Debate and Discussion

Does Atheism "make sense" to you?
dueeast at 9:55AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,093
joined: 5-6-2007
Tantz Aerine
Can I cut in for just a moment and ask what a ‘fundamentalist Christian’ is? I have not heard the term before and I would like to know if I am one.

There are two views on that, one is the media image and one is the literal point of view.

By literal point of view, a fundamentalist Christian believes in the fundamentals of Christianity, such as taking the Bible literally, believing that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died, was buried and was resurrected by God three days later. A fundamentalist Christian believes that God created the universe (in six days) and that all life was created by God. A fundamentalist Christian follows Jesus' teachings to love everyone, be humble and service to others through charity. A fundamentalist Christian does not support abortion because it is considered murder of the fetus.

There's quite a bit more but I'm no preacher. :)

The media image, on the other hand, shows fundamentalists as racists, socially inept, corrupt, psychotic, two-faced, cultists and/or abortion clinic bombers.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:17PM
Aurora Moon at 10:09AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
dueeast
Tantz Aerine
Can I cut in for just a moment and ask what a ‘fundamentalist Christian’ is? I have not heard the term before and I would like to know if I am one.

There are two views on that, one is the media image and one is the literal point of view.

By literal point of view, a fundamentalist Christian believes in the fundamentals of Christianity, such as taking the Bible literally, believing that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died, was buried and was resurrected by God three days later. A fundamentalist Christian believes that God created the universe (in six days) and that all life was created by God. A fundamentalist Christian follows Jesus' teachings to love everyone, be humble and service to others through charity. A fundamentalist Christian does not support abortion because it is considered murder of the fetus.

There's quite a bit more but I'm no preacher. :)

The media image, on the other hand, shows fundamentalists as racists, socially inept, corrupt, psychotic, two-faced, cultists and/or abortion clinic bombers.

Well, The “media image” as you called it, isn't completely incorrect. after all… Fundamentalism doesn't just only mean believing in Jesus and following every word he said. It also means following EVERY word in the BIBLE itself even though some certain words/passages in the bible is contrary to Jesus's message about tolerance and love.That's why there's so many stories about those “crazy fundies”, and I've also met some of those unpleasant fellows, so I know for a fact that they really exist.

It's funny how that goes doesn't it? How some people can believe in the bible so completely but not really follow Jesus at all… maybe they should be called Fundamentalist Bible-followers (biblists?) or something like that, rather than Fundamentalist Christains…
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
Tantz Aerine at 10:09AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
The problem with scriptures is that everyone seems to quote things that are to their advantage in order to prove their point rather than to seek out the truth. It comes down to a power struggle about who is right and who is wrong and therefore, who will submit to the other rather than a mutual search for truth and balance between ourselves and God (if you believe in Him).

Many people claiming to be religious are actually much more in denial about God than others claiming to be atheists- like Ozone said it is not a matter of science or scientificity but one of personal beliefs and personal outlook of how the cosmos is. I can't stop thinking how Mendel, who fathered genetics, was actually a very religious man (aside from being a man of the cloth, which does not necessarily mean he was religious). Actually many scientists say that they pray to God before embarking on their research which has nothing to do with closing your eyes at the proof of science ;).

Also in the case of the Bible, many seem to forget or gloss over the fact that Jesus did say one thing (forgive me if I am too lazy to look up the reference- I never am able to remember them by heart) about the Old Testament, when they confronted him about how in the Old Testament they were ordered to stone adulterers: (forgive me if it is not an accurate quote- I am translating from memory AND Greek) ‘Moses’ Law gave you those strict orders because you are hard-hearted men, and there was no other way for you to be schooled.' And then he goes ahead and forgives the adulterer woman instead of condoning the stoning. He taught that rather than following the Old Testament to the t, it was far better to follow what the New Testament gave to man: To love, forgive and work constructively for humanity.

I think this is the rule of thumb for reading and interpreting the Old Testament. Just so we all stop fingering through the Bible with sneers on our faces at its archaic absurdity ;)

Now, on the atheism making sense, I would say that to me it does not- it is too simplistic to assume that randomness of any sort orchestrated the cosmos. Sheer law of probability rules out the chance of any of creation to have happened randomly. Even the fact that life is sustained right now on the planet and within every individual is a miracle in itself because the margins of error are so tight. Nothing done randomly can have such tight error margins. Only something constructed by an intelligent entity can have such tight error margins. It is like claiming that the device called ‘a clock’ just happened to occur by itself through some weird reactions of gravity and other physical laws, simply because its maker is not directly visible or nearby.

Now, who you believe this maker is and what qualities he/she has is another matter altogether ;)

Anyway, my two cents.

