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Let's talk the dislike of religion and spirituality.

Vendrah

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I am with [MENTION=29287]Obfuscate[/MENTION] but I think that I can explain his point in a more simple way.

Basically, you can categorize belief in God in 3 general categories:
1) You firmly believe in God ("I do not believe, I know").
2) You firmly disbelieve in God ("I know there is no God, with the same conviction as Jung knows there is one").
3) You neither disbelieve or believe, you simply do not know and do not have conviction.

Number 1 is Theist, including 'stock' Theism and all religions.
Number 2 is Atheism.
Number 3 is Agnosticism.

Number 1 is some sort of dogma, there is certainty: God exists.
Number 3 is also some sort of dogma, there is certainty as well: God does not exist.
Number 2 is not under some sort of dogma, instead is under doubt ('I do not know if God exists').
Number 3 can also be seem as a belief because it is dogmatic, certain and firm, as number 1.

While Number 2, Agnosticism can be a lot varied.
I like the scale you post because it shows some of the tons of Agnosticism.
And we are talking about God, not an afterlife - actually, these concepts that are usually bring together can be separated. There can be afterlife without God, and there can be a God without an afterlife (this latter a lot of God believers would find an absurd).

I also need to reinforce that Jung did suggested, although I might not read his belief directly, that there is a general idea of God - a more abstract and general form of God. Although we have a tendency to think God always in Christian or in cousins beliefs, there is such notion in Islam or in other religions, and these paints God differently. And there is the pure abstract form of God - one that does not belong to any religion but to some sort of concepts and, sometimes, by some few morals (which in general I like to read about).

1. Strong theist 100% probability of God. In the words of Carl Jung: "I do not believe, I know"
2. De facto theist Very high probability but short of 100%. "I don't know for certain, but I strongly believe in God and live my life on the assumption that he is there"
3. Leaning towards theism Higher than 50% but not very high. "I am very uncertain, but I am inclined to believe in God"
4. Completely impartial Exactly 50%. "God's existence and non-existence are exactly equiprobable"
5. Leaning towards atheism Lower than 50% but not very low. "I do not know whether God exists but I'm inclined to be skeptical"
6. De facto atheist Very low probability, but short of zero. "I don't know for certain but I think God is very improbable, and I live my life on the assumption that he is not there"
7. Strong atheist "I know there is no God, with the same conviction as Jung knows there is one"

I can say that I am 6 in terms of believing in a God that is and always been, simultaneously, perfect, "kind" (a "good person", except that it is not a person), benevolent, all-mighty powerful and present, because if God is and always been perfect, kind, benevolent, all-mighty powerful and present, then there would not be any suffering (I could not be tortured in any ways) and using the Devil or 'human free will' as an excuse does not cut for me.

However, I am 4 in terms of believing there is a God, either not much kind and with some cruelty (which I fear a lot tbh) (don't forget that Zeus is not painted on the western as kind a lot of times), or might not be all-mighty powerful or is just absent for some odd reason.

I am 3 in for an afterlife, and I also think that there might be "higher power(s)" that are not exactly God, spiritual things, and my afterlife notion is veeerryyy loose, so we can think of the force, 'higher' souls, etc...

In terms of wishes, I do actually want that a very God good exists and an afterlife..
 

Obfuscate

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"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" is a position for which statistical likelihoods are irrelevant, a completely different mental process for positions reliant on measurable likelihoods. Consider that the difference between a statistically supported assumption and a non-statistically supported assumption is significant enough to not force both into the same category of "belief". If one "belief" is reliant on a notion being extremely likely statistically, that infers that new evidence would readily change the position because it is mapped to externally justifiable probabilities. The position does not exist as a closed mental circuit that denies reason and likelihoods. The belief that dinosaurs actually do exist in a hidden bunker does not rely on its statistical probability and so by its nature would resist revision. There is possibly no condition that could change the position of such a belief because you can prove they aren't in one bunker, but what about the next imagined bunker?

There are different levels of "belief" that are fundamentally different, so that forcing them into the same category creates a distorted notion.

