Author Topic: Probabilities of God's existence debate  (Read 45248 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online JeffPT

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2024
  • Darwins +203/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm a lead farmer mutha fucka
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1595 on: September 09, 2014, 10:12:42 PM »
Removed... double post
Whenever events that are purported to occur in our best interest are as numerous as the events that will just as soon kill us, then intent is hard, if not impossible to assert. NDT

Online nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6512
  • Darwins +849/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1596 on: September 10, 2014, 12:46:58 AM »
I would take issue with the idea that most people feel god. I never did, although I acted the way everyone else did who said they felt god. I was faking it.[1] I wonder how many other people are also faking it, because it is so clearly normal for "most people to feel god"?

Let me give an example. You know the Batman symbol? The black and yellow logo? The only reason we think it looks like a bat is because people say it is a bat. Everyone sees a bat, right? Wrong. It looks like a black Rorshach blot on a yellow background.

My sister confided to me, some years ago, at one of the Batman movies, that she has never seen a bat in the logo. To her it has always looked like an open mouth with two teeth on top and four teeth on the bottom.[2]

I looked at her like she had just told me she was actually from Mars--she didn't see the bat? Really? How could anyone not see the bat? Then I looked and, with difficulty, "saw" what she saw. Okay, it could sorta be teeth, but why would they draw big yellow teeth and say it was a bat? Like a comedy routine, my sister said, "That's what I have been wondering all my life!" ;D

So, why did she act like she saw the bat all those years when she didn't? She said she always acted like she saw the bat because, from the time we were kids, everyone else said it was a bat, and so she got used to pretending she saw it, too. But to this day, she still can't see a bat in the logo. There have to be other people like my sister who don't see the bat, but who pretend to. Maybe 4%, 10% or 25% or even 30%? Who knows? If you, like my sister, don't see the bat, you are probably too embarrassed to admit it.

That is the way it has to be with god-feeling. If you don't have it, you are like the weirdo who refuses to wear jeans, or doesn't like chocolate. Out of step with everyone else.  God-feeling is supposed to be part of normal life, so if you don't have it, you probably have to fake it. Especially in a really religious family and/or a really religious culture.

Can you imagine how scary it would be to realize, at the age or 8 or 15 or 28 that you don't feel god-- in Utah, Iran or Uganda? Would you ever tell anyone? Hell no.

My sister lied benignly all those years (acting as if she saw the bat) about something that was not even that important. Nobody would fire her from her job, call her names, shun her, divorce her, run her out of town, take her kids away, throw her in jail or burn her at the stake for not seeing the bat symbol. But all those things have happened to people for not having the god-feeling.

So, everyone goes along thinking everyone else feels god, because nobody ever says they don't. That is why we  who don't have to make sure we say we don't. Whenever possible. Not everyone sees the bat, and that's okay.
 1. The sad and funny part is that nobody can tell that you are faking it. Fake faith looks exactly the same as real faith. What does that tell you?
 2. Now that you have heard that, look at the logos and you will probably be able to see the mouth, too. At least one other person evidently also sees the resemblance to teeth and has put the logo next to an open mouth!  https://www.google.com/search?q=batman+symbol&biw=1115&bih=718&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=ct0PVLDOPInIiwKwjYC4Cw&ved=0CB0QsAQ
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.

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1597 on: September 11, 2014, 12:31:10 PM »
I'd like to take on the very first miracle I read about at the following website, Luk. 

http://www.miraclehunter.com/marian_apparitions/approved_apparitions/lourdes/miracles1.html#latapie
[...]
So many of them are like this.  Easy to tear down. 
Could you educate yourself a little bit more than one Internet page excerpt on the subject of this miracle? Maybe go to the library, read a book about it and quote it back to us?
Who knows maybe you will find answers to your questions while you dig just a little on the subject instead of claiming things without knowledge of what exactly happened.
You're worth more than my time

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1598 on: September 11, 2014, 12:58:53 PM »
You are very welcome, Lukvance.

You are consistently a most polite and endearing theist, even as you exhibit the most ignorant, obtuse and frustrating communication style I have ever encountered on this board.  Jst and skeptic should send you money for making them seem so much more reasonable by comparison. If I believed in saints, I would nominate Old Church Guy to replace that nasty piece of work, Mother Teresa.

Even though I have you in ignore mode because dealing with you is too much like revisiting my years as a social worker,  I still interact with you. Despite my lack of faith, I still have hope. [1]

I assume you understand that you could never argue a blind person into "seeing" the color blue, let alone the color invisible. (And actually, the color invisible is a more accurate analogy than blue because nobody has ever seen a god, while people have seen what appears to human eyes to be blue. How can anyone see something immaterial, invisible and supernatural?) Imagine someone beating up or torturing a blind person into seeing colors. No matter how hard they try, the blind will never be able to see any color--blue or invisible or whatever-- it is not possible for them to see it.  They will finally say they see blue, or even invisible, just to get the torture to stop, but they will be lying.

