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wcoltd
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17 Jul 2011, 6:46 pm

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Which is true of many forms of ideology, theistic or atheistic.


Yes people kill eachother for other reasons, such as nationalism - which I find to be equally - if not more - wasteful and destructive.

However these things are not athiestic. I have never heard of an instance of someone killing someone else in the name of athiesm.

In WWII
I don't think it is correct to call it "athiestic" (if that's what you meant). They didn't kill eachother in the name of atheism, they killed eachother in the name of their countries or their leaders.



kladky
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17 Jul 2011, 10:29 pm

wcoltd wrote:
In order to disprove the existence of god you have to give us some criteria for which to undertake some kind of test. For instance take the most holy figure - say the pope - and throw him out of an airplane without a parachute. Surely if god did exist he wouldn't let his followers be disgraced. Unfortunately many christian followers (including the pope himself) don't have enough faith in god to agree to perform this kind of experiment.


God does not promise protection to anyone who claims to be his follower and does some foolhardy act. If the pope jumped out of a plane saying God would protect him because he's the pope, he would die. This would not prove or disprove the existence of God. It would only serve to make the pope look quite foolish.

In the Bible, there are examples of people who were spared death by God. However, at Matthew chapter 4, the Devil tells Jesus to throw himself off the temple, even quoting Scripture that said God would not let him die. Jesus replied that we should not test God. What this tells me is that, if God wants to save me from a fall out of a plane, I will survive it. This doesn't mean I should throw myself out of a plane to prove the point.

Now, if a test is what you require, consider this. It was recently discovered in the past decade that there are, indeed, black holes in space. Before this, no one could say for sure. The equipment did not exist with which to observe and study such a phenomenon. In fact, this idea has existed since the late 1700's, but was largely ignored for over a century, since no one, until Einstein came along, could explain such a thing. It is possible for something to exist without us being able to test for it, isn't it?

Furthermore, though you may have heard this before, consider computers. If I told you my computer was not built, but simply appeared on my desk one day, possibly after failed attempts, what would you think? And yet an atheist will look at the human brain and say that no one created it.



kladky
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17 Jul 2011, 10:32 pm

DiabloDave363 wrote:
Im what you call a "Naturalist". And I'd love to have a nice convo with you. I always prefer discussions rather than arguments because frankly, in a world with 7 billion different people with 7 billion different minds thinking in 7 billion different ways, it would be foolish to be overly concerned with having someone think the exact same way as you. I like that people have different opinions and world views since I can learn and think more from discussing with them.

But to answer your question, non-religious people are among the least-trusted and most hated in the world. So they (and even I in the past) get defensive because of the intolerance. But I don't care to "deconvert" someone because frankly, knowing that one less person believes in god isnt going to make me sleep better at night.


A Naturalist. Forgive me, but do you mean you worship nature, as in a pagan?

At any rate, I am not intolerant of anyone. Much of my family are agnostic or atheist. I even have a family member who was a Satanist at one point. I don't hate anyone for not believing in God. I can see why someone wouldn't. I'm only trying to help others see what I see, as improbable as they may seem at times.



kladky
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17 Jul 2011, 10:33 pm

JohnOldman wrote:
wcoltd wrote:
Religion has lead to many atrocities. People kill eachother in the name of religion.


Which is true of many forms of ideology, theistic or atheistic.

As an atheist and former devout Christian I'm not wont to ridicule religion. It actually makes me a little sad that people impose such beliefs on themselves in order to find meaning.


May I ask what caused you to lose faith in Christianity? Do you feel you have meaning without it?



Philologos
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17 Jul 2011, 10:40 pm

JohnOldman wrote:
wcoltd wrote:
Religion has lead to many atrocities. People kill eachother in the name of religion.


Which is true of many forms of ideology, theistic or atheistic.

As an atheist and former devout Christian I'm not wont to ridicule religion. It actually makes me a little sad that people impose such beliefs on themselves in order to find meaning.


Very similar except I went the other direction. However, as an atheist I sometimes envied people the limited intelligence [my idea, I have to confess] that let them find meaning and comnfort not available to intelligent people like me.



CrinklyCrustacean
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18 Jul 2011, 2:29 am

kladky wrote:
Now, if a test is what you require, consider this. It was recently discovered in the past decade that there are, indeed, black holes in space. Before this, no one could say for sure. The equipment did not exist with which to observe and study such a phenomenon. In fact, this idea has existed since the late 1700's, but was largely ignored for over a century, since no one, until Einstein came along, could explain such a thing. It is possible for something to exist without us being able to test for it, isn't it?

Consider the discovery of Cygnus X-1. A radiotelescope saw a burst of x-rays. Then the scientists turned their optical telescopes onto that area and found there was nothing visible. However, they did discover that there was what looked like a binary star system with a star orbiting around an invisible object, and furthermore, this object was pulling gas off the visible star. Then they worked out the mass of the invisible object. Then they realised that this invisible object was a prime candidate to be a black hole, because even though all this hot visible gas was being pulled off the star, it wasn't lighting anything up. Further, they realised that the mass of the object was way beyond the minimum mass for creating a black hole, as far as their theories were at the time. Thus, Cygnus X-1 became a widely accepted candidate for an actual black hole. The point is that although they may not have had the tools right away to fully investigate Cygnus X-1, there was enough scientifically documented and testable evidence to suggest that something funny was going on which warranted further investigation.

With God, the argument becomes a lot more tricky because there is a huge amount of evidence explaining how things developed without a God being required. You chose the human brain. There are animals with more primitive brains than ours. What probably happened is that some genetic fluke produced a brain which was slightly better and provided an evolutionary advantage. Over time more of these strange brains developed, and then those with strange brains mated with each other. Then the next advantageous fluke occurred, and the process continued until it resulted in humans with their current brain configuration. It's not a case of the brain suddenly appearing in its current form after a string of total failures, but rather a series of improvements which worked well enough for the species to survive and develop between improvements. That, at least, is a far more plausible explanation than that God created man's brain in its present state in one clean go.



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18 Jul 2011, 12:25 pm

kladky wrote:
DiabloDave363 wrote:
Im what you call a "Naturalist". And I'd love to have a nice convo with you. I always prefer discussions rather than arguments because frankly, in a world with 7 billion different people with 7 billion different minds thinking in 7 billion different ways, it would be foolish to be overly concerned with having someone think the exact same way as you. I like that people have different opinions and world views since I can learn and think more from discussing with them.

But to answer your question, non-religious people are among the least-trusted and most hated in the world. So they (and even I in the past) get defensive because of the intolerance. But I don't care to "deconvert" someone because frankly, knowing that one less person believes in god isnt going to make me sleep better at night.


A Naturalist. Forgive me, but do you mean you worship nature, as in a pagan?

At any rate, I am not intolerant of anyone. Much of my family are agnostic or atheist. I even have a family member who was a Satanist at one point. I don't hate anyone for not believing in God. I can see why someone wouldn't. I'm only trying to help others see what I see, as improbable as they may seem at times.

I'd guess that he simply means that there are no such things as supernatural entities. "Naturalism" is a philosophical term that has a meaning very similar to "physicalism" and "materialism", just the terms are slightly different, but in practice interchangeable so long as one isn't using any of these terms in an overly analytic manner.



Dragonkisse
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20 Jul 2011, 1:07 am

I am not an atheist or religous but I believe in psychics and mediums. I don't beleive in nutters. That is usually a defense mechanism abusers use towards their victims.