Author Topic: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist  (Read 4445 times)

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Offline wright

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #116 on: December 23, 2013, 08:41:34 PM »


Christians were also responsible for promoting and defending slavery.

Economic interests provided the material justification for slavery in the U.S., but there really isn't any question that Christianity provided the moral justification.

you're lying again.
[/quote]

I'd say welcome to the forum, but that's wasted on someone determined to troll. Reported.
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Offline ParkingPlaces

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #117 on: December 23, 2013, 08:50:52 PM »
I think "grace" is the narcissistic feeling you get when you tell yourself god loves you.

So he is addicted to the feeling he gets from his delusional world view

Kinda like "hatred" is that narcissistic feeling you get while persecuting the Christians that you know have exposed you as the arrogant bigot you are.

The christians that have exposed themselves to me weren't arrogant at all. Like you, they were real small.
Not everyone is entitled to their opinion. They're all entitled to mine though.

Offline Foxy Freedom

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #118 on: December 23, 2013, 08:54:27 PM »
With a heart full of hatred, you, an atheist, can't grasp it.

Sounds like you're the one with "a heart full of hatred." Why are you such a hater?  Even Jesus said "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." The things of the Spirit are foolishness to the natural man, so why does this come as such a surprise to you?

I'd like to hear your testimony, if you'll send me a PM. Bashing atheists is not the way to win friends and influence people.  If you read the New Testament, Jesus bashed the religious folks, not the unbelievers.

It is a pity that he is determined to get himself banned. I have met people like him before. They have usually taken refuge in religion because of personal problems which need to be worked out.
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Offline Betelnut

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #119 on: December 23, 2013, 08:59:00 PM »

In an atheistic world, why can't we make slaves out of the dumb people?

Stephen Jay Gould had a great essay on this very topic Skeptic.  It was called, Human Equality Is a
Contingent Fact of History
.  Fascinating read as are all of SJG's essays.  You'd learn a lot about evolution from him, if you'd dare.

http://www.sjgarchive.org/library/text/b16/p0425.htm

(To forward the text, change "0425" to 0426, etc.)

Offline Astreja

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #120 on: December 23, 2013, 10:54:59 PM »
I'm curious what the INDIVIDUAL atheist believes.

Care to share what YOU believe? Forget about everyone else.
I'll play.
  • I self-describe as a secular humanist.  I believe that protecting the individual from the excesses of both church and state is in the best interests of humanity as a whole.  Humanity needs to survive and mature, and we need all the diversity of creative thought that we can get because we need new solutions to intractable age-old problems.
  • I believe that gods are possible, but currently I don't see any objective evidence for them.  (And, for the record, I'm agnostic regarding My own divinity.   ;))  I think that science, not religion, is our best bet for finding the Real Deal, if it exists.   Such a discovery could lead to a scientific revolution that would expand physics in a whole new direction -- Perhaps a parallel system of matter/energy that would finally explain the "spiritual" realm and make it accessible to all.
  • Further to the above, I'm also a big fan of open source and believe that everyone has the right to become a god if that's what they want.
  • I try to utilize the Platinum Rule:  Treat others the way they want to be treated, rather than the way you want to be treated.
  • There is only one concept that I retained from My early adventures in Bible reading and Sunday School attendance.  However, it's what I consider the Prime Directive for humanity, not just Christianity:  "I was hungry and you gave me something to eat; I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink; I was a stranger and you invited me in; I needed clothes and you clothed me; I was sick and you looked after me; I was in prison and you came to visit me."  (Matthew 25:35-36)  I am My brother's keeper.
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Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #121 on: December 23, 2013, 11:12:45 PM »

In an atheistic world, why can't we make slaves out of the dumb people?

Stephen Jay Gould had a great essay on this very topic Skeptic.  It was called, Human Equality Is a
Contingent Fact of History
.  Fascinating read as are all of SJG's essays.  You'd learn a lot about evolution from him, if you'd dare.

http://www.sjgarchive.org/library/text/b16/p0425.htm

(To forward the text, change "0425" to 0426, etc.)
Did the good ole boy Christians not think of Africans as sub-human,which is why they were taken as slaves and treated in manner not fitting of the "modern Christian"?
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Offline Ivellios

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #122 on: December 23, 2013, 11:27:09 PM »
With a heart full of hatred, you, an atheist, can't grasp it.

