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Thread: disproving religion

  1. #1 disproving religion 
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    i was wondering, if there are so much evidence disproving religion, then why are there still people who believe in it?


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    http://www.religiouscartoons.net/dis...album=4&pos=10
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    i think all agnostics, athiests, and some non denominationals have wondered that question.

    i think it largely comes from indoctrination at a young age. i remember in my personal experience that i was brought to church since the age of 2. i learned very simple explanations of the history of the world. and i was taught to accept such simple explanations as fact "because the good book says it".

    my mother wasn't trying to indoctrinate me, it was what she was taught. successful religions always have practices which favor the passing on of their beliefs through multiple means, indoctrination of children, teaching of parents that they should bring children to church, converting the weak minded or unsure.

    peculiarly this seems to follow the model of natural selection as religions possess all of the requirements to be subject to natural selection:

    they reproduce new generations of religious beliefs by teaching children, and these children's beliefs reflect those of the parent generation's

    they are subject to variation(new generations will tend to have doubts about some aspects and have new views in some areas).

    and the variations presented can have an impact on the ability of a religion to produce more new members in the next generation, for example the christian belief that they are saving the souls of people that they convert, and that the lives of the unconverted are worth less because their souls are not immortal. such a belief aided in the crusades and colonization of america by christianity. they had no issue killing non christians(reducing the competition) and using shock tactics to convert(see the slavery of the pueblo indians).


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    haha, evolution of religions. sounds slightly contradicting. this makes me think of one picture i have seen on the internet describing the difference between the scientific method and faith. here it is just for laughs.

    http://www.religiouscartoons.net/dis...album=4&pos=10
    "I don't know what weapons will be used in World War Three, but World war four will be fought with sticks and stones."
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    http://www.religiouscartoons.net/dis...album=4&pos=10
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    From a philosophical point of view, if we are only considering the general idea of a supernatural diety, science would be inherently unable to refute the concept as science is limited to the confines of the natural universe.

    This isn't necessarily an endorsement of any particular religion, just something to think about. As Aristotle said, "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."
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    It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    This is going in my sig.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle

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    test0024565 said


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    this was a link to an advertisment. Does TSF allow that now???[/list]
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    mobc said:

    if there are so much evidence disproving religion
    What is some of this evidence? What is any of this evidence? What evidence?

    The reason is that the "evidence" is not conclusive enough to convince everybody toward one side of the issue. What we have is a lot of infomation which some people see one way and other people see another way. But since the majority of people are religious, why do there remain people who are not religious?
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    because many people are indoctrinated since birth and don't actually rely on the evidence. perhaps not all religions are disproved by science(an ancient religion would have to be incredibly vague to not have a lot of scientific evidence dashing its creation story) but many old and new religions' core views as well as less important doctrines have been thuroughly debunked by science and societal changes.

    the only people who aren't indoctrinated towards one religion or another are people with very secular or atheist parents. even my own family who was quite secular still convinced me of the existence of something for which i had seen no physical evidence(can't see it, hear it, feel it[physically], smell it, or taste it) by the time i was three.
    physics: accurate, objective, boring
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    religion: accurate if people are always right, highly subjective, bewildering
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    saul sed:

    because many people are indoctrinated since birth and don't actually rely on the evidence
    I do not see where that indoctrination is any worse that the indoctrination of Richard Dawkins which you are quoting here. You seem only to have replaced one indoctrination with a different one which you like better.

    As I have point out here time after time after time, statistics show that a huge percentage (60-90 percent depending on the denomination) of youth brought up in (Christian) churches leave the church when they reach the age of majority and strike out on their own. This would not seem to be a successful indoctrination.

    We it not for the fact that they spend the next 10 to 20 years experiencing the emptiness of the spiritless life, our churches today would be empty.

    Their evidence is not something they can see and measure and touch. It is something they can feel in their heart and not explain in their brain.

    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above. Seldom is it REALLY because of a lack of evidence.

    I was brought up in a secular home and was not "indoctrinated" by a churchy family. I was 35 when I "saw the light" which I think is about the same age that Saul of Tarsus became Paul the Apostle. Interesting, you have chosen his name as yours, saul. How long before you will be 35, saul?
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    In the UK one can not legally drink alcohol until reaching the age of 18, perhaps this should be the age when people are allowed to read religious material, thus avoiding indoctrination before one has had the chance to see what the world is about. Simple ? who knows.
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  13. #12  
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    Dave Wilson wrote:
    In the UK one can not legally drink alcohol until reaching the age of 18, perhaps this should be the age when people are allowed to read religious material, thus avoiding indoctrination before one has had the chance to see what the world is about. Simple ? who knows.
    I suppose if we are not going to allow parents to "indoctrinate" their children with religious concepts until after they are 18, perhaps we should also not allow them to set the example of drinking alcohol until after their children have reached the age of 18.

    I have a sneaking hunch that alcoholism causes more problems in the UK than does the practice of going to church. So -- would you rather your over 18 children were spending Sunday mornings at chruch or puking in the loo due to a severe hangover after a night quaffing pints at the local pub?
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    saul sed:

    because many people are indoctrinated since birth and don't actually rely on the evidence
    I do not see where that indoctrination is any worse that the indoctrination of Richard Dawkins which you are quoting here. You seem only to have replaced one indoctrination with a different one which you like better.
    Dawkins doesn't tell wicked stories of destroying the planet except for a few pairs of animals, mythical hero's constantly tested and rewarded in any amazing string of tails meant to titillate and amaze the unassuming. Dawkin's doesn't refuse to consider intellegent questions that come with the development of reasoning. Dawkins doesn't wrap his perspective on the world in moral judgments that will follow you after you die to either be rewarded or share an eternity of torment in hell or a lifetime of guilt. Most importantly Dawkin's introspection, questions and conclusions based on objective evidence while traditional religious perspective applauds acceptance based on absolutely no evidence at all under the guise of Faith.

    In reality there's very little comparison between the two.
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    Definitely indoctrinated.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Dave Wilson wrote:
    In the UK one can not legally drink alcohol until reaching the age of 18, perhaps this should be the age when people are allowed to read religious material, thus avoiding indoctrination before one has had the chance to see what the world is about. Simple ? who knows.
    I suppose if we are not going to allow parents to "indoctrinate" their children with religious concepts until after they are 18, perhaps we should also not allow them to set the example of drinking alcohol until after their children have reached the age of 18.

    I have a sneaking hunch that alcoholism causes more problems in the UK than does the practice of going to church. So -- would you rather your over 18 children were spending Sunday mornings at chruch or puking in the loo due to a severe hangover after a night quaffing pints at the local pub?
    If you have a look at the history of Northern Ireland and other areas of the UK where sectarianism is rife, alcoholism and the practice of going to church go hand in hand. That said, I just do not see the point of imposing religious irrationality on young children. You would not hand a five year old a pint of ale, would you ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wilson
    You would not hand a five year old a pint of ale, would you ?
    Absolutely not. The little bastards never have enough money to pay for it.
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    The idea that the struggle is Northern Ireland is due to the fact that some people are Catholic and some people are Protestant is a myth that anti-religious people enjoy fomenting.

    The thing is that the Catholic residents are generally "native" Irish, while the Protestants are "conquering" English and Scots. It would not make any difference among them even if they were all atheists -- the Irish would still not like the presense and domination of the British invaders.

    The conflict is political not religious. Religion merely provides a line of differentiation.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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  19. #18 Re: disproving religion 
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    Quote Originally Posted by mobc
    i was wondering, if there are so much evidence disproving religion, then why are there still people who believe in it?
    Do people acknowledge a flurorescent green flamingo if it is their only source of food and happiness? And if not believing in that flamingo meant not giving them food and happiness?

    Also human ignorance. People can believe in what they can't see, but if it's right in front of them, NO can't see it.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    Quantime said:
    Do people acknowledge a flurorescent green flamingo if it is their only source of food and happiness? And if not believing in that flamingo meant not giving them food and happiness?
    The stupidity of this analogy is exceeded only by its total irrelevance.

    You are comparing the belief in a supposed physical object, the fluorescent green flamingo which should be easily discernable in the physical world, with a belief in a non physical being who is NOT easily discernable in the physical world.

    It appears you are saying that because a physical fluorescent flamingo is non-existent, then God is non-existent. What is worse, I doubt you even see the illogic and silliness of such an argument.

    This is typical of the "evidence" presented by atheists of the non-existence of God. No one has stepped forward with any of the "so much evidence disproving religion" that the OP claims.

    The claim of lack of evidence for religion is nothing more than a justificationary excuse. As I said before:

    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above. Seldom is it REALLY because of a lack of evidence.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Quantime said:
    Do people acknowledge a flurorescent green flamingo if it is their only source of food and happiness? And if not believing in that flamingo meant not giving them food and happiness?
    The stupidity of this analogy is exceeded only by its total irrelevance.

    You are comparing the belief in a supposed physical object, the fluorescent green flamingo which should be easily discernable in the physical world, with a belief in a non physical being who is NOT easily discernable in the physical world.

    It appears you are saying that because a physical fluorescent flamingo is non-existent, then God is non-existent. What is worse, I doubt you even see the illogic and silliness of such an argument.

    This is typical of the "evidence" presented by atheists of the non-existence of God. No one has stepped forward with any of the "so much evidence disproving religion" that the OP claims.

    The claim of lack of evidence for religion is nothing more than a justificationary excuse. As I said before:

    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above. Seldom is it REALLY because of a lack of evidence.
    there is simple logic to disprove god. we observe through scientific inquiry that our universe is governed by physical laws. we know that science "works" at describing the world because it meets our standards, namely that it produces testable theories which can be disproven and attempt to explain the natural world, and also it has applications. we are confident that there is a force of gravity because it explains the world of large bodies with extreme accuracy and precision, meaning that the world follows what it predicts very closely, and with few outliers. we also have confidence in it because we can use the predictions of gravity to know what will happen in cases involving gravity, and can use this knowledge to produce value in the real world (hydro-electric dams use our knowledge of gravity's effects on a body of water to predict how much energy we can gain from it).

    religion on the other hand says that our world is not governed by these physical laws. without fail all religions say that a god or multiple gods have jumped from the land of "i'm an invisible god" into the physical world to screw around with things, give us moral codes, and smite the wicked. one cannot disprove a god who's worshipers say that it simply created the world and let it go, because it is completely untestable. one can however test a god who's believers claim that it interferes with the real world. what is this magical test to give a clear and consice reason not to believe in god? it's the physical world, we don't see god, we don't hear god, we don't feel god(physically), and we don't smell or taste god. we don't observe any of the actions that religions say their gods have taken. so, this theory about an invisible being jumping in and out of our universe to change us in various ways doesn't stand up to either of the tests that logic places on a theory. it does not explain natural phenomena better than another theory, it cannot predict events that we can observe, and it does not provide real value to the world.

    religion certainly has an effect on the world, it helps societies to behave in ways that help it to function well. it helps organize groups of people so that they can assist each other in times of need. as you have pointed out it helps people avoid "the emptiness of a spiritless life". but religion does not help us to actually produce anything, it just helps us to decide how we distribute what we produce through means that pass the tests of explaining the physical world, predicting observable events, and providing value.
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    Dayton, when you don't refer to me as stupid we can have a discussion. My analogy was a metaphorical simplification of the ideology of religion... what it stands for for most people. A lot of people find solace and comfort, help and guidance in religion and that is the reason they continue to believe in God despite the 'evidence' that crops up over the years against it.

    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above. Seldom is it REALLY because of a lack of evidence.
    So you're saying atheists choose to be atheist because of ignorance so that they can 'sin' and do what they want?

    Taking drugs is ok, in moderation.
    Homosexual sex is ok.
    Drink alcohol to excess is ok, in moderation.
    Lie, cheating and stealing are ways of getting by some time. Don't tell me religious institutions haven't been doing that since they told people God was watching them masturbate every night.

    Answer me this, why would an all omnipotent, all knowing, wise, loving god not let his children go up into the mountains, brashly, against all advice and learn from their own mistakes? What God would not let his children get lost and what god would deny human nature? If after all he was the one that gave us that nature?

    God, I don't know. Maybe he exists maybe he doesn't. But religion? Horseshit.
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    saul said:

    there is simple logic to disprove god. we observe through scientific inquiry that our universe is governed by physical laws. we know that science "works" at describing the world because it meets our standards, namely that it produces testable theories which can be disproven and attempt to explain the natural world, and also it has applications. we are confident that there is a force of gravity because it explains the world of large bodies with extreme accuracy and precision, meaning that the world follows what it predicts very closely, and with few outliers. we also have confidence in it because we can use the predictions of gravity to know what will happen in cases involving gravity, and can use this knowledge to produce value in the real world (hydro-electric dams use our knowledge of gravity's effects on a body of water to predict how much energy we can gain from it).
    None of which has anything to do with religion. Can you prove that God did not set up the laws of physics? The fact that ancient people did not understand these things does not prove anything. People did not lack understanding because of religion, but because they lacked the knowledge and experience to understand them regardless of whatever else they may have believe. They were at least smart enough to understand there were forces in action that they could not explain.

    saul says:

    religion on the other hand says that our world is not governed by these physical laws.
    Where do you pick up an insanely stupid idea such as that? This is just an absolute bald face misrepresentation of what religious (Christian) people believe. The only area in which religious (Christian) people might disagree with science on these things is in the causative of why and how they came be. To suggest that religious people (at least Judeo-Christian religions) do not understand and believe in gravity is just a plain ignorant statement, which most of the atheists on this forum would not even consider making.

    Your entire view of religion is so jaded with mis-information, dis-information and just plain lack of any reasonable basis of knowledge, that discussion is impossible.
    What are you, a sophomore in high school?

    Quantime said:
    Dayton, when you don't refer to me as stupid we can have a discussion.
    I did not say that YOU were stupid, I said the idea which you expressed was stupid. Even very intelligent people can have stupid ideas -- look at congress.

    Your metaphor mixes apples and orangutangs. It does not appear to me that either you or saul have any idea what Christians (who you are actually referring to when you say religious) believe or how their relationship with God works. You seem only to know what Dawkins, in his jaded, perverted view of religion, says it is and he doesn't know anything about what Christianity is about either. It is like the the blind leading others into blindness.

    Quantime said:

    So you're saying atheists choose to be atheist because of ignorance so that they can 'sin' and do what they want?
    No, I'm saying just the opposite. They choose to be atheist because they know the difference between right and wrong and choose to do what they want even knowing it is wrong, thinking this absolves them from any responsibility before God for doing wrong.

    quantime added:


    Taking drugs is ok, in moderation.
    Homosexual sex is ok.
    Drink alcohol to excess is ok, in moderation.
    Lie, cheating and stealing are ways of getting by some time. Don't tell me religious institutions haven't been doing that since they told people God was watching them masturbate every night.
    So are you saying that drug addiction, alcholism and homosexual relationships are productive ways of life? And can you figure out ahead of time which people whose intent is to use mind altering substances will be become addicted to them. Meth is virtully impossible not to become addicted to and it is horribly destructive. Drugs are like playing Russian roulette. Some are not hurt, but some are.

    I cannot say that religious people are not involved in these kinds of activities. But there is a difference in repenting of improper actions and doing them in defiance of authority. If you are in court before a judge for speeding which is going to be the better approach with the judge -- "I did it and I am glad I did it," or "I'm sorry and I will try not to speed again?"

    That's the difference in people doing these things in difiance of God and people doing them and telling God their sorry and they will try to do better.

    Quantime asked:
    Answer me this, why would an all omnipotent, all knowing, wise, loving god not let his children go up into the mountains, brashly, against all advice and learn from their own mistakes? What God would not let his children get lost and what god would deny human nature? If after all he was the one that gave us that nature?
    He does allow us to make our own mistakes, get lost and respond to human nature. And perhaps when you have children and they do things which you caution them not to do and they get hurt because they did them, you will know how God feels when we do that.

    I can cut you guys some slack, though. A recent Pew poll showed that atheist, in general, know more about the Bible than main stream Christians.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wilson
    You would not hand a five year old a pint of ale, would you ?
    Absolutely not. The little bastards never have enough money to pay for it.
    Yes, I should have thought of that. Very good comment, I nearly choked on my cup of tea reading it.
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    Religion is not necessarily theistic.

    Buddhism is agnostic, in the sense the existence of god(s) or otherwise is irrelevant to the human condition.
    The mark of a moderate man is freedom from his own ideas - Tao Te Ching

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Quantime said:
    Dayton, when you don't refer to me as stupid we can have a discussion.
    I did not say that YOU were stupid, I said the idea which you expressed was stupid. Even very intelligent people can have stupid ideas -- look at congress.

    Your metaphor mixes apples and orangutangs. It does not appear to me that either you or saul have any idea what Christians (who you are actually referring to when you say religious) believe or how their relationship with God works.
    Wrong I refer to all religious institutions and doctrine, and then their effect on people. I'm not sure there is such a thing as a relationship with God, and if you tried to explain it scientifically, well I'm not sure it would gel well.

    You seem only to know what Dawkins, in his jaded, perverted view of religion, says it is and he doesn't know anything about what Christianity is about either. It is like the the blind leading others into blindness.
    Religion and perversion seem to go hand in hand don't they? I fail to recognise how religion has any long term positive effect on the human race, and it is blatently obvious why religion exists; history tells us all we need to know about the effect religion has and the fear it installs in people.

    Quantime said:

    So you're saying atheists choose to be atheist because of ignorance so that they can 'sin' and do what they want?
    No, I'm saying just the opposite. They choose to be atheist because they know the difference between right and wrong and choose to do what they want even knowing it is wrong, thinking this absolves them from any responsibility before God for doing wrong.
    So you're saying that atheists know what is right and wrong and choose to be ignorant even though they know what is wrong, therefore there are no consequences because there is no overlord reprimanding them for it?

