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Christians Have A Point


Guest Babylonian Dream
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Guest Babylonian Dream

Every now and then, especially when debating with them, you'll hear a christian say "atheists have faith". Then to prove this, they'll dive into philosophical questions on how you know reality (if they're smart enough to do so). I'll say they do have one good point, that you do need to have "faith", a groundless belief, to believe that you know that we're living and experiencing through our senses an actual, objective universe, in which we subjectively experience; And that it actually exists outside our minds.

 

However, it doesn't logically follow, that that assumption we all make (in reality, we kinda have to), opens up an excuse to make an assumption that God exists based on your percieved experiences. One could argue that you could use that for YOU and YOU ALONE to believe, but then again, there are delusional people out there with lots of fbeliefs. Charles Manson believed he was Jesus incarnate, as did Jim Jones and David Koresh. And in that case, I don't care what you personally believe.

 

There are only 2 basic assumptions that I make:

 

1) Logic is valid, despite the fact that I can't prove it (without circular reasoning/logic).

 

Indeed, we all have to make this assumption! For in order to prove me or anyone wrong, you'd need to use logic! There's no escaping it!

 

2) That there is an objective reality in which we experience subjectively.

 

While I think that our experience of this objective reality isn't truly objective, its limited by what we've evolved to be able to understand with time with our evolution.

 

Indeed, you too have no choice but to draw this assumption! It too could be wrong, but neither of us can believe it isn't! That's why we hold those assumptions! The same reason you do!

 

Assumptions are made when we've got no other option but to make them. Without an Objective reality, and without Logic, we can't really get very far. The difference between this and the belief in a god you experience subjectively, is that reality and logic are inescapeable (granted your mind isn't hindered by medical conditions). Belief in God on the other hand, quite frankly, is. So its not a valid assumption.

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An assumption is not based solely on faith, or I don't understand your post. An assumption has merit when backed with data, rational thought, and common sense. Logic dictates, for lack of a better word, that it is logical there is no god because there is no proof in a supreme Woo. Logical reasoning is not cirucular but depends on physical evidence to make logic valid otherwise it is an act of faith. An assumption of a supreme all powerful Woo is based solely on faith because it has no proof or data to back up its assertions of an existing god. What exactly is the point Christians make? I don't think I really understand your post?

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I'll say they do have one good point, that you do need to have "faith", a groundless belief, to believe that you know that we're living and experiencing through our senses an actual, objective universe, in which we subjectively experience; And that it actually exists outside our minds.

 

I suppose we could be characters in a unicorn's dream, or maybe we are god entertaining himself by playing human, or perhaps we're an alien breeding experiment. We can't disprove any of those (or other scenarios) but why should we entertain those ideas? Accepting that which we perceive as real is the only view we can work with. If there is an undetectable realm of "something else," it doesn't seem to affect our daily reality and I don't see why it would be relevant.

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You look around and see you are a person living on earth. Does it take faith to believe what your eyes tell you? I think not. Atheists are following the path that is best supported by the evidence. Faith is ignoring evidence. These are very different things.

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And we have presuppistionalism damned in one post, thank you BD.

You're welcome! :)

 

An assumption is not based solely on faith, or I don't understand your post. An assumption has merit when backed with data, rational thought, and common sense. Logic dictates, for lack of a better word, that it is logical there is no god because there is no proof in a supreme Woo. Logical reasoning is not cirucular but depends on physical evidence to make logic valid otherwise it is an act of faith. An assumption of a supreme all powerful Woo is based solely on faith because it has no proof or data to back up its assertions of an existing god. What exactly is the point Christians make? I don't think I really understand your post?

My point was more geared at the "philosophical" arguements that we can't prove logic nor that there is a reality outside our head.

 

By circular reasoning, I mean that you'll need to assume logic to be true prior to proving logic to be true. As you'd need to use logic to prove logic. It's a pointless "philosophical" masturbation I've encountered in an arguement with a fundy friend of my brothers. My best interpretation and explanation is that he wanted me to try to prove logic to be true without using logic.Somehow, my lack of ability to do so, was proof the Bible could be true because it said so.

 

He was right in assuming that we trust logic to be true on "faith", though perhaps there is a better word (I just used the one he did). The only thing we have to prove logic is more logic, which is why I said it was "groundless".

 

Data and reasoning, looking at evidence, drawing conclusions on that evidence, all requires logic. His point is that we believe/trust in logic without any other reason other than by using logic to prove itself.

 

I'll say they do have one good point, that you do need to have "faith", a groundless belief, to believe that you know that we're living and experiencing through our senses an actual, objective universe, in which we subjectively experience; And that it actually exists outside our minds.

