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Thread: Atheism vs. Religion

  1. #1401

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Who do you mean by we? I don't accept that anything is eternal let alone as amorphous and vague a concept as "duty". What it is, is a useful societal construct. An idea that helps humans have a semblance of functional communities.
    Sorry "duty" was a typo. But duty works as well. The religions all make humans subservient to the rules, higher causes. Makes sense as constitutions do as well. Then there are penalties created to enforce the rules. Scientific agendas do as well. Global warming, now being redefined / hedged as climate change which has dominated the environmental discussion is pushing aside other near term scientifically based environmental threats. Redefining it as climate change has interesting society and self-sustaining effects as well. Humans just aren't very accepting of living with multiple versions of reality - they crave certainty and dominance of certain views and work to make those views self-perpetuating (spirit if you will).
    Last edited by KC; 28-05-2016 at 09:59 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by East McCauley View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Even if you don't believe in the Christian teaching of the afterlife, what makes you so absolutely sure that there is nothing beyond this physical life? Serious question.
    There is little if anything that any person can be absolutely sure of. Which is why absolute certainty is not an acceptable standard of proof for anything.

    Remaining open to the possibility that there is life after physical death (despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary) is not the same thing as believing there is an afterlife.
    My view is that science doesn't have a test yet for such questions where additionally, observation also fails. Similarly, where is the edge of the universe, is there an edge to the universe, what's beyond our current ability to detect? So if someone wants to create a belief system about what is currently beyond humanity's reasoned senses, well, what of it? It's as good/bad as anything else. Observations of closer physical conditions might lead us to speculate but we can't say reliably say that the evidence so far overwhelmingly points to this or that. That's flat earth thinking or thinking that the ocean house on forever and nothing sits over the known horizon.
    Since science is based on observation and testing of the physical and natural universe to constantly expand our knowledge and understanding, your view strikes me as nonsensical. What "test" could possibly be developed to determine whether there is an afterlife?

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Who do you mean by we? I don't accept that anything is eternal let alone as amorphous and vague a concept as "duty". What it is, is a useful societal construct. An idea that helps humans have a semblance of functional communities.
    Sorry "duty" was a typo. But duty works as well. The religions all make humans subservient to the rules, higher causes. Makes sense as constitutions do as well. Then there are penalties created to enforce the rules. Scientific agendas do as well. Global warming, now being redefined / hedged as climate change which has dominated the environmental discussion is pushing aside other near term scientifically based environmental threats. Redefining it as climate change has interesting society and self-sustaining effects as well. Humans just aren't very accepting of living with multiple versions of reality - they crave certainty and dominance of certain views and work to make those views self-perpetuating (spirit if you will).
    Functional societies do require rules and humans also require intellectual frameworks in which to function. The difference between religions and most of the rest is that the rest make no claim to infallibility, or at the very least are known to be human constructs. Religions are human constructs that make claims of infallibility and infallible origin. When their claims are at odds with reality, their followers may choose to ignore reality. That is more than problematic.

    Constitutions can be amended. Laws can be changed. Government's are based around these things. Built in is the idea that we are fallible and need to be constantly adjusting.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  4. #1404

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    Excellent pints!

    However I'd say religions are constantly adjusting as well. (Like the earth vs sun issue, or the black slaves issue I posted a few posts back.) Science and changing societal beliefs force change on the religions as well. They are market sensitive. Since religions often adopt a broad based belief system spanning a wide range of human issues they can pick and choose what factors they retain and which they abandon or downplay. Where used, omnipotent being references (like the word of God) in various religions can just persist until it needs changing and then somebody will step up and claim they are the son or daughter of God or that God spoke to them and provided a new set of rules to live by.

  5. #1405

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    Quote Originally Posted by East McCauley View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by East McCauley View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Even if you don't believe in the Christian teaching of the afterlife, what makes you so absolutely sure that there is nothing beyond this physical life? Serious question.
    There is little if anything that any person can be absolutely sure of. Which is why absolute certainty is not an acceptable standard of proof for anything.

    Remaining open to the possibility that there is life after physical death (despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary) is not the same thing as believing there is an afterlife.
    My view is that science doesn't have a test yet for such questions where additionally, observation also fails. Similarly, where is the edge of the universe, is there an edge to the universe, what's beyond our current ability to detect? So if someone wants to create a belief system about what is currently beyond humanity's reasoned senses, well, what of it? It's as good/bad as anything else. Observations of closer physical conditions might lead us to speculate but we can't say reliably say that the evidence so far overwhelmingly points to this or that. That's flat earth thinking or thinking that the ocean house on forever and nothing sits over the known horizon.
    Since science is based on observation and testing of the physical and natural universe to constantly expand our knowledge and understanding, your view strikes me as nonsensical. What "test" could possibly be developed to determine whether there is an afterlife?
    That was my point so why it nonsensical? As you said: "constantly". If 500 years ago someone dreamed up the idea of DNA carrying the coding of life what test at that time could possibly have been developed to determine whether there was DNA? What is beyond the 'realm' of science today may not be tomorrow. So to believe some hair brained view of the universe is false, or true, when we can't prove it one way or another is, just that, another belief. If we can't test for something then why take a hard position on it?

    So, is there something beyond this "physical life"? My answer: I don't know. And I think that's a well reasoned position for me to take.
    Last edited by KC; 28-05-2016 at 03:37 PM.

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    The test for whether there is an afterlife is whether or not our minds are independent of our brains. Given that physical changes to the brain can have large effects on personality and memory, that chemical changes in our brains can affect perception and thought, it is clear our minds are our brains.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  7. #1407

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    The test for whether there is an afterlife is whether or not our minds are independent of our brains. Given that physical changes to the brain can have large effects on personality and memory, that chemical changes in our brains can affect perception and thought, it is clear our minds are our brains.
    Agree. Souls though are presented as something else. Scientific questions as to the possibility of parallel universes, questions as to whether or not even time really exists, etc raise interesting issues regarding our own understanding of our sense of selves and the world around us (like suddenly seeing the world through different eyes picking up UV or radar or even gravity waves etc). My sense is that I didn't exist before I was born, and I may not exist before I even die and most likely (to definitely) not after I die. Dementia may intervene before my body dies.

    My belief is that my parents and several other loved ones no longer exist in any form that could be identified as them. Same for everyone and every other being that has ever lived. Wouldn't it be nice and comforting of deceased loved ones to think that 'they' in some sense are still out there. Religion, originating in far, far more tragic times, provided that comfort.

    (I've long wanted to start a thread on people close to us that we've lost and what that means to each person. As loved ones die, I think there's a profound impact on many people to strengthen unsupported, faith based beliefs to relieve their pain and suffering.)

    Now, assuming "now" exists, I know I do generate thoughts. What happens to those thoughts. Heat leaves must body and disperses. Same for other things radiating from me (like my wonderful personality ) While thoughts can be generated, while alive, can those thought travel?
    Last edited by KC; 28-05-2016 at 04:13 PM.

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    Tickets are now on sale for the Alberta Secular Conference.

    Speaker List: http://absecularconference.yolasite....t-speakers.php
    Tickets: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ab-secu...526721#tickets

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  9. #1409

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    The test for whether there is an afterlife is whether or not our minds are independent of our brains. Given that physical changes to the brain can have large effects on personality and memory, that chemical changes in our brains can affect perception and thought, it is clear our minds are our brains.
    Agree. Souls though are presented as something else. Scientific questions as to the possibility of parallel universes, questions as to whether or not even time really exists, etc raise interesting issues regarding our own understanding of our sense of selves and the world around us (like suddenly seeing the world through different eyes picking up UV or radar or even gravity waves etc). My sense is that I didn't exist before I was born, and I may not exist before I even die and most likely (to definitely) not after I die. Dementia may intervene before my body dies.

    My belief is that my parents and several other loved ones no longer exist in any form that could be identified as them. Same for everyone and every other being that has ever lived. Wouldn't it be nice and comforting of deceased loved ones to think that 'they' in some sense are still out there. Religion, originating in far, far more tragic times, provided that comfort.

    (I've long wanted to start a thread on people close to us that we've lost and what that means to each person. As loved ones die, I think there's a profound impact on many people to strengthen unsupported, faith based beliefs to relieve their pain and suffering.)

    Now, assuming "now" exists, I know I do generate thoughts. What happens to those thoughts. Heat leaves must body and disperses. Same for other things radiating from me (like my wonderful personality ) While thoughts can be generated, while alive, can those thought travel?
    Even the afterlife has generated it's own rip off artists in the way of mediums and psychics. There are (unfortunately) a vast number of people who believe the dead can converse with the living through some psychic channel. Of course there are all kinds of shysters ready to take advantage of peoples grief and to tell them (for a fee) that they can invoke the spirit of Uncle Doug through some kind of, well who knows, but it's bogus. These seance usually have no religious elements to them. You never hear of religious bodies even endorsing them and yet after life is a big part of a lot of faiths. They talk about life after death and yet they don't try to contact the dead or try to get money off them for their collection plates.
    "The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read." –Mark Twain

  10. #1410

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gemini View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    The test for whether there is an afterlife is whether or not our minds are independent of our brains. Given that physical changes to the brain can have large effects on personality and memory, that chemical changes in our brains can affect perception and thought, it is clear our minds are our brains.
    Agree. Souls though are presented as something else. Scientific questions as to the possibility of parallel universes, questions as to whether or not even time really exists, etc raise interesting issues regarding our own understanding of our sense of selves and the world around us (like suddenly seeing the world through different eyes picking up UV or radar or even gravity waves etc). My sense is that I didn't exist before I was born, and I may not exist before I even die and most likely (to definitely) not after I die. Dementia may intervene before my body dies.

