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Old 21st June 2022, 09:46 PM   #201
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
One reason for faith might be if somebody wanted better than three score and ten years of a meaningless existence.
That's wishful thinking. Not a justification for tithing 10 percent of your income to some smarmy con man.
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Old 21st June 2022, 09:53 PM   #202
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
That's wishful thinking. Not a justification for tithing 10 percent of your income to some smarmy con man.
Each individual has to make their own evaluation on that point.
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Old 21st June 2022, 10:43 PM   #203
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
I'm saying the practice of owning human beings as property has always been abhorrent. Just ask the slaves.
And I'm saying that the practice wasn't abhorrent to the people who practiced it at the time. I will ask my question again: Is there some objective standard that you believe is behind morality?
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Old 22nd June 2022, 01:01 AM   #204
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
If I define a thing to be a thing and say it has to have these 5 specific qualities, and I examine something and it only has 4 of the qualities it is not a thing.

A believer in a god such as Zeus is the one that says what Zues is, they give him 5 qualities. We go and look and can't find a thing with the 5 qualities that makes it a Zeus according to the believer or we find something that contradicts one of those qualities therefore the Zeus the believers believe in doesn't exist.

Something else could of course exist but it isn't the Zeus the believers believe in.

You are trying to broaden what I claim, my claims about gods are always limited to being about the gods I know people do or have worshipped, not about any "theoretical type" of gods we can think about. Why we even use the term god for those types of speculations is beyond me. Keep "god" to what it has always meant - beings of some description that people do or have believed in.

Well, I think you already answered the question in your first reply - when you said that you "Know" God does not exist, you did not actually mean "know" ... what you meant (as you yourself said) is that you think it's 99.9% likely that the God does not exist.

OK, I was intending to avoid further discussion, simply because the point is already made (and it's a very important one, see below). But just very briefly on what you have said above - you start their with an untrue fallacy of claiming that the God must have 5 specific properties ... but we already went through that type of argument, and the fact is that Christinas (for example) do not all agree that a specific set of all the same things must apply to their God otherwise they'd accept that their God does not exist ... the all say that the God exists anyway, even if certain things are no longer believed from the earliest biblical stories, and even if other Christians believe slightly different things about the God ... BUT -

- we are considering this as atheists who do not believe any of their claims about that God ... and the issue for us is whether or not their God could exist at least as a creator of the universe, and we'd probably have to also include a creator of Mankind ... and for that I already drew your attention to what the Archbishop of Canterbury (no less!!) gave as answers to Richard Dawkins, where he believed that the God at least created the Universe, created Man, and that at least some miracles were produced such as Jesus rising from the dead and the raising of Lazarus ... we cannot prove that those 4 things never happened ... you cannot actually "know" that those few things never happened ... you and I do not believe it, and apparently I believe it far, FAR less than you do ... but neither you nor I nor anyone else has so far actually proved that God and those things are known as impossible ... if you really did "know", which does mean you are claiming to have a proof, then that would have been headline news all over the world for ever more and Christianity would have collapsed! ... but no such "known" proof has ever been produced.

OK, so without wishing to labour these very obvious and inescapable points any further, the POINT is -

- as atheists, when we find ourselves in conversation with theists (and that still happens fairly regularly on this forum/site), we do ourselves a huge and embarrassing disservice if we try to tell the theist that we "Know" their God could not possibly exist ... because that is a claim that we cannot honestly make ... and when we do that, the theist can quite rightly dismiss atheists as either liars or else idiots who do not understand the use of basic language.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 02:07 AM   #205
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Well, I think you already answered the question in your first reply - when you said that you "Know" God does not exist, you did not actually mean "know" ... what you meant (as you yourself said) is that you think it's 99.9% likely that the God does not exist.