    Pardon my cynicism, but right and wrong are subjective, vagaries of perception attributed to peoples own individualised experiences. One mans right is another's wrong and vice versa. There are universal 'rights and wrongs' of course, but they only fit into out culture, as a whole.

    I think its wrong to teach children religion without giving them the option of science at the same time, letting them decide from themselves in time (if they even really care). Personally I think its appauling that we are teaching our children lies and deceit professing it as truth and that they will be punished if they disagree or do not believe.

    If that is a relationship with God, its one I'd rather not subject to my children.



    quantime added:


    Taking drugs is ok, in moderation.
    Homosexual sex is ok.
    Drink alcohol to excess is ok, in moderation.
    Lie, cheating and stealing are ways of getting by some time. Don't tell me religious institutions haven't been doing that since they told people God was watching them masturbate every night.
    So are you saying that drug addiction, alcholism and homosexual relationships are productive ways of life?
    I don't think drug addicts take drugs in moderation, and I don't think that Mrs Mop in the old folks home has an addiction with blood pressure tablets. Alcohol is enjoyable in moderation, personally I'm not a big fan, yet now and again I will drink plenty of different wines, spirits and beers; they are the results of fruits of the earth. God forbid one fruit so why would he forbid another knowing we'd disobey him anyway?

    As for homosexuality, sexuality itself, hetero or homo, should not be about 'productivity of life', it's about the union of two people, two souls that are alike, that share similar passions, similar hopes, dreams and sufferings. For that moment when they join together in intimiate bliss, it isn't about being productive, its about enjoying each other and experiencing the joy of humanity.... be it with the opposite sex, the same sex or both, even at the same time.

    Live and let live (or die), what God, what right has any creature omnipotent or not have to tell another living creature how to live? What to do? If I were to have children I would keep them disciplined and aware of the world but I wouldn't start fighting their nature and telling them to not be human.


    And can you figure out ahead of time which people whose intent is to use mind altering substances will be become addicted to them. Meth is virtully impossible not to become addicted to and it is horribly destructive. Drugs are like playing Russian roulette. Some are not hurt, but some are.
    Drug addiction is one in the same with religion. I hope you can mirror your faith with such a drug, because I should know. I've been deep in Christian doctrine, deep within the mantras, the memes and everything else. Just check out my older posts of my fanatical devotion to the faith of God and the church, if anything that is evident how dangerous religion can be in the wrong hands. Like drugs, religion is an addiction, albeit a manipulative one with a mind of its own.

    I cannot say that religious people are not involved in these kinds of activities. But there is a difference in repenting of improper actions and doing them in defiance of authority. If you are in court before a judge for speeding which is going to be the better approach with the judge -- "I did it and I am glad I did it," or "I'm sorry and I will try not to speed again?"
    Proud to say I did it. I have the guts to admit I am proud of doing it. If I am guilty and have no chance of reprimanding myself then I fully am proud of my actions, with no regrets. I had the balls to stand up against religion for myself, to save my mind, to save myself. So just look at that, now a once believer in Jesus will be sent to hell, no redemption for me... so I will stand in front of that judge and say I was proud to do something for myself, to help myself, to not be bound by rules and regulations, by borders and boundaries, where I set myself free... and if I am to be incacerated for that freedom, then you tell me who shall be judged.

    That's the difference in people doing these things in difiance of God and people doing them and telling God their sorry and they will try to do better.
    Who would take drugs, be a homosexual or binge drink for the sake of 'showing god' who's who? Sounds a bit like a rebellious teenager if you ask me. Who would purposfully act in defiance against God? What about those who say they will try to do better? Would you honestly take a serial criminal serious if he kept saying that? Human beings are flawed, weak creatues and the only way we evolved and survived was because of our sheer determination to survive, to fight the odds of the elements and to rise up with an insurrection against the very cruelties that the earth has to throw at us. As I said, we are flawed and no God, deity, devil, demon, religious institute, random preacher has the right to say what are the rules and reprimand those who do not obey those rules.

    Quantime asked:
    Answer me this, why would an all omnipotent, all knowing, wise, loving god not let his children go up into the mountains, brashly, against all advice and learn from their own mistakes? What God would not let his children get lost and what god would deny human nature? If after all he was the one that gave us that nature?
    He does allow us to make our own mistakes, get lost and respond to human nature. And perhaps when you have children and they do things which you caution them not to do and they get hurt because they did them, you will know how God feels when we do that.
    I actually did a lot as a child to please my parents and peers, I always did as I was told... and guess what happened dayton? I was a failure, with no purpose, no drive, no direction and no life and it lead me into a deep pit of despair and depression that still clings to my heels even to this day. I'd rather my child go out and hurt himself and form a hardend skin against the elements of the world. Because I know from my own experience that suffering because of doing everything you were told to do, and suffering because of disobeying, then the suffering of doing what you were told to do is far worse, weak and pitiful.... the weak do not surivive ...

    and guess what? The religious institutions then say that being weak will reward you when your dead, whilst at the same time they get fat rewards from your weakness. Where are all the men and women that made religion? That made those rules? For nearly two thousand years they've sat in gold churches laiden with diamonds and jewels, and guess what? They belong to every poor bastard that ever did as he/she was told.

    I can cut you guys some slack, though. A recent Pew poll showed that atheists, in general, know more about the Bible than main stream Christians.
    It's got some good advice in it; it's a shame not many religious folk I've met truly listen to it. I'd still rather learn for myself.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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  27. #26  
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    saul said:

    there is simple logic to disprove god. we observe through scientific inquiry that our universe is governed by physical laws. we know that science "works" at describing the world because it meets our standards, namely that it produces testable theories which can be disproven and attempt to explain the natural world, and also it has applications. we are confident that there is a force of gravity because it explains the world of large bodies with extreme accuracy and precision, meaning that the world follows what it predicts very closely, and with few outliers. we also have confidence in it because we can use the predictions of gravity to know what will happen in cases involving gravity, and can use this knowledge to produce value in the real world (hydro-electric dams use our knowledge of gravity's effects on a body of water to predict how much energy we can gain from it).
    None of which has anything to do with religion. Can you prove that God did not set up the laws of physics? The fact that ancient people did not understand these things does not prove anything. People did not lack understanding because of religion, but because they lacked the knowledge and experience to understand them regardless of whatever else they may have believe. They were at least smart enough to understand there were forces in action that they could not explain.

    saul says:

    religion on the other hand says that our world is not governed by these physical laws.
    Where do you pick up an insanely stupid idea such as that? This is just an absolute bald face misrepresentation of what religious (Christian) people believe. The only area in which religious (Christian) people might disagree with science on these things is in the causative of why and how they came be. To suggest that religious people (at least Judeo-Christian religions) do not understand and believe in gravity is just a plain ignorant statement, which most of the atheists on this forum would not even consider making.

    Your entire view of religion is so jaded with mis-information, dis-information and just plain lack of any reasonable basis of knowledge, that discussion is impossible.
    What are you, a sophomore in high school?

    Quantime said:
    Dayton, when you don't refer to me as stupid we can have a discussion.
    I did not say that YOU were stupid, I said the idea which you expressed was stupid. Even very intelligent people can have stupid ideas -- look at congress.

    Your metaphor mixes apples and orangutangs. It does not appear to me that either you or saul have any idea what Christians (who you are actually referring to when you say religious) believe or how their relationship with God works. You seem only to know what Dawkins, in his jaded, perverted view of religion, says it is and he doesn't know anything about what Christianity is about either. It is like the the blind leading others into blindness.

    Quantime said:

    So you're saying atheists choose to be atheist because of ignorance so that they can 'sin' and do what they want?
    No, I'm saying just the opposite. They choose to be atheist because they know the difference between right and wrong and choose to do what they want even knowing it is wrong, thinking this absolves them from any responsibility before God for doing wrong.

    quantime added:


    Taking drugs is ok, in moderation.
    Homosexual sex is ok.
    Drink alcohol to excess is ok, in moderation.
    Lie, cheating and stealing are ways of getting by some time. Don't tell me religious institutions haven't been doing that since they told people God was watching them masturbate every night.
    So are you saying that drug addiction, alcholism and homosexual relationships are productive ways of life? And can you figure out ahead of time which people whose intent is to use mind altering substances will be become addicted to them. Meth is virtully impossible not to become addicted to and it is horribly destructive. Drugs are like playing Russian roulette. Some are not hurt, but some are.

    I cannot say that religious people are not involved in these kinds of activities. But there is a difference in repenting of improper actions and doing them in defiance of authority. If you are in court before a judge for speeding which is going to be the better approach with the judge -- "I did it and I am glad I did it," or "I'm sorry and I will try not to speed again?"

    That's the difference in people doing these things in difiance of God and people doing them and telling God their sorry and they will try to do better.

    Quantime asked:
    Answer me this, why would an all omnipotent, all knowing, wise, loving god not let his children go up into the mountains, brashly, against all advice and learn from their own mistakes? What God would not let his children get lost and what god would deny human nature? If after all he was the one that gave us that nature?
    He does allow us to make our own mistakes, get lost and respond to human nature. And perhaps when you have children and they do things which you caution them not to do and they get hurt because they did them, you will know how God feels when we do that.

    I can cut you guys some slack, though. A recent Pew poll showed that atheist, in general, know more about the Bible than main stream Christians.
    in response to the first part of your post, i already conceded that i could not disprove a clockmaker type god. but such a god is also impossible to prove because of the very nature of it, the idea is that it has no influence on the world after the creation of the physical laws and the initial conditions, to debate such a god is pointless as neither side can make progress. and what i said was intended to go hand in hand with what i said later, i showed that science is valid because it follows certain rules of logic that give it credibility, and i later showed that religion does not withstand the tests presented by these rules of logic.

    as for the second part of your response, i'm assuming you're a main stream christian because your response to me demonstrates a complete failure to understand the religious text that you worship. there are a list of instances in your bible which directly contradict the physical laws that scientists have established through a great deal of testing and attempts at disproving them. the idea that there can be a lifeform which does not have a physical form is completely outside of what we observe, the spontaneous creation of the world is wholely inaccurate, the bible states that the earth was to be set in its place never to move, the very concept of a virgin birth is impossible with medical technology of the time, turning water into wine, a being having any influence over the physical world through an act of will is shear and utter bullshit and any (real) scientist will tell you that. there needs to be cause in order for there to be effect, thinking alone changes nothing and your religious text denies that outright.

    and i didn't state that religious people didn't believe in gravity, but i will state clearly that your bible suggests that some invisible thing which we have never observed in any way shape or form could by no more than force of will interupt the force and manipulate the world in any way it saw fit. it is not something that you can possibly deny, the idea that god interacts with the world is a fundamental part of any christian beliefs, you claim to get your very moral code from this god. and frankly the fact that you immediately associate a disaproval of christianity with dawkins shows that you are in fact far more ignorant of your opposition than i. i've not read any of dawkin's books and have only watching perhaps a combined one hour of his videos. the majority of my views on christianity come from my observations of christian doctrines(i was indoctrinated for many years) and my observations of the world. and, unfortunately i had not viewed this topic in time to respond to you post on the ineffectiveness of indoctrination, my response would be as follows:

    if the highest end of your figure were true and only ten percent of indoctrinated people ended up in the faith they were indoctrinated into, your statement would still be false. indoctrination is not the only way that religions stay alive, they also convert people from other religions. so successful indoctrination of ten percent of children of parents of that faith would be a perfectly sound strategy for maintaining the population of believers if it were accompanied by converts from other religions. also i do hope you know that your figures are very recent, and in modern times religious devotion is slowly but surely loosing ground to secularism, agnosticism, and atheism.

    back to your recent response, in part three you were somewhat justified and somewhat not. the analogy that quantime used was a bit of a stretch, but by relating it to intellectual garbage you simply made it personal whether you wanted to or not. so, in the interest of this conversation remaining about evidence for and against religion i'd rather that the subject be dropped. of course i have no control over either of you so if you each wish to degrade the quality of the conversation then by all means keep it up.

    beyond that i find it hard to take your side at all. in your very next response to quantime you state that atheists chose to be atheist so that they can act in a certain way that christians aren't supposed to act (but, as you acknowledge, they still often do). firstly, you didn't provide any evidence for this. second, if it were true it wouldn't validate religion. however what it does do is show that you are clearly biased and unable to perform an objective study of religious and irreligious people, and evidence for and against religion.

    your mentioning of the lack of productivity in drug addiction, alcoholism(odd that you distinguish them), and homosexual relationships is quite accurate. all three of them harm the darwinian fitness of the organism participating in them. however, based on your former comments on how those ways of life are immoral, i'm skeptical that you are really concerned with the productivity of those ways of life(and even if you are, it still fails to relate to the topic at hand).

    the rest of your response is some very interesting theology, but this is not a theology forum. this is the science forum, and this is the scientific study of religion subforum. there are certain standards for the quality of an arguement and theology simply doesn't meet any scientific standards.

    p.s. i chose to take the name of saul not because of his experience as a christian, but because of how he persecuted christians. i do not whip and torture them, i make logical arguements against their god and anyone else's god.
    physics: accurate, objective, boring
    chemistry: accurate if physics is accurate, slightly subjective, you can blow stuff up
    biology: accurate if chemistry is accurate, somewhat subjective, fascinating
    religion: accurate if people are always right, highly subjective, bewildering
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  28. #27  
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    Quantime said:

    Religion and perversion seem to go hand in hand don't they? I fail to recognise how religion has any long term positive effect on the human race,

    Well, let's look at just one example -- the influence of John Calvin on modern government.

    Without going into the long story which preceded Calvin's return to Geneva, he was invited back by Genevans and asked to develop a new city government because the preceding government was in total disarray due to the authorityh of the church over the civil government.

    According to the atheist Bible -- Wikipedia:

    In supporting Calvin's proposals for reforms, the council of Geneva passed the Ordonnances ecclésiastiques (Ecclesiastical Ordinances) on 20 November 1541. The ordinances defined four orders of ministerial function: pastors to preach and to administer the sacraments; doctors to instruct believers in the faith; elders to provide discipline; and deacons to care for the poor and needy.[29] They also called for the creation of the Consistoire (Consistory), an ecclesiastical court composed of the lay elders and the ministers. The city government retained the power to summon persons before the court and the Consistory could judge only ecclesiastical matters having no civil jurisdiction. Originally, the court had the power to mete out sentences, with excommunication as its most severe penalty. However, the government contested this power and on 19 March 1543 the council decided that all sentencing would be carried out by the government.[30]
    (Sorry, you'll have to go to Wikipedia to look up the footnote references.)

    What you should note here is that Calvin separated the powers of the church from those of the civil government -- the very first time in history we see a concept of separation of church and state.

    This was probably the most significant development in government since Greek democracy and Roman republican innovations. This, I would suggest has had the most significant and influential "long term positive effect on the human race" that has occurred in the last millennium.

    Also, remember that the work of Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin were motivated by their religious beliefs. Though Darwin later abandonned his faith in God, he was originally motivated by that faith.

    One might also note that, through 2003, some 164 people of Jewish heritage have won Nobel Prizes -- 11 in literature, nine in peace, 27 in chemistry, 22 in economics, 51 in medicine and 44 in physics. Granted, not all these people were practicing Jews (the list includes Einstein), but surely, among all those Nobel prizes, there must have been something of "long term positive effect on the human race." It would seem these people are, at least indirectly, associated with religion.

    ( http://electionink.com/showthread.ph...-Prize-Winners )

    Your claim is just contrary to fact and is merely emotionally charged hyperbole. Religion is at the root of virtually every human system and every human accomplishment. This kind of stuff comes from an entirely uninformed position.

    The rest of your post continues to babble these same kinds of hyperbolic, uninformed positions that have no connection with reality, facts or history.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Saul, just to pick out a couple of things, space prohibits commentary on all the errors in your latests post.

    Saul said:

    there are a list of instances in your bible which directly contradict the physical laws that scientists have established through a great deal of testing and attempts at disproving them. etc
    As long as you are drawing a line in the sand that says science is the only answer to all questions, you are probably correct in so far as you go. And if you give no quarter to the supernatural, again, your are correct as far as you go. But so long as you cling to only the physical, that is all you can quantify or qualify. So, there is an extent to which I would agree that some things which would defy scientific explanation. So as long as you are disposed to completely discount anything beyond the physical and the natural, they will be incomprehesible to you whereas to me they show God's ability to intervene into the natural world. How much time have they wasting proving an ass can't talk?

    saul said:

    your former comments on how those ways of life are immoral
    I have never used the term moral or immoral except in threads where others first introduced those terms. You use of the term immoral is the first time it has been used in this thread. I believe I called these activities counterproductive activities which, of course, you are free to interpret as also being immoral should you wish to apply that label. I also used the terms "right and wrong" generically without directly referencing any particular activity as being one or the other although some connection could have been made to the activities Quantime originally mentioned.

    saul also said:


    the rest of your response is some very interesting theology, but this is not a theology forum. this is the science forum,
    Well, so far, I have not seen a lot of science being discussed here, or on any thread in this forum section, rather the lack of science in the form of outlandish misrepresentations of other peoples' beliefs. You start out the thread claiming with all the "eevidence" disproving religion and then in this post admit there is no evidence one way of the other:

    i already conceded that i could not disprove a clockmaker type god
    There is nothing scientific about religion, so the forum would either be better off to just totally ban all discussion of religion including religious pot shots in non-religious threads, or admit that religion is not science any more than is philosophy.

    Science is made up of veryfiable facts, so far neither you, saul, nor Quantime have offered many verifiable or unverifyable facts. What you have offered is a lot of hyperbole and opinion which you self idolize by elevating them to fact status. Neither opinions nor beliefs are facts. And that's a fact.

