Why atheists seem to win the argument with theists.
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@In faith: READ THE FUCKING POST!
Please demonstrate faith in god to the same degree I can demonstrate my faith in eating a banana will not kill me. I have hundreds of years of facts and evidence supporting my claim that eating a banana will not kill me. I can eat a banana in front of you and live. A secular definition of the word faith is not the same as a theist definition of the word faith. You want to assert that you have "faith" in your god. Prove that the confidence level is equivalent to that of me eating a banana. Please demonstrate the reason for confidence in god. If you are going to use faith in the secular vernacular and apply that meaning to your god. Support your claim.
It requires NO FAITH WHAT SO EVER TO EAT A FRIGGING BANANA. Asserting it does is an "Equivocation Fallacy" in the way "FAITH" is being used.
The word faith, at least on here, comes with too much religious baggage IMHO. I have witnessed too many theists try to dishonestly misrepresent it when atheists use its primary definition as complete confidence or trust in something like science for example, to pretend this somehow indicates parity between the blind unevidenced faith religions have long championed, with the justifiable confidence derived from the manifest, and measurable success of things like the scientific method.
You're not grammatically incorrect, it's just that atheists have too often seen theists use the word faith to misrepresent an atheist's position on here.
FAITH — Falsehoods Assumptions Innuendos and Treasonous Hypocrisy.
HOPE — Having Optimistic Patience Everyday.
@arakish: Thanks. Jo and InSpirit want to keep committing the same dipshit equivocation error though it has been pointed out to him a dozen times. NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT CONFIDENCE LEVELS! Doing so commits an equivocation fallacy.
EDITED TO SURRENDER: *White flag waving through the dead and dying on the battle field. Weirelly eeking out of the fox hole.* Shouting "Surrender! Surrender!" *Sly grin and a slight chortle of mischief as the words spring forth and Cog's Shovel is activated.* "For fuck sake, you guys win the debate. I give up. There couldn't possibly be an Equivocation Fallacy. The word "Faith" can be used in too many different ways for that to happen, " *snicker*
*The sound of cheering can be heard from far off over the hill as the theists celebrate. The atheist turns slowly and walks away shaking his head in disbelief. * "At least I will not have to kill any more of these blind ignorant mushroom people. A person can only shoot fish in a barrel for so long and then it just gets boring."
*A slap on the back from Old Man and the others gather around. Someone laughs out loud and says, in their most serious and pedantic voice* .. " Too many different meanings for an Equivication Fallacy!" (Was that Tin Man?) We all roar with laughter and walk away. There will be no more theists slaughtered on the battlefield today. I think we will all head over to the pizza shop and get some eggnog.
Don't take me personal. I am not here to score points. I have just checked Equivocation fallacy and now understand what you were trying to tell me. There are still many more terms I need to learn and understand. I watch and enjoy every link sent to me. There was one video in which I didn't understand one point from Hitchens but that gives me no right to disagree. Instead it gives me the right to pose questions to understand it. Now when I think I understand something I may give my opinion as I did with the Faith word. If I don't do this I can't learn. Next time I will try to ask questions when I disagree on something. That may be a better learning process for me .