OK, I was intending to avoid further discussion, simply because the point is already made (and it's a very important one, see below). But just very briefly on what you have said above - you start their with an untrue fallacy of claiming that the God must have 5 specific properties ... but we already went through that type of argument, and the fact is that Christinas (for example) do not all agree that a specific set of all the same things must apply to their God otherwise they'd accept that their God does not exist ... the all say that the God exists anyway, even if certain things are no longer believed from the earliest biblical stories, and even if other Christians believe slightly different things about the God ... BUT -

- we are considering this as atheists who do not believe any of their claims about that God ... and the issue for us is whether or not their God could exist at least as a creator of the universe, and we'd probably have to also include a creator of Mankind ... and for that I already drew your attention to what the Archbishop of Canterbury (no less!!) gave as answers to Richard Dawkins, where he believed that the God at least created the Universe, created Man, and that at least some miracles were produced such as Jesus rising from the dead and the raising of Lazarus ... we cannot prove that those 4 things never happened ... you cannot actually "know" that those few things never happened ... you and I do not believe it, and apparently I believe it far, FAR less than you do ... but neither you nor I nor anyone else has so far actually proved that God and those things are known as impossible ... if you really did "know", which does mean you are claiming to have a proof, then that would have been headline news all over the world for ever more and Christianity would have collapsed! ... but no such "known" proof has ever been produced.

OK, so without wishing to labour these very obvious and inescapable points any further, the POINT is -

- as atheists, when we find ourselves in conversation with theists (and that still happens fairly regularly on this forum/site), we do ourselves a huge and embarrassing disservice if we try to tell the theist that we "Know" their God could not possibly exist ... because that is a claim that we cannot honestly make ... and when we do that, the theist can quite rightly dismiss atheists as either liars or else idiots who do not understand the use of basic language.

Nah, no deity as worshipped according to the doctrine of any of the major* religions can exist as the doctrines each self-contradictory.


*TBD
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Old 22nd June 2022, 02:52 AM   #206
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
And I'm saying that the practice wasn't abhorrent to the people who practiced it at the time. I will ask my question again: Is there some objective standard that you believe is behind morality?
Isn't that the case for slavers today as well?
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Old 22nd June 2022, 04:15 AM   #207
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
I'm saying the practice of owning human beings as property has always been abhorrent. Just ask the slaves.
I don't know about it. The accounts of slaves are certainly not universally negative.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 05:57 AM   #208
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
And I'm saying that the practice wasn't abhorrent to the people who practiced it at the time. I will ask my question again: Is there some objective standard that you believe is behind morality?
But that is the moral relativism that theists condemn. The standard for theists does not have to be objective. It's supposed to be God, who is supposed to have known what was right all along. That means ether that he didn't think slavery wrong, or knew it was wrong but condoned and promoted it for some kind of obscure goddish reason for a period, because, we're supposed to presume, it was necessary for some bigger scheme that would come out right.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 07:04 AM   #209
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Each individual has to make their own evaluation on that point.
Nonsense.

Again faith, is wishful thinking, not a reliable pathway to reality. You suggested that living longer than 3 score and 10 was a justification for faith

All the faith in the world has never demonstrated that you will live longer.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 07:06 AM   #210
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
And I'm saying that the practice wasn't abhorrent to the people who practiced it at the time. I will ask my question again: Is there some objective standard that you believe is behind morality?
People will justify immoral behavior.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 07:20 AM   #211
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
But that is the moral relativism that theists condemn. The standard for theists does not have to be objective. It's supposed to be God, who is supposed to have known what was right all along. That means ether that he didn't think slavery wrong, or knew it was wrong but condoned and promoted it for some kind of obscure goddish reason for a period, because, we're supposed to presume, it was necessary for some bigger scheme that would come out right.
Exactly!!

God according to the Bible is said to be unchanging yet God finds things in the beginning of the Bible as objectionable which are OK at the end of his book. But not for misogyny and definitely not for slavery. Nowhere in the Bible does it suggest in anyway that slavery was wrong.

Either God is a moral authority or this is the evolution of morality. What's also clear is there was never any kind of objective morality in the Bible.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 07:57 AM   #212
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Nonsense.

Again faith, is wishful thinking, not a reliable pathway to reality. You suggested that living longer than 3 score and 10 was a justification for faith

All the faith in the world has never demonstrated that you will live longer.
Now that is a strawman argument for sure. The question is whether you can live again after your allotted time on this planet is over and you don't have the authority to tell anybody to abandon all hope on that front.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:15 AM   #213
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Do you think the slaves wanted to be slaves?
Bet a lot of them did. Bet a lot more didn't mind much, things being what they were.