Given that we atheists cannot sense any gods and are basically "god-blind" (and "god-deaf", etc.) you cannot hope to argue or logically trap or browbeat us into believing in any gods. All the societies that have persecuted and tortured people for not believing in a particular god, for questioning religious ideas, or for being atheists have been basically beating up blind people for "refusing" to see the color blue or the color invisible.

Lots of people have been beating up on the blind for not seeing colors: Catholic countries with their history of mistreating non-Catholics or dissenters by purges, elaborate tortures, imprisonings, inquisitions, burnings at the stake; Muslim countries with official state religions, apostasy laws and death sentences for atheists; Hindu India persecuting Muslims and Sikhs; Christians--both Catholics and Protestants in the Americas forcing their religions onto the indigenous folks; everyone kidnaping and enslaving people, then making them accept a foreign religion, and on and on. [2]

I hope you also realize that, unlike the people who beat up on the blind, we atheists generally do not try to force other people to not see the color invisible, even though we don't see it.  If they say they do, so be it. Just like the blind person can acknowledge that other people see colors out there, even though they themselves can't see them.

We atheists can find no evidence of any color invisible (gods), but most of us will acknowledge that there is a possibility that there is some sort of god out there, somewhere. What we are saying is that the gods that people describe to us do not seem to be real. The stuff people say that gods do, seem to have other more likely explanations. Down through the ages, people have continually discovered better explanations--with far stronger evidence-- than gods for all sorts of things, over and over again.

What we are trying to do is get religious folks to only apply the same standards for their belief in gods as they would to a new recipe, a brand of toothpaste, a headache pill, a pair of running shoes, a cell phone, a car or any household appliance. What people who believe in gods call evidence is lame and weak and does not pass as evidence in other areas of those same people's lives. Nobody would accept a 2% success rate (98% of the time it fails) or even a 20% success rate for a brownie recipe or a cell phone. Why accept a rate like that for prayer, as if it does not matter that an all powerful, loving god fails 98% or 80% of the time, requiring people to make excuses as to why they have to take care of whatever themselves?[3]

And if the rate of magical success is really high enough to warrant belief in a supernatural god, it should be easy to demonstrate it with simple scientific tools. Just like a car or a headache pill. It works or it doesn't. No fancy dancing or excuses.
 1. You remind me of some of my more challenging relatives. Can't live with 'em. Can't shoot 'em. I try to avoid negativity and name-calling, but I do have to admit that I am using you as the template for a character in one of the fiction pieces I am writing--I may have to have you virtually bumped off in some nasty manner so I can continue to be civil to you.
 2. We can even throw in secular dictatorships like Pol Pot's regime, Mao's Cultural revolution and North Korea, because they also beat up the blind for not seeing the color blue-- only "blue" was the dictator's preferred ideology instead of a god-belief.
 3. In truth, if prayer yielded positive supernatural results a consistent 10% of the time, and failed 90% of the time, it would still be fantastic success rate. Imagine if we could save 10% of the victims of ebola, and heal 10% of amputees, and reverse 10% of spinal cord paralysis patients, and cure 10% of autistic kids with prayer alone! Damn, 10% of babies with cleft palate, 10% of traumatic brain injury! How about instantly ending famine in 10% of cases by having magic food appear from the sky? 10% of evil warlords spontaneously combust before they torch a village. Way better than prayer's current 0% rate of success for those conditions. How about having 10% of child molester's d!cks fall off? I'd worship that god!
You are mostly right. I dislike the fact that you are associating Christianity in the past with Christianity today. That you blame them for mistake they made in the past. Mistakes that you, yourself do not suffer from while you get all the benefits that brings Christian religion today. (social security/services, health services... and so on)
I think it is unfair.
You are correct to say that blind people will never see blue and we cannot force them to see blue.
I am not here to force you to believe in God. If you still think that I am writing theses post with that goal in mind then you are mistaken.
I am here to prove to you that God is real. Can you prove to a blind person that blue exist? I hope so, since it does...right?
I hope you understand that a blind man that doesn't want to believe that blue exist will always have enough argument to say that it doesn't exist. Every argument you will bring to him, even if it's EVIDENCE of the existence of blue could be dismissed as long as he does not want to believe.
You're worth more than my time

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1599 on: September 11, 2014, 01:29:52 PM »
I think the other thing that Lukvance needs to realize from this blindness analogy is the impact that it has on his discussions he's had on free will and choosing god.

Imagine someone presenting a blind person with the following scenario:
"There are two doors in this room.  You are free to choose to go through either the correct door or the incorrect door.  The correct door is blue.  The incorrect door is red.  Going through the correct door will lead to fabulous prizes.  Going through the incorrect door will lead to not fabulous prizes.  Make your choice and accept the consequences - good or bad."
I like the scenario. The blind guy might have to trust me when I guide him to the door that is blue (the one he chose). In any case he will have to believe that blue exist before choosing the blue door.
You're worth more than my time

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1600 on: September 11, 2014, 01:54:47 PM »
So you are saying that you have to first believe in God in order to 'feel' God as an emotion inside your brain, correct?  Do you know of any other thing in the universe that you have to first believe in in order to feel it?  That's a very strange proposition, don't you think? 
Not at all. Do you have to believe in love to be able to feel it? Does every emotions works that way?
I believe there is a mistake in your phrasing here, I don't have to believe in God exactly. God is the name of the source. Not the name of the feeling. I named it God. You might name it "nature" or "evolution" or "nothing".