@ In Spirit
Here is something I created that may help: RhetologicalFallacies2.pdf
HOLY SHIT EVERYONE LOOK!!!!!!! A THEIST WENT AND LOOKED SOMETHING UP ON THE INTERNET!!!!!! WHERE IS THE FUCKING EGGNOG. TIN, OLD MAN, ARAKISH, CYBERN, CALILASSEIA, IT'S A FRIGGING MIRACLE!!!! NYARLATHOTEP, KATACLISMIC, DoG, SHELDON - SHELDON - SHELDON - FOR FK SKAKE SOMEONE TAKE A PICTURE. A THEIST ACTUALLY TOOK THE TIME TO GO AND LOOK SOMETHING UP!!!!! IT'S A MIRACLE. IT'S A FRIGGING MIRACLE. GOD MUST BE REAL!!!!!!!! (NO - SCRATCH THAT LAST COMMENT, I WON'T GO THAT FAR..... HE HE HE.) WELL FK ME UNTIL I CAN'T STAND UP!!!! CON-FUCKING-GRADULATIONS MR. INSPIRIT. YOU JUST MIGHT BE CATCHING ON. IT TAKES A COUPLE OF MINUTES TO LOOK SOMETHING UP SO YOU DON'T SOUND LIKE AN IDIOT. I AM PROUD OF YOU SIR. CONGRATULATIONS!!! IT GETS SO BORING SAYING THE SAME FUCKING THING OVER AND OVER AND OVER TO THEISTS WHO WILL NOT DO THE WORK TO EVEN UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT. I AM FUCKING PROUD OF YOU,!!!! YOU DID THE RIGHT THING!!!!! THIS HAS GOT TO BE A FIRST AROUND HERE. A THEIST THAT FINALLY LOOKED SOMETHING UP. I CAN'T FRIGGING BELIEVE IT. HOLEY SHIT. WHERE IS THAT PHOTOGRAPHER AND WHAT IS HOLDING UP THE EGGNOG. BREAK OUT THE PARTY BALLOONS. SOMEONE IS ACTUALLY TRYING TO LEARN SOMETHING!!!!! AND IT HAPPENED ON ONE OF MY POSTS. I FEEL LIKE A PROUD FATHER. HE ACTUALLY USED THE INTERNET TO LOOK SOMETHING UP. HOLY SHIT! IT'S A FIRST FOR ME. I CAN'T BELIEVE IT. GREAT JOB ME INSPIRIT. YOU ARE GOING TO GET A WHOLE LOT MORE RESPECT AROUND HERE IF YOU JUST DO A BIT MORE OF THAT AND TALK A WHOLE LOT LESS. DID YOU ALL HEAR WHAT MY YOUNG SON SAID. HE IS FINALLY SPEAKING ENGLISH. HIS FIRST SENSIBLE WORDS "Next time I will try to ask questions when I disagree on something. That may be a better learning process for me ." AAAAAAAHHHHHHH! I'M GOING TO WET MYSELF. BABY STEPS!!!!! TAKE ANOTHER PICTURE!!!! GIVE EVERYONE A BANANA. WHO ELSE DO I NEED TO CALL? ALGEBE don't feel left out!!! DAVID you little lawn gnome, there is no party without you. LOGIC AND GRINSEED, STOP STANDING IN THE CORNER AND GET OVER HERE. AND ALL THE REST OF YOU WHEREVER YOU MAY BE....... LET'S ALL RAISE OUR CUPS IN A TOAST TO INSPIRIT AND HIS FIRST BABY STEPS .... WAIT A MINUTE,,,,,, WHERE IS THAT FUCKING EGGNOG!!!!!
Is there any eggnog left over?...lol
To everyone sending me links...I really appreciate it and I enjoy each one. Watching the debates on video is a real eyeopener. I find myself defending atheism in my real life situations when the topic brought forth by someone merits that response. I still have a long way to go, so if you don't hear from me often, I am reading the OP's and threads, looking up definitions, watching links, etc.
I will be asking more questions at the appropriate times from now on.
Thanks for the link arakish.... I have saved it for future reference.
...*bursting into room carrying 55 gallon keg on back*... *sets down keg*... *leans over with hands on knees huffing and puffing trying to catch breath*... Aw, fuckin' hell already, Cog!... *gasp-gasp*... Shit, dude! This shit doesn't get made instantly, ya know! Ain't like I can "miracle" water into eggnog! JESUS CHRIST, Mr. Patients!... *deeeeep breath*... *straightening up*... *working out kinks in back*... Damn... Never knew it was that far from the kitchen to the rec room... *wiping sweat from forehead*... *removing lid from keg*... Alright, everybody! Eggnog bar is now open! Help yourselves!... *dipping cup into keg*... Hey, somebody hand this to In Spirit...
