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View Poll Results: Do you consider yourself an agnostic or atheist?
agnostic 57 36.54%
atheist 99 63.46%
Voters: 156. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-17-2014, 01:00 AM
 
7,802 posts, read 5,285,422 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar Overkill View Post
No one said evolution must always move up
That is the assumption built into your position. You are talking about species that have had more time to evolve, and are assuming that this means they are massively ahead of our species in terms of intelligence and/or technology to the point of being almost godlike.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar Overkill View Post
only that it tends to move up
And as I pointed out the other error is that you even have a concept of "Up" in the first place. Evolution has no "up" or "down". Merely adaption to the current environment. In terms of evolution what you might consider "down" is actually a positive adaption to an environment.

For example with this subjective idea of "up".... a species that had no eyes that then developed them has gone "up". If that species then looses them it does "down". Yet this subjective impression is in error. There is no "up" and "down" and species do lose their eyes, for example, as a positive adaption to an environment where they are no longer beneficial and may even be a hindrance. And we have examples of species who have done just that, "lost" their eyes in such a fashion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar Overkill View Post
I think my understanding of what is "very likely" is more in line with currant scientific thought than your interpretation.
So your defense of your position comes down to reiterating that you are impressed by your own position? That is hardly an argument or defense of a position. I am explaining above exactly what the two errors in your position is. Blindly touting how great you feel your own position to be does not address the issues within that position.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar Overkill View Post
That's an interesting definition of "natural", but it's not helpful in discussing gods.
Except yes it is. Words are often contextual and discussing the word "natural" in the context of religion and gods clearly needs a definition that makes contextual sense. Reading my posts and that of many people around here on this forum as I have for some years now.... it is clear that a large number here make the distinction that "natural" refers to a lack of intentional agent. Things produced or caused by the mindless processes of nature.

There is no arguments, evidence, data or reasoning.... much less from the theists currently posting diatribes on this thread..... to suggest anything but natural causes for things like the universe, human consciousness, or evolution. That is why the atheists on atheists forums are atheist. There is simply no indication of intelligent agency behind the universe or our existence in it. This is what is meant here by "natural".
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:38 AM
 
354 posts, read 246,030 times
Reputation: 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mystic
Wrong. This is a sham and red herring to pretend that the default status of reality is No God. Theism is a statement about the status of reality . . . NOT a belief
Theism is specifically about belief, this is where you are wrong. I give you kudos though trying to redefine what the word means to fit an agenda, as well as its antithesis. I hate to pull out dictionary definitions of theist/theism, but it seems necessary in this instance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wiki
Theism, in the broadest sense, is the belief that at least one deity exists.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dictionary.com
1. the belief in one God as the creator and ruler of the universe, without rejection of revelation (distinguished from deism ).


2. belief in the existence of a god or gods (opposed to atheism ).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merriam-Webster
: belief in the existence of a god or gods; specifically : belief in the existence of one God viewed as the creative source of the human race and the world who transcends yet is immanent in the world

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Free Dictionary
Belief in the existence of a god or gods, especially belief in a personal God as creator and ruler of the world.
I could go on and on, shall I?

I do not know if reality contains a god or not, but the default position about believing in such a thing should be null until sufficient evidence presents itself. It should also be noted, much to your objections, most of the atheists here have openly admitted they do not know whether a god exists or not. You've already won that battle and now you wish to redefine theism to fit what you'd like it to mean.


Theism is NOT a statement about reality, theism is a statement about something (specifically a god) you believe about reality. Whether that belief is true or not is the subject of much debate.
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:42 AM
 
354 posts, read 246,030 times
Reputation: 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mystic
I prefer you say "I don't know if God exists" because that is an honest statement of the situation.
Very well, I do not know if a god exists. At the same time I also do not believe a god exists. Both are completely honest statements. Unless you're questioning my integrity?
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:24 AM
 
39,205 posts, read 10,887,543 times
Reputation: 5096
Quote:
Originally Posted by NOTaTHEIST View Post
Very well, I do not know if a god exists. At the same time I also do not believe a god exists. Both are completely honest statements. Unless you're questioning my integrity?
No. Mystic is questioning your ability to see the 'obvious' which is a term he has used to describe the existence of 'God'.

This 'God' (you will find) is not open to the usual arguments. You will soon find that it it is everything that we can see and know and which is indeed 'obvious'. But it is not so obvious why it is 'God'.

Back to you and have fun in your discussion with Mystic.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:13 AM
 
Location: OKC
5,426 posts, read 5,732,803 times
Reputation: 1770
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nozzferrahhtoo View Post
That is the assumption built into your position. You are talking about species that have had more time to evolve, and are assuming that this means they are massively ahead of our species in terms of intelligence and/or technology to the point of being almost godlike.
That is untrue. I am assuming some species, given more time to evolve, would likely be more advanced than ours. I acknowledge some would not be more advanced. I assume a random mix, where humans are neither exceptionally advanced nor exceptionally backward. It's the law of large numbers that puts the bacteria-like species on one tail of the bell curve, and god-like species on the other tail of the curve.