You think it's fortunate that most people believe in god?  Really?  Why don't you ask the Shiites living in Iraq and Syria about how fortunate they are that so many people believe in god?

No Luk.  By in large, religion has been, and still is a cancer on the world.  Yes, yours too.   ;)
Right. You small thinking, self centered person. Only those see the wrong in the world and turn a blind eye on the good. There are billions of people on earth, how many Shiites? Do the math! Oh, and ask them about their faith too, if they feel fortunate or not to have it. You might be surprised from the answer you'd get.

Your feelings have nothing to do with whether or not God exists in the mind our outside of it. 
You might be wrong here. Feelings have everything to do with the proof of the existence of "God at least as real as feelings".

Alright, that's fine then.  As long as you are willing to admit that the feelings you have inside you that you attribute to God are in no way proof that God is real; nor is there any evidence at all that those feelings are actually coming from God. 
I will be ready to admitt that " the feelings you have inside you that you attribute to God are in no way proof that God is real" if you admit that the feelings you have inside you that you attribute to Anger or love are in no way proof that they are real.
You're worth more than my time

Offline Boots

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1283
  • Darwins +95/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • Living the Dream
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1601 on: September 11, 2014, 02:38:25 PM »
I am here to prove to you that God is real. Can you prove to a blind person that blue exist? I hope so, since it does...right?

If someone is simply incapable of sensing something--in this case, a blind person and the color blue--what evidence could you produce to prove to them that "color" exists, let alone "blue?"

Yes, the sighted know it exists, but the color blue has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on the life of a blind person--so to him, it may as well NOT exist.  It does nothing, affects nothing, changes nothing, to the blind person.

when it comes to god, we are all blind.  Folks like yourself can claim a feeling is evidence of god, but it's like saying to a blind person that a smell is evidence of a color--there is no connection between the two.

Quote from: Lukevance
I will be ready to admitt that " the feelings you have inside you that you attribute to God are in no way proof that God is real" if you admit that the feelings you have inside you that you attribute to call Anger or love are in no way proof that they are real.

Fixed your strawman/non-sequitor combo there.  I don't attribute my feelings to something called "anger," "anger" is a convenient label for those feelings.   I could call that set of feelings "Harry Dresden" and, although no one would understand what I was talking about, the feelings still exist.
* Religion: institutionalized superstition, period.

"Many of my ultra-conservative Republican friends...have trouble accepting the idea God is not a Republican. " ~OldChurchGuy

"We humans may never figure out the truth, but I prefer trying to find it over pretending we know it."  ~ParkingPlaces

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1602 on: September 11, 2014, 04:45:19 PM »
I am here to prove to you that God is real. Can you prove to a blind person that blue exist? I hope so, since it does...right?

If someone is simply incapable of sensing something--in this case, a blind person and the color blue--what evidence could you produce to prove to them that "color" exists, let alone "blue?"
Exactly, it is not because you cannot present satisfying evidence that the thing does not exist. Same goes for God. You might think that you don't have enough satisfying evidence of his existence but it doesn't change the fact that he exist...at least as much as blue or love or anger or... etc



Fixed your strawman/non-sequitor combo there.  I don't attribute my feelings to something called "anger," "anger" is a convenient label for those feelings.   I could call that set of feelings "Harry Dresden" and, although no one would understand what I was talking about, the feelings still exist.
Same goes for God.
You're worth more than my time

Online JeffPT

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2024
  • Darwins +203/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm a lead farmer mutha fucka
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1603 on: September 11, 2014, 10:00:10 PM »
So you are saying that you have to first believe in God in order to 'feel' God as an emotion inside your brain, correct?  Do you know of any other thing in the universe that you have to first believe in in order to feel it?  That's a very strange proposition, don't you think? 
Not at all. Do you have to believe in love to be able to feel it? Does every emotions works that way?
I believe there is a mistake in your phrasing here, I don't have to believe in God exactly. God is the name of the source. Not the name of the feeling. I named it God. You might name it "nature" or "evolution" or "nothing".

Do all feelings need a source?  Are there any feelings that you simply accept as happening naturally or that you don't claim to know the source of?  What source name do you give to emotions like hate, spite, anger?  Or boredom, hunger and melancholy?   

You think it's fortunate that most people believe in god?  Really?  Why don't you ask the Shiites living in Iraq and Syria about how fortunate they are that so many people believe in god?

No Luk.  By in large, religion has been, and still is a cancer on the world.  Yes, yours too.   ;)
Right. You small thinking, self centered person. Only those see the wrong in the world and turn a blind eye on the good.
I'm not turning a blind eye to the good at all.  I'm simply assessing both sides of the argument in determining my opinion of your religion. 

