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Problems with Atheism

 
 
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 04:44 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:

...all world-views are allowed a voice in public discussion and are given proportional representation....


Have you fully thought out the implications of this line of thinking?
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:07 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
There are systems of morality that are better than others. Some rely on a deity, others do not. As a general matter, deity-centered systems of morality fall afoul of Ockham's Razor, but I'm sure that there are some non-deity-centered systems of morality that suffer from even greater flaws. But to say that systems of morality are not substantially different because they all rely on unprovable assumptions is to say that all unprovable assumptions are alike, and I'm sure you don't agree with that.


The statement; "There are systems of morality that are better than others" has a big problem. You are implying there is some way to judge between two people with different ideas on what is moral or not.

Any such judgement will be subjective. Specifically it will be based on your upbringing, culture and your world view. Clearly based on specific world-view or culture you can judge which of two views is better.

Of course, different people in different cultures will reach different conclusions.

What you really need is objective judge; someone who can decide between two views without influence of a specific culture or world-view.

My assertion is that such an objective judge does not exist.
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:08 pm
@maporsche,
Quote:

Have you fully thought out the implications of this line of thinking?


Yes.

What would you suggest as an alternative?
0 Replies
 
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:11 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
What you really need is objective judge; someone who can decide between two views without influence of a specific culture or world-view.

My assertion is that such an objective judge does not exist.



Why does someone need an objective judge? Can't people have multiple, conflicting, world views and we all just get along fine?

Does there have to be a 'best' world view?
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:14 pm
@maporsche,
Quote:
Why does someone need an objective judge? Can't people have multiple, conflicting, world views and we all just get along fine?


Of course.

That was exactly the point I was making (in response to Joefromchicago's post ).
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:37 pm
@ebrown p,
Christians everywhere misrepresent atheism with strawman after strawman after strawman, and you think you're making the world a better place by suggesting their strawmen are as valid as any other point of view ??

In this country, the LEADERS of the church, followers of which include the leaders of both our major political parties, launched just such a corps of straw directly at atheism as the subject of their Easter address.

As for all worldviews having proportional representation, it must be time we heard where the priest child buggerers get their morals from.


0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 07:34 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:

...I start a thread challenging Atheism... A religious observance is clearly open game for disdain and mockery, but how dare I challenge something as sacred as Atheism?

Do you see the hypocrisy here?


First, who claimed Atheism to be sacred? Next, you haven't challenged Atheism in this thread, you've provided a strawman. It also seem like you're defining Atheism solely in terms of being irreligious.

If your point is that Atheist stomp all over what the religious find sacred, but can't handle it when their ideas are challenged, then you've chosen a truly meaningless way to test this notion. Instead to asserting what other's believe, why not ask? It seems feedback here has been very clear that your second and third descriptions of Atheists are simply false. Why continue with false premises?

Your thread is about "problems with Atheism," but at what point has a problem been identified? Where have you demonstrated that the Atheist has a logical/rational dilemma?

T
K
O
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  3  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 07:44 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
So I start a thread challenging Atheism. And (as engineer noted) the fireworks really began. A religious observance is clearly open game for disdain and mockery, but how dare I challenge something as sacred as Atheism?

But you're not challenging atheism. That's the thing. You're "challenging" a strawman that you made up on the spot because you lack the intellectual firepower to challenge the real thing. That, I admit, causes some head-shaking and annoyance -- and rightly so.
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:10 pm
@Thomas,
Come on Thomas,

On this very thread people are arguing that a world view without god has a better understanding of some truth about meaning and morality then people who believe in God. This argument is not something I made up.

Disdain for "religionists" and their "imaginary friend" being expressed on this very thread and others, along with cheap shots about sexual abuse (as if only "religionists" abuse children) and crass mockery of religious customs is on every page of this thread.

The evidence is right here that these aspects of Atheism are real. I made it clear from the beginning that not all people who don't believe in god are like this, but come on... examples of what I am talking about are pretty easy to find.


Thomas
 
  4  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:19 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
On this very thread people are arguing that a world view without god has a better understanding of some truth about meaning and morality then people who believe in God.

Yes, but that's nothing personal about god. It's something general about Occam's razor. There's no difference in principle between razoring out god and razoring out astrology, phlogiston theory, and homeopathy. And I don't see you labeling a-homeopaths, a-fairists, and anti-astrologers as religions.

ebrown p wrote:
Disdain for "religionists" and their "imaginary friend" being expressed on this very thread and others, along with cheap shots about sexual abuse (as if only "religionists" abuse children) and crass mockery of religious customs is on every page of this thread.

It's not disdain to believe that someone is wrong, and to say so clearly. It's not a cheap shot to point out that the Catholic Church has a massive problem with abuse of power in general, sexual abuse in particular, and a culture of covering for the abusers and hushing up the victims. And it's not crass mockery to point out that Easter is originally a pagan fertility rite, which the Church then coopted with their sado-masochistic stories around Romans torturing a Jewish carpenter to death. You're the one engaged in special pleading here, not us.
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:21 pm
@Thomas,
On a tangent, I love that Firefox's spell-checker wants me to change "sado-masochistic" into "soda-masochistic"!
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:43 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
There is a difference between Atheism (which encompasses all three statements) and atheism (the simple non-obtrusive belief there is no god).

There is clearly an Anti-Religious form Atheism. You can see this on A2K threads that have the slightest connection to religion.

This thread is about Atheism, not atheism.

You mean there are obnoxious people with chips on their shoulders who loudly insist that they are right and everyone who disagrees with them are wrong?

Who knew?

Thank you for this wonderful insight into the human, scratch that, "Atheist" psyche.
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:44 pm
@Thomas,
Quote:
It's something general about Occam's razor. There's no difference in principle between razoring out god and razoring out astrology, phlogiston theory, and homeopathy. And I don't see you labeling a-homeopaths, a-fairists, and anti-astrologers as religions.


There is a difference between scientific claims, and non-scientific claims. Scientific claims can be empirically tested. The problem with astrology, phlogiston theory, and homeopathy is that they are making scientific claims based on non-scientific arguments.

It is just as unsound to claim to use science to answer non-scientific claims. Science has nothing to say about finding meaning in life. Science can't provide any core moral assertions.

If the question is whether the world is flat... well this is a well-defined testable assertion with a clear scientifically correct answer.

Questions about whether abortion is moral, or whether there are fundamental human rights or whether human life has intrinsic value. There is no definitive scientific answers to these question. They are question of values-- different people will have different answers based on their culture, or upbringing or what year they were born.

Atheists have no better answers to questions of meaning or values then anyone else. (For that matter, people who believe in god do sound science-- and people who don't believe in god can act awfully irrationally).




ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:51 pm
@Thomas,
Quote:
. It's not a cheap shot to point out that the Catholic Church has a massive problem with abuse of power in general, sexual abuse in particular, and a culture of covering for the abusers and hushing up the victims.


Of course it is a cheap shot. This is as a bogus an argument as people who claim that Stalin (who had a massive problem with abuse of power in general, and a culture of covering for the abusers and hushing up the victims) is representative of Atheism.

This type of argument is completely irrelevant and fallacious.



0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:52 pm
@ebrown p,
Compulsory female circumcision. Theists who support it on religious grounds have a better, worse or equal take on the issue?
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:54 pm
@Eorl,
Quote:
Compulsory female circumcision. Theists who support it on religious grounds have a better, worse or equal take on the issue?


Did you read my last post to Thomas?

Generating competing lists of crimes committed by Atheists and Religionists won't prove anything.

This line of argument is silly.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 08:54 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
The statement; "There are systems of morality that are better than others" has a big problem. You are implying there is some way to judge between two people with different ideas on what is moral or not.

Of course. Why would you think otherwise?

ebrown p wrote:
Any such judgement will be subjective. Specifically it will be based on your upbringing, culture and your world view. Clearly based on specific world-view or culture you can judge which of two views is better.

Well, any judgment is necessarily subjective to the extent that it is the judgment of a person, including the judgment that all judgments are subjective. That doesn't mean, however, that all subjective judgments are wrong.

ebrown p wrote:
Of course, different people in different cultures will reach different conclusions.

Quite possibly. Do you conclude, therefore, that different people in different cultures are necessarily right in their individual judgments?

ebrown p wrote:
What you really need is objective judge; someone who can decide between two views without influence of a specific culture or world-view.

Why is that necessary?

ebrown p wrote:
My assertion is that such an objective judge does not exist.

That may be true too, but I don't see why it's relevant.
DrewDad
 
  3  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 09:01 pm
Does anyone else appreciate the irony of ebrownp complaining about people who insist that their position on an issue is the only rational one, and that everyone else is wrong?
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 09:05 pm
@joefromchicago,
Joe,

What I am saying that is that all subjective judgments are subjective.

You are always going to think that your judgement is right. Someone else is going to think that their judgement is right. That goes without saying. There is no way for either of you to know what is "objectively right" (if such a thing even exists). Objective truth is rather meaningless when two or more subjective judges disagree.

You have no more access to what is objectively right then anyone else... which means that when you disagree, you have to except the fact that they have as much chance of being "right" as they do (and then there is the real possibility that neither of you are right).

(In case I need to clarify again-- there is a difference between scientific questions, where there is a clear process for deciding what is correct, and non-scientific questions, where answers are subject to the judges culture, upbringing and untestable assumptions.)
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 09:06 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:

Quote:
Compulsory female circumcision. Theists who support it on religious grounds have a better, worse or equal take on the issue?


Did you read my last post to Thomas?

Generating competing lists of crimes committed by Atheists and Religionists won't prove anything.

This line of argument is silly.


It's not about "crimes". These are serious issues about how human rights are determined. If all worldviews are equally valid then imposing circumcision on girls should continue.
 

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