    Incidentally, saul, my advice to you is to never plan a trip to Damascus.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wilson
    If you have a look at the history of Northern Ireland and other areas of the UK where sectarianism is rife, alcoholism and the practice of going to church go hand in hand.
    I don't believe in religion, but if you are saying that the troubles in Northern Ireland are caused primarily by religion I would not accept your analysis. The allegiance, of two groups, to different branches, of the same religion, is only one factor, causing division, in a complex situation with political, economic, social and historical roots.
    Lastly what evidence do you have (you may have some) that alcoholism is a more significant element of life in Northern Ireland compared to the rest of the UK or other developed nations and their regions?
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Quantime said:

    Religion and perversion seem to go hand in hand don't they? I fail to recognise how religion has any long term positive effect on the human race,
    ...What you should note here is that Calvin separated the powers of the church from those of the civil government -- the very first time in history we see a concept of separation of church and state.
    Even though that be true, it still does not rule out the fact that eventually the two would have separated anyway, regardless of religion. The very fact that they are now separate changes nothing. The religious institutes of the world oft sit back and relax, throwing the occasional good will programs out there so the vast religious followers of the world do not grow suspicious. All they do is gather money, alike governments, for their own selfish wants and wallets.

    Also, I don't recall in history that followers were aware that there was a difference between religion and government as both often dictated to them what they could and could not do, causing the lineage of the classes that evolved in societies across the world.

    Religion does nothing for humanity, period. Most wars have been motivated and used the guise of 'righetoussness' of their god and faith to conquer billions. I'd summise that most of the 15 billion human deaths as a result of wars, at least 75% of them and the leaders that manufatured those wars, often used god and religion to motivate their soldiers.... it's done more harm than good.

    Don't let that carrot keep your attention dayton. That's all religion does, promise you goods, happiness, love, peace, eternal life. If one focused on their own humanly lives and controlled their thoughts, living and feeling happiness would be a fact of life; there would be no need for heaven.

    I'm all for eternal life; there are so many stars and planets to discover out there, cultures, people, ideas to enjoy and experience. Hell, there's more than a lifetimes worth on earth. I don't see why wasting a life on religious dogma will help the human race.

    This was probably the most significant development in government since Greek democracy and Roman republican innovations. This, I would suggest has had the most significant and influential "long term positive effect on the human race" that has occurred in the last millennium.
    I'm sure there others that neither of us are aware of... Besides, this is your personal opinion of what was the most positive effect of the last millenium. There must be many other facts and events that neither of us, or even history textbooks have known or written about. Just because this one services your belief system and sounds logical to you, it doesn't mean that it neccisarliy does to me or anyone else. It's a vagary; a self conecptualised truth of reality that you have adopted, and it doesn't reflect reality or truth as we know it, or apparently, don't.

    Also, remember that the work of Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin were motivated by their religious beliefs. Though Darwin later abandonned his faith in God, he was originally motivated by that faith.
    So? That's their belief in God, I hardly believe that in them being the smart intelligent geniuses they were, did it for a church or religion. Belief in God isn't religion. Religion is the following of a collection of human manufactured ideas that adopted and used the notion of god, to write texts, stories, fairy tales of what 'god said' and then profess it as truth to gather millions, rather billions to follow their doctrine to control the masses and collect their gold, jewels and life long possessions, all in the name of 'worshipping god'; an exploitation of human beings, and a disgrace to humanity itself.

    You need to define religion as it really is dayton, admist the rats and oily water it is tough to see a clear picture, and all you end up seeing anyway is a clear reflection of what you want to see, of all you dream about and visualise; and that reflection is yourself.

    One might also note that, through 2003, some 164 people of Jewish heritage have won Nobel Prizes -- 11 in literature, nine in peace, 27 in chemistry, 22 in economics, 51 in medicine and 44 in physics. Granted, not all these people were practicing Jews (the list includes Einstein), but surely, among all those Nobel prizes, there must have been something of "long term positive effect on the human race." It would seem these people are, at least indirectly, associated with religion.
    You cannot associate scientific discovery with religion. Religion has nothing to do with science, if it did we wouldn't be here discussing why you think it does and why I think it doesn't.

    Your claim is just contrary to fact and is merely emotionally charged hyperbole.
    Excellent telepatchic abilities dayton, even I wasn't aware I was doing that. How remarkable. Wait, that doesn't make sense, maybe God told you?

    Religion is at the root of virtually every human system and every human accomplishment. This kind of stuff comes from an entirely uninformed position.
    Maybe inside the Bible, Qu'ran, church or mosque, but in the real world, no it doesn't. Religion services the individual, it's promises and asscertaining 'god is right and I agree with god' notions allow you to walk carefree in life, never being wrong, always being right and so righetously belieivng as a result that you are superior to other human beings, and that your faith gives you the right to insult and profress delusions as truth, truths which murder, kill, mame and steal from innocent people, or not so innocently brainwashed opposing religious institutes thinkning the same.

    Bottom line, all religion does is service the self. Yourself, making you feel happy and cosy. So if anything, religion is a selfish concept, and selfishness is written across all species on this planet. At the end of it all, we are all selfish and do everything for ourselves; our temporary benevolence to some extent still benefits us or we wouldn't do it... even if it is a temporary feeeling of happiness knowing you did something someone else wouldn't. That selfsheness is evident in religion, and as a result is scientifically understandable. Religion is a thought process that services the self preservation of a person with little validation and placement in intelligent society (by intelligent I mean able to verify and objectify so called 'facts' into a real perception of the world).

    Disagree? Look up any psychology textbook, or hisotrical acrhive with that notion in mind and tell me I am wrong. No, please do, I'd like to know I'm wrong so I can keep learning and growing and not just stay limited in mind, delusionally thinking I know it all.



    The rest of your post continues to babble these same kinds of hyperbolic, uninformed positions that have no connection with reality, facts or history.

    Reality is subjective, facts unverifed and history written by idelogical liars.... if you so chose to affiliate with them, be my guest. The rest of us will stick with science, and keep a subjective mind as to what reality is, what facts inform and what history teaches, not what it dictates.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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  32. #31  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantime
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Quantime said:

    Religion and perversion seem to go hand in hand don't they? I fail to recognise how religion has any long term positive effect on the human race,
    ...What you should note here is that Calvin separated the powers of the church from those of the civil government -- the very first time in history we see a concept of separation of church and state.
    Even though that be true, it still does not rule out the fact that eventually the two would have separated anyway, regardless of religion. The very fact that they are now separate changes nothing. The religious institutes of the world oft sit back and relax, throwing the occasional good will programs out there so the vast religious followers of the world do not grow suspicious. All they do is gather money, alike governments, for their own selfish wants and wallets.

    Also, I don't recall in history that followers were aware that there was a difference between religion and government as both often dictated to them what they could and could not do, causing the lineage of the classes that evolved in societies across the world.

    Religion does nothing for humanity, period. Most wars have been motivated and used the guise of 'righetoussness' of their god and faith to conquer billions. I'd summise that most of the 15 billion human deaths as a result of wars, at least 75% of them and the leaders that manufatured those wars, often used god and religion to motivate their soldiers.... it's done more harm than good.

    Don't let that carrot keep your attention dayton. That's all religion does, promise you goods, happiness, love, peace, eternal life. If one focused on their own humanly lives and controlled their thoughts, living and feeling happiness would be a fact of life; there would be no need for heaven.

    I'm all for eternal life; there are so many stars and planets to discover out there, cultures, people, ideas to enjoy and experience. Hell, there's more than a lifetimes worth on earth. I don't see why wasting a life on religious dogma will help the human race.

    This was probably the most significant development in government since Greek democracy and Roman republican innovations. This, I would suggest has had the most significant and influential "long term positive effect on the human race" that has occurred in the last millennium.
    I'm sure there others that neither of us are aware of... Besides, this is your personal opinion of what was the most positive effect of the last millenium. There must be many other facts and events that neither of us, or even history textbooks have known or written about. Just because this one services your belief system and sounds logical to you, it doesn't mean that it neccisarliy does to me or anyone else. It's a vagary; a self conecptualised truth of reality that you have adopted, and it doesn't reflect reality or truth as we know it, or apparently, don't.

    Also, remember that the work of Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin were motivated by their religious beliefs. Though Darwin later abandonned his faith in God, he was originally motivated by that faith.
    So? That's their belief in God, I hardly believe that in them being the smart intelligent geniuses they were, did it for a church or religion. Belief in God isn't religion. Religion is the following of a collection of human manufactured ideas that adopted and used the notion of god, to write texts, stories, fairy tales of what 'god said' and then profess it as truth to gather millions, rather billions to follow their doctrine to control the masses and collect their gold, jewels and life long possessions, all in the name of 'worshipping god'; an exploitation of human beings, and a disgrace to humanity itself.

    You need to define religion as it really is dayton, admist the rats and oily water it is tough to see a clear picture, and all you end up seeing anyway is a clear reflection of what you want to see, of all you dream about and visualise; and that reflection is yourself.

    One might also note that, through 2003, some 164 people of Jewish heritage have won Nobel Prizes -- 11 in literature, nine in peace, 27 in chemistry, 22 in economics, 51 in medicine and 44 in physics. Granted, not all these people were practicing Jews (the list includes Einstein), but surely, among all those Nobel prizes, there must have been something of "long term positive effect on the human race." It would seem these people are, at least indirectly, associated with religion.
    You cannot associate scientific discovery with religion. Religion has nothing to do with science, if it did we wouldn't be here discussing why you think it does and why I think it doesn't.

    Your claim is just contrary to fact and is merely emotionally charged hyperbole.
    Excellent telepatchic abilities dayton, even I wasn't aware I was doing that. How remarkable. Wait, that doesn't make sense, maybe God told you?

    Religion is at the root of virtually every human system and every human accomplishment. This kind of stuff comes from an entirely uninformed position.
    Maybe inside the Bible, Qu'ran, church or mosque, but in the real world, no it doesn't. Religion services the individual, it's promises and asscertaining 'god is right and I agree with god' notions allow you to walk carefree in life, never being wrong, always being right and so righetously belieivng as a result that you are superior to other human beings, and that your faith gives you the right to insult and profress delusions as truth, truths which murder, kill, mame and steal from innocent people, or not so innocently brainwashed opposing religious institutes thinkning the same.

    Bottom line, all religion does is service the self. Yourself, making you feel happy and cosy. So if anything, religion is a selfish concept, and selfishness is written across all species on this planet. At the end of it all, we are all selfish and do everything for ourselves; our temporary benevolence to some extent still benefits us or we wouldn't do it... even if it is a temporary feeeling of happiness knowing you did something someone else wouldn't. That selfsheness is evident in religion, and as a result is scientifically understandable. Religion is a thought process that services the self preservation of a person with little validation and placement in intelligent society (by intelligent I mean able to verify and objectify so called 'facts' into a real perception of the world).

    Disagree? Look up any psychology textbook, or hisotrical acrhive with that notion in mind and tell me I am wrong. No, please do, I'd like to know I'm wrong so I can keep learning and growing and not just stay limited in mind, delusionally thinking I know it all.



    The rest of your post continues to babble these same kinds of hyperbolic, uninformed positions that have no connection with reality, facts or history.

    Reality is subjective, facts unverifed and history written by idelogical liars.... if you so chose to affiliate with them, be my guest. The rest of us will stick with science, and keep a subjective mind as to what reality is, what facts inform and what history teaches, not what it dictates.
    I'm cautioning you, you are treading some rather thin waters man, both of you are right on points and wrong on others.

    When it comes to Dayton's point on God/Religion being the root of Human civilization, he's right. It is, has been, and likely will be the root of civilization for a long while to come. Religion has uses that are, in fact, positive, they just are concealed by the massive negative affects we perceive from religion. In all reality, it isn't evil, nor is it good. Those terms shouldn't be applied to religion, science, nor any other concept of the like. Religion is religion, and little else. It manifests as an ideological myth in most every culture across the planet. One thing to note, is that it is all story, and moral myth, and not visceral. It isn't a physical thing, and doesn't do physical things. People do, and last I checked, every person has about the same aptitude to be evil, regardless of ideology. Religion is often an excuse, as are other moral institutions, and shouldn't be blamed for the atrocities of the individual professing them.
    Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools, because they have to say something.
    -Plato

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    i think arcane has summed up my position more eloquently than i could have.

    however i feel i should add that when a religion claims that it is more than an ideology about moral codes and the like, it steps outside of the realm of truth. almost all religions have a creation story, for instance. and many also have miracles as part of their belief structure. when people interpret these things literally they do go against what we observe in the real world.

    a religion that doesn't make such claims about physical occurences is little more than a belief about how people should act, in fact i'd be willing to say that religion without myths about physical happenings is mere philosophy.
    physics: accurate, objective, boring
    chemistry: accurate if physics is accurate, slightly subjective, you can blow stuff up
    biology: accurate if chemistry is accurate, somewhat subjective, fascinating
    religion: accurate if people are always right, highly subjective, bewildering
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    Mere philosophy?
    The mark of a moderate man is freedom from his own ideas - Tao Te Ching

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    Arcane said:

    Well, I'm not sure what. I dunno if your caution also was meant for me, but if so, while you may disagree with my conclusions and my applications, I don't think I have said anything of a factual nature that can be disagreed with.

    Meanwhile Quantime said:
    Bottom line, all religion does is service the self. Yourself, making you feel happy and cosy. So if anything, religion is a selfish concept, and selfishness is written across all species on this planet. At the end of it all, we are all selfish and do everything for ourselves; our temporary benevolence to some extent still benefits us or we wouldn't do it... even if it is a temporary feeeling of happiness knowing you did something someone else wouldn't. That selfsheness is evident in religion, and as a result is scientifically understandable. Religion is a thought process that services the self preservation of a person with little validation and placement in intelligent society (by intelligent I mean able to verify and objectify so called 'facts' into a real perception of the world).

    Disagree? Look up any psychology textbook, or hisotrical acrhive with that notion in mind and tell me I am wrong. No, please do, I'd like to know I'm wrong so I can keep learning and growing and not just stay limited in mind, delusionally thinking I know it all.
    Again, you are expressing some self determined interpretation of something I doubt you know much about and presenting it as fact. I think you need to present some documentation for this kind of statement because I will not accept it at face value. This sounds like the kind of stuff that Dawkins and Dennet would spew and they are in no way experts, either.

    I do not think that psychology, in general, labels religion as a selfish concept. The religion to which I belong encourages just the opposite. I recently returned from a humanitarian trip to a Muslim country where the group I was with assisted in the construction of a community center for Muslim women.

    Denying and lacking any formal orgnization atheists would have a hard time putting together this kind of an effort. So, by their own personal choice, it would seem to me that atheism promotes selfishness by merely not offering any means for unselfishness.

    Overall, I continue to be amazed as the disinformation, misinformation and just plain lack of information which seem to permeate saul's posts.

    The idea that church and state would have been separated by some other process is possible. But we do not know what that process would have been nor how long it would have taken. We can easily say anything might have happened by some other process, but we do not know what would process have brought that occurence or the timing of that occurrence.

    Surely slavery in the United States would have been abolished by some process other than a cival war. But we cannot determine what that process might have been or when it might have taken place. Would it have been more peaceful or would it have lead to some racial war?

    By your reasoning, you would have been born regardless of whether your parents got together or not. Some other mating might just as well have produced you.

    We can only work with what has actually happened and view the causes and effects of what actually happened. Well, I suppose you could say if you had invested in Microsoft, you would have done better than if you had invested in Enron, so you can, in some instances determine what might have been.

    The thing is, things are the way they are for the reasons they are that way. It is not because they might have happened some other way or might not have happened except for they way they happened.

    You can speculate all you want, but things have happened in the world and they happened because of the cause and effect that occurred at the time they happened.

    Even science doesn't bog down by going back and saying that if Einstein had not so distinctly published his theories of relativity that someone else would have. The point is that Einstein did. Even if Darwin had not published his treatise on natural selection and survival of the fittest, someone else would have. But so what, Darwin put the words on paper in a way that was successful.

    The only value of doing that is to pointlessly demean the process by which those important scientific theories came to us and in the process, equally demean both Einstein and Darwin. The only reason to deny that religion has been the catalyst of much progress in the human race is to pointlessly demean religion and the people who lead such changes.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    edit your post, i didn't say that.

    edit: oh, and sorry prometheus. i respect philosophy but it is a much more general term than religion, and thus to go from the specific case of a religion to the broad case of a philosophy indicates a lowering in the status of the idea being described. perhaps my word choice was off a bit.
    physics: accurate, objective, boring
    chemistry: accurate if physics is accurate, slightly subjective, you can blow stuff up
    biology: accurate if chemistry is accurate, somewhat subjective, fascinating
    religion: accurate if people are always right, highly subjective, bewildering
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Arcane said:

    Well, I'm not sure what. I dunno if your caution also was meant for me, but if so, while you may disagree with my conclusions and my applications, I don't think I have said anything of a factual nature that can be disagreed with.
    It was meant for Quantime. You've been much more careful with your facts than him, and have been much better in your analysis, though at the same time I'm neither agreeing with nor disagreeing with the majority of your points, just weighing in on the actually debating taking place.
    Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools, because they have to say something.
    -Plato

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  38. #37  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arcane_Mathematician
    When it comes to Dayton's point on God/Religion being the root of Human civilization, he's right. It is, has been, and likely will be the root of civilization for a long while to come.
    Hopefully not. It may appear to be the root, there is however a sub underlining reason why people have religion and what motivates them to be religious and as I have said its out of selfish behaviour. Not saying that that's bad; often it is good. What I am saying is that that selfishness of human nature is the root of human civilisation, not religion.

    The fundemental principle of scientific discovery and religious following are perhaps linked to the same selfish drives, give or take.

    I'll admit most of my ideas came from when I was religious, and a lot of my now developed theories came from that religious drive. However my lifestyle and personal happiness only truly came when leaving religion, so I stand by my point on that one.