Edit: consider that there are "beliefs" that are not primary reliant on externally derived credibility and which resist revision, and then there are "working assumptions" that function as beliefs but are reliant on externally validating measures and as a result they respond to ongoing revision. This is distinct from both "belief" and "agnosticism" which implies a notion is unknowable.

the arbitrary position i selected was that that there were no dinosaurs stowed away in a bunker... barring statistical evidence as an argument (there is no math based on fact to support or deny the evidence of the divine), is there any other reason? choosing a fanciful definition of faith doesn't negate that at the core these things are equivalent... okay, lets return to the dinosaur example (as revised by you)... each place checked and confirmed to not contain dinosaurs would not change the presence or absence of dinosaurs in other locations... even if the entirety of antarctica was checked using modern equipment the dino believer could choose to believe that the scientific advancements of the dinosaurs could produce a shelter that wasn't detectable with insturments... or that the dinosaurs were at a depth that was undetectable... or any other number of theories... in any case there is no direct evidence that dinosaurs were capable or incapable of this... there is no evidence from which to build a theory concerning either the possibility or the lack there of... it is simply that it is easier to see what is left of the dinosaurs and assume it is all there is to see... with the idea of a god or creator the only empirical evidence is that something exists (which isn't direct evidence): the presence of something instead of nothing... there is nothing to suggest the initial appearance of matter came from anywhere... to claim that there is a statiscal basis for any conclusion is foolhardy... there is no "externally justifiable probability" in this matter... there is no evidence of a time before matter was... there is no way to trace from whence it came... it appears to be expanding... choosing any stance beyond a claim not to know is adopting a belief... one could claim evidence as "statistical" in terms of why matter is flying apart, but the mere existence of it begs the question: why is there matter at all? why something instead of nothing? saying that the absence of god is a mathematical likelyhood is like me saying it is mathematically immensely more likely that matter should have never existed at all or that the appearance of matter was a mathmatical certainty... to be blunt, there is no way to make an empirical argument for the absence or presence of god at this time... what differentiates truth from belief is undeniable proof... no stance concerning this has proof... which would make atheism *drumroll* a belief...
 

Siúil a Rúin

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the arbitrary position i selected was that that there were no dinosaurs stowed away in a bunker... barring statistical evidence as an argument (there is no math based on fact to support or deny the evidence of the divine), is there any other reason? choosing a fanciful definition of faith doesn't negate that at the core these things are equivalent... okay, lets return to the dinosaur example (as revised by you)... each place checked and confirmed to not contain dinosaurs would not change the presence or absence of dinosaurs in other locations... even if the entirety of antarctica was checked using modern equipment the dino believer could choose to believe that the scientific advancements of the dinosaurs could produce a shelter that wasn't detectable with insturments... or that the dinosaurs were at a depth that was undetectable... or any other number of theories... in any case there is no direct evidence that dinosaurs were capable or incapable of this... there is no evidence from which to build a theory concerning either the possibility or the lack there of... it is simply that it is easier to see what is left of the dinosaurs and assume it is all there is to see...
There are two issues here. The first relates to the analogy argument you presented. My point is that framing belief as essentially the same cognitive process in the two following claims is a way to distort a sense of credibility. It doesn't matter if we are talking about dinosaurs in a bunker or the flying spaghetti monster.

Position 1: Belief in an absurd unlikelihood, claiming its possibility based on its non-verifiability, but ignoring external measure to infer its credibility. This is blind faith, holding onto a notion without referencing evidence, even inferred evidence like probabilities.

Position 2: Belief that an absurd unlikelihood is false, claiming its lack of existence based on externally derived probabilities. This is a working assumption, and these are generally required to further develop ideas and relate to reality. When any notion requires externally verifiable credibility, even statistical probabilities, then it is more like a hypothesis than a belief because externally derived credibility for the notion leaves it open to revision.

Framing these two cognitive processes as equivalent, as "belief" is a way to increase the credibility of the absurd, and diminish the credibility of the responsible conclusion.

Many debates take on this semantic framework:
1. A word is presented with a broader definition (in this case "belief")
2. Arguments are presented to show the contents of the definition have enough distinctions to warrant different terms.
3. Arguments are presented to show that the contents of the definition contain similarities.

