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Jokes/Interweb Things Thread, Sagan brilliance in Fun Stuff; @ jinnatronnix : Yeah I didn't say (or mean) it was true, just that you couldn't rule it out. I ...
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    @ jinnatronnix :
    Yeah I didn't say (or mean) it was true, just that you couldn't rule it out.

    I think Christianity is logically coherent, and is the current end point of religious consideration. It currently withstands scrutiny, but that's not saying it can't be improved.

    @jamesb :
    I didn't say it made anything more likely. In a universe without either the probability of either occurring would be infinitesimally small.

    I'm not saying that he does, I'm saying that I believe that he does, through faith. God is not demonstrable > which is why faith is required.
    Last edited by mark; 2nd August 2010 at 11:20 AM.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    I think Christianity is logically coherent, and is the current end point of religious consideration. It currently withstands scrutiny, but that's not saying it can't be improved.
    How can you say that you think Christianity is logically coherent, and that it withstands scrutiny? There is a vast array of evidence that neither is true! What you should be saying is that you have faith that it is correct.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    Yeah I didn't say (or mean) it was true, just that you couldn't rule it out.

    I think Christianity is logically coherent, and is the current end point of religious consideration. It currently withstands scrutiny, but that's not saying it can't be improved.
    Any theory withstands scrutiny if you accept the axioms it is based on. Since in the case of religion those axioms are a matter of belief, any believer of any religion will believe it stands up to scrutiny, and their belief in the theory will be as justifiable as any other believer's, of any religion.

    Since the foundation of any system cannot be proven through the system itself (mathematics is the best example of this) there is no way to prove or disprove the system if you are a believer. Since the axiom itself is intrinsically untestable (as far as we currently know) all that can be done is to put forward evidence, none of which can be conclusive.

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    @ jinnatronnix :
    Yes you're right I joined a few atheist forums to follow my interest in the subject.

    @ Localzuk :
    There is no evidence to the contrary (The subject is theology & not science).

    @ jamesb :
    I like that. You assume that all religions are equally developed, and I don't think they are. Only Christianity achieves directness with God where others achieve this through temporary sacrifice. Buddhism is another kettle of fish which I don't think goes near to the completeness of Christianity. Lacking belief is also a world view subject to the same limitations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    @ jinnatronnix :@ Localzuk :
    There is no evidence to the contrary (The subject is theology & not science).
    There is no evidence in favour either. Flying Cosmic Teapot argument.

    @ jamesb :
    I like that. You assume that all religions are equally developed, and I don't think they are. Only Christianity achieves directness with God where others achieve this through temporary sacrifice. Buddhism is another kettle of fish which I don't think goes near to the completeness of Christianity. Lacking belief is also a world view subject to the same limitations.
    I don't assume that all religions are equally developed at all - I state that they are all equally valid, all being internally consistent (to a degree, and interpretation covers a huge variety of sins) and all being based upon axioms which have to be accepted on faith and cannot be tested.

    I'm glad that you have such a clear understanding of all the various religions, well enough to know that only yours is the right one which allows you to speak directly to god. Unfortunately there are many, many religions which allow for a direct interface with $deity including several variants of paganism. Meanwhile there are variants of Christianity which consider there to be intermediaries between man and god.

    Also claiming that you have direct contact with god through your religion makes it no more or less valid than any other - unless you can demonstrate that link in a way which can be tested in order to test the fundamental axiom of religion by an objective viewer.

    Finally your comment about lacking belief - you are correct in that a non-believer (which by your view includes all non-Christians who do not subscribe to your specific interpretation) is still accepting an axiom on which they are basing their world view. However their fundamental assumption does not require so many leaps of faith to accept - no claims are made of an untestable being or beings somehow supervising all things without involvement in the system.

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    mark's Avatar
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    @ jamesb :
    Flying cosmic Teapot : God is not demonstrable

    What is the point then? Answer: positivity.

    Yes I've studied a lot of religions and I can say for myself that none are as developed as Christianity. That's how I can believe Christianity to be true for myself. No doubt someone more academic than myself could demonstrate this to you.

    Faith, in the Christian context, is the acceptance of information believed to be true.

    What claims are made? Logical conclusions are drawn. In one scenario, everything emanates from god, in another, it doesn't. In Christianity God is supervising and is involved.