Let's say we have a company that gives millions of dollars every year to charity, but as a result of their day to day operations, a million people a year are killed by the company.  Is it 'only seeing the wrong in the world and turning a blind eye to the good' to judge this company as bad for the world, or is it just being realistic and truthful?  If I ran this company and told you that you were a small thinking, self centered person for ignoring all the good that we do, what would you say back to me? 

You don't see the wrong that religion does (especially yours) because you have your Catholic blinders on and block out the bad.  But don't get mad at the rest of us for not wearing those goggles.  Some of us prefer to know both sides of an issue before judging it. You can't assess religion honestly without taking EVERYTHING about it into consideration.  If you add up all the good that religion (Catholicism too) has ever done, and all the bad that religion (Catholicism too) has ever done, then its not close. It's certainly a net loss for the world.  You'll never see it though because you don't look for it.  But it's there.       

Your feelings have nothing to do with whether or not God exists in the mind our outside of it. 
You might be wrong here. Feelings have everything to do with the proof of the existence of "God at least as real as feelings".

No Luk.  Nooooo it doesn't.  You should really stop that whole 'at least as real as feelings' thing now because you immediately lost that battle the moment you said that you don't actually feel god; you just have feelings that you say God is the source of.  Remember your words here...
Quote
God is the name of the source. Not the name of the feeling.
In that respect, you're no longer saying you feel God.  You're saying you feel something, and God is the one who puts that feeling inside you, which is nothing more than an unsupported assertion. In other words, when I ask you what it's like to feel God, that's not actually the question you will answer.  You will answer with some sort of feeling that you believe God gave you. All you know is that you feel stuff (which is fine to assert, and easy to accept) and sometimes, if the feeling is the right one, you say 'God made me feel that way'. 

Feelings are as real as feelings. God isn't a feeling; according to you, he's the source of the feeling.  I agree that feelings exist, but I do not accept that God is the source of them.  So God is not as real as feelings. 

We all agree that feelings exist inside our minds.  But their existence don't serve as proof of where they came from.  The feelings are not proof of who gave you those feelings, or if they were 'given' to you at all.   

It's no different than saying 'Zeus's touch' makes me feel horny, and claiming that this means that Zeus is at least as real as feeling horny.  No.  In that scenario, I don't actually feel Zeus; what I feel is horny, and I attribute that feeling to Zeus.  Thank you Zeus!  But the idea that it came from Zeus is nothing more than an unsupported assertion on my part, don't you think?  Do you see that?  Does my assertion that Zeus is responsible for that feeling PROVE that the feeling came from Zeus?  Of course not.  It is the same with you.  Your assertion that God is responsible for you having certain feelings is not proof that God is responsible for you having certain feelings. 
Whenever events that are purported to occur in our best interest are as numerous as the events that will just as soon kill us, then intent is hard, if not impossible to assert. NDT

Online JeffPT

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2024
  • Darwins +203/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm a lead farmer mutha fucka
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1604 on: September 11, 2014, 10:05:25 PM »
Could you educate yourself a little bit more than one Internet page excerpt on the subject of this miracle? Maybe go to the library, read a book about it and quote it back to us?
Who knows maybe you will find answers to your questions while you dig just a little on the subject instead of claiming things without knowledge of what exactly happened.

Send me a link of what you believe would be appropriate reading material regarding this particular miracle.  Or better yet, since I'm sure you've read books about this miracle that I haven't (else it would be crazy to tell ME to read a book about it when you yourself haven't), why don't you tell me the evidence you've encountered from the vast library of books you've read about this particular miracle that led to the unassailable conclusion that the only explanation could be the Catholic version of God.  I don't need every bit of evidence here... just the stuff that convinced you. 
Whenever events that are purported to occur in our best interest are as numerous as the events that will just as soon kill us, then intent is hard, if not impossible to assert. NDT

Online nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6512
  • Darwins +849/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1605 on: September 12, 2014, 02:18:25 PM »
You are mostly right. I dislike the fact that you are associating Christianity in the past with Christianity today. That you blame them for mistake they made in the past. Mistakes that you, yourself do not suffer from while you get all the benefits that brings Christian religion today. (social security/services, health services... and so on)
I think it is unfair.
I guess you could call killing entire towns of people for not being Catholic a "mistake". And burning thousands of women as witches, after torturing confessions of witchcraft out of them would definitely qualify as a "mistake". Not to mention the oppression, slavery and forced conversion of millions of indigenous people around the world. Certainly a "mistake".

However, you cannot overlook the fact that many of those "mistakes" the Catholics made in the past were because they sincerely thought that they were doing the will of their god. And you yourself agree that they did horrible, horrible things.

How do Catholics today, also sincerely sure that they are doing what their god wants them to do,  know that they are not also making terrible mistakes? Will the Lukvances of the 23rd century be trying to explain to the nogodsformes of the 23rd century that, yeah,  the Catholic church of 200 years ago denied birth control to millions of people (causing suffering, death and orphaned or abandoned kids), and lied to people about STD's (leading to thousands of cases of AIDS causing more suffering, death and orphaned or abandoned kids), and mistreated gays, but those were just some "mistakes" and should be left in the past?

