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View Poll Results: How plausible is this theory (explain)?
You've convinced me, where do I join your cult? 0 0%
Nope, totally don't buy it. 10 83.33%
Sorta of, but I believe X instead... 2 16.67%
Voters: 12. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-22-2014, 06:18 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakback View Post
As a theist, I wonder if a fundamental difference between us, theists belief they have a "relationship" with the universe. That we are not some accidental result of billions of years of random events.
Maybe not so much a relationship, but certainly our perception of it is generally different.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakback View Post
The more we all learn about this universe, the more it appears there are universal laws within it.
Here I come to the opposite conclusion. When Newtonian mechanics were the universal laws we thought governed the universe, this idea seemed to be strong. There were an orderly set of mechanistic rules, reality is like clockwork, ergo there must be a clockmaker.

At this point, as I try to wrap my head around Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, the wave-particle duality, and the probabilistic nature of what we are learning about the universe, the universe appears too bizzare for me to assume a creator, at least a competent one. The more we learn about the universe the more we realize that the "rules" are just approximations of fuzzy, indistinct, seemingly random and chaotic behavior that is just plain weird!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakback View Post
I think atheists get hung up on the idea that "the creator" is a person, an entity, or an identifiable being.
Most theists believe this, however you can't get two to agree on the traits of this "creator".
Of course we do. A creator that is not an identifiable, conscious entity without a will, isn't much of a creator, it is just another natural force that shapes things. It doesn't want, doesn't plan, and in terms of being a god, doesn't matter. The only forms of god that matter are the ones that are distinguishable from "nature", from what we observe. Anything else is just playing word games.

-NoCapo
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Old 03-22-2014, 06:19 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakback View Post
As a theist, I wonder if a fundamental difference between us, theists belief they have a "relationship" with the universe. That we are not some accidental result of billions of years of random events.
I am sure that the fundamental difference between atheists and theists is that theists have opted into the idea that there is an invisible being who is looking after us all, and we have opted out of that belief and, to all intents and purposes, we are on our own.

Quote:
The more we all learn about this universe, the more it appears there are universal laws within it.
But the more we learn about it, the more they appear to be the result on the inherent properties of atoms, matter, and in the end life. It does not require an invisible human to decide that these laws shall be so.

Quote:
I think atheists get hung up on the idea that "the creator" is a person, an entity, or an identifiable being.
Most theists believe this, however you can't get two to agree on the traits of this "creator".
You are right. Which is why the atheists and indeed agnostics and Deists and perhaps many irreligious Theists, too, decide that Personal gods do not exist- they are an invention of human mythological ad hoc explanation of what otherwise they can't explain.

Now,as to a possible intentional creative element behind all that, Boxcar knows, even atheists can't rule that out. We just say that, for all we know, it could have come about without an intent; an 'Accident' as Mystic says, though 'by chance' (as many theists say), misses the point. It happens for reasons- laws of the universe,as you say. But there is no good reason nor evidence to support the belief that somebody had to make dem laws.

Quote:
Nevertheless, laws of the universe appear to be pretty universal. And if I was an atheist, that would give me pause.
It does. It is a good question, but it not only answerable with an intelligent intention.

Quote:
I'm no expert, but this universe of ours is elegant in it's design.
If you were an expert, you would also see that it is pretty chaotic. The 'Elegance' is simply down two the sheer size and complexity of it and that it works in a pretty regular and predictable manner. That is because what didn't would have ceased to work long ago and so the Cosmos jogs along with what works.

Quote:
Some may say it's hubris to imply that we humans are so wonderful, only some kind of intelligent designer could have conceived of, and created us.
It is. Or rather it is a too easy and quick answer to some questions we couldn't answer. A big invisible human dunnit all, was a pretty easy one. But, just as we know that lightning is natural and not an angry god throwing spears and comets are natural and not a sign of some disaster or other, there is no reason to believe it any more- except that theists, brainwashed into believing the contents of a Holy Book ignore, frankly, the explanations that are there and insist on First Cause, the watchmaker and ID as being the only possible explanation.

Quote:
On the other hand, it would take a great deal of faith on my part, to believe its all entirely random.
It isn't; it is a process of well-known natural physical 'Laws' that produced the Universe and the biological laws that produced us.

Now I can't rule out some kind of cosmic consciousness, even though I do rule out a personal god of the kind described in the Bible, but neither can I rule out explanations that do not require a creative cosmic consciousness. In other words I don't know and since I have seen only evidence that suggests natural processes that do not require intelligent input, that is the preferred (default) explanation until some better case is presented than is made by First cause and watchmaker arguments.

If you are willing to be agnostic about it, we have no quarrel. If you insist that an invisible creative cosmic mind has to be the answer and natural processes are not an equally probable explanation, then it is you who is making a faith-based statement, unless you can give good reasons why goddunnit should be by far the most probable explanation.

As explained above, so far you have not. They are either a failure to understand the naturalist case or a preference for pushing it away in favour of First cause.

It is up to you. I know that the case for God (other than as a possibility) does not stand up and so I am not going to be persuaded. The only question is whether you will consider the cases for both sides with an open mind or prefer to believe goddunnit on Faith.

Last edited by TRANSPONDER; 03-22-2014 at 06:32 AM..
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Old 03-22-2014, 06:41 AM
 
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Of course.. the above exchange has reminded me of the ways in which atheism might be reconciled with theism. Agnostic Theism and indeed deism is not a problem. They do not postulate a hands-on micromanaging God that requires anything from us.