I am still not sure if I am a fundamentalist or not :P heheheh!!
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
Tantz Aerine at 10:18AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
One more question that just occurred to me while reading the last two posts:

Has anyone sat down to consider that the terms ‘day’ ‘eon’ ‘epoch’ ‘era’ may refer to completely different spans of time than what we use today? After all it was not so long ago that ‘day’ had only 12 hours, not 24.

Just saying that maybe 6 days may be accurate, but by some other dictionary that is not relevant in our modern times.

I am saying this thinking that maybe there is a lot of symbolism in some books in the Old Testament, like Genesis, not because of a sly intent to baffle people, but because when they were written they were either using different connotations for the same words OR the people writing this down could not translate the concept in more accurate terms. It is like a young toddler calling all animals ‘dog’ because that is the only word he has for animals in his vocabulary at that developmental stage.

Of course this is off topic, so I apologise. I just had to post this. :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
Aurora Moon at 10:18AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
Tantz Aerine
He taught that rather than following the Old Testament to the T, it was far better to follow what the New Testament gave to man: To love, forgive and work constructively for humanity.

Which is why Fundamentalism in itself is sorta a bad idea. If you're too busy following every word of the bible to a T, then you're basically missing his whole point. of course, this is just my opinion…
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
Aurora Moon at 10:27AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
Tantz Aerine
One more question that just occurred to me while reading the last two posts:

Has anyone sat down to consider that the terms ‘day’ ‘eon’ ‘epoch’ ‘era’ may refer to completely different spans of time than what we use today? After all it was not so long ago that ‘day’ had only 12 hours, not 24.

Just saying that maybe 6 days may be accurate, but by some other dictionary that is not relevant in our modern times.

I am saying this thinking that maybe there is a lot of symbolism in some books in the Old Testament, like Genesis, not because of a sly intent to baffle people, but because when they were written they were either using different connotations for the same words OR the people writing this down could not translate the concept in more accurate terms. It is like a young toddler calling all animals ‘dog’ because that is the only word he has for animals in his vocabulary at that developmental stage.

Of course this is off topic, so I apologise. I just had to post this. :)

Yep, you would be correct. another factor to conidser is translation mistakes.

like how that whole Virgin Mary myth got started. It was actually a mistake by the translator at the time when translating it from the oringial… the original word in the forgiven version meant “Young woman” and of course in that culture the word that meant “Young woman” also meant unmarried, etc… so it didn't mean that she was an literal virgin at all. Yet there are Christians who would insist that she is in fact, a virgin mother.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
dueeast at 10:29AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,093
joined: 5-6-2007
Aurora Moon,

Now those “media image” real life stories are what I call CINO's – Christians In Name Only. History is filled with people doing evil things supposedly in Jesus' or God's name. Literally speaking, Jesus would never condone those evil things. Therefore, they are not true representatives of the faith.

Aurora Moon
dueeast
Tantz Aerine
Can I cut in for just a moment and ask what a ‘fundamentalist Christian’ is? I have not heard the term before and I would like to know if I am one.

There are two views on that, one is the media image and one is the literal point of view.

By literal point of view, a fundamentalist Christian believes in the fundamentals of Christianity, such as taking the Bible literally, believing that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died, was buried and was resurrected by God three days later. A fundamentalist Christian believes that God created the universe (in six days) and that all life was created by God. A fundamentalist Christian follows Jesus' teachings to love everyone, be humble and service to others through charity. A fundamentalist Christian does not support abortion because it is considered murder of the fetus.

There's quite a bit more but I'm no preacher. :)

The media image, on the other hand, shows fundamentalists as racists, socially inept, corrupt, psychotic, two-faced, cultists and/or abortion clinic bombers.

Well, The “media image” as you called it, isn't completely incorrect. after all… Fundamentalism doesn't just only mean believing in Jesus and following every word he said. It also means following EVERY word in the BIBLE itself even though some certain words/passages in the bible is contrary to Jesus's message about tolerance and love.That's why there's so many stories about those “crazy fundies”, and I've also met some of those unpleasant fellows, so I know for a fact that they really exist.

It's funny how that goes doesn't it? How some people can believe in the bible so completely but not really follow Jesus at all… maybe they should be called Fundamentalist Bible-followers (biblists?) or something like that, rather than Fundamentalist Christains…
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:17PM
StaceyMontgomery at 10:33AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 520
joined: 4-7-2007
Tantz Aerine

Hi there!

You said several things in your post that I don't agree with, but i want to address just one of them. it's a point that the “atheists” have made many times on this board - and I don't think i've ever seen it really answered by the “theists.”

So I want to try again.

Tantz Aerine, you point out that the universe, to you, looks engineered. Therefore, you figure, there must be an Engineer - a Creative Intelligence. A God, or close enough. You are making a key point for theists - the Universe has to have come from somewhere.