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    As he is in Judaism and Islam as well....

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    @ jamesb :
    Flying cosmic Teapot : God is not demonstrable

    What is the point then? Answer: positivity.
    Accepting claims without demonstrable proof is commonly considered foolish. If you are happy to do so, then I have $6 000 000 in a bank in Nigeria which I am happy to share with you should you help me transfer it out of the country. Your expenses will be minimal, and more than compensated by the money coming in.

    Yes I've studied a lot of religions and I can say for myself that none are as developed as Christianity. That's how I can believe Christianity to be true for myself. No doubt someone more academic than myself could demonstrate this to you.
    Christianity is split into thousands of different variants and interpretations. Which of these, precisely is more developed? Additionally how are you defining development? Christianity is not the oldest religion, so what makes it so much more developed than any other?

    Faith, in the Christian context, is the acceptance of information believed to be true.
    You forgot to add - without evidence.

    What claims are made? Logical conclusions are drawn. In one scenario, everything emanates from god, in another, it doesn't. In Christianity God is supervising and is involved.
    Logical conclusions? Christianity is, in your opinion, well-developed and therefore is automatically correct? You are not drawing logical conclusions from available data, you are drawing a logical conclusion given the assumption that a deity exists. Since that is not a testable theory any conclusions drawn from it are also untestable and in dispute.

    As for claims - you are claiming that Christianity is true. That is quite a clear claim. I am simply claiming that it is no more true, or testable, than any other religion. This does not necessarily equate to saying that all religions are invalid, or that there is not one correct and true religion. It is neither an endorsement or a condemnation of religion, but simply pointing out that no particular viewpoint based upon an article of faith is any more valid than any other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    Accepting claims without demonstrable proof is commonly considered foolish. If you are happy to do so, then I have $6 000 000 in a bank in Nigeria which I am happy to share with you should you help me transfer it out of the country. Your expenses will be minimal, and more than compensated by the money coming in.
    Welcome to logical fallacies r us. You can search for evidence of the non evidential all you like. Me, I'll stick with common sense thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    Christianity is split into thousands of different variants and interpretations. Which of these, precisely is more developed? Additionally how are you defining development? Christianity is not the oldest religion, so what makes it so much more developed than any other?
    Christianity as a whole is more developed. I'm sure you're aware of the development of world religions, and the aspects of Christianity which borrow heavily from those. Time doesn't make something more developed. A more complete and logical coherence does.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    You forgot to add - without evidence.
    What do you call the information that it's based upon then?

    Empirical evidence doesn't apply, unless you insist on thinking fallaciously.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    Logical conclusions? Christianity is, in your opinion, well-developed and therefore is automatically correct? You are not drawing logical conclusions from available data, you are drawing a logical conclusion given the assumption that a deity exists. Since that is not a testable theory any conclusions drawn from it are also untestable and in dispute.
    No, Christianity is not automatically correct in my opinion. It's essential, and inherent, that we work that out for ourselves. Now on the different subject of belief in God, yes this is an assumption built on faith as defined above; and necessarily contestable and permanently disputable.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    As for claims - you are claiming that Christianity is true. That is quite a clear claim. I am simply claiming that it is no more true, or testable, than any other religion. This does not necessarily equate to saying that all religions are invalid, or that there is not one correct and true religion. It is neither an endorsement or a condemnation of religion, but simply pointing out that no particular viewpoint based upon an article of faith is any more valid than any other.
    I trust that it is true, yes. I claim that it's true for me. That being personal. I don't claim that it's true for you. I see it as superior: being positive against a neutral. I've not said that other world views are invalid. I've merely observed the weakness of those positions in relation to my own. I could believe no other way, and I don't think you could either... if you did you'd believe in something you weren't convinced of.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    Welcome to logical fallacies r us. You can search for evidence of the non evidential all you like. Me, I'll stick with common sense thanks
    Uh...

    So wait, you're now trying to use the argument that because there is no evidence, that's evidence? But you've already said that god supervises and is involved in the universe. Involvement requires action, action requires a result, therefore involvement means that there should be evidence.

    Christianity as a whole is more developed. I'm sure you're aware of the development of world religions, and the aspects of Christianity which borrow heavily from those. Time doesn't make something more developed. A more complete and logical coherence does.
    A more complete and logical coherence would not then fragment into so many different sects with individual beliefs - the authenticity of the tenets would be self-evident through logical evaluation. Segmentation denotes that the religion is not coherent.