    My belief is that my parents and several other loved ones no longer exist in any form that could be identified as them. Same for everyone and every other being that has ever lived. Wouldn't it be nice and comforting of deceased loved ones to think that 'they' in some sense are still out there. Religion, originating in far, far more tragic times, provided that comfort.

    (I've long wanted to start a thread on people close to us that we've lost and what that means to each person. As loved ones die, I think there's a profound impact on many people to strengthen unsupported, faith based beliefs to relieve their pain and suffering.)

    Now, assuming "now" exists, I know I do generate thoughts. What happens to those thoughts. Heat leaves must body and disperses. Same for other things radiating from me (like my wonderful personality ) While thoughts can be generated, while alive, can those thought travel?
    Even the afterlife has generated it's own rip off artists in the way of mediums and psychics. There are (unfortunately) a vast number of people who believe the dead can converse with the living through some psychic channel. Of course there are all kinds of shysters ready to take advantage of peoples grief and to tell them (for a fee) that they can invoke the spirit of Uncle Doug through some kind of, well who knows, but it's bogus. These seance usually have no religious elements to them. You never hear of religious bodies even endorsing them and yet after life is a big part of a lot of faiths. They talk about life after death and yet they don't try to contact the dead or try to get money off them for their collection plates.
    Well don't waste any money trying to get in touch with me. You'd probably find any conversations rather scatterbrained.

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    Default Were Humans Specially Created or Did They Evolve from a Hominid?

    A good summary of the case for creation rather than evolution presented by Reasons to Believe founder Hugh Ross in a recent blog of his...

    http://www.reasonsblogs.org/2016/07/...rom-a-hominid/

    "...From a biblical perspective there is a reason why we humans share so many features with the higher animals. Genesis and Job describe how God created nephesh (soulish) animals to relate to, serve, and please human beings. For relationships between these animals and humans to be possible and for these animals to serve and please humans they must share many features in common with humans. The Bible not only teaches that humans are exceptional compared to all other nephesh life, it also teaches that all nephesh life is exceptional compared to all non-nephesh life..."

  12. #1412

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    A good summary of the case for creation rather than evolution presented by Reasons to Believe founder Hugh Ross in a recent blog of his...
    It's a good summary case of religious flim flam.

    These 700 words are barely the tip of the iceberg of scientific evidence establishing that humans arise from special creation rather than evolutionary common descent.
    There is no scientific evidence whatsoever for any form of "creation." Unless, of course, one has failed to understand the concept of scientific evidence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post

    It's a good summary case of religious flim flam.

    There is no scientific evidence whatsoever for any form of "creation." Unless, of course, one has failed to understand the concept of scientific evidence.
    First off everyone is entitled to their opinion, why must you resort to disrespect of my opinion? Disagreement is welcomed and discussion is great but please keep the insults out of it. Secondly, why do you dismiss, out of hand, the creation model that he presents? Unless of course you have taken the time to research his model in full. If so I would be happy to discuss with you any points of disagreement. I think if you look seriously at his model you may be surprised by what it contains. He is not your typical "young earth" creationist, in fact he believes that the scientific dating for the age of the earth is correct.

  14. #1414

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    First off everyone is entitled to their opinion, why must you resort to disrespect of my opinion? Disagreement is welcomed and discussion is great but please keep the insults out of it. Secondly, why do you dismiss, out of hand, the creation model that he presents? Unless of course you have taken the time to research his model in full. If so I would be happy to discuss with you any points of disagreement. I think if you look seriously at his model you may be surprised by what it contains. He is not your typical "young earth" creationist, in fact he believes that the scientific dating for the age of the earth is correct.
    Firstly, I said nothing about your opinion. (It's unfortunate you feel offended.) I simply stated my opinion on yet another religion-focused burp of inanity.

    Secondly, the author, or yourself or anyone, should feel free to espouse any form of religious allegation. (I don't care what you call it, model or otherwise, it's not surprising.) The objection is simple: don't claim there is scientific evidence for "creation." There isn't. And, until there is, there is nothing further to discuss on that point of contention.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post

    Firstly, I said nothing about your opinion. (It's unfortunate you feel offended.) I simply stated my opinion on yet another religion-focused burp of inanity.
    Why then use the term religious "flim flam" in the first place? It doesn't add anything to your argument and is inflammatory/derogatory language as is "burp of inanity".

    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post

    The objection is simple: don't claim there is scientific evidence for "creation." There isn't. And, until there is, there is nothing further to discuss on that point of contention.
    Again I challenge you to read some of the material on the www.reasons.org website. I am not suggesting you go out an buy his books but take a look at some of his arguments before dismissing them outright. Here are a couple of articles that you might find interesting...

    http://www.reasons.org/articles/summ...creation-model


    http://www.reasons.org/articles/big-...aught-it-first

  16. #1416

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Why then use the term religious "flim flam" in the first place? It doesn't add anything to your argument and is inflammatory/derogatory language as is "burp of inanity".
    "Flim flam" fit my purpose precisely as did the latter phrase. Again, it's unfortunate you find it offensive.

    noun: flim-flam

    • 1. nonsensical or insincere talk.
      "I suppose that you suspect me of pseudointellectual flimflam"
    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Again I challenge you to read some of the material on the www.reasons.org website. I am not suggesting you go out an buy his books but take a look at some of his arguments before dismissing them outright. Here are a couple of articles that you might find interesting...
    I challenge you to understand the concept of scientific evidence. Until then, I suggest you're unable to successfully debate the issue at hand.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post

    "Flim flam" fit my purpose precisely as did the latter phrase. Again, it's unfortunate you find it offensive.

    noun: flim-flam

    • 1. nonsensical or insincere talk.
      "I suppose that you suspect me of pseudointellectual flimflam"
    Why wouldn't you think that I would find it offensive if you are dismissing the evidence that I perceive as valuable, as "nonsense" or "insincere" without even taking the time to review what evidence has been presented?


    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    I challenge you to understand the concept of scientific evidence. Until then, I suggest you're unable to successfully debate the issue at hand.
    At least take a look at what has been presented as "evidence" and let me know where you think it falls short. Besides scientific evidence there is also many other types of evidence supporting the belief in a creator rather than natural design. I happen to come across this video from a former forensic investigator who also is a former atheist regarding different types of evidence that you might find interesting....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geuHSnrgn3Y

  18. #1418

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    Really? Okay.

    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Why wouldn't you think that I would find it offensive if you are dismissing the evidence that I perceive as valuable, as "nonsense" or "insincere" without even taking the time to review what evidence has been presented?
    Not sure why you would think I was speculating on what may or may not offend you. Regardless, I can't help that one might be offended by the disregard of unsupported "evidence." (No doubt your agenda would benefit from some scientifically-supportable findings.)

    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    At least take a look at what has been presented as "evidence" and let me know where you think it falls short. Besides scientific evidence there is also many other types of evidence supporting the belief in a creator rather than natural design. I happen to come across this video from a former forensic investigator who also is a former atheist regarding different types of evidence that you might find interesting....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geuHSnrgn3Y
    Yet you seemingly refuse to understand or acknowledge the import of scientific principles.

    Perhaps I haven't been clear. Since your presented "evidence" isn't scientific, it doesn't fall short, it's doesn't even start. If you'd like some rigour behind that statement, simply review the Kitzmiller trial of 2005. I suggest that would save you a great deal of wasted effort.

    And that shouldn't detract any fondness for your chosen religious doctrines and philosophies.

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    The trial being referred to, in which "Intelligent Design" was basically laughed out of the courtroom: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kitzmi...chool_District

    Progressive creationism, which is what Hugh Ross preaches, is pseudoscience of a similar ilk to Intelligent Design. It's a "god of the gaps" explanation/argument. And not a particularly good one. It has virtually no support in scientific theory or principles: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressive_creationism

    The overwhelming consensus of the scientific community is that creation science is a religious, not a scientific view. It fails to qualify as a science because it lacks empirical support, supplies no tentative hypotheses, and resolves to describe natural history in terms of scientifically untestable supernatural causes.[3][4] Creation science is a pseudoscientific attempt to map the Bible into scientific facts,[5][6][7] and is viewed by professional biologists as unscholarly[8] and, even, as a dishonest and misguided sham, with harmful educational consequences.[9]
    It's also worth noting that Ross is an astrophysicist. Not a biologist.
    Last edited by Marcel Petrin; 22-07-2016 at 03:31 PM.

  20. #1420

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    Come back when intelligent design, creationsm, etc. can pass even the most basic testing of any hypothesis. There is none. There has been no observable backing for any of their claims - only suppositions.

    sci·en·tif·ic meth·od
    noun

    • a method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.

    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  21. #1421

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    Considering the 'immoral' brutality history has seen among both religious and atheistic powers, maybe this somewhat explains the rationalizing that goes on.


    March 1941, Hitler issued what has come to be known as the ‘Commissar Order,’ which clearly spelled out the future nature of the war in Russia. The coming conflict was to be ‘one of ideologies and racial differences and will have to be waged with unprecedented, unmerciful, and unrelenting hardness.’ It also instructed Hitler’s subordinates to execute commissars and exonerated his soldiers of any future excess. ‘Any German soldier who breaks international law will be pardoned,’ the Führer stated. ‘Russia did not take part in the Hague Convention and, therefore, has no rights under it.’

    At a subsequent gathering to explain the application of this order to senior army officers, General Edwin Reinecke, the Reich officer responsible for the treatment of POWs, told his audience: ‘The war between Germany and Russia is not a war between two states or two armies, but between two ideologies — namely, the National Socialist and the Bolshevist ideology. The Red Army [soldier] must be looked upon not as a soldier in the sense of the word applying to our western opponents, but as an ideological enemy. He must be regarded as the archenemy of National Socialism and must be treated accordingly.’ ... Under the direction of the Commissar Order, immediately after capture all Soviet political officers should be killed and that thereafter, under a’special selection program of the SD [Sicherheitsdienst, the Nazi Party’s security service], all those prisoners who could be identified as thoroughly bolshevized or as active representatives of the Bolshevist ideology’ should also be killed.