No, as it happens, I think that's wrong on several points (The universe doesn't look engineered to me at all!) but let me focus on this one: If the Universe has to come from somewhere - meaning a creator - then where does the Creator come from?

That is, I think you are saying “The order and design of the universe can't just come from nowhere!” but you never actually say where it comes from. God, I seem to hear you say, is an eternal source of order - God doesn't have to come from anywhere!

But that seems to contradict what you said earlier - If the Creator can have eternal, unexplained order, than why can't the universe have it? Wouldnt it be just as easy to accept your claim - that order and creation can just be eternal - and apply that to the universe? In fact, isn't it more logical to take the simpler answer?

I have often heard theists make the point about order and design, and i have often heard Atheists respond the way I just did. It's happened several times in this thread already, I think. But I don't think I have ever heard a real theist response.

Look: obviously, I have not just changed all of your minds with my cleverness - so the argument must not sound so good to you as it does to me. I'd be very grateful if my theists friends could enlighten me on this one. If this argument is weaker than I think it is, I'd like to stop making a fool of myself with it!


last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
Tantz Aerine at 10:43AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
Aurora Moon
like how that whole Virgin Mary myth got started. It was actually a mistake by the translator at the time when translating it from the oringial… the original word in the forgiven version meant “Young woman” and of course in that culture the word that meant “Young woman” also meant unmarried, etc… so it didn't mean that she was an literal virgin at all. Yet there are Christians who would insist that she is in fact, a virgin mother.

Hmm. Maybe. However I do believe that Mary was indeed a virgin ;) I don't see why this should be a problem to believe if you believe the rest of the New Testament. If you believe God and that Jesus is the Son of God who has been Resurrected and risen to the havens, and that God is the creator of all the cosmos, then having a woman bear child without copulation is no big deal. ;) Also this cannot be a translation error, because a whole social situation is discussed around this, and how Joseph was specifically NOT the father and tried to secretly divorce Mary.

Also there is a scientific explanation as there is a chance where a woman bears a healthy baby without the contribution of semen. I will have to look it up to post the reference, but if you ‘convince’ the ovum that it has been fertilized, it will start dividing as a zygote even with half the chromosomes, ending up with the production of an infant- a viable infant assuming the chromosomes in the ovum are all healthy alleles. I don't think that this is what happened in the case of Mary- I think God actually did have her conceive and Jesus had (and has) all his chromosomes, but I am saying this just to show that it is not impossible even with our knowledge of biology.


Anyway, this is beyond the point because it involves a belief system you actually accept or not. Many have questioned parts of the dogma, and Mary's virginity is one such issue. However this is part of what I said about what you believe in your heart about God. It is beyond the point of whether atheism makes sense or not ;)

Once again, sorry for side tracking the thread. But there's so much interesting stuff!
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
Aurora Moon at 10:44AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
dueeast
Aurora Moon,

Now those “media image” real life stories are what I call CINO's – Christians In Name Only. History is filled with people doing evil things supposedly in Jesus' or God's name. Literally speaking, Jesus would never condone those evil things. Therefore, they are not true representatives of the faith.

It's werid how you seem to be saying the same thing I am but in a slightly different way. notice this part of my post that you quoted:

Aurora Moon
It's funny how that goes doesn't it? How some people can believe in the bible so completely but not really follow Jesus at all… maybe they should be called Fundamentalist Bible-followers (biblists?) or something like that, rather than Fundamentalist Christains…

So THAT pretty much states how I don't really believe them to be followers of Jesus. They're fundemlist bible-followers, basically.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
Vindibudd at 10:48AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 416
joined: 1-29-2006
TnTComic
ozoneocean
- I'll just reiterate that a discussion about atheism is not a debate about Religion verses Science.

Atheism isn't really a noun so much as it is an adjective. Its not an affirmative belief in anything at all, though some out there will try to paint it as such. Atheism isn't a state of mind either, as much as some militant atheists believe it is. For the majority of atheists, its not something that defines them at all. Most atheists are as defined by their non-belief in god as most believers in god are defined by their non-belief in Zeus. So in a way, you're right. A discussion about atheism is not a debate about religion vs science, until someone asks the atheist why he doesn't believe in god. In other words, if you don't want a discussion on atheism to turn to science/religion, don't let the discussion last more than one or two sentences.