In this debate yes, there is a similarity that an assumption has to be made without 100% verification, but that does not mean the cognitive process are equivalent.


with the idea of a god or creator the only empirical evidence is that something exists (which isn't direct evidence): the presence of something instead of nothing... there is nothing to suggest the initial appearance of matter came from anywhere... to claim that there is a statiscal basis for any conclusion is foolhardy... there is no "externally justifiable probability" in this matter... there is no evidence of a time before matter was... there is no way to trace from whence it came... it appears to be expanding... choosing any stance beyond a claim not to know is adopting a belief... one could claim evidence as "statistical" in terms of why matter is flying apart, but the mere existence of it begs the question: why is there matter at all? why something instead of nothing? saying that the absence of god is a mathematical likelyhood is like me saying it is mathematically immensely more likely that matter should have never existed at all or that the appearance of matter was a mathmatical certainty... to be blunt, there is no way to make an empirical argument for the absence or presence of god at this time... what differentiates truth from belief is undeniable proof... no stance concerning this has proof... which would make atheism *drumroll* a belief...
This is where the initial analogies of embracing or rejecting absurd assumptions when they cannot be 100% verified or dismissed show their limitations.

The term "god" is even more confused, distorted, and messy than the term "belief". To distill this debate, consider that the more specific notions are placed on the concept of "god", the more it fits into these analogies presented earlier. The less distinct the definition of "god" the more it takes on the true character of agnosticism, the unknowable. Each specific quality assigned to the notion of "god" makes its existence less probable.
 

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There are two issues here. The first relates to the analogy argument you presented. My point is that framing belief as essentially the same cognitive process in the two following claims is a way to distort a sense of credibility. It doesn't matter if we are talking about dinosaurs in a bunker or the flying spaghetti monster.

Position 1: Belief in an absurd unlikelihood, claiming its possibility based on its non-verifiability, but ignoring external measure to infer its credibility. This is blind faith, holding onto a notion without referencing evidence, even inferred evidence like probabilities.

Position 2: Belief that an absurd unlikelihood is false, claiming its lack of existence based on externally derived probabilities. This is a working assumption, and these are generally required to further develop ideas and relate to reality. When any notion requires externally verifiable credibility, even statistical probabilities, then it is more like a hypothesis than a belief because externally derived credibility for the notion leaves it open to revision.

Framing these two cognitive processes as equivalent, as "belief" is a way to increase the credibility of the absurd, and diminish the credibility of the responsible conclusion.

Many debates take on this semantic framework:
1. A word is presented with a broader definition (in this case "belief")
2. Arguments are presented to show the contents of the definition have enough distinctions to warrant different terms.
3. Arguments are presented to show that the contents of the definition contain similarities.

In this debate yes, there is a similarity that an assumption has to be made without 100% verification, but that does not mean the cognitive process are equivalent.



This is where the initial analogies of embracing or rejecting absurd assumptions when they cannot be 100% verified or dismissed show their limitations.

The term "god" is even more confused, distorted, and messy than the term "belief". To distill this debate, consider that the more specific notions are placed on the concept of "god", the more it fits into these analogies presented earlier. The less distinct the definition of "god" the more it takes on the true character of agnosticism, the unknowable. Each specific quality assigned to the notion of "god" makes its existence less probable.

belief is a simple and easy to understand word... inventing new words to circumvent association or comparison is a waste of time for the purpose of communication if the new word holds no added meaning... "we are credible and they are not" is not a valid reason to evade conformity to the accepted meaning of a word... neither atheists nor theists have proof of their claim or a better argument than "look, it's obvious"... the absence of evidence is not evidence... scientists have a lot of reasonable guesses that don't require the presence of a creator, but these theories do not hinge on the absence... the absence of god is an assumption made by these scientists based upon feelings and not evidence... this isn't reasoning beyond "there is no proof"... there is no difference between a scientist that believes these theories and assumes there is a creator and a scientist that believes these theories and assumes there is no creator... they could both go about their work with that theory in place and reach the same conclusions if the "god of gaps" fallacy is avoided... I am running out of ways to say this...

