does explicitly consider the case of eternal inflation. An excerpt:

One of the most basic questions in cosmology is whether the universe had a
beginning or has simply existed forever. It was addressed in the singularity
theorems of Penrose and Hawking [1], with the conclusion that the initial sin-
gularity is not avoidable. These theorems rely on the strong energy condition
and on certain assumptions about the global structure of spacetime.

There are, however, three popular scenarios which circumvent these theo-
rems: eternal inflation, a cyclic universe, and an "emergent" universe which
exists for eternity as a static seed before expanding. Here we shall argue that
none of these scenarios can actually be past-eternal.

Inflation violates the strong energy condition, so the singularity theorems
of Penrose and Hawking do not apply. Indeed, quantum fluctuations during
inflation violate even the weak energy condition, so that singularity theorems
assuming only the weak energy condition [2] do not apply either. A more general
incompleteness theorem was proved recently [3] that does not rely on energy
conditions or Einstein's equations. Instead, it states simply that past geodesics
are incomplete provided that the expansion rate averaged along the geodesic is
positive: Hav > 0. This is a much weaker condition, and should certainly apply
to the past of any inflating region of spacetime. Therefore, although inflation
may be eternal in the future, it cannot be extended be extended indefinitely to the past.


I believe that your questions about consciousness are currently unresolved. There definitely appears to be a relationship between a complex brain and consciousness - we don't know of any consciousness outside of organisms with brains. However, no one can explain the emergence of consciousness from complex neural structures, so, no one can limit the possibility of consciousness to organisms with brains. Whether or not AI can lead to conscious machines remains an open question.

I hope you are feeling better.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
273. No need for an eternal past
Sat May 3, 2014, 01:31 PM
May 2014

just a present multiverse, infinite in universal iteration.

Thanks for the good wishes. I had a pulmonary embolism last week and ended up in the hospital. Damn near killed me, and yet...

Jim__

(14,155 posts)
293. OK. I don't believe we have established that life is inevitable.
Sun May 4, 2014, 11:26 AM
May 2014

I think we agree that there are conditions that could exist that would make life in our universe inevitable. We do know that life does exist in our universe; but I don't believe we know yet whether life was inevitable.

I am sorry to hear that your illness was life threatening. I hope that you are past any serious threats.

 

demwing

(16,916 posts)
305. I'm not sure we need to
Mon May 5, 2014, 07:44 AM
May 2014

So talk to me about where you see life falling on the probability scale?

Jim__

(14,155 posts)
309. Given that we are not sure of the path taken to the origin of life on earth ...
Mon May 5, 2014, 12:51 PM
May 2014

... any attempt to assign a probability would be pure speculation. After science defines a viable path, it may be able to assign probabilities. But, I'm not sure that it is just the probability of life that you are interested in; but rather the probability of complex life. In 2010, a paper was published that said the evolution of complex life would probably be extremely rare. Here is an excerpt from an article on that paper:

To become more complex, cells need more genes and more proteins – and so they need to get bigger. As the volume of any object increases, however, its relative surface area falls: an elephant has less surface area per unit of volume than a mouse, for instance. This is a major problem because simple cells generate the energy they need using the membrane that encloses them.

Lane and Martin calculate that if a bacterium grew to the size of a complex cell, it would run out of juice. It might have space for lots of genes, but it would have barely enough energy to make proteins from them.

In theory, there is an easy answer to the energy problem: create lots of folds in the cell membrane to increase its surface area, which in turn will increase the amount of energy the membrane can produce. Indeed, many bacteria have such folds. But this leads to another problem as they get larger.

Producing energy by "burning" food is playing with fire. If the energy-producing machinery straddling the membrane is not constantly fine-tuned, it produces highly reactive molecules that can destroy cells. Yet fine-tuning a larger membrane is problematic because detecting and fixing problems takes longer.


Obviously, I can't say whether or not that paper is correct; but it does raise some thought provoking questions.

Niceguy1

(2,467 posts)
103. when a personis dismissive
Tue Apr 29, 2014, 08:55 PM
Apr 2014

And condescending to those who is religous I immediately tune them out....thier hate contaminates their credibility.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
150. I might make an attempt to challenge and/or educate them as to why this constitutes
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 09:38 AM
Apr 2014

intolerance or bigotry, but I might just tune them out or walk away.

I do the same when I encounter people who clearly have prejudices against people of color or GLBT people.

Their hate contaminates their credibility - very well stated.

