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Why do/don't you believe in a higher power? (Any HP)

For discussion and debate about anything. (Not a roleplay related forum; out-of-character commentary only.)

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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:53 am

Erythrean Thebes wrote:
Ifreann wrote:Whose idea was it to call God omnipotent because he can go anywhere?

If I tried to sell people an omnipotent car they'd be pretty mad to learn that what I meant was "off-roader".

If anything, this is why the level of vitriol from atheist advocacy confuses me and even agitates me sometimes.
What is there to be confused about? You are aware that in the US besides Muslims atheists are one of the most hated groups? You are aware that it is practically impossible in most parts of the US for an atheist to be elected? You are aware that atheists have dealt with theists trying to force them to follow their religion through the force of law. YOu do realize that untill relatively recently atheists where killed for being atheist. That the term godless is a pejorative?

If you adhere to any logically consistent formula of the religion, it obviously necessitates some form of cherry-picking things to account for the fact that no material events as we observe follow an always consistent pattern.
That makes no sense. Why would a document inspired by a perfect being need to be cherry picked?
I don't think there's any way to deny that Christian theologians, before scepticism, did exactly this. Originally, in the Roman era, they were basically famed for this. I feel that should take away whatever is intellectually threatening about the religion, but unfortunately not, I gather.
Tell that to the people who where killed because they where not of a specific religion. Tell that to the Jews who dealt with centuries of persecution due to not being Christian. Tell that to the slaves, whose "masters" supported slavery because of the things they "cherry picked" from the bible.

The number-one fallacy of atheist arguments is that they gravitate directly onto formulated principles - "God is omnipotent."
No that is what we are told by the theists when we ask them what they mean by god. When the issues or omnipotence are pointed out the theist then moves the goal post...over and over and over again.
But that's a misunderstanding of the Bible. The Bible is a chronological narrative which explains, one plot development at a time, how the relationship between God and man as it is today came into being.
That does not contradict the idea that got is omnipotent.
"God is omnipotent," totally misses the real creed of the religion, which is more like "God created a perfect world; the intrinsic evil of humanity ruined it;
WHy did god create a being that had intrinsic evil in it?
God turned to hate mankind and planned to destroy them; a remarkably purehearted individual named Noah impressed God;
If you read the story Noah was far from pure hearted, and that of course ignores all the infants as well as all the animals who had nothing to do with God.
God saved the line of Noah out of begrudging pity for him to create a new human lineage;
Sounds like a shit god. Oh and that ignores that the great flood as described in the bible never happened.
the corrupted shadow of our species then began to stumble through history in a mix of both piety and arrogance; God took pity on various pure souls, who reminded of Noah, and gave them assistance to foster what he hoped could be the resurrection of his original design for humanity; Israel was founded, but continued to struggle with the intrinsic evil in their hearts; Israel fell because the sin in man overcame his residual piety;
WHy was his design flawed in the first place?
Jesus emerged and began speaking as God on Earth;
Prove it.
mankind was triggered by the return of God and, being largely evil, were triggered to lash out and murder him because of their evil; Jesus successfully enduring their hatred and going to his grave in totally obedience to God established the model of a way for others to follow in his footsteps and also be redeemed of their sin."
So God sacrificed himself to himself in order to quiet his anger for his own mistakes.
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Ters Althria
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Postby Ters Althria » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:56 am

Genivaria wrote:
Ters Althria wrote:My apologies I was unaware chairs manifested themselves from raw wood, glue and nails.

You are now being dishonest in equating chairs to humanity.
Price that the equation is valid.

I am not a dishonest man. A craftsman's chisel shapes and works a piece of wood to it's master's desire, and yet you will not find said chisel within the wood. Yet we find in humanity that those who are exposed to worship and religion to be wholly changed. From a desert bandit to venerable father of a monastery within a blink of an eye. Although I'm sure there are thousands of other cases that are no less poignant.

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Genivaria
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Postby Genivaria » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:57 am

Asking you to actually support your claims is not 'atheist vitriol' Thebes.
General Sherman did nothing wrong, fact.
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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:57 am

Erythrean Thebes wrote:
Frievolk wrote:You're the one making the claim in the first place though

I'm sorry, it's not supposed to be a claim in such a way.
Yes it is
I don't want to try and convince you of it against your opposition.
You still believe that a god, specifically the Christian god exists,that is a claim and state as such.
I'm interested in the debate as an exercise to explore how the Christian religion can accommodate different forms of criticism and skepticism. I believe the Christian view of mankind is an ideology, suitable for those who identify with its precepts.
And one of the forms of criticism is that there is no reason to think that a god exists, let alone your god, which I am pretty damn sure does not exist.
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The Grims
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Postby The Grims » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:58 am

Ters Althria wrote:
Genivaria wrote:You are now being dishonest in equating chairs to humanity.
Price that the equation is valid.