*washes hands*
 

Vendrah

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belief is a simple and easy to understand word... inventing new words to circumvent association or comparison is a waste of time for the purpose of communication if the new word holds no added meaning... "we are credible and they are not" is not a valid reason to evade conformity to the accepted meaning of a word... neither atheists nor theists have proof of their claim or a better argument than "look, it's obvious"... the absence of evidence is not evidence... scientists have a lot of reasonable guesses that don't require the presence of a creator, but these theories do not hinge on the absence... the absence of god is an assumption made by these scientists based upon feelings and not evidence... this isn't reasoning beyond "there is no proof"... there is no difference between a scientist that believes these theories and assumes there is a creator and a scientist that believes these theories and assumes there is no creator... they could both go about their work with that theory in place and reach the same conclusions if the "god of gaps" fallacy is avoided... I am running out of ways to say this...

*washes hands*

You know.... When I was a teen I did love to write like this... like... this... but I am now struggling to understand you... because this way of writing... is sort of... confusing...

I would prefer to you to explain more yourself like this. Points.

And paragraphs. It is a more friendly reading. I understand your way of thinking of using ... a lot, but it is really harder to read and understand you that way.

I am going to go back and re-read to see if I do understand you but I don't think you can count me on that this time.
 

Siúil a Rúin

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belief is a simple and easy to understand word... inventing new words to circumvent association or comparison is a waste of time for the purpose of communication if the new word holds no added meaning... "we are credible and they are not" is not a valid reason to evade conformity to the accepted meaning of a word... neither atheists nor theists have proof of their claim or a better argument than "look, it's obvious"... the absence of evidence is not evidence... scientists have a lot of reasonable guesses that don't require the presence of a creator, but these theories do not hinge on the absence... the absence of god is an assumption made by these scientists based upon feelings and not evidence... this isn't reasoning beyond "there is no proof"... there is no difference between a scientist that believes these theories and assumes there is a creator and a scientist that believes these theories and assumes there is no creator... they could both go about their work with that theory in place and reach the same conclusions if the "god of gaps" fallacy is avoided... I am running out of ways to say this...

*washes hands*
You are not addressing anything I posted in response. You continue to frame the ludicrous with the responble. You believe what you believe. Closed circuit. No revision possible.
 

Siúil a Rúin

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For those jumping to conclusions about me in other contexts - I have not even stated my own personal position on the existence of god, but presenting the logical processes as it relates to this discussion. I will not present my position because it is irrelevant. What is relevant is that absurd beliefs not be correlated in the same definitions as responsible dismissal of the highly improbable.

I spent a decade on the philosophy forums debating this and gradually changed my position over the years in response to reasoned debate.

*washes hands*
Why are you washing your hands? Are my ideas contagious?
You gotta be careful conversing with the unwashed masses.
 

Infinite Metamorphosis

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Atheism isn't a belief, it's the absence of a belief so faith is irrelevant.

Does one require faith to be atheist about the existence of of the gods of dead religions or supernatural beings? Do you require faith to think Zeus is mythological? Or is it simply a logical lack of belief in the absence of proof?

The agnostic stance of sitting in the middle of believing in something and holding a lack of belief often isn't the most logical stance
Agnostics aren't sitting in the middle of believing and lacking belief, they just don't argue for the non-existence of god as fervently as atheists do. Agnostic is more the absence of belief than atheism is. Atheism is the presence of the belief that there is not a god, that it is something made up; in order to believe this, one must hold a belief that is unsupported by evidence. Agnosticism is essentially "I don't know because there isn't proof either way." That is the absence of belief. Once you settle on a conclusion, you hold a belief. To hold an absence of belief is to lack the presence of a conclusion. The moment you settle on a conclusion despite the absence of evidence to prove it, you've formed a faith based belief.

