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Joshpantera

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Joshpantera last won the day on April 2

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About Joshpantera

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    I'm an over 25 year deconvert. Gone off exploring a lot of science, religion, philosophy, biblical criticism, archaeology, eastern mystical content, and esoteric comparative content. Atheistic about gods with a spiritual side about nature.

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    I don't believe in god(s)

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  1. Yes, some public and some were private. But this was a pressing issue a few years back. Let's see if @webmdave can do anything about the image issue.
  2. They have no problem making impossible claims. We can dismiss the claims but trying to return with a claim that we know in certain terms, which is what the word gnostic is in context, that they are false goes beyond what can be substantiated. Brahman isn't as internally inconsistent as YHWH. So trying and play with that for a while. How do you dismiss Brahman if he's not logically inconsistent? Remember, Brahman is impersonal, immanent and transcendent informing consciousness, framed as the very fabric of existence itself. The contradictions of YHWH being omni-present, but not actually omni-present, for instance, don't apply to YHWH in the same way. Yes, that is the traditional context of gnostic versus agnostic. Changing that context changes the whole thing. The argument for gnostic atheism involves changing the traditional context around for the sake of claiming gnostic instead of agnostic atheism. But it hardly seems worth all of the jumping through hoops and trying to change the context and everyone's understanding in order to attain it. It means what it means. It could mean new born babies and infants too. Don't know and don't believe can mean any numbers of things in reality. The point is to not try and act as if it doesn't. Theists hate this. They were not born theistic, it was learned. Their children are not born theistic, either. None of us were. We lacked theistic belief until someone specifically taught it to us. It's not different than with tribesman or any similar example. What you're reaching for here is something I've called, "intellectual atheism." That clearly distinguishes between raw, natural atheism and atheism of an intellectual variety. A baby or tribesman isn't an intellectual atheist, no. But Dawkins, Dillihunty, you, and I are intellectual atheists. I'm taking an intellectual, agnostic-atheist position in fact. It's all described, quite frank, quite clever, and to the point. And at no point do I have to try and change context, bring in modern varieties of definition completely out of context to the traditional issue at hand, or any of these other handicaps along the way in order to use gnostic atheist to describe something who is honestly agnostic at the bottom of it, and intellectual about their atheism. That's it in a nut shell. It's impossible to disprove YHWH, Santa, Nessy, Bugaloo, or whatever else you'd prefer as an example. You could have just missed Santa, Nessy, Bugaloo or whatever else. It's an impossible situation to take on the burden of proof any which way it's spun. And that gives all imaginary suggestions an equal footing. But that's the argument. God is just as ridiculous as Santa, Nessy or Bugaloo. God has no better footing as any of these. And how foolish are these suggestions? Pretty foolish, I'd say. So is god by the same exact standard. It's a way of not fighting an up hill battle. Sure, god 'could" exist, but so what? It's not compelling. There's no good evidence. And there's little reason to take it seriously, just like these other examples of equal things that are beyond disproving. It is fun. That's what can happen from trying to debate the meaning of "knowledge." We know that the traditional terms mean by it. And they didn't mean legal or some other non-philosophical meaning. That confuses the situation from the outset. Both the gnostic theist and the gnostic atheist seem to have to try and change the goal posts in order to find a way of presenting their arguments. Where the traditional, philosophical definition is set aside and what is essentially an agnostic position (not certain) is labeled as gnostic anyways, even though it's founded on uncertain oriented knowledge. The certainty of the claims goes so far then falls apart.
  3. I think deism is unreasonable, myself. But the god in that case is an intelligent entity existing beyond our universe. It's something with intelligence that sets the universe into motion. We can't go beyond the universe to disprove it so we can't get away with arguing that's it's disproven. And we can't claim to know that it doesn't exist, any more than the deist can claim to know that it does. In both cases it boils to belief or faith that such and such doesn't exist or does exist. Because because knowing for certain. And the deist may draw on subjective type reasoning, but that doesn't make it objective truth. These are some of the issues that an atheist faces in debate. I'll stick to a fact based analysis. How do you know that there is no time outside of the universe? Or matter? That's a an assumption on your part. And as it goes, the only beginning of the universe theory that I'm aware of is the Hawking-Penrose singularity theory from the 70's, which, was falsified as a theory in the 90's when a positive cosmological constant was discovered. What the means is that we don't know if the universe had a fixed beginning. That's the fact based analysis. It's unknown. We're agnostic on the issue per science. Also, theories now suggest a multiverse of universes like our own extending out forever beyond our own universe. If that were the case then space and matter and time would exist beyond our range of perception, our visible universe merely being a range of perception around the earth in which we can observe. The rest of the universe extending beyond. More and more beyond that. These are not proven, so, all does it outline more and more reasons why "agnostic" position taking in a religious or even scientific setting stands out as dominant time and time again. The reason being is that as we push towards these big issues knowledge wanes more and more. Till we end up completely, "not-knowing," by the time we reach the biggest questions of all. Also, there's a default issue going on here. The universe or multiverse or however we view