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Logic and Faith are Mutually Exclusive


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Logic and Faith are Mutually Exclusive

 

 

Again, I'm not trying to drive Christians, Hindus, Moslems or anyone else away from their faith. I'm trying to get them to see that their faith cannot be based on logic, nor can logic be used to reinforce faith. If you are religious, at least be honest, and admit that your beliefs hold no logical ground at all. No one's do. Being illogical and having faith does not make you a bad or ignorant person. After all, how irrational and illogical are human emotions, particularly love? Have you ever been in love with someone who didn't love you back, and, yet, you continue to torture yourself with your feelings for that individual? How logical is that? We all do illogical things, like believe in religion and fall in love. It's simply a matter of which of these illogical things we believe are worth throwing logic out the window for. I, personally, don't believe that faith is worth tossing logic for, but I also believe that love is. That said, let us examine some of the most oft-repeated (at least, in my school) "logical" arguments for the existence of God.

 

Why don't you have faith in God? Every morning, when you wake up, you have faith in that you're not going to be killed that day. Everyone has faith in certain things, why can't they have faith in God?

 

This was one that was repeated many times in Catholic high school. Unfortunately, repetition doesn't make it valid or logical. It assumes that, since you have faith in one thing, you must have faith in everything. There two faiths, however, are completely different.

 

If I didn't have faith in my living through the day unscathed, I'd be a horribly-depressed, pessimistic and unadventurous person. I'd isolate myself in a room and avoid all contact with anyone else, because they might kill me. In other words, I couldn't live my life without this faith.

 

However, faith in God is completely optional. I don't have faith in God. Millions of others in America don't. We all live ordinary, normal lives. We get up in the morning, confident that a semi won't ram into us in the middle of the street. See the difference? If faith in God was necessary to live a normal life, all the atheists of the world would be severely-abnormal people.

 

All this being said, I live in a fairly low-crime neighborhood. I'm a safe driver, and I have quick reflexes. Logically, the chances of me dying in a given day are slim enough to merit me actually going out and facing that day.

 

In Summa Theologica, St. Thomas Aquinas makes a logical case for the existence of God. Everything has to come from somewhere. You can't trace events back forever. There must have been a beginning, or an "uncaused cause" which started everything. That is God.

 

This argument kept me clinging to theism all throughout my senior year of high school. It is, indeed, a very powerful argument to overcome. It seems very logical, but it's so incredibly easy to refute it when one looks at the actual path that the proponents of this argument take to get to God as their "uncaused cause."

 

Put simply, they are defying Occam's Razor. They are introducing an unnecessary element into an explanation. The conclusion "God" is not an option in logic, because "God" is something so overly complex that we cannot possibly understand its working mechanisms, or prove its existence. In other words, "God" is the most complex and unnecessary term one can introduce into an explanation. Now, to the actual refutation.

 

Let's say we take a look at a very short cause-and-effect path. Tree comes from seed. Seed comes from other tree. Other tree comes from the Earth. The Earth comes from the Universe. The Universe comes from God. Therefore, God is the initiator. What is wrong with this conclusion? It skips the Universe as a candidate for an initiator. Why can't the Universe be the uncaused cause? Why can't it simply be eternal? This is a much more logical conclusion than "God," because we know the Universe exists! Therefore, the Universe is the uncaused cause. It simply is, and has always been.

 

An intelligent thing means an intelligent designer. Humans just couldn't have popped into existence by chance. The probabilities are just astronomical. The only explanation is God.

 

This argument can be turned around to say that someone must have designed God, too. You can't just magically stop applying logic to a situation when it suits you. If you want to apply the "designer logic" to prove the existence of God, someone must have designed God, using the same reasoning. This also grossly misrepresents the atheist stance. Theists often like to pretend that anyone who doesn't believe in God believes that the Universe and all life came into being by "random chance." This is simply false. I don't believe the Universe ever "came into being." It simply always was and always will be. This is a far more logical conclusion than God will ever be. We have no reason to assume that the Universe had a "creation point." There is no reason to assume that there was a time when the Universe didn't exist. We have no evidence of such a period. Thus, to believe to is wholeheartedly illogical, and it violates all physical conservation laws, especially Conservation of Energy. If energy can be neither created nor destroyed, then the Universe couldn't have "come into being" from nothing via any process.

 

As an aside, I could use that logic to prove that Man is God. If he wants to say that God designed Man, but no one designed God, I can just as easily say that no one designed Man, and it makes more sense. We know that we exist, after all. We don't know that God exists.