Because Catholics back then also ran hospitals and charities. So that makes everything okay, on balance. Do Catholics believe that good works erase sinful acts? That all you have to do is make sure there is a balance? Very Taoist. I did not know that Catholics were Taoists. I learn something new every day on this site..... :?
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.

Offline Boots

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1283
  • Darwins +95/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • Living the Dream
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1606 on: September 12, 2014, 03:02:15 PM »
I am here to prove to you that God is real. Can you prove to a blind person that blue exist? I hope so, since it does...right?

If someone is simply incapable of sensing something--in this case, a blind person and the color blue--what evidence could you produce to prove to them that "color" exists, let alone "blue?"
Exactly, it is not because you cannot present satisfying evidence that the thing does not exist. Same goes for God. You might think that you don't have enough satisfying evidence of his existence but it doesn't change the fact that he exist...at least as much as blue or love or anger or... etc

I can't even comprehend the level of complete and utter bullshit this is.

"Blue" has absolutley no impact on the life of a blind person.  Whether "blue" exists is totally irrelevant for a blind person.  "Blue" won't send you to hell because you don't believe in it.  "Blue" hasn't claimed to answer prayers or perform miracles.

You specifically said you are here to prove that god is real.  Your having feelings is evidence that FEELINGS EXIST.  Your attributing those feelings to an ill-defined thing you choose to call "god" is absolutley no different than me attributing those feelings to Harry Dresden, and every bit as meaningless. (Except that Harry Dresden is far better defined than "god")



Quote
Fixed your strawman/non-sequitor combo there.  I don't attribute my feelings to something called "anger," "anger" is a convenient label for those feelings.   I could call that set of feelings "Harry Dresden" and, although no one would understand what I was talking about, the feelings still exist.
Same goes for God.

This is NOT EVEN CLOSE TO THE SAME THING.  You are taking a feeling, and attributing it to something you're calling "god" with no evidence that this "god" character IS DOING ANYTHING, or even exists, let alone causing those specific feelings.  As far as you know, simply contemplating the possibility of the divine is what is causing those feelings.  Or it could be what you had for lunch that day.
* Religion: institutionalized superstition, period.

"Many of my ultra-conservative Republican friends...have trouble accepting the idea God is not a Republican. " ~OldChurchGuy

"We humans may never figure out the truth, but I prefer trying to find it over pretending we know it."  ~ParkingPlaces

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1607 on: September 15, 2014, 02:23:14 PM »
Do all feelings need a source?  Are there any feelings that you simply accept as happening naturally or that you don't claim to know the source of?  What source name do you give to emotions like hate, spite, anger?  Or boredom, hunger and melancholy?
I think you are stuck with the idea that God is good and that all that is good is God. That's not what I am talking about here. I am talking about the existence of God not his nature.
Emotions can have multiple sources. Each one is different than the other. The source of my anger could have been someone or could have been God.

I'm not turning a blind eye to the good at all.  I'm simply assessing both sides of the argument in determining my opinion of your religion.
That is great. Maybe you could assess it with numbers. To have an idea of how important (or not) your assessment is.
Let's say we have a company that gives millions of dollars every year to charity, but as a result of their day to day operations, a million people a year are killed by the company.  Is it 'only seeing the wrong in the world and turning a blind eye to the good' to judge this company as bad for the world, or is it just being realistic and truthful?  If I ran this company and told you that you were a small thinking, self centered person for ignoring all the good that we do, what would you say back to me? 
I'd ask how much good and how much bad does it do? If it's 1 million $ per person "killed", it should be different than 1$ per person "killed".

If you add up all the good that religion (Catholicism too) has ever done, and all the bad that religion (Catholicism too) has ever done, then its not close. It's certainly a net loss for the world.
That's where you are wrong. I made the add up. Did you? Try this for starter, only in the us how much money is spend by the Religion vs money spent by people for "good causes"?

You're saying you feel something, and God is the one who puts that feeling inside you, which is nothing more than an unsupported assertion. In other words, when I ask you what it's like to feel God, that's not actually the question you will answer.  You will answer with some sort of feeling that you believe God gave you. All you know is that you feel stuff (which is fine to assert, and easy to accept) and sometimes, if the feeling is the right one, you say 'God made me feel that way'. 
Exact.

Feelings are as real as feelings. God isn't a feeling; according to you, he's the source of the feeling.  I agree that feelings exist, but I do not accept that God is the source of them.  So God is not as real as feelings. 
I believe there is a mistake here. You are proving that God is not a feeling here and we agree on that. "God is not a feeling" doesn't mean that "God is not as real as feeling".

We all agree that feelings exist inside our minds.
Yep, and so does God!
But their existence don't serve as proof of where they came from.  The feelings are not proof of who gave you those feelings, or if they were 'given' to you at all.
I agree.

