One thing that that really get's to me is theist who think they have the right to not be offended and all people who enable this behaviour.
I find it hard to find a theist who will have an open discussion about why they believe in a personal god at all or why they think their god is real and all the other ones aren't. Yesterday I remarked on the hypocritical nature of the followers of xtianity and was met with no argument as to why what I said was wrong but that it was rude. When I asked why it was considered rude I was told that I should have respect for peoples religion. I disagree, I'll respect your right to have religion, by all means believe whatever crackpot fairy tales you like but if you are not willing to be offended and stand up for what you believe in then you need to take a serious look into why that is.
Most of the theists I know don't argue because they do not even care weather or not their god exists, they go to church on Sunday and go about their lives as if they were Atheists. But I know there are theists out there who might care but are too afraid of being offended by talking to an evil non believer so they just tell you that you are rude.
Are people just being too polite or am i really too insensitive?
This is where your fatal flaw lies, Ray - you suggested earlier that most atheists really don't understand the meaning of atheism, but I maintain that it is you, who do not. You said, "the names Christianity and Atheism immediately imply conviction in a belief system," and that, for atheism at least, is entirely false.
Atheism involves a LACK of a belief system, not a conviction in one. "But don't you BELIEVE god doesn't exist?" you would likely ask. And I would say, no, it doesn't have anything to do with belief - god simply does not exist until I can see, hear, smell touch or taste him, or until someone brings me some irrefutable evidence. I feel the same way about leprechauns. but I DO like their Lucky Charms. (They're magically delicious!)
Oyé, Ramón - I found this specifically with you in mind:
I don't have to use science to refute a god... There is simply nothing there to suggest that there is one?
Who is to say that a 'god' is necessary for the existence of this universe? Who came up with that assumption? You can step even further back and ask. Does this universe have a cause? and then ask. What is it? There's nothing to suggest that the cause has to fall into the very vague definition of 'god'..much less a more specific and narrow version of that definition. (a particular religions definition of god)
One can easily choose not to accept ANY of the god proposals as viable explanations for our existence. Those that do not accept any of these god proposals are atheist.
This has to be a troll but anyway.
Atheism, by name, is the belief that God does not exist and because the non existence of God cannot be proven Atheism relies on an unproven assumption, a faith.
There is your first mistake Atheism by definition is simply a lack of belief in a god. It is not the belief in no god. You see the difference?
One reasoning of the existence of God that i find quite compelling is Thomas Aqunas' 5 proofs. If you are not familiar with them, i will outline them briefly. What is interesting to note is that although they rely heavily on assumptions, they are extremely diffucult to refute, the first three at least.
There are your (and Aquinis') next 5 mistakes. The first mover/first cause arguments are contradicting arguments and Question begging. To say that Atheist argue something from nothing is a straw man fallacy. Also where exactly does one make the leap to "there must be a god" from this argument? Evolution theory explains the early humans' need for the concept of god for our survival as a species until we outgrow this need intellectually. The cause for design argument is in itself wrong, why make the assumption that everything in existence has a design at all?
If you are really not a troll you have a massive pile of reading to do!
Sorry to say this is not a troll and believe me i have done my fair share of reading. I don't think you are completely understanding the point of my statements.
Saying that atheism is a lack of belief is a general statement. If you do not know whether or not a god exists then you are an agnostic. If you claim that there is no god and and do not believe that there is a god you are an atheist. The prefix "a" actually means "no" or "not".
What also needs to be clarified is that Aquinas' "proofs" are simply the first steps to recognizing that there is no scientific or reasonable explanation for the first cause of the universe. I even admitted earlier that the fourth and fifth "proofs" were no longer as consequential because they can now be explained by science, but i in no way attempt to suggest that these "proofs" explicitly prove the existence of god only leave you with a choice: To believe that a god was the cause for the universe, that there is no cause for the universe, or that the cause for the universe is incomprehensible by man at this point. Please realize that these "proofs" are not really proofs in the literal sense but are questions that must be asked when deciding whether or not there is a god.
I also find it necessary to say that we should be careful when using scientific theories , theories are essentially unproven hypotheses based on inconclusive research, these theories are by no means wrong but are at present without conclusive evidence.
If all you need to be an atheist is not to be a theist, this means you must be convinced that there is no god. Because there is no way to prove that god does not exist it is therefore a belief system centered around a central unprovable belief.
That would make you a troll... because I have explained how your definition of atheism is wrong and I've read others explaining it to you as well... but you ignore it and continue with your same failed argument.
However I don't agree with you calling yourself an agnostic atheist or suggesting that i am an agnostic theist,
I don't care if you don't agree. I am right and you are still desperately trying to label atheism as a belief system. It is not and that has been made abundantly clear to you.
Hell is proof your god does not exist. It is in clear contradiction of what your religion claims about your god. No matter how you try to spin it, your god is 100% responsible for hell and everyone that ends up there. Your god and hell make a perfect square circle.
The existence of just 1 atheist disproves the claims made about your god. Your god wants everyone to believe, and he is in 100% control of the life experience for every human on this planet. God knows exactly what life experience every person needs to lead us to him yet he only gives these experiences to some. If he gives this to some why does he not give them to all? How is it fair not to?
Your god being hidden is proof he does not exist. The claims made about your god are in direct contradiction to the fact that your god hides himself. There is no good reason to keep hidden.... if you think there is, give me your best single reason and I'll explain why you are wrong.
