Question about Christians and evolution

A letter from Linda W

I am an ex-Christian; my brother is a fundamentalist Christian.

We were discussing evolution again...

He believes that animals evolved, but humans did not -- they were created. So, he believes in evolution, just not for people.

I had never heard this viewpoint before and I thought I had heard them all.

Is the new way for fundamentalist Christians to accept the fact of evolution, but just not for people?

Has anyone else ever heard this explanation?

88 comments:

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...

Well, animals would have had to evolve, since there are some that eat only meat - carnivores, and eating meat implies that the hunted is killed, and remember death didn't exist in the garden of eden, so they would have evolved into the meat eaters that they are now. LOL I am being sarcastic of course. That would be the only reason way a fundy would believe in evolution. Imagine sharks that ate sea cucumbers! Why would they need all those very pointy teeth? LOL. Even when they try to make sense, their logic is laughable.

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...

Could you imagine how freaked out adam and eve must've been when they noticed their little pet kittens that ate cabbages and the like turned into tigers and started eating sheep?! Right before their very eyes! POOF! little snowball turned into a blood thristy killing machine.

Michael Rudas said...

There are easy ways to torpedo such nonsense. One way is to point out that we share over 98% of our DNA with chimpanzees, our closest living relative -- but that's not the clincher.

The clincher is than unlike nearly every other mammal (with the exception of the guinea pig), the higher primates cannot produce their own ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). If a squirrel doesn't get enough Vitamin C in its diet, no problem -- but if the same thing happens to a gorilla or human, the result is scurvy (Vitamin C deficiency disease) -- humans, gorilla, and chimpanzees (as examples) lack a key enzyme for ascorbic acid synthesis. Details at
http://preview.tinyurl.com/5jllsa -- admittedly, the article is a bit technical (but interesting).

I suppose that one could deny the importance of these facts, but combine them and it's way past coincidence.

~~ Mikey

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...

One more thing just occured to me...isn't the popular theory of evolution one that has upright humans developing FROM a common animal ancestor? Doesn't that imply that animals came before upright man? So if animals do evolve as your brother states, he might as well agree with the scientific theory. Sounds like he is on the fence and not necesarrily as fundamental as he thinks he is. Might as well try to explain to him that "upright man" has plateaued in his evolution, and that yes, animals did evolve...and man is the result.

TheJaytheist said...

"He believes that animals evolved, but humans did not -- they were created."

I've been discussing this issue with a guy at work that said this same thing.

It's a logical fallacy called special pleading.

Retroviral DNA evidence suggests we share common ancestry with chimps.

Thanks to michael for the vitamin C info. I'm not rying to change this guy's mind but it's best to have a well thought out argument for your position on hand.

You should have seen his face when he tried to use pascal's wager on me. His smile dropped like a rock when I explained the problems with it.

webmdave said...

The Catholic Church has come up with an interesting middle-ground regarding the science of evolution:

"Concerning human evolution, the Church has a more definite teaching. It allows for the possibility that man’s body developed from previous biological forms, under God’s guidance, but it insists on the special creation of his soul. Pope Pius XII declared that "the teaching authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions . . . take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter—[but] the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God" (Pius XII, Humani Generis 36). So whether the human body was specially created or developed, we are required to hold as a matter of Catholic faith that the human soul is specially created; it did not evolve, and it is not inherited from our parents, as our bodies are." -- ref

AIGBusted said...

I believe that is the view which Muslims take, although I'm not sure.

Maybe you should introduce him to the ERVs:
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/section4.html#retroviruses

That may convince him. You should also check out my website "Answers in Genesis Busted":
http://www.aigbusted.com

It may be useful to you in debates with creationists.

-Ryan

SlowAndSteady said...

Perhaps I should not be allowed to post here. I do not despise anyone who holds the positions, contrary to mine, that there is no God, life after death, et. al.. On the contrary, I have the deepest respect for their honesty, deepest respect for them personally, but also the deepest regret they have come to those conclusions. So, you know my intention will be to challenge those beliefs.
I would like to hear your comments first before, if I am allowed to, I continue posting.

Lance said...

Dear SlowAndSteady,

Go ahead and post with a couple of conditions.

1. Realize that we are Ex-Christians, and have heard, and sometimes preached, all the standard arguments, so don't think about us as people that don't understand Christianity or the bible. We do!

2. Don't get all preachy on us, as it will just piss us off, and people will go at you with both barrels blazing. It won't be pretty.

3. Don't quote the bible. We know the bible very well and we don't believe it is the inspired word of god. It is just a book written by men, so quoting it does not work for us.

4. Use logic and reason. That is all that will work here. Appeals to faith don't substitute for evidence.

5. Expect some people here to treat you with disdain and anger. This is our site and we don't tolerate people insulting our intelligence. Many of us are still very pissed at the religion that wasted so much of our lives.

6. Ask questions to try and understand our positions. Don't try to re-convert us.

That last one is really the bottom line. If you want to have a conversation in order to understand who we are (we are not all the same obviously) and how we got to where we are, then feel free to ask some questions, and then LISTEN!

Many of us spent decades as Christians. We have heard all the arguments and there is nothing you can say to bring us back. If your goal is to re-convert us, then don't waste your breath.

But please feel free to really try to understand what made us reject your religion. From your original question, I think you may be the type of person that can do this.

Peace.

- Lance

boomSLANG said...

S & S...So, you know my intention will be to challenge those beliefs

Yes, by all means!....challenge, away. Of course, you're off to a bad start when you imply that the absence of belief in something is a "belief". Bearing that in mind, please also bear in mind the following points, as well:

- Many of us, including myself, will not accept any type of revealed knowledge(i.e..religious documents, etc) as "evidence" for anything.

- Many of us, myself included, will not accept anecdotal testimony as evidence for anything. For instance, evidences such as NDE's, as evidence for a post-mortem existence(afterlife).

- Many of us, myself included, will not accept "GOD DID IT!" as evidence, in lieu of simply pleading ignorance on any given subject. For instance, since we don't know the origins of the Universe with absolute certainty, etc... "GOD DID IT!" is not acceptable "evidence"; it is a non-answer, in fact.

- And finally, many of us, myself included, will not accept "Creationism" as the default "truth", if one should manage to find gaps in the Theory, and fact, of Evolution.


Good luck, and may the most reasonable man win!

TheJaytheist said...

S&S, please continue, this may be interesting. However, if you don't understand why we won't accept revealed knowledge, anectodal testimony, or GODIDIT! as an answer, ask us to explain why, before implying that our minds are closed.

That being said...let 'er rip!

SlowAndSteady said...

Thanks for the responses, and, without difficulty, I agree to the "rules".
I will be away for the next couple of days, but I look forward to getting back to listening in this discussion.

Hells Bells said...

To answer the original question, yes I have heard that proposal before.

So, my new response is, so man is the one that sinned? (usually get an affirmative) Therefore the punishment for man's sin was that the whole of creation was now subject to death? (usually get an affirmative) So how come all the creatures that evolved before man came on the scene died, in some case many hundreds of millions of years before? (so far, only stunned silence)

Yet more evidence that the church has invented a monster - either the Christian story is true but God knew man would sin and therefore subject all of creation to the sentence before the crime had been committed, or the Christian story is not true and death is not a penalty for sin (irrespective of whether God exists or not).

Yukkione said...

I'ce heard this stance before and it's as ignorant as any creation myth. Next time you talk to your brother ask him why humans share retroviral DNA with higher apes. (in other words, broken viral remnants from our ancient history that continue to be handed down via sex) We share them in the exact same position in the primate DNA helix. The only way this can happen is because we have a common ancestor. One of many proofs of our evolution.

freeman said...

According to the bible, god only created the jewish people. His choosen ones. All other people came from the land of Nod, east of Eden. I take this to mean that only the choosen ones were created and the rest of us evolved! lol

So if you are not of jewish ancestry, then you evolved!

As an atheist, I do not think that the jewish people were created either.

freedy said...

What's up freeman,long time no post.Good point concerning the Jews.

Maybe they were the first to evolve,thus god chose them.What a bunch of crap!---peace freedy

freeman said...

Lurking in the background. I grow tired of the lambs! lol

I have been busy with a new job that does not allow their computers to be used for anything other than work. And as I have had more time at home, I have been catching up on the "honeydo list". URGH!

I read and have been in the forums section than here. Still I lurk and pounce every now and again.

Glad to see your still around freedy. peace

freedy said...

freeman,yea I like to roar and scratch at the sheeple every once in awhile.

Good to hear from you again.

Jerpoint said...

I work in an engineering field. I have often encountered this view of evolution among religious believers.

Usually, the individual has a back-ground in science or engineering that makes a literal interpretation of the bible difficult or impossible. It is usually the age of the earth or the universe that forces them to revise their views.

They tend to be more interesting in a discussion than biblical literalist. They have two different groups of people in their life, so they constantly have to fight a battle on two fronts. They have to answer detailed criticism from technically-minded friends, but they also have to justify their deviation of faith to the members their church community.

Sometimes, I find that these individuals are genuinely conflicted. They may not be comfortable discussing it.

Lance said...

Hi Jerpoint,
I'm one of those engineers that was very conflicted about trying to rationalize my Christianity with my old earth views.

I was able to do this in the San Francisco Bay Area, where many liberal or moderate Christians balance these views. It wasn't until I moved to Central Oregon where I was faced with so many young earth fundamentalists that I was forced to resolve this conflict.

Happily now the conflict is resolved, my Christianity is completely gone, and my mind no longer needs to make sense of the craziness.

Reality is a wonderful thing.

- Lance

AtheistToothFairy said...

Jerpoint wrote:
Usually, the individual has a back-ground in science or engineering that makes a literal interpretation of the bible difficult or impossible. It is usually the age of the earth or the universe that forces them to revise their views
---
Jerpoint,
Very interesting observation here !!

Going back two decades ago, at a time in my life where I was still sure god had created all life on this planet (directly), it was EASY to ignore the mounting evidence for things like evolution, and find faults with the accuracy of things like carbon dating.

There was no internet back then that one could [EASILY] jump on to do research on such topics, and when one is cozy in their beliefs of god, why would one take the trouble to go to a library and find books that counter one's desired belief system, right.

Unlike in today's world, most folks (at least in my area) didn't have much knowledge about things like evolution and so there was always a minimal challenge to counter one's belief in the unbelievable.

Today (in my area), to bring up religious beliefs/dogma in a professional workplace is a rare occasion (being an unspoken rule of sorts). Because of this, I really never get to find out how college educated xtian (technical) coworkers might reconcile the bible with our modern day knowledge, but I am curious to see how most would attempt that.

Surely something would have to 'give' in such an attempt. Either one has to take some of the bible far less literally, or one has to find fault with the branches of science that contradict the bible dogma.
Oddly enough, those who find fault with the branches of science that contradict the bible, have little problem with the parts of science that benefit their health and daily lives.

Good subject and I'd like to see more about how technical minded xtians who are also bible literalist, manage to reconcile the huge problems between science and god's word.


ATF (Who long ago used to fight against evolution, and had no idea at the time, how naive he was in doing so)

SlowAndSteady said...

I'm trying to understand why someone would have anger towards me if I had done nothing wrong to them. I can understand why someone would be angry if there is pin-headed stupidity directed at them in the name of any religion. But to condemn all who hold the beliefs of that religion is like being angry at a voter because a politician lied to them.
I would like to know what was said or done to cause offense but I would like the same consideration.
To continue the analogy, ask me if I agree with the politician's actions.
Next, do I espouse the same party platforms, etc.
But to condemn every voter and the entire electoral and democratic system because of stupid, greedy, insensitive politicians does not make sense, even if there seems to be no lack of them.
Ditto for greedy, stupid, insensitive, and on and on, xtians.

freeman said...

Slow and Steady,
but also the deepest regret they have come to those conclusions. So, you know my intention will be to challenge those beliefs.

Sounds rather confrontational, doesn't it?

Please refer to boomslang's comment, it rather puts things in perspective.

boomSLANG said...

S & S...I'm trying to understand why someone would have anger towards me if I had done nothing wrong to them.