The reason I posted my little sarcastic Bible verse was because of the attacking nature that you had when you stated that science has disproved most of the Bible. Well that is kind a stupid thing to say since many things that happen in the Bible are of a supernatural quality thus making them impossible to prove or disprove by science. It is akin to trying to measure how “long” a gallon of liquid is. They are not reconcilable. If you want to sit there and argue about how preposterous it is for some shining figure to come in the clouds on a white horse with stars for eyes because it is not “scientifically” possible, then you are tilting at a windmill. You cannot win an argument about faith with scientific instruments. Atheists tend to attack people of faith, that is where you raise a person's ire. I don't care what you believe, but I do care when you try to paint me as an idiot for believing what I believe. Especially when you are willing to declare that the whole world arrived here by chance rather than my “stupid” belief in a higher intelligence than the almighty mankind.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
dueeast at 10:50AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,093
joined: 5-6-2007
Aurora Moon,

Yes, we are very, very close in what we are saying. :)

But I think where we differ in opinion is that I am saying that it is possible to be a fundamentalist Christian without being a CINO. I am a fundamentalist Christian but I am not a wacko. :spin:

Aurora Moon
dueeast
Aurora Moon,

Now those “media image” real life stories are what I call CINO's – Christians In Name Only. History is filled with people doing evil things supposedly in Jesus' or God's name. Literally speaking, Jesus would never condone those evil things. Therefore, they are not true representatives of the faith.

It's werid how you seem to be saying the same thing I am but in a slightly different way. notice this part of my post that you quoted:

Aurora Moon
It's funny how that goes doesn't it? How some people can believe in the bible so completely but not really follow Jesus at all… maybe they should be called Fundamentalist Bible-followers (biblists?) or something like that, rather than Fundamentalist Christains…

So THAT pretty much states how I don't really believe them to be followers of Jesus. They're fundemlist bible-followers, basically.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:17PM
Aurora Moon at 10:56AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
dueeast
Aurora Moon,

Yes, we are very, very close in what we are saying. :)

But I think where we differ in opinion is that I am saying that it is possible to be a fundamentalist Christian without being a CINO. I am a fundamentalist Christian but I am not a wacko. :spin:

Yep. but I just have a hard time picturing such a thing to be true. I happen to see you more of a “Devout Christain” type than a fundie type. A lot of simlaries between the two in how they almost have the same belief systems (such as beliving that parts of the bible has literal meanings), but oh so much different in which parts they happen to follow and how they act upon it.

If that makes sense.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
Vindibudd at 10:59AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 416
joined: 1-29-2006
Aurora Moon
like how that whole Virgin Mary myth got started. It was actually a mistake by the translator at the time when translating it from the oringial… the original word in the forgiven version meant “Young woman” and of course in that culture the word that meant “Young woman” also meant unmarried, etc… so it didn't mean that she was an literal virgin at all. Yet there are Christians who would insist that she is in fact, a virgin mother.

This is horrifically incorrect. There are multiple Biblical justifications for the belief that Mary was a virgin. If she was not a virgin, then the deity of Christ is called into question. If Jesus is not the son of God then he is a liar and everything the church stands on is torn apart and there ceases to be a Christian faith. I can go on about this, but that would make it a thread-jack and I hate thread-jacking.

No atheism doesn't make sense to me, but it makes perfect sense to atheists, mostly.

last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Tantz Aerine at 11:01AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
Hi Stacy!

(sorry for not answering earlier- I was typing other stuff and I am going to be even more behind with my update on Wolf, but I am getting hooked in this!)

First off: I would never dream of claiming you are making a fool of yourself with this question. It is one I thought of many times myself. I was not always a theist OR a Christian, you know ;)

I will be happy to try to answer this to the best of my capacity. However please just ask me further if you think I have not covered you. I will try my best in future posts. I love it when I can have a civilized chat about these things- it is so rare.

Your question is ‘if God made the Universe, who made God?’

First off, God is not a creation. The idea that He does not have a beginning or an end is not really so odd. It really depends on what you think of God- how you conceive him to be in your mind. If your concept of God is that of an elderly gentleman in a white long beard, then yes I guess it's a normal question about who made him, and we'd probably end up as the Egyptians, stopping at the 7th Ka lol! .

There are many things in the cosmos which we do not understand- let alone those out of it. The fact that we don't know the exact workings does not mean there is no exact working or detail or answer. What we should do is search and research rather than assume that we have already all the cards in our hands.

Anyway, what I will say now is my answer to your question. I don't think it is something you can find in the books, but it is what I have come to conclude after praying and researching and studying. What I mean is, I am going to give you my personal interpretation/opinion, so you can take it or leave it, or consider it. It is not written in stone or some sort of rule, ok? :)

God is energy. He is all of the cosmos and beyond it. The cosmos is contained in God, which accounts for how he is omniscient and omnipresent. Energy, if we take the Laws of Thermodynamics, is neither created nor consumed. I think this is the essence of God, and that is what is meant at ‘God has no beginning or end’. I just think that this energy is intelligent and benevolent. And created the cosmos ;)

Has my theist answer been any different? If not, please tell me what I have ignored :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
Aurora Moon at 11:09AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
Vindibudd
Aurora Moon
like how that whole Virgin Mary myth got started. It was actually a mistake by the translator at the time when translating it from the oringial… the original word in the forgiven version meant “Young woman” and of course in that culture the word that meant “Young woman” also meant unmarried, etc… so it didn't mean that she was an literal virgin at all. Yet there are Christians who would insist that she is in fact, a virgin mother.

