Author Topic: I don't really get the question...  (Read 3029 times)

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Offline Boots

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #145 on: March 16, 2015, 10:15:22 AM »
Careful, eh...he may be an elf

...religion is simply tribalism with a side order of philosophical wankery, and occasionally a baseball bat to smash...anyone who doesn't show...deference to the tribe's chosen totem.

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To not believe in god is to know that it falls to us to make the world a better place.

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Offline frank callaway

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #146 on: March 16, 2015, 04:25:22 PM »

First of all, I can party with the best of 'em.  No doubt I'd drink eh! under the table, and probably you too... 


you have offended my honour as a man and a drunk, you sir are hereby challenged to a drinking duel.

see this guy eh!...?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIGPO90xYG4

i do this every morning when i get to the office...
When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him.

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Offline Mrjason

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #147 on: March 17, 2015, 06:38:04 AM »


i do this every morning when i get to the office...

That explains a lot.

Offline kcrady

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #148 on: April 11, 2015, 02:36:56 AM »
You believe suffering is the exception in life…?  Let’s contemplate that for a moment.  All the things we as human beings do to each other, other animals and our environment.  Let’s set aside the terrible accidents and psychotic murderers… what about the lying, the cheating, the selfishness, the manipulation, maneuvering, pandering and posturing at others expense…  and what is beauty?  Who is not to say true beauty is pain, or as you say, a mountain of dung…

Who granted this privilege?  A cold dead indifferent universe…?  The fact that very little matter in the universe becomes conscious does not make life a privilege; you could easily argue it’s a curse.

Suffering is the norm, beauty is in the eye of the beholder and there is no victory to be had.  There is no tragedy without positive experiences.  There is no value in life outside of what you can consciously or subconsciously attach in an effort to avert, distract or otherwise ignore reality.

But hey, at least it's all part of Yahweh's Great Big Marvelous Plan, right?  It shows how much he loves you!  Isn't it nice to know that Somebody made all this horrible stuff happen to people on purpose?  Like childhood leukemia!  If that's not proof of Yahweh's omnibenevolence, I don't know what is!  Plus, if you're too attracted to somebody not your spouse, Yahweh might hurt them for you.  How awesome is that?
"The question of whether atheists are, you know, right, typically gets sidestepped in favor of what is apparently the much more compelling question of whether atheists are jerks."

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Offline kcrady

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #149 on: April 11, 2015, 03:55:22 AM »
Ok, now I have a question for you:

If I spend the rest of my life believing, what is the harm done?  If I’m wrong, then first off I won’t ever know, and at least I spent my life being a good person, helping others, being patient, and mostly being happy and free of fear.  If there really is a God but I spent my whole life worshipping the wrong one so I still go to hell, then oh well, I at least had a good life while it lasted.  How will my life be worse by believing?

Why should your concern extend only to your life?  Your daughter is very likely to grow up being told that Yahweh meddles in the circumstances of her life--doing things like killing her great-grandfather so she can be born.  None of this meddling is directly obvious as such, mind you--no pillars of fire and cloud and bread from heaven--no, it's all very cleverly camouflaged as ordinary events; that way she can't tell definitively which events are Yahweh doing stuff, which are the Devil, and which are just ordinary events arising from physical causality.  So that way she can "choose by free will" to have FAITH of course.

Here's how this will harm her: she will have to put extra mental effort into trying to second-guess Yahweh's intentions before she can make a life decision.  "Does the fact that Jacob got beat up after school mean I shouldn't go out with him?"  "Mom got sick last week--is God mad at me?  Or at her?  What for?  What do we need to do to stop him from punishing us?"  "I got in a fender-bender when I was on my way to visit UC Davis to see if I wanted to go there after I graduate from High School.  Is God trying to tell me I shouldn't go to college?"  And so on.  So, she'll make life-decisions based on "feelings" and interpretation of omens and the like, instead of her best rational appraisal of the facts of reality.