Nowadays citizenship is widely seen as an automatic entitlement, a human right, even. Historically, multi-tiered membership in a community was very much the norm. It's foolish to think people living in those times and places would share our modern mores.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:16 AM   #214
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
But that is the moral relativism that theists condemn.
Not just theists. There are atheists condemning it in this very thread.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:17 AM   #215
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Nonsense.

Again faith, is wishful thinking, not a reliable pathway to reality. You suggested that living longer than 3 score and 10 was a justification for faith

All the faith in the world has never demonstrated that you will live longer.
If it were demonstrated, it wouldn't be faith. That's the whole point of faith. You (choose to) believe, sight unseen, that life continues after death, because that makes you feel better.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:20 AM   #216
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Now that is a strawman argument for sure. The question is whether you can live again after your allotted time on this planet is over and you don't have the authority to tell anybody to abandon all hope on that front.
How the hell is that a strawman? You clearly don't know what one is.

What does authority have to do with it? You have absolutely zero evidence of a second or extended lifespan. This is wishful thinking.

Con men will promise you anything as long as you put money in their collection plate. Faith is gullibility.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:38 AM   #217
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
If it were demonstrated, it wouldn't be faith. That's the whole point of faith. You (choose to) believe, sight unseen, that life continues after death, because that makes you feel better.
Instead you waste the only life you know you have based on the promises of others who have their own selfish motives.

If faith can lead you to thousands of different and contradictory gods, it cannot be anything more than sticking your head in the sand and hoping. Faith is probably the worst thing about religion. Close your eyes and mind. It is the polar opposite of skepticism.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 09:07 AM   #218
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
How the hell is that a strawman?
If you can't tell the difference between postponing death and life after death then I can't help you.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 09:09 AM   #219
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
If you can't tell the difference between postponing death and life after death then I can't help you.
I really have no idea what you're babbling about. But any idea that a fantasy man in the clouds promising a long life is
wishful thinking.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 09:19 AM   #220
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
If you can't tell the difference between postponing death and life after death then I can't help you.
Oooh, oooh, that one's easy! One can be shown to happen, while the other can't!
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Old 22nd June 2022, 09:51 AM   #221
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
If you can't tell the difference between postponing death and life after death then I can't help you.
Let's see. You suggested that faith is justified because 3 score and ten was not enough. I inferred from that you had hitched your wagon to a longer or perhaps eternal life.

I responded that relying on faith for this was wishful thinking. Now again, since you think I'm dense. Please explain how my response is a strawman.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 10:03 AM   #222
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Let's see. You suggested that faith is justified because 3 score and ten was not enough. I inferred from that you had hitched your wagon to a longer or perhaps eternal life.

I responded that relying on faith for this was wishful thinking. Now again, since you think I'm dense. Please explain how my response is a strawman.
Now that you have added the highlighted words, it is no longer a strawman.

I don't know why you say I have "hitched my wagon" to this. It is just a logical conclusion that if you want more than just a temporary (but ultimately meaningless) existence then faith (or, if you prefer, "wishful thinking") is all you have. Why should somebody not go for it if they want to?
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Old 22nd June 2022, 10:10 AM   #223
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Now that you have added the highlighted words, it is no longer a strawman.

I don't know why you say I have "hitched my wagon" to this. It is just a logical conclusion that if you want more than just a temporary (but ultimately meaningless) existence then faith (or, if you prefer, "wishful thinking") is all you have. Why should somebody not go for it?
Now who's pitching a strawman? We give our life its meaning.

Because you have no more evidence of that then if you send me 10,000 dollars I'll send you a million dollars. All you need is faith/wishful thinking.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 02:25 PM   #224
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
One of the questions I pose to Christians is this.

Who is more evil, God or the Devil? And how did you decide?
Trick question.

Going by the book, God made the devil, and the devil has a specific job: to temp man into committing sins. The devil works for God, and therefore can't be evil.

Evil is a human thing.

This is what happens when your religion is based on a 3000-year old book, and an almost 2000 year-old book that have been revised so many times they have passages which contradict each other.

And yes, most "Christians" will (incorrectly) cite Paradise Lost as biblical text in telling the story of Lucifer, but even in that story he still loves God. He just has it out for humans, and even then it's all about corrupting them. In the end, evil is a choice made by people.