Between your handle and your previous posts, I think someone should remove the plank from thier eye before they tell others about thier splinters.

The fruits of the spirit are:
Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Gentleness, Faithfullnes and Self Control. Against such things there is no law.

Love is Patient, Love is kind, does not envy... yes, no?
« Last Edit: December 23, 2013, 11:32:19 PM by Ivellios »

Offline mhaberling

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #123 on: December 24, 2013, 01:05:03 AM »
Azdgari, once again, lots of talk in between.

In response, Measuring if your morals are better than someone elses on the standard of your own morals makes no sense. That would be the same as measuring the accuracy of a ruler by comparing inch marks made using it to inch marks made by the same ruler. To say wou are going to measure to things against each other means that their is a greater standard than both by which to measure. I would call that God's Standard because I see know other way that standard could exist but if you see a way it could please enlighten me.

Still my original question stands...
"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." - Benjamin Franklin

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #124 on: December 24, 2013, 03:12:09 AM »
I never said they ALL have a belief system.
I'm curious what the INDIVIDUAL atheist believes.

I don't believe you.

Reason is, a couple people, myself included, have shared their thoughts in a lengthy and considered fashion.  You've chosen not to respond to them, but instead - as usual - to slap one-liners at the low-hanging fruit.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline Dante

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #125 on: December 24, 2013, 09:39:51 AM »
Should I just assume that an atheist has no beliefs at all, then?
I just want to know what atheists believe but all I get is stammering and avoiding telling me what they DON'T believe instead of what they DO believe.

We believe all sorts of different things, which is why you don't find a belief system for atheists. You think there's one where there is not. The ONLY thing that we all agree on is the lack of belief in gods. All else is up for debate.

I never said they ALL have a belief system.
I'm curious what the INDIVIDUAL atheist believes.

Care to share what YOU believe? Forget about everyone else.

I believe all sorts of things. I believe your god to be imaginary. I believe that the truth doesn't give a shit about your feeling, that the truth doesn't need you to believe in it for it to be true. I believe that being willfully ignorant is a waste of a mind.

Or did you have a more specific question?
Actually it doesn't. One could conceivably be all-powerful but not exceptionally intelligent.

Offline Hatter23

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #126 on: December 24, 2013, 11:21:58 AM »
With a heart full of hatred, you, an atheist, can't grasp it.

Sounds like you're the one with "a heart full of hatred." Why are you such a hater?  Even Jesus said "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." The things of the Spirit are foolishness to the natural man, so why does this come as such a surprise to you?

I'd like to hear your testimony, if you'll send me a PM. Bashing atheists is not the way to win friends and influence people.  If you read the New Testament, Jesus bashed the religious folks, not the unbelievers.

It is a pity that he is determined to get himself banned. I have met people like him before. They have usually taken refuge in religion because of personal problems which need to be worked out.

Or it could be just a socially maladjusted 14 year old feeling power by forcing people to react to him. Funny how they are identical in behavior.
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

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Offline jtk73

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #127 on: December 24, 2013, 03:42:15 PM »
Why bother placing your faith in something that could be wrong tomorrow? Seems like a foundation built on sand during a tsunami.

Wow. Did you even read what I wrote. Do you have some sort of reading comprehension problem?

Quote from: jtk73 in his brilliance
It doesn't matter. Scientists could discover tomorrow that the big bang theory is completely and utterly wrong. That, in no way, gives you the right to automatically insert your god into the equation. The time to posit a god-being is when there is direct, demonstrable evidence for a god-being.

If you are trying to convince atheists that your god exists, argue it on its own merits instead of trying to poke holes in the atheist's beliefs (especially if those beliefs really have nothing to do with their atheism).

What do you not understand about this, skeptic?

Even if the big bang theory is completely dis proven that doesn't mean that your god is the default.  Your god is not the only other possibility. Why would people honestly seeking answers about the origin of the universe not start from a neutral point and look into the simple, natural explanations first? Before the supernatural should ever be posed to be the origin of our universe, EVERY SINGLE natural theory of origin would have to be dis proven. That's the only logical thing to do. Why? Well for starters, positing a god doesn't actually EXPLAIN anything.

Then, and only then, should people start positing gods for the origin of the universe/life and even then, demonstrable evidence is still required. And notice that I said gods - your god still does not automatically get precedence. I know that you think it does but there are a lot of other theists on this planet that would strongly disagree with you.