This is a reasonable assumption. Why do you assume humans are the most or nearly the most advanced species in the universe? Why shouldn't we be average?

Having more time certainly gives more opportunity for advancement than short time scales.


Quote:
And as I pointed out the other error is that you even have a concept of "Up" in the first place. Evolution has no "up" or "down". Merely adaption to the current environment. In terms of evolution what you might consider "down" is actually a positive adaption to an environment.

For example with this subjective idea of "up".... a species that had no eyes that then developed them has gone "up". If that species then looses them it does "down". Yet this subjective impression is in error. There is no "up" and "down" and species do lose their eyes, for example, as a positive adaption to an environment where they are no longer beneficial and may even be a hindrance. And we have examples of species who have done just that, "lost" their eyes in such a fashion.
Again, you seem to only address evolution in the strictly biological sense.

But even under your description, you don't appear to take into account how the large number of species evolving are going to produce species at one tail of the curve that are more advanced and more complex.




Quote:
Except yes it is. Words are often contextual and discussing the word "natural" in the context of religion and gods clearly needs a definition that makes contextual sense. Reading my posts and that of many people around here on this forum as I have for some years now.... it is clear that a large number here make the distinction that "natural" refers to a lack of intentional agent. Things produced or caused by the mindless processes of nature.

There is no arguments, evidence, data or reasoning.... much less from the theists currently posting diatribes on this thread..... to suggest anything but natural causes for things like the universe, human consciousness, or evolution. That is why the atheists on atheists forums are atheist. There is simply no indication of intelligent agency behind the universe or our existence in it. This is what is meant here by "natural".
Two problems with your definition of "natural." First, it includes a great number of things that people include in the term "supernatural." A unicorn, for example, would not be the product of an intelligent agent. Second, it's circular, in the sense that you are describing natural as being the product of nature.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:09 AM
 
40,103 posts, read 26,772,494 times
Reputation: 6050
Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
You are still missing the point. Existence is a matter of fact . . . not beliefs. Atheists routinely ask for proof of God on the basis of their default which is clearly that "God does not exist" . . . or there would be no need for proof that "God does exist." Since they don't know if our very "Godlike" reality is God or not . . . their default usurps neutrality by imposing their view on reality under the pretense of non-belief. Belief has nothing to do with it whatsoever. We don't decide what is true about reality on the basis of beliefs. You are correct that ANY specific set of beliefs ABOUT God must pass muster on its own merits . . . but the default about the very existence of God remains "We don't Know."
Quote:
Originally Posted by NOTaTHEIST View Post
Theism is specifically about belief, this is where you are wrong. I give you kudos though trying to redefine what the word means to fit an agenda, as well as its antithesis. I hate to pull out dictionary definitions of theist/theism, but it seems necessary in this instance.
I could go on and on, shall I?
No thanks . . . it is pointless. It is the default that is in question because a default is a statement about the state of reality that is presumed to be true until shown otherwise. You cannot presume the state of reality to be anything other than "We do not know."
Quote:
I do not know if reality contains a god or not, but the default position about believing in such a thing should be null until sufficient evidence presents itself.
That is the sham, flim flam, Texas sidestep, etc. The default is NOT about belief. It is about the state of reality to be presumed true. That is a positive claim no matter how you try to cloak it under non-belief.
Quote:
It should also be noted, much to your objections, most of the atheists here have openly admitted they do not know whether a god exists or not. You've already won that battle and now you wish to redefine theism to fit what you'd like it to mean.
That is big of them since it is undeniable. NO . . . I seek to eliminate the sham of claiming the default state of reality under the pretense of a belief/non-belief issue. It has nothing to do with belief. A default is a definitive statement about the state of reality to be presumed true unless shown to be otherwise. Atheists have no basis . . . scientific or otherwise . . . to make such a claim about reality because "We don't know."
Quote:
Theism is NOT a statement about reality, theism is a statement about something (specifically a god) you believe about reality. Whether that belief is true or not is the subject of much debate.
That is irrelevant. Beliefs or non-beliefs do NOT establish the default state of reality, period. The default state about the status of reality is "We don't know."
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:19 AM
 