Anyway, it's been forty years since I've been in a church. I did some theological studies in the 1990s, and had a great teacher. But it helped me walk away from religion all together, so I have no dog in this fight.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 03:15 PM   #225
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Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post
Trick question.

Going by the book, God made the devil, and the devil has a specific job: to temp man into committing sins. The devil works for God, and therefore can't be evil.

Evil is a human thing.

This is what happens when your religion is based on a 3000-year old book, and an almost 2000 year-old book that have been revised so many times they have passages which contradict each other.

And yes, most "Christians" will (incorrectly) cite Paradise Lost as biblical text in telling the story of Lucifer, but even in that story he still loves God. He just has it out for humans, and even then it's all about corrupting them. In the end, evil is a choice made by people.

Anyway, it's been forty years since I've been in a church. I did some theological studies in the 1990s, and had a great teacher. But it helped me walk away from religion all together, so I have no dog in this fight.
It's not really a trick question. It is straightforward. Christians have been indoctrinated to think of God as loving and kind. God is great etc. And the devil is evil because he leads man away from God.

But as for deeds recorded in the Bible it's difficult to see God as good and loving. The devils while not necessarily good is hardly bad or evil in comparison.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 04:23 PM   #226
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
People will justify immoral behavior.
I just call it cruel/harmful behavior to avoid the mess of the philosophical debate.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 06:51 PM   #227
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Isn't that the case for slavers today as well?
Yes, absolutely. That's my point.

Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
People will justify immoral behavior.
By declaring it not immoral.

Use the boogeyman term "moral relativism" if you like, but the fact is that morality changes according to time and location. What is immoral for you and me now was totally not immoral by the standards of bronze-age middle easterners. There is no objective standard by which we can judge morality. There is only what culture and society collectively decides is moral and immoral. Objective morality is what religion claims, but even that has changed over time, as even a cursory reading of the Old Testament will show.

The best that you can say is that the Old Testament supports practices that we now consider immoral. You can't say that those practices were immoral in the time and place that they were practiced, because nobody who practiced them thought they were - they did not have the perspective or worldview that we in our time and place have.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 07:11 PM   #228
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Yes, absolutely. That's my point.

By declaring it not immoral.

Use the boogeyman term "moral relativism" if you like, but the fact is that morality changes according to time and location. What is immoral for you and me now was totally not immoral by the standards of bronze-age middle easterners. There is no objective standard by which we can judge morality. There is only what culture and society collectively decides is moral and immoral. Objective morality is what religion claims, but even that has changed over time, as even a cursory reading of the Old Testament will show.

The best that you can say is that the Old Testament supports practices that we now consider immoral. You can't say that those practices were immoral in the time and place that they were practiced, because nobody who practiced them thought they were - they did not have the perspective or worldview that we in our time and place have.
I generally agree with you. Homosexuality in ancient Rome was not viewed as immoral. It became immoral over time.

But certain things regardless of whether they were accepted or not was wrong, is wrong and always will be wrong. Owning human beings as property, murder and thievery for example.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 07:37 PM   #229
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
I generally agree with you. Homosexuality in ancient Rome was not viewed as immoral. It became immoral over time.

But certain things regardless of whether they were accepted or not was wrong, is wrong and always will be wrong. Owning human beings as property, murder and thievery for example.
From our point of view, yes. But there is no such thing as an objective morality that exists outside of society and culture. It will always be culturally dependent.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:11 PM   #230
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
From our point of view, yes. But there is no such thing as an objective morality that exists outside of society and culture. It will always be culturally dependent.
Thievery and murder seem to be universal morals in every society. Now I grant everything you are saying. I'm just saying emphatically that slavery is and always was wrong. Regardless if it was culturally acceptable in different time and place.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:18 PM   #231
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Thievery and murder seem to be universal morals in every society. Now I grant everything you are saying. I'm just saying emphatically that slavery is and always was wrong. Regardless if it was culturally acceptable in different time and place.
The only way you can say that is if you are postulating the existence of an external objective morality that is not dependent on culture and society, which is by its nature a religious claim.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:49 PM   #232
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
The only way you can say that is if you are postulating the existence of an external objective morality that is not dependent on culture and society, which is by its nature a religious claim.
Now I am not. I certainly am not .asking a religious claim. I also don't believe in an objective morality. I am saying that. If we employ John Rawls veil of ignorance it's preasy to see that slavery is wrong.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:59 PM   #233
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Now I am not. I certainly am not .asking a religious claim. I also don't believe in an objective morality. I am saying that. If we employ John Rawls veil of ignorance it's preasy to see that slavery is wrong.
Only insomuch as you accept John Rawls' veil of ignorance as valid, which not everybody does. The US Republican Party certainly appears not to.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 09:27 PM   #234
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Now who's pitching a strawman? We give our life its meaning.
Once you are dead, nothing ever mattered.

Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Because you have no more evidence of that then if you send me 10,000 dollars I'll send you a million dollars. All you need is faith/wishful thinking.
Faith in you?
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Old 22nd June 2022, 09:53 PM   #235
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
It's not really a trick question. It is straightforward. Christians have been indoctrinated to think of God as loving and kind. God is great etc. And the devil is evil because he leads man away from God.

But as for deeds recorded in the Bible it's difficult to see God as good and loving. The devils while not necessarily good is hardly bad or evil in comparison.
First, not all Christians are created equal. Some belong to churches wherein their priests are compelled to keep their parishioners up to date with the latest theological thinking, and developments as newly discovered texts are discovered and translated, and old texts are retranslated with fresh eyes. Then there are the branches of Christianity where the King James Bible is the sole text, and not open to debate.

I was an Episcopalian. In the 1970s, the young priests were all about challenging established doctrine and dogma, and this propelled the church forward with women, and gay priests. Theology is a branch of history, it not only translates the texts, but applies them to the times and people who wrote them. Problem is that most of this information doesn't get passed down to the street level any more (see the Catholic Church), and this leaves the faithful with a muted, two-dimensional grasp of religion.

This two-dimensional grasp bleeds into conversations like this one.

The first issue is that people of all of the western religions have a problem reconciling a "loving God" with the actions of the environment this God created. They'll ask how a loving God allows a child to die of cancer, or a faithful town to be destroyed by a flood, or tornado. And the correct answer is God gave you free will when the universe and its elements were set into motion. So yes, God sits back while terrible things happen because that's the way it was designed. Were God to step in to prevent disaster, we would no longer have free will, and God is no longer the "creator", just middle management.

The second issue is the definition of evil. We just had a shark attack here today, is the shark evil? No. The shark is a shark, doing shark things. Yet there are some who would say sharks are evil. Is the devil evil because he tempts God's children into sinning. Again, no. The devil is quality control. Most of us didn't do anything seriously evil today, and those of us who did will probably accept sole responsibility for our actions. Also, most of us [I choose to believe] are good people, and good people can't be tempted into doing bad things. The devil is just doing his job. We know this because the good book says God made the devil, and because the devil is an archangel, different rules apply. Angels have strict rules to follow, mankind only has ten. Therefore, if God wanted the devil to knock it off, the devil would move onto the next job.

The third issue is the age-old problem of lack of responsibility. The devil is always blamed for evil when men fall short. Evil has always been a choice. Unlike natural disasters, or physical ailments which happen as a course of nature, evil is always an conscious decision by the men and women to turn to it. Some churches will focus of the devil as a way to lure troubled people into their fold. They tell people they are not responsible for their actions, but are victims of the devil. If bad things are happening then it's because the devil is doing it. Never once will members of these flocks be asked to look inside to find the evil, it's always out there with the sodomites, and the liberals, and the *insert bogeyman of the week here *.

Bottom line: If we had a loving God that prevented any bad things from happening to us, we be living in a zoo, and we probably wouldn't be happy then either.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 10:48 PM   #236
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Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post
The third issue is the age-old problem of lack of responsibility. The devil is always blamed for evil when men fall short.
I agree with most of what you wrote, but I don't think the above is true. Certainly the devil is blamed for tempting people, but it's free-will -- mankind's freedom to choose to sin -- that is to blame for personal sin. Thus apologies like Jimmy Swaggart's apologising to God for his sin of using prostitutes (warning: filmed on a potato!):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pCpeeaIfF9c

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Old 23rd June 2022, 01:05 AM   #237
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Thievery and murder seem to be universal morals in every society. Now I grant everything you are saying. I'm just saying emphatically that slavery is and always was wrong. Regardless if it was culturally acceptable in different time and place.
Thievery and murder are words for specific things that we consider immoral by definition. That's why we call them thievery and murder.