By the way - It is not faith..at least not in the sense that you are using the term. First off, I can see the universe (granted not the entire thing and not unaided but I can see the stars and planets) so I know that it is there. I've never seen a god. Have you? If the big bang theory is wrong tomorrow, it doesn't change my worldview. I don't rely on it for my worldview.

And furthermore..
Did you miss this part of my previous reply?
Quote from: jtk73 in his brilliance
If you are trying to convince atheists that your god exists, argue it on its own merits instead of trying to poke holes in the atheist's beliefs (especially if those beliefs really have nothing to do with their atheism).

You are still trying poke holes in other people's arguments instead of arguing your own position on it's own merits.

Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #128 on: December 24, 2013, 10:09:57 PM »
Evolution is a fact.

Accept it or be the laughing stock of your descendants for as long as they remember you.

"The world is flat. Accept it or be the laughingstock of your descendants."

How did that work out?
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #129 on: December 24, 2013, 10:44:10 PM »
Evolution is a fact.

Accept it or be the laughing stock of your descendants for as long as they remember you.

"The world is flat. Accept it or be the laughingstock of your descendants."

How did that work out?
that opinion,that the earth was flat was Biblical in nature. Only through scientific discoveries was it proven false,much like science is getting closer to proving Biblegod as false

 Note that I did not state there is no such thing as a god,but that the god of the bible cant really exist
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Offline Willie

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #130 on: December 24, 2013, 10:53:52 PM »
Evolution is a fact.

Accept it or be the laughing stock of your descendants for as long as they remember you.

"The world is flat. Accept it or be the laughingstock of your descendants."

How did that work out?

Why are you asking an atheist? That was a theistic position. Scientists knew the earth's shape, and even its size, thousands of years ago. It was the religious who insisted that it was flat, despite the evidence to the contrary.

You've actually made a pretty fair analogy, other than being backwards. It favors Foxy's position, not yours.
« Last Edit: December 24, 2013, 10:55:36 PM by Willie »

Offline Antidote

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #131 on: December 25, 2013, 12:38:50 AM »
If I'm not mistaken it was Aristotle who made the discovery that the earth was, in fact, round; and made the incredibly accurate calculation of the earth's overall size.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2013, 12:41:47 AM by Antidote »
According to Cpt. Obvious: Theists think they know God, Atheists require evidence.

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Offline Azdgari

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #132 on: December 25, 2013, 01:30:58 AM »
In response, Measuring if your morals are better than someone elses on the standard of your own morals makes no sense. That would be the same as measuring the accuracy of a ruler by comparing inch marks made using it to inch marks made by the same ruler.

Which is not what I proposed at any point.  I said that my own values[1] are automatically my measuring tool.  I can use no others.  It is at no point a question of me considering mine to be objectively superior to those of another.  Considering mine to be objectively superior is something that makes no sense in the first place, and in unnecessary for moral behaviour in any case.

To say wou are going to measure to things against each other means that their is a greater standard than both by which to measure. I would call that God's Standard because I see know other way that standard could exist but if you see a way it could please enlighten me.

You have no way of judging "God's Standard" to be greater, unless there is a still-greater standard than God's Standard against which you could judge it.  That is the critical flaw in considering "God's Standard" to be objectively the best.  It's just another standard, and you lack any objective means of giving it privilege.  All you have to do so is your own subjective preference.  At least own it.

Still my original question stands...

Which question?
 1. From which morals arise.
The highest moral human authority is copied by our Gandhi neurons through observation.

Offline mhaberling

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #133 on: December 25, 2013, 02:01:36 AM »

Which is not what I proposed at any point.  I said that my own values[1] are automatically my measuring tool.  I can use no others.  It is at no point a question of me considering mine to be objectively superior to those of another.  Considering mine to be objectively superior is something that makes no sense in the first place, and in unnecessary for moral behavior in any case.
 1. From which morals arise.

This may be just us getting a bit off track. The question was: Could you act to stop a theif without making the judgement that your morals are greater than his?


You have no way of judging "God's Standard" to be greater, unless there is a still-greater standard than God's Standard against which you could judge it.  That is the critical flaw in considering "God's Standard" to be objectively the best.  It's just another standard, and you lack any objective means of giving it privilege.  All you have to do so is your own subjective preference.  At least own it.