40,103 posts, read 26,772,494 times
Reputation: 6050
Quote:
Originally Posted by NOTaTHEIST View Post
Very well, I do not know if a god exists. At the same time I also do not believe a god exists. Both are completely honest statements. Unless you're questioning my integrity?
I am not questioning your integrity . . . just your misunderstanding of what a default IS. It is a positive claim about the state of reality that is presumed true unless shown to be otherwise, period. The presumed default state of the status of reality is . . . wait for it . . . "We do NOT know!"
Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
No. Mystic is questioning your ability to see the 'obvious' which is a term he has used to describe the existence of 'God'.
No, Arq . . . I am questioning your and his understanding of the term default. See above (repeatedly).
Quote:
This 'God' (you will find) is not open to the usual arguments. You will soon find that it it is everything that we can see and know and which is indeed 'obvious'. But it is not so obvious why it is 'God'.
Back to you and have fun in your discussion with Mystic.
I acknowledge that God cannot be the default state of reality . . . but you and your ilk do not acknowledge that it applies equally to your preferred default. NEITHER one is possible while "We don't know." Trying to avoid that undeniable truth using belief/non-belief is a sham, flim flam, Texas sidestep, etc. because beliefs/non-beliefs only establish the state of mind of individuals, They do NOT establish the state of reality, period.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:36 AM
 
39,205 posts, read 10,887,543 times
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Surprising, since we have discussed this endlessly. And I now have to question either your understanding or integrity, because you know that I know that you know that I know what a 'default' is, and the only disagreement is whether the materialist one is the more valid one than the 'God' default.

You also know-or should -that your efforts to discredit materialism as the preferred view of nature/Existence/reality, and thereby overturn the materialist default and reverse the burden of proof on the theist to prove their case and (by some chop-logic Alchemy) to validate the 'God as a given' assumption which is the basis of all your argument, have monumentally failed.

Not because I am smarter or better qualified than you, but because your Theist case is fatally flawed and mine is logically sound.
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:20 PM
 
40,103 posts, read 26,772,494 times
Reputation: 6050
Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
I am not questioning your integrity . . . just your misunderstanding of what a default IS. It is a positive claim about the state of reality that is presumed true unless shown to be otherwise, period. The presumed default state of the status of reality is . . . wait for it . . . "We do NOT know!"
No, Arq . . . I am questioning your and his understanding of the term default. See above (repeatedly).I acknowledge that God cannot be the default state of reality . . . but you and your ilk do not acknowledge that it applies equally to your preferred default. NEITHER one is possible while "We don't know." Trying to avoid that undeniable truth using belief/non-belief is a sham, flim flam, Texas sidestep, etc. because beliefs/non-beliefs only establish the state of mind of individuals, They do NOT establish the state of reality, period.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
Surprising, since we have discussed this endlessly. And I now have to question either your understanding or integrity, because you know that I know that you know that I know what a 'default' is, and the only disagreement is whether the materialist one is the more valid one than the 'God' default.
You also know-or should -that your efforts to discredit materialism as the preferred view of nature/Existence/reality, and thereby overturn the materialist default and reverse the burden of proof on the theist to prove their case and (by some chop-logic Alchemy) to validate the 'God as a given' assumption which is the basis of all your argument, have monumentally failed.
Not because I am smarter or better qualified than you, but because your Theist case is fatally flawed and mine is logically sound.
YOU can BELIEVE whatever default you PREFER, Arq . . . and I can BELIEVE whatever default I prefer. But what WE believe has NO bearing on what IS. What IS . . . is simply . . . wait for it . . . "We do NOT know!" It will remain that way until we DO know. No flim flam, sham, Texas sidestep, etc. about BELIEF/NON-BELIEF can change it. Belief has NOTHING to do with the state of reality and ignorance about the state of reality does not change that. Belief/non-belief refers to our state of mind . . . NOT the state of reality.
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Old 04-17-2014, 02:22 PM
 
39,205 posts, read 10,887,543 times
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Mystic,That I can put my case up against a teaching Phd in Philosophy is because it is simple enough for me to understand it in terms of bog -standard rule of logic.

The world around us is seen to work through mechanisms that appear to function without any input form a conscious thinking being. Thus materialist nature is a known, and a cosmic intelligence is not demonstrable by any evidence or argument that you have advanced.

Thus the materialist default is there, obvious and indisputable and the burden of proof falls squarely on the theist to make a case for a cosmic consciousness Aka 'God'.

If you fail to do that, then every part of your case collapses.

There is still a hypothesis, based on the remaining unexplaineds. Cosmic origins, Abiogenesis, the 'what actually is it?' rhetorical question that you ask which is rather irrelevant.

I am interested in the recent chat and books about Cosmic Consciousness and you may turn out to be right. But if so, it is by accident. Your case I am now sure is (as I said) all washed up, so you can shout in Block letters and thunder as much as you like. I am now sure of my ground on this, and I hope to help out any poster who may be struggling (as I did) in trying to grasp your argument.

So, the relevance is that we do not know whether there is a god or not (no matter what one might legitimately put the name to. As I have said, just slapping the name 'God' onto materialist nature and then claiming that 'God' exists is simply a rhetorical swindle) and the very, very, simple logically mandated response to a claim that we do not know to be true is to reserve belief on it until we do know- to a reasonably compelling degree.

Thus agnosticism is the basis of atheism and atheism is mandated by agnosticism. But I am willing to be broad -minded about those who consider themselves agnostic but not atheist.
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