it, becomes necessarily eternal. Because any beginning given then requires the question of what was before that beginning? If you push back a series of beginnings that require something before each beginning, the beginnings were never really beginnings and the past becomes "past-eternal" anyways. So there's a lot going on with these ultimate type of questions. This isn't even getting into god yet, just mere existence, the universe and so on. The natural order of things has inherent eternal necessities outside of any god belief. Default past-eternal reasons is always a glaring issue when go down this path. It's still not that easy. Because the christian god is placed transcendent of our visible universe. Outside of proving or disproven, basically. They claim subjective communication. We can't very well disprove their subjective communication or knowledge claims. Or know that someone else's subjective experience is certainly false. I strongly think that it is, but it's beyond my knowing for certain. Same with ghosts or whatever. I think people are making it up. But I can't know that absolutely. There's a margin of error to be recognized. With gnostic position taking it requires a narrow focus and a neglect of acknowledging many of these surrounding issues. I'm holding that gnostic position taking is ill-advised due to a lot of experience with these kind of debates and discussions. Gnostic position taking has a lot of handicaps involved either way. It's about trying to prove things which are essentially beyond proving. That being the case, a lot of us prefer to admit that we don't know with certainty in order to keep to what we can honestly claim. And lack belief in god because it's nonsensical to us like anything else that's nonsensical - keep to an agnostic-atheist position. We're not up against any pressing burden of proof. Because we're not trying to prove things beyond proving. As it stands, this is what I see as the most intellectually honest and intelligent way of positioning oneself in the god debate. Disagreements?
  4. Paul advising women as per translated into modern language: "Shut up stupid, men are talking!" What an asshole.......
  5. Sorry about your brother, Wertbag. I hope you're doing alright. God and existence itself are the two examples that come to mind. But anything that is claimed to be infinite and eternal, no beginning or end, etc., etc, is an absolute question. The questions are forever out of reach. It comes down to chasing after an answer for something that can be projected out away from you forever. With answers forever out of reach. Like why does existence exist in the first place? You can't go beyond existence to find something external to existence that can give it a fixed meaning. It's very absolute in that way. It's silly, but the same is true of anything similar. Let's make something up and I'll name it, "Bugaloo." Bugaloo is infinite and eternal, no beginning or end. No one can disprove Bugaloo. Or know for certain whether Bugaloo exists. Bugaloo could be a metaphorical name for something that does exist but is beyond ever knowing or understanding. So even though it's stupid, and I just made it up, philosophically it can be treated as agnostic due to the technicalities of not being able to prove it wrong. Or claim to know absolutely that Bugaloo doesn't exist - as literal or metaphorical for something real . The only reason for the agnostic position is to be on the correct side of a debate, basically. It would fall incorrect if I asserted that Bugaloo can be disproven or if I know for certain that Bugaloo does not or can not exist. No matter how stupid Bugaloo is or the fact that I just made it up. It could refer to something real that I have to refer to by way of metaphor because there's no direct language in which describe Bugaloo as side from metaphorically. These are the levels to which liberal theologians can argue for god. I think it's pretty dumb and irrelevant when they do it. And I don't find any of it convincing. But if a I take agnostic atheist position against them rather than a gnostic atheist position against them that I have far less, if anything at all to lose in a debate with them. And I can keep them against the ropes as long as they insist on any gnostic theist position, holding them in the "burden of proof" end of the ring.
  6. That pesky "No True Sorcerer" fallacy again!!!
  7. I'll give a quick response, End. You have to try and understand that when we stopped theistic belief we began to understand social evolution differently. And morality through evolution became more obvious to us than it had been previously when we were theistic christians. I understand that it's hard to see it or make sense of it when you're still perceiving and experiencing through a believer perspective. Even if that believer perspective is unorthodox or liberal. But I appreciate the fact that you've raised the question and seem interested in looking at links and data that members will share with you. I'll watch with interest as you wade through the question further. Curious to see how it goes.
  8. I never bought the singularity theory any ways. That's one of the things that I first discussed with BAA. And back then there were problems with past eternal inflation. But the two of us looked into it deeper and found that the door isn't by any means closed on that, either. Or at least the door wasn't closed at the time. And it really doesn't matter whether it's inflation or something else, whatever the case it seems very clear that some sort of past eternal scenario is necessary in order for existence itself, and our experience of ourselves, and the universe to be happening right now. Our philosophy discussion about something = something outlines this very well. So the next question is how the No Boundary Proposal fits into the situation....
  9. Yes, it's built in. The people that prefer to block out the negative aspects are just ignoring what's there. The writers of scripture have cultural biases of time and place.