    ...


    http://www.historynet.com/soviet-pri...rld-war-ii.htm


    I still think agnostism (rather than some kind of devout aethiesm or religious belief in God(s) is a reasonable position.
    Last edited by KC; 26-07-2016 at 05:41 PM.

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    Considering the 'immoral' brutality history has seen among both religious and atheistic powers


    That's generally a completely BS point of comparison. People will often pull out Mao, or Stalin, or Hitler (which is further BS because Hitler was a stated Christian) as supposed "Atheist dictators". But none of them were doing their awful deeds strictly in the name of atheism or their lack of belief in a higher power, unlike religious extremists. They were doing those awful things in the name of their political ideologies.

  23. #1423

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Considering the 'immoral' brutality history has seen among both religious and atheistic powers


    That's generally a completely BS point of comparison. People will often pull out Mao, or Stalin, or Hitler (which is further BS because Hitler was a stated Christian) as supposed "Atheist dictators". But none of them were doing their awful deeds strictly in the name of atheism or their lack of belief in a higher power, unlike religious extremists. They were doing those awful things in the name of their political ideologies.
    Good point. Though, is state aethiesm a religion, an ideology or something else?


    Jesus, wikipedia even has a topic page called "State aethiesm"



    ...
    Lenin stated:

    Religion is the opiate of the people: this saying of Marx is the cornerstone of the entire ideology of Marxism about religion. All modern religions and churches, all and of every kind of religious organizations are always considered by Marxism as the organs of bourgeois reaction, used for the protection of the exploitation and the stupefaction of the working class.[10]

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_atheism
    Last edited by KC; 26-07-2016 at 05:50 PM.

  24. #1424

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    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  25. #1425

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    Agnostics! At 3 minute mark. Hilarious. Love it!!!
    Last edited by KC; 26-07-2016 at 05:59 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Considering the 'immoral' brutality history has seen among both religious and atheistic powers


    That's generally a completely BS point of comparison. People will often pull out Mao, or Stalin, or Hitler (which is further BS because Hitler was a stated Christian) as supposed "Atheist dictators". But none of them were doing their awful deeds strictly in the name of atheism or their lack of belief in a higher power, unlike religious extremists. They were doing those awful things in the name of their political ideologies.
    It should be noted though that atheism was a key tenet of Mao's and Stalin's communist ideology (a la Marx: "religion is an opiate of the people"). As per Chmilz's Jim Jeffries video clip, it looks like Mao and Stalin saw themselves as being located in the engine of the train and actually followed through with pulling the pin on those riding in the caboose.

    As for Hitler, it is true that he did refer to God and Jesus and quoted the Bible in many of his speeches and writings. The system of belief that he adhered to was actually pseudo-Christian, developed in the mid-19th century by German nationalist extremists and called "Positive Christianity". Positive Christianity attempted to fuse together German nationalism with Christian faith for political purposes. In so doing it rejected 75% of the Bible as being too Jewish, and viewed Jesus as an Aryan, a member of the Nazi master race. The original teachings of Christianity were so radically altered (some would say "perverted") by these folks that what was left over bore little if any resemblance to the original.

    Marcel, back to your point, if we need to give atheism a free pass because the actions of Mao and Stalin were done in the name of political ideology, then we need to do same with Christianity when it comes to Hitler.

  27. #1427

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    Nutcase dictators will use whatever tool they can in order to rule the masses.

    History proves that either using a religion as a "rule book", or forcibly forbidding people's religions, are both useful methods for keeping people oppressed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doppelganger
    Marcel, back to your point, if we need to give atheism a free pass because the actions of Mao and Stalin were done in the name of political ideology, then we need to do same with Christianity when it comes to Hitler.


    Tradsies accepted.

  29. #1429

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    The vast majority of any religion's followers likely firmly believe their positions, that their religion is the "correct" belief to adhere to, and so, followers of every other religion are essentially wrong.

    Atheists too believe their position is the correct and irrefutable one. (The scientific evidence we have so far confirms that belief or conclusion.) So, as with every religious follower they too feel, or 'know', that they are correct and everyone else is wrong.

    Now, agnostics, they are the type of people that would come up with freedom of religion and conscience and I bet the idea of tolerance. Holistically, they are the realists.


    They may want peace, but that peace attained through total dominance by their particular belief. Seems to me that most religious writings have positions permitting killing.

    Note the timing here. Is it a coincidence, that he said the war word (an escalation) immediately after the killing of a priest?


    Pope Francis warns world 'is at war' after Europe attacks - BBC News


    "The word we hear a lot is insecurity, but the real word is war," the pontiff said.

    "We must not be afraid to say the truth, the world is at war because it has lost peace.

    "When I speak of war I speak of wars over interests, money, resources, not religion. All religions want peace, it's the others who want war," Pope Francis added.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-36902882


    Last edited by KC; 27-07-2016 at 01:07 PM.

  30. #1430

    Default

    The Pope's an *****. Radical Islam is at war over religion and has no desire for peace, only cleansing of the unbelievers in the name of their god.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  31. #1431

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    ...
    Atheists too believe their position is the correct and irrefutable one. (The scientific evidence we have so far confirms that belief or conclusion.) So, as with every religious follower they too feel, or 'know', that they are correct and everyone else is wrong.

    Now, agnostics, they are the type of people that would come up with freedom of religion and conscience and I bet the idea of tolerance. Holistically, they are the realists.
    ...
    That is fundamentally inaccurate. Scientific evidence does NOT confirm atheism as a belief or conclusion. There simply is no scientific evidence of the supernatural. That is not a belief, it is a basic fact. Yet that fact does not preclude that we may some day find evidence of human-espoused gods, however ridiculously unlikely that may be. Neither can agnosticism in any way be solely linked to freedom of religion, conscience and tolerance.

  32. #1432

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Atheists too believe their position is the correct and irrefutable one.
    No. I am an atheist because it seems obvious to me that all religions and concepts of god/gods were invented by people.

  33. #1433

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    Quote Originally Posted by MrOilers View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Atheists too believe their position is the correct and irrefutable one.
    No. I am an atheist because it seems obvious to me that all religions and concepts of god/gods were invented by people.
    And that's why I prefer agnostism (fence sitting).

    As Spill I believe corrected me above, the current scientific evidence to date would support a position of aethiesm but doesn't "confirm" aethiesm.

    My fear of aethiesm is that it too can become a belief based on faith.

    On my view of freedoms and tolerance by agnostics, I absolute don't believe agnostics are responsible for the creation of religious freedoms. That can very likely be ascribed to religious people seeking a survivable and controllable compromise condition for constitutions. Agnostics though seem to be a better 'fit' between the interacting world's between non-believers and various waring believers. That's why being in the second car makes sense. . Agnostics are the people in the middle telling each group to stop fighting each other and go back to working on the respective cases: "go back, work on it some more. Have faith, you'll prove your case..."
    Last edited by KC; 27-07-2016 at 04:18 PM.

  34. #1434

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    People really think about this too much.

  35. #1435
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    ^I don't think so

  36. #1436
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    Quote Originally Posted by KC
    As Spill I believe corrected me above, the current scientific evidence to date would support a position of aethiesm but doesn't "confirm" aethiesm.


    By definition, science can never "confirm" the lack of gods or the supernatural.

  37. #1437

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC
    As Spill I believe corrected me above, the current scientific evidence to date would support a position of aethiesm but doesn't "confirm" aethiesm.


    By definition, science can never "confirm" the lack of gods or the supernatural.
    Then why should people take the position that there is no God(s) as I think, maybe mistakenly, that atheists are taking? Shouldn't any position be qualified or judgement withheld? Without a confirmation, isn't the agnostic's position more in alignment with the scientific method - at this point in exploration.

    Though, the definitions aren't mutually exclusive:

    agnostic

    A person who believes that nothing is known or can be known of the existence or nature of God.

    atheist

    A person who disbelieves or lacks belief in the existence of God or gods: he is a committed atheist. Most agnostics are closer in beliefs to atheists than to theists.

    http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/de...glish/agnostic

    Last edited by KC; 28-07-2016 at 11:09 AM.

  38. #1438

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    Quote Originally Posted by MrOilers View Post
    People really think about this too much.
    Most people really don't think at all. If they did, religion would die off at a much quicker rate.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  39. #1439

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Then why should people take the position that there is no God(s) as I think, maybe mistakenly, that atheists are taking?
    I don't think "should" enters into it. But with centuries of consideration resulting in no scientific evidence whatsoever for any of the myriad of religions past and present, why shouldn't such a position be taken?

    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Shouldn't any position be qualified or judgement withheld? Without a confirmation, isn't the agnostic's position more in alignment with the scientific method - at this point in exploration.
    An atheistic position is inherently qualified as "there is no evidence," though generally entwined with concluding the absurdity of religion as a concept. I suggest the ranks of atheists would diminish to virtually nothing with any shred of scientific evidence of a deity.

    Suggesting agnosticism aligns with the scientific method is far-fetched given that the scientific method is an active process. In other words, state a hypothesis for the existence of a particular religion and/or deity, then predict and test away. In the meantime it is unreasonable (to an atheist, at least) to consider that anything and everything is within the realm of the possible when waiting for unprovable non-existence. So sayeth the FSM.

  40. #1440

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    ^The existence of a God is not falsifable. Accordingly, suggesting it as possible, is not science.


    What is Falsifiability?

