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God Doesn't Exist

God Doesn't Exist
WLC is clearly one who weights strength of belief as a measure of veracity - an all too common error that afflicts too much of humanity.  How many times as children were we told not getting what we wanted was because we weren't wishing for it hard enough?  The church still says that, to adults.
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God Doesn't Exist
(04-11-2024, 05:28 PM)airportkid Wrote: WLC is clearly one who weights strength of belief as a measure of veracity - an all too common error that afflicts too much of humanity.  How many times as children were we told not getting what we wanted was because we weren't wishing for it hard enough?  The church still says that, to adults.

That's incorrect. He believes personal experience as veridical in assessing whether a belief is reasonable...like every single person in the entire world does.
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God Doesn't Exist
(04-11-2024, 05:49 PM)SteveII Wrote: ... He believes personal experience as veridical in assessing whether a belief is reasonable ...

Exactly.  He interprets experience according to belief, and dismisses evidence that conflicts with his belief, because belief to him carries greater weight than evidence that would contradict it.  No experience has meaning to us until we interpret it and incorporate it into the matrix of knowledge and beliefs we apply to being able to function.

I believe 1 + 1 = 2.  For me it's a very strong belief, strong enough to classify as knowledge.  But if a credible mathematician or scientist or someone with a reputation of high credibility were to advance an argument that 1 + 1 does not always = 2, that sometimes it = 3, I would not be able to dismiss it, because my qualifications to evaluate the proposition would be far inferior to the qualifications of the high credibility expert - and even if I were incapable of comprehending the argument, I would still have to defer to the expert because of the difference between our qualifications.  My sheer strength of belief carries no weight.
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Hard to BELIEVE that anyone could be dumb enough to defend a con man like WLC.  But there it is.
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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(04-11-2024, 07:22 PM)Minimalist Wrote: Hard to BELIEVE that anyone could be dumb enough to defend a con man like WLC.  But there it is.

Believers rationalize away all sorts of stuff and Steve's got it bad. The desire for the golden ticket over powers reason.
Being told you're delusional does not necessarily mean you're mental. 
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(04-11-2024, 06:36 PM)airportkid Wrote:
(04-11-2024, 05:49 PM)SteveII Wrote: ... He believes personal experience as veridical in assessing whether a belief is reasonable ...

Exactly.  He interprets experience according to belief, and dismisses evidence that conflicts with his belief, because belief to him carries greater weight than evidence that would contradict it.  No experience has meaning to us until we interpret it and incorporate it into the matrix of knowledge and beliefs we apply to being able to function.

Not at all. His consistent experience is evidence--evidence that is foundational in constructing one's beliefs (in this case the reality that God exists). You have the process backwards. One does not just magically acquire beliefs about the world. It is experiences that help you build out your views of the world and your basket of key beliefs about what is true (a worldview). While there is a kind of cyclical nature between existing beliefs informing how you experience the world which then informs your future beliefs, your criticism assumes that beliefs must precede experience, an assumption which itself is not evident. Whether his experiences are real is something that you could not possibly know. Suggesting that his experiences are mistaken because God does not exist is begging the question (circular reasoning, assuming your conclusion, a logical fallacy).

Quote:I believe 1 + 1 = 2.  For me it's a very strong belief, strong enough to classify as knowledge.  But if a credible mathematician or scientist or someone with a reputation of high credibility were to advance an argument that 1 + 1 does not always = 2, that sometimes it = 3, I would not be able to dismiss it, because my qualifications to evaluate the proposition would be far inferior to the qualifications of the high credibility expert - and even if I were incapable of comprehending the argument, I would still have to defer to the expert because of the difference between our qualifications.  My sheer strength of belief carries no weight.

That's not analogous. We are talking about internal personal experiences that while defeasible, are in a class by themselves (a unique epistemic status). For example, what if you were given a evidence that you were a brain in a vat and other people do not really exist? Are you required to accept all of your past experiences as unreal? Generally, we trust our experiences unless there is substantial reason to doubt them, and even then, the process of doubting and re-evaluating is based on other experiences and beliefs.
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God Doesn't Exist
Stevie quote: One does not just magically acquire beliefs about the world. It is experiences that help you build out your views of the world and your basket of key beliefs about what is true (a worldview)/quote.

It all begins with the brainwashing of children. No one comes to Christianity or Islam, etc. without first being told what the answer is, which god to believe or how to interpret the world. Beliefs are taught from our beginning.