    Religion has uses that are, in fact, positive, they just are concealed by the massive negative affects we perceive from religion.
    So's dog shit covered with candy floss but you wouldn't eat it. Religion does more harm than good. In that respect it's not wise for it to exist maliciously if it does cause more harm than good.

    If a person is religious and contributes well, and is a shining model of a human being (even with their animalistc traits that they have no shame in admitting and being proud of), then I have no problem with them or their religion. Live and let live. I'm saying that as a whole in general religion has negative effects on the long term maintenence of the human race.

    In all reality, it isn't evil, nor is it good. Those terms shouldn't be applied to religion, science, nor any other concept of the like.
    I never used those terms, so don't suggest I did. Even if it was one man's good or evil and in reverse (I am using this as an example, not as a self view point from my side discussion), then those terms do exist and are real in their minds and thus manifest both percievable to each other, divide and then conquer. A trait evident throughout human history.

    Religion is religion, and little else. It manifests as an ideological myth in most every culture across the planet. One thing to note, is that it is all story, and moral myth, and not visceral. It isn't a physical thing, and doesn't do physical things, people do...
    Exactly, like a trigger of a gun and the person using it. However I personally believe it is the manifestation of those beliefs within a human mind that then gives it the potential to become dangerous, the very fact that it permetates a mind is equivalent to a disease in the wrong person, others will have immunities and others will be highly susceptible.

    For example, would you let a disease such as syphillis ravage our species without curing it Arcane? Without recognising it as a threat to the human condition and even human life?

    It is a diseased meme, and a dangerous one at that. One which is better left from the world, visceral or not.

    ...and last I checked, every person has about the same aptitude to be evil, regardless of ideology.
    I don't mean to be a nitpicking dick , aren't we not using terms such as evilness in this discussion? 'Evil' as you put it may be viewed in different contexts, there are many neccisary evils in this world. I highly recommend reading 'The Lucifer Principle' by Howard Bloom. Fantastic description of human nature and inquisitive understanding of these neccisary 'evil's'.

    Religion is often an excuse, as are other moral institutions, and shouldn't be blamed for the atrocities of the individual professing them.
    Yes I am aware of that. Regardless of that religion still humbles people too much, and places too much emphasis on being meek, and being lowly with hope of return, sort of like a twisted investment if you will.

    I think Jesus said something along similar lines:

    "There will be those who will follow me and take my name in vain, there will be those who will follow me for the rewards of heaven, and there will be those who follow me for they have faith and love me so".

    Something like that. In my terms and how I can kinder this to understanding is:

    There will be those that abuse religion and use it as an excuse for their own ends.

    There will be those who follow religion blindly believing they will be damned for not complying and rewarded for complying with being weak and non-aspiring.

    There will be those that absoultley and relentlessly follow religion so ignorant of science, so blind of reality that they become either dangerous fanatics or 'Jesus' whipped losers.


    I don't mean to cause any offence here, all three of those are terrible excuses of a life. None of them help. Sure a few missionaries and religious folk will do good, and contribute for the better of the world, but that is out of the good of their heart, or the selfish good feeling they get from doing it.... either way the collective damage and limititations religion posts on humanity is demeaning...

    For the one person who holds religion dear and does contribute greatly, there are probably ten thousand that use it, blindly follow it and never acheive or both. I'd say that religion, visceral or not, is dangerous, and demeaning to humanity. It's probably as I said responsible for the deaths of over 10 billion people over our history; I'ts got to go....

    The people who create, deliver, maintain and own the gun are equally as responsible as the person that fires it; Religion is no different.

    Remember, if no-one held Mohammed or Jesus as their messiah, there wouldn't have been crusades. Granted there might have been some other excuse used, bottom line is religious people maintain a mighty big excuse by their belief; 'God is on my side'.

    Until we get the world to understand that that is very unlikely and unscientific, if human beings do not develop intellect and understanding, then religion is going to be used by meglomaniacs as an excuse to promote their ideologies and get away with it until either:

    A: Religion disappears from the face of the earth.
    B: People wil become less gullible and think for themselves.

    Now I don't know about you but last time I checked over 4 billion people have faith in religion. Pretty darn gullible if you ask me. And that is 4 billion people manufacturing harmful dangerous weapons that may be used for malice in the future (what other use of a gun is there?).

    There is no precsident for the existence of religion. Anyone can be benevolent and contribute to the world and humanity, you don't need religion to do it, and the sooner people realise that and that religion is just a fairy tale; the better.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    Well, Arcane, it all starts with a thread opener which is contrary to fact, to wit:

    i was wondering, if there are so much evidence disproving religion, then why are there still people who believe in it?
    There is no "evidence" which "disproves" religion, which makes the closing question totally moot.

    Meanwhile, others take up the theme of this hypothesis, somehow attempting to support it but succeed only in adding to the lack of facts to support that which is not true.

    It is often difficult to argue against actual facts and truth and logical statements, but it becomes near impossible when the arguements are based on non-facts, fiction, misrepresentations, mis-information, and lack of information.

    For some, it is just too obvious that they have read only one side of an issue and possibly not even very much of that.

    People reading only works like those of Dawkins and Dennet are no more authorities on religion than are those who listen only to Limbaugh and Beck authorities on politics.

    I suppose the correct answer to the OP is that the reason there are still people who have religious beliefs is because there is no evidence disproving it.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Well, Arcane, it all starts with a thread opener which is contrary to fact, to wit:

    i was wondering, if there are so much evidence disproving religion, then why are there still people who believe in it?
    There is no "evidence" which "disproves" religion, which makes the closing question totally moot.

    Meanwhile, others take up the theme of this hypothesis, somehow attempting to support it but succeed only in adding to the lack of facts to support that which is not true.
    Indeed, except as most people have realized, the point is that religious CLAIMS have been consistently disproved and shown false.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    It is often difficult to argue against actual facts and truth and logical statements, but it becomes near impossible when the arguements are based on non-facts, fiction, misrepresentations, mis-information, and lack of information.
    Oh... The sweet delicious irony of YOU making this comment...


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    For some, it is just too obvious that they have read only one side of an issue and possibly not even very much of that.

    People reading only works like those of Dawkins and Dennet are no more authorities on religion than are those who listen only to Limbaugh and Beck authorities on politics.
    Yeah, except as recently demonstrated with empirical study, atheists tend to be MORE knowledgeable about religion and religious claims than the believers against whom they are arguing.


    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/28/us/28religion.html

    Americans are by all measures a deeply religious people, but they are also deeply ignorant about religion.

    Researchers from the independent Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life phoned more than 3,400 Americans and asked them 32 questions about the Bible, Christianity and other world religions, famous religious figures and the constitutional principles governing religion in public life.

    On average, people who took the survey answered half the questions incorrectly, and many flubbed even questions about their own faith.

    Those who scored the highest were atheists and agnostics

    <...>

    “I have heard many times that atheists know more about religion than religious people,” Mr. Silverman said. “Atheism is an effect of that knowledge, not a lack of knowledge. I gave a Bible to my daughter. That’s how you make atheists.”

    http://www.pewforum.org/Other-Belief...ge-Survey.aspx
    On average, Americans correctly answer 16 of the 32 religious knowledge questions on the survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life. Atheists and agnostics average 20.9 correct answers. Jews and Mormons do about as well, averaging 20.5 and 20.3 correct answers, respectively. Protestants as a whole average 16 correct answers; Catholics as a whole, 14.7. Atheists and agnostics, Jews and Mormons perform better than other groups on the survey even after controlling for differing levels of education.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantime
    I think Jesus said something along similar lines:

    "There will be those who will follow me and take my name in vain, there will be those who will follow me for the rewards of heaven, and there will be those who follow me for they have faith and love me so".

    Something like that. In my terms and how I can kinder this to understanding is:

    There will be those that abuse religion and use it as an excuse for their own ends.

    There will be those who follow religion blindly believing they will be damned for not complying and rewarded for complying with being weak and non-aspiring.

    There will be those that absoultley and relentlessly follow religion so ignorant of science, so blind of reality that they become either dangerous fanatics or 'Jesus' whipped losers.
    There will be those who claim to be religious, those who are religious because of potential benefits, and those who are religious because they truly believe it. That's what that passage means.

    I suppose evil was the wrong word. Malicious, Violent, Detrimental to society, are much better words and phrases for the word Evil as I used it.
    Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools, because they have to say something.
    -Plato

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Again, you are expressing some self determined interpretation of something I doubt you know much about and presenting it as fact.
    I've already told you, facts are subjective, only a fool would walk the earth believing himself to be wise.

    Also, throwing a few events in human history that occured and then claiming that they were motivated by religion aren't facts.

    I think you need to present some documentation for this kind of statement because I will not accept it at face value. This sounds like the kind of stuff that Dawkins and Dennet would spew and they are in no way experts, either.
    This is food for thought; it is for you to consider, for discussion's sake and for a better understanding. I don't care if you don't accept it at face value, my thoughts are not intended to be judged at face value; I intend a broader and more insightful, indepth view on this subject along scientific logic, and compared against the pitfalls of religion and its history...

    I took a lot of effort and some thought in my reply to you, I am interested in your response to my thoughts. If you want a 'i'm right and you're wrong because here's my evidence and facts and you haven't got any' discussion, please leave right now because I have no intent to have such a discussion. Facts when it comes to religion aren't taken seriously, at least scientifically.

    If you care to show me some please do.

    I do not think that psychology, in general, labels religion as a selfish concept.
    You think? You mean you don't know.

    The religion to which I belong encourages just the opposite. I recently returned from a humanitarian trip to a Muslim country where the group I was with assisted in the construction of a community center for Muslim women.
    That's fantastic! And don't you think that that was an incredible example of human benevolence to each other as opposed to doing it because some book told you to? (I doubt it was entirley selfless). I hope you did it for reasons of the benevolence.

    Denying and lacking any formal orgnization atheists would have a hard time putting together this kind of an effort.
    You can't label athiests as 'atheists'. We all have different likes and dislikes, hobbies and interests don't we? I'm not going to band up with some total stranger just because he's an atheist, yet I would as part of a charity raising money for fighting cancer, or to help a local community hospice get built.

    How many of those are atheists? I don't think you thought about that did you dayton? Simply labelling atheists as atheists and then pertaining that they can not help contribute to humanity as a result.

    So, by their own personal choice, it would seem to me that atheism promotes selfishness by merely not offering any means for unselfishness.
    So does working, so does money, so does dating women. And what respect are we talking about selfishness? You make it sound as though it is a force of malice. Another meme you've got there.

    Overall, I continue to be amazed as the disinformation, misinformation and just plain lack of information which seem to permeate saul's posts.
    With regards to any subject in reality, opinions are often thrown in with facts. I have seen my opinions bleed through in my posts, as well as through yours dayton.

    By your reasoning, you would have been born regardless of whether your parents got together or not. Some other mating might just as well have produced you.
    Could you please be more specific as to where I said that I am interested in how you made that deduction.

    We can only work with what has actually happened and view the causes and effects of what actually happened. Well, I suppose you could say if you had invested in Microsoft, you would have done better than if you had invested in Enron, so you can, in some instances determine what might have been.
    Only with hindsight, and we have plenty of that when it comes to religion to predict what it will do for humanity in the future.

    The thing is, things are the way they are for the reasons they are that way. It is not because they might have happened some other way or might not have happened except for they way they happened.
    So a tea cup is a tea cup, because that tea cup was not made a glass, but because it was made a tea cup.

    This relates to our discussion, how?

    You can speculate all you want, but things have happened in the world and they happened because of the cause and effect that occurred at the time they happened.
    And this 'proves' religion how?

    Even science doesn't bog down by going back and saying that if Einstein had not so distinctly published his theories of relativity that someone else would have. The point is that Einstein did. Even if Darwin had not published his treatise on natural selection and survival of the fittest, someone else would have. But so what, Darwin put the words on paper in a way that was successful.
    I still don't get what you are pointing at. The past three paragraphs have made absolutley no sense to me, they all sound very much simplistic masked under a viel of complexity. Basically what you just said in that previous paragraph was:

    If one person had not made a tea cup, someone else would have made that tea cup. The point is that person did. Etc, etc. I don't understand what you are getting at

    The only value of doing that is to pointlessly demean the process by which those important scientific theories came to us and in the process, equally demean both Einstein and Darwin. The only reason to deny that religion has been the catalyst of much progress in the human race is to pointlessly demean religion and the people who lead such changes.
    So you're saying that if I refuse to acknowledge that religion was responsible for remarkable scientific discovery by those scientists, then I am equally denying the remarkable discoveries made by those scientists and the value of those discoveries?, and the scientists themselves?

    Horseshit.

    You just set up an opinion there, phrased in a way that if I disagree with it then I am discrediting scientists. You also at the end linked demeaning scientific discovery being the same as demeaning religion, implying the two are connected. Again, poppycock.




    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    By your reasoning, you would have been born regardless of whether your parents got together or not. Some other mating might just as well have produced you.
    ...

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Even science doesn't bog down by going back and saying that if Einstein had not so distinctly published his theories of relativity that someone else would have. The point is that Einstein did. Even if Darwin had not published his treatise on natural selection and survival of the fittest, someone else would have.
    You were you saying Dayton?

    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    quantime said:

    facts are subjective,
    If you believe that, there is no basis for discussion. Your arguments are firmly planted on nothing and are meaningless, not only to me, but to you, yourself.

    Of all the assinine statements you have made, this is the most assinine. What you have said in those three words is that nothing you have said can be accepted as truth. Therefore, I lable everything you have said as factually and subjectively false and worthless in meaningful discussion.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Eventually he resorts to insults because he fails to understand anothers point of view and makes no effort to. I thought you were more mature than that, obviously I was mistaken.

    I was enjoying a mature discussion with you until this point dayton. But being insulted I have no intention to carry on that discussion, if you are unable to respect another persons views and opinions as just that, even if they do seem strange to you then I will not continue. You might find others feel the same.

    If every fact wasn't subjective, and wasn't changable in some way, we'd all be sat in mud huts still, if that.

    Have your absoulte reality defined then dayton. Never changing, always constant. I may be wrong, I may be right. What I do know of that is that my reality will always change, and never be a set in stone. From that I can learn, grow and discover.

    You tell me which one will advance the human race....
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    quantime said:

    If every fact wasn't subjective,
    If 2+2=4 is not a valid constant fact, all mathmatical equations fail.

    If inertia is not a fact of physics, we have not been to the moon.

    If lift is not a fact of air passing over a curved surface, airplanes do not fly.

    If everything is subjective, nothing can be counted on to be true. If nothing is true, everything is a lie.

    If you understood what you were saying, you wouldn't be saying it.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    inow said:

    Indeed, except as most people have realized, the point is that religious CLAIMS have been consistently disproved and shown false.
    I find this to by typical of the illogical statements being made by several so called scientific posters on this forum.

    If, indeed, "most people" have realized that religious claims have consistently been disproved and shown false, why do at least one third of all humans on earth follow some religion.

    Perhaps you can give us some insight as to which religious claims have been consistently disproved. What percentage of religious claims have been disproved and shown false?

    I'm sure many of the things you feel have been proven false have merely been questioned by someone. I suppose some things have been found to be questionable. Somethings have been shown to be out of sequence for timing, without regard to the fact that their ancient society often sequenced things by order of importance rather than in order of occurance. These things are not errors or something that disproves anything. Rather, it proves the inability of many modern society people to adapt their thinking.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    dayton if you fail to see examples of religious claims that have been proven false then i think you have failed to even read any of my posts before responding to them. both in this topic and the one i posted i gave numerous examples of individual religious claims which have been proven by logical reasoning and the scientific method to be false.

    and i agree with you that quantime's statement "facts are subjective" is wrong when you leave it out of context. what he was actually trying to state(and this is revealed with hindsight by viewing his response to yoru quote) is that what you think is a fact, differs from what i think is a fact. and what you think now differs from what you will think in the future. this is in part a failure on quantime's part to use the english language well (something which i myself have much exeperience in) and also is your fault in part for not being able to understand.

    gentlemen

    what we have here, is a failure to communicate
    and quantime, if you're going to call the kettle black, try not to be the pot.
    physics: accurate, objective, boring
    chemistry: accurate if physics is accurate, slightly subjective, you can blow stuff up
    biology: accurate if chemistry is accurate, somewhat subjective, fascinating
    religion: accurate if people are always right, highly subjective, bewildering
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    inow said:

    Indeed, except as most people have realized, the point is that religious CLAIMS have been consistently disproved and shown false.
    I find this to by typical of the illogical statements being made by several so called scientific posters on this forum.

    If, indeed, "most people" have realized that religious claims have consistently been disproved and shown false, why do at least one third of all humans on earth follow some religion.
    Because many humans are fucking paste eating morons. Truth is not determined by popularity, so I encourage you to avoid this particular logical fallacy in the future.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Perhaps you can give us some insight as to which religious claims have been consistently disproved. What percentage of religious claims have been disproved and shown false?
    Really? Are you that naive? Shall I begin with the claims that the earth is only 6,000 years old, or the claims that two of every organism on the planet made it on to a little boat to survive a flood, or maybe that people lived inside of a whale?

    It's like arguing with a toddler. You're practically asking me why I don't believe in the tooth fairy, or why I don't see your imaginary friend. It's ridiculous.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    quantime said:

    If every fact wasn't subjective,
    If everything is subjective, nothing can be counted on to be true. If nothing is true, everything is a lie.
    Thank you very much. Now without letting you twist my statement to your side so convieniently for you, look at religion and tell me it is not subjective.

    That was the point I was making dayton. I wasn't refering to mathematics or physics (even though the laws of physics do change in certain circumstances). I myself am qualifying to be an electrician, and do you think I sit there and claim Ohm's law is subjective? Or AC theory when installing electrical systems? Obviously you have failed to recognise my reasoning.