    What do you call the information that it's based upon then?

    Empirical evidence doesn't apply, unless you insist on thinking fallaciously.
    I call it faith - not based on any information. As for empirical evidence you appear to be arguing the same way as me - that there is no proof, no empirical evidence, no justification, just faith. Faith relies on the acceptance of a theory despite the lack of evidence.

    And for your last statement about thinking fallaciously, basing decisions on empirical evidence is not thinking fallaciously I'm afraid to say. I'm not quite sure how you came to that conclusion. I'm not even sure if your arguments are still coherent here.

    No, Christianity is not automatically correct in my opinion. It's essential, and inherent, that we work that out for ourselves. Now on the different subject of belief in God, yes this is an assumption built on faith as defined above; and necessarily contestable and permanently disputable.
    So Christianity is not automatically correct, it is just better and more developed?

    You cannot separate the issue of belief in $deity from religion itself. Therefore any arguments which apply to the existence of $deity apply to the validity of religion. The practices of a religion itself can be argued about separately, but still can only be valid if the base assumption that $deity exists is true.

    I trust that it is true, yes. I claim that it's true for me. That being personal. I don't claim that it's true for you. I see it as superior: being positive against a neutral. I've not said that other world views are invalid. I've merely observed the weakness of those positions in relation to my own. I could believe no other way, and I don't think you could either... if you did you'd believe in something you weren't convinced of.
    So you don't claim that it's true for anyone else, just that anyone who believes differently from you is inferior and arguing from a weaker position? I'm sorry to say that I've not really noticed any strength in your arguments, or really any true arguments. Your claims seem to be centralised around -

    - I believe, therefore $diety is
    - My particular sect of Christianity is more developed (by my definition), therefore it is superior

    Please correct me if I've somehow missed something more solid in your arguments.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    So wait, you're now trying to use the argument that because there is no evidence, that's evidence? But you've already said that god supervises and is involved in the universe. Involvement requires action, action requires a result, therefore involvement means that there should be evidence.
    Not at all. If God created everything, then everything is evidence of God's creation yes? God's observable nature is that he doesn't leave verifiable evidence.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    A more complete and logical coherence would not then fragment into so many different sects with individual beliefs - the authenticity of the tenets would be self-evident through logical evaluation. Segmentation denotes that the religion is not coherent.
    Non sequitur. Christianity is united by the Nicene Creed of 381. Absolutely every Christian (by Christian definition) agrees completely with that, and are united in it. Any divisions within the church are of little significance to the underlying tenets agreed upon by all.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    I call it faith - not based on any information. As for empirical evidence you appear to be arguing the same way as me - that there is no proof, no empirical evidence, no justification, just faith. Faith relies on the acceptance of a theory despite the lack of evidence.
    I already explained the requirements for Christian faith... that it has to be based on information that is trusted to be true. Absolutely there cannot be empirical evidence.. that's built into Christianity. You need to keep evidence and empirical evidence separate to keep your statements coherent.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    And for your last statement about thinking fallaciously, basing decisions on empirical evidence is not thinking fallaciously I'm afraid to say. I'm not quite sure how you came to that conclusion. I'm not even sure if your arguments are still coherent here.
    It's quite simple. You're applying a rule which doesn't apply. In a strict observation of verifiable proofs then empirical evidence is useful. Once you observe a subject which doesn't have verifiable proofs how can you introduce the lack of verifiable evidence as relevant? It's a nonsense consideration.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    So Christianity is not automatically correct, it is just better and more developed?
    Christianity is more logically coherent and complete.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    You cannot separate the issue of belief in $deity from religion itself. Therefore any arguments which apply to the existence of $deity apply to the validity of religion. The practices of a religion itself can be argued about separately, but still can only be valid if the base assumption that $deity exists is true.
    You're combining of the two clearly misrepresents either faith or religion. Religion is a coherent model of belief. Faith is the acceptance as truth of information presented.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    So you don't claim that it's true for anyone else, just that anyone who believes differently from you is inferior and arguing from a weaker position? I'm sorry to say that I've not really noticed any strength in your arguments, or really any true arguments. Your claims seem to be centralised around -

    - I believe, therefore $diety is
    - My particular sect of Christianity is more developed (by my definition), therefore it is superior

    Please correct me if I've somehow missed something more solid in your arguments.
    What I've said is we all must do that (believe our own conclusions to be correct) to be true to ourselves. My position is simply to state that the playing field is level. Your position must therefore state that the playing field isn't level, and that only you are right. Or do you concede that both our world views are equally valid, whilst modestly asserting that you hold your world view to be right for you.

