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  1. #111
    Senior Member Feops's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by juggernaut View Post
    I think you're being a bit unfair to the theists. It's far more black and white to the atheists that I've encountered. Also the example you used is somewhat lacking. The empirical evidence that the theist uses to support his position is epistemically accessible to the atheist. The atheist just doesn't see it as evidence. Think here of Paley's Watchmaker. If you're not down with the teleological account you can go back to St. Anselm's "greatest possible being" or the Platonic "unmoved mover". Invoking absurd examples to empirically discredit the believer is shifty move that many atheists make. They misrepresent the true theist's position in order to make claims about the lack of rationality inherent in it. As a rational being, I find that problematic. The best an empiricist can do with a concept of god is deny it on the grounds of probability, but that's an inductive claim and inductive claims are, necessarily, limited in their scope of applicability to the natural world. If there's a supernatural being somehow responsible for it all we cannot have direct epistemic access to it simply because it is supernatural. You cannot prove or disprove it exists, because you cannot do anything at all with it, empirically. The theist and atheist end up being in the exact same place logically. The theist takes the leap of faith in one direction, the atheist in the other. The rest of us sit here wondering what the hell everyone is so excited about.
    Rather than hack this apart point by point, as I dislike doing, I'm going to cherry pick one particular part.

    "If there's a supernatural being somehow responsible for it all we cannot have direct epistemic access to it simply because it is supernatural. You cannot prove or disprove it exists, because you cannot do anything at all with it, empirically."

    You've basically circled around to say that we cannot prove the supernatural because the supernatural is beyond proving. Why then is my example (and I'll grand it's absurd) invalidated? I could list any possible combination of supernatural forces, which would expect any manner of behavior of humans, to any result in a hypothetical afterlife, and there would be no way to disprove my assertion. If the supernatural could indeed be anything, then there are infinite possibilities. If there are infinite possibilities, then we don't even have a starting point on how it all works, how we should act, who we should worship, etc.

    If you must have a more grounded example, take any of the old, dead religions, that once had large and educated followings, but no one gives serious consideration today. How does a religion become outdated? How can you be certain that their gods and their teachings are invalid and won't apply to you?

    Personally I'm not married to the notion of being an atheist. I think it would offer considerable peace of mind to have some sense of how things are and how things will be. I'd love to know. I just haven't seen anything that convinces me that religion x, y, or z is a fundamental truth to the exclusion of other hypothetical truths.

  2. #112
    now! in shell form INA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackmail! View Post
    Again, I don't care!

    I know these arguments, but I don't find them to be very interesting and worth our attention because they deeply delve into metaphysics. Even that dear Gödel could be wildly irrational, sometimes.

    I'm not here to convince you, I'm not here to convince anybody.

    The form of atheism used by Russel is called practical atheism. But there are hundreds of other forms of atheism, I guess you know them, since the earliest form of Euclide's assertorical argument.

    We all know this. At least we should. So why argue?
    Because atheists are oppressive supercilious assholes, is what I'm gathering from the rantings in this thread.
    /bubble.

  3. #113
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by juggernaut View Post
    You and I actually share very similar beliefs on this matter.
    Frankly, I don't think so. I've noticed you rather used every possible theistic arguments through hidden ways, and you desperatly seem to want that we focus on them.

    We're not that stupid, you know.
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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  4. #114
    Phoenix Incarnate Sentura's Avatar
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    this thread is proof that nothing good will come of religious debates on the internet.
    i hunt INXPs for bounty
    FUNCTION ORDER FOR THOSE THAT CANNOT UNDERSTAND WHAT ENXP MEANS: Ne > Ni > Fi=Ti > *

    ...people tell me i have wildfires in my eyes

  5. #115
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    I can see why some people are atheists. My brother has become one after discovering his homosexuality. I'm a Catholic Christian, but I don't agree with all of the hate views involved with my religion. I reject their reality and substitute my own.

  6. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feops View Post
    Rather than hack this apart point by point, as I dislike doing, I'm going to cherry pick one particular part.

    "If there's a supernatural being somehow responsible for it all we cannot have direct epistemic access to it simply because it is supernatural. You cannot prove or disprove it exists, because you cannot do anything at all with it, empirically."

    You've basically circled around to say that we cannot prove the supernatural because the supernatural is beyond proving. Why then is my example (and I'll grand it's absurd) invalidated? I could list any possible combination of supernatural forces, which would expect any manner of behavior of humans, to any result in a hypothetical afterlife, and there would be no way to disprove my assertion. If the supernatural could indeed be anything, then there are infinite possibilities. If there are infinite possibilities, then we don't even have a starting point on how it all works, how we should act, who we should worship, etc.

    If you must have a more grounded example, take any of the old, dead religions, that once had large and educated followings, but no one gives serious consideration today. How does a religion become outdated? How can you be certain that their gods and their teachings are invalid and won't apply to you?

    Personally I'm not married to the notion of being an atheist. I think it would offer considerable peace of mind to have some sense of how things are and how things will be. I'd love to know. I just haven't seen anything that convinces me that religion x, y, or z is a fundamental truth to the exclusion of other hypothetical truths.
    And that, dear friends, is why I will die agnostic.

    Quote Originally Posted by InaF3157 View Post
    Because atheists are oppressive supercilious assholes, is what I'm gathering from the rantings in this thread.
    /bubble.
    No, just self-defeating.

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackmail! View Post
    Frankly, I don't think so. I've noticed you rather used every possible theistic arguments through hidden ways, and you desperatly seem to want that we focus on them.

    We're not that stupid, you know.
    Apparently you are. Costrin has already seen my position previously and was actually kind enough to offer me a more accurate label, as pointed out earlier in this thread.

  7. #117
    now! in shell form INA's Avatar
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    yeah, this thread turned into a masturbatory exercise that strayed from its purpose.

    But to circle back to the topic -- Atheists are not ill-regarded because of how vocal they are. They are ill-regarded whether or not they are militant because people who are theist often/usually do not separate being theistic and being ethical or good. Further, most people have a deep need for religion and consider those who appear to lack this need arrogant and untrustworthy by this fact alone.

  8. #118
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by juggernaut View Post
    Apparently you are. Costrin has already seen my position previously and was actually kind enough to offer me a more accurate label, as pointed out earlier in this thread.
    I think you're trying to manipulate us, and that you're very sly, somehow.

    Again, the category of the arguments you want us to focus on are ONLY theistic ones. Furthermore, you want us to think like a theist, to understand the theistic mind... And yet, you pretend to be an agnostic.

    That's slyness.

    ---

    You know, the various ontological arguments, I had to eat those stupidities for years. And they lead to nowhere, they are tautological and vain. So why should we bother discussing them?

    ---

    And the differences between you and me, it's not only a question of beliefs, but rather of attitude.
    You want to proselytize. I don't want to.
    You persuaded you're right and you want that everybody knows that. I don't care.

    I'm not that insecure.
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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  9. #119
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    Please show me a single argument I've provided for the existence of god without it's accompanying objections. I actually gave you links to the arguments against the very strongest arguments for god's existence. What exactly have I been proselytizing? To stop using lame arguments if you want to be heard? If that's proselytizing then, here, please take this pamphlet.

  10. #120
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by juggernaut View Post
    Please show me a single argument I've provided for the existence of god without it's accompanying objections. I actually gave you links to the arguments against the very strongest arguments for god's existence. What exactly have I been proselytizing? To stop using lame arguments if you want to be heard? If that's proselytizing then, here, please take this pamphlet.
    Tell me, why are you so fascinated with true atheists?

    What do you want us to understand?
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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