Your assertion that God is responsible for you having certain feelings is not proof that God is responsible for you having certain feelings.
I agree.
Do you agree that the assertion that you having a feeling is not proof that this feeling is real?
If it does make it real, we (believers) can feel God, (careful I am saying something different than what you were arguing about before and I agreed with you, I am not talking about a feeling induced by God anymore here)talk to him, interact with him. We feel him at least as much as we can feel any feelings. Why doesn't that make him real?
You're worth more than my time

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1608 on: September 15, 2014, 02:28:37 PM »
Send me a link of what you believe would be appropriate reading material regarding this particular miracle.  Or better yet, since I'm sure you've read books about this miracle that I haven't (else it would be crazy to tell ME to read a book about it when you yourself haven't), why don't you tell me the evidence you've encountered from the vast library of books you've read about this particular miracle that led to the unassailable conclusion that the only explanation could be the Catholic version of God.  I don't need every bit of evidence here... just the stuff that convinced you. 
I talked with a theologian. He did all the reading and the reading quoting necessary to convince me.
If you don't want to look for yourself you could ask someone who did. I had a book written by an atheist that were talking about miracles, maybe not that particular ones but miracles in general, it was a fun read, you should read it : Dr. Jacalyn Duffin "Medical Miracles: Doctors, Saints, and Healing in the Modern World" http://www.amazon.com/Medical-Miracles-Doctors-Saints-Healing/dp/019533650X/ref=la_B001HMRLP2_1_1/178-6591015-0059120?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1410809284&sr=1-1
You're worth more than my time

Online nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6512
  • Darwins +849/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1609 on: September 15, 2014, 03:13:14 PM »
NO, NO, NO!

Lukvance, I have worked with many Catholics in different countries and I know some of the good things they do. I have a lot of respect for nuns particularly who truly act as though their faith is real. I have supported several Catholic projects financially because they do good work.

But having said that, you cannot possibly add up the amount of money spent by the Catholic church on its good works and balance it with:

a) the millions of dead and enslaved indigenous people around the world, who were forcibly converted away from their own beliefs and had their cultures destroyed,
b) the thousands tortured, maimed and killed for disagreeing with the Catholics or not being the right kind of Christian,
c) the hundreds of children abused and damaged psychologically by nuns and priests who had absolute power in many communities,
d) the millions of people who still suffer from the backward teaching about sexuality and reproduction.

No amount of money donated to charity can make up for that.

And that is just the Catholics.

Protestants, Hindus, Muslims and various indigenous religions have their own lists of bad.
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.

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1610 on: September 15, 2014, 04:58:50 PM »
NO, NO, NO!

Lukvance, I have worked with many Catholics in different countries and I know some of the good things they do. I have a lot of respect for nuns particularly who truly act as though their faith is real. I have supported several Catholic projects financially because they do good work.

But having said that, you cannot possibly add up the amount of money spent by the Catholic church on its good works and balance it with:

a) the millions of dead and enslaved indigenous people around the world, who were forcibly converted away from their own beliefs and had their cultures destroyed,
b) the thousands tortured, maimed and killed for disagreeing with the Catholics or not being the right kind of Christian,
c) the hundreds of children abused and damaged psychologically by nuns and priests who had absolute power in many communities,
d) the millions of people who still suffer from the backward teaching about sexuality and reproduction.

No amount of money donated to charity can make up for that.

And that is just the Catholics.

Protestants, Hindus, Muslims and various indigenous religions have their own lists of bad.
You are right. A kids life is priceless. Nevertheless you have to be fair and recognize that there is more good done by the church than bad. If you don't, you are lying to yourself just so you can feel good about bitching against them.
You know first hand that many Hospitals couldn't even survive without the help of the church, right?
Should they stop helping because anyway no one is recognizing the good work they do and they all underline the bad things that is happening?
You're worth more than my time

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1611 on: September 15, 2014, 05:04:46 PM »
"Blue" has absolutley no impact on the life of a blind person.  Whether "blue" exists is totally irrelevant for a blind person. 
That is false. Talk to any blind women they will tell you how important it is to know the color of what they are wearing. Also it is important to know the color of what they are about to eat. Anyway blue is as important for blind people than for non blind people. Nevertheless, I agree that in a society were everyone is blind the color blue is irrelevant.
You're worth more than my time

Offline One Above All

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 10942
  • Darwins +284/-37
  • Gender: Male
  • Supreme ruler of the multiverse; All In One
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1612 on: September 15, 2014, 06:17:25 PM »
You are right. A kids life is priceless. Nevertheless you have to be fair and recognize that there is more good done by the church than bad. If you don't, you are lying to yourself just so you can feel good about bitching against them.
You know first hand that many Hospitals couldn't even survive without the help of the church, right?
Should they stop helping because anyway no one is recognizing the good work they do and they all underline the bad things that is happening?

On the one hand, you say that a child's life is priceless. In the very next sentence, you try to compare the child's lost and/or ruined life with the good the church may have done. If you don't see what's wrong with this, you're hopelessly retarded and should be instituted.
Also, helping several people while murdering slightly less doesn't make you a good person or entity. If I slaughtered your entire family, then saved ten more, would I be a good person? The answer is no.
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
We choose our own gods.