This is horrifically incorrect. There are multiple Biblical justifications for the belief that Mary was a virgin. If she was not a virgin, then the deity of Christ is called into question. If Jesus is not the son of God then he is a liar and everything the church stands on is torn apart and there ceases to be a Christian faith. I can go on about this, but that would make it a thread-jack and I hate thread-jacking.

actually… in the oringal texts, Jesus spefically said that he was not to be worshipped, that he was simply ONLY born to be a messager of god. in that culture at that time, he was regarded more like a holy prophet. He never said that he was the son of god.

In fact, the very FIRST Christains actually rejected the notion that he was the son of god and simply followed his words as a holy prophet. study the oringal arabic-herbew text. and then you will find out that not only do they litterally call Mary “A young woman” rather than “virgin”, but the fact that nowhere did Jesus ever reffer to himself as THE son of god.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
Ludus Pragma at 11:32AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 33
joined: 11-9-2006
I go away for a few hours and ya'll type up a storm. So much to comment on and so little time.

Just to restate my original position: The fundamental reason that atheism makes sense to me is because the universe does not need any supernatural forces to operate as we currently understand it. Occam's Razor.

Vindibudd

When I quoted the bible in response to your quote I was not looking to start a fight about who's killed more people and who's caused more suffering. Historically most wars and holy wars have a secular cause and then a religious reason is tacked on. People must be responsible for their own actions and as others have pointed out we don't get our morality from religions.

dueeast

While I do not doubt your sincerity or your pride in your religion I think you are using the term fundamentalist incorrectly. A fundamentalist, in any religion, is a person that feels the fundamental teachings of their religion are absolutely true.

Since you have yet to be arrested for murder I'll assume you haven't been stoning people who work on Sunday or who don't share your religion. (But required but the laws set forth in Leviticus.)

The Vigin Mary

If you are Christian and believe in the virgin birth, or any other miracle, stop trying to find a scientific explanation for it. Your god requires faith and faith is about not asking questions.

If you are not a Christian. Back in the day, when not riding on the backs of dinosaurs , it was traditional for people to ascribe supernatural qualities to great people. Notable leaders didn't just rule for thirty years they ruled for three hundred years. Hannibal and Alexander the Great were both claimed to have been born of Virgins. (So was a Jesus like sun god named Mithra who was light born of light on the solstice)
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:48PM
Tantz Aerine at 11:32AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
Jesus refers to himself as the Son of Man and he also does refer to God as ‘My Father in Heaven’. That makes him the Son of God. He also did admit as much when his apostles called him that. This is also in the Bible.

However this is again focusing on the Christian faith rather than ‘belief in God’ vs. ‘atheism’.

Why don't we just make a thread called ‘Issues in the Bible that Cause Dissension’ if we are always going to gravitate towards that? lol!
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
StaceyMontgomery at 11:40AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 520
joined: 4-7-2007
Tantz Aerine

Thanks for your answer. I guess I don't really find it very satisfying though. When someone makes the argument that the universe must be designed, it seems fair to ask why the Universe needs to be created but “God has no beginning or end.”

That is, my point doesn't in anyway disprove the existence of God - but I think it does show that the argument you used about the Universe needing a designer is a weak one. If you believe that some things have no beginning and no end, then clearly things don't always need designers.

I just think this means you have other reasons for believing what you belief - other than the Design argument, I mean. And that's OK. I'm just trying to work through the parts that make no sense to me, in case there's stuff that does make sense to me underneath.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
Vindibudd at 11:41AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 416
joined: 1-29-2006
Aurora Moon
actually… in the oringal texts, Jesus spefically said that he was not to be worshipped, that he was simply ONLY born to be a messager of god. in that culture at that time, he was regarded more like a holy prophet. He never said that he was the son of god.

In fact, the very FIRST Christains actually rejected the notion that he was the son of god and simply followed his words as a holy prophet. study the oringal arabic-herbew text. and then you will find out that not only do they litterally call Mary “A young woman” rather than “virgin”, but the fact that nowhere did Jesus ever reffer to himself as THE son of god.

Which “original” texts are you referring to that has fooled 2000 years of greek and hebrew scholars? And which first Christians are you referring to?
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Tantz Aerine at 11:43AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
If you are Christian and believe in the virgin birth, or any other miracle, stop trying to find a scientific explanation for it. Your god requires faith and faith is about not asking questions.


Well that feels like Medieval times revisited lol!