    Then again, ambiguity and religion go hand in hand don't they dayton.
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    Quote Originally Posted by saul
    edit: oh, and sorry prometheus. i respect philosophy but it is a much more general term than religion, and thus to go from the specific case of a religion to the broad case of a philosophy indicates a lowering in the status of the idea being described. perhaps my word choice was off a bit.
    Not a problem, i just didn't want someone getting the impression theology was somehow superior to philosophical reasoning - considering philosophy elevates logical reasoning and defers to empiricism where appropriate; the antithesis of most religious reasoning.
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    quantime said:
    Then again, ambiguity and religion go hand in hand don't they[?]
    But isn't it interesting that you, quantime, claiming to represent the unambiguous scientific element, is saying things that are so ambiguous while it is I who, supposedly representing the ambigious religious, is pointing out how ambiguous and meaningless your statements are?

    Your (and inow's) examples of where the Bible disagrees with science are based on very litteral understandings of the English words, giving them 21st Century meanings that do not necessarily apply to the words of now different and unused languages from some two to four thousand years ago.

    The Hebrew word translated into the English word virgin does not have the same meaning as the English word virgin. While many Christians also give it the modern meaning of the word virgin, the Hebrew word was also used to refer to a young woman without regard to her chasteness. Mary would qualify as a yoiung woman and that understanding is applied to the Bible story, it also fits the context. Secondarily, "virgin" births, though rare, are not unknown in the animal world.

    Most of quantime's listed discrepancies (on page 2 of this thread) are based on things the Bible just does not say. I know of no verse that says God put the earth in place "never to move." If you can find such a verse, please reveal it to me. If you are going claim the Bible says something that may be questioned, you should at least provide the reference. Otherwise, it appears you are just blowing smoke -- probably fairly blue in color.l

    Meanwhile, inow's challenge to "miracles" is typical of non-believers whose assessment of these things is based on their pre-judged position that there is no God. If there is no God, I would tend to agree that some of these things are not physically possible by any process of alchemy that we know.

    However, if there is a God and he was the creator of the Universe, using things that we cannot imagine to fashion the world as we see it now, then changing water into wine would be child's play.

    So, until you can PROVE that God does not exist, you have not proved He has never interceded into the physical world. Nor have you proved that miracles have not and cannot have taken place.

    Even if, arguendo, I agree these things are physically impossible, it does rule out that they are possible with the added element of supernatural intervention.

    Your belief that God does not exist is not proof that He does not exist. Your disbelief in His abilities to intervene is not proof that He does not intervene.

    Both quantime and inow base their "scientific proofs" on their own prejudged postition that God does not exist. Science is no more capable of proving God does not exist than it is in proving democracy does not work. It is just not the proper measuring stick. It is like measuring viscosity of a liquid with a tape measure. It does not tell you much, if anything, about viscosity. You are using the wrong methods of quantification.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Meanwhile, inow's challenge to "miracles" is typical of non-believers whose assessment of these things is based on their pre-judged position that there is no God.
    Actually, no. My challenges are based on the lack of compelling reasons to accept your assertions... The lack of evidence in their favor. Nice try at strawmanning my position, though.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So, until you can PROVE that God does not exist, you have not proved He has never interceded into the physical world.
    Except, that's not how it works. The onus is on those who claim existence to demonstrate it with evidence. The burden of proof is on those making the claim, not on those suggesting it is unsupported. Equally, if I claimed the existence of purple unicorns, it would be up to me to demonstrate said existence with evidence and empiricism, not up to you to prove unicorns DON'T exist. Further, proving non-existence is not really possible. All we can demonstrate is a lack of compelling evidence FOR existence. Nice try at shifting the burden of proof, though.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Both quantime and inow base their "scientific proofs" on their own prejudged postition that God does not exist.
    Again, no. My position is that you lack credible evidence, and so ignoring you until said evidence is presented is simply the most rational and reasonable choice.


    Like I said... I feel like I'm arguing with a toddler about their imaginary friend.
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    Dayton, all you are doing is taking what either of myself or inow states and twisting it and changing it with ambiguity whilst still masking the same dogma under a creationist disguise.

    You claim neither of us have facts and state that to be your proof of God's existence, and that of religion's truth. Whenever scientific justification is put before you, you simply cast it aside, add a subtle mantra of yours to it and dismiss it.

    I cannot believe the level of ignorance. No wait, I can, because I was the same and I know exactly what you are thinking dayton, and exactly how gravely mistaken you are.

    I doubt you've ever had an atheists perspective.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Both quantime and inow base their "scientific proofs" on their own prejudged postition that God does not exist.
    This is the correct gambit in such a debate. You are asserting something exists, the onus is for you to prove it, not for them to disprove it. But i believe this has already been stressed several times.

    Let me explain another way. You, a Christian, assert the existence of God. A friend of mine, a Muslim, asserts the existence of Allah. Only by following the one true path can i get to heaven. Each of the above religions are mutually exclusive: both cannot be right. Though I can be sure one of the religions is certainly wrong, i cannot be sure either religion is right. Each will have to provide for me evidence of their veracity. This evidence is subjective and the same for both, i therefore have no criteria on which to base a decision. This involves only two established religions among many, which further muddies the waters.

    While this does not disprove the existence of God, i hope it illustrates why the onus is on you to produce evidence to us, not vice-a-versa.
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    Each of you is claiming that the default position is that God does not exist and, therefore, the burden of proof is on those who believe He exists. This is a childish argument

    This is diametrically opposed to history and tradition. The default position of humanity is that God does exist. It is only a very small percentage of people on earth who deny this.

    When a minority group (and you are a very, very small minority) takes a position opposed to the position of the majority, it is up to that minority to show that the majority is wrong. When you deviate from the norm, the burden is on you.

    So far, your only argument, taken to it's ultimate end, is that God does not exist because you cannot quantify Him by your understanding of your view of the physical Universe.

    However, to me, he is quantified in every aspect of the Universe and every aspect of life.

    Your self imposed limitation which considers that the entirety of everything must be defined only by a physical world is, well, just that -- a limitation on your view of anything beyond the physical world.

    That is YOUR problem, not mine. You are trapped in a black box of your own making, blinding you to anything that lies beyond the opaque limitations of that box.

    I feel much like inow in that I seem to be discussing something like world geography with little children whose knowledge base is limited to their own little block on earth. You live in a much smaller world than I -- your loss.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Each of you is claiming that the default position is that God does not exist and, therefore, the burden of proof is on those who believe He exists. This is a childish argument
    In your head it is, not anyone else's.

    This is diametrically opposed to history and tradition.
    By that you mean your mantra and doctrine, not anyone else here's.

    The default position of humanity is that God does exist. It is only a very small percentage of people on earth who deny this.
    So that small percentage can think for itself; hopefully that percentage will increase then.

    When a minority group (and you are a very, very small minority) takes a position opposed to the position of the majority, it is up to that minority to show that the majority is wrong. When you deviate from the norm, the burden is on you.
    The norm? You mean we should conform to the majority of the world in that we must now believe in a God, throwing all reason and scientific justification aside just to comply with a majority's view? No thanks.

    So far, your only argument, taken to it's ultimate end, is that God does not exist because you cannot quantify Him by your understanding of your view of the physical Universe.
    Yes. Likewise, you are unable to prove your God because of the same limitation. However, unlike religious ignorance, scientific inquiry can suggest physical reality and jusitfy the surrounding universe into a body of understanding. Last I checked, religion was a tad more ambiguous.

    However, to me, he is quantified in every aspect of the Universe and every aspect of life.
    When your quantification can be scientifically explained, then that will be relevant. This is scientific study of religion dayton, not your own viewpoint alone. Granted I have given a lot of my viewpoint with little evidence, I know however for sure that I am following logical reasoning and scientific inquiry, you are not following that same path.

    Your self imposed limitation which considers that the entirety of everything must be defined only by a physical world is, well, just that -- a limitation on your view of anything beyond the physical world.
    No, only anything relevant. If God was measurable then he would be defined by the physical world. You assume that because God is immeasurable and outside of observation that he exists.... do you not think that when the creators of the notion of God created religion and god, they thought about this? Of course they did. They knew that if they said god is not identifable, no there in accordance with that religion, how is anyone ever going to prove our religion or god to be a complete load of rubbish?

    That tactic of theirs is still fresh in your mind and evey other theist in the world.

    That is YOUR problem, not mine.
    I don't find it a problem, and I don't think inow, saul or prometheus find it a problem either.

    Look dayton, I know what its like to have numerous people against you in discussion, I have experienced it before and I experience it frequently in the real world. There is no need to get upset over it; it's a fact of life that people have opinions, if that pisses you off you won't be a happy person content with your own beliefs.

    Believe in God all you want dayton, I don't care if you do. By all means that is what you believe, and I say live and let live... What I do care about however is the effect religion has on the human race and how it affects it so, and that scientifically speaking it is a non-entity, it's facts ambiguous, it's definitions unsolvable and its followers ignorant. Because of that it can never fit into a body of science, nor allow for the proof of god or religion under those circumstances.

    You are trapped in a black box of your own making, blinding you to anything that lies beyond the opaque limitations of that box.
    If you can so clearly see outside of this black box, please feel free to translate what you see to us and help us see that there is a god.

    I bet you can't. So that means one of two things:

    1: You're also in a box that you cannot see out of (religious dogma)
    2: You're outside the box and see no god.

    I'm willing to bet that you're in the box. There's no win either way.

    I feel much like inow in that I seem to be discussing something like world geography with little children whose knowledge base is limited to their own little block on earth.
    Knowledge of what? God? The divine? Eternal life?

    If none of those have been proven to exist, then that isn't knowledge. Claiming that it is isn't knowledge; its stupidity and ignorance.

    You live in a much smaller world than I -- your loss.
    We all live on Earth dayton.... or at least some of us do.

    If we lose, then you win right? Is that what you are saying? Hardly the thing Jesus would say. Those who be lost are sought after by the shepherd than all of the flock right?

    I'm not picking at you, I'm not instigating a reaction from you. What I'm doing is trying to blatently help you understand the perspective of an atheist, and myself coming from a theist background can honestly tell you it speaks great truth....

    The truth is a hard thing to accept. You think it was easy for me to throw away God when I needed him so? It was the hardest thing to do smashing that glass cross that came with a 'footprints' poem, yet I did it and am glad, because it set me free. Free from religion, dogma, memes, mantras and lies. It helped my life become better, and did more for me leaving religion than it did when I followed it.

    Science has questions and answers; religion is void of both.
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    quantime said:
    to blatently help you understand the perspective of an atheist
    If all you ever did was try to explain what you believe, that would be OK with me. But your only method of expressing what you believe seems to be attacking that which you don't believe by misrepresenting what others believe.

    You would make a great writer for political ads. They never accurately represent the positon of the opposition. Nor do you, when you talk about religion (at least as it relates to Christianity).

    I sort of know what you believe, but not because you have ever expressed it, but because you are a typical atheist. What you believe is that everything is defined only by physical processes -- i.e. the only thing in existence is matter in motion. Everything you think, believe and accept is based on that very narrow concept.

    The consistant harangue here that Christians do not believe in science is just plain ignorant. And I hate to praise such an idea even that much. It is worse than ignorant. Ignorance implies there was no opportunity to learn.

    As I said much earlier in this thread, the main difference is not in the substance of our understandings of science, but in our view of the hows and whys of the origin of the Universe and life.

    When you can understand that and understand religion enough to accurately speak about it, there will be no reason for me to discuss these issues because they will cease to be issues.

    You do not have to believe in God to understand and accurately state what Christians believe. You have to either be ignorant of their beliefs or deliberately demeaning to misrepresent what others believe or stand for.

    That is the main problem you atheists have.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Each of you is claiming that the default position is that God does not exist and, therefore, the burden of proof is on those who believe He exists. This is a childish argument

    This is diametrically opposed to history and tradition. The default position of humanity is that God does exist. It is only a very small percentage of people on earth who deny this.

    When a minority group (and you are a very, very small minority) takes a position opposed to the position of the majority, it is up to that minority to show that the majority is wrong. When you deviate from the norm, the burden is on you.

    So far, your only argument, taken to it's ultimate end, is that God does not exist because you cannot quantify Him by your understanding of your view of the physical Universe.

    However, to me, he is quantified in every aspect of the Universe and every aspect of life.

    Your self imposed limitation which considers that the entirety of everything must be defined only by a physical world is, well, just that -- a limitation on your view of anything beyond the physical world.

    That is YOUR problem, not mine. You are trapped in a black box of your own making, blinding you to anything that lies beyond the opaque limitations of that box.

    I feel much like inow in that I seem to be discussing something like world geography with little children whose knowledge base is limited to their own little block on earth. You live in a much smaller world than I -- your loss.
    Buddhism is NOT a very very small minority of the world and there is no god in that religion. Check your facts dayton.
    Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools, because they have to say something.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Each of you is claiming that the default position is that God does not exist and, therefore, the burden of proof is on those who believe He exists. This is a childish argument
    It's not childish, it's correct. The default position is one of skepticism. Skepticism is easily overcome with evidence. You, and theists like you... for thousands of years... have been unable to come up with any, and you have the audacity to call the non-belief position "childish?" The mind just boggles.

    You equally reject claims without evidence all of the time... For example, you reject the concept of Thor due to lack of evidence, and the concept of tooth fairies for lack of evidence, and the concept of all manner of things... Yet here you are being totally hypocritical and asking for a double-standard, whereby the rest of us are supposed to suspend our skepticism just for YOUR beliefs? No, sir. That's simply not how it works.

    I just love how you called the non-belief position childish when you yourself accept imaginary friends. It's just classic. Thanks for the chuckle.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    This is diametrically opposed to history and tradition. The default position of humanity is that God does exist. It is only a very small percentage of people on earth who deny this.
    Which is not relevant since (as I've pointed out to you like 10 or 12 different times already) truth is not determined by popularity.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    When a minority group (and you are a very, very small minority) takes a position opposed to the position of the majority, it is up to that minority to show that the majority is wrong. When you deviate from the norm, the burden is on you.
    Nice try, but no. The individual making the claim carries the burden to support it, no matter how many other people may find the claim to be valid. This is pretty basic stuff, and you can hand-wave all you want... It won't change the fact that the onus is on you to support your assertions of existence. Sticking your fingers in your ears and closing your eyes does not change that fact, no matter how many times you repeat your fallacious point that it is up the non-believer to prove nonexistence of your particular and personal version of god.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So far, your only argument, taken to it's ultimate end, is that God does not exist because you cannot quantify Him by your understanding of your view of the physical Universe.
    I've never claimed god does not exist. I've argued that there is no compelling reason to assume he does. I remain open to evidence to change my mind, but your evasive spiritual mumbo jumbo hardly qualifies.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    However, to me, he is quantified in every aspect of the Universe and every aspect of life.
    Well, that's sweet, and vaguely poetic, but still crap all the same.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    You live in a much smaller world than I -- your loss.
    I'm going to share with you now two quotes from a guy I like a lot... Carl Sagan:


    "For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring. "

    ...and...

    "It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery. But is it not stirring to understand how the world actually works — that white light is made of colors, that color is the way we perceive the wavelengths of light, that transparent air reflects light, that in so doing it discriminates among the waves, and that the sky is blue for the same reason that the sunset is red? It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it."
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    If, indeed, "most people" have realized that religious claims have consistently been disproved and shown false, why do at least one third of all humans on earth follow some religion.
    You truly aren't resorting to argumentum ad populum? It is mathematically demonstrated that winning any given PowerBall lottery has a probability on the order of 1:80,089,128. The odds could be published on the back of every lottery ticket sold, and do you think it would impact sales? The reason it would not, is that people don't want truths that are inconvenient. Religious claims -those claims that are specific to the various delusions of religious belief- are much like the tax on the ignorant we refer to as state sponsored lottery. They hold no logical or rational basis in reality as worldviews.

    And, yet, the PowerBall Lottery still has more probability of producing a "hit" than religion. None of the supernatural and superstitious claims of religion, particular of the various Christian, Jewish, and Muslim cults, has been shown to be anything more than just what they seem: superstition.

    Perhaps you can give us some insight as to which religious claims have been consistently disproved. What percentage of religious claims have been disproved and shown false?
    The claims of religion are the burden of the claimant. If you're claiming some or all of them are factual, demonstrate their factuality. Until then, there is simply no good reason to accept them as based in reality.

    Which ones are factual? Which ones are demonstrated true?

    Each of you is claiming that the default position is that God does not exist and, therefore, the burden of proof is on those who believe He exists. This is a childish argument
    Really? Name the person born that was not taught their culture's god or gods. If a child was born and kept in isolation, you're saying it would be a Christian? A Muslim? It would know of a god? Poppycock.

    Atheism is the default position. Gods are learned. The evidence is present in any census of religious belief one takes a moment to review. Religious superstition is geographically and culturally correlated. The relationship is more than just very strong, it's clearly causal. Geography and culture determine the probability of one's religious superstition. Therefore, the notion of a god or gods is indoctrinated in children. Therefore, religion is the childish position.
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    arcane said:

    Buddhism is NOT a very very small minority of the world and there is no god in that religion. Check your facts dayton.
    Well, there is not exactly the absense of God in Buddhism, either. They are consummate agnostics. They definitely do not believe in a personal God, but they find that if He exists in some way, He is irrelevant to their focus on finding enlightenment on their own.

    However, even conceding that Buddhists do not believe in God whatsoever, they make up only about six percent of the world population, hardly a enough to say they tip the scale very far toward non-belief.

    A 2007 study ( http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html ) points out this about the 16 percent group including atheists.