Dear S & S,

It's quite possible that you are new to the blogging world, and if that is the case, you should be "tipped-off" that addressing the person to whom you are directing your comments to, greatly fascilitates the discussion, which includes, avoiding confusion.

I reviewed my post addressed to you, and I see nothing that would indicate I have anger towards you, personally. However, I should probably add, that you came here, and normally, I see that, alone, as an implicit challenge, taking into consideration the name of the website...e.g.."Exchristian net". Hello?

So, on top of the implicit challenge, you have also been explicit in telling us your intentions for being here....

S & S: "So, you know my intention will be to challenge those [non-beliefs]."

Bring it.

SlowAndSteady said...

Boomslang, since this was originally about evolution, I have a question for you, or anyone, centerd on the first appearance of life, presumed to be a single cell.
Since we know the first life form has long since passed on, the assumption is that this first life form come already equipped with the ability to reproduce itself.
Can you explain that process?

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...

Reproduction of the original copy may very well have been the result of a mutation caused by the environment [that is if your assumtion is that there was only one single cell of one type]- but that also doesn't mean that there weren't trillions of that type of that cell which could explain a kind of mutation by converging with each other too.

SlowAndSteady said...

stephen_richard_webb said:
"[that is if your assumtion is that there was only one single cell of one type]"

Since my cells are supposed to be derived from that one source cell, then I'm talking about that one cell which eventually lead to me. If there was any death in between that one cell, regardless of any supposed merging with other cells, I would not be here, writing this.

"which could explain a kind of mutation by converging with each other too."

Could you please explain this merging process, as it occurred after the first life form existed, and, also, how long did this first life form exist before it mutated or merged, and then died?

webmdave said...

S&S:

Excuse me for butting in.

Here's my answer to your line of questioning: I don't know.

So what?

The fact is, no one knows exactly how or when life began. Once upon a time, lightening, earthquakes, meteors, eclipses, sicknesses, etc., were all beyond the scope of human knowledge. In more ignorant times, all those forces of nature were deified in one way or another. Not satisfied with ignorance and unable to tear away the veil of ignorance, people attributed the unknown to the gods.

That’s all you are doing here. Just because the genesis of life remains a mystery, that doesn’t lend any credence to the idea that an unexplainable, immaterial, metaphysical entity started it up. Besides, if your deity did do it, how did she do it? Please explain the process that your goddess used to stimulate the first life form? First, of course, you’ll have to demonstrate that your goddess exists.

If an answer to a big question is “I don’t know” or “I can’t imagine how it could happen naturally,” then the default solution to the problem is not “See, my religious belief is true!”

I hope you see the point. No matter how successful you are in throwing doubt on modern scientific theories, you are still no closer providing objective evidence that your goddess exists, that she created life, and that she interacts on a regular basis with anyone or anything.

Besides, if life demands a supernatural creator, then wouldn’t a supernatural creator also need a super-duper-natural creator? I assume the creator is technically alive, in your mind. If there is even one life form that can be shown to be self existent (as in the case of your goddess), then you’ve equivocated on your position. If no life forms can exist without being supernaturally created, then your goddess is not a life form, and therefore not alive. If you want to say that your goddess is some sort of non-alive energy force that stimulates variety in the universe, well, that’s as reasonable as any answer in a sea of ignorance. How about ancient astronauts? Maybe super-intelligent travelers from another galaxy seeded this planet with life. Of course, how they came to be would be a question. Or how about this: A trillion tiny self-existent gods merged their energies for one explosive creative act that generated life.

See how the imagination runs where ignorance reigns?

We are ignorant to our genesis. We may always be ignorant of it. However, until objective evidence can be presented that one of the myriad creation myths are true, then I’ll continue to be a skeptic who can admit that at times I don’t know.

muttmutt said...

I liken a fundamentalist christian to Venom the black spiderman. Venom becomes such a part of spiderman, that spiderman and the venom are indistinguishable from one another. That's the best analogy i can come up with for not liking christians and thier religion both. As for evolution, there is documented evidence proving it: the monkey throwing the spear and the four legged duck. there may be more instances besides this, but two is good enough for the moment.

SlowAndSteady said...

webmdave:
Thanks for joining in, rather than "butting in".
I don't know if you have made the conclusion that evolution is a fact, however, I have a problem with the statement that evolution is a fact when it is based on such a huge unknown as the origin of life.
To answer the question, "Who cares?", I would say Darwin and all those who took a hand in explaining the theory to me in school.
Yes, the explanation, "I don't know" is a good one, and a bold one. I hope I can follow the example.
To answer some of your other questions, first, let me say that, yes, there are a great many hypotheses that could explain life's origins, however, when there are great numbers of people that arrive at very similar conclusions, then that hypothesis could be looked at more closely. That does not say that they are right, but it does say the similarities can't be ignored. If there are very few similarities in the belief, say, that a trillion tiny gods merged, then, although not discounting it, that would not lend itself to believability.
I will respond further when time allows.

webmdave said...

S&S:

Evolution is a fact. It is as much a fact as is the theory of gravity.

What you are quibling about is abiogenesis.

Evolution and abiogenesis are two different fields of study that are frequently confused by Christian apologetics.

Regardless, I don't know is not a bold answer, it is just plain honest. Even if I studied the science of evolution in depth, I doubt I possess the comprehensive skills, the patience, or the interest necessary to fully fathom the science. Then again, I don’t care much about atomic theory, algorithmic information theory, critical pedagogy theory, the theory of relativity, quantum field theory, systems theory, critical theory, or literary theory. In fact, about the only theory that has ever really set my wheels to turning has been music theory.

However, since you seem obsessed by the theory of evolution, perhaps you could cast some light on your expertise in the matter. I would expect that you have studied the science in depth and have come to the conclusion that the theory of evolution is flawed based on that extensive study. In light of your confusing evolution with abiogenesis, however, it appears likely that you’ve not studied at all.

Even so, regardless of the accuracy or inaccuracy of any scientific theories, those theories have no relation to providing objective evidence for your invisible friend. Consider this: If I manage to fill your mind with enough doubt as to the existence of your god, does that now by default make evolution true? Of course not! Objective evidence in support of these different ideas is what is required. Casting doubt on religion beliefs doesn’t bolster a scientific theory and casting doubt on a scientific theory doesn’t validate a religious belief.

There have been many thousands of people who have believed all sorts of nonsense since history began. Besides, every new religious cult on the planet starts out with only a few individuals. Surely you wouldn't posit that the majority opinion on truth wins, especially in light of the humble beginnings of Christianity. I mean, think about it... The majority of the world has never been Christian. And even in Christendom, there is not real unity. Christianity is splintered into a thousand camps, each calling the other heretic.

You are aware that the Catholic Church, the largest segment of Christianity, teaches evolution, aren’t you?

Be careful that you don't find yourself in the same state as Luther and Calvin, who condemned Copernicus for teaching that the Sun was the center of the solar system rather than the Earth. After all, the said, Joshua commanded the Sun to stand still; he didn't command the Earth to stop rotating.

boomSLANG said...

S & S....Boomslang, since this was originally about evolution, I have a question for you, or anyone, centerd on the first appearance of life, presumed to be a single cell.
Since we know the first life form has long since passed on, the assumption is that this first life form come already equipped with the ability to reproduce itself.
Can you explain that process?


Dear S & S,

You have been very forthright in stating your purpose for being here: To challenge our beliefs[non-belief]

Well, for me personally, you will not reconvert me to Theism, nor to any of its by-products, including "Creationism", by thinking that if you shoot enough holes in the Theory of Evolution - or, if you get me to say "I don't know" how the first cell reproduced - that that will make your magical worldview "true", by default. As Webmdave pointed out...logic doesn't work that way.

Best,

SlowAndSteady said...

webmdave wrote:"S&S:Evolution is a fact. It is as much a fact as is the theory of gravity."

(I'll address only a couple of points at a time and leave the rest for later)

It is up to you to accept it as fact, but, why such desperation to do that? Everyone has the right to choose this for themselves and not to be shamed into it. I'm not saying you use this tactic, however, ridicule has been used to convince me of the veracity of the claim. Furthermore, the second step, cell division, in the theory cannot be satisfactorily explained, nor can the enormity of the leap from life to reproduction be shown to be appreciated by those who share the theory with me. Consequently, I conclude there is too little real science here to make it believable to me, personally.

webmdave: "What you are quibling about is abiogenesis."

I looked up that word and found that, contemporaneously with Darwin, there was the notion that life spontaneously existed. For instance, maggots, it was assumed, sprang to life just out of the blue if there was rotten meat around. They did not have a clue that maggots were the result of eggs laid by flies. So, Darwin probably was not daunted by the fact that the step from a non-life form to life-form was of any major consequence. It was just assumed to be the case. Science, with some difficulty it seems, according to the article, has moved on from that, but the theory has been held tenaciously and I suspect that is because of the fear of science losing out in the ages old battle of religion versus science. Unlike yourself, many people I have talked to refuse to believe in God simply because of the theory of evolution. My own father was among them. He did not have any understanding of the theory, yet jumped to it to save himself from getting tricked into living forever, in a wonderful place without having to do a thing to deserve it. Pretty scary stuff. Can't blame him for that.

webmdave: "Regardless, I don't know is not a bold answer, it is just plain honest. Even if I studied the science of evolution in depth..."

I'll stick with my claim that it was a bold statement. Honest as well.
Ok. So, you're asking me if I've studied it in depth, yet, by our own admission, you have not done that yourself, and you are instructing me in this? No, I have no light to shed on this theory, just an observation that those that hold the theory to be true have ignored the fact that going from step one, a life form, to step two, cell division and reproduction, is an unbelievably astounding step. Is it not?

I will have to get back to work at hand before I address the rest of your post.

Thanks, all, for continuing to allow me to post in this forum.

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...

Something that I don't get concerning fundamental christianities opposition of macroevolution is that there doctrine proposes an even greater jump than that of the sciences - dirt -> man = macroevolution in a major way. Yet they say that macroevolution is not possible, that ONLY microevolution occurs. Doesn't make sense.

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SlowAndSteady said...

How about a time out for a little humour?

A wealthy old Gentleman decides to go on a hunting safari in Africa , taking his faithful, elderly Jack Russell named Killer, along for the company.

One day the old Jack Russell starts chasing rabbits and before long, discovers that he's lost. Wandering about, he notices a leopard heading rapidly in his direction with the intention of having lunch.

The old Jack Russell thinks, "Oh, oh! I'm in deep doo-doo now!" Noticing some bones on the ground close by, he immediately settles down to chew on the bones with his back to the approaching cat. Just as the leopard is about to leap, the old Jack Russell exclaims loudly, "Boy, that was one delicious leopard! I wonder if there are any more around here?"

Hearing this, the young leopard halts his attack in mid-strike, a look of terror comes over him and he slinks away into the trees. "Whew!", says the leopard, "That was close! That old Jack Russell nearly had me!"

Meanwhile, a monkey who had been watching the whole scene from a nearby tree, figures he can put this knowledge to good use and trade it for protection from the leopard. So off he goes, but the old Jack Russell sees him heading after the leopard with great speed, and figures that something must be up.

The monkey soon catches up with the leopard, spills the beans and strikes a deal for himself with the leopard.

The young leopard is furious at being made a fool of and says, "Here, monkey, hop on my back and see what's going to happen to that conniving canine!

Now, the old Jack Russell sees the leopard coming with the monkey on his back and thinks, "What am I going to do now?", but instead of running, the dog sits down with his back to his attackers, pretending he hasn't seen them yet, and just when they get close enough to hear, the old Jack Russell says, "Where's that damn monkey? I sent him off an hour ago to bring me another leopard!”

Moral of this story....

Don't mess with the old dogs...age and skill will always overcome youth and treachery! BS and brilliance only come with age and experience.

boomSLANG said...

S & S...... but the theory has been held tenaciously and I suspect that is because of the fear of science losing out in the ages old battle of religion versus science.

Fear of science losing-out to religion? Good grief!...you weren't kidding when you said it was time for a little humor, were you?