Ok, well keep God out of it for the time being. What I mean is a Universal Morality, an ultimate good. I do not see where else such a good could exist except for with God. but for the sake of discussion I am arguing that we make judgement about are morality vs. that of others based on our belief that ours is closer to the universal morality or ultimate good.
"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." - Benjamin Franklin

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #134 on: December 25, 2013, 02:23:41 AM »
I never said they ALL have a belief system.
I'm curious what the INDIVIDUAL atheist believes.

I don't believe you.

Reason is, a couple people, myself included, have shared their thoughts in a lengthy and considered fashion.  You've chosen not to respond to them, but instead - as usual - to slap one-liners at the low-hanging fruit.

Oooh look!  There's another one!

"The world is flat. Accept it or be the laughingstock of your descendants."

How did that work out?

So no - I do NOT believe that you are genuinely interested in what atheists believe.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #135 on: December 25, 2013, 07:35:43 AM »


Quote
Christians were also responsible for promoting and defending slavery.

Economic interests provided the material justification for slavery in the U.S., but there really isn't any question that Christianity provided the moral justification.

you're lying again.
Well, those who have had an education will not quite see it as you do. Also, you will recall the Boer justification for apartheid was originally based on the Bible.

The Boers' view was reflected in, but independent from, the interpretation of Christian slave holders:

Ge:9:18: And the sons of Noah, that went forth of the ark, were Shem, and Ham, and Japheth: and Ham is the father of Canaan.
[...]
Ge:9:24: And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him. [Edit -> that's Ham]
Ge:9:25: And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
Ge:9:26: And he said, Blessed be the LORD God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
Ge:9:27: God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
In the next Chapter we learn:
Ge:10:6: And the sons of Ham; Cush, and Mizraim, and Phut, and Canaan.


Now, at that time, to simplistic peasants who invented the story of Noah, and who knew absolutely nothing about the history of mankind, then decided that the descendants of Canaan were black and therefore, all blacks were to be servants by order of God.

Wiki states correctly "The story's original objective was to justify the subjection of the Canaanites to the Israelites, but in later centuries, the narrative was interpreted by some Jews, Christians and Muslims as a curse of, and an explanation for, black skin, as well as slavery."

This came about because the Israelites (and others) saw black slaves (mainly Nubians and Ethiopians) and then argued in a circular manner that if these Blacks were slaves, they were therefore the descendants of Ham and therefore all Blacks were ordained by God to be slaves.

The truth of the matter was that slaves came in all skin colours, including white.

But nevertheless, it is an inescapable Biblical fact that God approves of slavery because there are many references to God telling people to take slaves. God does differentiate between slaves: there are Jewish slaves, who must be offered freedom after 7 years and all other slaves.

So, if you had explained everything, instead of saying "you're lying again." and exposing your ignorance of (i) the history of slavery and (ii) slavery in the Bible, we might now be seeing you as a more reasonable person.





« Last Edit: December 25, 2013, 07:37:56 AM by Graybeard »
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Offline Ivellios

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #136 on: December 25, 2013, 08:16:04 AM »
Ge:9:24: And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him. [Edit -> that's Ham]
Ge:9:25: And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
Ge:9:26: And he said, Blessed be the LORD God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
Ge:9:27: God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
In the next Chapter we learn:
Ge:10:6: And the sons of Ham; Cush, and Mizraim, and Phut, and Canaan.[/color]

When I first read that story, I wondered, "How did Noah know that Ham's decendants would be Canaanites?" Since there are other places in the bible that state, "It is called xyz today," shouldn't it have been, "Cursed be thou descendants Ham! [who later became known as the Canaanites]." ?  Like someone who didn't like the Canaanites and making a fake history justifying it.


Offline Azdgari

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #137 on: December 25, 2013, 12:16:49 PM »
This may be just us getting a bit off track. The question was: Could you act to stop a theif without making the judgement that your morals are greater than his?

I thought the answer was an obvious "yes".  And how would one go about measuring whether one set of morals are greater than another?  Please, do spell it out.  You can use your god's morals as an example of the supposedly "greater" ones.  How do you go about judging them to be greater?  Expound on your reasoning process.

Ok, well keep God out of it for the time being. What I mean is a Universal Morality, an ultimate good. I do not see where else such a good could exist except for with God. but for the sake of discussion I am arguing that we make judgement about are morality vs. that of others based on our belief that ours is closer to the universal morality or ultimate good.