I am not a dishonest man. A craftsman's chisel shapes and works a piece of wood to it's master's desire, and yet you will not find said chisel within the wood. Yet we find in humanity that those who are exposed to worship and religion to be wholly changed. From a desert bandit to venerable father of a monastery within a blink of an eye. Although I'm sure there are thousands of other cases that are no less poignant.


Indeed. In Hindu temples for instance.
So I guess the Hindus are right.

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The Grims
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Postby The Grims » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:00 pm

Ters Althria wrote:
Genivaria wrote:You are now being dishonest in equating chairs to humanity.
Price that the equation is valid.

I am not a dishonest man.

You are female ?

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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:00 pm

Ters Althria wrote:
Genivaria wrote:You are now being dishonest in equating chairs to humanity.
Price that the equation is valid.

I am not a dishonest man. A craftsman's chisel shapes and works a piece of wood to it's master's desire, and yet you will not find said chisel within the wood. Yet we find in humanity that those who are exposed to worship and religion to be wholly changed. From a desert bandit to venerable father of a monastery within a blink of an eye. Although I'm sure there are thousands of other cases that are no less poignant.
Show that it was a god that made the change rather then something natural. Explain why it is mutually contradictory religions that have this result. And Once again,show that the universe was created. Oh and answer my question, how does a person differentiate between something that forms naturally and something that is created.
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Genivaria
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Postby Genivaria » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:00 pm

Ters Althria wrote:
Genivaria wrote:You are now being dishonest in equating chairs to humanity.
Price that the equation is valid.

I am not a dishonest man. A craftsman's chisel shapes and works a piece of wood to it's master's desire, and yet you will not find said chisel within the wood. Yet we find in humanity that those who are exposed to worship and religion to be wholly changed. From a desert bandit to venerable father of a monastery within a blink of an eye. Although I'm sure there are thousands of other cases that are no less poignant.

Yes we know that religion can change a person, for both good and evil.
That however has no bearing on the validity of their beliefs.

Their are Muslim in the ME who shelter American forces based on religious custom of looking after one's guests, that doesn't mean that their religion is actually true.
General Sherman did nothing wrong, fact.
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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:01 pm

The Grims wrote:
Ters Althria wrote:I am not a dishonest man. A craftsman's chisel shapes and works a piece of wood to it's master's desire, and yet you will not find said chisel within the wood. Yet we find in humanity that those who are exposed to worship and religion to be wholly changed. From a desert bandit to venerable father of a monastery within a blink of an eye. Although I'm sure there are thousands of other cases that are no less poignant.


Indeed. In Hindu temples for instance.
So I guess the Hindus are right.

Happens in the various different forms of Buddhism as well, so they must be right. Oh and the various polytheistic religions,so they must be right. Oh...and for atheists to, in fact leaving religion also wholly changes a person, often for the better so they must also be right.
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Recheve
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Postby Recheve » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:03 pm

Finding God was a gradual process for me. I always attended United Church, but I didn't really understand God or Christianity. I prayed for probably the first time in Grade 6, and it made me feel much better at a very difficult time for me. I obviously didn't really know what I believed, but the physical act of praying gave me some comfort. It at the very least made me feel less alone, at a time when I otherwise would have been overcome with despair, and at a very young age. From that point on I wasn't super religious, but I would pray from time to time to express my thankfulness for certain things and privileges, to repent when I felt I'd done something wrong, or to ask for guidance or clarity. I had plenty of doubts, but in my heart felt that someone was listening, and like I said the act of praying in and of itself gave me comfort.

It wasn't really until somebody close to me died that I truly became a believer in God. Events like that obviously make you think really hard about a lot of things, and I wasn't doing great for a pretty long time. At my worst point, I was sitting in a little cove near a lake, staring out at the water and feeling pretty helpless against the crushing onslaught of it all. Suddenly I felt the person I'd lost close to me, as though they were standing over me. Then some of the clouds parted, the sun illuminated the area for just a moment, and I felt a tingle in my fingertips. I later talked to my Mom and she told me that on the same day, she was staring out our window, looking at the sky, blue and beautiful. She herself was experiencing her darkest moment since the funeral, and was experiencing one of her life's lowest moments. Then, out of nowhere, a short little flash of rain seemed to drop down just in front of the window, and in the sunlight it was golden, gleaming and beautiful. She said that she felt no doubt in that moment that it was our lost one telling her everything would be ok.