Okay, firstly, as pointed out to you previously, the subject of how life evolved is a separate subject, and thus, a separate discussion from how life came about, which is the field of abiogenesis. Yes, this thread is about evolution, I'm perfectly aware of that. So then, if you would, please stop harping on, quote:

- "non-life form to life-form"

Secondly, you are employing the very argument that some of us admonished you to NOT use, and that, for your review, is that attempting to shoot holes in the current leading scientifically-based hypothesis for the origins of life...i.e Abiogenesis, or, the current leading scientifically-based theory for how life evolved..i.e..the theory of Evolution, will NOT make a "supernatural" explanation a plausible alternative, in either case, by default. Again, see non-sequitur.(logical fallacy)

godsfavoritecolor said...

S&S, I have been following this discussion and methinks you protest too much about your reasonableness. And what about your humorous anecdote? Is it a subtle threat that we are in danger messing around with a sly old dog like you?

Methinks also that you might be a creationist troll.

I know only the basics of evolution. The regular Ex-Christians here know more than I do, but they are probably not experts. You, on the other hand, seem to know nothing but creationist dogma and fallacies. I suggest you go to some scientific websites on basic evolution and try to understand (if you are capable and willing) their scientific explanations before you come here to preach creationism. I suggest you start with this site,
http://www.genotypebyenvironment.org/
and other web sites by Dr. Massimo Pigliucci or Google “basic evolution.” Avoid the religious, creationist sites.

When you have your PhD in Creation Science (lol) then go debate Dr. Pigliucci.

webmdave said...

S&S:

Please don't waste your time addressing the rest of my comment to you, unless of course you intend on being entertaining.

Why?

Well, since you clearly demonstrated that you haven't EVER seriously studied any of the bio-sciences and fully admitted that you had to "look up" the meaning of abiogenesis, it is fairly obvious to me that we have nothing meaningful to exchange in this discussion. What in the world could two science ignoramuses possible learn from each other?

In the meantime, get this through your thick skull: When it comes to talking about a mythological daemon that pooped out a man and woman after ingesting a metaphysical depilatory (KJV play on the word “dirt”), it’s irrelevant whether ANY or ALL scientific theories are found to be wanting! You’re whole premise is this: “Some people had wrong notions about maggots, therefore my daemon doth exist!”

Sorry S&S, y’alls so-called logic just don’t quite compute.

Peace, love, and the American way.

TheJaytheist said...

"...age and skill will always overcome youth and treachery!"

Not if the opponent has youth, treachery, AND skill!

But I did appreciate the humor.

For the sake of argument lets say you have thoroughly convinced me that evolution wasn't a viable explanation for the diversity of life on planet earth.

What then?

Do you have any credible evidence for the "theory" of GODDIDIT?

TheJaytheist said...

Dave asks:"What in the world could two science ignoramuses possible learn from each other?"

Which reminded me of a quote(for some reason):


"If stupidity got us into this mess, then why can't it get us out?"
--Will Rogers

SlowAndSteady said...

boomslang: "Secondly, you are employing the very argument that some of us admonished you to NOT use, and that, for your review, is that attempting to shoot holes in the current leading scientifically-based hypothesis for the origins of life..."
Yes, I see that.
I'll stop that.
I am seriously interested in what made you leave the camp I'm in.

SlowAndSteady said...

stronger now: "Do you have any credible evidence for the "theory" of GODDIDIT?"
No.
As you must know, any evidence I have for this is not "transferrable".
Discussion of evidence, I realize here, is non-issue anyway, so, tell me, what got you moving on to this site from Christendom?

SlowAndSteady said...

Stephen_Richard_Webb said...Something that I don't get concerning fundamental christianities opposition of macroevolution...

It's a puzzler, for sure, I agree.
Is that why you left it?

SlowAndSteady said...

webmdave: What in the world could two science ignoramuses possible learn from each other?

I concede you have nothing to learn from me.
However, I would like to learn from you what happened that made you leave?

webmdave said...

S&S: I wrote it all out several years ago: CLICK HERE

Dave8 said...

S&S, I know I am not currently engaged in any dialogue with your statements, but... a few observations nonetheless.

Christendom has only "one" binding tenet; the acceptance that Jesus was "The Jewish Messiah” that fulfilled the Old Testament prophesies. Christendom was founded on the "closure" of the Old Covenant, and the establishment of a Newer Covenant.

This single tenet of "belief" is the "linchpin" or "keystone" for "all" those who proclaim to be Christian.

Example #1; if a person accepts the Old Testament/Jewish Tanakh, and New Testament as Holy Inspired Writings, but reject Jesus as The Jewish Messiah that fulfilled the Old Testament prophesies... they would likely be a Messianic Jew, etc.

Example #2; if a person accepts "only" the Torah/first five books of the bible, and perhaps a few other books of the Old Testament/Jewish Tanakh, then they are likely a Rabbinical Jew.

There is a "lot" we can talk about regarding religion, but you are "inquiring" about "your" camp. Your camp encompasses Christendom, in a "general" context.

So, because you have asked a "general" question, about Christendom; I'll respond by addressing the "only" tenet of belief that is "relevant" to "all" Christendom.

I do not accept the belief tenet; "Jesus was The Jewish Messiah, that fulfilled the Old Testament prophesies."

Because, I do not believe in the single "linchpin's" (absolute variable in the Christian formula) veracity... I am not a member of Christendom, or any of the thousands of sub-Christian splinter groups.

If you want to explore the Jewish Prophesies, that went "unfulfilled" then, we can start with the prophesy that once The Jewish Messiah arrived to carry out the Jewish God's promise to "His" people, that the Jews would be "united" under one national banner, and that "all" people would be brought to the "one" True Religion - Judaism.

Now, if that happened, Christendom would never have been established... the "establishment" of Christendom, logically "dis-proves" the "fulfillment" of the Old Testament/Jewish Tanakh prophesies.

Anyway, that is why "I", am not a member of Christendom. Also, there are many people who attend Christian services, who accept that "single" axiom of Jesus as The Messiah... it is how we have "Mormons", "Catholics", "Protestants", etc., all under the Christendom banner, but "all" very much different in how they "ritualistically" practice their "religious" beliefs. Some have gone as far, as extending messianic prophesy; Pope (Catholics), Prophet (Mormons), etc.

Dave8 said...

Oh, and... of course, beyond not being a member of Christendom, is a much different discussion, than, not wanting to be associated intellectually lazy people in society, who "claim" to be Christian - perhaps, a follow on discussion?

SlowAndSteady said...

webmdave, thanks for informative input. I will read it over, but not with any ulterior motive, I assure you.

TheJaytheist said...

S&S:"... what got you moving on to this site from Christendom?"

A desire to stay sane.

See my incomplete story here.

boomSLANG said...

S & S...I am seriously interested in what made you leave the camp I'm in.

The simplified answer is the unceasing cognitive dissonance that being in your "camp" caused me. I had to continually weigh my options--"do I want to keep ignoring my intellect?"..or... "do I want to stay on my knees?". Finally, my intellect took precedence(Precisely as "God" knew it would)

freeman said...

Hey Boom,
So that is why Adam and Eve were forbidden to eat from the tree of knowledge!?

The bible god loves his subjects to be ignorant!

TheJaytheist said...

..::tumbleweeds::..

SlowAndSteady said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SlowAndSteady said...

Webmdave, I'm still reading your bio from the link you gave me.
I'm not really so much a slow reader as one who has limited free time.
From what I've read, I believe you have come to some solid conclusions.
So be it.
I do see some similar patterns of experience in my life, however, I noticeably differ from you in how serious you were about it compared to me as a kid.
As a 13 year old, I was given the option by my father as to whether I would continue having to go to church with my mother, and I optioned out.

SlowAndSteady said...

Webmdave, I have some experiences which do not line up at all with some of your conclusions about Christians I've read from your link, specifically regarding your conclusion that there is no new life in them.
They are not "pat answers", and not the result of formal study, but personal experiences.
Would you be interested in reading about them?

TheJaytheist said...

S&S, There are many stories of people that have gotten "new lives" after dropping the god belief as well.

Some have gone from the brink of insanity, to a relatively calm and rational individual.

A "new life" in atheism.

If there are people who have totally changed their behaviours, for the better, after leaving christianity, what then could an experiencial tale of change be worth as evidence for supernatural change in a (christian)persons life?

I suppose if you only view the acceptance of the christian worldview as being "better" than any other change then you would see the person who drops this belief as one who automatically changed for the "worse", regardless of whether or not it was beneficial to his life and those around him.

SlowAndSteady said...

strongernow: If you are in a more peaceful state than you were, go for it. To conclude I think you have changed for the worse is irrelevant. I will always say to go where the peace is, unless, of course, you find peace at the expense of another person's peace or violate them somehow, which I'm sure is not the case with you.
To cope, I lived most of my life with my ability to detect deep-core agitation shut off, and then the dam broke.
I now pay attention to that "inner peace indicator" and will find out what it is that disrupts me and, if possible, change the situation.
Work tends to disrupt me at times, however, I need the paycheck, so, without any other job, I accept that agitation, and I'm ok with that for now.
I do not think less of you or think you're in a worse situation, stongernow, for making that move. I applaud you for it. Many don't do anything (as opposed to can't do anything) to resolve situations that plague them and I can't help but tend to think less of them, regardless of whether they align themselves with any of my beliefs.
Overall, I have more a problem with frustration rather than categorizing anyone as "less than".
It's like, if I was an eye-witness at an accident and I saw the white car ram the black car and those that arrive on the scene after the fact are trying to persuade me it was the other way around, or, once it was all cleaned up, persuading me that the accident never took place.
I was there and I saw what happened.
I don't think less of the those who don't believe me, I've just learned to give the explanations and leave it alone or risk my own peace.
You know, it's not like I took a ride on an alien space ship or something, but, if I had a dramatic role in a movie playing the part of someone who had taken a ride on one, I'm there.
Even if I had no talent as an actor, I could do that part with believability. And probably great frustration as well.

boomSLANG said...

S & S...Strongernow: If you are in a more peaceful state than you were, go for it. To conclude I think you have changed for the worse is irrelevant. I will always say to go where the peace is, unless, of course, you find peace at the expense of another person's peace or violate them somehow, which I'm sure is not the case with you.

If I may....

The search for "peace", and the search for truth, are often times two entirely different things. In other words, the two might not necessarily yield the same results.

Again, the objective search for truth means to find/accept the results, regardless of if those results bring "peace", or any other emotionally-based state-of-being.

S & S......if I was an eye-witness at an accident and I saw the white car ram the black car and those [who] arrive on the scene after the fact are trying to persuade me it was the other way around, or, once it was all cleaned up, persuading me that the accident never took place. I was there and I saw what happened. I don't think less of the those who don't believe me, I've just learned to give the explanations and leave it alone or risk my own peace.

This, IMO, is a poor analogy, if it is meant to illustrate a parallel to believing in "God", and/or, why some people lack a belief in "God".

If you are an eyewitness to an automobile accident, there are certainly the driver's sides of the story to consider, as well as any passengers. There are also the crumbled remains of the cars. There are skidmarks on the road, which can determine who braked, and who did not. There are any subsequent injuries, medical reports.....and the list goes on.

In other words, it doesn't matter how "frustrated" you become, or how insistant you are, unless you can offer any, or all, of the above-exampled types evidence for this "accident", your analogy fails to be truly analogous with your premise.

TheJaytheist said...

Implications that exchristians were acting the part? Is that what you're getting at S&S?

Great!

So are you....

...unless you can somehow show us that you are a True Believer™ and a True Christian™.

I see no need for you to make such an implication other than it serves to make you feel better.

Or, have I missread your intent?

SlowAndSteady said...

Boomslang: "The search for "peace", and the search for truth, are often times two entirely different things. In other words, the two might not necessarily yield the same results."
I agree.
Finding "the truth" in the case of, say, being defrauded by your best friend, will yield anything but peace, but will eventually bring closure and the peace that goes with that.
The "truth", as Pilate was referring to in his question of Jesus, might also bring the loss of peace if you had to give up your girlfriend and go back to your wife, but, eventually, peace will rule in your life.