The thing is, going by that angle, almost everything becomes a matter of belief; we cannot even be sure that we are actually living in reality. Yes - that's generally my stance as a starting point. It's also why so much of what I believe is open-ended. Many of my views are comprised of "going with the answer that's the most accurate and reasonable to the best of my knowledge, but remaining open to new information changing what I see as the answer" - not that this is comparable to atheism or agnosticism, it's just that in life you have to believe something in order to be able to make decisions and move forward, so sometimes the only thing you can do is try to make the best choice(s) you can just so that you can move forward. I actually don't have an issue with faith entirely; I see it as something with grey area - because bear in mind what I said above...

I think just about everything requires faith to believe in. I basically see it as...operating from a stance of faith is unavoidable, but extremes in faith aren't logical. That's also the way to be the most accurate, as I see it. As a human race we've formed several conclusions we later proved untrue throughout history. I think...you pretty much have to be open-ended when you're striving for accuracy. Perhaps not always, but...for the most part. I think I would describe this as the quality of being "unassuming" and I think it holds some sense of objectiveness

I can see why someone would see atheism as the absence of belief though, but it's somewhat presumptuous in nature if you think about it. There's a bias within it if you come from that angle. What I mean by that is...it basically means you have to see god/gods as something that man created, rather than something that created man, beforehand. As though the belief in the existence of god came along, and prior there was the absence of belief in any god. Idk how to articulate it clearly with this one, I'm struggling to explain it so I might not make sense there. Basically, it doesn't look at the question of "Is there a god / are there gods?" objectively. If you're going to reply to that question, "Is there a god / are there gods?" Response: "No." You've now formed a conclusion. "Why do you believe there isn't one?" One might present reasoning, but they can't provide any evidence. The same is true in the case of religious people; they might present reasoning, but they also can't provide any evidence. So why is it called one thing when one group does it, yet another when another group does it? That's an inconsistency in logic / reasoning. In my eyes, atheism is merely the flip side of the coin in relation to religion.

Also, proving a negative (in this case, the non-existence of a god or gods) is incredibly difficult and arguably impossible. I think that's called the devil's proof dilemma ("you can't prove the devil doesn't exist").

Tell people you don't believe in the existence of fairies and they're hardly likely to tell you that your stance is a faith based system and the correct position is to say there is an exactly 50% chance that they exist or don't exist as anything otherwise requires faith.
Saying you don't believe in their existence is different than saying you believe they don't exist. Agnostics may accurately say they don't believe in the existence of god, but they do not say they believe there is not a god / gods / some higher power, as it cannot be proven. Agnosticism is simply acknowledging that the existence of God is not a fact but we cant prove its non-existence either. The same is technically true of fairies; we don't know whether they did exist, could exist now (even in some parallel universe or on some other planet), or may exist in the future. To say "I believe fairies don't exist" is therefore technically a faith based statement.
 

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I am with [MENTION=29287]Obfuscate[/MENTION] but I think that I can explain his point in a more simple way.

Basically, you can categorize belief in God in 3 general categories:
1) You firmly believe in God ("I do not believe, I know").
2) You firmly disbelieve in God ("I know there is no God, with the same conviction as Jung knows there is one").
3) You neither disbelieve or believe, you simply do not know and do not have conviction.
How many people do you think fit into each category as you define them?

Because I'd suggest there's plenty self declaring option 1, a decent amount shrugging their way into 3, but few atheists I know/have read/heard/spoken to ever say they know there isn't a god so give a positive statement against the possibility, they say in the absence of any evidence to the contrary I find it highly unlikely any exist. The most outspoken atheists like Dawkins, Hitchens, Harris etc. who talk/write about about it rarely if ever make positive statements against any supernatural existence and they're pretty firmly atheist. 1 and 2 are not equal opposites here.

The distinction between atheism and agnosticism is;
Atheist: Lack of belief (yes, you'll find definitions that state it as a positive belief but unless there is a bias behind it like being on a theist site, lack of belief is always there)
Agnostic: It is unknown and unknowable

These aren't my definitions.

So option 3 doesn't work for me, agnosticism asserts that the answer is unknowable and therefore gives equal space to both. I don't throw up my hands and say maybe, but maybe not, I say I've seen no evidence so I consider it highly unlikely, show me proof and I will change my stance. It's stronger than agnostic, I know this because my journey started as strong theist via theist leaning agnostic than true agnostic before I reached atheism, they were very different stances.