    In its basic form, falsifiability is the belief that for any hypothesis to have credence, it must be inherently disprovable before it can become accepted as a scientific hypothesis or theory.

    For example, if a scientist asks, "Does God exist?" then this can never be science because it is a theory that cannot be disproved.

    The idea is that no theory is completely correct, but if not falsified, it can be accepted as truth.

    For example, Newton's Theory of Gravity was accepted as truth for centuries, because objects do not randomly float away from the earth. It appeared to fit the figures obtained by experimentation and research, but was always subject to testing.

    However, Einstein's theory makes falsifiable predictions that are different from predictions made by Newton's theory, for example concerning the precession of the orbit of Mercury, and gravitational lensing of light. In non-extreme situations Einstein's and Newton's theories make the same predictions, so they are both correct. But Einstein's theory holds true in a superset of the conditions in which Newton's theory holds, so according to the principle of Occam's Razor, Einstein's theory is preferred. On the other hand, Newtonian calculations are simpler, so Newton's theory is useful for almost any engineering project, including some space projects. But for GPS we need Einstein's theory.
    There is no testing that a religion would agree to that would disprove God, because god does miracles that can explain anything. Religion is faith, not science.

    https://explorable.com/falsifiability
    Last edited by moahunter; 28-07-2016 at 01:46 PM.

  41. #1441

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    Care to read this?

    Neither intelligence nor education can stop you from forming prejudiced opinions – but an inquisitive attitude may help you make wiser judgements


    There is now a mountain of evidence to show that politics doesn’t just help predict people’s views on some scientific issues; it also affects how they interpret new information. This is why it is a mistake to think that you can somehow ‘correct’ people’s views on an issue by giving them more facts, since study after study has shown that people have a tendency to selectively reject facts that don’t fit with their existing views.

    ...


    But smarter people shouldn’t be susceptible to prejudice swaying their opinions, right? Wrong. Other research shows that people with the most education, highest mathematical abilities, and the strongest tendencies to be reflective about their beliefs are the most likely to resist information which should contradict their prejudices. This undermines the simplistic assumption that prejudices are the result of too much gut instinct and not enough deep thought. Rather, people who have the facility for deeper thought about an issue can use those cognitive powers to justify what they already believe and find reasons to dismiss apparently contrary evidence.
    ...
    So much for scientific background, but scientific curiosity showed a different pattern. ...

    http://www.bbc.com/future/story/2016...mind-from-bias
    Last edited by KC; 09-09-2016 at 07:35 PM.

  42. #1442

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    Quote Originally Posted by moahunter View Post
    ^The existence of a God is not falsifable. Accordingly, suggesting it as possible, is not science.


    What is Falsifiability?

    In its basic form, falsifiability is the belief that for any hypothesis to have credence, it must be inherently disprovable before it can become accepted as a scientific hypothesis or theory.

    For example, if a scientist asks, "Does God exist?" then this can never be science because it is a theory that cannot be disproved.

    The idea is that no theory is completely correct, but if not falsified, it can be accepted as truth.

    For example, Newton's Theory of Gravity was accepted as truth for centuries, because objects do not randomly float away from the earth. It appeared to fit the figures obtained by experimentation and research, but was always subject to testing.

    However, Einstein's theory makes falsifiable predictions that are different from predictions made by Newton's theory, for example concerning the precession of the orbit of Mercury, and gravitational lensing of light. In non-extreme situations Einstein's and Newton's theories make the same predictions, so they are both correct. But Einstein's theory holds true in a superset of the conditions in which Newton's theory holds, so according to the principle of Occam's Razor, Einstein's theory is preferred. On the other hand, Newtonian calculations are simpler, so Newton's theory is useful for almost any engineering project, including some space projects. But for GPS we need Einstein's theory.
    There is no testing that a religion would agree to that would disprove God, because god does miracles that can explain anything. Religion is faith, not science.

    https://explorable.com/falsifiability
    Who cares if religions agree?

  43. #1443
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    Three weeks until the Alberta Secular Conference!

    https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ab-secu...ts-24613526721

    Alberta's Secular Conference will be held in Edmonton on October 15th and 16th, 2016. The event will be hosted by Nathan Phelps (Ex-Westboro Baptist Church) and Karen Kerr (President of Society of Edmonton Atheists).

    Speakers of different faith backgrounds present during "Secular Saturday" dealing with issues that affect all Albertans.
    9am start
    Luke Fevin - religion in education
    Bradley Peter - physician assisted dying legislation
    Brook Biggin - LGBTTQ+ Panel
    Marni Panas - LGBTTQ+ Panel
    Cami Ryan - GMO's


    Sunday is more focused on the atheist and skeptic community.
    10am start
    Jim Linville
    Lynne Honey
    Raihan Abir - Bangladeshi blogger who fled to Canada
    Vyckie Garrison - No Longer Quivering blog
    Hemant Metha - The Friendly Atheist
    http://absecularconference.yolasite....t-speakers.php

    Many great speakers. I can personally vouch Dr. Lynne Honey does amazing talks!*



    *Full Disclosure: I don't want to sleep on the couch.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  44. #1444

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    Looks really interesting, though I don't understand what GMO's have to do with secularism. The rest are directly affected by religion, but GMO's are not.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  45. #1445
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    The skeptic and atheist groups have a lot of the same people in them and there is some cross pollination of the speakers. I know at Imagine No Religion there have been several strictly science or medicine based speakers and at the The Amazing Meeting there were some speakers on religion.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  46. #1446

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    Looks really interesting, though I don't understand what GMO's have to do with secularism. The rest are directly affected by religion, but GMO's are not.
    Its basically the same thing. You either believe in science / technology, or you believe in nonsense / pseudoscience / religion. Anti GMO's, anti vaccines, etc., is anti science, its pseudoscience / faith.

  47. #1447

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    Well, it's my own fault for immediately assuming that Cami was an anti-GMO whackjob. She's there supporting GMO research with facts and science. My apologies.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  48. #1448

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    "The Most Intolerant Wins" "The One-Way Street of Religions" (see below)


    Some teaser quotes from the article by Nassim Taleb. Please read it to make sense of the quotes:



    The Most Intolerant Wins: The Dictatorship of the Small Minority
    How Europe will eat Halal — Why you don’t have to smoke in the smoking section — Your food choices on the fall of the Saudi king –How to prevent a friend from working too hard –Omar Sharif ‘s conversion — How to make a market collapse

    ...
    So the same illusion exists in political discussions, spread by the political “scientists”: you think that because some extreme right or left wing party has, say, the support of ten percent of the population that their candidate would get ten percent of the votes. No: ...
    ...

    The One-Way Street of Religions

    In the same manner, the spread of Islam in the Near East where Christianity was heavily entrenched (it was born there) can be attributed to two simple asymmetries. The original Islamic rulers weren’t particularly interested in converting Christians as these provided them with tax revenues –the proselytism of Islam did not address those called “people of the book”, i.e. individuals of Abrahamic faith. In fact, my ancestors who survived thirteen centuries under Muslim rule saw advantages in not being Muslim: mostly in the avoidance of military conscription.

    The two asymmetric rules were are as follows. First, ...


    Clearly can democracy –by definition the majority — tolerate enemies? The question is as follows: “ Would you agree to deny the freedom of speech to every political party that has in its charter the banning the freedom of speech?” Let’s go one step further, “Should a society that has elected to be tolerant be intolerant about intolerance?”

    This is in fact the incoherence that Kurt Gödel (the grandmaster of logical rigor) detected in the constitution while taking the naturalization exam. Legend has it that Gödel started arguing with the judge and Einstein, who was his witness during the process, saved him.

    I wrote about people with logical flaws asking me if one should be “skeptical about skepticism”; I used a similar answer as Popper when was asked if “ one could falsify falsification”.

    We can answer these points using the minority rule. Yes, an intolerant minority can control and destroy democracy. Actually, as we saw, it will eventually destroy our world.

    So, we need to be more than intolerant with some intolerant minorities. It is not permissible to use “American values” or “Western principles” in treating intolerant Salafism (which denies other peoples’ right to have their own religion). The West is currently in the process of committing suicide.
    ..."

    Nassim Taleb
    Last edited by KC; 28-09-2016 at 01:03 PM.

  49. #1449
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Three weeks until the Alberta Secular Conference!

    https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ab-secu...ts-24613526721

    Alberta's Secular Conference will be held in Edmonton on October 15th and 16th, 2016. The event will be hosted by Nathan Phelps (Ex-Westboro Baptist Church) and Karen Kerr (President of Society of Edmonton Atheists).

    Speakers of different faith backgrounds present during "Secular Saturday" dealing with issues that affect all Albertans.
    9am start
    Luke Fevin - religion in education
    Bradley Peter - physician assisted dying legislation
    Brook Biggin - LGBTTQ+ Panel
    Marni Panas - LGBTTQ+ Panel
    Cami Ryan - GMO's


    Sunday is more focused on the atheist and skeptic community.
    10am start
    Jim Linville
    Lynne Honey
    Raihan Abir - Bangladeshi blogger who fled to Canada
    Vyckie Garrison - No Longer Quivering blog
    Hemant Metha - The Friendly Atheist
    http://absecularconference.yolasite....t-speakers.php
    Stephen Carter was added to the lineup today:

    The National Post, CBC and other political commentators have described Stephen Carter as a “political mastermind.”