 

But you can't explain the human brain without a creator. You can't explain the beauty of the human intellect. Without a creator, life has no purpose. It's depressing, and anyone who believes it leads a sad and empty life.

 

This is one of the most insulting and arrogant "arguments" for the existence of God. People actually do argue this, and they actually tell people like me that we lead "empty" lives. This only goes to show what an empty life those people lead. If you truly believe that no one can find a purpose for life without faith in a God or creator in their head, you lead a truly sad life, because you can't give yourself a purpose. Moreover, if you truly believe that there is logic to your faith, you're just being hypocritical an delusional. Zen-Buddhists have the right idea. They believe that, in order to find enlightenment, you must think illogically. They don't pretend that their unsupported belief in Nirvana makes logical sense. They accept is for what it is, illogical, and practice their faith along those lines.

 

But, so many of the Bible's predictions have come true! It's predicted the downfall of every country around the Israel area! Those words must have been inspired!

 

Frankly, predicting the downfall of nations doesn't impress me. No nation or state in the history of the planet has ever lasted forever. All nations will eventually crumble. This is simple historical fact. Furthermore, none of the verses in the Bible making these "predictions" give any specifics. They don't give a time or a manner. They simply say that the nation will fall.

 

Furthermore, even if there are predictions that the Bible makes that are somewhat accurate and specific, how does this prove the existence of God? How do we know that the person in question wasn't lying about the manner with which he arrived at his prophecy? Nostrdamus' prophecies are certainly interesting to study due to their accuracy, but they certainly don't lend credence to the theory that there is a God. They are very intriguing, but there's no way to prove the mechanism through which he got his prophecies. If a psychic reveals my future to me, and it comes true, am I to immediately "accept the light of Christ?" I should hope not.

 

The only reason anyone is an atheist is because they don't want to accept the supreme authority of God and follow his laws. They want to be sexually promiscuous and walk away guilt-free, and they can't do that without denying the love of Christ in favor of the sin of physical pleasure.

 

Also an insulting and bigotous claim. It really has nothing to do with proving God's existence, but I thought I'd put it in here because people actually say stuff like this when an atheist backs them into a corner with his Satanic logic. If you actually think that the only reason every atheist believes what he or she does, then you are a Christian fundamentalist who probably believes that the Universe is a paltry 6,000 years old and that we are all the products of a vengeful and cruel God who made everything is six days, and that your unsupported religious views are better than everyone else's. You need to castrate yourself and remove yourself from the gene pool right away.

 

Sexual morality is covered in my section on sex and homosexuality.

 

Logic simply doesn't support religion. That's all there is to it. Logic and faith are totally incompatible. This doesn't mean that they can't live together. It simply means that one can't enter into the other. Logic can't enter into your faith, because, if it does, it will destroy it. Faith can't enter into logic, because faith is illogical. Again, as individuals, we choose what we will leave to logic and what we will leave to faith.

 

On a related note, this is also why science and religion are not compatible. Science is based on observation and logical deduction. Religion is based on blindly believing. The two are opposite philosophies. Rather than looking at them as two opposing forces, struggling for dominance, it is more optimistic and more helpful to our sanity to look at them more as Yin and Yang. They are two opposing forces, but they are in equilibrium, with neither dominating the other. As individuals, we must look for a personal balance between the two, that is comfortable for ourselves. If one allows faith to rule his life, then he is bound for disappointment and a life of blindly following whatever may come his way. If one allows logic to rule his life, he will miss out on all the wonderful experiences that human emotions have to offer, i.e. joy from being loved or loving someone else. Of course, human emotion carries with it a price, the bad side. We've all been there, but I suspect that most humans wouldn't disown the negative side of emotion if it meant, too, disowning the positive side.

 

 

More to come

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Welcome aboard.

 

This whole logic v. faith thing is why I don't debate religion much anymore.

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Welcome aboard.

 

Try telling a Christian that his faith is irrational (illogical), and you'll get some interesting responses. I've tried arguing this point before, and usually end up offending them with it. They believe that their faith is rational, and I've only succeeded once in convincing a Christian that no, it is not.

 

I also tend to avoid religious debate for this very reason.

 

Anyway, thanks for your post; it is very true, and welcome to the forums.

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I DO personally see a problem with automatically assuming the world opperates on in entirely mechanistic newtonian way. I think it's a shallow/surface analysis of reality.

 

Reality I think is way too bizarre to put in that kindof box. It doesn't mean the supernatural is real. the term supernatural is meaningless. Whatever exists just exists and it's not "outside of what exists" that's illogical.