Boomslang: "This, IMO, is a poor analogy, if it is meant to illustrate a parallel to believing in "God", and/or, why some people lack a belief in "God"."

I was only trying to prove I was not harboring any "better than thou" attitude with this illustration, and, unless there's something deep within that I just can't see, I know I don't have any such attitude.
However, that is not the point here in my communications in this blog.
As I said out front, I asked for permission to challenge your views, and I expect the same challenge in return.
Belief in God, and believing that you can have a personal relationship with God is extremely tough, and it easily makes sense to leave it alone.
Furthermore, many reasons to reject faith can be found in the actions of members in the church who, for instance, can find no forgiveness for divorce, twisting scripture to prove their point, ignorant that it was God himself that first provided for divorce with instructions to Moses.
At that time, it was to address violence and murder as the result of an unbreakable agreement, whereas Jesus was addressing an issue of seemingly pious men using the Moses Bill of Divorcement to "sample" all the virgins and not be stuck with maintenance of multiple wives and children.

boomSLANG said...

Previously, I said: "The search for 'peace', and the search for truth, are often times two entirely different things. In other words, the two might not necessarily yield the same results."

S & S responds...I agree. Finding "the truth" in the case of, say, being defrauded by your best friend, will yield anything but peace, but will eventually bring closure and the peace that goes with that.

It is not entirely true that "peace" prevails in the end, in such situations. We hear in the media of many intances where MURDERING the offender is the result of such trespasses. Are you telling me that having the blood of your former, and now deceased, "best friend" on your hands, eventually brings "peace"? In other words, don't go looking for the "truth", unless you can handle it. I argue that most, if not all religious people who opt for "faith", in lieu of the honest inquiry into their beliefs, could not handle the truth of what they may find. Further, I think clinging to "faith" is a semi-admission to that.

S & S...The "truth", as Pilate was referring to in his question of Jesus, might also bring the loss of peace if you had to give up your girlfriend and go back to your wife, but, eventually, peace will rule in your life.

Again, more hasty generalizing, IMO. Many people would sooner KILL their spouse, before giving up their "lover". It happens.

S & S...I was only trying to prove I was not harboring any "better than thou" attitude with this illustration, and, unless there's something deep within that I just can't see, I know I don't have any such attitude.

The Christian philosophy, itself - at least implicitly - wreaks of a "better than thou" attitude. Let's be honest---"I am saved...you are not" ? "I'm not perfect...just forgiven" ?

S & S...However, that is not the point here in my communications in this blog. As I said out front, I asked for permission to challenge your views, and I expect the same challenge in return.

Okay, where is the "challenge" of my nonbelief?? Where is anyone telling you that you cannot post your opinion(s)?

S & S...Belief in God, and believing that you can have a personal relationship with God is extremely tough, and it easily makes sense to leave it alone.

Yes, I believe that to have "a relationship with God" is extremely tough, as well. But obviously, for different reasons. To me, it has to do with why the invisible and the non-existent look so much alike.

S & S...Furthermore, many reasons to reject faith can be found in the actions of members in the church who, for instance, can find no forgiveness for divorce, twisting scripture to prove their point, ignorant that it was God himself that first provided for divorce with instructions to Moses.

Cart, ahead of horse. Until you can provide evidence that the "bible" was of "Divine" inspiration, telling me the "God" did this, that, and the other thing, is moot.

S & S...At that time, it was to address violence and murder as the result of an unbreakable agreement, whereas Jesus was addressing an issue of seemingly pious men using the Moses Bill of Divorcement to "sample" all the virgins and not be stuck with maintenance of multiple wives and children.

Yes, "sample all virgins". That sounds simply lovely. Perhaps this is why it was okay to stone to death, any woman who attempted to marry, who wasn't a virgin...you know, to cut back on "maintenance".

SlowAndSteady said...

boomslang: "Are you telling me that having the blood of your former, and now deceased, "best friend" on your hands, eventually brings "peace"?"

No. I can't tell you what it would be like to have the blood of my best friend, or anyone, on my hands, so, can't argue it. But, from the wrongs I've done to others in my past that I do have on my hands I can tell you that peace in that area only came after facing up to the wrong I had done.
In 1978 I was wrenched out of the mindset that I was right in what I had done in leaving my wife and children and had to confront it as wrong on my part. Although I had not made peace my goal in all this, I did come to peace in it, which was interrupted by increasing revelation of the harm I had done to them. As a result, I continue to make frank admissions of this wrong to my ex-wife and my children. There was grievous harm done to them at the hands of an abuser who would not have got past me if I had remained on my watch. Errors in judgment that my children have made in life I can see clearly they would not have made if I had not done what I did. I'm still walking that one out, and, writing this reminds me that there is new relationship with my children and the guilt that, for years, hindered that relationship is not hindering anymore. I was also able to turn a new page in life when, in 1978, I faced it.

"Again, more hasty generalizing, IMO. Many people would sooner KILL their spouse, before giving up their "lover". It happens."

Yes, sadly, it does happen. This spouse I'm referring to I had left 6 years before for a luscious blond I met at work and we fell in love. I had never been in love before and, could not keep from an affair with her. After 3 months or so, responsibility brought me back to my wife, but I longed for freedom, which I eventually got, but, of course, the romance I had left behind and now expected to spring back to life, was gone. Definitely not worth committing any crimes over. Never thought of that anyway.

"To me, it has to do with why the invisible and the non-existent look so much alike."

Well put. That was a l.o.l. for me. You're a good writer. Seriously.
Well, for me, I can tell you I did not get convinced because of anyone providing me evidence. Wasn't looking for it and I would have probably told them what I've read in responses here to bible thumpers like me, with a few more expletives.
What mainly convinced me, eventually, and it did take some time, was life after that moment in 1978 where I confronted my wrong as wrong, and comparing my life leading up to that point. I was dumped by my girlfriend and my only friend, and I saw a connection to this repeating heartbreak, every 6 months or so, and my divorce in 1975.
And, as it turns out, I was right.
To give you some background, I had acute brain inflammation syndrome in 1965, right after high school graduation at age 18, (caused by sleeping sickness, Equine Encephalitis) and had some noticeable memory, as well as other brain function impairment, which I really did not want to face, and did not face. Lucky for me I had written my university entrance exams and was accepted before my bout with this disease. I did attend university after the disease, and I even made it through the first year of Science, but my parents, to use my older sister's words, thought I had gone off the rails. And they were right. They thought I had done some drugs or something, since LSD was just starting to emerge along with the hippies at that time. But, that was not the case.
I just learned how to cope with the aftermath of this and, dropped out of university, got married in 1968, had a child and just kept going.
I did notice a change after the encounter in 1978, though, and after at least four months of no return to what I had known previously, I had to consider this as evidence. I could not explain it away, as much as I tried. And, I know this is not evidence I can pass along to convince anyone of God's existence, but it did play a major role in convincing me. There was also other supernatural events and evidence that was provided intellectually in large amounts once I got past a certain point in the process, including, at God's own urging, confronting doubts about His existence I had since Sunday School that I did not want to face just in case the minuscule faith that was there would disappear.
You know, if I could prove to you somehow that God is real, I would. But that is just not available and, not from any weakness in the Case for God. God told me one day about 8 years ago, out of the blue, that I don't have to prove He exists.
I was surprised by that because I did not realize that I did not have to do that.
I've since concluded that physical evidence leads a person through intellect, however, the path to an assurance of God's existence is not to be found that way, but only through the "heart" which has been given enough "evidence" to prime the process.
I can say for sure that to demand evidence that meets your criteria closes the door on any evidence of God's existence that can be available to you. It just won't happen.
Been there, done that.
There were other times I had prayed and I just gave up after a while since no answer came. Still don't know why it went that way, although determination, I think, was a factor. Never really got angry at God. Just didn't really believe and I was confirmed in that when prayers didn't get answered.

"Perhaps this is why it was okay to stone to death, any woman who attempted to marry, who wasn't a virgin...you know, to cut back on "maintenance"."

Huh?

TheJaytheist said...

"Just didn't really believe and I was confirmed in that when prayers didn't get answered."

Hmmm.

Do you think that someone could really believe, yet when their prayers are not answered, could come to the conclusion that what they believed in wasn't real? Or is that an impossibility to you? If so, please explaine why.

Or are you going to continue to ignore me?

boomSLANG said...

Dear S & S,

To economize on time and space, we can say that no human being is entirely exempt from dealing with the trials and tribulations of "life". Of course, this is stated obviously, and in no way proves or disproves the existence of any invisible, supernatural beings.

So, moving on, you said...

God told me one day about 8 years ago, out of the blue, that I don't have to prove He exists.

"He" is right! You don't have to! On the other hand, if either you, or "Him", expect me to believe that this "God" exists, and "He" spoke to you, personally, then yes, you'll have to prove it, or at least, provide some convincing evidence. But you admit that you cannot. So, perhaps we're at a stalemate.

In any event, while the "Creator of the Universe" seemingly has no problem making appearances, and having pow-wows, etc., with certain individuals, for some strange reason it is evidently intent on making the majority of its supposed creation accept its existence on "faith".

Well, I have a problem with that, in a senario where "God" really existed. But of course, I believe it's much more likely that no such being exists, and that these "encounters" amount to self-deception, and wishful thinking, when people are at their most vulnerable.

In any regard, I'd be curious to know what the voice of the "Creator of the Universe" sounds like. I believed I had a "relationship" with "God" for 2/3rds of my life, but even still, I never heard a "voice" that wasn't my own conscience.

Can you describe the voice, then? Did "God" have a middle-eastern accent? A lisp? Was there hall reverb on His voice?..or was it bone-dry? While I'm sure you see this as mockery, and I guess it is to an extent, I really am curious to know.

SlowAndSteady said...

Sorry, strongernow, I don't understand the previous post to me about "acting the part". My intent in the post I think you were responding to was to tell you I don't look down on those that don't share my worldview. I don't hold my worldview with some sort of pride as though I made an investment in stocks that went up and that no one else believed in. I was right and you were wrong, sort of thing. There's nothing to be proud of. Although, you could easily have that conclusion about me since I'm the one still in ignorant bliss, guilt, shame, etc.
In response to your next post, about prayers not getting answered, yes, they "could come to the conclusion that what they believed in wasn't real". Very easily. Even for me, with great reluctance, I would have to say to you that it would not be impossible for me to ever not believe. I've been through some rough trials and still believe, but, I'm very human. I love my wife of 27 years, never been unfaithful to her, I'm devoted to continuing that faithfulness, but would I ever be so bold as to say I would never be unfaithful? I know my track record in that and I know how human I am and I need divine help in that area.

SlowAndSteady said...

boomslang: "Can you describe the voice, then? Did "God" have a middle-eastern accent? A lisp?...." L.O.L.! That's really funny. I am laughing out loud. You've got an enviable sense of humor, and you're obviously intelligent.
That's a difficult question to answer. And I can understand any mockery, believe me. I used to wonder about that when I heard, as a kid, someone telling me they heard from God. I really thought they were imagining things and a little nutty. Although I don't really like it, I understand if you think that of me also.
It's my experience that there's different ways of hearing. The majority are like how ideas come to you, but there's a marked difference. You still don't know if it was really God or not until it's tested out, like if it was a futuristic event, the test is if it really happens that way. I've had a few of those and witnesses to verify it. Eventually, the "marked difference" becomes an almost certain sign it is from God. But, after 30 years, that "marked difference" identifier is still a very fragile reckoning point with me. Also, I can still very easily miss-diagnose what I've "heard". Like the "voice of warning" to double-check something and you ignore it and you ignore your wife when she asks, for the first time in 25 years, if you checked all the fluid levels on the car before a long road trip and you would have found a broken radiator cap and saved a lot of fuss with overheating if you did. The "voice", as it were, where I was told I did not have to prove He exists was unusual in that it was almost as clear as a voice and there was certainty of what I heard. No accent or lisp though. I was searching through the debris on a workshop table at the time, looking for a lost part for something I was fixing and I was totally preoccupied with that at the time. I was taken off guard with "the voice" and had to realize that I was indeed trying to prove existence. At my first "hearing" in 1978, I had to drastically revise my concept of God from the guy in the long white beard and robe to, and I hesitate to say this because my words are "clumsy", a mid-twenties, life-of-the-party type and more human than God. Totally mind-boggling, but totally acceptable with me.
"making the majority of its supposed creation accept its existence on "faith". Well, I have a problem with that, in a senario where "God" really existed." Well, so do I. God challenged me to let go of the weak faith and question it, but direct the questions at him. The tiny amount of faith you have to start off this relationship is there but usually buried in frustration and the hope-crushing hard realities of "life".

boomSLANG said...

boomslang, to S & S: "Can you describe the voice[of 'God'], then?"