    He led Alison Redford’s successful race for the Progressive Conservative Association leadership bid in Alberta, as well as her campaign for premier of the province. Stephen also served as Chief of Staff to the Premier for 6 months.
    He was the political strategist in Naheed Nenshi’s successful 2010 campaign for mayor of Calgary. His roots in politics include serving as media liaison and strategies to Joe Clark.
    Stephen is also a highly regarded political pundit who appears regularly on CBC and other networks; and recently he has received accolades for the irreverent podcast, The Strategists, which is regularly one of the top news and political podcasts in Canada. - Stephen will be talking to the issue of "Secular and religious impact on politics"

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  50. #1450

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Atheism and agnosticism are not exclusive, one is about what you believe and the other is about what you know. There are also matters of plausibility and probability. Technically the only thing anyone can be absolutely sure of is their own existence but the balance of probability is the world is as we experience it. The same holds true for atheism, I can not prove their are no deities but their existence seems implausible and improbable.
    Yes that's how I feel, except for your last comment. The vastness of the universe with our minimal comprehension of it, causes me to think that terms like implausible and improbable may not apply on a scientific basis, and are very prematurely applied, but can only be inferred on the basis of what minuscule amount of information we have to go on right now.


    100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars! So how many planets and how much history of intelligent life?


    ...and you have to wonder if we, in thinking that there is only one universe, may be like flat earth believers of the past....








    "Kornreich used a very rough estimate of 10 trillion galaxies in the universe. Multiplying that by the Milky

    Way's estimated 100 billion stars results in a large number indeed: 100 octillion stars, or

    100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars, or a "1" with 29 zeros after it. Kornreich emphasized that

    number is likely a gross underestimation, as more detailed looks at the universe will show even more

    galaxies."










    http://www.space.com/26078-how-many-...are-there.html
    The universe may contain 10 times as many galaxies as previously believed
    More than 90% of the galaxies in existence have yet to be studied, Hubble Space Telescope data suggests
    CBC News Posted: Oct 13, 2016 4:00 PM ET Last Updated: Oct 13, 2016 4:00 PM ET

    Excerpt:
    "Using Hubble Deep Field images, astronomers predicted the observable universe — that which is observable from Earth — contains between 100 billion to 200 billion galaxies.

    Turns out they may have been off — way off.

    ..."



    http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/ga...bble-1.3803385

  51. #1451

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    However, we now know that the Grinch IS real.


    How Would Evangelicals Respond if Atheists Acted Like David Grisham?
    Bruce Gerencser December 14, 2016

    excerpt:

    "Recently, David Grisham, an Evangelical preacher affiliated with Repent Amarillo and Last Frontier Evangelism, went to the Westgate Mall in Amarillo so he could let children standing in line to see Santa Claus know that Santa is a myth and Jesus is not. Here’s a video of Grisham’s verbal assault:.."


    https://brucegerencser.net/tag/last-...er-evangelism/


    I can't attest to the accuracy of this but it's interesting:
    (bolding is mine)

    I. When was Jesus born?

    A. Popular myth puts his birth on December 25th in the year 1 C.E.

    B. The New Testament gives no date or year for Jesus’ birth. The earliest gospel – St. Mark’s, written about 65 CE – begins with the baptism of an adult Jesus. This suggests that the earliest Christians lacked interest in or knowledge of Jesus’ birthdate.

    C. The year of Jesus birth was determined by Dionysius Exiguus, a Scythian monk, “abbot of a Roman monastery. His calculation went as follows:

    a. In the Roman, pre-Christian era, years were counted from ab urbe condita (“the founding of the City” [Rome]). Thus 1 AUC signifies the year Rome was founded, 5 AUC signifies the 5th year of Rome’s reign, etc.

    b. Dionysius received a tradition that the Roman emperor Augustus reigned 43 years, and was followed by the emperor Tiberius.

    c. Luke 3:1,23 indicates that when Jesus turned 30 years old, it was the 15th year of Tiberius reign.

    d. If Jesus was 30 years old in Tiberius’ reign, then he lived 15 years under Augustus (placing Jesus birth in Augustus’ 28th year of reign).

    e. Augustus took power in 727 AUC. Therefore, Dionysius put Jesus birth in 754 AUC.

    f. However, Luke 1:5 places Jesus’ birth in the days of Herod, and Herod died in 750 AUC – four years before the year in which Dionysius places Jesus birth.

    D. Joseph A. Fitzmyer – Professor Emeritus of Biblical Studies at the Catholic University of America, member of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, and former president of the Catholic Biblical Association – writing in the Catholic Church’s official commentary on the New Testament[1], writes about the date of Jesus’ birth, “Though the year [of Jesus birth is not reckoned with certainty, the birth did not occur in AD 1. The Christian era, supposed to have its starting point in the year of Jesus birth, is based on a miscalculation introduced ca. 533 by Dionysius Exiguus.”

    E. The DePascha Computus, an anonymous document believed to have been written in North Africa around 243 CE, placed Jesus birth on March 28. Clement, a bishop of Alexandria (d. ca. 215 CE), thought Jesus was born on November 18. Based on historical records, Fitzmyer guesses that Jesus birth occurred on September 11, 3 BCE.



    II. How Did Christmas Come to Be Celebrated on December 25?
    ...

    D. The problem was that there was nothing intrinsically Christian about Saturnalia. To remedy this, these Christian leaders named Saturnalia’s concluding day, December 25th, to be Jesus’ birthday.
    ...

    http://www.simpletoremember.com/vita...eRealStory.htm
    Last edited by KC; 14-12-2016 at 09:50 AM.

  52. #1452
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    ^Not sure exactly what points you are trying to make with posting the above? I am going to hazard a guess that the vast majority of evangelical Christians in Canada and the US would strongly disagree with David Grisham's so called method of evangelism. Regarding not knowing the exact date of Jesus' birth, I don't think that was important for the first of his followers nor for the majority of his followers today myself included. Virtually all modern historians agree that Jesus existed, and regard his baptism and his crucifixion as historical events, and assume that approximate ranges for these events can be estimated.

  53. #1453
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    I can not prove their are no deities but their existence seems implausible and improbable.
    What leads you to believe that the existence of a deity or deities seems implausible and improbable?

  54. #1454

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    ^ I'm pretty sure it is, as was previously discussed, due to a complete and utter lack of evidence for the existence of any deity (or otherwise supernatural presence). Please keep in mind that what qualifies as "evidence" is not nearly as subjective as some might hope, irrespective of what one chooses to base their beliefs upon.

  55. #1455

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    ^ I'm pretty sure it is, as was previously discussed, due to a complete and utter lack of evidence for the existence of any deity (or otherwise supernatural presence). Please keep in mind that what qualifies as "evidence" is not nearly as subjective as some might hope, irrespective of what one chooses to base their beliefs upon.
    Are you trying to tell me that Santa, the most generous, good natured, kind hearted of all dieties - doesn't really exist?

  56. #1456

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    ^Not sure exactly what points you are trying to make with posting the above? I am going to hazard a guess that the vast majority of evangelical Christians in Canada and the US would strongly disagree with David Grisham's so called method of evangelism. Regarding not knowing the exact date of Jesus' birth, I don't think that was important for the first of his followers nor for the majority of his followers today myself included. Virtually all modern historians agree that Jesus existed, and regard his baptism and his crucifixion as historical events, and assume that approximate ranges for these events can be estimated.
    I'm thinking that Christmas as a festivity has a longer history than Christmas itself, so parents, kids and Santa have as much right to be festive in their own way, today, as do guys like Grisham.

  57. #1457

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    I can not prove their are no deities but their existence seems implausible and improbable.
    What leads you to believe that the existence of a deity or deities seems implausible and improbable?
    My guess: the lack of 'proof'.

    Me, I'm reserving judgement - probably until the day I die, if not the day after.

    The validity of religions though, are another matter entirely.

  58. #1458

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    "I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."
    ...Stephen F Roberts
    Words I live by.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  59. #1459

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    "I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."
    ...Stephen F Roberts
    Words I live by.
    Why?

  60. #1460

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    That may have been a bit hyperbolic, I don't "live" by them, but it's a very accurate quote. I do run into evangelicals once in a while and this is a good way to end a conversation that won't go anywhere.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  61. #1461

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Are you trying to tell me that Santa, the most generous, good natured, kind hearted of all dieties - doesn't really exist?
    I know, right?

    Coincidentally enough, it was that exact early self-discovered obviousness upon which I built a healthy skepticism for the absurd.

    I got yer talking snake right here ...

  62. #1462
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    That may have been a bit hyperbolic, I don't "live" by them, but it's a very accurate quote. I do run into evangelicals once in a while and this is a good way to end a conversation that won't go anywhere.
    As far as I know, the New Testament is the only holy book of a major religion that claims Jesus as the resurrected son of God and one distinct part of the triune nature of God along with the God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. If one believes that the events recorded therein about Jesus are accurate, it really doesn't leave any room for belief in anything else such as Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism. Many religions accept Jesus as a prophet of God but only Christianity claims him as the only son of God, as he himself claimed, and why the Jews wanted him crucified. We can get into why I consider the New Testament and Old Testament as authentic but I'll throw it back to you and ask you why you don't think that they are.

  63. #1463
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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    I can not prove their are no deities but their existence seems implausible and improbable.
    What leads you to believe that the existence of a deity or deities seems implausible and improbable?
    Nothing we have observed requires the existence of a deity or even suggests the existence of deity.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    ^ I'm pretty sure it is, as was previously discussed, due to a complete and utter lack of evidence for the existence of any deity (or otherwise supernatural presence). Please keep in mind that what qualifies as "evidence" is not nearly as subjective as some might hope, irrespective of what one chooses to base their beliefs upon.
    Are you trying to tell me that Santa, the most generous, good natured, kind hearted of all dieties - doesn't really exist?
    Discussing it this morning with the kids we decided that since the North Pole is under 14,000 feet of water Santa must be Aquaman.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post

    I'm thinking that Christmas as a festivity has a longer history than Christmas itself, so parents, kids and Santa have as much right to be festive in their own way, today, as do guys like Grisham.
    Couldn't agree more.