 

I agree to an extent. This is what science is for, to find answers to the bizarre and show that those things really aren't so bizarre after all. I've had an experience I can't explain. Does that mean I think it's supernatural in origin? No.

 

My PoV is that everything is natural, but we haven't found the answers to everything yet, and we might never find all of the answers. That's part of the great mystery of life.

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However, the term "atheist" has added baggage in many cases...I've met very few atheists with spiritual beliefs.

 

I equate my vitality with my spirit. My mind and my feelings are also a part of my spirit. I don't think that to be spiritual you have to believe in the supernatural, if that's what you were getting at.

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OK Magic is defined as "the science and art of causing change to occur in comformity with will" Aleister Crowley

 

Is this logical? NO. Is there some scientific basis for it? Yes, actually there is.

 

Quantum Physics. It is called the Einstien-Podolsky-Roisedan Paadox. Things that are physically disconnected work in unison. Ex. If you put separate living cells from a heart into a petri dish they beat in the same pattern. Here is better explanation:

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Einstein-Po...en_paradox

 

 

 

Quote:

"Albert Einstein, .. produced a series of objections to the theory, the most famous of which has become known as the EPR paradox. John Bell showed that the EPR paradox led to experimentally testable differences between quantum mechanics and local hidden variable theories. Experiments have been taken as confirming that quantum mechanics is correct and the real world cannot be described in terms of such hidden variables. "Loopholes" in the experiments, however, mean the question is still not quite settled."

 

 

There is just as much evidence to prove the paradox as there are to disapprove it. Kind of like the theory of evolution. It all comes down to what you decide to believe. If given a choice of believing something that has some scientific basis or believing some book, I will always choose the science.

 

 

There are simply some things that can't be explained away by science, yet.

 

http://www.ahisee.com/content/epressay.html

 

Quote:

 

a scientific theory must be:

1. Guided by natural law

2. Explanatory by reference to natural law

3. Testable against the empirical world

4. Tentative; that is, its conclusions are not necessarily final

5. Falsifiable

 

The influence of Popper is very clear here; however, is there anything here that scientists or philosophers would find problematic? Take item 4. Clearly this distinguishes between a religious theory - which is inescapably absolute and thus final - and a scientific theory, which is neither. Now, a complete theory of physics would necessarily be final. But by this criterion, any complete theory is not tentative. It would cease to be a theory and become absolute, and thus enters the realm of religion, in the same moment leaving the realm of science. I therefore argue that necessarily science and its theories must remain incomplete in order that they remain science.

 

Conclusion

Let's make this brief. In my view the EPR paradox does not show that the Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum theory is incomplete. Quantum theory is nonetheless incomplete, and indeed all theories in science must necessarily be incomplete. If this was not the case, we would not have two entities - science and religion - but one, science-religion

 

There are many truths out there and not all will coincide with the others. I do not believe that things are black and white only, but shades of grey where discussions and differing opinion come in. Besides, the forum would be boring if we all only echo each other's thoughts. Where is the fun in that?

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  . . .  Why don't you have faith in God? Every morning, when you wake up, you have faith in that you're not going to be killed that day. Everyone has faith in certain things, why can't they have faith in God?

 

This was one that was repeated many times in Catholic high school. Unfortunately, repetition doesn't make it valid or logical. It assumes that, since you have faith in one thing, you must have faith in everything. There two faiths, however, are completely different.

 

If I didn't have faith in my living through the day unscathed, I'd be a horribly-depressed, pessimistic and unadventurous person. I'd isolate myself in a room and avoid all contact with anyone else, because they might kill me. In other words, I couldn't live my life without this faith.

 

I would argue this a bit differently. I would say I don't have faith that I will live through the day unscathed. I think that I will probably live through the day unscathed because I have the evidence of having lived through previous days unscathed, and have evidence to know what my day will mostly likely be like. The level of certainty that I have regarding whether I will or will not live through the day is not out of line with the available evidence. And guess what: one day, I know (with a very great certainty) that I will not make it through the day unscathed.

 

Faith in God rests on a complete vacuum, a total lack of evidence. The degree of certainty with which some people hold their belief in God is totally out of line with the available evidence. That is faith, belief to a degree of certainty exceeding that warranted by the available evidence.

 

In response to a demand for evidence, you will often hear Christians say something like, "well, that's why you need faith." or some such. That's how I know what faith is.

 

This accusation that "you use faith too," and the pointing out of so-called examples like "you have faith that that chair you're sitting in will support you," or that "gravity will continue to work," or that "you'll live through the night," etc. are just wriggling equivocation. The fact that Christians feel the need to say, "you use faith too" to justify their own faith in their own minds really only betrays that they know damn well that faith is intellectually bankrupt, and worthless. (Actually it's worse than worthless, it's actively harmful, if you ask me.)