Now, all of this could be perfectly sensible--if your beliefs about Yahweh were actually true.  But if they're not true, then there's a good chance that your daughter (or you, for that matter, if you insist on just looking out for Number One) will be making life decisions--perhaps important ones--on the basis of incorrect guesses at the intentions of an entity that doesn't exist and isn't "sending signs" she (or you) are meant to heed.  Which means: bad life decisions.  Furthermore, there's the extra anxiety of worrying that she might be displeasing somebody who's not even really there, adding an extra layer of difficulty to her life, when life is hard enough.

In short: It actually matters if your understanding of reality is correct.  Wouldn't you like to have a correct understanding of reality?
"The question of whether atheists are, you know, right, typically gets sidestepped in favor of what is apparently the much more compelling question of whether atheists are jerks."

--Greta Christina

Online junebug72

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #150 on: April 12, 2015, 08:26:46 AM »
Amputees can live without limbs.  My question is Why Don't God Heal Children's Cancer?  Children should not be getting cancer.  Why doesn't it protect the little boys from pedophile priests?  Why doesn't it protect children whose parents abuse and molest them?

Jesus said it is better to tie a grinding wheel to your neck and be tossed into the ocean than to hurt the little ones.  Yet children suffer everyday.  Yet it is the god believers supporting the harm of children by your votes.

Capitalism hurts the little ones.  Refusal to seriously cut back, I'm talking 75%, on our petroleum based commodities is like slapping any real god right in the face.  Money will not cure cancer.  God will not cure cancer.  Avoiding the use of carcinogens is the only way to cure cancer and global warming.  The production of petroleum is our largest polluter and carcinogen maker.  Has the middle and upper class Christians converted to bio-diesel?

Then we are overwhelmed with commodities from China who violates human and environmental protection law to sell so cheap.  They have made fools out of the US government.  Their products are lead based,  Lead is a carcinogen. 

Christians support the politicians, whose only motive is greed, that support the corps. that pollute our world because they "say" they are Christians.  They support anti abortion.  What have they done to change abortion laws, huh?

Just one favor Google Cancer Ally and Google Koch Bros..  Think about it next time you fill your car up.  There has to be at least 300,000,000 million cars and trucks on our roads everyday.  That's why our children have cancer.  We don't need a god to save us.  We need to save ourselves.  If there is a higher power out there I'm quite sure it would be a very proud day for that creator.

Jesus did not say spare the rod spoil the child, that is Proverbs 13:24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

King Solomon is the likely author of Proverbs and this is what god said to him,

"Since you are guilty of this, and you have not kept My covenant and My laws ... I will tear the kingdom away from you ... But I will not do this in your time, for the sake of your father David. Instead, I will tear it away from your son ... I will give your son one tribe for the sake of My servant David, and for the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen." (1 Kings 11:9-13)

After that he tried to Kill David to no prevail. He was a "mad man" in the end.

Then David commits adultery with his best friend/soldier's wife then had him killed in battle.

Thing about it is a lot of children are abused because of this scripture.  That ties back in to hurt the children and you will suffer.  I don't see the Koch bros. suffering.  In fact they are living it up. 

We suffer so the top 2% can have all the control. 

Do you not think when Jesus said it would be easier to thread a camel through the eye of a needle that he had some insight as to how capitalism is harmful to society?  The story of the Rich man and Lazarus. 
 
LOOK DEEP INTO NATURE AND YOU WILL UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING BETTER...ALBERT EINSTEIN

Offline AshleyNC30

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #151 on: April 22, 2015, 11:27:42 AM »
Yes, jdawg, that's something I'm struggling with myself currently.  God made himself "known" to me recently by performing some miracles in my life that I had specifically prayed for out of faith (I at least hoped there was a God but wasn't sure).  So I feel that he provided evidence to me through that, and through the holy spirit which you will have to research on your own as I don't feel knowledgeable enough to discuss that here.  So do I really have faith anymore when I am constantly thinking about the evidence?  I guess the only faith I have is that I TRUST (another form of faith) that God will take care of me and has my best interest in mind.