Start passing these out (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 (~)0 There's more where these came from....
Jo, Jo, Jo
***shaking boughs in utter disbelief***
I have read this whole thread (hours I'll never get back, thus you owe $500 for my free time) twice. TWICE!
Why don't you just give up. Everything you have posted has done nothing but show how much knowledge you do not have. Go back to school. Actually learn something. Then come back in ten years.
You have had your arse and head both torn off, chewed up until they look like hamburger, then left for the vultures. C'mon dude. You have had everything completely debunked.
Give it up. You do not have the knowledge to refute our debunking of your bullshit and horse hoowhee.
Or are you masochistic?
ATHEISTS WIN ARGUMENTS WITH THEISTS BECAUSE THEISTS NEVER LOOK SHIT UP. And I may actually be mistaken about that where just a few minutes ago I would have asserted it with confidence.
Atheists win arguments with theists because theists believe in risible unevidenced archaic superstitions, and atheists...wait for it...do NOT.
Another I am going plagiarize the hell out of...
Thanks for the sympathy, or maybe it is pity. No, I am not masochistic.
I did not make you read the entire post twice, so I don't owe you $500. :-) Am I that interesting that you read it twice? :-)
I am going to keep at it for a while longer, as I lick my wounds. Not sure it is as one sided as you think it is. I am not trying to win, trying to be right.
Sadly, pressing errands mean I have to defer my latest contribution for a little while, but rest assured, it should prove suitably entertaining once I return. Especially as it has interesting ramifications for the whole god business. :)
Faith to me is something that you have when you are not 100% sure. I have faith that my car will start, I have faith that my arse is going to sting the day after a Vindaloo, I have faith that Manchester united will win something soon. As someone has pointed out these in reality are just reasonable expectations based on past experiences.
Saying that you have faith that a God exists puts a whole new spin onto the word... You are basically saying I'm believing this despite the lack of any sound evidence, I have no past experience that I can point to, and there is no way of testing the probability of my belief being true.
That's blind faith.
On a side note, I tend not to use the word faith... There are better, less confusing words to utilise based on my level of confidence.
Not sure that any of those require faith if I'm honest, as we have objective evidence in sound explanations of why those things might happen. Though I get your point about the context, one should be weary on here, given how often theists try to misrepresent things like atheism and science as requiring the same kind of faith, as religious beliefs that they can demonstrate no objective evidence for.
Trust or confidence, which are the words used in the primary definition of faith, can be derived from having sufficient objective evidence, parenthetically they can also be misplaced in things like religion where no objective evidence, nor any rational arguments can be demonstrated. Which is the secondary dictionary definition of faith, where religious belief is specifically mentioned. Thus the word faith ought to be used cautiously by atheists.
FWIW here is the dictionary definition, that theists so often ignore or misrepresent on here.
1. complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
2. strong belief in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual conviction rather than proof.
I concur completely.
So you think slavery, rapine, sex trafficking women prisoners, genocide, ethnic cleansing, encouraging human sacrifice including children, incest and a whole slew of other behaviours represents moral authority.
If not then your claim is so obviously absurdly wrong then it's hard to take anything you say seriously Jo.
This is an argumentum ad ignorantiam fallacy, nothing is validated because it cannot be disproved. The theist task would remain unevidenced, just Google common logical fallacies, and argumentum ad ignorantiam.
The more you ignore this simple fact about informal logic, the more dishonest your position appears.
This is an epistemological standard, there is no "side" involved, this is just you a theist baulking at the fact you hold a belief you cannot evidence. Atheism isn't an opposite side to theism, this is a misrepresentation of atheism.
Another dishonest misrepresentation of the facts, the standard of sufficient objective evidence has been set by the most demonstrably successful methods we have for validating all claims and beliefs, this has nothing whatsoever to do with atheism. Which you are again misrepresenting as an opposing side to theism. Atheism is the lack or absence of belief in any deity or deities, it a resulting position one adopts on one single belief, it is not a motivating cause.