S & S responds..That's a difficult question to answer. And I can understand any mockery, believe me.

While I admit to a thinly veiled jab..i.e..mockery---still, on the other hand, I'm perfectly serious, and frankly, I don't see why it's so "difficult" to answer. You said that "God", e.g..the presumed "Creator of Universe", spoke to you. Naturally, I'm assuming the voice was objective, as opposed to subjective. Based on that cut-and-dried distinction - and assuming I am right - I want to know what the "voice" sounded like. It's that simple---or so you'd think....

S & S...It's my experience that there's different ways of hearing. The majority are like how ideas come to you, but there's a marked difference. You still don't know if it was really God or not until it's tested out, like if it was a futuristic event, the test is if it really happens that way.

Correct me if I'm out in left field somewhere....

*If "the voice" in your head relays information that is accurate, then it's not simply your "conscience" communicating information, but instead, it is "God" communicating information. And if the information turns out to be inaccurate, well, then you know "the voice" was merely your "conscience" screwing up again? Am I close?

S & S...I've had a few of those and witnesses to verify it.

Wait, you mean... you had witnesses that heard "the voice", too?

S & S...Eventually, the "marked difference" becomes an almost certain sign it is from God.

Yes, "almost". And with the "mark difference" being how I just described it here*, above(until I hear otherwise)

S & S...But, after 30 years, that "marked difference" identifier is still a very fragile reckoning point with me.

I'll wager that that's because "God's voice" sounds identical to "the voice" in your head. Yes, I can see how that's a fragile situation. Listen, I'm going to be frank - and you probably already know this - but I believe "the voice" that is your "conscience", and "the voice" you believe is "God", are one and the same, that being the former. Yup, the exact same thing--no distinction, other than you've convinced yourself that "the hits" are of a "Divine" order, and thus, direct communication from "God", as opposed to improbable coincidence, or even probable coincidence.

S & S...The "voice", as it were, where I was told I did not have to prove He exists was unusual in that it was almost as clear as a voice and there was certainty of what I heard.

Fantastic!..then you'd be happy to oblige me on my original query then, yes? Let's see....

S & S...No accent or lisp though[in "God's voice"].

NO lisp; NO accent. Fine. Now, suppose I ask you, nicely, to fetch me something out of the kitchen drawer. You say, "Okay, fine...what do you want?" At which point, I give you a list of 7000 things which it is not. Now, how does that help you know what I DO want?

'Get the picture?

S & S...At my first "hearing" in 1978, I had to drastically revise my concept of God from the guy in the long white beard and robe to, and I hesitate to say this because my words are "clumsy", a mid-twenties, life-of-the-party type and more human than God.

Lol. I'm sorry. So, you're saying that at this "hearing", the Creator of the Universe sounded something like Jeff Spicoli?.. from "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"?...like, "Duuude, you don't hafta prove to those clowns that you exist, dude. Like, yur God, dude."

Something of the sort?

S & S...God challenged me to let go of the weak faith and question it, but direct the questions at him.

And what makes you so sure that no one else but you thought to direct their questions at "God"? Sheesh.

AtheistToothFairy said...

SlowAndSteady wrote:
The "voice", as it were, where I was told I did not have to prove He exists was unusual in that it was almost as clear as a voice and there was certainty of what I heard. No accent or lisp though
--------
Boomslang,

I always found it odd that those who hear the voice of god, never have a problem understanding god. He never seems to have any accent or other speech impediment.

...But who am I to question god's voice.
I guess if god can speak in any language, from any country, from any time period, he would also make sure he spoke to a xtian in their own accent to.

Of course, some might argue that it's the believers own mind talking to them, but what do such skeptics know anyway [g]


ATF (Who wonders if god has a universal translator that he bought at a Star Trek convention?)

TheJaytheist said...

Jeff Spicoli...hahah! Oh man! That's a far cry from the way "the voice" sounded to me when I was a christian. To me it sounded just like Rooster Cogburn.

SlowAndSteady said...

boomslang, to S & S: "Can you describe the voice[of 'God'], then?" S & S responds..That's a ... ... It's that simple---or so you'd think....

For me, in my experience, there's no sound at all.

S & S...It's my experience that there's .... .... was merely your "conscience" screwing up again? Am I close?

No.

S & S...I've had a few of those and witnesses to verify it.Wait, you mean... you had witnesses that heard "the voice", too?

No. Witnesses that heard me say something unexpected and unusual was going to happen, and it did.
For an instance of an unexpected event, I told a friend who was leaving town, on two separate occasions 2 - 3 weeks apart, that I expected my wife and I would continue to stay in that town for the next 3 years, and, both times, I had to interrupt myself as I was explaining this to him with the inexplicable "sense" that I was wrong about that and that we were going to be gone even before the end of summer. That was in February and we left the end of April. Conscience can't explain this, nor can intuition. I moved to take a job for which I was placed on a 1 year term eligible list 2 years prior and I was offered it a few weeks after telling my friend the above.

S & S...But, after 30 years, that "marked difference" identifier is still a ... ... improbable coincidence, or even probable coincidence.

You'd think I'd examine that, wouldn't you? I know what my conscience is and what my intuition is. This is not the same as either of those two functions. I live here. I know what I have to compare with in regard to conscience and intuition and I had 30 years of experience with those functions before this new dimension came on the scene.

S & S...The "voice", as it were, where I was... ...what I DO want? 'Get the picture?

Not sure if I get the picture, but, I think the partial answer, which you probably don't want to hear and maybe you've already done, is, "knock". Sounds simple enough, right? It's not. Let me explain using what you already know, I'm sure. We have a new neighbor across the street. A provincial court judge. Not sure if he's a "just judge" or not, but seems like a nice guy based on the few times we've talked. But I would have to be pretty desperate to knock on his door after dark. Even more desperate if I kept on knocking after he said to go away, but you have to have the determination that says you're not leaving until he opens the door. So, knock. On the invisible door. Simple enough. But very hard to do. Even more difficult is knocking on it when your friends, if they saw you, would give you a quiet smirk and a glint in their eye as you entertain them while they're watching you make an idiot out of yourself. And it gets more difficult after that.

S & S...At my first "hearing" in 1978, I had to drastically ... ....clowns that you exist, dude. Like, yur God, dude." Something of the sort?

No. The point I was trying to make is that it was a total shock to find that God was youthful, not old at all. Also, there was no barrier by Him being God and me just a human.

S & S...God challenged me to let go of the weak faith and question it, but direct the questions at him.And what makes you so sure that no one else but you thought to direct their questions at "God"? Sheesh.

Sorry. I'll plead ignorance on that one. I was ignorant. Stupid also. Not to mention, Slow. I apologize. Sincerely.

boomSLANG said...

Dear S & S,

Unless you have any pertinent questions, I'm bowing out of this discussion with you. Honestly, I've heard it all before, and I just don't feel inspired enough to continue to challenge you on your subjective, personal encounters with what you believe to be "God". It's "a voice" one minute; there's "no sound at all", the next. It's not your "intuition", nor your "conscience", but rather, some other "dimension". These things, and the gazillions of supernatural claims like them, of course, are not falsifiable. I may as well be talking to a kid who is translating - or who is convinced they are translating - what his or her stuffed 'Winnie the Pooh' is "telling" them.

As parting food for thought---the first thing I would be curious about regarding your lastest fantastic claim, would be how you would know, with absolute certainty, that this alleged "bearded" and "youthful" being that you heard/didn't hear, is the Christian deity, and not "Thor", or "Allah", or "Ebenezer Scrooge's" Ghost? After all, perhaps Ebenezer has been juicing in heaven, and now he looks more "youthful". You know how it goes.....'sky's the limit with "faith"!

SlowAndSteady said...

That's a good question, boomslang.
This whole "voice" experience I've explained only in small pieces to you, started off with a much deeper immersion in bible reading as I was challenged to do from a book I was given at the time and by an acquaintance and his wife who be-friended me during the split up with my girlfriend in 1978. When I moved into the apartment building in Feb. 1977, they also had shared some baptist literature from Campus Crusade for Christ, which freaked me out, but I eventually acted on, and this new experience was related to the path I was already on. I remember struggles early on (1978) trying to be certain of all this, wondering if it could even be some sort of sinister event and it was no minor struggle trying to understand all this. Back in those days, after about 30 days of being supernaturally blown out of my comfort zone, I really had a struggle to believe any of it was true, even an event I clearly remember today involving lights that could very well have been what was described in the 2nd Chapter of Acts. I remember talking to this person and his wife that had truly been there to help me deal with what was happening, telling him I was suddenly at a place where I found belief a struggle, and he encouraged me to keep going since it was obvious then that, even in that short space of time, I had changed for the better. As I thought about this over the past weeks, the "voice", for lack of any word to describe it, was there when I read from the bible and explained some things I don't see explained anywhere, and was also part of a sense of deep and lasting "comfort" that is, again, consistent with what I've known to be a part of any, once-in-a-couple-of-years-or-so "non-verbal voice dimension experiences".
I appreciate the sincerity of your comments and questions, boomslang.
One pertinent question I have for you is, why don't you just go for it? Break a leg as they say in skiiing. Why get hung up on all the nit-picky stuff where it has to be just your way or no way at all? Why don't you just forget about how you're living now and what you think God will expect of you, and just go for it?

boomSLANG said...

::sigh::

S & S...I appreciate the sincerity of your comments and questions, boomslang. One pertinent question I have for you is, why don't you just go for it?

So, S & S, while you "appreciate the sincerity" of my comments, etc... you, for reasons that to me, wreak of condescension and arrogance, assume that I wasn't "sincere" in seeking to find/know "God", and you've concluded this because my results are in direct conflict with what your "honest" search yielded. Charming.

You continue...Why get hung up on all the nit-picky stuff where it has to be just your way or no way at all?

Where Universal Truth is concerned; where the answers to the greatest questions we'll ever ask, are concerned, I hardly find it "nit-picking" to ask for solid, logically-sound evidence, from those who claim to have that "Truth", and those answers, respectively.

Oh, and it has to be "my way", because I am ME; I'm not you, or anyone else.

You...Why don't you just forget about how you're living now and what you think God will expect of you, and just go for it?

Good grief, you really just don't get it.

Look, I already spent(wasted) 2/3rds of my f%cking life being terrified to "just go for it". Do you u-n-d-e-r-s-t-a-n-d? It was only when I got up off of my knees, and stood up like a man, that the guilt, shame, and fear that was Christianity-imposed into my psyche, became impotent. In other words, I'm "going for it" now.

Since then, one thing I've found is that good and bad things happen to me at the same statistical rate they did when I believed that "Jesus" was "blessing" me and my family. It was self-deception...i.e..bullshit.

Previously, I asked: "..how you would know, with absolute certainty, that this alleged bearded' and 'youthful' being that you heard/didn't hear, is the Christian deity, and not 'Thor', or 'Allah', or 'Ebenezer Scrooge's' Ghost?"

