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God Doesn't Exist

God Doesn't Exist
(04-12-2024, 06:36 PM)SteveII Wrote: 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.

You left out bigotry, jealousy, sanctimony, hypocrisy, uncontrolled rage, vengefulness, unfounded belief, prejudice, greed, and obdurance.

But then I suppose you'd claim those didn't come from a god, only the favorable list did, and are you contending that atheists are incapable of all of those qualities?

As evidence of tangible effects that only a god could produce, that is pathetically infantile.  Can't you do better than that?
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(04-12-2024, 06:36 PM)SteveII Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 05:08 AM)airportkid Wrote: 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.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Archive/Abstract Objects: https://plato.stanford.edu/archivES/FALL...t-objects/
Being told you're delusional does not necessarily mean you're mental. 
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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.

(04-12-2024, 07:15 PM)SteveII Wrote: Except the Muslims having dreams about Jesus...

Probably because Jesus is considered a prophet in Islam.  Muslims living in Western countries would also be inundated by Jesus-talk, the same way that non-believers are constantly hearing Jesus this, Jesus that.  The main difference is that Muslims are already believers, and more likely to buy into a Jesus dream.

For the record, I've never dreamt of Jesus (or any other religious figure, for that matter).
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(04-12-2024, 10:09 PM)Astreja Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 05:23 PM)pattylt Wrote: Steve, the point is that no one comes to Christianity before hearing about it.

(04-12-2024, 07:15 PM)SteveII Wrote: Except the Muslims having dreams about Jesus...

Probably because Jesus is considered a prophet in Islam.  Muslims living in Western countries would also be inundated by Jesus-talk, the same way that non-believers are constantly hearing Jesus this, Jesus that.  The main difference is that Muslims are already believers, and more likely to buy into a Jesus dream.

For the record, I've never dreamt of Jesus (or any other religious figure, for that matter).

There are people who have dreamt of other religious figures than Jesus too. I heard of Christians having visitation from the Egyptian goddess Isis and ditching Christianity in favor of neo-pagan kemetism. Dreams and hallucinations have been found to be very, very strongly culturally influenced and Christianity iconography and mythology is pervasive in pretty much every corner of the world. In late 19th century China there famously was the man who thought he was Jesus' divine brother after having a dream of him while in the midst of a deep depression. His following actions would lead to a rebellion against the Qing emperor that would result in short of 30 million dead people.
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(04-10-2024, 06:24 PM)Minimalist Wrote: People with "theology" degrees are educated in the worthless.  I agree with Dawkins.

Quote:What has theology ever said that is of the smallest use to anybody? When has theology ever said anything that is demonstrably true and is not obvious? I have listened to theologians, read them, debated against them. I have never heard any of them ever say anything of the smallest use, anything that was not either platitudinously obvious or downright false. If all the achievements of scientists were wiped out tomorrow, there would be no doctors but witch doctors, no transport faster than horses, no computers, no printed books, no agriculture beyond subsistence peasant farming. If all the achievements of theologians were wiped out tomorrow, would anyone notice the smallest difference? Even the bad achievements of scientists, the bombs, and sonar-guided whaling vessels work! The achievements of theologians don't do anything, don't affect anything, don't mean anything. What makes anyone think that "theology" is a subject at all?

Richard Dawkins
Apart from comparative religious studies, which can be quite a rigorous and even a useful socialogical discipline when done right, I agree with Dawkins, except that I think he overreaches in saying theology doesn't effect anything. Too many of the bad ideas society is saddled with either originate with or have support from theology. And "oh, the humanity!" -- what could all those theologians have accomplished if they had been scientists instead? Or even bricklayers or ditch diggers, really.
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Quote:Too many of the bad ideas society is saddled with either originate with or have support from theology.


Yup...and you won't overcome that stupidity by studying that shit and pretending it means anything.  To quote George Carlin, "It's all bullshit...and it's bad for you."
Robert G. Ingersoll : “No man with a sense of humor ever founded a religion.”
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(04-12-2024, 08:12 PM)airportkid Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 06:36 PM)SteveII Wrote: 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.

You left out bigotry, jealousy, sanctimony, hypocrisy, uncontrolled rage, vengefulness, unfounded belief, prejudice, greed, and obdurance.

But then I suppose you'd claim those didn't come from a god, only the favorable list did, and are you contending that atheists are incapable of all of those qualities?

As evidence of tangible effects that only a god could produce, that is pathetically infantile.  Can't you do better than that?

The NT teaches quite strenuously against the list you provided. What conclusions could we draw from that?

I contend that supernatural help to live a life full of these things is NOT available to atheists. There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list. There is no existential forgiveness or hope for atheist, there is no supernatural presence to remind you to be better, give you some wisdom, comfort you in time of trials, nor does an atheist come up with the same kind of humility that should be ubiquitous in Christianity due to their foundational beliefs about their undeserved redemption.