 

I suppose we could be characters in a unicorn's dream, or maybe we are god entertaining himself by playing human, or perhaps we're an alien breeding experiment. We can't disprove any of those (or other scenarios) but why should we entertain those ideas? Accepting that which we perceive as real is the only view we can work with. If there is an undetectable realm of "something else," it doesn't seem to affect our daily reality and I don't see why it would be relevant.

Basically what I told him, but I used the "brain in a jar hooked to a supercomputer" scenario.

 

You look around and see you are a person living on earth. Does it take faith to believe what your eyes tell you? I think not. Atheists are following the path that is best supported by the evidence. Faith is ignoring evidence. These are very different things.

They tend to superimpose many definitions of faith. We have faith in/trust our senses that they render reality accurately for us. They use these nonarguements to bolster their credibility, but it doesn't do so.

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I see it as God is either: (a) a product of our consciousness or (B) God can only be perceived by our consciousness.

 

Some of the nicest Christian types I know cannot and will not argue about God's existence. They know, understand and are comfortable with the fact that God's existence (or not) can't be proven. They have had an experience that makes them believe that for them - God exists.

 

I don't know what to do with it either.

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I see it as God is either: (a) a product of our consciousness or (cool.png God can only be perceived by our consciousness.

 

Some of the nicest Christian types I know cannot and will not argue about God's existence. They know, understand and are comfortable with the fact that God's existence (or not) can't be proven. They have had an experience that makes them believe that for them - God exists.

 

I don't know what to do with it either.

See, I wanted to debate christians that are argueing that the assumption that their subjective experience proving god is real is at par with my assumption that reality exists and that the use of logic and reason helps us to understand that reality. At least the ones that want to convert others. Those whose subjective experiences were so great, that they must be superior at knowing the objective universe! Not the humble halftheists, that believe that they can't prove he exists and that he might not, but that they believe because of their experiences. I do have to commend them for being consistent though.

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Referring to the OP, yes technically we can never be absolutely sure of what our senses tell us about the universe and of what our brains do with that information. Of course technically we could really live in one huge delusion, of in the proverbial matrix, or whathaveyou.

 

Just because something is possible doesn't mean we have to deal with it though. Just because both atheism and morontheism can't be proven with 100 % certainty does not mean they are equally probable and equally well-suited to explain and deal with the world all around us.

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I have heard it said, you need christianity to even know science or anything at all.

 

But you can't at least to me, not escape the next logical step from that.

 

You can't know anything for certain about christianity if that is the case.

 

I mean, do you really know, that Noah built the ark?

 

It also seems to run into ockhams razor as well.

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This is not faith. You're making the mistake of convoluting two definitions; one the church's and second, the colloquial use of the word.

 

We don't have faith that logic is valid, it's testable and repeatable, lending confidence that it is trustworthy. The same is true with objective reality.

 

Xians, OTH, believe in something without any evidence forthcoming and despite a myriad of contradictions, simply because. Equating these two types of faith is the logical fallacy of equivocation.

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This is not faith. You're making the mistake of convoluting two definitions; one the church's and second, the colloquial use of the word.

 

We don't have faith that logic is valid, it's testable and repeatable, lending confidence that it is trustworthy. The same is true with objective reality.

 

Xians, OTH, believe in something without any evidence forthcoming and despite a myriad of contradictions, simply because. Equating these two types of faith is the logical fallacy of equivocation.

Ever heard of presuppositionalist apologetics? I suspect, though I might be wrong that BD is addressing people who think in that vain.
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This is not faith. You're making the mistake of convoluting two definitions; one the church's and second, the colloquial use of the word.

 

We don't have faith that logic is valid, it's testable and repeatable, lending confidence that it is trustworthy. The same is true with objective reality.

 

Xians, OTH, believe in something without any evidence forthcoming and despite a myriad of contradictions, simply because. Equating these two types of faith is the logical fallacy of equivocation.

Ever heard of presuppositionalist apologetics? I suspect, though I might be wrong that BD is addressing people who think in that vain.

 

Yes, but I disagree that those who make this argument have a valid point.

 

We may not have a perfect understanding of reality, but that doesn't leave us on the same playing field as those who just make up their own facts.

 

I don't know with 100% certainty that the sun will rise tomorrow, but pretty damn close to it and there are countless independently verifiable reasons why; virtually none of them have anything to do with faith and certainly not faith of the religious variety.

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This is not faith. You're making the mistake of convoluting two definitions; one the church's and second, the colloquial use of the word.