So do you still stand behind this response of yours then:
In my opinion, asking why God won't heal amputees is the same as asking: "Why won't God just show up and prove himself to everyone."  I know I am inviting a lot of angry arguments by saying this, but here it goes.  It would defeat the point of FAITH.
Because it really sounds like you don't stand behind that response.  As in, you don't actually agree with that response at this point.

You're correct, I don't stand by that answer anymore.  Now my answer to "why God won't heal amputees" is that it wouldn't matter if he did.  You still wouldn't believe in him, not unless YOU were the amputee, or knew the amputee personally.  You would likely assume it's some sort of sham.  In today's culture, we can explain away anything God might do or assume there is some sort of scientific explanation that we just don't know yet.  You take this as proof that he's not real, I take this as proof that the world is falling further and further away from God because we are so desperately trying to prove his non-existence.
I am not here to support or defend organized religion.  I am here to support my belief that God and Jesus exist.

Offline Mrjason

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #152 on: April 22, 2015, 11:34:40 AM »
You're correct, I don't stand by that answer anymore.  Now my answer to "why God won't heal amputees" is that it wouldn't matter if he did.  You still wouldn't believe in him, not unless YOU were the amputee, or knew the amputee personally.
 

It would matter to the amputee. That amputee would believe even if no one else did. Why wouldn't god want another soul to go to heaven?

You would likely assume it's some sort of sham.  In today's culture, we can explain away anything God might do or assume there is some sort of scientific explanation that we just don't know yet.  You take this as proof that he's not real, I take this as proof that the world is falling further and further away from God because we are so desperately trying to prove his non-existence.

I don't think anyone is desperately trying to prove that god doesn't exist.
I just take the critical, non-magical thinking as proof that we are becoming a more enlightened species.

Do you notice that the more advanced society becomes the less room there is for a god in it?


Offline Boots

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #153 on: April 22, 2015, 11:48:01 AM »
... the world is falling further and further away from God because we are so desperately trying to prove his non-existence.

I will second Mrjason's sentiment that no one is trying to do that.  In fact, there are some of us (or at least one) who would LOVE to have an omni-benevolent, omnipotent daddy looking out for us, and a verifiable promise of a blessed afterlife!!  Wouldn't that just be the NARDS?!?!  Listen to Hayden's Messiah, and I challenge you (theist and atheist alike) to not be moved.  I'd love if the quaint Christmas story were literally true, that angels came down to herald the coming of the Savior!

Too bad my (or your) wanting it doesn't make it true.

The reality of our situation is that we live in a world one would expect to see, were there no supernatural presence initiating or guiding creation.  Weird and unlikely things happen *all the time* regardless of what idol you worship or what idea of a deity you revere.  The truth is, if we agree that no god is going to help us, then it falls to us to help ourselves, and each other.  Live like every other human[1] is your brother/sister, and we're all in this together (no gods necessary for that, since it's patently true), and bam, things will get better.

Accept that this is the only life you get, and you will be able to squeeze more meaning out of it than you would otherwise.  And you will teach your children/the next generation the same.
 1. who does not openly wish you harm, like ISIS
...religion is simply tribalism with a side order of philosophical wankery, and occasionally a baseball bat to smash...anyone who doesn't show...deference to the tribe's chosen totem.

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To not believe in god is to know that it falls to us to make the world a better place.

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Offline jdawg70

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #154 on: April 22, 2015, 12:07:43 PM »
You're correct, I don't stand by that answer anymore.  Now my answer to "why God won't heal amputees" is that it wouldn't matter if he did.  You still wouldn't believe in him, not unless YOU were the amputee, or knew the amputee personally.
I see no downsides to this.  At all.  I see only benefit.  I see some reduction in suffering; I see additional people being given this knowledge of god's existence; I see more data points for people to look at when evaluating whether or not this god entity exists.  From a cost/benefit standpoint, I see no cost and significant benefit.