Then how would one go about judging one standard to be universal, and another not?  Might-makes-right with the one holding that standard being more powerful than you?
The highest moral human authority is copied by our Gandhi neurons through observation.

Offline Willie

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #138 on: December 25, 2013, 12:27:36 PM »
If I'm not mistaken it was Aristotle who made the discovery that the earth was, in fact, round; and made the incredibly accurate calculation of the earth's overall size.

I don't know who first determined that it was round, but it was Eratosthenes who made the famous measurement. It's roundness was already known at that point, but I don't know for how long. I suspect that the roundness of the earth has been figured out independently by multiple people, perhaps even in prehistoric times, because there are several clues to it that do not require any special modern equipment to observe. Some that come to mind are:

1. The shadow of the earth on the moon during a lunar eclipse.
2. Ships disappearing below the horizon before they become too small to see.
3. The curvature of the horizon is actually visible from high places, such as mountaintops, especially if you have a flat landscape to observe, such as an ocean. It's subtle, and the opportunities to see it are few, but it is visible without any special tools. Surely some ancient persons noticed this and pondered what it means.
4. The difference in the position of constellations when viewed from different latitudes. Ancient peoples would have traveled much less, but they likely had much better familiarity with the night sky, so it would almost certainly have been noticed by those few who did make significant north-south treks.

Offline Hatter23

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #139 on: December 25, 2013, 01:29:34 PM »
Evolution is a fact.

Accept it or be the laughing stock of your descendants for as long as they remember you.

"The world is flat. Accept it or be the laughingstock of your descendants."

How did that work out?

Please show us a scientist using scientific method stated this, or accept your position as wrong.

Of course you will do neither because you don't own up to anything, ever.
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline Foxy Freedom

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #140 on: December 25, 2013, 02:43:16 PM »

"The world is flat. Accept it or be the laughingstock of your descendants."

How did that work out?

Don't you know that the ancient Greeks discovered that the earth was spherical and the fact was never forgotten. Read this wiki article called the Myth of the Flat Earth.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myth_of_the_Flat_Earth

You are making yourself into the laughing stock of your descendants by pretending that your minority religious views are better established than the modern science of the earth. Your religious views will not survive you, but the science of evolution will. Your religious views don't even survive the drive to the nearest church. Any Catholic or any other Christian denomination will tell you that you are wrong. I can't believe that you would base the truth of your ideas on their permanence.

Btw happy winter solstice to you, and all here.
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Offline Antidote

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #141 on: December 25, 2013, 03:05:23 PM »
If I'm not mistaken it was Aristotle who made the discovery that the earth was, in fact, round; and made the incredibly accurate calculation of the earth's overall size.

I don't know who first determined that it was round, but it was Eratosthenes who made the famous measurement. It's roundness was already known at that point, but I don't know for how long. I suspect that the roundness of the earth has been figured out independently by multiple people, perhaps even in prehistoric times, because there are several clues to it that do not require any special modern equipment to observe. Some that come to mind are:

1. The shadow of the earth on the moon during a lunar eclipse.
2. Ships disappearing below the horizon before they become too small to see.
3. The curvature of the horizon is actually visible from high places, such as mountaintops, especially if you have a flat landscape to observe, such as an ocean. It's subtle, and the opportunities to see it are few, but it is visible without any special tools. Surely some ancient persons noticed this and pondered what it means.
4. The difference in the position of constellations when viewed from different latitudes. Ancient peoples would have traveled much less, but they likely had much better familiarity with the night sky, so it would almost certainly have been noticed by those few who did make significant north-south treks.

Ah, I always seem to confuse the two of them, don't know why :/
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Offline magicmiles

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #142 on: December 26, 2013, 05:56:37 PM »
Devil's advocate question:

Why is it bad to harm somebody? If I thought it was good to harm somebody, why would I be wrong?

Because taking pleasure from harming others is a maladaptive behavior in a social species like humans. It can be beneficial for the abuser / criminal in the short term, but the pain and loss it causes others provokes defensive behavior. Thus, prisons and (ideally) rehabilitation.