Ask me about the existence of any supernatural entity elsewhere in our universe and my stance changes to something that fits better with agnostic. I believe the evidence (or lack there of) provided by religions can be weighed up against logic and contradictions to form a conclusion that is not agnostic, it requires no faith.


I can say that I am 6 in terms of believing in a God that is and always been, simultaneously, perfect, "kind" (a "good person", except that it is not a person), benevolent, all-mighty powerful and present, because if God is and always been perfect, kind, benevolent, all-mighty powerful and present, then there would not be any suffering (I could not be tortured in any ways) and using the Devil or 'human free will' as an excuse does not cut for me.

However, I am 4 in terms of believing there is a God, either not much kind and with some cruelty (which I fear a lot tbh) (don't forget that Zeus is not painted on the western as kind a lot of times), or might not be all-mighty powerful or is just absent for some odd reason.

I am 3 in for an afterlife, and I also think that there might be "higher power(s)" that are not exactly God, spiritual things, and my afterlife notion is veeerryyy loose, so we can think of the force, 'higher' souls, etc...

In terms of wishes, I do actually want that a very God good exists and an afterlife..
It's not uncommon for atheists to separate out things like you have 6 on this point 4 on this point etc. based on what we view as more or less likely. Often things like the existence of an unknown supernatural force/god v specific religions/specific gods results in two different reads based on the degree of skepticism.

I disagree with the 3 categories you provide as alternatives to the 7 tier one though, the fact you distinguish your stance with multiple different numbers later seems like you see the contradiction here. The main point of the 7 categories is 7 is uncommon, 6 is still atheist though.

If I think the likelihood of a god/gods is much lower than the likelihood of there not being any, why sit in the middle saying odds are even? And if I don't, how is that agnostic?

As a Ti type my points can often sound like semantics, I get that, but the distinction is important here, if you define atheist as a positive belief, atheists would largely disagree because they do not hold a positive belief. As much as I view it more likely and live my life on that basis, I do not claim a positive belief.
 

Infinite Metamorphosis

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The distinction between atheism and agnosticism is;
Atheist: Lack of belief (yes, you'll find definitions that state it as a positive belief but unless there is a bias behind it like being on a theist site, lack of belief is always there)
Agnostic: It is unknown and unknowable
That definition of agnosticism is only one possibility of agnosticism. It's unknown OR unknowable--meaning that believing something is unknowable is not required to be an agnostic. There are several types of agnosticism anyway, and tbh if you go with the definition that atheism is a lack of belief ("I don't believe, but it could be real") rather than a positive belief ("I believe there isn't") it basically becomes indistinguishable from agnosticism.
 

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[MENTION=36353]Aerix[/MENTION] I disagree with your basic premise, so it's difficult for me to respond to your post in good faith.

Your stance does sound agnostic, I have no issue with that, but you put words into the mouths of me and other atheists claiming that we hold a positive belief and therefore it's based on faith. That's exactly what it isn't. I don't view the beliefs of religions as we know them as unknown and unknowable, I see claims by theists and their holy texts as able to be weighed up with the evidence or lack thereof and a conclusion of "well maybe or maybe not" being a cop out. I don't mean that as a slight against those who are agnostic, but for me, that is not a logical outcome there are things that are more or less likely based on the evidence provided without requiring faith to form a conclusion.

Positions based on evidence are not faith based, they're evidence based and are not comparable to how theists say they believe in X because they know it, feel it in their heart or however they choose to articulate it. Theism by default requires faith, the religions themselves will tell you that. Atheism does not.

Here's my actual answer to the question "Is there a god / are there gods": The evidence currently available does not compel me, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary I find it highly unlikely any god or gods exist. Not a positive statement, not yet still not agnostic.