    To correct your conclusions :
    - I believe through faith, therefore $deity 'is' for me
    - I've rationalised my world view

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Ok I think where I'm getting confused is when you use the word 'evidence' and then say it is different to empirical evidence. Evidence, by its very nature is either proof for or against something. Please stop trying to use 'evidence' as something which can be used in anything other than its traditional meaning - ie. proof.

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    Oh come on you lot - everyone knows that George Lucas is god.

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    Christianity is more logically coherent and complete.
    Explain how/why.

    The Evolution of Religion

    In the beginning any religion worked out, if you predicted anything right you were worshiped. Then we began to record things, keep track of predictions. The religions that got more things right won out, survival of the fittest. Religions merged, mutated, created new offshoots.

    Over time we learned more science, now the religion that predicted that not paying the sarcrifice to the god to make the sun rise ended up with no followers, gradually religions predicted less and less, signs that god existed were explained away as natural phenomena.

    Today the only religions that haven't been abandoned are ones that predict nothing, have no proof that god exists, in fact make a point that no proof is needed. The only god left is the one that isn't falsifiable

    A statistical proof that god doesn't exist:

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    Not at all. If God created everything, then everything is evidence of God's creation yes? God's observable nature is that he doesn't leave verifiable evidence.
    No, that's not an observable nature. That is an absence of evidence. It's somewhat like saying that there are aliens among us, because you can't see them. You can prove anything you want that way, so long as you can't provide any evidence for it.

    Non sequitur. Christianity is united by the Nicene Creed of 381. Absolutely every Christian (by Christian definition) agrees completely with that, and are united in it. Any divisions within the church are of little significance to the underlying tenets agreed upon by all.
    Sorry, would that be the original or revised Nicene creed?

    I already explained the requirements for Christian faith... that it has to be based on information that is trusted to be true. Absolutely there cannot be empirical evidence.. that's built into Christianity. You need to keep evidence and empirical evidence separate to keep your statements coherent.
    You cannot separate empirical evidence and evidence. You are suggesting a difference where there is none. If you have to rely on faith for your information, your information is not evidence. Please try to stick to the common definitions, it makes everything so much easier.

    It's quite simple. You're applying a rule which doesn't apply. In a strict observation of verifiable proofs then empirical evidence is useful. Once you observe a subject which doesn't have verifiable proofs how can you introduce the lack of verifiable evidence as relevant? It's a nonsense consideration.
    You cannot observe something which does not have verifiable proofs. Observation is a verifiable proof - it can be reproduced, replicated and demonstrated. Suggesting that observation and proof are separate things is nonsense.

    Christianity is more logically coherent and complete.
    I would have to say that your own arguments have completely invalidated this statement.

    You're combining of the two clearly misrepresents either faith or religion. Religion is a coherent model of belief. Faith is the acceptance as truth of information presented.
    Religion is based on faith. Faith is the acceptance of a tenet in absence of all evidence. I am not combining the two, but pointing out that one relies on the other.

    What I've said is we all must do that (believe our own conclusions to be correct) to be true to ourselves. My position is simply to state that the playing field is level. Your position must therefore state that the playing field isn't level, and that only you are right. Or do you concede that both our world views are equally valid, whilst modestly asserting that you hold your world view to be right for you.
    I have never stated any level of superiority over Christians, or any other religion, or athiests. You have stated that if someone disagrees with you, their world view is inferior. I concede that all religions are equally valid, or invalid. However it is evident that you do not understand my world view in the slightest.

    Incidentally Christianity is an evangelical religion. If you accept it's tenets should you not also be trying to convince others of it's truth? If you do not accept its tenets, should you really be calling yourself a Christian?

    To correct your conclusions :
    - I believe through faith, therefore $deity 'is' for me
    - I've rationalised my world view
    You have not rationalised your world view, as you have made no attempt to evaluate your basic, accepted axioms.

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