If the question were "Why won't god heal amputees in order to show to jdawg70 that god does, in fact, exist?" then I think your answer would have some merit.  The answer being "such an action would fail to actually show jdawg70 that god does, in fact, exist."  Assuming that to be true (and I don't really think it is true to be honest - I'd find that to be very compelling reason to believe that god does, in fact, exist.  You know - him showing up and doing stuff.  Actually being is a powerful bit of evidence in establishing that you actually exist to others.).

But that isn't the question.  The question simply is "Why won't god heal amputees?"  And to that question, the answer "well jdawg70 wouldn't be convinced of god's existence that way" doesn't really address it.

Quote
You would likely assume it's some sort of sham.
That's sorta why the question itself revolves around amputees - I would be hard pressed to explain the regrowth of a human limb to be a sham.  Very hard pressed.  But a regrown limb would be much more compelling than someone's cold going away.

Quote
In today's culture, we can explain away anything God might do or assume there is some sort of scientific explanation that we just don't know yet.
The 'don't know' part is an important bit.  If I do not actually know the causal agent or phenomenon responsible for some manifestation of reality, do you really think it makes sense to just arbitrarily replace 'I don't know' with 'that was god'?

I think the problem is that, in today's culture, far too many people (and yes AshleyNC30, I am lumping you in this group) just feel way too uncomfortable with 'I don't know'.  Far too many people, rather than admit that they simply do not know, prefer to fill-in-the-blank and just go with "well, god."

Quote
You take this as proof that he's not real, I take this as proof that the world is falling further and further away from God because we are so desperately trying to prove his non-existence.
I certainly do not take that as proof that god is not real.  I'm not so desperately trying to prove the non-existence of god.  I'm not really sure what would constitute proof of the non-existent frankly.  If there is anything I am desperately trying to do is to find some proof or evidence of this god's existence.  I keep finding nothing, in spite of people in the world a) telling me that this god dude does, in fact, exist and b) making decisions that affect everyone based on the existence of this god and what s/he purportedly wants.
"When we landed on the moon, that was the point where god should have come up and said 'hello'. Because if you invent some creatures, put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, you f**king turn up and say 'well done'."

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Offline screwtape

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #155 on: April 22, 2015, 12:09:51 PM »
Now my answer to "why God won't heal amputees" is that it wouldn't matter if he did.  You still wouldn't believe in him, not unless YOU were the amputee, or knew the amputee personally.  You would likely assume it's some sort of sham.


Really?  That is why you think god won't heal amputees?  Because we wouldn't give yhwh credit even if he did?  That's either a petty god or a mopey god you have there.  He sounds like either my 9th grade girlfriend or depressed pessimist.

God's up sitting on his throne.  He considers healing amputees, then thinks, "what's the point?  Those atheists wouldn't believe me even if I did.  I dunno why I even bother anymore.  I'm going back to bed."  Trudges off to bed...

You misunderstand the point of the question, Ashley.  My boilerplate response to hopefully help you:

There is a certian type of xian who attempts to justify his or her god beliefs by claiming that people are miraculously healed of various afflictions by divine intervention.  The afflictions may include cancer, diabetes, coma, heart conditions, tooth decay, halitosis, spastic colon, etc.  We frequently hear anecdotes about how some church group prayed for some guy and the next day he was completely healed. 

But there are several problems with this kind of reasoning.  First, data shows many of these types of afflictions sometimes "clear up" without any kind of prayers.  It seems to be a natural response or a misdiagnosis.  Second, people of all religions make the same claims.  And last, there is a whole class of ailments that are never, ever cured by prayer or naturally. 

People never regrow lost limbs.  Lost eyes never regrow in the empty sockets.  Retarded people never gain normal mental capacity. Alzheimers and Dementia sufferers never recover.  Old people never rejuvenate. 

