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  • Our picks

    • Here's an interesting episode that breaks down popular fallacies that many theists who are knowledgeable about the arguments prefer to steer clear of: 
       
       
      • 3 replies
    • Fundamentalist Christians tend to say either you are a Christian or you are not a Christian.  That may be true for the irrational tribal identity of their churches, but it does not make sense in terms of philosophy and theology. If you read the Bible as deliberate metaphor, as symbolic allegory, not as literal history, then it is possible to retain the ethical value of the texts while accepting none of the surface claims.  The value of the Bible is enhanced by assuming the original authors did not intend that any of their supernatural poetry should be read as literal fact.
        • Like
      • 39 replies
    • One of the benefits of logic is the ability to test whether a particular proposition is true or not.  It often follows the progession: A=B, B=C, C does not equal D; therefore, the proposition that A=D is not likely to be true.  With this in mind, let's look at a particular proposition and follow the progression to its logical conclusion.  
       
      If logic is the absolute standard for reasoning , then everyone should either agree with the conclusion, or, if disagreeing, be able to point out a flaw in the logic.  Let's begin:
       
       
       
      PROPOSITION: god is both all-loving and all-powerful. 
       
      OBSERVATION: Evil exists
       
      GIVEN:
      A. If god is both able and willing to prevent evil, then evil would not exist.
      B. If god is neither able nor willing to prevent evil, then god is neither all-loving nor all-powerful. 
       
      PROGRESSION:
      1. If god is able to prevent evil, but not willing to, then god is not all-loving. 
      2. If god is willing to prevent evil, but not able to, then god is not all-powerful.
       
      CONCLUSION: The proposition that god is both all-loving and all-powerful is not true.
       
      DISCUSSION: It is possible that god is all-loving but not all-powerful.  It is possible that god is all-powerful but not all-loving.  It is possible that god is neither all-loving nor all-powerful, which raises the question: why worship god?
       
      But it is not possible for god to be both all-loving and all-powerful. 
       
        • Thanks
        • Like
      • 85 replies
    • My ex christian beliefs are as follows in 10 simple points, each of which has been the focus of one debate / discussion or another around here: 
       
      1 ) I believe that all religions are man made social constructs geared towards politicizing ancient mythology and folklore. 
      2 ) I believe that no one really knows with certainty the answer to the question of origins or destination. 
      3 ) I believe that the bible is demonstrably false from the outset as a guide to the truth of the universe or the human condition. 
      4 ) I believe that anything basing itself on the assumption that the bible is true is automatically false, as the bible is demonstrably false. 
      5 ) I believe that morality is an evolved concept which continues to evolve and has never been static or handed down from on high. 
      6 ) I believe that the morality of the biblical writings is long since outdated and mostly irrelevant to modern society. 
      7 ) I believe that modern scholarship has revealed the truth about the biblical writings and the evolving theistic concepts contained therein. 
      8 ) I believe that it's both intellectually honest and well intended to expose what truths can be demonstrated about the bible and christianity, through counter apologetics. 
      9 ) I believe that as painful as it may be at times, it's ultimately for the greater good that christianity and similar religions are losing membership and declining into the future under the weight of their own growing lack of relevance. 
      10 ) I believe that humanity doesn't need the fluff and circus show of religion in order for people to do what's right, be decent, and get along. 
       
       
      What do you believe???? 
        • Thanks
        • Like
      • 71 replies
    • Is there sufficient evidence to believe complex life could have evolved on its own from non-life without some intelligent creative force?  Is it at all plausible that some intelligent being, perhaps from another universe, could have been the creator of the complex life on our planet (and any other planet in this universe that may have complex life) using evolution as a tool? 
       