I believe in God, and little else. I believe that religion should be a personal experience; nobody needs to know exactly what you believe, and nobody should ever know what you say or think when you pray. I know that Atheists find comfort in believing that there's nothing beyond us, and that when we die, that's it. I believe Neil deGrasse Tyson explained the beauty of that belief better than anybody to whom I've ever spoken or listened. I also understand that those engaged in organized religion find comfort in their communities, their traditions, their belief systems and their customs. Personally, I find God to be all about faith, and it's impossible to find Him any other way. I do not know what God looks like, what He is, or even what His essential nature is or could be. However, I have faith that there is something beyond the meaningless and futile ordeal we call life, and that's what sustains me.

TL;DR I started believing in God because when I see no path towards comfort, looking inwards past the pessimism and despair reveals a tiny pearl of faith, and if that everlasting drive for solace in life isn't the mark of God, then I don't know what is.
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Swindenland
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Postby Swindenland » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:04 pm

Multiple reasons for me being an atheist:

-I'm a hardcore anti-traditionalist, and since I always knew there were so many religions, nobody could prove that the catholic god is the real one, and thus I wanted to rebel.
-I love science and the more I learned about biology and physics the more my disbelief grew.
-During adolescence I was a socialist, so I also had a political motivation against the church.
-History tells us that the church almost always stifled progress and criticism.
-Truly religious people of other religions are idiocratic, but not much more than Christians. Again, traditionalism and group supremacism.
-Possibly also confirmation bias
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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:06 pm

Recheve wrote:Finding God was a gradual process for me. I always attended United Church, but I didn't really understand God or Christianity. I prayed for probably the first time in Grade 6, and it made me feel much better at a very difficult time for me. I obviously didn't really know what I believed, but the physical act of praying gave me some comfort. It at the very least made me feel less alone, at a time when I otherwise would have been overcome with despair, and at a very young age. From that point on I wasn't super religious, but I would pray from time to time to express my thankfulness for certain things and privileges, to repent when I felt I'd done something wrong, or to ask for guidance or clarity. I had plenty of doubts, but in my heart felt that someone was listening, and like I said the act of praying in and of itself gave me comfort.

It wasn't really until somebody close to me died that I truly became a believer in God. Events like that obviously make you think really hard about a lot of things, and I wasn't doing great for a pretty long time. At my worst point, I was sitting in a little cove near a lake, staring out at the water and feeling pretty helpless against the crushing onslaught of it all. Suddenly I felt the person I'd lost close to me, as though they were standing over me. Then some of the clouds parted, the sun illuminated the area for just a moment, and I felt a tingle in my fingertips. I later talked to my Mom and she told me that on the same day, she was staring out our window, looking at the sky, blue and beautiful. She herself was experiencing her darkest moment since the funeral, and was experiencing one of her life's lowest moments. Then, out of nowhere, a short little flash of rain seemed to drop down just in front of the window, and in the sunlight it was golden, gleaming and beautiful. She said that she felt no doubt in that moment that it was our lost one telling her everything would be ok.

I believe in God, and little else. I believe that religion should be a personal experience; nobody needs to know exactly what you believe, and nobody should ever know what you say or think when you pray. I know that Atheists find comfort in believing that there's nothing beyond us, and that when we die, that's it. I believe Neil deGrasse Tyson explained the beauty of that belief better than anybody to whom I've ever spoken or listened. I also understand that those engaged in organized religion find comfort in their communities, their traditions, their belief systems and their customs. Personally, I find God to be all about faith, and it's impossible to find Him any other way. I do not know what God looks like, what He is, or even what His essential nature is or could be. However, I have faith that there is something beyond the meaningless and futile ordeal we call life, and that's what sustains me.

TL;DR I started believing in God because when I see no path towards comfort, looking inwards past the pessimism and despair reveals a tiny pearl of faith, and if that everlasting drive for solace in life isn't the mark of God, then I don't know what is.

If having a god is what you need to go forward then I am glad you believe. In my point of view, you are the one who gave you your own strength to move forward. It is due to your own strength that you got past your pessimism.