The problem is that WLC’s evidence is only evidence to him. If someone has never had any evidence of any kind, his beliefs will only ever be his own….so why bother to try and convince someone else that his personal experience is true if one has never had his experience. We don’t necessarily believe in ghosts just because someone experienced one and we haven’t.
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Quote:.so why bother to try and convince someone else that his personal experience is true 


Because there are fuckheads like Stevie who fork over money to buy his bullshit.  Oddly, it is the same tactic that fuckface  uses.
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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(04-12-2024, 01:06 AM)pattylt Wrote: Stevie quote: One does not just magically acquire beliefs about the world. It is experiences that help you build out your views of the world and your basket of key beliefs about what is true (a worldview)/quote.

It all begins with the brainwashing of children.  No one comes to Christianity or Islam, etc. without first being told what the answer is, which god to believe or how to interpret the world.  Beliefs are taught from our beginning.

The problem is that WLC’s evidence is only evidence to him.  If someone has never had any evidence of any kind, his beliefs will only ever be his own….so why bother to try and convince someone else that his personal experience is true if one has never had his experience.  We don’t necessarily believe in ghosts just because someone experienced one and we haven’t.

Well, that' simple. His parents were not Christians and he knew nothing about Christianity and he become one as a late teen. How does that (and the 2,700,000 other adults who become Christians each year) fit into your theory?

Sure, WLC's personal experience is only evidence for him. The entire question being discussed now is if he is justified in relying on that evidence as part of his belief in God and to what extent. Also, he never ever uses the fact of his personal experience as an argument for God. If he brings it up, it is in the context of what is justified or reasonable for a single person to believe (as we are). Of course you're welcome to point me to a place you think he did so and I will take a look.
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God Doesn't Exist
Oh sure, knew nothing about christianity. Pull my other one, it has bells on it.
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What he knew about jesusism was that he could make a fortune selling horseshit to morons.  Con men always see the mark coming a mile away.
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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(04-12-2024, 01:28 AM)SteveII Wrote: Well, that' simple. His parents were not Christians and he knew nothing about Christianity and he become one as a late teen. How does that (and the 2,700,000 other adults who become Christians each year) fit into your theory?

Two points, first William Lane Craig didn't claim his parents were not Christians or that he knew nothing about Christianity. He claimed he was not raised in an evangelical home and became an evangelical Christians in his late high school by being in contact with many such students. Second points, there are millions of people who get convinced each year to invest in air-brain pyramid schemes, fall for absurd conspiracy theory and get conned in all sorts of ways and many hold on to such belief even after they were exposed as cons and frauds. There are millions of people being swindled each year. 

I would also like to note that the 2,7 million people number also includes children and teens since there are no distinction for age in the statistic (the number is also considers "new converts" lapsed Christians who return to the faith) and this stat in particular dates back from estimates published in 2001. It's rather old though the source is okay-ish in general.
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WLC would have to have lived in a cave. Christianity in the USA is ubiquitous, every form of communication has it. Every person has heard of it. I can't go a week without getting a 'god bless you'.

I guess there's always the chance that some bad actor slipped this in his drink during school lunch...........

[Image: 63fe79101a498.image.png?resize=1396%2C783]
Being told you're delusional does not necessarily mean you're mental. 
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Quote:and became an evangelical Christians in his late high school by being in contact with many such students. 


Translation:  WLC is easily swayed by fools!



Let's see what jesus freaks really think about their fucking god.

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politic...rcna147422


Quote:Maine GOP lawmaker says Lewiston shooting was God's wrath in response to law expanding abortion access



Quote:Two Maine lawmakers are facing possible censure after one said the deadliest mass shooting in the state, in Lewiston in October, was a sign of retribution from God over the passage of a law expanding abortion access by the Democratic-led state Legislature and other “immoral laws."

During a floor debate Wednesday, state Republican state Rep. Michael Lemelin said God “draws a line in the sand, and when we crossed that line there’s consequences.”



His god is a fucking dick....and doubtless so is he.
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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(04-11-2024, 11:43 PM)SteveII Wrote: ... His consistent experience is evidence ...

Like experience, evidence in and of itself is meaningless; it's its interpretation.  Anything and everything is evidence, evidence of what is the pertinent question.

To the believer in a supernatural god, the beauty of a sunset, the symmetry of a daisy, the absence of rain during a Sunday picnic, that Beatrix Lushly in your 11th grade chemistry class said yes to a date is often interpreted as a godly intervention.  But such interpretations are incompetent, mostly because they fail to account for more likely interpretations.

At no time in all human history has anyone indicated, incontestably, that such and such event, feeling or emergence could have only been by divine cause.  It's claimed all the time, but never incontestably.  There are always alternative possible explanations that do not invoke the supernatural.

And that prompts a crucial question:  what have WLC or theists in these threads experienced that is incontestably divine?  What is their god's tangible effect on this earth?  Absent that god, what would this earth look like?  What would this earth look like as indicated by incontestably evaluated evidence?