But even for the things you should be able to do on your own, I don't know if you are married or not, but it is somewhat analogous. When you are married, the relationship (if healthy) makes you a better person in innumerable ways--especially over time. A relationship with God is much more and so has much more effect. The back and forth makes you a better person.

As to your last comment, it is juvenile and shows a total lack of actual understanding of Christianity (or nuance). You love to rail against a caricature of it. If you want to be part of serious discussions, I would resist the condescension that you don't have the ability to pull off.
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I don't need a fairy to tell me to be nice, and I don't want to date your boyfriend.

I do see an interesting nugget in there, though. The idea that giving someone something undeserved ought to produce humility. Guess your god doesn't know us very well, eh? Turned us into a bunch of whiny entitled little shits.
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(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: The NT teaches quite strenuously against the list you provided. What conclusions could we draw from that?

I contend that supernatural help to live a life full of these things is NOT available to atheists. There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list. There is no existential forgiveness or hope for atheist, there is no supernatural presence to remind you to be better, give you some wisdom, comfort you in time of trials, nor does an atheist come up with the same kind of humility that should be ubiquitous in Christianity due to their foundational beliefs about their undeserved redemption.

But even for the things you should be able to do on your own, I don't know if you are married or not, but it is somewhat analogous. When you are married, the relationship (if healthy) makes you a better person in innumerable ways--especially over time. A relationship with God is much more and so has much more effect. The back and forth makes you a better person.

As to your last comment, it is juvenile and shows a total lack of actual understanding of Christianity (or nuance). You love to rail against a caricature of it. If you want to be part of serious discussions, I would resist the condescension that you don't have the ability to pull off.

Steve has an imaginary 'best friend'. I understand this in children, in adults..... I can only view it as delusion.
Being told you're delusional does not necessarily mean you're mental. 
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William Lame Craig is a charlatan conman, and little stevie boy is a gutless moron, a match made in heaven, so to speak.




(and when little stevie boy mentions its "wife", it means the blow up doll of the week)
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(04-14-2024, 01:16 PM)brewerb Wrote:
(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: The NT teaches quite strenuously against the list you provided. What conclusions could we draw from that?

I contend that supernatural help to live a life full of these things is NOT available to atheists. There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list. There is no existential forgiveness or hope for atheist, there is no supernatural presence to remind you to be better, give you some wisdom, comfort you in time of trials, nor does an atheist come up with the same kind of humility that should be ubiquitous in Christianity due to their foundational beliefs about their undeserved redemption.

But even for the things you should be able to do on your own, I don't know if you are married or not, but it is somewhat analogous. When you are married, the relationship (if healthy) makes you a better person in innumerable ways--especially over time. A relationship with God is much more and so has much more effect. The back and forth makes you a better person.

As to your last comment, it is juvenile and shows a total lack of actual understanding of Christianity (or nuance). You love to rail against a caricature of it. If you want to be part of serious discussions, I would resist the condescension that you don't have the ability to pull off.

Steve has an imaginary 'best friend'. I understand this in children, in adults..... I can only view it as delusion.

Relationship with god = utter BS
Back and forth = nonsense
Better person: How bad of a person has Steve been before he bought the inhumane crap of "slavery was a safety net back in antiquity". I mean, what kind of asshole must he have been before he started pissing on the grave of every single slave in history, while wearing that fake face of humility?
R.I.P. Hannes
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(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: I contend that supernatural help to live a life full of these things is NOT available to atheists. 

This is almost a tautology. Atheism is basically a rejection of the supernatural. Maybe there are atheists who believe in other supernatural beings or something? But if you're looking to a supernatural being as a guide to leading a better life, that pretty much sounds like you're looking to a deity of some kind.

(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list. There is no existential forgiveness or hope for atheist,

Forgiveness can be self-generated -- forgiving yourself is a very hard and very important thing to do. Or it comes from the people you've transgressed against. There's no need for a supernatural source.

And I am hopeful. Even existentially so. I am an individual, responsible for myself and my actions, determining what I do in the world. That includes the attitude with which I approach it.
Forgiveness comes from yourself and from other people, so while it cannot be self-generated

(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote:  there is no supernatural presence to remind you to be better, give you some wisdom, comfort you in time of trials, nor does an atheist come up with the same kind of humility that should be ubiquitous in Christianity due to their foundational beliefs about their undeserved redemption.

Maybe it should be ubiquitous, but humility is not exactly the first thing that comes to mind when I think of Christianity. All of the things you describe can come from religion, in a healthy person, or can come from philosophy, music, poetry, or the world itself. Walt Whitman got it from Brooklyn. Thoreau got it from the woods. Those are characteristics of a good person, not a religious person.