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    It's on your religion to prove their claims, not on us to disprove them. Right now you're the one lacking evidence in favour of a god, while that same lack of evidence backs up our belief there is none. All available evidence supports our theory that there is no god.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    ... We can get into why I consider the New Testament and Old Testament as authentic but I'll throw it back to you and ask you why you don't think that they are.
    That is the coward's way out.

    If you're not able to substantiate your beliefs with evidence, don't leave it upon others to point out the obvious in return.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post

    Nothing we have observed requires the existence of a deity or even suggests the existence of deity.
    Scientists observe the universe and its laws and realize that some causal agent operating outside of time and space put it all into place. Could that not at least suggest to you the existence of a deity (personal or impersonal)?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    That is the coward's way out.

    If you're not able to substantiate your beliefs with evidence, don't leave it upon others to point out the obvious in return.
    No its not. It's called asking what type of proof you consider valid. I have no idea what you or the other poster would consider valid proof so before I spend any time putting that together I want to know what type of proof you would accept?

  70. #1470

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post

    Nothing we have observed requires the existence of a deity or even suggests the existence of deity.
    Scientists observe the universe and its laws and realize that some causal agent operating outside of time and space put it all into place. Could that not at least suggest to you the existence of a deity (personal or impersonal)?
    OK, so you've made an observation and come up with a hypothesis. Now test for it and show us your results. You haven't even made it halfway through basic scientific method.



    Paraffin Paradox is a great little video that explains how rigorous the questions and formulation are before you even start testing. I'd argue your religion hasn't even made it that far in thousands of years with billions of followers. In fact, single people have blown your religion wide open by doing just this (Copernicus, Galileo, etc.)

    Last edited by Chmilz; 15-12-2016 at 01:34 PM.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    No its not. It's called asking what type of proof you consider valid. I have no idea what you or the other poster would consider valid proof so before I spend any time putting that together I want to know what type of proof you would accept?
    It most certainly is.

    You were repeatedly asked to consider the concept of scientific evidence. Short of that, I suggest you find evidence that could be upheld in a (contemporary) court of law (eg: Kitzmiller v. Dover). Take all the time you'd like. It has nothing to do with what *I* would accept, it entirely to do with that which is within the realm of substantiation, not personal belief or preference.

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post

    Nothing we have observed requires the existence of a deity or even suggests the existence of deity.
    Scientists observe the universe and its laws and realize that some causal agent operating outside of time and space put it all into place. Could that not at least suggest to you the existence of a deity (personal or impersonal)?
    Citation please. I'm not aware of any testable hypothesis out there right now that requires a causal agent outside of space and time. Argument from first cause is a philosophical argument rather than a scientific one. Some scientists believe it is necessary but in actual observation and testable theory it doesn't appear necessary. This particularly the case in current dominant cosmological theories as no "before" is necessary for the universe.

    All this, of course, leaves aside the problem, if a first cause is necessary, of what caused the first cause or does that cause have to be intelligent.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  73. #1473

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    You might want to change that to "peer-reviewed citation please", lest they pull out their magic infallible book, which is infallible because it says so & since it's infallible it must be true!
    Giving less of a damn than ever… Happily ignoring the ignorant rather than getting in a battle of wits with unarmed opponents.

  74. #1474

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    "I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."
    ...Stephen F Roberts
    Words I live by.
    Why?


    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    That may have been a bit hyperbolic, I don't "live" by them, but it's a very accurate quote. I do run into evangelicals once in a while and this is a good way to end a conversation that won't go anywhere.

    If someone found incontrovertible proof that say God existed and created the universe, I really don't know what difference it would make in my life.

    Why would I change anything one iota, except for my interest in the nature of that God and the universe?

  75. #1475

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post

    Nothing we have observed requires the existence of a deity or even suggests the existence of deity.
    Scientists observe the universe and its laws and realize that some causal agent operating outside of time and space put it all into place. Could that not at least suggest to you the existence of a deity (personal or impersonal)?
    Citation please. I'm not aware of any testable hypothesis out there right now that requires a causal agent outside of space and time. Argument from first cause is a philosophical argument rather than a scientific one. Some scientists believe it is necessary but in actual observation and testable theory it doesn't appear necessary. This particularly the case in current dominant cosmological theories as no "before" is necessary for the universe.

    All this, of course, leaves aside the problem, if a first cause is necessary, of what caused the first cause or does that cause have to be intelligent.
    It's actually a very interesting problem. Scientists all around the world must wonder about the existence of "God" so by now there shouldn't there be a well developed hypothesis? What is it?


    ok, I just needed to Google first (see below). However, much of what he says, is about what religions say God is capable of, and not of the possibility that God exists:


    Couldn't God, the supreme deity still exist, but be nothing at all like what various humans down through the ages in different parts of the world have reported as God's deeds and powers.
    (Imagine all kinds of characteristics were ascribed to dark matter beyond the initial theory/evidence that dark matter seems to exist. Whole cultures might be built around legends of these characteristics but the actual truth to dark matter may still be something 'substantially' beyond what we could conceive it to be.)

    The God Hypothesis
    03/20/2012

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/victor...b_1355321.html
    Last edited by KC; 15-12-2016 at 03:10 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC
    If someone found incontrovertible proof that say God existed and created the universe, I really don't know what difference it would make in my life.

    Why would I change anything one iota, except for my interest in the nature of that God and the universe?


    It would totally depend on the nature of that God. Is it the vengeful psychopath of the Old Testament who seemed to get his rocks off slaughtering innocent women and children, or at least directing his followers to do so? Or the somewhat nicer New Age New Testament hippy version who just wants you to love everyone? Or is it the Hindu pantheon? Allah? Depending on which god or gods were found to exist, it would absolutely impact how your life would or wouldn't change, if you suddenly had to adhere to whatever strict rules that particular god finds fashionable. Suddenly certain foods, whether it be beef or shellfish or whatever, might be off the menu. Perhaps certain garments would be banned or required, whether that be burkas or Mormon magic underpants.

    Likely, you're saying that it wouldn't change anything in your life, because you're making the incredibly presumptuous assumption that if there is undeniable proof found for the existence of a god, it'll be the God of Christianity. Because why would it be any other god, right? That's the One True God, all others be damned.

    You honestly don't think that if it was instead Allah or Vishnu or Odin that you wouldn't have to make significant changes to many aspects of your life to satisfy the pernicious desires of whatever alternate god it turns out to be?
    Last edited by Marcel Petrin; 15-12-2016 at 03:43 PM.

  77. #1477

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    If someone found incontrovertible proof that say God existed and created the universe, I really don't know what difference it would make in my life.

    Why would I change anything one iota, except for my interest in the nature of that God and the universe?
    Well, there is a tendency amongst man-made religions (i.e. all religions) of directives that include acknowledgement, reverence, worship, and a dismissal of all other religions. At least as prescribed by contemporary man-made, self-eggrandized, authoritative sources.

    I'd be quite content to acquiesce to a proven source of existence. Even one preferential to a sycophantic devotion.

  78. #1478

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    Well, there is a tendency amongst man-made religions (i.e. all religions) of directives that include acknowledgement, reverence, worship, and a dismissal of all other religions. At least as prescribed by contemporary man-made, self-eggrandized, authoritative sources.

    I'd be quite content to acquiesce to a proven source of existence. Even one preferential to a sycophantic devotion.
    Well, the Baha'i have a slightly different take on the relevancy of other religions.

    Three core principles establish a basis for Bahá'í teachings and doctrine: the unity of God, that there is only one God who is the source of all creation; the unity of religion, that all major religions have the same spiritual source and come from the same God; and the unity of humanity, that all humans have been created equal, coupled with the unity in diversity, that diversity of race and culture are seen as worthy of appreciation and acceptance.
    Giving less of a damn than ever… Happily ignoring the ignorant rather than getting in a battle of wits with unarmed opponents.

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    Quote Originally Posted by noodle View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    Well, there is a tendency amongst man-made religions (i.e. all religions) of directives that include acknowledgement, reverence, worship, and a dismissal of all other religions. At least as prescribed by contemporary man-made, self-eggrandized, authoritative sources.

    I'd be quite content to acquiesce to a proven source of existence. Even one preferential to a sycophantic devotion.
    Well, the Baha'i have a slightly different take on the relevancy of other religions.

    Three core principles establish a basis for Bahá'í teachings and doctrine: the unity of God, that there is only one God who is the source of all creation; the unity of religion, that all major religions have the same spiritual source and come from the same God; and the unity of humanity, that all humans have been created equal, coupled with the unity in diversity, that diversity of race and culture are seen as worthy of appreciation and acceptance.
    The Dalai Lama has expressed a similar view.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  80. #1480

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    ^
    ^^
    Correct. I said a tendency.

    Certainly amongst western believers.

  81. #1481

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC
    If someone found incontrovertible proof that say God existed and created the universe, I really don't know what difference it would make in my life.

    Why would I change anything one iota, except for my interest in the nature of that God and the universe?


    It would totally depend on the nature of that God. Is it the vengeful psychopath of the Old Testament who seemed to get his rocks off slaughtering innocent women and children, or at least directing his followers to do so? Or the somewhat nicer New Age New Testament hippy version who just wants you to love everyone? Or is it the Hindu pantheon? Allah? Depending on which god or gods were found to exist, it would absolutely impact how your life would or wouldn't change, if you suddenly had to adhere to whatever strict rules that particular god finds fashionable. Suddenly certain foods, whether it be beef or shellfish or whatever, might be off the menu. Perhaps certain garments would be banned or required, whether that be burkas or Mormon magic underpants.