 

Flying Squirrel

(3,041 posts)
125. First come up with a definition of "God" that we can all agree upon...
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:17 AM
Apr 2014

Then we can talk about proving or disproving its existence.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
137. Well FS that is impossible..
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:04 AM
Apr 2014

that is why trying to disprove or prove something in not even possible in my opinion.

Kablooie

(18,673 posts)
328. Anyone can tailor the definition of God to fit the outcome they want.
Tue May 6, 2014, 02:47 AM
May 2014

I define God as being the statue of Zeus in my backyard, therefore I can prove God exists by showing it to you.

merrily

(45,251 posts)
127. The fact that no one has proven anything either way does not weigh evenly on both sides.
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 05:29 AM
Apr 2014

No one can prove any negative. It's impossible. So no one can prove that God does not exist and never did.

It is, however, possible to prove someone or something exists or once existed.

I am not saying that God does not exist and never did. I am saying only exactly what I said (a concept that should be self evident, but, for some reason, seems hard for some readers to accept). If anything, I believe more in some higher power of some kind than in nothing. And I tend to refer to that higher power as God.


I don't care what anyone believes or disbelieves, though. I've known some damn fine people of many beliefs and also some damn fine atheistsl

It's when people do things like shun and shame their own child for being gay and maybe cause a teen suicide that I care. And it's not only that issue, but a host of others.

I don't know of any indication that God require any of use to play God. The exception is enforcing the sabbath in Israel, where Jews are supposed to make sure everyone honors the sabbath, including the "stranger" inside the gates.

Other than that, the commandments tell you how to behave. Nowhere else that I know of are you asked, let along deputized, to enforce your view of the Bible on your neighbor, let alone everyone in the U.S. And, in the New Testament, you are directed to stop looking at the alleged misdeeds of others and work on perfecting yourself.

The current meme is that God needs humans to work on earth because he has no way of so doing. Really? You think he's an ominipotent God and also think he can't do anything on earth without your help? No one can prove any negative. It's impossible. If he wanted or expected your help, your Bible would say so. You're not God's right hand man or woman on earth. Indeed that belief would be hubris. Get over yourself. For the love of God, get over yourself.

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
135. I guess you are talking to me..
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:03 AM
Apr 2014

the thread is getting a little long, and I am not sure who is responding to who now.. so

"The current meme is that God needs humans to work on earth because he has no way of so doing. Really? You think he's an ominipotent God and also think he can't do anything on earth without your help? No one can prove any negative. It's impossible. If he wanted or expected your help, your Bible would say so. You're not God's right hand man or woman on earth. Indeed that belief would be hubris. Get over yourself. For the love of God, get over yourself."

Never said I was anyone's right hand person.. (I am a woman by the way).. what I said is, there is no way to disprove or prove so berating someone for their beliefs in that matter in pointless..

My op

"Being dismissive of others walk in life in futile.. is an exercise in stroking ones own ego.

No point to yelling, no point to calling others names, and accusing them of being delusional.

You or I or the guy or gal typing the next message cannot prove or disprove the existence of God.

It is your own personal belief system

merrily

(45,251 posts)
138. I responded with my general thoughts on the OP, but I was not
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:23 AM
Apr 2014

necessarily aiming them at you or disagreeing with you. I certainly was not telling you to get over yourself.

I thought my post was pretty clear about what behavior I was objecting to, not a religious belief as such, but invoking God to hurt and browbeat others, maybe even driving your own teen to suicide.

If that description does not fit you then my comments on people who engage in that behavior were not aimed at you.

 

stone space

(6,498 posts)
271. Actually, this is not true. I prove so-called "negatives" all the time.
Sat May 3, 2014, 12:44 PM
May 2014
No one can prove any negative. It's impossible.


As near as I can tell from how the word is used in practice, a "negative" is the negation of an existential statement, that is (in Classical Logic, anyway), a "negative" seems to refer to a universial statement.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
272. There is not a full-sized elephant in my pocket.
Sat May 3, 2014, 01:28 PM
May 2014

Ta-da, I just proved a negative. (Anyone can look at me and clearly not see an elephant in my pocket.

AtheistCrusader

(33,982 posts)
274. People prove negatives all the time.
Sat May 3, 2014, 01:32 PM
May 2014

Also, hilariously paradoxical.


"No one can prove any negative. It's impossible."

You are, right there, stating a negative as an absolute claim.
It's as much of a paradox as 'there are no absolutes'. A claim that is wrong one of two ways; if it is true, it's an absolute, and thus paradoxically wrong. If it's false, then it doesn't support the speaker's position after all.