 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
Tantz Aerine at 11:50AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
StaceyMontgomery
Tantz Aerine

Thanks for your answer. I guess I don't really find it very satisfying though. When someone makes the argument that the universe must be designed, it seems fair to ask why the Universe needs to be created but “God has no beginning or end.”

That is, my point doesn't in anyway disprove the existence of God - but I think it does show that the argument you used about the Universe needing a designer is a weak one. If you believe that some things have no beginning and no end, then clearly things don't always need designers.

I just think this means you have other reasons for believing what you belief - other than the Design argument, I mean. And that's OK. I'm just trying to work through the parts that make no sense to me, in case there's stuff that does make sense to me underneath.

Actually I think you read my answer at a tangent. The problem in your logic at solving this is that you take God to be a ‘thing’ needing a ‘designer’. What I am saying is that God is NOT a thing and therefore does NOT need a designer. The Universe is a creation- therefore it needs a Creator. God is not a creation, therefore does not need a Creator. The principle exists within the cosmos already- energy.

You didn't comment on my definition of God as an entity, speaking of energy. Did you dismiss it for some valid reason or it just was easier to ignore? ;) We can take this to PQ if you like, instead of highjack the thread. If you strip what I said off the threatening stuff, you will see that I am not saying anything that is so alien to what we experience as individuals. I would love to talk about it further in PQ or in another thread. But the way you reply just shows me you have not stopped to really think about what I have said.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
ozoneocean at 11:57AM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 24,966
joined: 1-2-2004
dueeast
ozoneocean
The other side is of course that Fundamentalist Christians don't represent “religion” any more than people who spend their lives investigating UFOs, perpetual motion devices, and ESP are the representatives of all science.
Not all “fundamentalist Christians” are crazed extremist nutjobs like you see in the movies.
People who investigate UFOs etc aren't all crazy either, a lot of them are quite serious, very intelligent and follow a rigorous scientific method in their studies, but they don't represent all science are are seen as being a bit on the outside. This is obviously why I used them as a comparison. Please don't go off on a tangent and derail the discussion.

I think the intention was pretty obvious: in this discussion it is unhelpful, uninformative, and uninteresting to justify atheism by picking on extremely soft and irrelevant targets.

And so a thread about atheism turns back around to talking about Christianity… I wonder why this always happens? I suppose Christianity is just THAT much of an important framework in our Western culture that you can't help but return to it. It's so important to people that they define their lives by it even in rejection
The irony… lol!
————————————–

I'll just respond to Stacey…
So you'd say you were more “anti-religious” than atheist then? Because when we're talking about atheism, I would personally define that as being a way of looking at the world that excludes the existence of any supernatural “gods” in any form, regardless of cultures of worship or dogma. If there is an opposite of this (rather difficult), it wouldn't be a particular religious belief system (like say orthodox Judaism for example), because that would be like saying the opposite of no light is blue light (rather than just “light” )*, it would have to be the general idea or acceptance that divinity is possible; so NOT some kind of abstract “theism” , but rather a world where it is possible that at least one of the gods that the various faiths believe in could exist, or even some other kind of supernatural “god” presence- because, afterall, if that kind of existence is possible, could it be defined in human terms?

If I were to reduce this to the old binary system we like so much I'd have to say that “yes and No” just doesn't cut it. When talking about gods, atheism is “NO” and in this case the opposite isn't “YES”, the opposite is “not NO”.
-This is because if not atheism, then the case can not be that all religions are correct. You see? Atheism just closes off the ability that any of them could ever be.

*Regarding the light/no light example: this is merely to illustrate the the folly of nominating an “opposite” from among a larger group. No meanings are intended by the further symbolic meanings of the terms “light” and “no light”. :P
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:27PM
dueeast at 12:01PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,093
joined: 5-6-2007
Under the New Testament, things did fundamentally (pardon the pun) change. Jesus did away with “eye for an eye” and many other such things. Stoning people who work on Sunday was part of the Law of Moses in the Old Testament. Jesus literally created the New Testament because the time of the Old Testament was over. To address a point I made in another thread, this did not render the Old Testament “irrelevant” but it did change the nature of the way man was instructed by Jesus Christ to live.

Ludus Pragma
dueeast
While I do not doubt your sincerity or your pride in your religion I think you are using the term fundamentalist incorrectly. A fundamentalist, in any religion, is a person that feels the fundamental teachings of their religion are absolutely true.

Since you have yet to be arrested for murder I'll assume you haven't been stoning people who work on Sunday or who don't share your religion. (But required but the laws set forth in Leviticus.)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:17PM
arteestx at 12:17PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 285
joined: 6-1-2007
Tantz Aerine
The problem in your logic at solving this is that you take God to be a ‘thing’ needing a ‘designer’. What I am saying is that God is NOT a thing and therefore does NOT need a designer. The Universe is a creation- therefore it needs a Creator. God is not a creation, therefore does not need a Creator. The principle exists within the cosmos already- energy.