You answer....That's a good question, boomslang. This whole "voice" experience I've explained only in small pieces to you, started off with a much deeper immersion in bible reading as I was challenged to do from a book I was given at the time and by an acquaintance and his wife who be-friended me during the split up with my girlfriend in 1978. When I moved into the apartment building in Feb. 1977, they also had shared some baptist literature from Campus Crusade for Christ, which freaked me out, but I eventually acted on, and this new experience was related to the path I was already on. I remember struggles early on (1978) trying to be certain of all this, wondering if it could even be some sort of sinister event and it was no minor struggle trying to understand all this. Back in those days, after about 30 days of being supernaturally blown out of my comfort zone, I really had a struggle to believe any of it was true, even an event I clearly remember today involving lights that could very well have been what was described in the 2nd Chapter of Acts. I remember talking to this person and his wife that had truly been there to help me deal with what was happening, telling him I was suddenly at a place where I found belief a struggle, and he encouraged me to keep going since it was obvious then that, even in that short space of time, I had changed for the better. As I thought about this over the past weeks, the "voice", for lack of any word to describe it, was there when I read from the bible and explained some things I don't see explained anywhere, and was also part of a sense of deep and lasting "comfort" that is, again, consistent with what I've known to be a part of any, once-in-a-couple-of-years-or-so "non-verbal voice dimension experiences".

i.e..you don't "know".

SlowAndSteady said...

So, how certain is anything in life? Look around you. Nothing stays the way it is for very long. Things that are understood today might turn into something that was actually misunderstood tomorrow, and so on. You see things and hear things but how do you know for sure you heard it and saw it? Maybe your mind was playing tricks on you or your "medication" is doing strange things to your ability to reason.
But yes, go ahead, demand absolute certainty. I'm sure you'll get that one day.
However, for me, as uncertain as all in life is, I'm certain enough to stake my life on what I've explained here.
I'm pretty certain I know how to recognize arrogance and condescension too, boomslang.
I'll call it a day here now.
Sandals are a little dusty. Time to shake them off and move on.
Ciao.

boomSLANG said...

S & S,

When I see a post that remotely implies that you agree to disagree, then I'll give you my promise that I'll bow out. Until then, I don't see anything of the sort; it just keeps on coming. So be it...

You...So, how certain is anything in life?

*Irrelevant conclusion. Simply because we must plead uncertainty/ignorance on certain fields of study, doesn't mean that anything conceivable with the human mind, is therefore plausible. There is a mind-independent reality, and thus far, the scientific method 'leads the pack' for determining what is consistant with that reality. And if you didn't already know it, science doesn't deal in absolute certainty; it's "conclusions" are provisional.

You...Look around you.

Thanks for the advice; until now, it never once occured to me to do that. But seriously, I have "looked around", and I don't see anything metaphysical..i.e..beyond the physical. In fact, if I could detect such a thing with my limited physical senses, then it wouldn't be classified as "meta-physical" anymore.

You...Nothing stays the way it is for very long.

Agreed!.. the Universe is not static. No argument there. But according to this theory that "nothing" is static, I see an immediate contradiction when someone tries to qualify the hypothesis that the human personality, or "soul", can "stay the way it is"..i.e..can exist in a perpetual, unchanging state...namely, one of unadulterated bliss.

Of course, I'm fully aware that you probably have your own rationalization as to how this "exception" to the rule applies. In fact, I'm sure of it. Just remember, there is not one scrap of objective evidence that the human "personality" can survive death. Notwithstanding, if S & S wants to believe his emotions, such as his "gut instinct", should trump science?.... then he is free to believe that. For me, and with a brief review of history, I see that man's "gut instinct" has led him away from "truth", much more often than to it.

You...Things that are understood today might turn into something that was actually misunderstood tomorrow, and so on.

Precisely! For example, the majority of the world's population once believed that the earth was flat. We now know that to be a false belief. This knowledge is being offered conditionally, nonetheless---meaning, scientists would be happy for you to offer evidence that the earth is some other shape, besides spherical.

You...You see things and hear things but how do you know for sure you heard it and saw it?

Through critical analysis and testing, if I so desire, and if there is doubt. If you are talking absolute certainty, there is none. If you wish, you can review my thoughts on "possibility" vs plausiblity here*, above.

You...Maybe your mind was playing tricks on you or your "medication" is doing strange things to your ability to reason.

Right. So?..maybe one's mind is playing tricks on them? Sold!

You...But yes, go ahead, demand absolute certainty.

STRAWMAN. Here, let me try: But yes!..go ahead, believe that anything conceivable is absolutely true, and nothing is real!!

In other words, I have never represented myself the way you state it, above. Stick to facts, please.

You...I'm sure you'll get that[absolute certainty] one day.

Well, I'm 99.999999999999% certain, that one day, sooner or later, I will cease to exist. If true, I'll have no way of knowing it anyway.

You...However, for me, as uncertain as all in life is, I'm certain enough to stake my life on what I've explained here.

You can elaborate if you'd like, but based on what you say here, you seem to be employing "Pascal's Wager"...i.e..it is wise to believe just in case. Marvelous, that's your choice--if you want to spend the only life that you know you have, based on the extremely off-chance that you'll inherit another, that's your choice. Let me remind you, however, that you also "stake your life" on the belief that you have the correct religious beliefs under your skullcap. In other words, "what if" both Atheism and Christianity are wrong? What have you done to protect yourself?

You...I'm pretty certain I know how to recognize arrogance and condescension too, boomslang.

Perhaps you do. Perhaps you define it: All those who don't do cart-wheels in agreement with my spiritual beliefs.

And for the record, you came here; no one came and found you. I think that's a pertinent distinction, do you?

You...I'll call it a day here now. Sandals are a little dusty. Time to shake them off and move on. Ciao

We'll see about that, I suppose.

Best regards, boom'

SlowAndSteady said...

"We'll see about that, I suppose."
I'm back again! How did you know I would be? Perhaps metaphysical becoming redefined into the physical, I would suspect, for you, boom'.
I predict you'll answer: Not that difficult when you consider S&S, the definition of arrogance, and saying one thing but doing another. Typical xtian. So easy to predict.
I'll stay with metaphysical becoming something else. That's a process I just learned about. Right here, matter of fact. Too old, but, I guess I'm never too old to learn.
I find your arrogance and condescension ringing a cord of harmony with my arrogance and condescension, so it's your fault I'm back.
Seriously, my mind demands the proof-positive of objective physical scientific method type evidence and keeps searching until it gets something or it can begin producing the evidence for itself in cognitive dissonance, if I'm using that term correctly. In the process that began in 1978, anything I was not certain of at that point was stripped away and something of the metaphysical did meet that criteria, so I didn't make a leap to believe anything regardless of its credibility just because I had to. Today, when I venture out to follow up a gut feel, my mind is only at peace by having the experience that says I'm right more than I'm wrong.
I've heard of Pascal's Wager, and I think that was what my friend back in 1978 used to get me re-focused, but it's far beyond that now. Again, metaphysical becoming physical. I've found so many times when I depended on my physical senses or was driven by fear and ignored my metaphysical that I was disastrously wrong, so I pay much more attention to that gut instinct, which is much like the guilt when you don't listen to conscience. But it's like trying to learn to walk blind-folded. I'm still getting used to it. I'd much rather use my eyes but, there's an actually more certain way to me now and I'm wreaked for depending on my eyes. So I'm finding I consider what my physical senses say to me when, for instance, I'm reading the news, but I look to my gut instinct for the "facts". But its not easy. And I've not even scratched the surface of scratching the surface when I consider much more remarkable "stunts" such as "3rd heaven" experiences and telling some cripple to stand up and walk, and he does just that.
My certainty of Atheism versus Christianity is much more certain than that, however.
However, from my arrogant and condescending perspective, I wonder how Jesus would respond to atheism. Not that atheism is in the same category, but it is a puzzle to me what His response to it would be especially in light of how he spoke to the woman brought to him for stoning. He originated the ordinance that called for her stoning, but did not stone her. Amazing. The ones in the crowd would be me and other christians, and we would be the ones slowly sneaking away, my gut instinct tells me.
She would have been correct if she said she felt guilt for the way she was living, though.
A point in passing, it is almost impossible, for comparisons, to find an example of real Christianity today in modern day christianity, in the church or in me, for that matter. That's not to excuse, but to defend Christianity. There may be pockets that would reflect Christianity, however, and if you looked overseas in some impoverished community you might find it. My gut feel tells me that the reason we don't see the wonders contemporary with the first century is because the conduct today of the church could not risk being copied. Sad to say, but, gut feel says I'm ok with saying that.
As for always being in a state of bliss, I wonder what that would be like. I can describe a deep sense of peace or comfort that, when I considered it for the first time last week, I realized it's there all the time, except for such times when I'm behind a slow driver and I'm late. I've learned to recognize that disruption and that difference in my state of mind to tell me, duhh, I need control or I will be in trouble. I'm not there yet, though.
As for no evidence that personality survives death, there is if you broaden your search to include what you now probably ridicule: the bible.

boomSLANG said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
boomSLANG said...

Dear S & S,

As far as I can see, in your latest post you've done nothing differently, nor "better", to advance your position, nor to indicate to me that your unique, personal, religious experiences - in conjunction with the colorful metaphorical language with which you describe them - is anything that exists outside your head.

S & S, BILLIONS of people claim to have such experiences with the supernatural, with such subjects ranging from ghosts-to-goblins; from "Jesus"-to-"Allah"; from "Nessie"-to-"Bigfoot"; from vampires-to-werewolves; from flying saucers-to-crop circles...and the list goes on, and on. Are you telling me that the best you can do is to tell me that your experiences are "real", and that everyone else is deluded?..the end? That everyone else has a proclivity to experiencing what's NOT really there, but not "S & S"??????? Golly gee, I hope not.

Additionally, you obviously have zero intention of agreeing that we simply disagree, as I previously threw out there as a suggestion. S & S, you are on a website that is cleary labeled "EX-Christian.net", complete with disclaimer, and myriad tesimonials of former Christians. In other words, since you're evidently not "getting it", I - we - have heard it all before, and in fact, many if not most former Christians believed for the same warm, fuzzy, subjective, non-evidential reasons that you believe right now. We changed our minds---GET. OVER. IT.

In any event, I have a few comments. Here they are...

You said....Seriously, my mind demands the proof-positive of objective physical scientific method type evidence and keeps searching until it gets something or it can begin producing the evidence for itself in cognitive dissonance, if I'm using that term correctly

Forgive me, but I haven't a fricking clue what you just said, nor even what you are attempting to say.

You...I've heard of Pascal's Wager, and I think that was what my friend back in 1978 used to get me re-focused, but it's far beyond that now.

I explained Pascal's Wager to you in my previous post. In light of that, I'm at a loss as to what you mean by "it's far beyond it". Have you sought out to find the religion with the hottest "hell", as to avoid it, and thus, adopt that religion as true?? If not, you are evidently willing to "stake your life"(your argument from before) that some other religion is not the One Universal Truth, hence, rendering Christianity false. Can you PROVE that your religion is true, and all other religious beliefs are incorrect, and thus, amount to figments of people's imaginations? If not, Pascal's Wager is moot; it fails.

You said...However, from my arrogant and condescending perspective, I wonder how Jesus would respond to atheism

What a silly, and pointless inquiry. S & S?...don't you know your "bible"? "Jesus", through his alleged "Prophetic", omniscient powers, foretold that there would be apostates, back-sliders, etc. In other words, "Jesus" knew that there would be "Atheists", and thus, it should be no shock to "Him", whatsoever. Not-to-mention, apostates are actually necessary in fulfilling biblical "Prophecy"!!! If that don't beat all.

You...As for no evidence that personality survives death, there is if you broaden your search to include what you now probably ridicule: the bible.

I hope you'll forgive me, in that, I cannot quite bring myself to believe that adopting blatantly circular philosophies will "broaden" my "search". What you are implicitly expecting me to believe, is...

1) The bible is true because it's the Word of God.

2) God exists because the bible says so.

3) Therefore, God exists.

4) Therefore, the bible is true.

Is that a fair assessment?

BTW, if you should come back, can you do a few things to fascilitate conversation? Can you address my rebuttals point-by-point, or at least, refer to, and quote one point at a time? If you refuse to do that, and opt on the mile-long smattering of non-evidential spiritual jargon approach, can you at least use an occasional paragraph break? Thanks in advance, champ.

SlowAndSteady said...

S & S, BILLIONS of people claim to have such experiences with the supernatural, with such subjects ranging from ghosts-to-goblins; from "Jesus"-to-"Allah"; from "Nessie"-to-"Bigfoot"; from vampires-to-werewolves; from flying saucers-to-crop circles...and the list goes on, and on. Are you telling me that the best you can do is to tell me that your experiences are "real", and that everyone else is deluded?..the end? That everyone else has a proclivity to experiencing what's NOT really there, but not "S & S"??????? Golly gee, I hope not.