This has clear implications about a god that supposedly heals people.  It leaves you only a few conclusions about such a god.



In today's culture, we can explain away anything God might do or assume there is some sort of scientific explanation that we just don't know yet.

?  Assuming a naturalistic explanation isn't the right thing to do?  Kindly explain, Ashley. 

Some follow-up questions:

1. Should we consider elves, ghosts, vampires, black magic and chupacabras when pondering how aspects of reality work?  If not, where ought we draw the line? 

2. If someone were to ask you how a hi-def TV works, would you be right in ruling out spirits right off the bat, or would you need to run some experiments first? 

3. When a lightbulb in your house blows, is it possible it was the work of a gremlin?

4. If someone offered to sell you magic beans, would you have to seriously consider the offer? 

5. Do you expect to find witches living in gingerbread houses in the woods? 

6. Or is all of this openmindedness toward supernaturalism reserved for your favored religion?



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Offline nogodsforme

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Re: I don't really get the question...
« Reply #156 on: April 22, 2015, 06:33:26 PM »
Even as we fall further away from god(s), people are living longer than ever, infant mortality is falling everywhere except for war situations, women and minority rights are improving in most places, literacy levels are rising, famine has become episodic and rare[1], serious infectious diseases are contained quickly[2], surgery for many conditions has become routine. If you do lose a limb, you are far more likely to survive it and be able to have a good life--no gods needed. Many of us will live to old age with our own teeth (thanks to dental care and fluoride)  still able to see (thanks to glasses) and able to walk (thanks to hip replacements)  for the first time in human history.

Find any era in the past when people presumably were closer to god--1950's, 1850's, 1550's. What was the overall death rate? What was the infant mortality rate? Were people expected to routinely lose a few babies along the way? Were women expected to routinely die in childbirth? What happened if you contracted an infectious disease like leprosy or smallpox? How nasty was the water, and what was basic sanitation like?  Who could vote, own property, hold any job or public office,  live in any community of their choice? What was the status of women and minority groups? How many people were enslaved or in some other way severely oppressed? What was the criminal justice system like? How were mentally ill people treated?

More people have more opportunities to live decent lives than ever before in human history. As we have fallen further away from god(s) life gets better, not worse. Moreover, the places with the fewest overt religious influences tend to be the best places to live: Canada, Japan, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland. The more religious a place, the worse people's lives tend to be by comparison: Haiti, Guatemala, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Sudan, Somalia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Bangladesh, Burma. (Even in the worst places, people are better off overall than they were 1000 years ago.)

Anyone who thinks life was better for the average person 200 or 400 or 2400 years ago just does not know history. I have a colleague who studies the history of medicine. He says that 1000 years ago, if you got a cut, any cut no matter how small, it was about 50-50 that you would die of a nasty septic infection. How many people here have gotten seriously ill from infected cuts? Probably not many. Clean water and antibiotics for the win, babycakes.

And, no, prayer to gods had no positive effect on health, life spans, survival from accidents or disease, or we would not have had to invent scientific medicine and implement public health measures. Why go through ten years of medical training learning how to safely cut living people open, take out bad sh!t and sew them back up? Why develop drugs to treat mental illness, STD's and epilepsy? Why even bother to boil water to kill the germs?

Why do any of that if a guy in a dress muttering in Latin or Sanskrit works just as well?

I have said it before, and will say it again so people like AshelyNC can think about it: if religion worked the way people say it does, we would not have needed to invent science:angel:
 1. Even in really populated places like India and China.
 2. Compare the modern global reaction to Ebola and Aids (progress on the latter slowed down mainly by human stupidity, largely due to relying on religion--condoms and needle exchanges are sinful and baaaaad!-- instead of science) to the widespread death and devastation caused by the bubonic plague in the Middle Ages, the 1918 Influenza, polio in the 1930's and 40's, or syphilis before the 1960's.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.