  10. This is a mega church situation, and it looks like the pastor is cash motivated. The Sheriff had two religious leaders back his move on arresting the con man. They quoted verses and spoke of why they oppose "testing" jesus at a time like this, basically. You hit the nail on the head. That's what it was like being raised in an end times denomination like SDAism. I have memories of being 3 or 4 years old looking up at posters with depictions of the various beasts of revelation. Everyone convinced that going into the 80's the end was right in front of us. Any time the pope spoke, or we had a new president someone had some crack pot theory that it had something to do with the 2nd coming. But you're right. They were leaning on a sense of security from thinking that they "know" what's going on. Very keen insight. And then as children, we found security in thinking that the elders knew what was going on. We depended on them having it correct. But that's where they lost me, when I began to identify just how incorrect they all were about so many different things. My parents along with everyone else. That was the big change. I could see how petty and desperate it was. Endgarcito, sorry. Don't let me spoil any beliefs you may have about revelation being true. Proceed if you will.
  11. It's not so cut and dry. Magick is closely tied to your own consciousness and sub conscious mind. I don't know if you broke into all the threads midnite and I have going about magick and it's relation to the persons consciousness and sub conscious mind in the spirituality section. Scientific study of magick and that sort of thing. So when you think that you know of a gods existence because of spells that worked, you don't actually know that. The stronger bet may be that it's been you yourself making it work. And has nothing to do with any gods or goddesses carrying out wishes or commands. But that's a talk for the spirituality section. Lot's of links, videos and citation there concerning these sorts of magick issues. And explanations that are lesser known. And this part goes towards some of the debate forum discussions as of lately. "Know" is a foggy word around here, as it turns out. By "know" you seem to mean having certain, firm, concrete and truth oriented knowledge about the existence or non-existence of god. As is the case with the context of most god related, gnostic or agnostic claims. Meaning specifically, knowing or not-knowing whether a god exists in terms of certainty. Not knowing in some other way, or figuratively or something else. So if we set aside any out of context meanings of the words know or knowledge, the yes, no one "knows" absolutely if there is or isn't a god. You're correct and these are common thoughts to have. And that's also a big point here. No one does. And atheism isn't so much about "knowing" that god doesn't exist. It's about lacking the positive belief, which, is common with both atheists and agnostics. Neither have absolute knowledge of whether or not a god exists. I questioned gods existence. I entertained the possibility that it may not be true. Even though I was raised believing what I was told about god absolutely existing. There were things that weren't adding up. My pastors couldn't hold a good strong argument when challenged. And finally the mythological nature of the bible started starring me in the face. I stopped believing it. It no longer made any sense to believe it. To be honest, it would be nice to think it's all true. And that despite anything I've done, I'm still loved and favored by a supernatural deity watching over me all the time. But I can't go backwards. I'd be pretending and fooling myself if I tried. I just don't believe and can't believe it any more. If some being suddenly appeared in front of my face and everyone else could see it too, I'd wonder what in the world this alien being is doing here on earth? You know why? Because anything that could appear in front of us and that we could look at as fixed object would be a "finite" object that it's possible to look at. An advanced life form of some type, not an infinite and eternal god, which, by definition would be beyond viewing directly. God as some absolute reality, gets caught up in the whole span of existence itself. With a presence all over, everywhere - omnipresent. The whole universe and beyond. What most people do is think of a finite representation of something that they claim to believe is beyond any finite representation. It's way of thinking about or imagining something that would have to be completely beyond thinking about or imagining. Because it's infinite and eternal. In the end, a god as something infinite and eternal places it as existence itself. Whole and totality oriented. Which then brings it close to home because we are existing beings. Whatever is infinite and eternal IS us. We a part of it and it is the totality that we actually are in reality, at the base of everything. I'm not afraid of that. Nor should you be either. It's our own inner essence and existence. Everything else is just politically motivated mythological stories. Which can't really do anything for anyone aside from take them down a rabbit hole or path leading to where I just took you now. If they look into it far enough. Once you grasp the infinite and eternal god as the totality, you're there. You've arrived. And then everything starts falling into place. These questions about the existence of god can take on a different perspective entirely. When you travel outside of the box christianity had you placed in. It's set up a series of contradictions about a god. None of which are resolved easily. And lead to confusion. Such as the question you're asking. But it's possible to look beyond all of that.
  12. We did personality tests a while back for fun. You're among many introverts! INTJ's and INFJ's and similar variations. Chin up!!!!!
  13. I'll add that good people will worship the good aspect of a god, while assholes will worship the bad aspect of the same god!!! Because the god is presented in ways that are both good and bad for people. Bringing it back around to the loving god treating women as inferior through his, "inspired" staff......
  14. Agreed on knowledge as the most likely effective cure. The rest is just a hypothetical about possible curve balls like this running wild. Things could change very fast. Much faster than anything expected given an odd set of circumstances. I guess that possibility just became more real and up front in my mind recently due to this pandemic. They arrested a mega church preacher the other day in the Tampa area. He was telling people things like no one who attends services will get the virus. The Sheriff came down hard on it. I'd say that the religious people do seem more religious right now due to the pandemic. But of course these churches are mostly made up of older folks who are inclined to grasp towards religion during hard times. With a con man at the helm trying to exploit the situation for monetary gain.
  15. This is just a hypothetical. What's your take here, End? Does it look like revelation being fulfilled in your opinion?
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