Should an actual answer emerge, it would be earthshaking, and not hidden in the postings of an internet forum.
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(04-11-2024, 11:43 PM)SteveII Wrote: ... His consistent experience is evidence ...
...for having experieces. Period

I am having consistent experiences that you are full of shit (like claiming that ancient slavery was a "safety net"). Ergo, you are an idiot.
R.I.P. Hannes
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(04-12-2024, 10:16 AM)Deesse23 Wrote:  claiming that ancient slavery was a "safety net"

Good fucking grief; what sort of madden idiot would say such a thing?
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(04-12-2024, 01:59 AM)epronovost Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 01:28 AM)SteveII Wrote: Well, that' simple. His parents were not Christians and he knew nothing about Christianity and he become one as a late teen. How does that (and the 2,700,000 other adults who become Christians each year) fit into your theory?

Two points, first William Lane Craig didn't claim his parents were not Christians or that he knew nothing about Christianity. He claimed he was not raised in an evangelical home and became an evangelical Christians in his late high school by being in contact with many such students. Second points, there are millions of people who get convinced each year to invest in air-brain pyramid schemes, fall for absurd conspiracy theory and get conned in all sorts of ways and many hold on to such belief even after they were exposed as cons and frauds. There are millions of people being swindled each year. 

I would also like to note that the 2,7 million people number also includes children and teens since there are no distinction for age in the statistic (the number is also considers "new converts" lapsed Christians who return to the faith) and this stat in particular dates back from estimates published in 2001. It's rather old though the source is okay-ish in general.

Still, seems like Patty's "No one comes to Christianity or Islam, etc. without first being told what the answer is, which god to believe or how to interpret the world. Beliefs are taught from our beginning." is obviously wrong. Technically, a composition fallacy.

Your counterpoints as to what other people can be talked into are not quite analogous either. Everything you described takes advantage of a person's greed, while becoming a Christian involves an entire worldview change from top to bottom.
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(04-12-2024, 10:38 AM)epronovost Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 10:16 AM)Deesse23 Wrote:  claiming that ancient slavery was a "safety net"

Good fucking grief; what sort of madden idiot would say such a thing?
The same kinda idiot who thinks WLC is having good arguments to back up his cause. WLC, a guy who is on record saying that (paraphrasing) "the self authenticating* experience provided by the holy spirit will trump each and every single piece of evidence that reality around him can provide, given they are in conflict.
WLC is the textbook definition of being delusional (and most probably also being very, very dishonest).


*wtf is that even?
R.I.P. Hannes
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(04-12-2024, 01:51 PM)SteveII Wrote: Your counterpoints as to what other people can be talked into are not quite analogous either. Everything you described takes advantage of a person's greed, while becoming a Christian involves an entire worldview change from top to bottom.

That would also be a composition fallacy. Christians missionaries often use appeal to greed, hope and fear to convince people to convert. They use threat of hell, reward of heaven, material aid in the form of charity conditional to conversion, etc. They also lie, overstate the historicity of the stories and myth of the Bible; cherry pick verses and moral teachings over less savory ones, etc. I don't think people use critical biblical scholarship to make new converts. Also many people who convert to Christianity are already religious and/or supersticious which means the change doesn't involve a radically different worldview.
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Jesusism is crapping out in the US....


https://www.pewresearch.org/religion/201...2010-2050/


Quote:
  • In the United States, Christians will decline from more than three-quarters of the population in 2010 to two-thirds in 2050, and Judaism will no longer be the largest non-Christian religion. Muslims will be more numerous in the U.S. than people who identify as Jewish on the basis of religion.



I wonder where all the converts that Stevie imagines are coming from?

Quote:
  • Four out of every 10 Christians in the world will live in sub-Saharan Africa.


Oh, yeah.  Well religion thrives where ignorance abounds.
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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Steve, the point is that no one comes to Christianity before hearing about it. No one, completely ignorant of Christianity or any religion, has an experience of Jesus first then tries to find Christian’s to explain his experience. Everyone has already heard at least the basic story before they believe or experience the faith. How long after the Jesus story developed did it take before the first Chinese believed it…or Native American…or Norwegian, etc?
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(04-12-2024, 05:08 AM)airportkid Wrote:
(04-11-2024, 11:43 PM)SteveII Wrote: ... His consistent experience is evidence ...

Like experience, evidence in and of itself is meaningless; it's its interpretation.  Anything and everything is evidence, evidence of what is the pertinent question.