I don't know about anyone else. I'm open minded, but really not interested. I'm relating something here to you that is real to me, and if you conclude it belongs in the garbage, that's our call.

Additionally, you obviously have zero intention of agreeing that we simply disagree, as I previously threw out there as a suggestion. S & S, you are on a website that is cleary labeled "EX-Christian.net", complete with disclaimer, and myriad tesimonials of former Christians. In other words, since you're evidently not "getting it", I - we - have heard it all before, and in fact, many if not most former Christians believed for the same warm, fuzzy, subjective, non-evidential reasons that you believe right now. We changed our minds---GET. OVER. IT.

Yes, I know you have changed your minds, and, I'm over it. If you don't want me to say anymore, I won't.

You said....Seriously, my mind demands the proof-positive of objective physical scientific method type evidence and keeps searching until it gets something or it can begin producing the evidence for itself in cognitive dissonance, if I'm using that term correctly

Forgive me, but I haven't a fricking clue what you just said, nor even what you are attempting to say.


You're forgiven, boom. I'm trying to say that my mind, before it can rationally accept it, requires tangible, physical evidence, not invisible fluff or "spiritual" sensing. My spirit, on the other hand, can see into the invisible, however, what it sees is subject to my mind's final verdict of whether it is rational or irrational. If my mind is "told" something by my spirit, my mind can, and does, override it, unless, by experience, my mind can see that there might be some validity in what my spirit "sees" or "hears". Also, my mind can be "forced" into accepting what it does not find rational and sickness of the mind will be the certain result. By force, I mean, for instance, the desperation brought about by wanting to have the same spiritual experiences as others in the peer group.

I explained Pascal's Wager to you in my previous post. In light of that, I'm at a loss as to what you mean by "it's far beyond it". Have you sought out to find the religion with the hottest "hell", as to avoid it, and thus, adopt that religion as true?? If not, you are evidently willing to "stake your life"(your argument from before) that some other religion is not the One Universal Truth, hence, rendering Christianity false. Can you PROVE that your religion is true, and all other religious beliefs are incorrect, and thus, amount to figments of people's imaginations? If not, Pascal's Wager is moot; it fails.

No, I doubt I can prove anything to you since my "proof" is more like a mile high pile of correspondence with a girl friend, not really filed in an orderly fashion (I'm creative). Which one letter proved to me she loves me? What would reading my mail to you do for you other than bore you to tears and cause you to wonder what the heck she sees in me?
I have proven it to myself beyond reasonable doubt, or to the point where my mind has been supplied sufficient evidence that it can process as rational and be satisfied with rather than be left in doubt or pretending it believes (illness). By being "beyond that now", I mean that I have made a progression from the rudiments of Pascal's Wager, which was really just an experiment. If the decision to keep on with what I was presuming could be God did not look promising, I could have turned back at any time.

You said...However, from my arrogant and condescending perspective, I wonder how Jesus would respond to atheism

What a silly, and pointless inquiry. S & S?...don't you know your "bible"? "Jesus", through his alleged "Prophetic", omniscient powers, foretold that there would be apostates, back-sliders, etc. In other words, "Jesus" knew that there would be "Atheists", and thus, it should be no shock to "Him", whatsoever. Not-to-mention, apostates are actually necessary in fulfilling biblical "Prophecy"!!! If that don't beat all.


Not really that silly, boom. Yes, I do know my bible and Jesus, in Mark, right after His resurrection, dealt with his own disciples as the atheists they had become in just a few short, agonizing hours. Without Jesus' "visit" they would have continued in that; after what they had just witnessed, they could no longer believe. No one can believe, or continue believing, without that help of a personal "visit".

I hope you'll forgive me, in that, I cannot quite bring myself to believe that adopting blatantly circular philosophies will "broaden" my "search". What you are implicitly expecting me to believe, is...

Expecting you to believe, boom? And end this "debate"? I'm enjoying this too much, and your l.o.l. humour. Much as I would like to hear you eventually say you do believe, boom, reality says you won't. Without a personal "visit", that is.

boomSLANG said...

S & S...Much as I would like to hear you eventually say you do believe, boom, reality says you won't.

Precisely. I couldn't have said it better, myself.

Adios!

AtheistToothFairy said...

S&S wrote:

Boom had said:That everyone else has a proclivity to experiencing what's NOT really there, but not "S & S"??????? Golly gee, I hope not.

S&S Replied: I don't know about anyone else. I'm open minded, but really not interested

----
I'd say this is the bottom line of why most xitans stay xtians.

They have a severe lack of curiosity ("interest") when it comes to evidence, unless of course if that evidence just happens along and at the same time, also supports their personal god belief system.

As an example, when it comes to UFO sightings of the non-earthly kind, most fundies I've read comments from, have no problem believing such things are not of this earth. So here they would SEEM to agree with those who wish to believe in extraterrestrial life forms.

However, unlike the many who are sure these are aliens from other solar systems, fundies will instantly deny that possibility, but at the same time insist they are demons playing tricks on us to further remove us from their xtian god.

Perhaps S&S, if your curiosity level were greater, you might start taking a closer look at the so called 'evidence' that other religions offer, that the many other realms of the supernatural lay claim to, and in so doing, you might discover what I did when I headed down that path.
I discovered there is zero evidence for any of these supernatural claims, including every god that man has invented, and that of course, includes your own xtian god.

Think of it this way, if there exists some supernatural god being, be that the xtian god or other god, and it's involved in the affairs of humankind, then there would be SOMETHING for evidence that could be tested and proven out, other than the things that exists solely within the realm of one's own thoughts and feelings.

Once you start to take notice that all these supernatural claims have no substance to back them up with, it's not a very far reach to realize that the xitan god keeps the same company as the rest of these false human claims.

On the other hand, if you wish to continue to use faith alone to support your bible god's existence, then you should stop right now from reading anything to the contrary, or talking to folks like us, who might make you start looking outside your faith bubble.

Once you are on the outside of the faith bubble and into the world of reality, trust me, you'll never be able to return !!


ATF (Who once upon a time, was very sure that supernatural things existed; but got wiser with age)

SlowAndSteady said...

Adios, boom'.

ATF, you saidS&S wrote:Boom had said:That everyone else has a proclivity to experiencing what's NOT really there, but not "S & S"??????? Golly gee, I hope not. S&S Replied: I don't know about anyone else. I'm open minded, but really not interested----I'd say this is the bottom line of why most xitans stay xtians. They have a severe lack of curiosity ("interest") when it comes to evidence, unless of course if that evidence just happens along and at the same time, also supports their personal god belief system. As an example, when it comes to UFO sightings of the non-earthly kind, most fundies I've read comments from, have no problem believing such things are not of this earth. So here they would SEEM to agree with those who wish to believe in extraterrestrial life forms. However, unlike the many who are sure these are aliens from other solar systems, fundies will instantly deny that possibility, but at the same time insist they are demons playing tricks on us to further remove us from their xtian god.

It seems to me, from the numbers of "close encounters' reported over the years, there should be ample evidence of extraterrestrials and since I have not seen any myself nor heard of any credible evidence, it's too inconclusive to make a final call on it. Meanwhile, I'm open to it if it is extraterrestrials. I don't support the notion that it's demon activity. However, if they are actually extraterrestrials, I don't think they would be dumb enough to try and communicate with us humans if they knew anything about us. We kill each other way too easily. And they would know that once we found out which galaxy they were from and that it probably supports human life, we would be there to claim the land as our own in a heartbeat light-year, then put them on reserves until they could speak our language and follow our customs. If they are smart enough to make crop circles, and any MIT grad can do that using existing drone technology equipped with GPS, they would have to be smart enough to kill us before we kill them, so there's still hope for us humans that no extraterrestrial has spotted us yet.

Perhaps S&S, if your curiosity level were greater...

It's not - I found gold and alloy gold is now more than obvious to me - I'll stay with the gold. Besides, I'm not looking for evidence. I've found what I'm looking for. Why would I continue to look for evidence? Besides, God reaches me in a way that is far superior to physical evidence.

Think of it this way, if there exists some supernatural god being, be that the xtian god or other god, and it's involved in the affairs of humankind, then there would be SOMETHING for evidence that could be tested and proven out, other than the things that exists solely within the realm of one's own thoughts and feelings.

There is significant evidence in the bible, but you will not rule that as credible evidence and so, the way to finding it is blocked to you. On purpose. In a way, it's like pirate treasure and only those that think like a pirate can crack the code and enter. Go ahead and say that I'm now calling God a 20 something party animal pirate. But, rest assured, Captain ATF, you shall not pass because you have been tripped up by the 20 something pirate called the stumbling block and rock of offense.

On the other hand, if you wish to continue to use faith alone to support your bible god's existence, then you should stop right now from reading anything to the contrary, or talking to folks like us, who might make you start looking outside your faith bubble. Once you are on the outside of the faith bubble and into the world of reality, trust me, you'll never be able to return!! ATF (Who once upon a time, was very sure that supernatural things existed; but got wiser with age)

What faith bubble? ATF, I see and hear ample evidence all around me, everyday and everywhere in the world that says there is no God. So what? If God chooses to be invisible and only visible to you on His terms, then you can't say that particular God does not exist. You can only say that God, defined by your parameters, does not exist. Furthermore, what if God really is a pirate and wants to keel haul you? Just because you think that is just too ridiculous to believe doesn't mean its not true. Some lost tribe in the Amazon would probably make soup out of one of their own if he told them he saw an F18 fighter up close and talked to the pilot. Just because those that never saw it thought it was too ridiculous to believe doesn't logically support the claim that the F18 does not exist.

webmdave said...

S&S wrote, "I'm not looking for evidence. I've found what I'm looking for. Why would I continue to look for evidence? Besides, God reaches me in a way that is far superior to physical evidence."

So, S&S, your God reaches you in some way that is far superior to the physical. Since you are a physical human being, what do you use to perceive this God of yours? It can't be your brain; that's physical. It can't be your emotions; that's also physical. I know! I bet you use your SPIRIT MAN to commune with your deity.

That's it, isn't it? Your Spirit Man?

If so, then where is the evidence that you have an immaterial spirit housed somewhere in your physical body? Don't tell me... You don't need evidence that you have a spirit, because your GOD provides all the evidence you need that your spirit exists, right?

Of all the ways in the world there are to collect and accumulate information, faith is by far the worst way to do it. You, S&S, have faith -- emotional, unsupported, self-delusional faith. Many Muslims talk just like you -- they have stumbled onto the Gold of Allah and they need look no further. "Who would want to seek fool's gold when a treasure has already been found?"

Personally, S&S, I could care less what you believe or how you perceive reality. My father-in-law believes that God speaks to him "with an audible voice" from time to time. I'm used to living in peace with the severely deluded. However, you need to get one thing straight: It falls to the one making the positive claim to provide evidence of the claim. For instance, it is up to scientists to provide evidence that evolution is true before anyone should be expected to pay any attention to it.

Say this out loud: "Just because there is no physical evidence that evolution is true doesn't mean it's not true!"

Doesn't that sound stupid?

How about this: "Just because there is no evidence that the old pagan gods ever existed, that doesn't mean they don't exist!"

Retarded, right?

You are claiming not only that your favorite deity exists, but that you have a warm and personal relationship with it. OK, fine. Now you want people to believe you and believe in your god without one shred of physical evidence?

I have a house in the Keys I'd like to sell you. I have no physical evidence to provide that the place exists, but I've been there in a dream and know with full assurance in my heart that it exists. Let me tell you, it's a wonderful property and the price is very reasonable. Please send me $100,000 and you can experience the joy of ownership.

boomSLANG said...

S & S...Besides, I'm not looking for evidence. I've found what I'm looking for. Why would I continue to look for evidence?

Once again, it speaks for itself.(and loudly)

SlowAndSteady said...

