It almost seems like atheists don't want to believe in God. Do you just simply not want to believe in God because you don't want to give up your own free will?

ADMIN EDIT: Mercedes has left ThinkAtheist.com on her own accord. This discussion will remain, however do not expect a response from the author. 

~Dan.

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I typically don't ask for evidence when no one is asking me to believe or accept a proposition. If you want the really simplified version, it's this: don't give me a reason to care or object and I won't.

If you want that unpacked a little, it's like this:

  • The amount of evidence I ask for is commensurate with the exceptionality of the claim. (How outlandish is it?)
  • The urgency with which I need the claim substantiated is commensurate with the contextual significance of the claim. (How much does it impact me or my interests?)

The Christian God is possibly the most exceptional claim which can be made. It seems to defy everything we know and have observed.  In order to accept it, I would need some equally exceptional evidence to match the claim.

Contextual significance? Well, if someone just wants to believe to themselves, there is none for me. I don't care. To each their own. If, on the other hand, that person wants to effect political policy based on their views on God, the significance of their God's existence matches the significance of the policy.

Just as an aside, I am certain my position has already appeared in a thread this long. I'm just adding one more voice to that position. No real need to address it individually.

Just as you would ask for proof that an airplane you are boarding is safe (the safety record of the airline) one should naturally demand proof that a book and the authority it is based on is provable and is worth following before you freely give up your own free will and autonomy. I would never get on a plane belonging to Somalian Airlines and I would never swallow the text of an outlandish story before exceptional and rigorous evidence was presented. You are doomed if you accept whatever people tell you. The more incredible the claim the stronger the evidence should be. The more you must give up in order to embrace the idea...the more exceptional and air tight the evidence should be.

If you think your afterlife will be better than your current life you're not really living. You're just waiting to die.

succinct & full of truth..... 

Which God? There are so many I don't believe in.

What I don't understand is why you would ask this question. You couldn't have possibly thought you'd be pleased with the response? I wouldn't create a profile on a religious website, but I suppose atheists don't impose their opinions on others.

It always amazes me that many of the theists who have posted here are not braced for the responses they get. If you seek out a site which in its premise disagrees with your cherished views, what more can you expect other than disagreement?

@Kris Feenstra;

Great point!

But as I think about it that presupposes a rational reasoning mind, which isn't the mind of a person who 'believes' in a deity.

What I don't understand is why you would ask this question. You couldn't have possibly thought you'd be pleased with the response? I wouldn't create a profile on a religious website, but I suppose atheists don't impose their opinions on others.

A lot of atheists are former theists.

You never know. ;)

It is, indeed, a very leading question. But look what wonderful debate it's sparked! More fun for us than for Mercedes, I'm sure.

Personally, I think Mercedes is quite likely a sweet kid, she can't help the way she was raised, any more than she can help trusting the beliefs of those who raised her - weren't most of us there once?

We were much kinder and more tolerant toward Belle Rose/Sarah/Jessica, when she first came here, and I'm sure she will agree with that. Let's give Mercedes a chance to learn from us, rather than turn her off with our criticism.

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