 

We don't have faith that logic is valid, it's testable and repeatable, lending confidence that it is trustworthy. The same is true with objective reality.

 

Xians, OTH, believe in something without any evidence forthcoming and despite a myriad of contradictions, simply because. Equating these two types of faith is the logical fallacy of equivocation.

Ever heard of presuppositionalist apologetics? I suspect, though I might be wrong that BD is addressing people who think in that vain.

 

Yes, but I disagree that those who make this argument have a valid point.

 

We may not have a perfect understanding of reality, but that doesn't leave us on the same playing field as those who just make up their own facts.

 

I don't know with 100% certainty that the sun will rise tomorrow, but pretty damn close to it and there are countless independently verifiable reasons why; virtually none of them have anything to do with faith and certainly not faith of the religious variety.

I agree with you but, the kind of verbage BD uses, adopts the same sort of language they use. But if your going to critic presuppostionalism, that seems to be a decent way to go about it, cause they would get it.

 

The verbage sucks in general, but it makes the point in a way that they can understand it.

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Guest Babylonian Dream

Yes, but I disagree that those who make this argument have a valid point.

They have a point, not a valid one though. We could still be a brain in a supercomputer sumulating a universe, in which case the world outside the computer would be the objective universe. I wanted to get them to debate, this. Because I don't think their point is valid, but I wanted to test my response against them

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I agree with you but, the kind of verbage BD uses, adopts the same sort of language they use. But if your going to critic presuppostionalism, that seems to be a decent way to go about it, cause they would get it.

 

The verbage sucks in general, but it makes the point in a way that they can understand it.

I hate using it, but that's exactly why I used it. I tried also having something coherent to say when using it, which was also hard. The only reason I understand their arguement at all, is because at one point, I used to have their arguements as my own.

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They have a point, not a valid one though

 

:) This makes no sense unless by point you mean on top of their heads.

 

We could still be a brain in a supercomputer sumulating a universe, in which case the world outside the computer would be the objective universe.

 

I think, therefore I am.

-Rene Descartes

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Guest Babylonian Dream

They have a point, not a valid one though

 

smile.png This makes no sense unless by point you mean on top of their heads.

I'm trying to show them I'm openminded. You need to say all sorts of things, to show them that simple fact. Because simply listening to their nonsense is never enough. Nor is the fact that you used to believe, and realized it didn't make sense, of any help to them. I try to play devils advocate and understand my opponents position, and also give them a chance to build their arguement against me and in their favor. It gives them a chance to gain the confidence to debate better. Or at least I hope.

 

Also, I try to avoid them getting defensive, which is almost always the result of debates. Maybe subconsciously they see its nonsense too? I remember not liking to talk about Christianity to my therapist, because I was afraid they'd think I was delusional. I was raised believing the earth was 6,000 years old, but at a subconscious level, I'm thinking part of me just thought the whole story was kind of silly.

 

We could still be a brain in a supercomputer sumulating a universe, in which case the world outside the computer would be the objective universe.

 

I think, therefore I am.

-Rene Descartes

Sums it up good. There really is no way to address such a philosophical question otherwise.

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And we have presuppistionalism damned in one post, thank you BD.

You're welcome! smile.png

 

An assumption is not based solely on faith, or I don't understand your post. An assumption has merit when backed with data, rational thought, and common sense. Logic dictates, for lack of a better word, that it is logical there is no god because there is no proof in a supreme Woo. Logical reasoning is not cirucular but depends on physical evidence to make logic valid otherwise it is an act of faith. An assumption of a supreme all powerful Woo is based solely on faith because it has no proof or data to back up its assertions of an existing god. What exactly is the point Christians make? I don't think I really understand your post?

My point was more geared at the "philosophical" arguements that we can't prove logic nor that there is a reality outside our head.

 

By circular reasoning, I mean that you'll need to assume logic to be true prior to proving logic to be true. As you'd need to use logic to prove logic. It's a pointless "philosophical" masturbation I've encountered in an arguement with a fundy friend of my brothers. My best interpretation and explanation is that he wanted me to try to prove logic to be true without using logic.Somehow, my lack of ability to do so, was proof the Bible could be true because it said so.

 

He was right in assuming that we trust logic to be true on "faith", though perhaps there is a better word (I just used the one he did). The only thing we have to prove logic is more logic, which is why I said it was "groundless".

 

Data and reasoning, looking at evidence, drawing conclusions on that evidence, all requires logic. His point is that we believe/trust in logic without any other reason other than by using logic to prove itself.