Haven't you heard, Ben? - god works in mysterious ways --
Ray is using an English dictionary to provide a definition of "a," to mean, "not," while my definition is directly from the original Latin, meaning, "without." When in Rome -- (If you're going to use Latin words, use Latin definitions!)
RE: "The prefix "a" actually means "no" or "not"." - Incorrect, it's from the Latin and means, "without," "sin," "sans," "ain't got no."
RE: "be careful when using scientific theories , theories are essentially unproven hypotheses based on inconclusive research, these theories are by no means wrong but are at present without conclusive evidence."
I really rolled on the floor when I read that - religion consists of guesswork, based on feelings, without any evidence whatsoever, or, as Robert A. Heinlein put it, "Theology is never any help; it is searching in a dark cellar at midnight for a black cat that isn't there."
RE: "Atheism relies on an unproven assumption, a faith" - not at all, Ray, you tried this on the other thread, verbatim, and it didn't fly there either.
I have no feeling one way or the other about pink unicorns, which would make me, "a-unicorn," but if someone were to come along with evidence that pink unicorns exist, I would have reason to believe in them.
"A-theist" simply means, "without (a) god," and has nothing to do with a belief or lack of belief. Newborn babies have no belief systems, but they are also atheists, and will be, until someone begins filling their little heads with religion.
All the rest is 300 BCE Aristotelian quasi-logic from days when the earth was believed flat, and has been refuted ad nauseum.
You know your third premise is BS: "Logically something must come from something, nothing cannot create something." I even posted the Lawrence Krause video, "Something From Nothing" for your education, but either you didn't watch it or you didn't learn anything from it, because here you are, posting the came crap on THIS thread.
We're all waiting for you to show us evidence for the existence of a god, as was requested on the other thread - did you think that by running to another thread, you could outrun that request?
just for the record.
a·the·ist[ey-thee-ist] Show IPA
a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supremebeing or beings.
I had a look at Lawrence Krauss and honestly he doesn't answer the question any more certainly than the existence of a god does. in one respect, the "nothing" to which he makes reference is not really nothing because it has a mass meaning that something is still there visible, invisible, whatever, so he essentially avoids the question by saying that nothing is actually something. not to mention that this "nothing" is still theoretical.
the five "proofs" of Aquinas are simply questions that even the most hardline atheists will ask and neither prove nor disprove the existence of god. These questions are simply a crossroads where there are no difinitive answers.
Im pretty sure i have said this, if not i will say it now. I CANNOT PROVE BEYOND THE SHADOW OF DOUBT THAT GOD EXISTS THROUGH NATURAL LAW OR REASON. how's that for running from it :)
on the other side of the debate, ATHEISM CANNOT PROVE THAT GOD DOES NOT EXIST
Where does this leave us? I suppose it comes down to what you choose to believe. Do you choose to align yourself with theistic doctrine, in my case the teaching and tradition of the catholic church which accounts for the first cause without contradicting natural law and reason (if you want to challenge a specific point of catholic teaching with relation to science be my guest), or are you satisfied with the answer that science cannot prove conclusively at this time the origination of the universe. Science cannot yet prove the existence of god, however it does not contradict him.
it's not 300 bce quasi logic aquinas is much later and was far removed from aristotle.
I appreciate your concern with this issue as it is of significance and would be happy to further provide my take on it. Why i have not responded to other posts is a matter of time and giving the the proper attention to it. I do have a life to live regardless of what may or may not happen when i die. Let it be said that i am not at all making an attempt to convert anyone nor am i attempting to come across as having all the answers, I simply wanted to add a sharp contrast to these discussions because in all honesty they are quite one sided and more than a little biased towards atheism. I have written quite a number of posts today and as much as i enjoy debating and explaining and clarifying and refuting the ultimate goal is to exchange ideas regarding a certain topic and i have been met with a lot of harsh criticism and immediate dismissal. Are atheists offended by what i am saying? I figured you might value a contrasting opinion in a couple of one sided "debates", perhaps i was wrong? Any way i appreciate you taking the time to post the video, i did enjoy it and found it quite fascinating.
have a nice day
RE: "this "nothing" is still theoretical." - gravity is still a theory as well, could I watch you leap off a tall building, to test it? Who knows, you could levitate like your hero did.
RE: "Are atheists offended by what i am saying?" - I suspect that they're offended that you insult them by bringing the same, tired rhetoric here that we've refuted dozens of times from other theists. I'm just surprised that the really heavy-hitters aren't weighing in, but maybe they have refuted this Aristotellian bs so many times, they're bored with it.
You have a great day too, Ray
im sorry but there is nothing to refute, these questions do not require debunking, they are questions that lead to further questions to which nobody has the answer. They simply expose the adequacies of all universal theories including that of god.
It's not aristotellian, Aquinas, but regardless of where it came from, these questions are still unanswered by modern science and even religious only have theories to answer with. while science simply cannot explain the origin of the universe, religion does, however while science simply cannot answer these questions, religion requires faith and that is where alot of atheists get hung up and opt to wait for scientific proof instead of "misplacing" faith in an unproven deity. People can say that "i know" god exists or "i know" that god does not exist, but nobody knows anything we simply convince ourselves of the theory we choose to believe, be it scientific or theological.
I did not intend to attack atheism but to provide an alternative point of view that is just as possible as any other.