Let me give some examples, the holy book I'm most familiar with is the bible so it will be based on that;
Did someone walk on water: That would be a supernatural event or based on deception, all currently know data about our world show that isn't possible
Did someone part the red sea: That would be a supernatural event, all currently know data about our world show that isn't possible
Did god talk to someone to instruct them: That would be the typical criteria of a mental illness these days, I've no reason to conclude that isn't the most likely possibility
Did Noah's Arc exist: Evidence does not support the flood happening, evidence does not support the boat's structure surviving so indicates not
Did a virgin birth a child: Biology indicates not
These things require the laws of the universe to be suspended or some form of trickery that the bible certainly doesn't suggest, I do not consider that logical.

This is specific scriptural points, there are non scriptural points as well; If Christianity is correct, then any other religions is wrong (and vice versa), why was a small area of the globe given all the access to the "truth" while the rest of the world is all but excluded from existence. Why do religions follow natural geographical migration trends etc. Why were miracles par for course in a time of high illiteracy, why not in a time where proof could be compiled with scientific evidence? It's a bit like my stance on UFO sightings, they were rampant, and blurry before the time of decent photographical evidence, as our ability to obtain objective proof improved, the number of claims reduced. Why does the bible make the world seem like the center of everything, why not talk about the magnitude of the universe and how the earth is one small dot in a massive expansive?

To be clear, I'm not interested in debating any of these points, this is simple an example of what I do not consider reasonable to say is unknown and unknowable. And if the evidence for any specific religion can be pulled apart unless you hold on to faith, then religion as a concept falls down for me. Therefore the stance that religion created god/gods seems likely. Provide evidence to the contrary that does not rely on faith and I'll review my stance. My position is not based on faith.


Also, proving a negative (in this case, the non-existence of a god or gods) is incredibly difficult and arguably impossible. I think that's called the devil's proof dilemma ("you can't prove the devil doesn't exist").
I'm not attempting to prove anything, I hold the lack of a belief, it's up to those saying the opposite to prove their position, should they wish to.

I say a lack of believe =/= it's unknown or unknowable. Tell me why you disagree with that statement?
 

Mole

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Rather than being about evidence and reason, religion is about entrancement, and who doesn't want to be entranced, to be enchanted, we want to put aside the burdens of our critical minds, and rest in the bosom of Abraham, click Rocka my soul in the bosom of Abraham - YouTube.

So we want religion, we want to be good, so our Father will look after us. Religion is not just hard to beat, it is impossible to beat. The agnostics and atheists are barking up the wrong tree with reasons and evidence. Like Don Quixote they are tilting at windmills, click Man Of La Mancha (1972) - Clip 3: Don Quixote Charges The Giant (HD) - YouTube.
 

Kasper

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That definition of agnosticism is only one possibility of agnosticism. It's unknown OR unknowable--meaning that believing something is unknowable is not required to be an agnostic. There are several types of agnosticism anyway, and tbh if you go with the definition that atheism is a lack of belief ("I don't believe, but it could be real") rather than a positive belief ("I believe there isn't") it basically becomes indistinguishable from agnosticism.
Then it seems definitions are forming a barrier here.

Meaning of atheism in English:

atheism
Pronunciation /ˈeɪθɪɪz(ə)m/

NOUN
• Disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods.

Oxford


Why are you insisting on ignoring the part that says lack of belief? It is literally part of the definition.

I'm not dismissing the part that says disbelief, I recognise there are strong atheists who make a positive claim, I do suggest that outside of a specific local deity their stance is generally not global but they exist. That, however, is not the universal definition of an atheist as shown by the Oxford definition, and claimed by atheists.

Definitions are more than just literal, their use is important too so this is not the point I cling to, but just on the definition part, the a before the Greek theos (divinity) and gnosis (to know) mean that atheism is the absence of belief in the gods and agnosticism is a lack of knowledge of a specified subject matter.
 

Obfuscate

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For those jumping to conclusions about me in other contexts - I have not even stated my own personal position on the existence of god, but presenting the logical processes as it relates to this discussion. I will not present my position because it is irrelevant. What is relevant is that absurd beliefs not be correlated in the same definitions as responsible dismissal of the highly improbable.

I spent a decade on the philosophy forums debating this and gradually changed my position over the years in response to reasoned debate.


