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PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 5:00 am 
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Only one religous user of this site? Or only one prepared to stick their neck on the line?


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 10:28 pm 
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I count at least two.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 11:09 pm 
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"That's pretty good. It sounds like you have a 99% understanding of atheism now. That is exactly why one does not believe in god, because there is no more evidence for that than there is for ghosts. We don't have absolutes. But because the lack of evidence makes the existence of god so low, it is virtually 0." - Ironman

There's still a big difference between someone who says "I don't believe in God." and someone who says "There is no God." When someone says "There is no God.", they're expressing a belief.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 12:28 am 
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Matt Z wrote:
There's still a big difference between someone who says "I don't believe in God." and someone who says "There is no God." When someone says "There is no God.", they're expressing a belief.


Throughout history, science has proven that what religion has said to be true is actually false.
Gravity
The Geography of the Earth
Adam & Eve
Talking snakes(which basically proves Adam and Eve never existed)
Virgin Births
The list go's on and on.
What else do you think they could be wrong about....?

I should also say that yes, science has been proven wrong... by science though.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 12:55 am 
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My point is that it's impossible to prove or disprove the existance of God, or many gods for that matter. People believe whatever they choose to believe.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 1:00 am 
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Likewise, disproving the bible is only possible if one subscibes to a relatively narrow literal enterpretation.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 1:33 am 
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My point is that it's impossible to prove or disprove the existance of God, or many gods for that matter. People believe whatever they choose to believe.

I agree that there is no way to prove/disprove this assertion, but you can estimate the probability that one of the assertions is true.

To me there is a different between someone who says "I know there is no god" and "all of my experience and the evidence I have gathered from the world leads me to conclude that to a very high probability, there is no god".

Most atheists do not express the same certainty that is often touted by theists. Theists seem to "just know" and like to use this confidence in god's existence to somehow poke fun of the atheists that can only "venture a best guess" and "merely think" that there is no God.

This to me, is an essential difference, religious people have faith that is not based on any empirical evidence; "you just have to have faith" is one of many favorite sayings of a theist. Any time an atheist sees this he is probably rolling his eyes because to them it is a way of saying "we don't have a good explanation so we like to sound better than you".

These kind of certainties by theists make me question their ability to be objective and rational in other matters, which is why I don't like religion. If someone has irrational thoughts to explain one part of their life, I expect them to do so in other parts as well.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 9:58 am 
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Everyone has beliefs and values, whether religious or secular. I don't see how your bias against theists, is any different than a Christian who's biased against Jews, Muslims and/or Atheists.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 12:36 pm 
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Matt Z wrote:
"That's pretty good. It sounds like you have a 99% understanding of atheism now. That is exactly why one does not believe in god, because there is no more evidence for that than there is for ghosts. We don't have absolutes. But because the lack of evidence makes the existence of god so low, it is virtually 0." - Ironman

There's still a big difference between someone who says "I don't believe in God." and someone who says "There is no God." When someone says "There is no God.", they're expressing a belief.


Just substitute "god" for "fairies". Then you will see it is just semantics and does not imply absolute belief.
"I don't believe in fairies." and "There are no fairies." both look just fine. It's the same thing with god. It is just a simplified way of expressing nonexistence in a practical and/or virtual way. It is not intended to be absolute. Because we can't be sure in absolute terms there is no god and no fairies.

Look up Bertrand Russel and his celestial teapot for a full explanation and analogy.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 12:46 pm 
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Matt Z wrote:
Everyone has beliefs and values, whether religious or secular. I don't see how your bias against theists, is any different than a Christian who's biased against Jews, Muslims and/or Atheists.


Values yes, but not beliefs. That is a straw man. We don't have any beliefs. Atheism is a lack of belief, not a negative belief system.

We do not have a bias against theists. We think their beliefs are fantasy and we may be appalled at the behavior of some of them, but we have no bias against the people themselves.

Other theists may have a bias against each other though. That is because they believe the other person is wrong and is not following the true religion (theirs in other words). They then consider those people bad and maybe dehumanize them. Religion fosters an "us vs them" mentality. A sort of black and white tribalism.

Atheists in general do not do that. In fact secular humanists view all people as special or important, or at least strive for that.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 1:29 pm 
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What about what I said makes me bias?

A critical evaluation that happens to find some group of people different than others is not bias, it is an evaluation of them based on their thoughts/actions.

It is not like I am a Christian saying I am right and everyone else is wrong, when the Jews are doing the exact same thing when neither of them have good evidence for their position.

You may say "well you are constructing your evaluation in such a way that the theists have no chance to be equal with the atheists". So first of all I would say that my evaluation is what everyone applies to just about every other aspect of life besides religion. Next I would say that my evaluation is perfectly fair: if theists could depend their position with some facts (real facts that can be tested, again the real life definition), then I would be forced to consider their position as possible. Unfortunately, no religious person has ever done this to the satisfaction of any logical and informed person. You need to be both logical and informed because otherwise you could make a logical decision with poor information, which may or may not be culpable.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 2:40 pm 
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Your main argument seems to be that if something can't be proven, or hasn't been proven, then it doesn't exist. I simply don't agree with this logic.

For example, science has yet to prove the existance of inteligent life on other planets. This does not however disprove it's existance.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 2:57 pm 
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"Values yes, but not beliefs. That is a straw man. We don't have any beliefs." - Ironman

Perhaps you're misunderstanding what I mean by beliefs. ... In my estimation, any opinion based on values is a belief. For example, if you think that stealing is wrong, that's a belief. It doesn't matter if this belief comes from religion, society, family, etc.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 3:39 pm 
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My argument is if something has not been proven or can't be proven and cant be observed, then I am going to live my life as though it is irrelevant. If something new is discovered, I will amend my way of thinking.

I don't think stealing is wrong, I observe that if people steal it creates a less suitable society than one in which people do not steal. Therefore I don't think stealing is wrong; I think it is a bad choice given what I know about society. I do not believe in right and wrong the way religious people do, there are only good choices and bad choices, or more appropriately, good choices and better choices that lead to better survival.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 6:13 pm 
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Ryan and Matt, watch Religilous lol


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