(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: You love to rail against a caricature of it. If you want to be part of serious discussions, I would resist the condescension that you don't have the ability to pull off.

I can't speak for anyone else, and I try not to rant. But when I talk about Christianity I am speaking from lived trauma (being raised Catholic) and a lifetime of struggling against extremists, bigots and racists all claiming to be acting in the name of the Christian god. Not every Christian is like that, certainly, any more than every Muslim is a fundamentalist. But especially in the United States, Christianity as a whole has not been a force for good.
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(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: The NT teaches quite strenuously against the list you provided. What conclusions could we draw from that?

That the Bible, including the NT, is not univocal nor does it provide a very solid framework to cultivate those traits in its believers which would explain that despite these elements being central to Christian doctrines, Christians themselves, especially the most fundamentalist Christians, fail to espouse those values to a greater degree than any other random person. Is it a bit weird Christians are no better than the average person when it comes down to doing what the NT strenuously teaches against?

Quote:There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list.

Can you name one and then explain how a person could not self generate such thing?

Quote:As to your last comment, it is juvenile and shows a total lack of actual understanding of Christianity (or nuance). You love to rail against a caricature of it.

Would you care to explain why you reject in such a cavalier way the experience we have with Christians, including yourself Steve, when it comes down to bigotry, vanity, egotism, etc? It seems you refuse to acknowledge that we, atheists, might have any living experience with Christians, including Christians missionary work; that non of us might be former Christians, that non of us have Christians relative, acquaintances, spouses or friends. Is it not the picture perfect definition of bigotry and arrogance, which are grave sins against which the New Testament strenuously oppose, to dismiss such experience as ''juvenile, lacking in nuance, understanding'' or railing against a caricature? Is it not a lie juvenile and lacking in nuance from yourself to dismiss the experiences and knowledge of others as contemptible?
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(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: I contend that supernatural help to live a life full of these things is NOT available to atheists. There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list. There is no existential forgiveness or hope for atheist, there is no supernatural presence to remind you to be better, give you some wisdom, comfort you in time of trials, nor does an atheist come up with the same kind of humility that should be ubiquitous in Christianity due to their foundational beliefs about their undeserved redemption.

People in other religions have their laundry list of things that they supposedly can only get from their god. Somebody is fooling themselves about where these things are coming from. I think you seriously underestimate human nature. Regardless, if God doesn't exist, then you are in fact providing it for yourself and it is also available to the atheist. I think you simply lack the imagination and experience to realize atheist equivalents. You regularly rail against people who are ignorant of your beliefs criticizing and impeaching them, perhaps you should practice what you preach and realize that your understanding of what it means to be an atheist is likewise uninformed.
Mountain-high though the difficulties appear, terrible and gloomy though all things seem, they are but Mâyâ.
Fear not — it is banished. Crush it, and it vanishes. Stamp upon it, and it dies.


Vivekananda
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(04-12-2024, 08:56 PM)brewerb Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 06:36 PM)SteveII Wrote: 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.


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.


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.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Archive/Abstract Objects: https://plato.stanford.edu/archivES/FALL...t-objects/

I'm not fond of stand-alone links. It feels like homework and I'm kind of busy these days (taxes and gardening). Perhaps in future posts, you might summarize your own thoughts on the subject (for the benefit of readers) along with the link (for further reading). Just a thought...
Never argue with people who type fast and have too much time on their hands...
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(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 08:12 PM)airportkid Wrote: You left out bigotry, jealousy, sanctimony, hypocrisy, uncontrolled rage, vengefulness, unfounded belief, prejudice, greed, and obdurance.

But then I suppose you'd claim those didn't come from a god, only the favorable list did, and are you contending that atheists are incapable of all of those qualities?

As evidence of tangible effects that only a god could produce, that is pathetically infantile.  Can't you do better than that?

The NT teaches quite strenuously against the list you provided. What conclusions could we draw from that?

That you can talk the talk but can't walk the walk.
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(04-12-2024, 10:16 PM)epronovost Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 10:09 PM)Astreja Wrote: Probably because Jesus is considered a prophet in Islam.  Muslims living in Western countries would also be inundated by Jesus-talk, the same way that non-believers are constantly hearing Jesus this, Jesus that.  The main difference is that Muslims are already believers, and more likely to buy into a Jesus dream.

For the record, I've never dreamt of Jesus (or any other religious figure, for that matter).

There are people who have dreamt of other religious figures than Jesus too. I heard of Christians having visitation from the Egyptian goddess Isis and ditching Christianity in favor of neo-pagan kemetism. Dreams and hallucinations have been found to be very, very strongly culturally influenced and Christianity iconography and mythology is pervasive in pretty much every corner of the world. In late 19th century China there famously was the man who thought he was Jesus' divine brother after having a dream of him while in the midst of a deep depression. His following actions would lead to a rebellion against the Qing emperor that would result in short of 30 million dead people.