    Secular/Nonreligious/Agnostic/Atheist: This is a highly disparate group and not a single religion. Although atheists are a small subset of this grouping, this category is not synonymous with atheism. People who specify atheism as their religious preference actually make up less than one-half of one percent of the population in many countries where much larger numbers claim no religious preference, such as the United States (13.2% nonreligious according to ARIS study of 2001) and Australia (15% nonreligious).
    Subsequent polls have shown, at least in the U.S., that some of the people in this group are actually believers who placed themselves in one of these categories in an effort to indicate they did not want to be affiliated with any organized named religious organization.

    It remains that recent studies have consistently showed that fewer than 10 percent of the people of this entire world population actually claim not to believe in any God at all or any supernatural being.

    So what you folks are saying is that 90 percent of the entire world population is wrong and you are under no obligation to prove them wrong but they are obligated to prove to you that they are right.

    This is just plain insane. The fact that you folks have found some tiny little corner of the internet where you are the majority does not shift the burden. You cannot change the rules of civilization and common decency to suit your own distorted view of the world.

    Personally, I am not at all disturbed about what you believe. What concerns me is the misinformation that permeates your thinkiing about religion, especially Christianity. Quit misrepresenting Christianity and I would have nothing to comment on.

    inow said:

    It's not childish, it's correct. The default position is one of skepticism.
    As is your wont, you do not connect the comment with what it refers to. It refers to the position that the burden of proof is on the believer. This idea has been refuted so many times, only a child would continue to pull it out and offer it.
    And you continue this mis application throughout your post making it a classic strawman argument.



    skinwalker asked:
    Which ones are factual? Which ones are demonstrated true?
    All of them. Prove me wrong.

    skinwalker also asked:
    If a child was born and kept in isolation, you're saying it would be a Christian? A Muslim? It would know of a god?
    Are you saying it would know everything except about God. Likely, it would know little more than a squirrel. Somehow you seem too intelligent to ask a dumb question like this. Can you tell me how high is up?

    The fact is, we are reared in communities which introduce us to their customs, practices and beliefs. We accept or reject them. Sometimes, if we are introduced to other customs, practices or beliefs, we adopt those.

    Secondarily, my point was not that people are born believing in God, only that once people reach an age to make a choice, they choose to believe in the existence of some supernatural essense.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Secondarily, my point was not that people are born believing in God, only that once people reach an age to make a choice, they choose to believe in the existence of some supernatural essense.
    Santa Claus, Yaweh, Ra, Odin... So people who believe in these are right? Why is your God the only one and not these if what you are saying is true?

    All you are doing is showing blatent hypocrisy, in that you are free to believe what you want, without evidence. Yet when another comes along with another supernatural belief without evidence, they are wrong.

    And don't try and run from it, I've been there and the reason I didn't believe in Allah or Osiris or Vishnu was of that exact same reason. My belief is real and theirs is not, I had no evidence yet I so fiercly defended my religion because I feared leaving it at some subconscious level.

    Without evidence, there exists no prescident for your belief to be proven to exist when you state that your godly belief is true and another's is not.

    QED.

    It's just bullshit dayton; absoulte crap.

    EDIT:

    I did find some evidence dayton; it's in ancient Egyptian though:

    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    quantime said:

    Santa Claus, Yaweh, Ra, Odin... So people who believe in these are right? Why is your God the only one and not these if what you are saying is true?

    All you are doing is showing blatent hypocrisy, in that you are free to believe what you want, without evidence. Yet when another comes along with another supernatural belief without evidence, they are wrong.

    And don't try and run from it, I've been there and the reason I didn't believe in Allah or Osiris or Vishnu was of that exact same reason. My belief is real and theirs is not, I had no evidence yet I so fiercly defended my religion because I feared leaving it at some subconscious level.

    Without evidence, there exists no prescident for your belief to be proven to exist when you state that your godly belief is true and another's is not.
    I don't recall ever making this an issue of who is right and who is wrong. My objection has consistently been directed at your (and others') attempts to denegrate religion (Christianity especially) by misrepresenting what followers of those religions actually believe.

    Most notably you do this by finding some belief subscribed to by a small portion of that religion and ascribing it to the whole set. Or you take some aspect of a religion's writings, interpret it in a way the followers don't, and use your own perverted interpretation to denegrate the religion.

    It is rather normal for each of us to think ourselves correct and those who believe differently as being on the wrong track. If you did not think what you believe is correct, would you not change your belief? Your simplistic answer is that everybody else is wrong and you are right. So how is that different from any particular religious follower believing his religion is right and others are wrong? Is believing yourself correct and others wrong only the privilege of atheists?

    The fact that you choose to accept only one form of evidence, limits the evidence that can be presented. If circumstantial evidence were not allowed in court trials, decisions there would be very difficult if not impossible.

    I have no idea what religion you may have been involved with. But it appears that you found it personally unfollowable. But then you ascribed the qualities of that group to all religion in general. It would be like saying all religion is wrong because a minor offshoot of Mormonism believes in polygamy.

    There are any number of cults or sects with religious practices which I think are improper or even detrimental to human society. But I do not ascribe those qualities to all religions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The default position of humanity is that God does exist.

    When a minority group takes a position opposed to the position of the majority, it is up to that minority to show that the majority is wrong.
    I think that's a reasonable point which deserves credence. The problem comes when you ask us to disprove God and then define God in such a way as to make all our proofs invalid.

    The other problem is that you have wandered onto a science forum and, unsuprisingly, the majority view here are various forms of atheism.

    May i ask, Dayton, what, if any, conceivable evidence would make you change your mind? If you take a position of faith and assert that no evidence would change your mind (being tests from God, or traps of the devil or what-not), then fair enough, i would just like to know. Is faith open to evidence?
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    My objection has consistently been directed at your (and others') attempts to denegrate religion (Christianity especially) by misrepresenting what followers of those religions actually believe.

    Most notably you do this by finding some belief subscribed to by a small portion of that religion and ascribing it to the whole set. Or you take some aspect of a religion's writings, interpret it in a way the followers don't, and use your own perverted interpretation to denegrate the religion.
    Followers of these religions believe in a god for which there is no compelling evidence. How is openly stating this a misrepresentation, perverted or otherwise?
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    Promethius said:

    I think that's a reasonable point which deserves credence. The problem comes when you ask us to disprove God and then define God in such a way as to make all our proofs invalid.
    But that is what you folks do, also. You attempt to define God in terms by which He is undefinable and then turn around and exclude the definitions by which he can be defined.

    God is not a physical, mundane, mortal being such as we. Thus, things that define physical, mundane, mortal beings are not going to do any more than approximate or analogize God's qualities.

    The fact that you cannot define God in those terms only proves that if He exists, He does not exist in such a way that He can be so referenced.

    Prometheus also said:

    The other problem is that you have wandered onto a science forum and, unsuprisingly, the majority view here are various forms of atheism.
    Well, I have been on this forum approximately five years longer than you have been, and I was here when this thread was just called "religion" and that was what was discussed.

    When the section name was changed to "Scientific Study of Religion," it became a sham of both science and religion in the sense that there seems to be some misconception that science can quantify that which is not science.

    Posts, usually from new forum members, are filled with mis-representations of (especially) Christianity. They are filled with with ignorant, unsupported claims and questions such as the OP for this thread. The are filled with opinions being presented as confirmed, proven facts. Why should anyone aware of these flaws, allow them to go unchallenged?

    As I have said many times before, you can believe what you want but don't be saying I am wrong based on some misrepresentation of what you think I believe or what you have read in Dawkins and Dennet when that is the only thing you have read about religion. They don't know what religious people (especially Christians) believe either.

    Promethius also asks if anything would change my mind. Well, dying and not waking up in the afterlife would be rather convincing. Unfortunately, I would not be aware of it. Whereas, if you die and do wake up in the afterlife, you will not have an opportunity to change your mind. At this point, I cannot conceive of anything on this side of death that would convince me -- even if God Himself came down to Earth (again) and made an announcement on CNN and Fox that He does not exist.

    inow said:

    Followers of these religions believe in a god for which there is no compelling evidence. How is openly stating this a misrepresentation, perverted or otherwise?
    Do you ever offer anything other than strawman arguments? If you ever address something I have actually said, I might attempt to respond in kind.
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    Asking a question is not a strawman. Will you please answer it?

    Also, you continue to state that non-believers only know about religion through Dawkins and Dennett, but as I've already shown you, studies show that non-believers are more informed and educated about religion than the believers themselves, so you are quite simply mistaken and presenting untruths.

    Simply repeating an invalid point does not suddenly make it valid, dayton. I do hope you realize this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    skinwalker asked:
    Which ones are factual? Which ones are demonstrated true?
    All of them. Prove me wrong.
    let's get some context on that please:


    Quote Originally Posted by skinwalker
    The claims of religion are the burden of the claimant. If you're claiming some or all of them are factual, demonstrate their factuality. Until then, there is simply no good reason to accept them as based in reality.

    Which ones are factual? Which ones are demonstrated true?
    oh, there we go. it's on you to prove to us that all of the claims of religion are factual(i have already demonstrated in past posts towards the beginning of this discussion that at least some of them are most certainly mere myths).

    argue again and again that our claims that your views aren't supported by evidence must be proven by us, it won't change anything. in science(and as two or three people have already mentioned, this is the scientific study of religion forum) the person making a claim must prove the claim. in physics the physical world proves it(or disproves it) for them by either behaving as a theory suggests or by not doing so. in such a discussion you state again and again that god is outside the physical world, so this method won't work. you have to take the place of the physical world, explain how your religion is undeniably true, or even believably plausible.

    now, if you wish not to take my advice and again toss the burden of proof like a hot potato i can just quote one of my earlier posts to you and give you a link to thunderf00t's videos on youtube that demonstrate logically how many different creationist(literal interpretation of the bible) beliefs are dead wrong. both thunderf00t and I(as well as a few other participants in this discussion) have in fact given the examples you ask for that disprove many of your claims.

    if you don't like the way that skinwalker, inow, quantime, prometheus, and myself are conducting this conversation then you don't belong on a scientific forum. we are using rules of logic, evidence, and scientific inquiry to show how illogical your claims are and tell you that you need to provide some evidence, while you resort to logical fallacies and other mental errors such as majority rule and rejection of the burden of proof.
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    inow said:

    Followers of these religions believe in a god for which there is no compelling evidence. How is openly stating this a misrepresentation, perverted or otherwise?
    I have no idea since that is not anything I said nor am I willing to defend what appears to be your interpretation of what I think is misrepresentation. It is, however, only YOUR opinion that there is no compelling evidence. There is, apparently, enough evidence to sway 80 or more percent of the people of the world, so it would appear that whatever you think is not compelling evidence is, in fact, quite compelling.

    It would appear that the evidence in support of a spiritual or supernatural world is far more compelling than the evidence against. If I were on the short side of such a lop sided equation, I would wonder if my position was based on sound evidence. Your claim that there is no compelling evidence, I would think, is a gross underestimate as to the value of the available evidence.

    Without picking out a quote from saul's post, let's take a look at the science of physics and the atomic bomb. Physics can show us how to construct an atomic bomb. But it cannot tell is if, when or where to use it.

    Science has no capacity to make that kind of a decision. There is just no formula in physics or any other field of science which leads to a conclusion that would determine whether the decision to use the atomic bomb in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was the best decision.

    Certainly, we could develop some sort of mathmatical algorithm which might be able to predict potential different outcomes which might have occurred had we taken a course other than using the bomb, but it could not tell us, with certainty, what would have happened. The question is beyond the scope of science. This is a question of morality and politics which are just not scientific fields.

    In the same way, science does not have the capacity to come to a conclusion about God. Just as there is no such thing as a scientufic method to determine when to use nuclear weapons, there is no such thing as a scientific study of religion that can determine His existence or non-existence.

    This is why you fail to find scientific evidence of God. He is just not a topic that is within the purview of scientific inspection.

    The idea that there is such a thing as a scientific study of religion is insanity! (No pun intented, (In)Sanity.)

    saul did say:

    we are using rules of logic, evidence, and scientific inquiry to show how illogical your claims are
    Very unsuccessfully, I might point out. I see very few valid applications of logic, evidence or scientific inquiry being presented, especially in your posts. You consistently violate such rules. You obviously do not understand the rules of evidence. You have presented no scientific information, zilch, nada, nothing. I did, at least, in the form of a scientific study into the nature of religious populations. You say I have used logical fallicies -- point one out. The fact that you disagree with me does not relegate anything I have written to being logically fallacious. Have you ever taken a course in logic or ethics? I didn't think so.

    Incidentally, I am not going to watch anti-religious youtube presentations any more than you are going to watch pro-religious presentations on youtube. Even would not even watch pro-religious presentations there. The best way I know to be mis-informed is to watch anything of a religious, political nature on youtube. Only idiots would watch that stupid crap and believe anything based on what they saw there. Well, you could believe the presenter is agenda driven and has an ax to grind.
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    Uhhggg... Yes, dayton. Of course. How silly of me. Thanks for showing me the light. <doh>
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    saul sed:
    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above. Seldom is it REALLY because of a lack of evidence.
    I absolutely disagree. Its very obvious you are being emotional. Doctrinism (or watever you call it) is in fact healthy to once mind. Well, there's the fable book, fairy tale book, inspiring novels, and "spice of life" anime to feed my mind.

    Bible is not factual, but its word of wisdom sure healthy to mind.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    inow said:

    Followers of these religions believe in a god for which there is no compelling evidence. How is openly stating this a misrepresentation, perverted or otherwise?
    I have no idea since that is not anything I said nor am I willing to defend what appears to be your interpretation of what I think is misrepresentation. It is, however, only YOUR opinion that there is no compelling evidence. There is, apparently, enough evidence to sway 80 or more percent of the people of the world, so it would appear that whatever you think is not compelling evidence is, in fact, quite compelling.


    Quote Originally Posted by skinwalker
    You truly aren't resorting to argumentum ad populum?
    sorry skinwalker, he actually is... again after you mentioned how feeble of a logical fallacy it is. perhaps dayton never read that post.

    It would appear that the evidence in support of a spiritual or supernatural world is far more compelling than the evidence against. If I were on the short side of such a lop sided equation, I would wonder if my position was based on sound evidence. Your claim that there is no compelling evidence, I would think, is a gross underestimate as to the value of the available evidence.
    it appears from what observations? the only observation you have made is that there are a lot of religious believers in the world. this does not equate to there being more evidence for the matter than against. we've already established that this arguement is simply fallacious. the refference to an equation is confusing, so if my interpretation is flawed feel free to elaborate on your analogy. i would assume that the lopsidedness in your analogy is the result of an imbalance of evidence for and against religion. well you've provided no scientific evidence or logical examples of why religion is the truth(if you have and i've missed them completely feel free to quote yourself to me) and i've provided at least one example as well as others, so you do in fact stand on the short side of the equation. do you ever ask yourself if your position is based on sound evidence? and the claim that there is no compelling evidence is merely an observation that at least on this page you have provided absolutely zilch. i've asked at least four times by now for you to stand up and give such logical scientific evidence but each time you throw the burden of proof at me like a monkey hurling poo.

    Without picking out a quote from saul's post, let's take a look at the science of physics and the atomic bomb. Physics can show us how to construct an atomic bomb. But it cannot tell is if, when or where to use it.
    yes because physics and the physical world doesn't care whether an atom fuses in a nuclear bomb in the middle of a city or in a star providing the energy for life to a planet. the very fact that physics doesn't have any regard for the moral values you (or i) believe in shows us that these moral values are not factual, they are our opinions.


    Science has no capacity to make that kind of a decision. There is just no formula in physics or any other field of science which leads to a conclusion that would determine whether the decision to use the atomic bomb in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was the best decision.
    again, you are correct. but how do you determine what the best descision is? is it the one that prevents the most american casualties? or is it the one that prevents the most total casualties? or is it the one that would have prevented america from having been the only nation ever to use an atomic bomb? obviously what the leaders of the time thought was right differs from what i think is right. i would never have dropped the bomb. i would have watched 150,000 of my sons and daughters die(the minimum estimate for the bombings) rather than kill all those people. this alone tells you that two different ideas of what is the best decision are not the same. does this not suggest that it is a matter of unsupported personal belief rather than science? i certainly do not claim that it is the best thing to do because the universe dictates it, i say so because I dictate it.


    Certainly, we could develop some sort of mathmatical algorithm which might be able to predict potential different outcomes which might have occurred had we taken a course other than using the bomb, but it could not tell us, with certainty, what would have happened. The question is beyond the scope of science. This is a question of morality and politics which are just not scientific fields.
    politics is most definately a scientific field. i personally have studied political science. morality on the other hand falls into that pitfall of "this is the right thing to do because..." and that sentence is ended by you with "god said so" i finish it with "because i said so" and other people will fill it with other things. the difference with morality is that you are asserting there is a basic truthfulness to your moral values, and you just cannot prove that without scientific evidence, and you clearly state that your opinions are outside of the realm of science(which, is also to say that they fall outside of the physical world that science depicts, ours).


    In the same way, science does not have the capacity to come to a conclusion about God. Just as there is no such thing as a scientufic method to determine when to use nuclear weapons, there is no such thing as a scientific study of religion that can determine His existence or non-existence.
    i'll refer back to my prior post here a bit. i mentioned two types of gods. there are clockmaker gods, and there is the god of the bible(and other gods like "him"). the first certainly cannot be proven or disproven by science, there should be no physical evidence for its existence. so i agree with you there. however the god of the christian bible performs miracles and interferes with the physical world. as i said, we do not see this suggesting that this type of god just doesn't exist. so, the second type of god, the personal god that loves you and cares what you do just doesn't exist. the first type of god may or may not exist, we can never know. i understand the attraction of the second god, but why would anyone care if there was a clockmaker god? by definition it wouldn't give a crap what we do. a clockmaker makes his clock, if it runs he sits back and is pleased, if it doesn't he either fixes it or makes a new one.