The fundamental problem is the seemingly illogical idea of “something coming from nothing.” Theists insist that the Universe falls into this problem and God does not. Ahteists insist that either both fall into this category or neither does; that if God can come from nothing, why can't the Universe? If God can be a mystery that has no beginning, why can't the Universe? Simply labeling one as a creation and the other as a creator doesn't solve the problem. At least to me.

Xolta is not intended for anyone under 18 years old.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:02AM
StaceyMontgomery at 12:30PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 520
joined: 4-7-2007
Tantz Aerine

I'm happy to discuss this privately, but I feel like what we are talking about is at the core of this topic, so I'm happy to keep it here if you are. Feel free to PQ me if i am wrong about that.

I think we are now talking about two points - let me try to do them one at a time, in hopes of not getting tangled in my own silliness.

First, there is the argument about design itself - the one that I keep going on about it. Forgive me, it is a point that has captured my imagination.

You said:

“The problem in your logic at solving this is that you take God to be a ‘thing’ needing a ‘designer’. What I am saying is that God is NOT a thing and therefore does NOT need a designer.”

So to me, what you've done here is cheating. You've created definitions for your words that prove your point. You've just defined the Universe as “a thing that needs god” and defined god as “that which creates the Universe.” Well, OK, but that's not very helpful. I find myself where I started - the argument based on Design just isn't a strong one. That doesn't prove anything about the existence of God - just the value of that particular argument. I humbly suggest that my theist friends set it aside - it does not help you.

So on to the other point.

You said:

“God is energy. He is all of the cosmos and beyond it. The cosmos is contained in God, which accounts for how he is omniscient and omnipresent. Energy, if we take the Laws of Thermodynamics, is neither created nor consumed. I think this is the essence of God, and that is what is meant at ‘God has no beginning or end’. I just think that this energy is intelligent and benevolent. And created the cosmos”

I'm afraid I find this hard to respond to because it doesn't say much. I mean, it certainly could be true. I don't see any evidence for it. I guess I mean that this so vague that it can't really be debated.

I could just as easily say:

“The Universe is made up of matter and energy, space and time, order and chaos, love and terror - and it has no beginning and no end” and it would make as much sense as your statement. Both seem equally pretty (and empty) to me.

You also say that “this energy is intelligent and benevolent” and that's much more interesting to me. I do not see any evidence that the Universe was designed, or that the designer was benevolent. I have certainly looked for evidence of such Intelligence and benevolence! But I don't see them.

For me it comes down to this - I ask myself - How would the Universe be different in there was no intelligent Designer? No benevolent Creator? it seems to me that we could still end up with THIS Universe. But I can certainly imagine a Universe more intelligently designed than this one, and more benevolent.


last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
dueeast at 12:34PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,093
joined: 5-6-2007
Aurora Moon:

Yes, it makes sense. And thank you for the compliment.

In the end, the label “fundamentalist” seems to be becoming a distraction, so maybe we can move past that.

I am a Christian. I believe in the Bible and have been taught very important guiding principles to my life from it. I have had profound spiritual experiences which have convinced me personally of the existence of God and Christ and the Holy Ghost (and no, I'm not talking about speaking in tongues :) ). I can only share what I have experienced with those who want to talk about it, I would never try to force my beliefs on anyone.

Aurora Moon
dueeast
Aurora Moon,

Yes, we are very, very close in what we are saying. :)

But I think where we differ in opinion is that I am saying that it is possible to be a fundamentalist Christian without being a CINO. I am a fundamentalist Christian but I am not a wacko. :spin:

Yep. but I just have a hard time picturing such a thing to be true. I happen to see you more of a “Devout Christain” type than a fundie type. A lot of simlaries between the two in how they almost have the same belief systems (such as beliving that parts of the bible has literal meanings), but oh so much different in which parts they happen to follow and how they act upon it.

If that makes sense.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:17PM
Tantz Aerine at 12:54PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(online)
posts: 1,616
joined: 10-11-2006
StaceyMontgomery
I think we are now talking about two points - let me try to do them one at a time, in hopes of not getting tangled in my own silliness.

I see you like to bask in your professed ‘silliness’, don't you? It is a safe way not to be accused of it. It also reminds me of Columbo. Let's not continue this though, because it comes across as ironic- as if you did feel that what you think or say is silly, you wouldn't be presenting it as something actually better than what others say, and it does seem that this is what you are doing- which is totally fine, but let's be frank about it ;)

So to me, what you've done here is cheating. You've created definitions for your words that prove your point.