Oh as a note, as an atheist I don't feel pessimistic.
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Catholic Britannia
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Postby Catholic Britannia » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:06 pm

Quinque viæ:

Unmoved Mover
First Cause
Contingency Argument (necessary for there to be at least one eternal being)
Argument from Degree (a flawed existence cannot be its own source)
Final Cause (things appear to exist with purpose in mind)

Read your Summa Theologica

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Atheris
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Postby Atheris » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:07 pm

Well, I had some sort of personal experience with God. It's weird and kinda cheesy, though.

Anyway, here's what happened. This was back when I was agnostic but leaning towards atheist; I looked at an oil lamp at a restaurant (these are encased in glass) and I thought "God, if you're real, make this flame rise." And it rose. I thought, "God, if you're real, make this flame flicker." And the flame flickered.

Since then, I've been a Christian.
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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:08 pm

Catholic Britannia wrote:Quinque viæ:

Unmoved Mover
First Cause
Contingency Argument (necessary for there to be at least one eternal being)
The first three are the same thing. Your special pleading is noted. Now show that a universe has not always existed.
Argument from Degree (a flawed existence cannot be its own source)
Why?
Final Cause (things appear to exist with purpose in mind)
Prove that the appearance of purpose actually shows that there is purpose.
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Ters Althria
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Postby Ters Althria » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:08 pm

Neutraligon wrote: Show that it was a god that made the change rather then something natural. Explain why it is mutually contradictory religions that have this result. And Once again,show that the universe was created. Oh and answer my question, how does a person differentiate between something that forms naturally and something that is created.

My friend as I tried to point out in a previous post. You assume that a God is not a natural phenomena when every tribe and people on this planet has had one, or many gods. The effect of a religious event like a Damascene conversion happen within the mind and soul of a believer and they may have similar experience within another religion entirely. But that is not more or less an indictment of a diety or a practice but rather the workings of a creator being upon the soul of mankind.
As pertaining to the difference between what is natural and what is created is entirely subjective to the contextual perspective of the observer. In other words there is no difference but an arbitrary distinction made by ourselves.

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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:09 pm

Atheris wrote:Well, I had some sort of personal experience with God. It's weird and kinda cheesy, though.

Anyway, here's what happened. This was back when I was agnostic but leaning towards atheist; I looked at an oil lamp at a restaurant (these are encased in glass) and I thought "God, if you're real, make this flame rise." And it rose. I thought, "God, if you're real, make this flame flicker." And the flame flickered.

Since then, I've been a Christian.

...This makes less then no sense.
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Genivaria
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Postby Genivaria » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:09 pm

Neutraligon wrote:
The Grims wrote:
Indeed. In Hindu temples for instance.
So I guess the Hindus are right.

Happens in the various different forms of Buddhism as well, so they must be right. Oh and the various polytheistic religions,so they must be right. Oh...and for atheists to, in fact leaving religion also wholly changes a person, often for the better so they must also be right.

I would post that there is a great difficulty in finding an argument for one's own religion that cannot also be used for all religions.
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Atheris
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Postby Atheris » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:10 pm

Neutraligon wrote:
Atheris wrote:Well, I had some sort of personal experience with God. It's weird and kinda cheesy, though.

Anyway, here's what happened. This was back when I was agnostic but leaning towards atheist; I looked at an oil lamp at a restaurant (these are encased in glass) and I thought "God, if you're real, make this flame rise." And it rose. I thought, "God, if you're real, make this flame flicker." And the flame flickered.

Since then, I've been a Christian.

...This makes less then no sense.

Well, either my mind's optimistic, playing tricks on me, or God exists. I believe in the third, but the first two are possible.

Tried it with a lighter at my house, and it worked then, too. I dunno.
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Recheve
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Postby Recheve » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:10 pm

Neutraligon wrote:If having a god is what you need to go forward then I am glad you believe. In my point of view, you are the one who gave you your own strength to move forward. It is due to your own strength that you got past your pessimism.


You could very well be right, and I truly appreciate the sentiment.

Also, for any interested, here's the Neil deGrasse Tyson video I referenced:
Last edited by Recheve on Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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The Grims
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Postby The Grims » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:11 pm

Atheris wrote:
Neutraligon wrote:...This makes less then no sense.

Well, either my mind's optimistic, playing tricks on me, or God exists. I believe in the third, but the first two are possible.

Tried it with a lighter at my house, and it worked then, too. I dunno.