No it puts the same burden of proof on theism as all other beliefs and claims, without any bias, approaching all ideas without bias is called being open minded. Though it is axiomatic that ideas, claims and beliefs for which no objective evidence can be demonstrated are at an epistemological disadvantage to those for which sufficient objective evidence can be demonstrated.
Atheism is the absence or lack of belief, again you are trying to dishonestly misrepresent it as a point that carries a burden of proof. This is a fallacy in informal logic, it is called (once again) argumentum ad ignorantiam. I don't believe any deity or deities exist, because no one can demonstrate any objective evidence to support the claim, and it is an objective fact that humans create fictional deities.
Theists have always done this and sill do, your problem here is that atheists refuse to share your belief because that standard is risible, and offers no rational argument, and not one shred of objective evidence to support the belief in thousands of years. One method is demonstrably the most successful we have for explaining reality, the other gave us risible false myths like Noah's flood and Genesis, myths that unravel when modern scientific methods are used to properly explain those events. How does ignoring this fact create a better standard for evidential proof? Science can go first, or it can go second, the fact remains all living things evolved and were not created in their current form as the bible claims, and archaeology shows there was never a global flood, nor could this have happened to 20ft above mt Everest (the highest peak) as the bible claims. I have no motive in favour of either claims, however the objective evidence demonstrates one to be true and the other to be a risible myth.
Which is more compelling the objective evidence presented by a doctor using medically validated objective evidence in someone's medical records that their treatment was successful, or an anecdotal claim by unqualified religious persons for a miracle? Which is more compelling an unevidenced anecdotal claim that a halo effect in a picture represents a miracle, or the expert testimony of a photographer based on objective evidence that the film used is known, and can be evidenced to, produce such a halo effect randomly because it was developed to be used in very low light?
The Catholic church ignored the objective evidence, and went with the woo woo unevidenced claims, and used them to canonise the sadistic Albanian nun called Mother Theresa. Now there are not two standards for evidence here, there is a single standard that demands only one objective position, and the theists ignored it to lie and promote their beliefs.
Theism is a belief, atheism is the absence of that belief. Atheism is not a contrary claim or belief. Until you understand that fact, and understand the basics of epistemology and logic, you will continue to fail to see how risible and irrational your thread premise is.
Do you feel you have a burden to prove that invisible unicorns don't exist? What might that evidence be exactly? If not then you are creating a double standard for your own beliefs, and the claims it makes, this is called a special pleading fallacy by the way.
Obviously, you could try using a telescope though.
If you looked for intelligent life inside of our solar system, you'd still struggle.
In my opinion, it's all about teaching children to ask questions to be the guards against their own indoctrination: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDQVdtFoC2U
Having whetted the appetite of one or two people with my earlier announcement, it's now time to try and live up to the billing therein. I'll begin by announcing that what follows is, by my own admission, a speculative piece, but one that is grounded in current cosmological physics, and on that basis, stands more chance of becoming reality than any number of fantastic and absurd mythological assertions.
One of the perennially observed features of supernaturalists, is that they never consider any candidates for the 'god' role, other than the candidate they favour from their particular choice of mythology. None of them ever ask themselves the question "What if the god that actually exists, is something different from the one I favour?" One of the hilarious ironies of the entire business of interacting with supernaturalists, is that I've probably asked myself a variant of this question (said variant taking into account that I don't have a candidate pre-selected for the role), more often of late than practically every supernaturalist I've encountered has asked said question in their entire lives. One of the more interesting hypothetical scenarios arising therefrom, I shall now present.
For the purpose of this hypothetical scenario, I shall refer to the exposition I gave in another thread on two papers published by Paul Steinhardt & Neil Turok, in which they presented a possible testable natural process for the instantiation of the observable universe and its contents, and which has observable consequences in this universe once said process has launched its instantiation mechanism.