      • 67 replies
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    • walterpthefirst
      On the possibility that aik won't be answering my question to him, I'd better explain the thinking behind it.  This was the question.     If you want to persuade us with evidence, who's standard of evidence must you satisfy?     The thinking behind this question relates back to the example of Witness A and Witness B giving evidence in a court of law.  I asked aik about this yesterday.     Suppose there are two witnesses who give evidence in a court of law. Witness A says that he was at a certain place at a certain time, but can provide no other evidence than his word that this is true. Witness B says that he was at a certain place at a certain time and his testimony is supported by the testimony of others who saw him there at that time, by CCTV footage of him there, by evidence of his phone call from that place and by evidence of his use of his credit card there. Which testimony, A or B, will the court be more likely to believe, aik?   aik replied... Of course B.     But there is a paradox involved here.  Witness A may indeed be telling the complete truth.  He was at a certain place at a certain time.  But because he cannot support his testimony with hard, objective evidence like witness B, the court is less likely to believe his testimony and more likely to believe the testimony of witness B.   So, even though witness A told the truth, he is not believed.   And this is the same situation when it comes to aik's testimony to us.  He may indeed be telling us the complete truth.  But because he cannot support his testimony with hard, objective evidence, we are unlikely to believe him.   Please note that I am not saying that he is lying.  He could be telling us the complete truth.  But without hard, objective evidence to support his testimony his words do not satisfy our standard of acceptable evidence.  And so we are unlikely to believe him - just as the court does not believe the truthful testimony of witness A.   Aik himself agreed that the court would be likely to believe witness B's testimony because it was supported by hard, objective evidence.  He clearly understands this.  That objective evidence is more persuasive than an unsupported testimony.  Otherwise he would not have answered as he did, agreeing that B's testimony is more believable.     But does he also understand that to us he is like witness A, unable to support his testimony with objective evidence?   Does he understand that to us his unsupported testimony is not hard, objective evidence, even if he believes it is?   Does he understand that believable hard, objective evidence must exist independently of his testimony?   Does he understand that what he has seen does not exist independently of him and so is not objective evidence?   Does he understand that even if he is telling the truth, we will do as the court did with witness A and be more likely to disbelieve him?     Thank you,   Walter.                  
    • aik
      Thank you for the great answer. I have to reply to it. But i need time. 
    • TheRedneckProfessor
      Not that your post needs anything added to it, it's pretty damn good as it is; but it does bear pointing out that jesus told his disciples, "These things, and even greater things, shall ye do in my name."  He was speaking specifically about miracles--healings, raising people from the dead, giving sight to the blind.   If this were true, why are there still hospitals?  Morgues?  Funeral homes?  Why aren't christians out there doing greater works than jesus? 
    • DarkBishop
      @Weezer   I just went through and edited out some typos and tried to make it a little.less absolute. Would you mind reading it again and see if that seems a little better?   Thanks,   DB
    • pantheory
      Egarcito tries to fit in, which he does IMO by sometimes using the same language as he sees on a thread. I vouch for Edgarcito as a good person. Christians sometimes say something like this: "I feel sorry for you since you don't understand or have faith in "blah blah blah blah," and they are sincere.  And I repeat the same thing back to them in jest: " I honestly feel sorry for you since you don't understand "blah blah blah blah," and that we are simply animals with more intelligence, but maybe less-so if one believes in the fantasies of religion"
    • DarkBishop
      Thank you for your advice. I can see your point about not making absolutes. But the flood of Noah, to me, is an absolute. There was no world wide biblical flood of Noah. Anything other than a world wide flood is not the flood of Noah. I know there were massive coastal floods as glacial lakes poured into the ocean. And other large flooding that explain the inspiration for the stories. But there never was a flood like the flood of Noah. It just didn't happen.    That is why I made the flood of Noah an absolute. The flood of Noah was a specific type of flood that never happened. I will do some editing as I fix my typos though. And make some of it a little less absolute. Maybe it will resonate better.     When has Edgarcito been a nice Christian? Must of been before I came here 🤣🤣🤣      DB    
    • pantheory
      Astreja, Be gentle with aik. He's a really nice Christian like Edgarcito. He lives in Russia where it could get to 40 degrees below zero outside and he probably would still go to church and risk freezing to death.   People there are very familiar with global cooling 🥶   It's cold enough where you live, -11 degrees.
    • Weezer
      I agree.  You have some excelent ideas, but I suggest some slight modifications if you wish to be more effective in your excelent arguments.  Change some of the absolutes, such as "it never happened", to something like, "there is no proof it happened this way."   And I don't know where you got the idea there was no flood.   It is my understanding after decades of study that there were huge floods in many places in the world.  But not one that covered the whole world at the same time. The more I study, the more I see threads of "truth" in many biblical stories.  But there is much modification of the stories.  Making "absolute" statements when you can't prove them, erodes your believeability. It suggests bias, and not being objective. Keep up the good work!
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