I don't think that is right at all. You seem to be conflating 'facts' with 'evidence'. Evidence refers to pieces of information or facts that help us establish the truth of something. Evidence is not a concrete thing, it is a property of a thing (object, experience or other fact) in relation to a truth claim. It is fundamentally an abstraction. Whether an object, experience, or fact is evidence may rely on some interpretation, but most evidence has intrinsic qualities to it. For example, footprints in the sand may not tell you who walked by, but it surely tells you that somebody walked by.

An experience (consistent or otherwise) on the other hand is a concrete thing that certainly has the property of establishing the truth of something else--in other words, serves as evidence.

Quote:To the believer in a supernatural god, the beauty of a sunset, the symmetry of a daisy, the absence of rain during a Sunday picnic, that Beatrix Lushly in your 11th grade chemistry class said yes to a date is often interpreted as a godly intervention.  But such interpretations are incompetent, mostly because they fail to account for more likely interpretations.

I'm not sure I know any Christians who would say that no rain for the Sunday picnic is evidence of God. At the very least we would be thankful, at most, we might give credit to God for the nice weather in recognition of his ultimate sovereignty of such things, but that it not the same thing as "interpreted as a godly intervention." That implies that there would not have been nice weather except for God's intervention. The nature of such 'miracles' is that there is absolutely no way to know if indeed it was or it was a convenient weather pattern that worked our nicely for the picnic.

Quote:At no time in all human history has anyone indicated, incontestably, that such and such event, feeling or emergence could have only been by divine cause.  It's claimed all the time, but never incontestably.  There are always alternative possible explanations that do not invoke the supernatural.

And that prompts a crucial question:  what have WLC or theists in these threads experienced that is incontestably divine?  What is their god's tangible effect on this earth?  Absent that god, what would this earth look like?  What would this earth look like as indicated by incontestably evaluated evidence?

Should an actual answer emerge, it would be earthshaking, and not hidden in the postings of an internet forum.

In regards to God's tangible effects on Christians who take their faith seriously, in no apparent order: Forgiveness, hope, a changed life (changes in attitudes, desires), the conveniently named Fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control), a presence (supernatural comfort and confidence), guidance, wisdom, humility, compassion for others, and a desire to share their experience. I'm sure I missed some. I don't know what 'incontestable' would even mean for an internal personal experience.  You either believe the person or you don't--its the nature of a personal experience.

Regarding your "Absent that god, what would this earth look like?" Well, starting with the big picture, why would there be anything at all? You have no account of why there is something rather than nothing. You have no account why the reality we have is conducive to the formation of matter let along life. You have no account of how life sprung from non-life. You have no good account of the diversity of life on this planet. And you have no account how consciousness came about. Even if you had an inkling of an account, they wouldn't provide intrinsic value and purpose--an interesting universal desire we all have given that we evolved to simply survive.

But if you mean how would people behave differently, well, the 20th Century would be a good place to start to see what people are capable of when they make themselves to be God. There is a reason Richard Dawkins recently acknowledged he was happy identifying as a cultural Christian, "is at home in the Christian ethos" and it's "a fundamentally decent religion" because it is dawning on him just how much western society owes to the influence of Christianity.
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(04-12-2024, 02:46 PM)epronovost Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 01:51 PM)SteveII Wrote: Your counterpoints as to what other people can be talked into are not quite analogous either. Everything you described takes advantage of a person's greed, while becoming a Christian involves an entire worldview change from top to bottom.

That would also be a composition fallacy. Christians missionaries often use appeal to greed, hope and fear to convince people to convert. They use threat of hell, reward of heaven, material aid in the form of charity conditional to conversion, etc. They also lie, overstate the historicity of the stories and myth of the Bible; cherry pick verses and moral teachings over less savory ones, etc. I don't think people use critical biblical scholarship to make new converts. Also many people who convert to Christianity are already religious and/or supersticious which means the change doesn't involve a radically different worldview.

I am certain now that you don't actually know much about Christianity. You read about and adopted a caricature of it from people who have a bias and an agenda--which you seemed to eagerly lap up. I'm not sure any five consecutive words in that response are accurate.
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(04-12-2024, 05:23 PM)pattylt Wrote: Steve, the point is that no one comes to Christianity before hearing about it.  No one, completely ignorant of Christianity or any religion, has an experience of Jesus first then tries to find Christian’s to explain his experience.  Everyone has already heard at least the basic story before they believe or experience the faith.  How long after the Jesus story developed did it take before the first Chinese believed it…or Native American…or Norwegian, etc?

Except the Muslims having dreams about Jesus...

I'm not sure what the problem is that people have to hear about the "good news" (that's what gospel means) to act on the good news. Why is that bad for me? That just seems to describe the nature of a personal decision that will make a claim on you (requires a response).
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