In that post, I briefly explored the possibility of some future physicists being in a position to test the mechanism contained in those papers experimentally, but in that post, I was primarily interested in such experimentation being a "Game Over" moment for supernaturalist assertions, courtesy of the fact that the moment testable natural processes are demonstrated to be sufficient to explain a given class of entities and phenomena, supernatural entities become superfluous to requirements and irrelevant from that point on. Here, however, I want to explore an entirely different set of concepts.
Let us hypothesise, for this scenario, that the following have been established:
 The evidence for the Steinhardt-Turok mechanism described in those papers is, in the future, alighted upon by gravitational wave detectors;
 In that future, progress is made with respect to the relevant physics, to the point where the Steinhardt-Turok mechanism becomes directly testable in the laboratory;
 In that future, the requisite effort to build a laboratory to perform that experiment is exerted, the laboratory is constructed, and becomes operational.
So, the grand day arrives, when the laboratory becomes operational, and the scientists staffing said laboratory prepare for their grand experiment - the instantiation of an entirely new universe in the laboratory. The requisite experiment is run, and in a very short space of time, the data returning from the laboratory instruments indicates that the experiment has been a resounding success.
At this point, several ramifications are immediately brought home. The first being that, if one defines a 'god' as 'any entity capable of instantiating a universe', then that laboratory, its apparatus, and its scientist staff, treated as a single entity, are, in effect, the god of that newly instantiated universe. That this fact would probably cause a good few supernaturalists reading the news headlines to blow an artery the moment they woke up to this, is irrelevant to my point. The moment that experiment is successfully concluded, we would have hard evidence that the laboratory in question, its equipment and the scientists deploying said equipment, have collectively become the god of a new universe. Leaving aside for a moment any jokes about a universe produced by a committee that might spring to mind here, that hard evidence would naturally lead to the question of whether our universe had a similar origin. Of course, the scientists in that facility would simply point to their experiment, as hard evidence that our universe was the product of the same testable natural processes, and any speculation on whether those processes operated in a natural, unguided manner, or were pressed into service by like experimenters in a different universe, would probably remain unanswerable for a very long time.
But apart from destroying pretensions arising from mythological assertions wholesale, it would have a serious impact on the philosophical question of what sort of god, if any, actually exists out there. The moment some of our physicists become a de facto god for a new universe, it will only be natural for the philosophically inclined to ask whether our universe was the result of a similar past experiment by beings unknown.
Now, at the moment, the current state of knowledge in physics suggests that the moment a new universe is instantiated by this mechanism, it becomes detached from its origin in the requisite metric space, and causally disconnected therefrom. Which means that whilst those future scientists may be able to launch that new universe on its path, they are prevented by the laws of physics from finding out, from that point on, what is happening inside that newly launched universe. It becomes forever observationally sealed off from us. Which means that our new gods find themselves in the unusual position of being able to create a universe, but forever forbidden to observe its internals, let alone manipulate said internals. They would not merely be 'deist' gods in the sense of choosing not to intervene, but would be 'deist' gods in the sense of having no choice but to stay out of that universe's afairs - if you like, 'super-deist' gods.
As a corollary, if that newly launched universe evolved in such a manner as to produce within its confines, intelligent life forms conceptually akin to ourselves (even if the physical details are radically different), any generation by those beings of mythologies akin to those our species has produced, along with assertions to the effect that typical mythological gods exist, will be known to us in advance to be a futile exercise. We, the species whose efforts launched that new universe on its way, will know what the inhabitants thereof cannot for a long time even fantasise about. But, we will also know that our causal disconnection from its point of origin of our universe, forever prevents us from knowing if our universe arose by unguided natural occurrence of the requisite process, or occurrence guided by sufficiently sophisticated experimenters. That causal disconnect is a barrier never to be crossed - at least, this is the current view arising from the requisite cosmological deliberations.