The number of "messiahs" are like the fish in the sea. So many, but so few last long. It isn't the particular beliefs of any theist that bothers me. It is the unquestioning acceptence of nonfactual belief in general that makes me worry about their sanity.
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(04-14-2024, 06:13 PM)Cavebear Wrote:
(04-12-2024, 08:56 PM)brewerb Wrote: Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Archive/Abstract Objects: https://plato.stanford.edu/archivES/FALL...t-objects/

I'm not fond of stand-alone links.  It feels like homework and I'm kind of busy these days (taxes and gardening).  Perhaps in future posts, you might summarize your own thoughts on the subject (for the benefit of readers) along with the link (for further reading).  Just a thought...

Perhaps in the future when it's only a link you can ignore and maybe not click on the link. Just a thought.........
Being told you're delusional does not necessarily mean you're mental. 
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(04-14-2024, 07:58 PM)brewerb Wrote:
(04-14-2024, 06:13 PM)Cavebear Wrote: I'm not fond of stand-alone links.  It feels like homework and I'm kind of busy these days (taxes and gardening).  Perhaps in future posts, you might summarize your own thoughts on the subject (for the benefit of readers) along with the link (for further reading).  Just a thought...

Perhaps in the future when it's only a link you can ignore and maybe not click on the link. Just a thought.........

OK, I wasn't trying to be mean.  Just saying that I look forward to some thoughts more than I do links.  Google gives me links.  I just value the interpretation of facts and someones discussion of them more.

I was on a forum once where everybody argued using links to long articles.  As if I was going to read a 10 page argument by someone else in every post.  If a link explains a complicated detail in a discussion, that is good (for those who want more detail).  But I sort of got turned off by naked links without the poster discussing it at least "some"..  And that is why I said "just a thought".

We're OK...
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(04-14-2024, 01:16 PM)brewerb Wrote:
(04-14-2024, 11:13 AM)SteveII Wrote: The NT teaches quite strenuously against the list you provided. What conclusions could we draw from that?

I contend that supernatural help to live a life full of these things is NOT available to atheists. There are many things on that list that cannot be self-generated--so you cherry-picked the list. There is no existential forgiveness or hope for atheist, there is no supernatural presence to remind you to be better, give you some wisdom, comfort you in time of trials, nor does an atheist come up with the same kind of humility that should be ubiquitous in Christianity due to their foundational beliefs about their undeserved redemption.

But even for the things you should be able to do on your own, I don't know if you are married or not, but it is somewhat analogous. When you are married, the relationship (if healthy) makes you a better person in innumerable ways--especially over time. A relationship with God is much more and so has much more effect. The back and forth makes you a better person.

As to your last comment, it is juvenile and shows a total lack of actual understanding of Christianity (or nuance). You love to rail against a caricature of it. If you want to be part of serious discussions, I would resist the condescension that you don't have the ability to pull off.

Steve has an imaginary 'best friend'. I understand this in children, in adults..... I can only view it as delusion.

That can be blamed on that Xian training tool known as Santa.
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(04-14-2024, 09:48 PM)1Sam15 Wrote:
(04-14-2024, 01:16 PM)brewerb Wrote: Steve has an imaginary 'best friend'. I understand this in children, in adults..... I can only view it as delusion.

That can be blamed on that Xian training tool known as Santa.

Don't leave out 'Now I lay me down to sleep,...............' Very creepy. Can't believe my parents thought it was a good thing.
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For some children, Santa and the Easter Bunny are training for God-beliefs. For others, they are ways to understand how to escape make-beliefs and superstition.

For me, that came early. Without any push from my parents, I realized Santa couldn't be real, and that carried forward to any deity.

Which didn't stop me from helping Mom and Dad wrap Christmas presents for the younger siblings or help at hiding hard-boiled eggs under couch-cushions. It was a fun cultural thing. But I also always knew it was fake... Wink
Never argue with people who type fast and have too much time on their hands...
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God Doesn't Exist
Same here but my parent told me I’m like a grown up now and we need to keep pretending (lying) to my younger brother.

More training in lying.
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  • pattylt
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God Doesn't Exist
(04-12-2024, 01:28 AM)SteveII Wrote:
(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.

Every person who grows up in western culture grows up bathed in christer iconography and inundated with christer talking points, you simpleton. Then, some asshole, proselytizing jerk-wad comes banging on their front door with their version of the good news. That's how millions get converted.

Steve, you are a fucking tool!
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God Doesn't Exist
Kaboom!

Bravo TGB
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