    Likely, you're saying that it wouldn't change anything in your life, because you're making the incredibly presumptuous assumption that if there is undeniable proof found for the existence of a god, it'll be the God of Christianity. Because why would it be any other god, right? That's the One True God, all others be damned.

    You honestly don't think that if it was instead Allah or Vishnu or Odin that you wouldn't have to make significant changes to many aspects of your life to satisfy the pernicious desires of whatever alternate god it turns out to be?
    That's assuming that our discovery of such a God meant it then approached us. That our discovery meant something to it.

    Humans though have existed for thousands of years believing different things about God(s) and continue to do so today. Some scientific confirmation would only yield a bunch of I told you so's. Then the fighting would really begin as, of course, every religion would then jump up and argue that the God that was discovered was their God and not the other religion's God, but I'd prefer to assume that any God is letting things happen now as they are, for whatever reason, so why do anything differently.

    As for presumptions, you are assuming that among the near limitless, unimaginable possibilities of what a God might be, that the few that humans have conceived over a couple thousand years are the only possible natures of God, that someone among those religions actually had a true insight into the nature of what a true God would be.

    Instead, if we currently have no verifiable evidence of God then we can't ascribe any of the world's good and evil conditions to that God. Now if we found out a God does exist, we'd then have to look for evidence that it makes a difference to anything on earth. That's a whole new line of investigation unless our discovery of God came about from some investigation of a condition on earth. If so, could we prove that that God also created the universe?
    Last edited by KC; 15-12-2016 at 08:10 PM.

  82. #1482

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    We all like to think we matter, when all we may be is matter.


    "The third, the mediocrity principle, claims that there is nothing special about Earth’s status or position in the Universe. This could present the greatest challenge to the major Abrahamic religions, which teach that human beings are purposefully created by God and occupy a privileged position in relation to other creatures."

    In some ways, our modern scientific world was formed by the recognition of our own mediocrity, as David Weintraub notes in the book Religion and Extraterrestrial Life: “When in 1543 C.E. Copernicus hurled the Earth into orbit around the Sun, the subsequent intellectual revolution … swept the discarded remnants of the Aristotelian, geocentric Universe into the trash bin of history.”

    The Copernican revolution, as it would later come to be understood, laid the groundwork for scientists, like Davies, to eventually claim that ours is “a typical planet around a typical star in a typical galaxy”. Sagan puts it even more startlingly: “We find that we live on an insignificant planet of a humdrum star lost in a galaxy tucked away in some forgotten corner of a universe in which there are far more galaxies than people.”

    But how could a believer reconcile this with their faith that humans are the crowning achievement of God’s creation?. How could humans believe they were the apple of their creator’s eye if their planet was just one of billions


    http://www.bbc.com/future/story/2016...eligions-react
    However, the possible need for carbon on the surface of a planet and not buried in its core may mean that we are rarer than the mere counting of earth-like planets may indicate.
    Last edited by KC; 15-12-2016 at 10:30 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    You were repeatedly asked to consider the concept of scientific evidence.
    Since no scientist knows everything about any particular system, no scientific model can offer a perfect or complete explanation but I really like the testable creation model developed the scientists at Reasons to Believe. It's best described in the book "More Than a Theory" authored by Dr. Hugh Ross. I am sure that an electronic version is available online for a reasonable price or you could borrow a copy from the EPL.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    Short of that, I suggest you find evidence that could be upheld in a (contemporary) court of law (eg: Kitzmiller v. Dover).
    J Warner (Jim) Wallace is a homicide detective, and an atheist-turned Christian who has written a book called Cold Case Christianity in which he investigates the claims made by Jesus and his early followers by approaching it like any other cold case of the past where there is no living eyewitnesses nor good forensic evidence and such cases are solved by assembling cumulative, circumstantial evidences. Available online or to borrow from EPL in both electronic and paper format.

  84. #1484

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC
    If someone found incontrovertible proof that say God existed and created the universe, I really don't know what difference it would make in my life.

    Why would I change anything one iota, except for my interest in the nature of that God and the universe?


    ....

    Likely, you're saying that it wouldn't change anything in your life, because you're making the incredibly presumptuous assumption that if there is undeniable proof found for the existence of a god, it'll be the God of Christianity. Because why would it be any other god, right? That's the One True God, all others be damned.

    You honestly don't think that if it was instead Allah or Vishnu or Odin that you wouldn't have to make significant changes to many aspects of your life to satisfy the pernicious desires of whatever alternate god it turns out to be?
    To directly address this presumed presumptuousness of mine, I have to ask why I would presume the discovery of a God would in anyway align with the God of the primary religion(s) of my culture?

    If I can live a fine life not knowing or not believing in a God, how would the knowledge that God existed change anything, unless I also knew the nature of that God in so far as it directly affects my life or death. Similarly, long ago the discovery that the world was not flat meant nothing to many people because that curvature had no impact whatsoever on their lives. It still possibly doesn't to many people on earth.
    Last edited by KC; 15-12-2016 at 10:54 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post

    However, the possible need for carbon on the surface of a planet and not buried in its core may mean that we are rarer than the mere counting of earth-like planets may indicate.
    Here is a link to a brief article written by Dr. Hugh Ross on the number of possible habitable planets continuing to shrink as scientists find more habitable zones that are necessary to sustain advanced life on any planet in the universe.

    http://www.reasons.org/blogs/todays-...habitable-zone
    Last edited by edTel; 15-12-2016 at 11:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post


    It would totally depend on the nature of that God. Is it the vengeful psychopath of the Old Testament who seemed to get his rocks off slaughtering innocent women and children, or at least directing his followers to do so? Or the somewhat nicer New Age New Testament hippy version who just wants you to love everyone?
    What specific parts of the Bible do you base your characterizations of God on?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post

    Citation please. I'm not aware of any testable hypothesis out there right now that requires a causal agent outside of space and time. Argument from first cause is a philosophical argument rather than a scientific one. Some scientists believe it is necessary but in actual observation and testable theory it doesn't appear necessary. This particularly the case in current dominant cosmological theories as no "before" is necessary for the universe

    All this, of course, leaves aside the problem, if a first cause is necessary, of what caused the first cause or does that cause have to be intelligent.
    You are right I should have used the word "suggests" rather than "requires" a causal agent. if you hold that the existence of the universe and its laws does not require a causal agent (i.e. deity), why would you not at least entertain the thought that this suggests the presence of a causal agent (i.e. deity) more advanced than us? Have you ever reviewed the testable scientific model of creation put forth by Reasons to Believe? If so, what were your thoughts on it? Also do you have a reference for the theory you are citing regarding the non necessity of a first cause for the universe?

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Here is a link to a brief article written by Dr. Hugh Ross on the number of possible habitable planets continuing to shrink as scientists find more habitable zones that are necessary to sustain advanced life on any planet in the universe.

    http://www.reasons.org/blogs/todays-...habitable-zone
    Seems like the Dr. Ross likes to fabricate quotes.

    http://skepticalprobe.blogspot.ca/20...g-for-god.html

    http://www.talkreason.org/articles/ross.cfm

    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Hugh_Ross
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  89. #1489

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Since no scientist knows everything about any particular system, no scientific model can offer a perfect or complete explanation but I really like the testable creation model developed the scientists at Reasons to Believe. It's best described in the book "More Than a Theory" authored by Dr. Hugh Ross. I am sure that an electronic version is available online for a reasonable price or you could borrow a copy from the EPL.

    J Warner (Jim) Wallace is a homicide detective, and an atheist-turned Christian who has written a book called Cold Case Christianity in which he investigates the claims made by Jesus and his early followers by approaching it like any other cold case of the past where there is no living eyewitnesses nor good forensic evidence and such cases are solved by assembling cumulative, circumstantial evidences. Available online or to borrow from EPL in both electronic and paper format.
    Everyone is quite entitled to beliefs without evidence. What remains baffling are the continually futile efforts from religious groups (or individuals) attempting to rationalize their beliefs via science. The attainment has always been, at best, pseudoscience. Why do so when the result simply highlights the efforts' false conclusions and inherent ignorance?

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    Regarding Hugh Ross I highly recommend watching the debate between him and Victor Stenger:

    Scientific Arguments for a Creator? Hugh Ross vs. Victor J. Stenger

    It's two hours long but all worth it if you're interested in the topic.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post

    Citation please. I'm not aware of any testable hypothesis out there right now that requires a causal agent outside of space and time. Argument from first cause is a philosophical argument rather than a scientific one. Some scientists believe it is necessary but in actual observation and testable theory it doesn't appear necessary. This particularly the case in current dominant cosmological theories as no "before" is necessary for the universe

    All this, of course, leaves aside the problem, if a first cause is necessary, of what caused the first cause or does that cause have to be intelligent.
    You are right I should have used the word "suggests" rather than "requires" a causal agent. if you hold that the existence of the universe and its laws does not require a causal agent (i.e. deity), why would you not at least entertain the thought that this suggests the presence of a causal agent (i.e. deity) more advanced than us? Have you ever reviewed the testable scientific model of creation put forth by Reasons to Believe? If so, what were your thoughts on it? Also do you have a reference for the theory you are citing regarding the non necessity of a first cause for the universe?
    I have entertained the thought there could be a causal agent, I just haven't found anything that convinces me of it. I am familiar with the work of Hugh Ross and I would recommend the video in my previous post. My impression of Ross is that he's cherry picking data to fit his preconceptions rather than using the data as a source for theory.

    Regarding the non-necessity for a first cause in current cosmological theories:

    Stephen Hawking: The Beginning of Time

    ...the Big Bang is a beginning that is required by the dynamical laws that govern the universe. It is therefore intrinsic to the universe, and is not imposed on it from outside.
    Quantum theory introduces a new idea, that of imaginary time. Imaginary time may sound like science fiction, and it has been brought into Doctor Who. But nevertheless, it is a genuine scientific concept. One can picture it in the following way. One can think of ordinary, real, time as a horizontal line. On the left, one has the past, and on the right, the future. But there's another kind of time in the vertical direction. This is called imaginary time, because it is not the kind of time we normally experience. But in a sense, it is just as real, as what we call real time.