Your statement is similarly flawed.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
204. "Act of Reparation?" notes that if you can't prove God ... then believers are wrong too.
Thu May 1, 2014, 09:04 AM
May 2014

When believers assert strongly that God exists, they are wrong; they are asserting something improvable.

Looks like this is a double-edged sword

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
215. Now worded a little more unequivocally though: firm believers in God are simply wrong
Thu May 1, 2014, 10:03 AM
May 2014

If no one can say whether God exists, or not? Then we might need to make this clear for some: it is not just 1) atheists who are wrong for saying anything definitive against God; 2) also believers who firmly assert God exists. They are also wrong.

Yes, most people will see the double-edged side of this "no one knows" argument. But we might need first of all to spell it out, for some: this argument does not just work against atheists. It works against firm believers as well.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
218. Firm disbelievers are equally wrong.
Thu May 1, 2014, 10:09 AM
May 2014

So what? Since it can't be resolved, let's just put it aside and agree that everyone holds a different POV on this unanswerable question.

This argument works against no one but "antis". There is really no need to spell it out further.

Brettongarcia

(2,262 posts)
237. But 1) many people here object to the premise: that God cannot be proved, or disproved.
Fri May 2, 2014, 08:44 AM
May 2014

There are many things that are said about gods that seem easy to disprove; like promises of giant miracles whenever we ask for them. Here we can simply ask for a miracle ... and quickly see they don't show up as regularly as advertised. Or consider a God who is promised to appear visibly before us every day - but we don't see him in our lives today. To the extent that any given god is identified with or composed of such disprovable attributes, that god might be said to be "disproven" if those attributes are obviously false.

The 2) other problem might be that there seems to be some kind of subtle squeeze play here against anti-theists.

It is often said on this blog that "a-theism" just means not necessarily disbelieving in God; just expressing no interest. This position is said in some circles to be better than "anti-theism"; actively saying there is no God.

3) We've had a fair discussion based on simply assuming the premise.

4) However? We should not let it slip by or forget that the premise itself is ... suspect. It produces a sort of bias or invisible limitation in the discussion.

In that way, this allegedly "objective" or neutral discussion is actually subtly manipulative and prejudicial.

 

phil89

(1,043 posts)
352. Atheism doesn't claim there is no god
Tue May 6, 2014, 07:19 PM
May 2014

only that the case has not been made due to there not being enough evidence to prove a god claim. Two completely different things.

DrewFlorida

(1,096 posts)
195. You also cannot disprove the existence of god in the form of a monkey, or in the form of a pig, or
Wed Apr 30, 2014, 05:02 PM
Apr 2014

a tree. You also cannot disprove the existence of fifty gods at odds with each other, or any other cockamamie ego driven belief. Quite simply, a belief is nothing more and nothing less than a belief. No proof is asked and no proof is needed.
However; one thing which can justify dismissiveness of other people's beliefs, is when their behaviors are not inline with their stated beliefs. When a person's behaviors do not align with their stated beliefs, that person is a fraud, a con-artist, a liar, and a fool. This is the case with almost every Christian I have ever met, and therefore, my dismissiveness of them is justified and appropriate!

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
206. Interesting..ahhh..
Thu May 1, 2014, 09:12 AM
May 2014

there you go.. that sort of ends the discussion, because everyone who does not agree with you is a liar, fraud, con-artist and a fool.

I will not be dismissive of you though, because you make an excellent point.. most people who claim to be Christians are not.. I do my best to attempt to be one.. but it does not always work.. but I keep trying..

el_bryanto

(11,804 posts)
205. Maybe it has appeal based on what people would like to believe
Thu May 1, 2014, 09:07 AM
May 2014

rather than how things really are. Some people would like to believe that tolerance and mutual understanding between believers and atheists is a good and noble goal; they don't realize how pointless it is to attempt that.

Bryant

Peacetrain

(22,989 posts)
208. Do we ignore each other?
Thu May 1, 2014, 09:18 AM
May 2014

Do we live in separate communities and refuse to associate with one another?. Do we force our own belief system on another to make them walk in lock step with us?


I can only speak for myself.. and you can only speak for yourself Bryant.. is everything we say so colored by our beliefs systems that we cannot tolerate one another?




el_bryanto

(11,804 posts)
209. You have to look at it from an Atheist point of view - or the point of view of some Atheists
Thu May 1, 2014, 09:26 AM
May 2014

at any rate. In their opinion belief/religious practice is something that is causing long term problems in our democracy, as religionists try and impose their religious beliefs on the rest of society.

Religion is also unnecessary - all of the advantages that believers receive from religion could be received in other ways. They could be received from secular sources