What actually counts as immoral taking, or immoral killing, varies wildly from place to place and time to time. They are not, in fact, universal concepts.
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Old 23rd June 2022, 01:19 AM   #238
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Once you are dead, nothing ever mattered.


...snip..
Speak for yourself, the dead people I have known still have influence on my life.
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Old 23rd June 2022, 01:43 AM   #239
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Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post


The first issue is that people of all of the western religions have a problem reconciling a "loving God" with the actions of the environment this God created. They'll ask how a loving God allows a child to die of cancer, or a faithful town to be destroyed by a flood, or tornado. And the correct answer is God gave you free will when the universe and its elements were set into motion. So yes, God sits back while terrible things happen because that's the way it was designed. Were God to step in to prevent disaster, we would no longer have free will, and God is no longer the "creator", just middle management.

.

I don't think the above makes sense - the fact that natural disasters happen (eg tsunamis, earthquakes,floods etc.), and the fact that very young children contract some horrible fatal medical conditions, none of those things are about the freewill of anyone, are they? ...

... why do you think any of those things are the result of actions from freewill? It seems to me they are nothing to do with anyone's freewill.

Having said that; I always find it disappointing when atheists, and perhaps particularly anti-theists in debates where they are opposing Christians, use arguments such as the above ("argument from evil") to say that is the main reason why they do not believe a creator-God exists ...

... surely a far more obvious reason why we should no longer believe that any such God exists is that science has now explained absolutely everything that was once claimed to be the action of God.

It's surely obvious (?) that the reason why people in biblical times created their notion of a God, was because they were trying to explain all sorts of events that happened on a regular basis all around them ... disease, famine, drought, floods, the seemingly astonishing appearance of the night sky with its' stars, shooting stars, the moon etc. These were all things that no mere mortal man could control (or even create in the first place), and yet they all happened on a daily basis, and they were all things that had big and direct affect on the success and failure of everyones daily lives ... but if no Man created these things then the only other option seemed to be that a superhuman God must have created it all ... in a deeply pre-scientific age, that surely seemed to be the only possible explanation (ie it was all the work of a God).

But now, 2000 years later, we have answers to all of that from science. The answers are completely overwhelming and really unarguable, and they do not include any hint of anything such as a God.

The most obvious such answer is the discovery of Man's evolution. As far as I can tell, religions like Christianity are rooted in the belief that God created Man as his special and only purpose ... ie the universe inc. planet Earth was specifically created as a place where Man could exist ... otherwise there would be no point in having any universe or any creation at all ... it was all about the creation of Man. But of course, evolution has shown us that Man evolved from earlier apes - Man was not created in any religious miraculous way at all.

Evolution seems to me a fatal blow to religious belief. But really, all of the millions of discoveries from science are further huge blows to the credibility of any religious belief.

So just make the point of the above clear - for me, the obvious reason why we should reject religious belief in the 21st century, is that science has shown that all of it is wrong! That's surely a far stronger and clearer answer than arguing that natural disasters are incompatible with the existence of a God who's purpose was to create Mankind … above we were talking about contradictions in certain biblical stories as a reason for saying that the God is thereby disproved; but a vastly better argument is that all of those God/miracle stories have been shown by science to be almost certainly wrong – we now have scientific explanations for all of those God claims … the God claims/beliefs have become redundant and just no longer credible in the light of what we have since learned from science …

… and of course, that's also why so many Christians/other-theists find themselves denying all sorts of scientific discoveries … they are increasingly forced to do that because what we learn from science is incompatible with their religious beliefs about divine creation.

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Old 23rd June 2022, 01:43 AM   #240
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Thievery and murder are words for specific things that we consider immoral by definition. That's why we call them thievery and murder.

What actually counts as immoral taking, or immoral killing, varies wildly from place to place and time to time. They are not, in fact, universal concepts.
Exactly. No moral concept is universal.
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