 

I'll say they do have one good point, that you do need to have "faith", a groundless belief, to believe that you know that we're living and experiencing through our senses an actual, objective universe, in which we subjectively experience; And that it actually exists outside our minds.

 

I suppose we could be characters in a unicorn's dream, or maybe we are god entertaining himself by playing human, or perhaps we're an alien breeding experiment. We can't disprove any of those (or other scenarios) but why should we entertain those ideas? Accepting that which we perceive as real is the only view we can work with. If there is an undetectable realm of "something else," it doesn't seem to affect our daily reality and I don't see why it would be relevant.

Basically what I told him, but I used the "brain in a jar hooked to a supercomputer" scenario.

 

You look around and see you are a person living on earth. Does it take faith to believe what your eyes tell you? I think not. Atheists are following the path that is best supported by the evidence. Faith is ignoring evidence. These are very different things.

They tend to superimpose many definitions of faith. We have faith in/trust our senses that they render reality accurately for us. They use these nonarguements to bolster their credibility, but it doesn't do so.

 

I think St. Augustine said that the unbeliever already uses faith, as when he sits down on a chair believing that the chair won't suddenly cease to exist. These kind of TAG arguments (Transcendental Argument for God), beloved of Calvinists, in my opinion equivocate big time on "faith."

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A human can't live a productive life if they don't take things on faith. If we ignore the fact that we can't really trust our senses, so in essence we trust our sense on faith, we still believe certain things on faith to get through our daily lives. However, we based these assumptions on logic and observed experience. Most of us don't know how a lot of machines in our lives work, but we know a logical explanation told to us by the people who do. We don't need the details... we see the results.

 

Religion on the other hand is faith based on something that produces no tangible results. It's the opposite of logic, as it even causes one to ignore counter-evidence in favor of the belief that has no result to confirm its veracity.

 

I've heard belief in science called a religion. It's true that believing in certain scientific theories that can't be tested at this time may be seen as having faith in the unknown. However, I don't know any scientists that would stick to those theories if a better one came along, or the theory was disproven. Relgions will happily stick to their theory, because it's "magic".

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Scientific theories are based on mountains of observable facts. In a nut shell, a scientific theory has predictive power. Failure to predict would disprove some or potentially, though not probably, all of the theory. Religion, by comparison is not a theory in the scientific sense of the word, but is instead pure conjecture. No one need have faith in a theory. You can trust in its predictive capability and the fact that it is rigorously tested, but it's not just an educated guess.

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A human can't live a productive life if they don't take things on faith. If we ignore the fact that we can't really trust our senses, so in essence we trust our sense on faith, we still believe certain things on faith to get through our daily lives. However, we based these assumptions on logic and observed experience. Most of us don't know how a lot of machines in our lives work, but we know a logical explanation told to us by the people who do. We don't need the details... we see the results.

 

Religion on the other hand is faith based on something that produces no tangible results. It's the opposite of logic, as it even causes one to ignore counter-evidence in favor of the belief that has no result to confirm its veracity.

 

I've heard belief in science called a religion. It's true that believing in certain scientific theories that can't be tested at this time may be seen as having faith in the unknown. However, I don't know any scientists that would stick to those theories if a better one came along, or the theory was disproven. Relgions will happily stick to their theory, because it's "magic".

 

Don't really agree with your post Silent Knight. It depends on your definitions.

 

faith = belief in something without any evidence or for no good reason.

trust = belief in something with some evidence although it may be insufficient to prove beyond doubt

hypothesis = scientific idea, worthy of exploration

theory = scientific explanation that fits the facts/ evidence e.g. theory of evolution, theory of gravity etc.

 

I don't have faith in anything. Faith is gullibility.

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Guest Babylonian Dream

Don't really agree with your post Silent Knight. It depends on your definitions.

 

faith = belief in something without any evidence or for no good reason.

Originally, no. And currently, it depends. Faith actually does mean trust. Its also a term used by many a theist to mean trust.

 

Man.... I've practically all but given them a hand in their arguement, and still not one christian has responded to this thread? Why?

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In this context the difference between the theist and atheist is that one bases their beliefs on the evidence and the other ignores evidence in favor of belief. So yes both have beliefs because that is part of being human. Some theists like to pretend that makes atheism into a religion. They compare trusting evidence with trusting the Bible or trusting God.

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Did any of you see "Through the Wormhole" on Science Channel last night? It showed how our brains create order out of chaos and at times see things that aren't really there. A very good show on this point. The name of the show was 'Did we invent God?'

 

It goes directly to many of the questions posed here and the scientific process of our brain to create a god to fill in the missing parts or when we don't know the answers.

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