A.K.A.: Blaziken_rjcf/Lucifer/All In One.

Online nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6512
  • Darwins +849/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1613 on: September 15, 2014, 07:26:19 PM »
The big, big, big point you are missing here, Lukvance, is not about how much good churches do, compared to how much bad. There should not be any bad, let alone the horrible amount of bad I listed above! The point you keep missing is that there should not even be the need to weigh the good versus the bad. That is what we do with an ordinary imperfect human life. She was kind of a beeyatch but left all her money to the park and library. Well, he really loved his wife and kids, but he drank a lot and could not hold a job. We balance out good vs bad with imperfect human beings. We should not have to do that with anyone claiming to represent a perfect god!

Can't you see that the Catholic church should not have done all those evil things to begin with. If it was really guided by a perfect, all powerful magical god, there should not ever have been the torture, enslavement, killing, crusades, inquisitions and on and on. It was the one and only true source of god and all that was good. No perfect god would ever have let his representatives on earth make that many goddamn "mistakes" in his holy name.  People believed the priests, nuns, popes and bishops were doing the will of god, even as people were being tortured, enslaved and slaughtered. Meanwhile,  they also did some good things, like pretty much all religious organizations, and like pretty much all non-religious organizations.

That is the point you keep missing: the Catholic church, supposedly run by extra-ordinary, extra-specially chosen holy people and guided by the best possible being (as you have insisted) is just as screwed up and no better than any other organization run by ordinary, non-special, non-holy people. You should not have to be trying to justify a perfect organization guided by god as if it was a flawed, ordinary human institution like a city council, a law firm or a restaurant. That is why people get extra-specially pissed off about priests abusing kids and getting away with it. Priests are supposed to be better than everyone else, not exactly the same as the old pervert in the next block.

I am not singling out the Catholics as especially bad. I am saying the Catholics are no better than anyone else. And that proves that there is no special blessing or benefit to being Catholic compared to being anything else. Furthermore, no religions do better than non-religious organizations performing the same functions of health care, education, or social services.

Sure, religious institutions are better in most cases than no services at all. But that is not saying much for a perfect, all powerful god, is it? Because if there was a perfect god behind one organization, and no perfect  god (or fake gods) behind the others, you would not have well-organized, well-run secular schools and hospitals in Sweden and Japan educating kids better, or saving more lives than those in countries where Catholics predominate like the Philippines and Brazil.

How about religions start using this honest slogan:
"God-- he's better than nothing. And his people only screw up as often as everyone else, except when they screw up worse."  &)
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.

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1614 on: September 15, 2014, 08:32:55 PM »
The big, big, big point you are missing here, Lukvance, is not about how much good churches do, compared to how much bad. There should not be any bad, let alone the horrible amount of bad I listed above! The point you keep missing is that there should not even be the need to weigh the good versus the bad. That is what we do with an ordinary imperfect human life. She was kind of a beeyatch but left all her money to the park and library. Well, he really loved his wife and kids, but he drank a lot and could not hold a job. We balance out good vs bad with imperfect human beings. We should not have to do that with anyone claiming to represent a perfect god!
As if the bad was made by God. God does not make the bad. Humans do. Are you perfect? I'm not and I weigh my value on the fact that I do more good than bad. I won't blame your family because your cousin is a murderer. I won't blame your political party nor any kind of group you might be with because of what they have done bad UNLESS the bad outweigh the good they bring into the world.
You don't hold much importance to your family or any other group but feels that Christianity should be more important and should then be judge more severly? Ok, you are allowed to do that. But you are making a mistake in doing so.
You're worth more than my time

Offline Astreja

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2999
  • Darwins +265/-3
  • Gender: Female
  • Agnostic goddess with Clue-by-Four™
    • The Springy Goddess
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1615 on: September 15, 2014, 09:37:33 PM »
Can't you see that the Catholic church should not have done all those evil things to begin with. If it was really guided by a perfect, all powerful magical god, there should not ever have been the torture, enslavement, killing, crusades, inquisitions and on and on.

This can't be stated enough, IMO.  A god that can't even rein in its own followers is frightfully incompetent and untrustworthy.
Reality Checkroom — Not Responsible for Lost Articles

Offline ParkingPlaces

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6365
  • Darwins +748/-6
  • Gender: Male
  • Hide and Seek World Champion since 1958!
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1616 on: September 15, 2014, 09:45:03 PM »
If there is a christian god, he is omni-incompetent, or he just doesn't care.

If he has always known what is going to happen, and all he does is watch, what's the point? What does he do? Sit up there in heaven and ask himself "Hey, I wonder if I was right. Is Alex Smith really going to get hit by a drunk driver at 2:33 A.M. On his way home from his second job that he has to work because his wife is having a difficult pregnancy and is stuck in the hospital, flat on her back, for the next month, without the family having health insurance? Gee, I sure hope I foresaw what I caused accurately. If the dude doesn't die I'm a terrible prognosticator."