    This is why you fail to find scientific evidence of God. He is just not a topic that is within the purview of scientific inspection.
    so, i do fail to find scientific evidence for god? well now, i think that's pretty conclusive. everyone here agrees: there is no scientific evidence for god. finally.



    The idea that there is such a thing as a scientific study of religion is insanity! (No pun intented, (In)Sanity.)

    saul did say:

    we are using rules of logic, evidence, and scientific inquiry to show how illogical your claims are
    Very unsuccessfully, I might point out. I see very few valid applications of logic, evidence or scientific inquiry being presented, especially in your posts. You consistently violate such rules. You obviously do not understand the rules of evidence. You have presented no scientific information, zilch, nada, nothing. I did, at least, in the form of a scientific study into the nature of religious populations. You say I have used logical fallicies -- point one out. The fact that you disagree with me does not relegate anything I have written to being logically fallacious. Have you ever taken a course in logic or ethics? I didn't think so.
    point out a logical fallacy? yea i already did that once in this post, and skinwalker has pointed out the exact same fallacy in an earlier post by you. as for my success in proving to you that there is no scientific evidence for god, well that's all in vain because you just stated that there clearly is no such evidence. i didn't know i was preaching to the choir.

    Incidentally, I am not going to watch anti-religious youtube presentations any more than you are going to watch pro-religious presentations on youtube. Even would not even watch pro-religious presentations there. The best way I know to be mis-informed is to watch anything of a religious, political nature on youtube. Only idiots would watch that stupid crap and believe anything based on what they saw there. Well, you could believe the presenter is agenda driven and has an ax to grind
    i actually watch all of the videos that thunderf00t responds to in his own vids. i like to get some context. i also watch fox news even though i have a difficult time finding anything i agree with on there. again i do it to see the other side of the arguement while also getting a context on stewart's humorous remarks. and of course when glenn takes something from the BBC or CNN out of context to defame somebody and call them a fabian socialist(yesterday's episode, i think) i go and watch the original video that he is responding to. now, i take nothing thunderf00t says for granted. i don't take anything for granted. but what he says makes sense. for you to not even watch it demonstrates an unwillingness on your part to even hear opposing arguements to your position. i think there's a latin word for that, skinwalker help me out here?

    edit:

    p.s. xingha, in one of your first posts of the forum please try not to misquote people. that's actually what dayton said. not what he said i was saying. my regards.
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    saul said:

    point out a logical fallacy? yea i already did that once in this post, and skinwalker has pointed out the exact same fallacy in an earlier post by you. as for my success in proving to you that there is no scientific evidence for god, well that's all in vain because you just stated that there clearly is no such evidence. i didn't know i was preaching to the choir.
    So far you have only made the charge that I have said something that is a logically fallacious (that is, illogical) without citing the actual quote and what is illogical about it.

    You have seemingly agreed that there is "no evidence" of God. Unless you are in possession of all the knowledge that exists -- that which the rest of us are collectively aware of and all of that which none of us has found yet -- you cannot logically make this claim. Even if you knew 99.9 percent of all the knowledge ever to be known now and in the future, you cannot preclude the possibility that the proof of God exists in that .1 percent. So any claim that there is "no evidence" of God is illogical.

    You could logically say, "There is no extant evidence which convinces me to believe in God." But even that does not take into account that the extant evidence is sufficient to convince most of the rest of us to believe in God.

    This is not proof that God exists, but just that there is enough evidence to convince a huge portion of humanity to so believe. If you choose to reject that very same evidence, that is your prerogative. You have every right here in the West to come to that conclusion. Not sure you are allowed to openly aver that choice in some areas of the world.

    Anyway, I still would like for you to quote some illogical statement I have made and show me how it is illogical. Again, just because you disagree with something I may have said does not make it illogical.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Anyway, I still would like for you to quote some illogical statement I have made and show me how it is illogical. Again, just because you disagree with something I may have said does not make it illogical.
    Ask, and you shall receive:

    ____________________________

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I do not see where that indoctrination is any worse that the indoctrination of Dawkins...
    Appeal to incredulity and equivocation.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Definitely indoctrinated.
    Appeal to ridicule.

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The stupidity of this analogy is exceeded only by its total irrelevance.
    Appeal to ridicule. Ad hominem.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Where do you pick up an insanely stupid idea such as that?
    Appeal to ridicule. Ad hominem.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Your entire view of religion is so jaded with mis-information, dis-information and just plain lack of any reasonable basis of knowledge, that discussion is impossible.
    What are you, a sophomore in high school?
    Appeal to ridicule.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    You seem only to know what Dawkins, in his jaded, perverted view of religion, says it is and he doesn't know anything about what Christianity is about either. It is like the the blind leading others into blindness.
    Appeal to ridicule. Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    They choose to be atheist because they know the difference between right and wrong and choose to do what they want even knowing it is wrong, thinking this absolves them from any responsibility before God for doing wrong.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So are you saying that drug addiction, alcholism and homosexual relationships are productive ways of life?
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The rest of your post continues to babble these same kinds of hyperbolic, uninformed positions that have no connection with reality, facts or history.
    Appeal to ridicule. Ad hominem.

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Denying and lacking any formal orgnization atheists would have a hard time putting together this kind of an effort. So, by their own personal choice, it would seem to me that atheism promotes selfishness by merely not offering any means for unselfishness.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Overall, I continue to be amazed as the disinformation, misinformation and just plain lack of information which seem to permeate saul's posts.
    Appeal to ridicule. Ad hominem.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Your arguments are firmly planted on nothing and are meaningless, not only to me, but to you, yourself.

    Of all the assinine statements you have made, this is the most assinine. What you have said in those three words is that nothing you have said can be accepted as truth.
    Appeal to ridicule. Ad hominem.

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    If, indeed, "most people" have realized that religious claims have consistently been disproved and shown false, why do at least one third of all humans on earth follow some religion.
    Appeal to popularity.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Most of quantime's listed discrepancies (on page 2 of this thread) are based on things the Bible just does not say. I know of no verse that says God put the earth in place "never to move."
    Appeal to incredulity.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Meanwhile, inow's challenge to "miracles" is typical of non-believers whose assessment of these things is based on their pre-judged position that there is no God.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So, until you can PROVE that God does not exist, you have not proved He has never interceded into the physical world. Nor have you proved that miracles have not and cannot have taken place.
    Attempt to shift the burden of proof away from the claimant.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Both quantime and inow base their "scientific proofs" on their own prejudged postition that God does not exist.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Each of you is claiming that the default position is that God does not exist and, therefore, the burden of proof is on those who believe He exists. This is a childish argument
    Appeal to ridicule. Attempt to shift the burden of proof away from the claimant.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The default position of humanity is that God does exist. It is only a very small percentage of people on earth who deny this.

    When a minority group (and you are a very, very small minority) takes a position opposed to the position of the majority, it is up to that minority to show that the majority is wrong. When you deviate from the norm, the burden is on you.
    Appeal to popularity.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So far, your only argument, taken to it's ultimate end, is that God does not exist because you cannot quantify Him by your understanding of your view of the physical Universe.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So what you folks are saying is that 90 percent of the entire world population is wrong and you are under no obligation to prove them wrong but they are obligated to prove to you that they are right.

    This is just plain insane.
    Appeal to popularity. Appeal to ridicule.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    you do not connect the comment with what it refers to. It refers to the position that the burden of proof is on the believer. This idea has been refuted so many times, only a child would continue to pull it out and offer it.
    Appeal to ridicule. Attempt to shift the burden of proof away from the claimant.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Are you saying it would know everything except about God. Likely, it would know little more than a squirrel.
    Strawman.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    My objection has consistently been directed at your (and others') attempts to denegrate religion (Christianity especially) by misrepresenting what followers of those religions actually believe.

    Most notably you do this by finding some belief subscribed to by a small portion of that religion and ascribing it to the whole set. Or you take some aspect of a religion's writings, interpret it in a way the followers don't, and use your own perverted interpretation to denegrate the religion.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    As I have said many times before, you can believe what you want but don't be saying I am wrong based on some misrepresentation of what you think I believe or what you have read in Dawkins and Dennet when that is the only thing you have read about religion. They don't know what religious people (especially Christians) believe either.
    Strawman.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    There is, apparently, enough evidence to sway 80 or more percent of the people of the world, so it would appear that whatever you think is not compelling evidence is, in fact, quite compelling.
    Appeal to popularity.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    You obviously do not understand the rules of evidence. You have presented no scientific information, zilch, nada, nothing. I did, at least, in the form of a scientific study into the nature of religious populations.
    Appeal to ridicule. Appeal to popularity.


    ____________________________

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    You say I have used logical fallicies -- point one out.
    Done. What now? You lose.
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    "Secondarily, my point was not that people are born believing in God, only that once people reach an age to make a choice, they choose to believe in the existence of some supernatural essense."

    Actually this certainly isn't true for most people. By the time they reach the age of reason (say 15-30 years old...sometime never), the religion they were raised in is so ingrained into their emotional states, views of the world, relationships with their loved ones etc that they never reach the point of making a choice--it's not even a consideration or a completely unthinkable one.
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    None of those has anything to do with logic; they have only to do with your disagreement with my statements.

    Do you know any rules of logic? Your claims have absolutely nothing to do with logic.

    Your claims challenge the validity, relevance or accuracy of the statement, not their logic. Even if every challenge you offer were true (which they aren't), you have not made one challenge based on any rule of logic.

    You, sir inow, are the master of strawman arguments which involves addressing something someone else has said and misrepresenting it so that your addressment does not actually address what was originally said.

    In order to show a strawman argument, it would be necessary for you to point out what was previously stated and how it was altered so that my response does not address what was originally said. Just because I said something that you find objectionable, does not make it a strawman argument.

    It seems obvious to me that you understand neither logic nor strawman arguments. These are terms you pull out and use indiscriminantly because you thing they sound good.,

    To address a few of the things you claimed:

    daytonturner wrote:
    I do not see where that indoctrination is any worse that the indoctrination of Dawkins...
    Appeal to incredulity and equivocation.
    I have no idea what you are claiming here. What is an appeal to incredulity? ARe you coining a new phrase? I see nothing equivocational here. I plainly state that the two types of indoctrination are essentially the same. How is that an equivocation?

    daytonturner wrote:
    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above.
    Strawman.
    This is better labelled something of a non sequiter (translation: it does not follow) in that it does not really address anything that anyone said. It was a statement out of the blue. There may be a more appropriate term for this type of comment, but it is not, under any definition of the term, a strawman argument.

    Not much sense in going on. You don't really seem to know the proper applications of the words you use. You claim my objections to a thought are ad homenom -- another term which you use indiscriminantly and inappropriately most of the time.

    "Strawman" is a term of art in law which actually refers to something else from which the term strawman argument was derived. It would be more appropriate for you to use the term "strawman argument." A strawman was a person who "bought" property from someone in a sham deal so that it could not be attached as the result of a debt or suit and then "sold" it back when the heat was off, so to speak.

    If I say something is a stupid idea, that is not an ad homenon statement as you seem to think. If I say a person is stupid, that is an ad homenom statement. If I say something is a stupid idea and someone is so personally invested in the idea tht they take it personal, it is a problem for them, not me. The proper response would be, "Why do you think it is a stupid idea?" not, "Why are you calling me stupid?" Unfortunately, many people on this forum take disagreement as an attack on their person.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Ahh... Dayton. You probably could not have put forth a more telling response. Thanks for reinforcing my point so clearly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Promethius said:

    I think that's a reasonable point which deserves credence. The problem comes when you ask us to disprove God and then define God in such a way as to make all our proofs invalid.
    But that is what you folks do, also.

    Then we are in agreement, God is undefinable.

    Unless you claim to know the mind of God? (an example of an ad hominem argument, as most faithful would not claim to know the mind of God)

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Promethius also asks if anything would change my mind. Well, dying and not waking up in the afterlife would be rather convincing. Unfortunately, I would not be aware of it. Whereas, if you die and do wake up in the afterlife, you will not have an opportunity to change your mind. At this point, I cannot conceive of anything on this side of death that would convince me -- even if God Himself came down to Earth (again) and made an announcement on CNN and Fox that He does not exist.

    If belief in God is entirely faith based, and evidence irrelevent to that faith (hope that's not a strawman), than why are we even having this debate? We require evidence before we will change our minds to believe in God. You will not defer to any evidence disproving God. There is nothing left we can say to one another.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    saul said:

    point out a logical fallacy? yea i already did that once in this post, and skinwalker has pointed out the exact same fallacy in an earlier post by you. as for my success in proving to you that there is no scientific evidence for god, well that's all in vain because you just stated that there clearly is no such evidence. i didn't know i was preaching to the choir.
    So far you have only made the charge that I have said something that is a logically fallacious (that is, illogical) without citing the actual quote and what is illogical about it.

    You have seemingly agreed that there is "no evidence" of God. Unless you are in possession of all the knowledge that exists -- that which the rest of us are collectively aware of and all of that which none of us has found yet -- you cannot logically make this claim. Even if you knew 99.9 percent of all the knowledge ever to be known now and in the future, you cannot preclude the possibility that the proof of God exists in that .1 percent. So any claim that there is "no evidence" of God is illogical.

    You could logically say, "There is no extant evidence which convinces me to believe in God." But even that does not take into account that the extant evidence is sufficient to convince most of the rest of us to believe in God.

    This is not proof that God exists, but just that there is enough evidence to convince a huge portion of humanity to so believe. If you choose to reject that very same evidence, that is your prerogative. You have every right here in the West to come to that conclusion. Not sure you are allowed to openly aver that choice in some areas of the world.

    Anyway, I still would like for you to quote some illogical statement I have made and show me how it is illogical. Again, just because you disagree with something I may have said does not make it illogical.
    well i would oblige you and quote you where you have made some fallacious statements, but inow seems to have gotten every last one. i had thought there were more than that but i guess i'm remembering some of our past conversations.

    although i don't think he pointed out a few fallacies within this particular post. you say that because we don't know everything that we must assume the knowledge we don't have will lead us to believe in a god. why? it is reasonable to believe that the future knowledge will support the present knowledge rather than disprove it.

    of course, that isn't to say it is impossible. i've never said that it is completely impossible for there to be any type of deity.

    additionally, you keep on appealing to the fact that a lot of people are religious. but after i have pointed out multiple times that they are not religious simply because of evidence(my very first post on this topic highlighted the main reason for most religious belief). and you have not refuted that claim anywhere. others have also pointed out how this very assumption is a fallacy.

    so, disregarding all the logical errors that inow pointed out from your previous post, the very post you make asking me to point out errors in your logic contains two such logical errors. do you read your posts before you submit them?

    p.s. when i stated that i agreed there is no evidence of god the direct quote was

    so, i do fail to find scientific evidence for god? well now, i think that's pretty conclusive. everyone here agrees: there is no scientific evidence for god. finally.
    now, i can see how you might have misinterpreted that to think i said that there is no possible evidence for god anywhere, but that isn't what i meant. what i meant is that out of all the available scientific evidence, none of it supports the claim that there is a god. if there is a god then there is some evidence somewhere out there that we don't know about. but because we don't know about it, unless you have some magical(perhaps your god gave it to you?) insight into the reality of the universe, then - for all intents and purposes - the evidence simply doesn't exist.
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    first off, my apologies for a double post. when i had created my last post i had not yet seen what follows:

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    None of those has anything to do with logic; they have only to do with your disagreement with my statements.

    Do you know any rules of logic? Your claims have absolutely nothing to do with logic.

    Your claims challenge the validity, relevance or accuracy of the statement, not their logic. Even if every challenge you offer were true (which they aren't), you have not made one challenge based on any rule of logic.

    You, sir inow, are the master of strawman arguments which involves addressing something someone else has said and misrepresenting it so that your addressment does not actually address what was originally said.

    In order to show a strawman argument, it would be necessary for you to point out what was previously stated and how it was altered so that my response does not address what was originally said. Just because I said something that you find objectionable, does not make it a strawman argument.

    It seems obvious to me that you understand neither logic nor strawman arguments. These are terms you pull out and use indiscriminantly because you thing they sound good.,

    To address a few of the things you claimed:

    daytonturner wrote:
    I do not see where that indoctrination is any worse that the indoctrination of Dawkins...
    Appeal to incredulity and equivocation.
    I have no idea what you are claiming here. What is an appeal to incredulity? ARe you coining a new phrase? I see nothing equivocational here. I plainly state that the two types of indoctrination are essentially the same. How is that an equivocation?

    daytonturner wrote:
    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above.
    Strawman.
    This is better labelled something of a non sequiter (translation: it does not follow) in that it does not really address anything that anyone said. It was a statement out of the blue. There may be a more appropriate term for this type of comment, but it is not, under any definition of the term, a strawman argument.

    Not much sense in going on. You don't really seem to know the proper applications of the words you use. You claim my objections to a thought are ad homenom -- another term which you use indiscriminantly and inappropriately most of the time.

    "Strawman" is a term of art in law which actually refers to something else from which the term strawman argument was derived. It would be more appropriate for you to use the term "strawman argument." A strawman was a person who "bought" property from someone in a sham deal so that it could not be attached as the result of a debt or suit and then "sold" it back when the heat was off, so to speak.