 

The notion that faith, that unshakable, excessive certainty, is a virtue is one of the biggest tricks that mankind has foisted, in the form of religion or otherwise, on his fellow man. Faith is no virtue, it is ignorance disguised. Fostering and promoting faith is a as bad as fostering and promoting illiteracy, as bad as actively preventing people from learning to read.

 

That's how I'd argue it.

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But I don't.  I'm agnostic on the matter of reincarnation...but if reincarnation is true  it isn't "supernatural" it's "natural"

 

Because anything that actually exists is natural.

 

I'll grant you that. Yes, anything that exists is natural. :) Now if reincarnation were true, how would we know it?

 

There are simply some things that can't be explained away by science, yet.

Yes, this is true. It's a good thing, too, because that means job security for me. :)

Seriously though, there are many things that science can't explain yet; the scientific endeavor is the search for truth about how our universe works, and may never it may never be complete. From my perspective, it appears that there will always be more to learn, and that's what's fun about it. :)

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and I bow down before you. COming from you that is a compliment indeed. But to be honest, the first paragraph came from the link, only the second one is mine.

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:Doh: I just realized, FLUFFY? I have been accused of many things, but never fluffy. :lmao:
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Theoretically more and more people could start remembering previous lives and tests might possibly be done.

 

I do remember having an unusual dream as a small child. It was about a lady in a car wreck. It recurred for a little while and was very nightmarish. Whether or not it had actually happened, or I had seen it in a movie or on TV and forgot, I don't know.

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All people are irrational sometimes.

 

Xers just choose faith in addition to what ever other foibles they may or may not already have. Hehe.

 

Faith as described in the bible is totaly retarded. It's roob bait. I'm glad I'm not a sucker anymore.

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And when we get right down to it...ALL experiences are personal experiences. If anytime something odd happens the excuse is: "Oh that person didn't really see or hear what he thought he saw or heard" then how the hell do we trust ANYONE's observational skills?

 

Personal testimony of extraordinary events has little credibility in my eyes. Not that I'm saying said person is delusional, but I need more than someone's word. The bottom line for me is that I trust what can be measured and reproduced in the laboratory.

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And when we get right down to it...ALL experiences are personal experiences. If anytime something odd happens the excuse is: "Oh that person didn't really see or hear what he thought he saw or heard" then how the hell do we trust ANYONE's observational skills?

 

Personal testimony of extraordinary events has little credibility in my eyes. Not that I'm saying said person is delusional, but I need more than someone's word. The bottom line for me is that I trust what can be measured and reproduced in the laboratory.

Personal testimony of seeing the virgin mary or of recieving miraculous healing, casting out devils...etc are given us by people who suspend all reason momentarily in favor of upholding only what they want to believe. They decieve themselves or are decieved by others %100 of the time. They don't have to be crazy just desperate. This is the only rational explanation based on any evidences we have on alleged miracles.

 

However I must admit that the milk miracle really pisses me off. I'm still waiting for it to be properly debunked. :vent:

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of course.  I don't automatically trust other people's wild stories either.  It's hearsay.  But when you yourself are the experiencer of the weird shit, it's not hearsay anymore.

 

Yes, that's true. I have had a couple of weird things happen to me for which I can't naturally account for.

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That and the fact that no two people will experience the same thing, even though they were both there.

 

In one of the Ex-witch forums I used to visit there was one person who claims that Jesus himself showed up in a ritual and told her to get out of the craft. Her husband who was there as well debunked her and told a different tale?

 

Who would you believe?

 

I believe that they both may have had their different experiences.

 

(honestly, because the husband is a good friend of mine and has been there when I needed a friend, I believe him) but again that too is perceptional and biased.

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Personal testimony of extraordinary events has little credibility in my eyes. Not that I'm saying said person is delusional, but I need more than someone's word. The bottom line for me is that I trust what can be measured and reproduced in the laboratory.

 

Agree entirely.

 

Who would you believe?

 

The ex-husband, since Jesus does not exist. The woman may have had a vision or dream, but it doesn't prove anything.

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The ex-husband, since Jesus does not exist. The woman may have had a vision or dream, but it doesn't prove anything.

 

But my point was that does not negate the fact that she very well may have had the experience. I am always amazed at how our minds work. I believe that it is possible that she was questioning herself and was ready to go back to xanity, so that is why she projected that into her "experience".

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