You could have telekinetic powers. Maybe call Xavier ;)

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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:14 pm

Ters Althria wrote:
Neutraligon wrote: Show that it was a god that made the change rather then something natural. Explain why it is mutually contradictory religions that have this result. And Once again,show that the universe was created. Oh and answer my question, how does a person differentiate between something that forms naturally and something that is created.

My friend as I tried to point out in a previous post. You assume that a God is not a natural phenomena when every tribe and people on this planet has had one, or many gods.
That does not show that a God is a natural phenomena, only that humans tend to share a common psychology. Not really a surprise given we are all the same species.

The effect of a religious event like a Damascene conversion happen within the mind and soul of a believer and they may have similar experience within another religion entirely.
First show that souls exist. Second, again all you are showing is that humans have a common psychology. The fact that it can happen with different and contradictory religions or even in the non-religious goes to show this is nothing more than the human brain doing what the human brain does. It does not show the cause of these changes is a god.
But that is not more or less an indictment of a diety or a practice but rather the workings of a creator being upon the soul of mankind.
It doesn't show a diety at all, as mentioned before it only shows that humans tend to have a common psychology. It does not show what the source of those feeling are.
[quot]As pertaining to the difference between what is natural and what is created is entirely subjective to the contextual perspective of the observer. In other words there is no difference but an arbitrary distinction made by ourselves.[/quote] Oh?
Ters Althria wrote:My apologies I was unaware chairs manifested themselves from raw wood, glue and nails.

Guess then a chair can come about naturally since the distinction is arbitrary.
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Genivaria
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Postby Genivaria » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:16 pm

The Grims wrote:
Atheris wrote:Well, either my mind's optimistic, playing tricks on me, or God exists. I believe in the third, but the first two are possible.

Tried it with a lighter at my house, and it worked then, too. I dunno.

You could have telekinetic powers. Maybe call Xavier ;)

I mean between two unlikely scenarios I see pyrokinesis as no less likely than 'miracle'.
My issue is why is it that modern miracles are always so unimpressive? Let's see a terrorist exploding and not one person around being injured or a tragic war starting and all the guns just suddenly jam up?
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Neutraligon
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Postby Neutraligon » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:16 pm

Atheris wrote:
Neutraligon wrote:...This makes less then no sense.

Well, either my mind's optimistic, playing tricks on me, or God exists. I believe in the third, but the first two are possible.

Tried it with a lighter at my house, and it worked then, too. I dunno.
Even if I accepted that what you did was the result of a god, how did you get to the Christian god from that? And...candle flames change all the time. How did you remove the other possibilities, like confirmation bias.
Last edited by Neutraligon on Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Ifreann
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Postby Ifreann » Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:23 pm

Ters Althria wrote:
Neutraligon wrote:Prove there is a creation.

My apologies I was unaware chairs manifested themselves from raw wood, glue and nails.

We know how chairs come about because we can watch people making them.

How many universes have you seen created to be so confident that a universe implies a creator in the same way that a chair implies a carpenter?


Erythrean Thebes wrote:
Ifreann wrote:Whose idea was it to call God omnipotent because he can go anywhere?

If I tried to sell people an omnipotent car they'd be pretty mad to learn that what I meant was "off-roader".

If anything, this is why the level of vitriol from atheist advocacy confuses me and even agitates me sometimes. If you adhere to any logically consistent formula of the religion, it obviously necessitates some form of cherry-picking things to account for the fact that no material events as we observe follow an always consistent pattern. I don't think there's any way to deny that Christian theologians, before scepticism, did exactly this. Originally, in the Roman era, they were basically famed for this. I feel that should take away whatever is intellectually threatening about the religion, but unfortunately not, I gather.

I think your mistake is in assuming that atheists are arguing with Christians purely as an intellectual exercise. Rather, atheists are arguing with Christians because Christians run our countries and write the laws that we will have to obey. So of course there is vitriol. Politics is a high-stakes game. And of course we are arguing against God being omnipotent. That's what Christians tell us they believe. If it's fallacious to respond to the arguments before us instead of running off to engage with theology that actually makes totally different arguments then fine, I guess this whole thing is a fallacy, but it's a necessary fallacy. You don't get gay marriage legalised by arguing with long-dead theologians.
Mistake Not My Current State Of Joshing Gentle Banter For The Awesome And Terrible Majesty Of The Towering Seas Of Snark That Are Themselves The Mere Milquetoast Shallows Fringing My Vast Oceans Of Sarcasm
He/Him

Dangerous this Jack o' Hearts.
With his kiss
the riot
starts

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