Why are you washing your hands? Are my ideas contagious?
You gotta be careful conversing with the unwashed masses.

hah... no, it is a common phrase, and I meant it in the common way... it was a more succinct version of the sentiment you expressed in your previous reply to me in this thread...

my base points (in response to you) were:

1. neither position is unbiased (in the sense that conclusions are reached a priori)

2. statistics/evidence (regarding god or the absence thereof) have no basis from which to be formed so the mention of them in this individual case is meaningless

3. relabeling this belief as a nonbelief adds no (significant) further meaning and should therefore be eschewed

these arguments were made to show that your objections (as provided) were baseless... you offered no counterargument to these... you instead decided to make assumptions about the cognitive process required to reach either conclusion... how someone reaches either view and how certain they feel about either isn't a process of logically following evidence... there is no evidence... there may be reasons to discredit an individual belief system, but doing so doesn't create a proof that god is absent (i.e. disproving one or more theories of gravity isn't evidence gravity is make believe)... until there is proof/evidence of either based upon empirical evidence, neither is more or less valid than the other...

unless you can contradict me with evidence, there is no point in continuing this interaction...

post script:

the third point hinges on the first two... if you can show me a legitimate argument against those, i would certainly cede that there is a valid reason to employ a new term... please note the gravity example if you attempt to construct such a case... showing that a particular spiritual belief is absurd is not evidence that all spiritual beliefs are invalid... neither does it prove that reaching one a priori conclusion is more "logical" than reaching another a priori conclusion...

it is the simple inability to derive proof/evidence that puts the two in the same category...
 

Siúil a Rúin

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Debates about the existence of god be all...

giphy.gif




Edit: To be clear - I am referring my recent exchange here along with several others and the ones going back over a lifetime. People just keep restating their same ideas in complete circular futility. So many conceptual games are played with this topic. Believing in [insert absurdity] is not the same as believing [insert absurdity] does not exist. It's so basic, that I know intelligent people are playing games when they equate believing the absurd with believing the absurd doesn't exist. I'm not even saying that every conceptual definition of god is absurd, but many are and responsible, analytical, and reasonable people appreciate the difference. The more specific parameters that are placed on a definition of god, the more it moves to this issue of absurdity, and the fewer parameters, the more it moves towards the unknowable. In this manner I am both atheist and agnostic, depending on what definition of god we are talking about, and that is an intellectually responsible position.
 

theablekingedgar

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stop hating those who hate religion and spirituality.

does it make one a better person to be religious and spiritual.
no it doesn't.
i'm not one for conservative thinking but then let people be in life. stop bemoan those who aren't arch-traditionalist in their thinking.
 

Mole

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I started my journey away from faith some time ago. I was well educated in my faith and understood it well, so I decided to practise it. I tried to practise my faith for about a month, but it became apparent that I was becoming ridiculous, so I stopped.

And it was only in the Philosophy Department of Sydney University I discovered why I instinctively found my faith ridiculous.

And not satisfied with that I discovered how my faith was emotionally damaging in the Psychology Department of the University of New South Wales.

And then at our Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sexual Abuse, I discovered, while saving souls, my faith was murdering the souls of children, at least ten thousand children across the world over the last seventy years, and covering it up.
 

Mole

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There are many ways we are inducted into our faith, but no formal ways out. We have to find our our own ways out, without help, and often disapproval and even opposition.

Fortunately in the West we can leave our faith without risking our life, but this is not true in Islamic countries where the punishment for apostasy, leaving the faith, is death.

The stated aim of Islam is to "revert" the West to Islam. And one method of reversion to Islam is Takiyya, or the sanctioned lying to Westerners about the intentions of Islam. Another is intimidation by terrorism, and the other is by a high birth rate.

We can start to leave our faith by reading Ayaan Hirsi Ali in her book called, "Infidel". click |Ebook PDF EPUB Download| Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali in 2020 | Infidelity, Ebook, Ebook pdf.
 

Firebird 8118

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I believe in God. I dislike religion.

I agree, religion (as well as politics) has created the greatest divisions among people. And it’s just sad, to say the least.
 
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