Fifteen minutes later: "Yep, he's dead. I called it. Now, lets see if four year old Lucy really gets diagnosed with cancer in the morning!"

If there is a god, he can't love us if he doesn't care about the misery his inadequate background information and culturally specific favoritism provokes. If there is a god, his only reason for letting millions die while fighting over him and other, alleged gods, would be for the entertainment. If there is a god allowing ISIS to rape all the women and behead all the foreigners, allowing North Korean prison camps, allowing "witches" to be burned in his name in Kenya, allowing the rich to control so much of the planet and so much of our resources, then his worth is so minimal that we should all be ashamed of him. All but the most evil and belligerent of humans have higher morals than the deity who claims perfection. Most animals have higher standards, most rocks more heart.

Christians are always claiming a high ground that doesn't exist. "We have incredibly high moral standards which, of course, we can't live up to, but the moral standards we can't live up to are superior the moral standards you can't live up to, so you should do it our way!" That's too long for a slogan, too empty to be a lesson, and too stupid to be smart. Yet it attracts millions. Weird.

Humans will never solve their problems until all of us can sit down and say to ourselves "Crap, are we stupid or what?" And gods have to be removed fro all the equations because right now, every effort to include them in the formula means that we're multiplying by zero and, if you were't home schooled, you know what that means.

The catholics think they are hot sh*t, the mormons think they are the top dog, the JW's think they've got it figured out, and none of them see the common thread, that of excuse after excuse, running through each of their stories.

Luk is unlikely to say "Oh, I get it. ALL religions are wrong!" Because he has been taught otherwise by people who have nothing to teach. The gullible find it easy to get A's when the lessons have no content. They all end up graduating Summa Cum Stupid, and bragging about it for all of eternity, or until the die, whichever comes first.
Not everyone is entitled to their own opinion. They're all entitled to mine though.

Offline eh!

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1309
  • Darwins +46/-30
  • Gender: Male
  • jimmy hendrix is jesus
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1617 on: September 16, 2014, 12:27:10 AM »
"Christians are always claiming a high ground that doesn't exist. "We have incredibly high moral standards which, of course, we can't live up to, but the moral standards we can't live up to are superior the moral standards you can't live up to, so you should do it our way!" That's too long for a slogan, too empty to be a lesson, and too stupid to be smart. Yet it attracts millions. Weird."

printed and filed, will be distributed.
Signature goes here...

Online jaimehlers

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 4844
  • Darwins +557/-17
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1618 on: September 16, 2014, 10:14:34 AM »
You are right. A kids life is priceless. Nevertheless you have to be fair and recognize that there is more good done by the church than bad. If you don't, you are lying to yourself just so you can feel good about bitching against them.
No, she isn't lying to herself.  This isn't some kind of ledger, where you balance good against evil, and if G > E, then the person is good, and if E > G, the person is evil.  Good actions do not balance evil ones, because evil actions have a weight all out of proportion with what they actually are.  Have you ever heard a saying like, "one bad review will wipe out a dozen good ones"?  A priest who sexually abused even one child would wipe out a large number of children fed and housed by the same church, reputation-wise, because people notice bad things far more than they notice good ones.

I will not deny that churches in general are responsible for many positive things in the world; but the objective needs to be more than doing good things.  You also have to minimize bad things as much as possible, or else the good things you do will tend to be forgotten or ignored.  That is NGFM's point.  The mere fact that there have been thousands of sexual abuse scandals involving priests is what will fix itself in people's minds, not the various shelters and food banks and whatnot that your church runs.  Not even if far more children are helped by the latter than are harmed by the former.

Quote from: Lukvance
You know first hand that many Hospitals couldn't even survive without the help of the church, right?
Probably true in some cases, but frankly, not relevant, because many hospitals are supported by government funds, and many others are supported by donations, fund drives, or other non-religious charitable means.  If "the church" vanished tomorrow, it would not be the end of the world for hospitals.

Quote from: Lukvance
Should they stop helping because anyway no one is recognizing the good work they do and they all underline the bad things that is happening?
Of course not, but that is not the point.  It is not enough for an organization to do good things; they need to work hard to prevent people under their umbrella from doing bad things as well.  If you'll excuse a crude analogy, it's like how it is so much harder to clean up excrement than to keep it from making the mess to begin with, and how it is much easier if you can stay on top of it rather than letting it become a stinky festering mess.

Offline Lukvance

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1931
  • Darwins +13/-257
  • Gender: Male
  • Catholic
  • User posts join approval queueModerated
Re: Probabilities of God's existence debate
« Reply #1619 on: September 16, 2014, 11:56:13 AM »
A god that can't even rein in its own followers is frightfully incompetent and untrustworthy.
Which one do you think is a better God? The one who restrain his followers so they cannot make mistakes and never learn from them or the one who let his followers with strict instruction but still love them even if they don't follow them?
Also, what kind of "rein in" do you have in mind? What is the example your desire is based on?
You're worth more than my time