"but what if it is true?"  These people are really atheists and just need to admit it.

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Hedging your bets should be a guaranteed trip to imaginary hell!  I wouldn't have one of those spineless peeps on my team.
That's just it, George.  The real reason they do this is fear.  And, I don't think it is really fear of god or hell, it's fear of the other believers and the social and economic repercussions of coming out.  If we can put a stop to religious bullying and discrimination, then we will be putting an end to the long list of intellectual fig leafs used by such people.
I would not take Pascal's Wager at any odds.

Revelation 3:14-16, no matter how mindbogglingly insane that piece of mushroom-induced garbage is, still has something nice to say about cutting off the applicability of that particular probability (consequentialist) calculus:

14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; 15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

 

If one believes in (the Christian) god "just in case", he should probably also believe in all the other gods, "just in case", and he should probably also protect his house from fire-spitting dragons, "just in case", or he should always carry a knife made of silver to fight against werewolves, "just in case".
A ring of salt around my bed every night. Just in case of witches...
A gun with a silver bullet in case of werewolves
A wooden stake under my pillow in case of vampires.
Don't forget to pin a note to yourself so the EMT's know to remove your body from the house feet-first. Don't want to accidentally become a vampire. Then they will need the garlic!

But what business is it of yours how/when they arrive at that?  We're talking about the privacy of one's own mind here.

 

I was one of those "spineless peeps" that George mentions, for years.  I had to arrive at "nope, there definitely isn't" in my own time and in my own way; if I'd been called spineless and told I need to just admit it, I likely would have backed up, instead of going forward.

 

In my case it had less to do with fear of death than lack of evidence one way or the other.  I was sitting on the fence and weighing things out, waiting for some definite proof of either "is" or "ain't".  If you think that makes me (or anyone else) spineless or cowardly, that's your problem, not mine.

 

I just don't think that prejudice or name-calling is serving anyone except maybe the posters' own egos.

I don't know if you are addressing George or myself, Laura.  I didn't mean to insult.  I went through a period when I called myself agnostic and gave the same reasons that you give.  Eventually, I realized that I was doing this in an effort to "get along" and avoid discrimination.  (It didn't work, BTW.)  I realized that the search for evidence "one way or another" was implicit acceptance of the notion that I had some sort of burden of proof.  I also realized that the thing I was supposed to prove was literally impossible to prove.

 

Religion thrives on fear and its debilitating affect on the intellect.  That was my point, not to insult.  We need to take away religion's ability to make us fearful of stating the logically obvious.

 

http://goodatheistarguments.blogspot.com/2010/09/burden-of-proof.html

 

http://goodatheistarguments.blogspot.com/2010/09/burden-of-proof-ii...

 

http://goodatheistarguments.blogspot.com/2010/11/burden-of-proof-iv...

 

http://goodatheistarguments.blogspot.com/2010/10/atheism-vs-agnosti...

Pascal's Wager 101....

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Posted by Quincy Maxwell on July 20, 2014 at 9:37pm 28 Comments

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