So you do admit it proves my point? lol! Joking aside though: I did say I reached my conclusion after researching and thinking on my own. I didn't cheat, making those definitions. I can discuss them too, but do you see how easily we spiral onto other topics? How do you define God? Do you define him at all? What does it take to define God? Is it easier to just dismiss His existence merely because His definition is elusive and arbitrary? If I attempt to define God based on my experiences, is that cheating?

Anyway- the cosmos is created (pardon my saying so) and so is made up of various types of matter and energy. Therefore, the cosmos is creation. God, on the other hand, is JUST energy. Therefore NOT created. Is this a little less cheating?

That doesn't prove anything about the existence of God - just the value of that particular argument. I humbly suggest that my theist friends set it aside - it does not help you.

I'm sorry, you lost me here. Are we arguing on the existence of God? I thought my answer was to the question ‘Who made God’, not ‘Does God exist’ (which was why I said it belonged to another thread).



I'm afraid I find this hard to respond to because it doesn't say much. I mean, it certainly could be true. I don't see any evidence for it. I guess I mean that this so vague that it can't really be debated.

Why is it vague? I don't see it as vague.

I could just as easily say:

“The Universe is made up of matter and energy, space and time, order and chaos, love and terror - and it has no beginning and no end” and it would make as much sense as your statement. Both seem equally pretty (and empty) to me.

I can certainly see why this is incoherent. But why energy not having a beginning or end is so is beyond me. Care to enlighten me?

You also say that “this energy is intelligent and benevolent” and that's much more interesting to me. I do not see any evidence that the Universe was designed, or that the designer was benevolent. I have certainly looked for evidence of such Intelligence and benevolence! But I don't see them.

Ah, but that is the whole point of searching, and making sense of the cosmos, ne? I have been through hardship, questioned and denied things and in the end I did see both benevolence and intelligence. Maybe tomorrow or in a year or when you're dying you will end up seeing the same. This is your thing to see. Not someone else's to prove- if this energy is intelligent and benevolent. This is part of what I have experienced and come to conclude. I certainly can't argue with my experiences- that would be arguing with examples and in debates it is not taken as evidence that is really valid.

If this energy (which I call God, and you may dismiss or call something else) is benevolent or neutral is up to you to decide. That was my opinion. Not my argument ;) Sorry to disappoint on that :)

I must also ask you though the reverse of what you have been asking me, as what you have been telling me (humbly or not ;) ) can be easily turned on its head:

If the principle of creator and creation exists in the Universe, why not assume that the Universe was itself created by a creator?

I don't see any evidence that the universe was not created but rather created randomly. Can you please provide me with some?
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:07PM
StaceyMontgomery at 1:07PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 520
joined: 4-7-2007
OzoneOcean

I don't like to get caught trying to argue that “there is no god” because God can be defined in very vague terms. I am an atheist, but I do not claim to be an expert on the meaning of the Universe. There are mysteries that are beyond me.

However, I so far see no evidence or need for god - or anything supernatural - and I am happy to say so.

In the absence of any evidence, it seems to me that belief in the supernatural does more harm than good. And when the belief in the supernatural turns into a dogma or doctrine with rules and a list of enemies… then it is especially dangerous.

I am, in the end, a lover of freedom and an opponent of Authoritarians. Whenever someone says that their economic theory, or their government system, or their religion, or whatever, is the one true way - I get nervous. Whenever someone claims to have “the one and only truth” it is only a short time before they start trying to kill off the unbelievers - if we let them.

I am a fan of science because, unlike these other systems, it is ruthlessly self-correcting. That is a model that other spheres of life could learn a lot from, in my opinion. I always prefer the Search For Truth vs Those Who Claim to Have the Truth.

it is one thing to look at the sunset and say “I am a small part of something big and beautiful, and I sense some meaning that goes beyond my understanding.”

It is quite another thing to look at the sunset and say “God made this, and he's my personal pal, and those who do not believe will suffer!”

Now, when i say this, my theist friends often take offense. that's the WORST of religion, they say, and it's unfair to paint all with the same brush.

But to me, all religion starts with a lie - that is, with a person claiming to know things that they really do not know. To have answers that they do not have.

Humility requires us to say “but we do not know.” And that, it seems to me, is the opposite of religion.

To me, there is nothing more scary than a crowd of people who know that they cannot be wrong.


last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
Ludus Pragma at 1:10PM, Aug. 7, 2007
(offline)
posts: 33
joined: 11-9-2006
Tantz Aerine
If you are Christian and believe in the virgin birth, or any other miracle, stop trying to find a scientific explanation for it. Your god requires faith and faith is about not asking questions.


Well that feels like Medieval times revisited lol!



Are you saying that a belief in an all powerful sky king who will punish naughty people in the next life isn't? LOL
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:48PM

Forgot Password
©2011 WOWIO, Inc. All Rights Reserved