As has been pointed out, this goes more towards explaining why some actions are harmful (and I realise you provided a fiollow up comment, but seeing as how the thread has gotten away from me a bit and probably fizzled out, I am going to to just make a few comments here and let it go - unless someone is keen to re-engage)

I come across this sort of thinking quite often. My brother in particular pretty much refuses to even use the word 'wrong'. He talks about bevhavious as helpful or unhelpful. But I think we can't escape the fact that when we hear of certain things having happened, atrocities committed, pain inflicted - the intense feelings we experience, the anger, the sorrow, the horror - CANNOT be adequately explained by saying that they are a reaction to those behaviours being 'unhelpful' or 'harmful to the species'. No. They relect a knowledge we harbour within ourselves that there is an unspeakable evil pervading our world, and most of us wish to fight against it. We hate it. We know it isn't right.

Where it becomes difficult for so many of us, though, is that we are determined to be the ones to decide what is right and wrong. The suggestion that there is a God who makes that decision, who sets the standard, does not sit well with us. But there is a massive flaw in that thinking, that determination to be the arbiters of right and wrong. When we hear of the evils in the world, if we are honest, we are not appaleed that someone has acted against what WE have decided is good  - rather, we are appalled that someone has committed an acty which re recognise is unambiguoulsy, objectively wrong. And that objective wrong is very, very difficult to reconcile with a Godless world which is nothing more than atoms and cells.

The 2010 world cup was ruined for me by that slippery bastard Paul.

Offline magicmiles

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #143 on: December 26, 2013, 06:04:09 PM »
Devil's advocate question:

Why is it bad to harm somebody? If I thought it was good to harm somebody, why would I be wrong?

I keep seeing this quote, how about this MM, but before I provide the hypothetical, you are NOT allowed to use your religion, god, or bible as a means of morality.

Now for the hypothetical:
What would you do if I flew to Australia tonight, broke into your home, injured you, and robbed you of all of your possessions? How would you feel? Is it right? Wrong? Why do you think so?


Do you see the problem with your "devil's advocate" approach?

I can't possibly respond to any question of right and wrong with the limits you impose. Its a stupid thing to suggest.
The 2010 world cup was ruined for me by that slippery bastard Paul.

Offline Foxy Freedom

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Re: Why there is No such thing as a good atheist
« Reply #144 on: December 26, 2013, 06:59:39 PM »
Devil's advocate question:

Why is it bad to harm somebody? If I thought it was good to harm somebody, why would I be wrong?

Because taking pleasure from harming others is a maladaptive behavior in a social species like humans. It can be beneficial for the abuser / criminal in the short term, but the pain and loss it causes others provokes defensive behavior. Thus, prisons and (ideally) rehabilitation.

As has been pointed out, this goes more towards explaining why some actions are harmful (and I realise you provided a fiollow up comment, but seeing as how the thread has gotten away from me a bit and probably fizzled out, I am going to to just make a few comments here and let it go - unless someone is keen to re-engage)

I come across this sort of thinking quite often. My brother in particular pretty much refuses to even use the word 'wrong'. He talks about bevhavious as helpful or unhelpful. But I think we can't escape the fact that when we hear of certain things having happened, atrocities committed, pain inflicted - the intense feelings we experience, the anger, the sorrow, the horror - CANNOT be adequately explained by saying that they are a reaction to those behaviours being 'unhelpful' or 'harmful to the species'. No. They relect a knowledge we harbour within ourselves that there is an unspeakable evil pervading our world, and most of us wish to fight against it. We hate it. We know it isn't right.

Where it becomes difficult for so many of us, though, is that we are determined to be the ones to decide what is right and wrong. The suggestion that there is a God who makes that decision, who sets the standard, does not sit well with us. But there is a massive flaw in that thinking, that determination to be the arbiters of right and wrong. When we hear of the evils in the world, if we are honest, we are not appaleed that someone has acted against what WE have decided is good  - rather, we are appalled that someone has committed an acty which re recognise is unambiguoulsy, objectively wrong. And that objective wrong is very, very difficult to reconcile with a Godless world which is nothing more than atoms and cells.

So you recognise something as objectively wrong? Pure stupidity. Everything you have ever thought of as objectively wrong, another person has fought for as objectively right.

If people like you want to impose your objective morality on the world, many people will fight to the death to preserve democracy against such a dictatorship.

« Last Edit: December 26, 2013, 07:03:02 PM by Foxy Freedom »
Neither Foxy Freedom nor any associates can be reached via WWGHA. Their official antitheist website is http://the6antitheist6guide6.blogspot.co.uk

The 2nd edition of the free ebook Devil or Delusion ? The danger of Christianity to Democracy Freedom and Science.       http://t.co/2d1KcJ9V