This also opens up a veritable supertanker load of ethical questions, but I do not consider myself qualified to give these even the most cursory of treatments at this stage, other than perhaps to present a small sample of the relevant questions, but that is a topic for its own thread methinks.
However, even if the new physics allowing the hypothetical experiment presented above to become an engineering reality, also provides a means of overcoming that causal disconnect, and allows us to observe or even manipulate the contents of that universe to further our knowledge, there's an immediate problem to be faced. As fantastic and magical as such a capability will seem - possibly even to some of the scientists who have just performed the experiment - the scientists in question will still be constrained by whatever laws of physics are in operation in the requisite realms. As well as the laws of braneworld physics, they will be constrained by whatever variation of the laws of physics is in operation in that newly instantiated universe. 'Miracles', in the sense of suspending those laws whenever it is administratively convenient, will be out of the question. They might also find themselves having to contend with a newly launched universe, in which the internal physical laws thereof are sufficiently different to those in operation here, to make even elementary observations and manipulations a formidable task. In short, those scientists will, if this scenario is ever realised, discover that being a god is monumentally hard work, and not something that any sensible individual would undertake lightly.
I'll leave aside for the moment the interesting questions that arise, the moment one realises another very real possibility within this scenario. Namely, we know that the scientists operating that laboratory will eventually die. Chances are, that laboratory itself will only be a temporary affair, superseded by newer, better, more refined establishments. That universe launched by said laboratory will have been "created" by a temporary god. I'll let that one sink in for a while.
Now some here might think I've compiled this exposition, in part at least, as a juicy schadenfreude dig at supernaturalists, but while my exposition makes such sport possible, that's not the point. The point is, quite simply, that the world of ideas is as boundless as our imaginations, even when those imaginations are tempered by scientific knowledge, and exploration of the farthest reaches of the realm of ideas has been a defining characteristic of our species practically since the arrival thereof. Of course, care should be exercised to avoid nonsensical trajectories within that realm, but here lies two of my principal sources of exasperation with supernaturalists - one, the complete absence of any concern to avoid nonsensical trajectories within the space of ideas, if said nonsensical trajectories happen to be emotionally comforting, and two, the complete absence of any desire to explore speculative but essentially sensible trajectories that deviate from their current choices. Out of the myriad possibilities awaiting discovery by humans exerting at least some level of diligent effort, why should we be constrained by senile mythologies?
Indeed, the thought arose as I was writing this, that as well as validating the multiverse hypothesis, such an experiment would point to another conclusion. Namely, that any god genuinely responsible for the untold trillions of instantiated universes within the multiverse, would be far too busy being occupied as a full time research scientist tracking the diversity of behaviours of its products, to be in the least concerned with our petty obsessions with genitalia and doctrinal conformity.
@Calilasseia: Steinhardt-Turok mechanism? I am finding nothing related to this topic. I fully understand your post and the creation of a universe as well as the ramifications that you have asserted. I just could not find this "mechanism" you mention anyplace. As always I enjoyed the post and found it illuminating. I have read some of the stuff on inflationary cosmology, ekpyrotic cosmology and a lot of the multiverse stuff as well as information on dark energy. I don't know what the Steinhardt-Turok mechanism is. I think I missed it someplace.
It's basically collisions between branes. Though the two branes in question have to take a specific form for this to work - one has to be a positive-tension brane, the other a negative-tension brane. In a positive-tension brane, the gravitational force is attractive (i.e., any two masses embedded in the brane will accelerate toward each other), whilst in a negative-tension brane, the gravitational force is repulsive. The two papers establish that a collision between two such branes in a supergravity type metric space will result in a singularity-free instantiation of a universe.
Teasing out the technical details from the various Ricci calculus equations in those papers is not for the faint hearted, by the way ...
@ Cali and Cog
I get it! It explains the zombie jesus..he ate the Branes! *goes off laughing and clicking heels together*