    If I say something is a stupid idea, that is not an ad homenon statement as you seem to think. If I say a person is stupid, that is an ad homenom statement. If I say something is a stupid idea and someone is so personally invested in the idea tht they take it personal, it is a problem for them, not me. The proper response would be, "Why do you think it is a stupid idea?" not, "Why are you calling me stupid?" Unfortunately, many people on this forum take disagreement as an attack on their person.
    now then, you are suggesting that inow's statements did not accurately describe your arguements when he reffered to them as logical fallacies? well, i believe there is a list somewhere of most(if not all) logical fallacies, right?

    oh, there it is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies

    well, let's just take a look at some of inow's claims about your fallacious statements. perhaps not all of them are right, but you didn't ask someone to point out all of your fallacies, just a couple. so here's a couple:

    Quote Originally Posted by inow
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Your entire view of religion is so jaded with mis-information, dis-information and just plain lack of any reasonable basis of knowledge, that discussion is impossible.
    What are you, a sophomore in high school?
    Appeal to ridicule.
    spot on inow, here's the definition:

    Appeal to ridicule: a specific type of appeal to emotion where an argument is made by presenting the opponent's argument in a way that makes it appear ridiculous
    this particular response(the one by dayton that inow highlighted) makes the arguement it responds to seem rediculous based on making the author of the response seem like an un-trustworthy source. this particular arguement also falls under:

    Ad hominem: attacking the person instead of the argument.
    if you disagree, feel free to. however i can assure you that calling someone a highschool sophmore and stating that their entire worldview is so jaded they can't even have a discussion is most certainly a personal attack.

    now, what about those particular examples which you responded to saying they were not in fact fallacious, here's one:

    daytonturner wrote:
    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above.
    Strawman.
    now, here i agree with you that inow should have included what you were responding to when calling it a strawman arguement. if only so that it would be easier to discuss when you inevitably cried foul. i'm lazy, i'll admit it. so i'm not going to go back pages and pages in this discussion to find what you were responding to.

    however, this entire arguement is based on the arguement from morality, a boldfaced logical error:


    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=define%3A+argument+from+morality
    The argument from morality is one of many arguments for the existence of God. This argument comes in different forms, all aiming to demonstrate God’s existence from some observations about morality in the world.
    now, if you'd like to go into how morality really is a good basis for arguement, you can start a topic on that. but it is generally considered a fallacy, and thus is a flawed arguement.
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    When people are not religious, it is generally because they find the claims uncompelling and so choose not to accept them, in much the same way that claims about the existence of santa claus are not compelling. Dayton DID, in fact, strawman peoples reasons for being non-religious by claiming it was because "they want to party and do drugs" and whatever other crap he said.

    He misrepresented the position of nonbelievers. He gave an inaccurate reason for their lack of religion, and then focused his argument on that inaccurate representation.

    It was without even a shadow of a doubt a strawman fallacy.

    I am perfectly willing to defend anything I've claimed, and will have no problem admitting fault in my suggestion if such fault is demonstrated. However, I think you'll find I was pretty much correct overall in my summary when you subject it to scrutiny. Cheers.
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    Lynx Fox said:

    Actually this certainly isn't true for most people. By the time they reach the age of reason (say 15-30 years old...sometime never), the religion they were raised in is so ingrained into their emotional states, views of the world, relationships with their loved ones etc that they never reach the point of making a choice--it's not even a consideration or a completely unthinkable one.
    Actually, what you say here does not quite agree with studies conducted over the past nearly 100 years, In the 1920's, studies began showing that the people in the age group you cite (15-30) were leaving the church in alarming numbers. Some Christian denominations, over the years, were losing as many as 90 percent of their youthful congregants. The average is less, around 60-75 percent.

    It is after the age of about 30 that they begin to return to the church, so the second half of your statement couild be at least somewhat accurate -- that the early teachings become so ingrained into our limbic value system, that it is difficult to eliminate them completely even if we are able to intellectually overrule them. It could also be that our intellect begins to agree with the limbic values.

    If the term limbic system is foreign to you, briefly, a part of the limbic system involves the early learning processes in which values and patterns of behavior are developed without the help or hinderance of the intellect. The pattens are instilled and cease to develop as our intellect develops (near puberty) and begins to challenge and question those earlier instilled values. This is only a small aspect of the complex limbic system but it does have a lot to do with establishing our life values.
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    saul said:
    you say that because we don't know everything that we must assume the knowledge we don't have will lead us to believe in a god.
    Now this is a classic example of a straw argument. I said no such thing. I said, in fact, just the opposite.

    I said that in the scope of the knowledge we do not know, we cannot eliminate the possibility that what is there may or may not support what we have previously concluded based on the knowledge we do have.

    That which we do not know may or may not confirm conclusions we currently hold. We cannnot preclude either possibility no matter how infitessimal the amount of unknown knowledge is. If you cannot understand this simplistic concept of logic, discussion with you is senseless.
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    i agree with you there. the knowledge we do not have may or may not support you or i in the future. however the knowledge we have now is what we can actually use in a discussion. i've said multiple times that it is possible(although in my mind highly unlikely) that there is a god. just as it is possible that there is no such thing as subatomic particles. however, the first isn't supported by current evidence and thus we have no reason to believe it will be supported later on, and the latter has been so thuroughly tested that we have no reason to believe there will be evidence against it in the future.

    however, the type of reasoning that i have a problem with is (and forgive me if i paraphrase here) when someone presents an arguement that all religious claims are true such as you did when skinwalker asked "which religious claims are true then?" and you stated "all of them. prove me wrong."

    do you see how that claim goes directly against what you just said?
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    saul asked:
    now then, you are suggesting that inow's statements did not accurately describe your arguements when he reffered to them as logical fallacies? well, i believe there is a list somewhere of most(if not all) logical fallacies, right?
    What I said was that inow's characterizations of my statements, even if 100 percent spot on, would not address their logic or lack thereof.

    After reading inow's analysis of my "reason for non-belief" comment, I would tend to agree that there is some strawman argument elements there in that it is an over generalization which might not apply to all atheists. And generalizations do fall into a category of logic in that it is illogical to apply a generality to all elements of a set in view of the fact that there may be exceptions. It is also illogical to draw a generalization from too small a sample of the elements of a set.

    However, I might point out that we all "want" to do the listed things and we all do those things either in actual physical practice or in our mind. The difference is that some realize that God will forgive these errors of conduct and judgment. Others think there is no need to curtail such activities nor do they even consider them improper, counter productive behaviors. God becomes an impediment and by rejecting God, the impediment is removed.

    Some people agreeing that such behavior is improper, reject God feeling that if they can eliminate God from the equation, the behavior may be continued with impunity. It is presumptuous of me to think that I can discern the reasons specific individuals might have for not believing in God. And, to the best of my knowledge, no reputable study has been conducted on this issue nor do I believe anyone would admit to this reason even if it were the underlying reason.

    It is not a matter of whether we participate or desire to participated in these behaviors, it is a matter of whether we recognize them as improper and how we respond if we agree they are improper.
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    saul said:

    however, the type of reasoning that i have a problem with is (and forgive me if i paraphrase here) when someone presents an arguement that all religious claims are true such as you did when skinwalker asked "which religious claims are true then?" and you stated "all of them. prove me wrong."

    do you see how that claim goes directly against what you just said?
    I don't see how you can seriously believe I was actually claiming all religious claims are true. Most religions are mutually exclusive in that if the claims of one are accurate, all opposing claims must necessarily be inaccurate.

    You take things too literally, perhaps not understanding literary techniques. This was a silly answer to what I considered a silly question and I am pretty sure that skinwalker understood that I had no intention of actually trying to answer an unanswerable question.
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    well that is an important issue. i highly recommend you start a topic for it somewhere. but it's not the topic at hand.

    the topic at hand in the "disproving religion" topic, is which way the evidence points; to religion, or away from it.

    the moral arguement simply is not a good arguement for religion unless you can prove the premise that a transcendant morality exists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Lynx Fox said:

    Actually this certainly isn't true for most people. By the time they reach the age of reason (say 15-30 years old...sometime never), the religion they were raised in is so ingrained into their emotional states, views of the world, relationships with their loved ones etc that they never reach the point of making a choice--it's not even a consideration or a completely unthinkable one.
    Actually, what you say here does not quite agree with studies conducted over the past nearly 100 years, In the 1920's, studies began showing that the people in the age group you cite (15-30) were leaving the church in alarming numbers. Some Christian denominations, over the years, were losing as many as 90 percent of their youthful congregants. The average is less, around 60-75 percent.

    It is after the age of about 30 that they begin to return to the church, so the second half of your statement couild be at least somewhat accurate -- that the early teachings become so ingrained into our limbic value system, that it is difficult to eliminate them completely even if we are able to intellectually overrule them. It could also be that our intellect begins to agree with the limbic values.

    If the term limbic system is foreign to you, briefly, a part of the limbic system involves the early learning processes in which values and patterns of behavior are developed without the help or hinderance of the intellect. The pattens are instilled and cease to develop as our intellect develops (near puberty) and begins to challenge and question those earlier instilled values. This is only a small aspect of the complex limbic system but it does have a lot to do with establishing our life values.
    That doesn't even begin to address the question. You discussed studies that show people leaving the church while I'm referencing your claim that most people choice to believe in god. They aren't the same thing. And while I completely agree that some Christian denominations have trouble keeping their flock--that doesn't mean those leaving are becoming atheist or even those who stay ever give the question of god's existence any serious thought. In the US without a doubt most continue to believe in a divine being of some sort even if they seldom attend church. From my personal experiences living and working with Middle East Muslims their willingness to question the existence or god is even less common.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Quote Originally Posted by inow
    daytonturner wrote:
    The main reason most people are not religious is because they want to do some of the things religions say are improper, counterproductive activities. Most non-religious people want to do drugs or have promiscuous or homosexual sex, or drink alchol to excess, carouse, lie, cheat, steal, or all of the above.
    Strawman.
    This is better labelled something of a non sequiter...
    I could be that as well. Many logical fallacies are non-sequitur. But, in the case of the quote above, it was very clearly a classic strawman argument, which you seem so adept at.

    You mischaracterize the positions of the non-superstitious and their reasons for rejecting superstition in order to create a more easily defeated argument. From the point of view of someone whose superstitions are driven by a need to "do good" or "adhere" to certain societal norms, rejection of superstition in order to reject it's taboos is an easy argument to defend superstition.

    It, of course, doesn't follow that adherence to religious superstition prevents sex, intoxication, drug abuse, lying, cheating, theft, etc. Nor does it follow that the non-superstitious are more prone to these societal taboos than superstitious adherents.
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    skinwalker i agree with you. however try to understand the position of the person you are argueing against.

    dayton has already stated that the religious do these things as well. although he probably thinks they do it less frequently. his reasoning as to why people leave the church to do these things is so they don't feel like they're letting god down.

    essentially he's saying that the religious know what is right and wrong, but sometimes do bad things anyways while the non-religious don't even accept what he views as morally right and wrong.

    the base arguement is one that strawmans people's reasons for being atheist, presents a bare assertion fallacy by asserting that his religion's moral code is universal, followed by a fallacy of neccesity in asserting that because there is a moral code there must be a moral code maker(god).
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    It's almost more like he is saying the only way to really have a moral and ethical code is to be religious. That feels more like the position he has, otherwise I have no idea why he would even attempt to make some of the claims he's made.
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    i'm not sure you're right. and i'm reluctant to put words in his mouth. however i find that many religious people do have that position. i don't see how anyone can think that. everyone follows some moral code.
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    true, but if you believe that morals are derived from beliefs, then it stands to reason that those who wish to have a free conscience while performing morally reprehensible actions would abandon their morals (their beliefs) in favor of committing what they would otherwise perceive as a sin. I see it as logically consistent given the worldview, though not really based in reality. Atheists don't have a set standard of morals that they can derive from some ancient source, and as such can hold whatever moral tenet they choose with no fear of supernatural reprisal after death. It's a shaky position, and one I clearly don't hold, but I can understand the reasoning behind it.
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    i fear we have strayed off topic.

    i would offer more evidence against religion but i think we've put enough nails in the coffin. unless dayton or some other religious believer replies quickly i'm afraid this topic is finished.
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    saul said:
    would offer more evidence against religion but i think we've put enough nails in the coffin. unless dayton or some other religious believer replies quickly i'm afraid this topic is finished.
    Sorry, I was away for a while. I think you vastly overestimated the weight of the "evidence" which you think you have offered. Your arguement, brought down to its lowest common denominator, is that since no one can prove God exists, that is conclusive evidence that He does not exist.

    While you obviously disbelieve in a spiritual, infinite, not physical world, I suspect it probable that you do believe there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe even though there is not one scintilla of evidence that such life exists.

    You merely conclude, ala Carl Sagan, that in the "billions and billions" of (undiscovered) earthlike planets in the universe, one of them must have produced intelligent life.

    If I were to apply your argument to the premise of other intelligent life in the universe, I could counter with the argument that since no one has presented any evidence of such life, it is proof that no such life exists.

    And, since you did not start the topic, it is hardly within your prerogative to declare it closed.
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    the arguements presented by other may boil down to merely that(i disagree that they do). and in that case your arguement is completely valid.

    my disagreement with religion however is summed up in one of my first posts. i stated(paraphrasing here) that there are two kinds of gods you can beleve in. gods that interfere in the universe, and gods that made it but let it go according to the physical laws.

    the first belief asserts that a god has interfered with the world multiple times(like in the bible). this is a prediction by those believers that there is physical evidence of their god doing things in the world. if the christian religions are right, we should see physical evidence that the earth is only some 6000 years old, intellegent life was present within a week of the earth's creation, a massive flood covered the entire world with water and someone built a giant ark and brought two of all the animals of current times into that ark and let them all off in one place. the prediction that these events happened based on religious texts clearly contradicts reality and thus we know that at least one whole group of religions is wrong(the abrahamic ones).

    the second type of belief in a deity says that god doesn't actually do anything. it says that it created the world and just sits back to watch. i could not possibly prove or disprove such a belief, and i'm not sure anyone ever will be able to.

    so, disregarding the second type of belief - which i consider a moot arguement as it is not a testable theory - my disagreement with religious belief is because they all make predictions about the world that we know are wrong.

    as far as the belief in intellegent life being present, i don't claim to know that it is. i personally think that it is likely, however i don't claim that it is an absolute truth. that is the only real difference between my belief that intellegent life exists outside earth and your belief in the christian god. neither of us have good evidence but i admit i could very well be wrong. of course that's only true if you believe in the second type of god that some christians believe in, if you believe in the first type then there is clear evidence against that idea where there is none for or against intellegent life outside our solar system.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I think you vastly overestimated the weight of the "evidence" which you think you have offered. Your arguement, brought down to its lowest common denominator, is that since no one can prove God exists, that is conclusive evidence that He does not exist.
    Close, but not quite. This is essentially a strawman, since the actual position is NOT that lack of evidence is "conclusive evidence that god does not exist." The position is that the lack of evidence means there's no good reason to assume he does.
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    saul said:
    the first belief asserts that a god has interfered with the world multiple times(like in the bible). this is a prediction by those believers that there is physical evidence of their god doing things in the world. if the christian religions are right, we should see physical evidence that the earth is only some 6000 years old, intellegent life was present within a week of the earth's creation, a massive flood covered the entire world with water and someone built a giant ark and brought two of all the animals of current times into that ark and let them all off in one place.
    Your assertion that God has "interfered" is merely you own personal characterization of the effects of God's interactions with the physical world -- a characterization which is of your own manufacture. This is called spinning. We cannot know what the world would be like if God had not intervened. It would be my position that His intevention has been for the betterment of mankind.

    Not all Christians (or Jews for that matter) believe in Young Earth. There is ample evidence throughout the world that massive, catastrophic floods such as the Noahic flood occurred. Many Christians do not understand the Noahic flood as actually being worldwide at the same time and consider the story allegorical rather than historical. But as long as you cling to your belief that ALL Jews and Christians believe these stories as historical recountings, you are no more open to discussion than they are.

    saul said:
    the prediction that these events happened based on religious texts clearly contradicts reality and thus we know that at least one whole group of religions is wrong(the abrahamic ones).
    There must be something lost between what you were thinking and what you wrote; predictions come prior to an event not in the recounting of them. The fact that you don't think these events occurred is not proof that a whole group of religions is wrong. It is merely proof that you don't believe they occured -- a believe based on your rejection of God. If God exists, these things would be no more difficult for Him than you sitting and changing channels on your TV set. Your position is based on the idea that since God does not exist, these thing could not have happened. If you believed in God, you would agree that these things were possible.

    saul said:
    my disagreement with religious belief is because they all make predictions about the world that we know are wrong.
    I think this is related to the other quote. How do you know predictions are wrong if they have not occurred -- yet. I don't think you are talking about predictions so much as you are the reports of events as recorded in the Bible. It is very difficult to respond to such a overreaching charge. It would be like me saying there are hundreds of things wrong in the theory of evolution without naming them or naming only one.

    If God exists, there is nothing recounted in the Bible that would be beyond His capacity to accomplish. You do not disprove the existence of God by saying you don't agree that there was catestophic flood when the evidence available shows there were numerous catastrophic floods. Since you don't believe in God, I can understand that you don't think these things happened.

    inow said:
    Close, but not quite. This is essentially a strawman, since the actual position is NOT that lack of evidence is "conclusive evidence that god does not exist." The position is that the lack of evidence means there's no good reason to assume he does.
    The fact that you disagree with my assesment is not make it a strawman argument. Plus you continue to use the term "strawman" alone which is not the proper term to suggest a strawman argument. Why should I respect your position when you do not even use the proper terms?
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    You are misrepresenting the position of others, and the fact that I disagree with you overall, and regularly with your assessments, does not mean that is the sole source of my challenge toward you.

    I really couldn't care less if you respect my position. You remain consistently wrong and your posts laden with logical fallacies.
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    inow said:
    You are misrepresenting the position of others,
    Somehow it does not seem that you object at all when atheists misrepresent what Christians (or other relgions) believe and what the Bible says, but you rail against inkind responses. I would suggest this is because you agree with their generalities while disagreeing with mine. You don't often address my arguments but, rather, seem content to pick out some irrelavant comment and label them with some pajoritive insult as though that is a legitimate way to discuss.
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    How is you totally misrepresenting the thoughts of non-believers and then attacking that misrepresentation "irrelevant?"
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