Ok, let's call it a day and agree to disagree, rather than me repeating everything I've said and you doing the same in return.
Bye boom, Webmdave, ATF, srongernow, godsfavoritecolour and all others on this site who will express the same views.
-S&S

Steven Bently said...

S&S.."I don't think they would be dumb enough to try and communicate with us humans if they knew anything about us. We kill each other way too easily. And they would know that once we found out which galaxy they were from and that it probably supports human life, we would be there to claim the land as our own in a heartbeat light-year, then put them on reserves until they could speak our language and follow our customs."

Oh you mean like the white man did when he brought over his Bible religion to this country and killed mostly all the Native Americans and stole all their land and claimed this country for his own?

The murderious religion that you worship?

Yeah, please go away you jerk!

AtheistToothFairy said...

SlowAndSteady said...
It seems to me, from the numbers of "close encounters' reported over the years, there should be ample evidence of extraterrestrials and since I have not seen any myself nor heard of any credible evidence, it's too inconclusive to make a final call on it
----
S&S,

I realize that you most likely are done with all of us, but after reading your remarks to me this past week, I feel I have to answer them.

I don't recall your age, but I would guess you are still young?
When someone with a discerning mind, that also has been around this earth for many decades, once again hears a claim for some alien spacecraft visit(s), we tend to chuckle about it.

You are correct though, if we've had hundreds (thousands?) of "close encounters" since the 1950's era until present day, surely by now we would have plenty of credible evidence to point at, yes?
Alas, there is **NO** credible evidence to support these claims.
The so called evidence that we do have after all these decades, consist of blurry pictures, hearsay stories of sightings, stories from 'victims' who are sure that they were abducted from their beds/cars and had invasive experiments done on them; usually of a sexual nature.

Some of these 'abducted' folks will swear the aliens implanted some non-eartly device in their body and some of those, will insist upon having X-rays or Cat-Scans to verify the implant. The results of these tests either show nothing or sometimes lead to having the object removed, whereupon it's ALWAYS found to be of an earthly nature.

Sometimes women will swear they have been impregnated by these aliens, but either land up having a perfectly normal human baby, or will testify that they had been pregnant, but the aliens returned and stole the infant from them.
Given these aliens are claimed to appear very non-human, one would expect to see some of these women give birth to a hybrid baby, but not one of these has ever been verified by any professional.

Oddly enough, the majority of these alien abductions tend to occur when the victim is either sleeping or sleep deprived. The common theme tends to be that the were aware but yet unable to move or even scream. This is clearly a form of sleep paralysis, nothing more!!

So the reason that YOU haven't heard/seen any credible evidence, is because, it does NOT exists; plain and simple.
It's the same reason these claims never make it into the national news, other than in the tabloids. If such frequent episodes of sightings and/or abductions were of a extraterrestrial reality, statistically we would have had many verified reports in the news over these past 5 plus decades.

> Meanwhile, I'm open to it if it is extraterrestrials.

Then you really need to do some independent research on this matter so you can rest easy that earth hasn't been invaded.

>I don't support the notion that it's demon activity.

Well that is good news, but I have to tell you that many of your xtian clan, are certain that there is no intelligent life on other planets in the universe and that Satan's demons are playing tricks on us. The goal here would be the same as these demons planting fossils all over the earth, so that most of us will turn our backs on the xtian god and see other means to account for our own existence.
They are clearly deluded in such crazy thinking.

>However, if they are actually extraterrestrials, I don't think they would be dumb enough to try and communicate with us humans if they knew anything about us. We kill each other way too easily.

Oh, but UFO buffs make claims all the time, that these aliens are communicating with us.
If these aliens are so vastly advanced to travel across many light years to reach this earth, why would they choose not to communicate, yet let themselves be seen and OFTEN to?

>And they would know that once we found out which galaxy they were from and that it probably supports human life, we would be there to claim the land as our own in a heartbeat light-year, then put them on reserves until they could speak our language and follow our customs.

Wait, are you saying that IF these aliens are real, IF we somehow were to discover what galaxy they originated from, that we earthlings would do what....Steal their spaceships and load them up with soldiers, travel to the alien galaxy/planet and then using their own technology against them, take over their planet and push our own beliefs/customs on these aliens?

Excuse me S&S, but I really think that you have been reading far too many sci-fi books or something, to believe such a plan would be viable.
There are so many flaws with your idea here, that I don't even know where to begin to show you how ridiculous this idea is.
I guess this form of thinking on your part here, greatly explains why you can buy into the bible god story so EASILY!!

>If they are smart enough to make crop circles, and any MIT grad can do that using existing drone technology equipped with GPS, they would have to be smart enough to kill us before we kill them, so there's still hope for us humans that no extraterrestrial has spotted us yet.

S&S...have you heard of the acronym KISS before?
It stands for Keep It Simple Stupid.
One does not need some advanced drone with a GPS to form crop circles !!
It's vastly more simple than this.

You only need some rope and a heavy board to make crop circles.
Many of these crop circles were nothing more than simple pranks and some of those responsible for making them, actually landed up showing us how they did it.
No one today, with half a brain, believes these crop circles were made by non-human means.

Again, you really NEED to research these things before you make such naive statement, okay?

You do have a point however, in that advanced aliens (if they did exist) could easily lay waste to our planet, given we already have the power with our H-bombs to do the same.

So then tell me, if these aliens are real and haven't laid waste to our earth and yet seem to let themselves be seen all the time and abduct us from time to time, then why do they do like your god does, and spend so much energy on hiding from us in a degree that we can't verify their existence with any credible evidence?
Funny how all these supernatural things always have an odd way of hiding the evidence from anyone seeking to verify a claim, and yes, that would include your supernatural god being as well.

>>ATF: Perhaps S&S, if your curiosity level were greater...

>It's not - I found gold and alloy gold is now more than obvious to me - I'll stay with the gold. Besides, I'm not looking for evidence. I've found what I'm looking for. Why would I continue to look for evidence? Besides, God reaches me in a way that is far superior to physical evidence.

I find it very sad that you hide yourself away in a god-closet, to what, protect yourself from finding out what evidence there is for reality?
You sound like a child under their bed, with their eye's tightly closed, hiding from the invisible bogie-man. As long as they can't see, as long as they hide, the monster won't find them.
So hide from reality if you wish to S&S, but you better hope that reality doesn't find you one day instead, for then you will recognize how much of your life you have wasted in your god delusion.

>There is significant evidence in the bible, but you will not rule that as credible evidence and so, the way to finding it is blocked to you. On purpose. In a way, it's like pirate treasure and only those that think like a pirate can crack the code and enter. Go ahead and say that I'm now calling God a 20 something party animal pirate. But, rest assured, Captain ATF, you shall not pass because you have been tripped up by the 20 something pirate called the stumbling block and rock of offense.

Hey, I kind of like that name, "Captain ATF".
Don't worry S&S, I won't make you "salute" me, like your god insist upon from his followers [g]

As far as your bible having credible evidence goes.
Unless your bible can't point to something OUTSIDE itself as evidence, then you are using your bible to support your bible, which is circular.
To be sure, merely making mention of certain places/people that existed in those days, is far from being evidence for anything extraordinary.
Worse, your bible refers to people that don't exists beyond the pages of the bible and some of the places it speak about, either never existed, or existed in a different time of history than your bible demonstrates.

In regards to your example of a pirates treasure.
First off, if such a treasure existed, once it was found one could know it was real and demonstrate it's reality to anyone who might inquire about it.
Finding your god is more like chasing some hearsay invisible treasure, where even if found by a believer, can never be shown to exists in our earthly reality.
Therefore, we are back to having FAITH when it comes to believing in your supernatural god being, aren't we?

If on the very remote chance you are correct about your god, then he's done a piss-poor job of showing himself to anyone with a discerning mind and exactly how is it our fault that a lot of us require evidence before believing in what only seems to be a fairy tale?
Are you saying that your god will punish every person who ever lived, who either never heard of your god, or couldn't find enough reason to believe in it's existence?

Why should such a personality trait to question everything, be sufficient reason for someone to be sent to hell to burn for all time?
Why does your god insist that only those with a sheep personality are worthy of a blissful heavenly existence?
Do you see anything wrong with this picture, hmmmm
I SURE DO!!


>What faith bubble? ATF, I see and hear ample evidence all around me, everyday and everywhere in the world that says there is no God. So what? If God chooses to be invisible and only visible to you on His terms, then you can't say that particular God does not exist.

The faith bubble I'm speaking about is the one you live in S&S.
It stops you cold from seeing anything outside of it's walls.
The "ample" evidence you see all around you, is nothing but an illusion that you have molded into evidence for your god.
You skew what you see so it can fit into your bible god story, rather than looking at things objectively. You look around and attribute all the pretty things on this earth to god, while either ignoring the ugly things or insisting they were caused by the sin of man.

You most likely believe humans are of a perfect design, for how could a god create a flawed creature, right. Yet one can easily point to the many flaws in our human bodies, that have nothing to do with our "sinful nature", you would speak about.
Did sin give us an appendix that sometimes kills people?
Why did god design us so that we can suffocate while eating?
Why do our eye's have blind spots.....couldn't god design an eye without this flaw?

As far as your god having terms...

Yes, it sure seems that he does have some very strange terms when it comes to showing himself to his creation, yet in olden days, he showed himself OFTEN to mankind and all without screwing up our free-will, right?
Funny how the more advanced in knowledge mankind becomes, the more your god recedes into oblivion. Surely this is more than mere coincidence, don't you think?
Doesn't god take notice that he's fading away and why does he choose to just sit back and do nothing about it?
How about giving us skeptics some really cool hints of his existence, just enough hinting so we can justify that some god COULD exists out there.
Instead, he offers NADA, WHY?

>You can only say that God, defined by your parameters, does not exist.

Yes, my parameters.
I guess my parameters for god's existence are so demanding and strange to your god, that he just chooses to ignore them.
Funny, but it's not like we are asking for some special evidence from your god, but rather that your god provide us with the same type evidence we would want to prove an apple exists on my dining room table.

There are so MANY things your god could do to provide us enough evidence of something supernatural, yet he does nothing on his own behalf.
Heck, even without showing himself directly, he could skew the statistics of human life aspect so greatly, that it would be clear that something non-earthly was happening.
All the evidence he provides us today, greatly mimics mere coincidental events, such as god creating that perfect parking space or curing our sore throat, but he never restores a torn off leg, now does he?

The evidence you believe comes from god, is no better than any other religion or woo-woo organization has going for it. They have exactly the same evidence that you provide us, so either all of you supernatural believers are right, or all of you are all wrong. Now which is more likely the case, hmmm

>Furthermore, what if God really is a pirate and wants to keel haul you? Just because you think that is just too ridiculous to believe doesn't mean its not true. Some lost tribe in the Amazon would probably make soup out of one of their own if he told them he saw an F18 fighter up close and talked to the pilot. Just because those that never saw it thought it was too ridiculous to believe doesn't logically support the claim that the F18 does not exist.

The difference is that anyone can SEE and HEAR an F18 fighter jet.
If anyone had doubts, it wouldn't be very difficult to prove that jet's existence, right.
Given the common human propensity to believe in things beyond our common existence, I doubt this tribal person would be made into soup for telling such a story.
It's far more likely that he would be believed and they would fashion a god statue from his description of the jet.

If god is real and wants to keel-haul us, then so be it.
I would never submit to any god being that would treat their creation in such a manner, just for not wanting to bow down and kiss their royal ass.
For sure, I'm not about to play that game of playing-it-safe, by deluding myself into "worshipping" something, that won't show itself to me.
Worse, why would any god let such a person into it's heaven, just because they pretended to believe in some god being?

Either one swallows this god story in whole, or one rejects such a possibility.
I don't believe one can worship a god in a half-assed manner and get away with it, not if god is anything like the one from your bible storybook.
Your god is quite demanding and strict when it comes to his followers, which is strange in itself, that a loving god would behave in such a childish egocentric manner.

Good luck in your god delusion S&S.
May reason find your brain one sunny day in the near future !!


ATF (Who is headed out to make a custom crop-circle that says, "If you believe in god, then you are too naive to visit our alien planet")

Pageviews this week: