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Problems with Atheism

 
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 10:47 pm
@ebrown p,
That you claim to be an atheist, and then describe the term "imaginary friend" as ridicule is more than a little ironically hilarious. If someone imagines that there is a god--and absent reliable evidence, that's all they are doing--they have an imaginary friend. The comparison is not between "world views," the comparison is between types of evidence, blind faith as opposed to experiential expectations. I'm not surprised that you don't see that, though, given the ferocity with which you have defended religion in this thread . . . Mr. "Atheist."
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 10:49 pm
@ebrown p,
That's not an example of an atheist stating that rejecting god unlocks "a better understanding of some truth about meaning and morality", which was your claim. Calling god an imaginary friend, and belief in him a superstition, says nothing at all about meaning or morality. It only says something about a factual claim, and the empirical evidence for it.
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 10:54 pm
@Setanta,
There is a big difference between respectful disagreement in a spirit of tolerance and mockery.

Just because I don't believe in god doesn't mean I am not religious. Of course this depends on the definition of "religious". If "religion" means holding to and living by unprovable assertions, then I am certainly religious.

((maybe I am a religious atheist))
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 10:58 pm
@Thomas,
Come on Thomas... even accepting the rather dubious claim that "imaginary friend" is not intended as a put down, the exact quote was "Beliefs which are based on experience and observation have a much better foundation".
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 10:58 pm
@ebrown p,
See Thomas' most recent post, because he states the case more succinctly and concisely than did i. It is no more mockery to state a truth than it is a personal attack. If you imagine that there is a god, which is all you are doing absent proof, you have an imaginary friend (unless, of course, you're sufficiently paranoid to think this "god" is out to get you). Saying as much constitutes neither personal insult nor mockery. Unless, of course, you imagine that no one is ever to disagree with you, which i become increasingly convinced is the basis for the offense you take here.

However, i must congratulate you on the entertainment value of this idiotic thread. It is even more idiotic than the previous thread, and has become even more delightfully hilarious in the last several pages.
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:00 pm
@Setanta,
Thank you Setanta. I am enjoying it as well.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:00 pm
@ebrown p,
Of course they have a better foundation. Blind faith is no foundation at all, it's just saying you believe something because you want to, not because you have any plausible reason to believe it. Why is that so hard for you to understand?
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:05 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
Come on Thomas... even accepting the rather dubious claim that "imaginary friend" is not intended as a put down,

So what if it's a put-down? If people in the street walk up to me and say "wow, you're really fat, buddy", they very well may intend it as a put-down. What difference does it make? It's still true that I'm obese.

ebrown p wrote:
the exact quote was "Beliefs which are based on experience and observation have a much better foundation".

Or in other words, evidence and observation are good reasons for believing something; imagination and wishful thinking, not so much. How is that wrong?
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:08 pm
@Thomas,
Quote:

ebrown p wrote:
the exact quote was "Beliefs which are based on experience and observation have a much better foundation".

Or in other words, evidence and observation are good reasons for believing something; imagination and wishful thinking, not so much. How is that wrong? Signature


You are changing the question-- the challenge was for me to find a place where someone asserted that non-god world views are better than god-based world views.

And that is what I did.

Are you now wanted to argue that non-god world views are better than god-based world views? (because that would be funny).
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:12 pm
@ebrown p,
Now you're trying to move the goal posts. Below is precisely the quote to which i responded:

Quote:
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.


That argument surely is something you made up, because i know of no one here who has argued that a world view without god has a better understanding of some truth about meaning and morality. You have so far failed to provide a quote to support that claim.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:17 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
You are changing the question-- the challenge was for me to find a place where someone asserted that non-god world views are better than god-based world views.

Not true. The truth is that you, once again, are confusing cause and effect. The cause is that some people have better-supported worldviews than others. The effect is that those people tend to flush god down the same drain they flushed unicorns, pixies, and witches. I don't see anyone claiming that rejecting god causes your world view to be any better.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 11:40 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:

There is a big difference between respectful disagreement in a spirit of tolerance and mockery.

Just because I don't believe in god doesn't mean I am not religious. Of course this depends on the definition of "religious". If "religion" means holding to and living by unprovable assertions, then I am certainly religious.

((maybe I am a religious atheist))




Personally, the mockery of theist beliefs occurs in me when the theists are asserting their right to control what happens on the basis of their belief in a god.

For instance, believe it or not, I normally get along very well with christians.

However, when some of the Christians on this board began to demean Islam as superstitious nonsense, I was really incensed and began to mock them, and use words like "My imaginary friend is better than your imaginary friend."

Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 01:15 am
Still waiting to read what problems Atheists have...

I see now what ebrownp is doing. He's saying that you can't use geometry notes on your social studies test. He states that science and math cannot objectively arrive at answers to moral queries.

To that I say: Duh.

It seems that ebrown recognizes the difference between religion and culture (his reply about female circumcision not being a part of religious doctrine). I guess I'm confused as to why he believes that the Atheist's theory on a natural universe (a religious theory), must apply to moral dilemmas (social/cultural dilemmas).

Dawkins himself has explained in no uncertain terms how horrific the darwinian principle of survival of the fittest would be if applied socially.

I'm reminded of religious conversations I've had about science topics, and how I've had to many times in the past explain that the big bang theory is a separate theory from evolution.

Atheism is not a theory on morality at all. It is a theory about the nature of the universe.

The phrase "good without god" comes to mind. Atheists don't get their morality from atheism, they get it from life. If an Atheist and a Theist can come to the same moral conclusion about an act, then we can conclude that Atheists do not require anything additional to formulate moral standards. In the end, they are the individual's morals, not a part of a orthodox standard.

The part of a person that accepts or rejects the hypothesis of a god, unicorn, or wizard, is not the same part of them that makes moral and ethical assignments.

T
K
O
0 Replies
 
fresco
 
  3  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 01:33 am
@ebrown p,
On this thread, you call yourself "religious" because you have a sense of "wonder" with aspects of your existence which you cannot account for by "provable" methods. But this is not "religion" for the majority who use that word. You are merely indulging in what Wittgenstein called "language on holiday". "Religion" for most is a system of social interactions involving "approval of a deity" by means of conformity/coercion. It is not, as you imply, a personal choice of some unprovable assumptions about the nature of "reality". This point, underpins the "strawman" accusations levelled at you in your portrayal of atheism (or even Atheism) as a purely intellectual position. Note also that your simplistic concept of "proof" also yields to such criticism since the selection of "evidence" has a social component even in science (according to Kuhn).
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 06:30 am
@dlowan,
dlowan wrote:

Personally, the mockery of theist beliefs occurs in me when the theists are asserting their right to control what happens on the basis of their belief in a god.

For instance, believe it or not, I normally get along very well with christians.

However, when some of the Christians on this board began to demean Islam as superstitious nonsense, I was really incensed and began to mock them, and use words like "My imaginary friend is better than your imaginary friend."

This is where I thought this thread started from. I took the initial post to be a reaction to the unprovoked mockery on another thread of those celebrating Easter. I see the logic there. If some group is off quietly celebrating a religious holiday, why do a drive-by on them? I think it would be a different matter if someone was in your face demanding you join them for Easter service.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 07:00 am
@engineer,
Did you look at the other thread? In that thread, Brown does exactly what he does here--he makes a series of unsubstantiated accusations against atheists. If he had another thread in mind, he certainly did not refer to it. He just opened a thread and started laying about him with a blunt instrument, hoping to brain some atheists.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 07:40 am
@engineer,
Oh? I didn't know about the easter thread.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 10:54 am
@engineer,
engineer wrote:
If some group is off quietly celebrating a religious holiday, why do a drive-by on them?

What "drive-by" are you talking about? All I've seen is threads started by atheists to express how this particular religious spring rite bemuses them. If, instead, a Christian had started an Easter thread somewhere, and we had butted in and mocked them, I agree that would have been an unacceptable drive-by. But I'm not aware of any thread where that happened. Are you?
joefromchicago
 
  2  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 11:55 am
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
Here is the challenge...

Take any item in the list of what "justified killing" entails or doesn't entail and provide a mathematical or scientific argument for your position. I don't think there is an objective rational proof of any one of them that doesn't rely on an unprovable assertion that isn't accepted by other human beings.

I can't provide a mathematical or scientific argument for my position. I can't imagine why I would want to. You're the one who is imposing an inappropriate scientific standard on morality, but then that's merely begging the question. You assume that morality requires scientific certainty in order to be valid, but that's not established, not by a long shot (indeed, you haven't even bothered to address that point).

But we can cut this discussion short if you would answer one question: do you believe that there is such a thing as "morality?"
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 01:25 pm
@Thomas,
My understanding is that eb started this thread in response to the Christians are Ruining my Easter thread.
 

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