    ...

    ...the way the universe started out at the Big Bang would be determined by the state of the universe in imaginary time. Thus, the universe would be a completely self-contained system. It would not be determined by anything outside the physical universe, that we observe.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    What specific parts of the Bible do you base your characterizations of God on?
    Well, we can start with the Flood. God supposedly took it upon himself to kill every single human being on the planet, as well as all animals, with the exception of what was able to fit on the Ark. Next, he wiped out the entire cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Sure, maybe all of the adults there were horrible, sinful people deserving of death. But it's safe to assume that the city also had a large number of children, infants, and babies in the womb. But screw them too, right? And of course, speaking of children, let's not forget Passover, where God personally killed every first born child in all of Egypt. That was of course after he'd already visited numerous horrible plagues and disasters on the region. But the coup de grace was the death of every first born, unless the Egyptian was smart enough to paint their door with lamb's blood or whatever as the Jews did, because God is apparently incapable of seeing past that.

    All of those events were God's personal actions, and constitute genocide. There's numerous other ones where God directs his followers to do similar, like the Canaanites and Amalekites. The Old Testament god was, as I said, a vengeful psychopath by any modern, moral, and ethical definition.

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    Quote Originally Posted by edTel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post

    However, the possible need for carbon on the surface of a planet and not buried in its core may mean that we are rarer than the mere counting of earth-like planets may indicate.
    Here is a link to a brief article written by Dr. Hugh Ross on the number of possible habitable planets continuing to shrink as scientists find more habitable zones that are necessary to sustain advanced life on any planet in the universe.

    http://www.reasons.org/blogs/todays-...habitable-zone
    So as we add planets having some necessary characteristics, we have to then subtract many of them because the odds of life forming may require numerous rare and aligned conditions. Instead of trillions upon trillions of possibilities among plants we may be some factor less - say just low trillions or hundreds of billions of possibilities. The universe is a vast place, sorry, space.



    Study: Earth’s carbon points to planetary smashup
    JADE BOYD – SEPTEMBER 5, 2016

    HOUSTON — (Sept. 5, 2016) — Research by Rice University Earth scientists suggests that virtually all of Earth’s life-giving carbon could have come from a collision about 4.4 billion years ago between Earth and an embryonic planet similar to Mercury. - See more at: http://news.rice.edu/2016/09/05/stud....9vCNk0Je.dpuf

    ...
    “Even before this paper, we had published several studies that showed that even if carbon did not vaporize into space when the planet was largely molten, it would end up in the metallic core of our planet, because the iron-rich alloys there have a strong affinity for carbon,” Dasgupta said.

    Earth’s core, which is mostly iron, makes up about one-third of the planet’s mass. Earth’s silicate mantle accounts for the other two-thirds and extends more than 1,500 miles below Earth’s surface. Earth’s crust and atmosphere are so thin that they account for less than 1 percent of the planet’s mass. The mantle, atmosphere and crust constantly exchange elements, including the volatile elements needed for life.

    http://news.rice.edu/2016/09/05/stud...etary-smashup/

    "With at least 200 billion galaxies out there (and possibly even more), we're very likely talking about a Universe filled with around 1024 planets, or, for those of you who like it written out, around 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 planets in our observable Universe.
    Jan 5, 2013

    How Many Planets Are In The Universe? – Starts With A Bang
    scienceblogs.com/startswithabang/2013/01/05/how-many-planets-are-in-the-universe/



    Earth really IS special: None of the 700 million trillion planets in our known universe are similar to our own, study finds

    'Copernican principle' states Earth doesn't hold a privileged position
    The latest study challenges this belief by modelling the known universe
    None of the known 700 quintillion possible planets look like Earth
    Earth's young age and position within the Milky Way makes it unique



    Because of the run-away expansion of the universe, such observable evidence will be virtually erased one trillion years from now.
    Any civilisation arising in the far-future will be left with no clue - from astronomy at least - to how the universe began and evolved.

    Living organisms may have existed on Earth as long as 4.1bn years ago – 300m years earlier than was previously thought, new research has shown.
    If confirmed, the discovery means life emerged a remarkably short time after the Earth was formed from a primordial disc of dust and gas surrounding the sun 4.6bn years ago.

    ...


    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencete...udy-finds.html

    bolding is mine


    Universe is far bigger and more stuffed with galaxies than previously thought, scientists reveal

    More than 90 per cent of the galaxies in the cosmos have never been studied. Scientists aren't sure what they'll find there
    Andrew Griffin 14 October 2016

    The universe was already far too big to understand. But scientists just found that it’s actually much bigger than we’d previously thought.

    The observable universe is made up of at least two trillion galaxies, according to a new study. That’s 20 times more than had previously been thought.

    The new estimate comes from a British-led study that used images from the Hubble Space Telescope to create a 3D map of the universe.

    And when that was all put together, the scientists found that the map was far larger than they’d ever thought. It was previously thought that the observable universe had about 100 billion galaxies – until the new study found far more. ...


    http://www.independent.co.uk/life-st...-a7360736.html
    Last edited by KC; 16-12-2016 at 10:41 AM.

  94. #1494

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Turnbull View Post
    Regarding Hugh Ross I highly recommend watching the debate between him and Victor Stenger:

    Scientific Arguments for a Creator? Hugh Ross vs. Victor J. Stenger

    It's two hours long but all worth it if you're interested in the topic.
    While it's one thing to offer jaw-dropping premises and claims based on religious texts, attempting to associate such claims with or as science is top-shelf inanity.

    Dr. Stenger's first comment, to mild laughter and applause, is, "Hugh [Ross], I'm really looking forward to reading the peer-reviewed paper that comes out of your work." A polite rebuke, to be sure.

  95. #1495

    Default If we made contact with Aliens, how would religions react?

    Fun stuff...

    In a nutshell: if Christian salvation is only possible to creatures whose worlds have experienced an Incarnation from God, then that means God’s life is spent visiting the many worlds throughout the cosmos where he is promptly crucified and resurrected. But this seems eminently absurd to Paine, which is one of the reasons he rejects Christianity.

    But there’s another way of looking at the problem, which doesn’t occur to Paine: maybe God’s incarnation within Earth’s history “works” for all creatures throughout the Universe. This is the option George Coyne, Jesuit priest and former director of the Vatican Observatory, explores in his 2010 book Many Worlds: The New Universe, Extraterrestrial Life and the Theological Implications.

    “How could he be God and leave extra-terrestrials in their sin? God chose a very specific way to redeem human beings. He sent his only Son, Jesus, to them… Did God do this for extra-terrestrials? There is deeply embedded in Christian theology… the notion of the universality of God’s redemption and even the notion that all creation, even the inanimate, participates in some way in his redemption.”

    There’s yet another possibility. Salvation itself might be exclusively an Earth concept. Theology doesn’t require us to believe that sin affects all intelligent life, everywhere in the Universe. Maybe humans are uniquely bad. Or, to use religious language, maybe Earth is the only place unfortunate enough to have an Adam and Eve. Who is to say our star-siblings are morally compromised and in need of spiritual redemption? Maybe they have attained a more perfect spiritual existence than we have at this point in our development.

    ...

    Certain aspects of religion will have to be reconsidered, but not totally abandoned, as O’Meara notes. “If being and revelation and grace come to worlds other than Earth, that modifies in a modest way Christian self-understanding” – and, we might add, all religious self-understanding. However, he says, “It is not a question of adding or subtracting but of seeing what is basic in a new way.”

    Many religions have always believed God names the stars. Is it really a stretch to believe God names the stars’ inhabitants, too? And that they might possibly each have their own names for God?
    http://www.bbc.com/future/story/2016...eligions-react

  96. #1496

    Default

    Again, I can't even understand a lot about the universe, let alone the possibility of a supreme being. Religions though sure seem like they were created for man by man to control man.

    Substantial evidence of holographic universe

    "Imagine that everything you see, feel and hear in three dimensions (and your perception of time) in fact emanates from a flat two-dimensional field. The idea is similar to that of ordinary holograms where a three-dimensional image is encoded in a two-dimensional surface, such as in the hologram on a credit card. However, this time, the entire universe is encoded!"

    https://www.sciencedaily.com/release...0130083231.htm

  97. #1497
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    Default

    Event hosted by Taylor Seminary-College and the EP Wahl Centre on March 10th.

    GOD in the MODERN WORLD: A CHRISTIAN-ATHEIST DIALOGUE


    Is there room for God in the modern world? Or is belief in God a relic of the past?

    In this discussion, Christian theologian Randal Rauser and atheist Justin Schieber share very different views about the meaning and relevance of God for the modern age.

    This event is part of the “Crucial Conversations Series”, which aims to host uncommon discussion about challenging topics that are friendly, engaging and substantive. We hope you will join us for this free event to hear from our presenters, ask your own questions, and to engage other attendees in respectful dialogue.

    This event is co-presented by the E P Wahl Centre, the continuing education ministry of Taylor, along with the Society for Edmonton Atheists. There is no charge to attend, and light refreshments will be offered following the event.

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

  98. #1498

    Default

    If the science proves out, this will change how we see the world and how we see any potential for a God(s).

    Physics suggests that the future is already set in stone
    Our intuition tells us that the future can be changed, but Einstein's theory of relativity suggests that there is no real difference between the future and the past

    http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20170...y-set-in-stone

  99. #1499
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Westmount, Edmonton
    Posts
    5,326

    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong"

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