Irreligious theism too may be reconciled with atheism, as they believe in a god, but not in organized religion, which they see as man - made organizations having nothing to do with the god they believe in.

It is only the theism that is part of organized religion, believing a a lot of rules and required beliefs and wishes of a particular god as set down in a Holy Book, that cannot be reconciled with atheism, because it will not be reconciled with us.
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Old 03-22-2014, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Maryland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
Of course.. the above exchange has reminded me of the ways in which atheism might be reconciled with theism. Agnostic Theism and indeed deism is not a problem. They do not postulate a hands-on micromanaging God that requires anything from us.

Irreligious theism too may be reconciled with atheism, as they believe in a god, but not in organized religion, which they see as man - made organizations having nothing to do with the god they believe in.

It is only the theism that is part of organized religion, believing a a lot of rules and required beliefs and wishes of a particular god as set down in a Holy Book, that cannot be reconciled with atheism, because it will not be reconciled with us.
I agree.

Perhaps theists (like myself) make the initial leap, in choosing to believe in "intelligent design".
And then it begins.

No doubt,the articulation of this "belief" by various institutions has caused great dissention, pain and suffering over the millennia.

Nevertheless, religions are full of well meaning people who ask the questions we all struggle with.
Although I find the "deposit" of religious writings over the millennia to be fascinating, I acknowledge their limitations. I don't worship theistic manuscripts. I don't worship any religious institution, or any human being.

Religious institutions have no monopoly on pain and suffering. And yet I can fully appreciate some of the causes of atheism. And it is the same thing that disturbs me about organized religion.

I just have not made the leap to be "A(anti)theist".
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Old 03-22-2014, 08:47 AM
 
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While Intelligent Design has been shown to be scientifically unsound even if you believed that it was a persuasive theory, I could respectfully agree to disagree (though I would continue to ague the scientific case) and we could disagree amicably, provided that you kept it as a personal belief and did not push for it to be taught in the science class. Because it is not sound science.

If you were an irreligious theist - that is not having any belief in or truck with organized religions, then (under the Penn Jillet initiative-I wish I could find that You - tube again) I would regard you ascamped in the irreligious laager, even if not adding to the legion of anti - religion.

Because we goddless satanscum are not so much anti religion as an idea, but anti the influence of organized religion on society, politics, and if they were allowed to get away with it (they were stopped just in time) in education and science, too.

In that respect, you and I may be on the same side.
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Old 03-22-2014, 11:12 AM
 
Location: Maryland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
While Intelligent Design has been shown to be scientifically unsound even if you believed that it was a persuasive theory, I could respectfully agree to disagree (though I would continue to ague the scientific case) and we could disagree amicably, provided that you kept it as a personal belief and did not push for it to be taught in the science class. Because it is not sound science.

If you were an irreligious theist - that is not having any belief in or truck with organized religions, then (under the Penn Jillet initiative-I wish I could find that You - tube again) I would regard you ascamped in the irreligious laager, even if not adding to the legion of anti - religion.

Because we goddless satanscum are not so much anti religion as an idea, but anti the influence of organized religion on society, politics, and if they were allowed to get away with it (they were stopped just in time) in education and science, too.

In that respect, you and I may be on the same side.

I prefer not to appear as being "one a side".
We're all in this together. And I'm always open to respectful discussion between well meaning people.

Frankly , I find the discussions on this forum much more edifying than the dogmatic and virulent babble on the "Christianity" forum.
And as a "Christian", I find it embarrassing.

It's harder for me to intelligently discuss differences with a fundamentalist Christian, than with an atheist.
After a long hiatus from city-data, I find myself drawn more to this group of atheists.

If I had to sum up my "religion", I am a "fundamentally anti fundamentalist" theist.
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Old 03-22-2014, 11:22 AM
 
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Thank you for your encouraging words.

I agree that I find the mentally uncontrolled squabbling about what appears to be unvalidated speculations argued as fact both bewildering and unedifying. I have also seen some rather intolerant -looking stuff from the atheist side. I would certainly encourage understanding between atheists and theists of all kinds even if they disagreed.
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Old 03-22-2014, 02:43 PM
 
354 posts, read 246,277 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakback
Nevertheless, laws of the universe appear to be pretty universal. And if I was an atheist, that would give me pause.
First, laws imply a lawgiver. Second, they're more like physical limitations than laws. But most importantly, what ever these limits are or however they're describe, I certainly would not believe them to be nor refer to them as a god, nor do I believe there needs to be a god to apply them. They're more likely innate to our natural reality. This gives no pause to my atheism whatsoever.
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Old 03-22-2014, 02:50 PM
 
354 posts, read 246,277 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
Of course.. the above exchange has reminded me of the ways in which atheism might be reconciled with theism. Agnostic Theism and indeed deism is not a problem. They do not postulate a hands-on micromanaging God that requires anything from us.

Irreligious theism too may be reconciled with atheism, as they believe in a god, but not in organized religion, which they see as man - made organizations having nothing to do with the god they believe in.

It is only the theism that is part of organized religion, believing a a lot of rules and required beliefs and wishes of a particular god as set down in a Holy Book, that cannot be reconciled with atheism, because it will not be reconciled with us.
Good points, Arq.
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Old 03-22-2014, 02:55 PM
 
354 posts, read 246,277 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakback
After a long hiatus from city-data, I find myself drawn more to this group of atheists.
Welcome to the Dark-side

Seriously though, I post on forums like this in an attempt to understand why people are god believers. It's actually a bit of a mystery from my perspective. It's always good to have seemingly nice and respectable people like yourself, Oakback, to learn from.
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